Star-Bulletin Features

Thursday, January 21, 1999

By Craig T. Kojima, Star-Bulletin
Guitarist Derek Haderman, drummer Kili Kaohu, bassist
Mike Evans and singer Mike Ching are taking their band,
Crucible, on an international tour.

and proud of it

Before hitting Spain's
Repulsive Festival, Crucible
will thrash around
in Honolulu

By John Berger
Special to the Star-Bulletin


Derek Haderman, guitarist and spokesman for local extreme metal band Crucible, took a look at the prospects for commercial success in Hawaii and didn't like what he saw. Local radio stations don't play original apocalyptic rock. The prospects for paying club gigs are almost as bleak.

Haderman didn't quit his day job, but he didn't relegate the band to hobby status either. When Crucible released its debut album last fall he actively sought opportunities elsewhere and came up a winner.

Crucible -- Haderman, Mike Ching (vocals), Kili Kaohu (drums) and Mike Evans (bass) -- leaves Honolulu Feb. 1 for a one-month European concert tour. They play a bon voyage show tomorrow at the Thai Night Club (formerly Ninja House) on Kapiolani Boulevard.

"If I've been influenced by any author it would definitely be (Ralph Waldo) Emerson and his essays on self-reliance," Haderman says. "If you wait around for that magical someone to come out and discover you, it's never gonna happen. It may happen for some people somewhere, but my attitude is that you have to be self-reliant, take the initiative and get out there, no matter what."

Music and sports -- skateboarding, snowboarding and surfing -- have been his passions since his days with an early '80s punk/metal band in California. The band's music is written with those sports in mind.

He and the band will start their odyssey in Spain, and finish in Portugal. The big date along the way is Madrid, where Crucible will appear with Jesus Martyr, Asgaroth, Night to Die, Almathea and Disembodied, in the second annual Repulsive Festival Feb. 27.

Jesus Martyr is a power-thrash-death band from Argentina. The other bands represent the best of the Spanish power rock, melodic black and death flamenco scenes. Crucible and Jesus Martyr will be spending the rest of the month driving across Europe for a series of shows that will take them as far east and north as Lithuania and Estonia.

"Only two heavy bands have ever been to Lithuania from the United States. We'll be the third, and the Lithuanians couldn't believe that there's a band like us in Hawaii. The other aspect of it is that my great-grandmother came from Lithuania, and they're excited about that. We've already done an interview for a Lithuanian radio station and they said to be ready for the 'Lithuanian maniacs' when we get there."

Crucible goes to Japan in June for concerts with Japanese extreme metal band, Intestine Baalism.

Crucible has already overcome a daunting list of obstacles. Haderman met Ching when Ching's band, Epidemic, needed a good guitarist. One member quit shortly after Haderman suggested that Epidemic do originals instead of simple bar band remakes.

At least one more took off when Haderman and Ching made it clear they were serious about the music and called practice sessions four times a week -- once a week was more the norm. Epidemic became Crucible last January when the band learned that a mainland group had claimed their first name. They started recording shortly after that.

When the bass player "just disappeared from the face of the Earth" halfway through the project, Haderman erased the bass tracks and redid them all himself. Kaohu, the drummer for Broken Man, was asked to sit in as a session musician.

"We did the album because I wanted to document what we had done at that point, and I wasn't going to let anything slow us down," Haderman says.

Kaohu liked the music and played on the title track. When Crucible was invited to play the Repulsive Festival, Haderman asked Kaohu to play the tour and the other members of Broken Man gave their approval. With Evans signed on as bassist, the tour line-up was set.

Haderman says the self-produced tour is a financial gamble the band is willing to take in order to get their music and message heard.

"People write and sing about whatever they care about," he says.

"For us, it's social consciousness, and the core of it is original thinking. Some of our music has a downward groove, but when you hear what we're talking about we're preaching a success story. Imitation is suicide. Mindless conformity is a fate worse than death. If you have yourself, that's all you need."



bullet With: Mister Meaner and Friend of the Family
bullet In concert: 10 p.m. tomorrow
bullet Venue: Thai Night Club, 1685 Kapiolani Blvd.
bullet Admission: $5
bullet Call: 942-4676

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