Interview by Mike Coles
Conducted on 4/28/99
The only two things I want to say about Sinister are that; A) They're really nice guys &; B) they play intense death metal that everyone should check out.
This band has definitely gone through some line-up changes since this interview took place. So be sure and check out more information on them at www.sinistercentral.cjb.net
The Outcast: What are your opinions on religion?
Bart: The only religion I have is my own religion. I don't trust in anybody else, books, or anything else, and I don't care if it's the Christian religion, the Satanic religion, or whatever religion. I think the only true religion is the one you seek within yourself and you find your own ways of living your life.
The Outcast: Have your views changed any since your younger days?
Bart: No, not really. I've never been a religious person. I've never liked satanic stuff, I mean I like it when bands sing about Satan because I like to scream Satan when I listen to death metal, but it's not because I worship Satan or like any of this religious stuff. You can't sing about flowers playing death metal.
The Outcast: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would you change and why?
Bart: I don't think I have anything about myself that I want to change. I like the way I am.
The Outcast: If you could change only one part in History, either in your life, someone else's, or an event, what would you change and why?
Bart: I don't think that there's nothing to change. You should take life the way it comes. What's meant to be is meant to be. I think if you change something from the past your whole life will take a different line.
The Outcast: What is evil to you?
Bart: I don't really believe in evil. I just believe in energy. If there was any evil, I would just call it bad energy. I don't really believe that there is evil or that there is good. I think that good and evil are such concrete terms. I believe that everything is part evil and part good. If something good is working out good for someone, it's working out bad for someone else. I think everything is objective.
The Outcast: What is your #1 philosophy in life?
Bart: Take it as it comes.
The Outcast: Why do you think people go from one extreme to another? For example from a Satanist to a Christian or vise-versa?
Bart: I think that those people are searching for something. I think if you're switching too much between one end to the other end, maybe you don't really know what you want. Maybe you're just trying out some different stuff to see what you like best. I think people just don't know what they want so they look for some religion.
The Outcast: You're walking down the street and a Christian walks up to you and hands you a flyer that reads; "Have you accepted Jesus Christ into your heart?", and begins to talk to you about his beliefs.
A) Do you calmly tell him sorry but you have different beliefs and begin to talk about each others beliefs over a nice hot cup of coco?
B) Walk away and say nothing.
C) Tell him to fuck off and die.
Bart: I'd probably do something between A and B. I'll tell them that I'm not religious and tell them that I have my own beliefs and if it takes more than one minute I'll just walk away.
The Outcast: For one day you have Gods power, what do you do with that power?
Bart: I think everybody has a power of a god. You can do whatever you want. You can take your life wherever you want it to go.
The Outcast: What would be the ultimate pleasure for you?
The Outcast: Or is that too personal?
Bart: Everything you have asked me is personal, ha, ha.
The Outcast: Is that okay with you? I'm not offending you in any way, am I?
Bart: No, no, of course not. I'm glad you're asking me these questions.
The Outcast: Have you been asked these questions before?
Bart: Some, but not so many in a row. Most questions are about the music, the albums, tours, etc..., and if there is time left then they'll ask me questions like these, but back to your question. I think to me the ultimate pleasure is that there are 24 hours in a day. You have 6 hrs of sex, 6 hrs of playing guitar, and 6 hrs of hanging out, drinking beer, going to concerts, meeting friends, stuff like that.
The Outcast: What do you hope to find after death?
Bart: That's a hard question; I just hope we live on. I think we'll live on in some kind of way. I don't think you'll be burning in hell or everything will be good. I still think you'll have feelings. I don't think your feelings will stop. You'll still have your soul and you'll still have good things happening and bad things happening.
The Outcast: What are your beliefs on Murder? Rape? Eye for an eye? Turn the other cheek?
Bart: I hate murderers, I hate rapists even more. I don't really believe in an eye for an eye, but in some cases you just have to, you know? People who are rapists are just mentally sick. I mean you don't have to murder them, but I believe that it would be very good if there's an island where we can put a huge wall around it and put all the people (rapists) on the island and throw a couple of pieces of bread over the wall sometimes and just let them live their own lives back there and leave the women alone. That's what I think. If you turn your cheek, then they'll beat you again. So I don't think that is really working out. I don't think it's really cool to do this. It's your own life you're talking about; you don't want everybody to do just anything to you.
The Outcast: Were you ever "forced" to attend church growing up? If so, what was it like and what religion/denomination was it?
Bart: Yes, I was actually the Bhagwan (I don't know if that's how you spell it.). My parents were part of the sect and my parents wanted me to join. I was the only one in the family who didn't join this sect. Even at a very young age I was able to keep my own religion.
The Outcast: What have your experiences been like with Christianity, if any?
Bart: Well, not particularly bad, I think that these people are crazy for being Christians, but I respect that they believe it. I think they're not strong enough to have their own mind. I think if it's a good way of living for them, then its okay. I've never been bothered by Christians, so I don't have anything against them. I think it's there own deal.
The Outcast: Do you think people have a right to voice their opinion about a religion, or a "religious" belief without actually experiencing it?
Bart: No. I don't think so. I don't like judging other people, especially you said, when someone doesn't know anything about it. It's one of the things I keep in mind very much, why judge someone? You should focus your own energy on yourself and see what you can do with your own life.
The Outcast: Would you agree or disagree that metal, maybe not so much the music, but the contents/subjects that the bands sing/scream/growl about are pretty negative? What about other styles of music?
Bart: I don't agree with that. To me listening to music is more important than the lyrics. There are a lot of bands that I like very much and I have no clue what they are singing about.
The Outcast: Do you think that by listening to lyrics about death, destruction, gore, Satan, the death of all that is holy, sexual contents, etc.can influence someone's state of mind? Maybe making their lives/moods/state of mind a bit negative because they're exposed to it everyday if they're heavily into a style of music that tends to talk about negative subjects?
Bart: No, not at all. There are priests that are raping children who probably don't listen to death metal, they're probably listening to Beethoven or Bach, and they're still fucked up in the mind.
The Outcast: Do you think that Christian metal can actually exist? Do you think that it is a contradiction, metal and Christianity being in the same sentence? The whole "life style" that metal is categorized under (Example: Sex, Drugs, Violence, etc.).
Bart: No, on the contrary, why shouldn't Christians play death metal? If you're a Christian you can still like death metal. You know the band Mortification from Australia?
The Outcast: Yeah.
Bart: I think that some of their songs are pretty cool and I don't care if they sing about God or about Satan, you know? I just like the songs. These guys are Christians that like this music, so what?
The Outcast: In your opinion, do you believe that evil can be used for good and good for evil?
Bart: Man, that's a tough one. I really don't know what to say.
The Outcast: Yeah, some people don't know what to say to that one.
Bart: It's a weird way of looking at things. I think it's probably too deep for me. I have a different way of living and I don't think about questions like that. There is no good or evil for me.
The Outcast: What is your definition of a hypocrite?
Bart: Well, aren't we all? I think everyone is a hypocrite. The only good thing about hypocrisy is admitting to it. Everybody sometimes denies something that they did. Some people say things that they would never do and then do it a week later. In this case everyone is a hypocrite; we just have to live with it.
The Outcast: Who would you consider some of your influences right now?
Bart: It's still Slayer. They're really cool. I like Cannibal Corpse very much because they are so brutal and they know how to put happy (It sounded like "happy", but it could be "heavy".) riffs in brutal songs. That's what I like the most about Cannibal Corpse. I think Slayer and Cannibal Corpse are probably my biggest influences. There are a lot of new bands out right now that I like a lot, but I wouldn't consider them influences. I also believe that life in itself is a really big influence because when I'm in a really fucked up state of mind, or if something bad happens to me, then I'll write an evil riff. If I just got laid really good, then I write a really happy riff.
The Outcast: So would you consider them your favorite bands?
Bart: They used to be, but my favorite bands right now are Nile and Nauseam. I have so many CDs and tapes it's impossible to listen to them all.
The Outcast: Well, do you have any closing words?
Bart: Is there really not anything you want to know about the band (I know/knew enough!! - Mike - 2006)?
The Outcast: Well, what do you want to tell me?
(Laughter from both)
The Outcast: Like I mentioned before, with this issue I'm trying to stay away from the typical questions.
Bart: Na, I think it's really cool. I think this has been one of the better interviews I've done. You don't ask the standard questions.
The Outcast: That's what I'm trying to stay away from.
Bart: And that is cool, you know? If you don't want to write about our music that's cool to me too, I don't really care about it. I do a lot of interviews for the promotion so it's okay. I just want to say, like I said before, people shouldn't dig in each others lives so much and use their own energy to focus on their own life.
The Outcast: Well, I'll see you in Milwaukee this summer, and you take care.
Bart: Thank you very much for the interview and I'm sure I'll meet you in Milwaukee. If you walk by me just say that you're the guy with the cool questions about religion and stuff and I'll remember.
The Outcast: All right, take care.
Sinister: You to, bye.