“I don’t believe in humanity anymore”: Paura lead vocalist Fabio Prandini talks to Chaoszine about new album, state of the hardcore scene in a new exclusive interview

Author Daniel Agapito - 18.12.2023

Paura have certainly carved out a niche for themselves in the Brazilian hardcore scene over their almost 30 year history. Their last 2 efforts “Karmic Punishment” and “Slowly Dying of Survival” both received an all around positive reception from critics and fans alike. We had the chance to site down and discuss a range of topics from their new album to the current state of the Brazilian HC scene with one of the driving forces behind the band, lead vocalist Fabio Prandini.

One could say that Paura is one of the most well-travelled undergrpund bands from here in Brazil – how would you describe the evolution of the national hardcore scene?

Fabio Prandini: The biggest change was the internet. It is a beatiful tool thjat changed the world and definietly changed hardcore around here and I believe also worldwide. In my opinion, some years ago the hardcore scene worldwide was very stagnated, only old ideas, only old bands travelling around the world, new bands popping up only on a local level. Around 10 years ago, especially in Baltimore, a new, I don’t like to use the term revolution here but like an evolution for hardcore. Both lyrically and musically. Everything was refreshed, you know?

We are also able to watch this happen in Brazil. I belive in South America in general as well. There are many new bands formed 3 or 4 years ago, we’ve had a lot of new bands with new mentalities, more inclusive mentalities. They’ve broken these statements, these taboos – I’ve never liked these statements in hardcore, I don’t believe hardcore should have them. Hardcore is plural, it’s for everybody and it’s a cry out. It’s very refreshing and interesting to see this new community arising. Young kids, different people, all of them sharing the places and ideas.

I belive we are living a very special moment for hardcore music not only in Brazil but worldwide.

How would you say that Paura has evolved over the years and how would “Karmic Punsihment” fit into this evolution?

Fabio Prandini: This new album is kind of ifferent because everyone has had to live with the pandemic, everything stopping, lockdowns and whatnot. The times were really sad and generally heavy. The new one is different becuase of this. We’ve had a lot of time to think about the album. In fact, we started writing this album in 2019, then the pandemic arose. A lot of ideas came up, then we went through some lineup changes and we decided to rewrite the whole album. With these lineup changes, in 28 years a lot of people came through Paura.

I think the evolution of the band come from the kind of sound and music we like to make, but when the lineup changes, there are different influences from the people coming into the band. It was very helpful for us, very refreshing. Many new ideas that we could use coming into the band. Being surrounded by different people gives you a new perspective; the evolution in our sound is a consequence.

This new one differentiates itself because this time we had to think about the album, our lives, people that were dying. We had to follow some strict guidelines. Another good thing is that the lineup that has recorded the album consists of guys that in a moment of the band’s existence have already played with us. They lef tthe band and joined back. It’s a new lineup but with people we already new. We’ve always been friends and now we’re back to playing.

The power of this albums stems from those two points – the time we had with the pandemic and the new guys.

“Karmic Punishment” is full of sociopolitical commentaries. Could you touch a bit on some of the lyrical themes you guys touched on?

Fabio Prandini: As I’ve told you, the times in the pandemic were tough. It is what it is. I’m 51 years old and I think I’m starting to become a really motherfucking old man. I don’t believe in humanity anymore, I don’t believe in the paths civilization has taken; we’ve reached the point of no return for the planet. I try to find something positive in all of this shit. We don’t believe in governments anymore, we don’t believe in institutions that have been there (scoffs) forever but never changing. In a species we keep going in a place that is good for nobody. We see wars all the time, everywhere. We know it’s all there, masquerading but it’s always because of money, resources; it’s always financial.

The album brings some of that, We have to destroy everything that we have the way it is. Many things don’t work. Most things don’t work but people know what to do. People know the way to be more essentially human, they know what changes to make to these structures, for something more human. I’ve always said that human beings have created systems to serve human beings, but nowadays the system are only serving the systems. I think it’s like that. We are closer to anarchism and humanitarainism. We don’t believe in governments and politics and all that shit.

It’s kind of stupid to say this but for me that’s what I feel today. We’ve reached a point of no return. We have to save all the good things and destroy all that is bad. Maybe we could start again in a different place that is better for everybody, not for only some people.

The cover for the new album is also quite complicated, having an emalgomation of different elements. Could you dissect it for us?

Fabio Prandini: I think the best guy to answer this one is the artist. He is an old friend of ours and we share a lot of interests. We wanted it to be a very colorful art piece and have it have lots of elements. The band Big Cheese they have this amusement park, Backtrack have these very colorful artoworks. We wanted to bring something like this to the table; Crumbsuckers‘ “Life of Dreams”, old school crossover art. Lots of very colorful elements. I think we’ve gotten it in a good place, the result is what we wanted.

How would you say the sociopolitical situation in Brazil affects your daily life? By extension, how does it affect your music?

Fabio Prandini: We are not a known band so we just shout out what we feel. I believe things are a little bit better than what they used to be like 4 years ago but it’s still the same struggle. We have a lot of people in need, a lot of people in general with no access to a good education, a good healthcare system; public systems in general. Things are still bad. I believe we have to beat harder as a community on these problems so that people can find a better way to live.

In a 2017 interview with Brazilian outlet NadaPop, when asked about “Because We Care”’s lyric “if this is not your fight you’re already defeated”, you said that said fight was “a passion, not a hobby”. Is that still the case? What is the importance of the fight?

Fabio Prandini: Yeah, that’s still the case. I don’t think anything has changed for good, only for the worse. This struggle, this fight, it’s fighting for a more human world and a more human mentality. People care about people, about humans. We don’t care that much about material things only. I believe that is the fight. Every time you go out on the streets out feel bad, you see a lot of shit, bad situations. There is no way to make that invisible, to think that is ok. This is not life. Everything is wrong.

The fight is to bring more people to this. To have more people have ths realization. There are a lot of organizations that are helping a bunch of people, and you don’t need to do anythoing giant. A small act from everyone could help these people that are already fighting to help others stay alive, to feel more comfortable. I believe this is the fight.

It is a fight for human beings. It is a polçitical fight but in a sense that the most important things are the living beings. the planet. The people. Animals.

I remeber that interview for NadaPop, I said exactly that, “if this is not your fight, you’re already defeated”. It is like that. If this isn’t your fight and you keep thinking it isn’t, you’re already defeated. You’re not even in the game anymore. We don’t need you in the game, we can do it by ourselves. If sdomeone is so insensitve as to not embrace the struggle, that is the kind of people we are fighting against.