Metal Vaults Collection No 5 – George “Distort Collector”, from Colombia / Chile

Introduce yourself and how you first got into Metal

Hey Steve*, thanks for the interview, my name is George also known as Distort Collector, I´m from Colombia, South America but I currently live in Chile. I started out listening to Classic Rock when I was a small child back in the 80’s. My family and I Lived in the U.S and my mom was into stuff like Foreigner, Journey, Bad English, so it was basically what I listened to every time she played the radio or stereo. When we returned to South America when I was around 9 or ten years old I did not enjoy any of the local music since it was very different to what I was used to … so I tried sticking with local rock stations (which were one or two really) and found out on my own about bands which were a little bit heavier, hard rock and heavy metal. For some reason, in school, I met some kids which were into much heavier stuff, and since I was always a horror fan, at first the album covers of the records blew my mind away (I remember the Iron Maiden and Testament covers), and I just had to listen to what they were listening to. Once I had a ‘Dose Of Thrash’ and Death metal, I got hooked up and found one of my passions to date.
*from Aeons Abyss

Tell Noob Heavy about your collection

I’ve been collecting since 1993 aprox. Throughout the years I have lost many of my Items since I have been moving a lot in the past years, so I am constantly seeking and searching for most of the stuff I lost in the past. I usually collect Cassette Tapes and LP Records although it’s mostly cassettes. My collection includes mostly Death and Thrash metal with some occasional heavy metal things. I am a sucker for 90’s Death Metal from labels like Nuclear Blast, Earache, Roadrunner, Peaceville, Wild Rags. I am not sure how many items I have, but I think it’s around 80 cassette tapes and 25 Vinyl Records and it keeps growing every time.

What was your trigger to start collecting?

Mostly when I saw the kids in school trading, talking about bands in different parts of the world, knowing about different genres, that’s when something went ‘click’. I bought my first tape, then I bought another and then another and that’s how it’s been ever since.

How do you manage your collection?  

Fortunately, in South America, the metal movement is significant, here in Chile, heavy and extreme music have a big fan base, so here in Chile I have found people to trade with and buy from, although it’s more expensive since bringing records form the US or Europe always comes with a big Shipping fee and obviously people are aware of that, so most of the albums that can be found in the US for let’s say $20 USD, In south america, can be sold for twice the price. 90’s Death metal bands are always more expensive. I also buy a lot of music from Discogs. They take long to get here, but eventually they do. I once bought a cassette from Israel, Pandemic broke down and it took 6 months to arrive. I thought it was lost but it seems I was wrong (hehe) 

What is your most valued item, and does it have a story? 

I do not have one favorite Item, but one of my favorite items is the MassacreFrom Beyond cassette tape. I always wanted to own it, but It was only a few months ago when I had the opportunity to find it and buy It. Since I have it, I listen to it at least twice a week. Absolute pure old school death metal!

Massacre from Beyond Cassette

Which item in your collection has your favourite artwork?

I was once shopping with my grandparents around 1993 and I saw in a store a really cool t-shirt. I had watched Hellraiser the weekend before and this shirt really caught my attention because it was a reference to the movie, well, that’s what I thought at the moment, I really wanted to ask my grandparents to buy me the t-shirt but I did not want them to see it since it was a bit explicit (hehehe). I then realized it was not a reference to the Hellraiser movie, but it was a cover of a metal EP album. I believe you know which cover I am talking about =)

Testament – Return to the Apocalyptic City

What item has the craziest backstory and how did it come to be in your possession? 

I don’t recall a story behind any of my albums or cassettes. I got in touch with the guys from Aeons Abyss a few weeks ago, I wanted to purchase a copy of their album Impenitent on tape but unfortunately shipping to Chile is really expensive so I guess they will have to wait. (hehehe)

Post interview note – I have managed to arrange an Aeons Abyss, Impenitent cassette to be shipped to George

Why do you think it’s important to collect physical media and metal merch?

I think collecting physical media is just fun. I would say that the important thing is supporting the artist but nowadays it’s not that true, since most of the collectables are bands which do not exist any more or extinct record labels. So, collecting classic media is just a great hobby, where each item you find is like finding gold. Nowadays, digital media makes music easy access and hunting down classic, hard to find records is much more fun than finding stuff on the web and downloading or streaming. Although, our hobby is definitely more expensive

How can people follow you on Social Media?

You can find me on Instagram as @distort.collector
Thanks for this cool interview!

About Steven - Aeons Abyss 42 Articles
I do the music for the band Aeons Abyss, and also co-host The Metal Podcast on Spotify. I have been into Metal since the mid-80s, growing up in country Victoria, Australia. Some of my favourite bands from back in the day include Morbid Angel, Slayer, Obituary, Bolt Thrower, King Diamond, Megadeth, Sabbat and Iron Maiden. I am a massive fan of Aussie Metal, and underground metal in general, and for me, nowadays the scene is very much akin to the tape trading days when metal first started; but instead of tapes we have Bandcamp, websites like Noob Heavy, and Social Media platforms. These are the tools to network with other underground metal bands and metal fans from all over the world. A little about my band: Aeons Abyss formed in 2017 and we play our own brand of Death Thrash Metal. Our music is on all streaming platforms and Bandcamp, where we also sell our merch directly to fans. Also, our lyrics are a very important component of our music, so much so that our vocalist is known as "Death Metal Poet".

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