EMQ’s with Edson Graseffi from MOTORHAMMER
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview, with São Paulo, Brazil based Heavy/Thrash Metal band, Motorhammer. Huge thanks to vocalist/drummer, Edson Graseffi, for taking part.
What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?
My name is Edson Graseffi, I am a Brazilian drummer and singer. I have been active in the Metal scene for 35 years. I was the founder of Panzer, a traditional Brazilian Thrash Metal band that I played with for 25 years. After the end of this band, I put together two new projects. Motorhammer, band in which I am re-recording several songs from my discography to commemorate my three and a half decades dedicated to drums in heavy music. My other project is called Cosmic Rover (Stoner Metal), which had its debut album voted one of the best albums of 2019 by the readers of Roadie Crew magazine, the largest Heavy Metal publication in Latin America. In both bands, I play the role of drummer and vocalist full time, which is something very rare to see in the Metal world scene.
How did you come up with your band name?
When I created Motorhammer, I wanted a name that would express my intense and heavy playing and represent all the years of my work within the Heavy Metal scene, without any breaks. The name of a tool that hits mercilessly and in a heavy way seemed appropriate to represent all of this, in addition to alluding to Motörhead, a form of homage to a band so important in my musical background.
What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
We are a band from São Paulo, the biggest city in Brazil and Latin America. Here the scene was very intense from the 80’s until around 2005, when everything started to change. Due to problems related to my country’s financial situation, many small and medium clubs where the bands played closed their doors and the public mentality change that followed ended up making it difficult for the more underground scene to expand with tours and releases as it was in the past. But the bands keep playing for the love of Metal.
What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)
I will talk about my work personally, because Motorhammer is a very new band that emerged in 2021. I have around twenty-eight titles in my discography including CD’s, EP’s, Singles, compilations and DVD. My last release was precisely with Motorhammer, the EP “Round 35”. You can check all this material on my website:
‘Fighting Against The Walls’ (Audio)
Who have been your greatest influences?
There are many drummers who influenced me, but I can name Scott Travis (Judas Priest), Bill Ward (Black Sabbath) and Dan Beehler (Exciter) as my biggest influences. As a vocalist, I always liked the vocalists with dirty voice and full of overdrive, due to my type of voice, Blackie Lawless (W.A.S.P), Kevin Dubrow (Quiet Riot), Gene Simmons (Kiss), Mille Petrozza (Kreator) are some of them.
What first got you into music?
My first experiences with music were at school when I was just a child, I sang in a children’s choir for many years, it wasn’t connected to Rock n Roll at all, but it was a very important stage where I learned to use my voice. In 1983, I met Kiss and the “Creatures of the Night” album and that all changed my life forever.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
Oh Boy…There are many bands that I would love to work with, but if I could choose Testament and Metal Church, they would be two bands that I would have a dream come true.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
Any, if Testament and Metal Church were in the line-up
What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
Actually, the weirdest thing wasn’t a gift, but what a fan asked me for. At the end of a concert, a boy came to ask for my socks to take with me as a souvenir of the concert.
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
Don’t give up on Metal, it’s alive, just pay attention to everything around you, listen to new bands.
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
There are many, but I believe Neil Peart and John Bonham could be immortal, they would still have a lot to teach the world. Bon Scott was too early too, what wouldn’t he have produced with AC/DC? Would be wonderful.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
I admire musicians who play to the music, make their instrument play with feeling and always focused on what the music asks for. Hate is a too heavy word to use in that sense, but I don’t understand how there is a whole world scene that overvalues DJs and consumes that soulless electronic thing.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
I would bring the big labels back and consume them for physical material. A lot of people fought for the freedom to release everything independently, today we have it, but it was the money of the big labels that made many names become giants, there is no strong music market without money spinning and making the machine run, and that goes for the Heavy Metal too. Today new bands can’t make a living from their music which makes the whole music scene very vulnerable and uncertain.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
There are many, but Kiss “Creatures of the Night” has a huge importance in my life. Until today, I have the same feelings as that boy who was discovering the world of Heavy Metal when I listen to this record.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
Vinyl for sure!!!! Cassettes are awesome too if you have the right HIFI equipment to listen to them.
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
There were many good concerts in 35 years, but I can highlight a Cosmic Rover concert in Uruguay, a neighboring country in Brazil, in 2019, an amazing night sold out where we played to 1300 people hungry for Metal. The Uruguayan audience is incredible.
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
It’s hard to think about it because I’ve spent my whole life looking at music as the main pillar of my life, but I can say that maybe I was a surfer. My wife is a surfer, she surfs Body Boarding, I’m always on the beach with her and I see how those guys are free and have fun, it must be an amazing thing to do and live the scene.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
Five people who like to drink beer and talk about Rock n Roll!!
What’s next for the band?
Unfortunately, in my country and all-over Latin America, the shows are still hard to happen, so let’s record a live session in a studio for people to see Motorhammer perform live somehow.
What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
People can check out Motorhammer’s work on Spotify, the EP is available on all platforms. On my website, you can also listen to all the albums I recorded with other bands. On my YouTube channel there is also a lot of video material released by all the bands I played, mainly by Panzer which has a lot of videos on YouTube.
Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?
What are Jaffa Cakes? hahahahaha
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
I want to thank Ever Metal and Victor for the interview opportunity, your work in helping musicians like me to spread my work to the European audience is very important.
Victor’s full review of Motorhammer’s “Round 35” EO
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