A quick chat with PitVirus

PitVirus is a hard-rocking four-piece “supergroup” from Johannesburg, South Africa. With political and social commentary and catchy grooves, this is a modern protest band. They recently released their 5 track EP and it has been pretty well received by SA Music fans.

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I recently had a chat to PitVirus guitarist Chris Van Der Walt (who’s also a member of the Black Cat Bones, Boargazm and a few other bands) about a few things. This is what he had to say.

Where does the name PitVirus come from?

It started out as “PissVirus”. It’s a title of tune from a band called Amen. When we eventually found Dave, Marc told him over the phone what the band name was. As luck will have it, the phone connection was bad and Dave heard “PITVirus”. He started making some logos and designs. When he got back to us we all had a good laugh. It fits, the world is a pit, and we are the virus. We probably will get more gigs and listings without “Piss” in our name.

If someone should ask you to describe your music, what would you tell them?

We have a lot of groove. It’s a riff based band with powerful melodic vocals. White Zombie / Rage Against The Machine / Alice in Chains, etc. We sing about political themes, take a little jab at society and its morals, and we’re going to keep addressing various issues.

It’s a voice for people who just smile and wave, if you want to say something and you have a bad-ass riff behind you, it tends to have a little more impact. Live we also have an energetic show with live art, parody masks and various elements.

What are you currently working on?

We’ve recently launched our EP “State of the Nation”. We wrote so many songs that we’ve already started with the next album. It will be a full length one. We also wrote and recorded the first EP separately. This new one we’ll write and produce together. The first time the whole band got in a room together was when we performed at Wolmer Rock Show earlier in 2016. We had a rehearsal 2 hours before the show and magic just happened. We’ve all partied together and known each other for years, it’s just strange how it all came together.

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Which album is playing on repeat on your sound system right now?

Rob Zombie – “The Electric Warlock Acid Witch Satanic Orgy Dispenser”. It’s an incredible album.

What are your thoughts about the current state of SA Music?

The “gap” is getting a lot smaller. Our musicians are on a world class level. The shows are picking up, there are some great bands and events emerging. I would just like to see everyone up their game in terms of theatrics. Watching Iron Maiden, Slipknot, Rammstein, AC/DC, etc. just shows you how much cooler your delivery of your songs can be with added visual elements. Stage props, extra lighting, crazy shit happening on stage, extensive wardrobe, etc. I’m still trying to figure out how to do all this without getting killed or ending up bankrupt. We’re constantly growing as a scene and I’m extremely excited for what the future holds.

Where can people catch your next live performance and what can they expect from you?

We’re performing at recordingstudios.co.za’s 5th Birthday Party at The Good Luck Bar. We’re jamming with Naming James, Hellcats, Shortstraw and our singer will be doing a solo set. It starts at 12 and we’re on at 4PM.

Cicero Carstens be doing a live painting which we will be auctioning off to raise more funds for the event. We also have Warren Leicher (Plum, Arno Carstens) filling in on bass. Dave might have some tricks up his sleeve and Tom and Chris might spontaneously self-combust, who knows?

I would like to thank Chris and PitVirus for taking the time to tell us a little bit more about themselves and I wish them all of the best with their future musical endeavors.

I don’t know about you guys and girls, but I’ll be heading off to the Good Luck Bar in Jozi on Saturday to see and hear what the fuss is about. If you wanna go, click here to buy your ticket NOW! It’s for a good cause and watching the bands on the line-up might make you feel fuzzy inside or you might just rock the fuck out, who knows?

Watch this space for regular updates in the Music and Interviews categories on Running Wolf’s Rant.

PS: Photos by Henry Engelbrecht Photography.

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Henno Kruger
Blogger, Desktop Activist, Twitter / Facebook Addict, Music Festival Addict, Avid lover of South African music, Founder and owner of Running Wolf's Rant and co-founder of SA Music Zone

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