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Protokult: Quarantine Story

by Ivona Bogner

In Corona Corner, we are asking musicians how the outbreak has effected them, how did they adapt to the situation, what did they learn.  Protokult is Toronto based folk metal band with black and progressive elements. Their vocalist and guitarist Martin Drozd speaks for Metal Jacket Magazine today.

Hi! How are you doing during corona outbreak?
It’s been alright. More quiet than usual but I vowed to not let it bother me. Writing, listening, reading more than ever!

What have you cancelled/postponed due coronavirus?
Sadly, a popular St. Pats pub gig was postponed which we were headlining and looking forward to in Toronto. With the album being released this year, we wanted to do a release concert but may have to do a small, private event…for now.

How the global coronavirus pandemic is directly impacting bands?
Horrible. The music and entertainment industries are the ones hardest hit. Bands can’t travel, merch sales are down, venues are closing down, who knows if it will ever be the same again?

How are you keeping your fans during this chaotic period?
We try to stay active on social media, the new single Feed Your Demons has been released this summer and the new album, Transcending the Ruins, is finally coming October 1st.

What will metal look like when we re-emerge from isolation?
I spoke with some promoters and a few of them claim, a good “RESET” might be in order. Clubs can’t afford to have only 30-40% capacity, and I’m sorry, but I don’t want to enjoy a concert experience from inside a fucking car!

It’s natural for people when experiencing the power of live music, to congregate and come together; this is why even Toronto has banned live music in restaurants! They are aware of the bonding and social power it has!

I support underground private events and this may have to be the case over the next year at least. The fans and band who NEED music will make sure they are heard.

Who will suffer the most after all: musicians, organizers promoters…
Clubs and venues too. It’s unfortunate but will be a crazy new world for the next foreseeable while.

What is your isolation soundtrack?
Can’t think of a single band or album, but Dead Can Dance, old Mortiis, Gogol Bordello, Paradise Lost, and Carnivore are always a good time for isolating during crazy times. You get some relaxation/peace as well as some nice dystopian, apocalyptic vibes!

Besides gigs, what/whom do you miss the most?
Supporting local artists and the massive space-cadet glow….I suppose the normalcy and absence of hysteria/paranoia.

Do you have any rehearsals during quarantine? If yes, how do they look like?
As mentioned, we’ve been rehearsing almost every week since this nonsense began, so it’s actually benefited us! We stay a few feet apart and obviously won’t share drinks or anything so it’s quite normal. And speaking of benefits, I think COVID actually helped the album get finished faster since our producer/engineer Darren Mcgill finally had all this extra time on his hands.

Thank you so much for your time. Stay safe!

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