Missiles of October, a grunge rock trio from Brussels in Belgium, bring you “Don’t Panic“, released at the end of March 2014. Brussels lies a few miles north of the boundary between Belgium’s language communities; French in the south and Dutch in the north. The majority of Brussels inhabitants are french speakers, although the city has become somewhat multilingual. To date, Missiles of October have produced two EP’s; Body EP and Hangover EP along with their debut album “Don’t Panic”. The band only formed in the beginning of 2012, two years previous.
Missiles of October are Bob Seytor, Mathias Salat and Lionel Beyet. All three members have specific experiences in former bands along the same type of music genre. They each bring their own musical backgrounds to Missiles of October. Bob seytor and Mathias Salat did not just meet upon forming Missiles of October. They were actually in Rotyes together. Rotyes is a project created by Bob Seytor. Mathias Salat, singer of Galvanize, joined Rotyes as bassist. Bob Seytor was also a member of Contingent , the first Belgian punk band. Lionel Beyet is one of the founding members and the man in charge of P.O.G.O Records, a DIY label around since 1993. P.O.G.O Records is the label behind Missiles of October and have signed many other Belgian punk rock bands including Rotyes, Frau Blucher & The Drunken Horses, P.U.T and Galvanise.
I will be honest. It took a while for Missiles of October to grow on me. At first I was taken aback by the sheer volume of noise in “Don’t Panic”. The album opens with the identically titled song as the debut album. Instantaneously we are hit with this heavy and powerful guitar and drum combo. At 0:29 blood curdling vocals are released into the air waves. “Don’t Panic” is followed by “Music For Hangover” providing us with two outcomes. Either your hangover will ease or worsen. In “Two Feet In Sludge” Missiles of October climb out of the chaos and unleash an array of hatred for the society which imprisons us. At two minutes recording time “Become An Asshole” is the shortest track on “Don’t Panic” but it certainly conveys a message and achieves its point. “Wannabe” falls in line with the style of previous songs; ultimate noise rock.
Tone and pace quickens in “Cheerleaders”. It sticks out to me as drums and beats are louder. “Addiction” is a catchy tune once you get into the music. The album closes with “You Pray A World Of Shit”. To conclude, “Don’t Panic” by Missiles of October sets its own boundaries and its own limits within the musical realm. Missiles of October obtain a punk attitude with a very direct and forceful approach. They are true hardcore rockers who are not afraid to release vulgarity through their song titles and lyrics. Loud, dirty and angry, “Don’t Panic” stands for freedom of expression. In order to truly appreciate the ambience of their music, one might have to attend a live performance. “Don’t Panic” is made for the stage and mosh pits are a necessity.
This week we caught up with Lionel Beyet on the advancement of Missiles of October:
How was it that you guys ended up meeting and forming Missiles of October?
“The band was born in the beginning of 2012 at Brussels, Belgium. Mathias Salas, who just stopped his previous band: Galvanize, asked me if I wanted to create a new band with him. I hesitated a bit because with my other band, [P.U.T], we were in an intense activity at this period (new LP and a tour) but like we had already shared the stage many of times before and appreciated doing shows together. I accepted. Quickly, Bob joined the adventure. He was interested too to create a new band (he played with Mathias in Rotyes).”
Describe to us the various types of instruments you used to produce “Don’t Panic”?
“We are a classic rock band so for this drums, guitar, bass, scream and distortion effects!!!!”
What sort of recording equipment did you use for your album?
“We recorded it in our rehearsal room in 3-4 sessions with good mics, DIY spirit and patience. We have already recorded many things with our previous bands so we have acquired a certain experience about it and we know what sound we want.”
Is there an overall theme to “Don’t Panic”?
“Dont’ panic”!!!! The world is beautiful. Everything is going fine. Is it not what government and media tell us? It’s ironic sure, it’s ascertainment about what we can hear, read or see … and it’s ironic too about our band name, “don’t panic” Missiles are here huhu.”
The music is very loud and angry. Are you generally angry people?
“No, we are quiet and not aggressive people but many subjects made us very angry and we express it during our gigs with heavy and intense shows!”
Have you ever performed for friends and family?
“For friends sure, they are our lovely fanbase and they are often here for Brussels shows, about my family, my brothers seen us last year when we played in Paris.”
Can you tell us a bit about your background?
“Bob was singing in punk band Contingent (1978-1983 / reform since 2007). He also played drums & sang in Rotyes (with Mathias). He has been involved in a few other bands before like Valpurgis / Chainsaw. Mathias played in Rotyes like I said with Bob. He also played in punk band Frau Blucher & Drunken Horses, before he was playing in Galvanize. And me, Lionel, was playing in sludge indus band [P.U.T] since 1998. I have done other bands like Monsters Eaters. I’ve also been involved with P.O.G.O. Records since 1993.”
Why do you think punk is only arising now in recent years in Belgium?
“Punk scene was always here in Belgium like everywhere, and yes I think so too, it’s more active in recent years, many bands, labels, promoters and activists. It’s nice to see this. There are old bands still active from many years ago like Les slugs, Contingent or René Binamé and a new exciting scene like Frau Blucher or The Dysons.”
Are there any plans to work on another album?
“No plan actually. We just received vinyl version so we will continue during the next months to promote it everywhere we can in 2015. We will perhaps be recording 2-3 songs for a split and a 7″ compilation but nothing sure actually. We just want to promote the best of our 1st LP.”
Do you see more bands within your specific music genre becoming more popular in Belgium?
“With our specific music, it’s not popular music so … not many bands play this (I do not know all belgian bands too), but the band who is most famous here for noise rock is Vandal X. We have played in 2012 with them, so great! And we will play again with them in September at the 20th year anniversary of Magasin 4 music place. It will be great again.”
“You gotta look beyond the mainstream… the mainstream’ll drown you, you know? There’s always a pulse in the underground that I love. And the pulse in the underground is what keeps heavy metal alive.”-Phil Anselmo