Johannesburg serves as home city for the primarily Afrikaans language grindcore band Insek (translated: Insect). Begun in 2005 from the remains of Groinchurn (reunited in 2014 to support Sepultura in South Africa) who dominated the grindcore genre locally and made a name for themselves abroad before disbanding in 2001, Insek arrived with intent to fill the then-void live scene. The band released their 2008 Maaiers (translated: Maggots) debut album through Sheer Music to some acclaim which included a 2008 SAMA nomination in the ‘best alternative album’ category. Insek, however, began a shift away from live performance following the album, and gravitated more towards writing, and with great spaces of time elapsing between live appearances. The band has returned with vigor in 2015, including an appearance at Witchfest Urban Festival along with top South African and international bands (line-up here).
“The next album is yet to be titled and will be released by Defense Records in Poland. We are hoping to see it out by the final quarter of this year.” ~ Christo Bester (vocals/bass, Insek)
Insek are currently active with writing and recording, having completed the new track ‘Kognitiewe Dissonansie’, for which the initial version was recently released for public enjoyment. The band promises more such releases via their reverbnation page to follow, with the final and complete versions eventually appearing on the album. With the band being astute protagonists of the Afrikaans language, we asked Christo to tell us more about the song most recently released.
“With this song, I try to relate the ‘cognitive dissonance’ in a South African context, specifically referring to a large portion of previously disadvantaged South African’s resistance to be taught in “the language of the oppressor”, Afrikaans (Soweto uprising in 1976); versus the willingness to adopt “The oppressor’s” religion of Christianity. South Africa is one of the most religious countries in the world, with something like 80-90% of the population identifying themselves as Christian” ~ Christo Bester
The song reflects a further press of heavy metal culture attempting to address and unravel the complexities of South Africa’s political past and present, where many local metal bands are known to bring focus to the subject from a variety of points of view.