This Death metal act from Cuba merits respect and admiration for never stopping composing and playing music after more than two decades. I put my knees on the ground and take off my hat before this quintet. CONGREGATION is synonymous with tenacity and growth. These days they celebrate their 21st anniversary with an album, and the guitarist Jorge Garcia "Indio" talks about it.

CONGREGATION has been on the Cuban scene for 21 years. What does it feel like? "…We have really been 21 years since the first concert, we felt like the first day, it was always an artistic concern that we carry inside with the desire to enjoy among friends and have a good time, and enjoy the music that is one of our most deeply rooted passions, after so long nothing has changed, despite our status current as a professional band, the possibility of going out in some other medium, or the feeling that everyone is looking at you and knows who you are, CONGREGATION has remained the same, a place of refuge, a musical sanctuary, where friendship, humor and death metal, take us away from that murky voragine called reality…."

 

What have been the greatest satisfactions? "…Above all, there is satisfaction in having been able to build a band like ours.  It is filled with talented musicians but with a lot of human quality, an inviolable principle for any band's longevity. There's satisfaction in having the support of all our fans, even in the darkest times. When we think of that, despite our determination, the band would disappear, but thanks to that image of an entire audience, ready to listen to your riffs and give you a fist up, get up, raise your forehead, look with hatred at failure. But if it is about satisfaction, I will never overlook the satisfaction of turning Congregation into more than a band over time. CONGREGATION is a family that one chooses, that does not fail you, that does not judge you, embraces you, and loves you when you least deserve it.  That one, that when the time comes, and your baby asks, "who are those long-haired guys"; you, with a heart like a melon, say, "those, those are your uncles", haha…."

 

What have been the biggest dissatisfactions? "…The lack of diffusion of metal in general and the lack of support from many institutions that are not interested in music that is not "danceable".  I can mention the obstacles they put to the bands to play, and the lack of financing, logistics, and formality for the "freaky" bands.  The institutions give you a hard time for the simple fact of not being high-ranking bands of Cuban popular music. Also, there are few venues to play, the paternalism with some bands, and the Music Institute's obstacles to audition new musicians. For things like these, the movement is diminished. Little by little, they have made a fence where the metal fan is punished for visiting a place, seeing a few bands, and not enjoy their productions. That pissed me off, that makes you want to hang up your gloves, but CONGREGATION is not like that, CONGREGATION like many bands, despite these waves, fight, resist, represent…."  READ MORE...

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