Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Interview with Formicarius done by Patrick posted on 7-24-19

Interview with Formicarius done by Patrick

1.Hails please introduce yourself to the readers?
[Nazarkardeh – Guitars] Hails! We are Formicarius and we play Black Metal. Our sophomore record Rending The Veil of Flesh is being released on Friday 13th of September 2019 through Schwarzdorn Production. We are from the United Kingdom, but please don't hold that unfortunate detail against us.

 2.When did you first start listening to black metal and who were the first bands you listened to?Who are some of the current bands that has caught your attention?
Honestly? Black Metal is something that I think I truly discovered slightly later than my bandmates. Until early adulthood my interests mainly lay in Death Metal and traditional Heavy Metal. When I was listening to Black Metal it was the less orthodox bands that grabbed me, such as Windir, Anorexia Nervosa, Rotting Christ and later Bathory. It was through those bands I started to appreciate the old guard of Black Metal. I guess I've regressed over the years – I'm not very up to date with with much modern Black Metal outside of the UK, but the modern bands in metal that I'm following at the moment include Blood Incantation, Tomb Mold, Enforcer and Vltimas.

3.When did you first get the idea to start the band Formicarius? What is the current line up of the band?
The creative core of Formicarius have played together as a band since we were teenagers. I won't bore your readers with all the shambolic details of young musicians cutting their teeth over the years, but fast forward to 2014 and we decided to put our previous project to rest, and start something new putting everything we learned to good use. One crucial lesson was the old trope of suffering for your art – we didn't announce the existence of Formicarius for another year and our debut album Black Mass Ritual wasn't released until 2017. Why? Because half assed music is a waste of time. In the year of our Lord 2019, people are neck deep in bands, albums, school shootings, demos, singles, climate change  apocalypse, EPs, playlists, reptilian conspiracy theories, gigs, festivals, and whatever else. Why the hell should one expect people to listen to their music in amongst all that mayhem unless it's done to the best of one's efforts? Our lineup on Rending The Veil of Flesh is Lord Saunders [Vocals, Guitars] yours truly [Guitars], Morath [Keyboards] and Hægtesse [Bass]. Behind the kit on this album is Kevin Paradis, who you might know from the other bands he's played with such as Benighted, Melechesh and Svart Crown. We also have an equally skilled full time drummer who has recently joined us, however his identity will remain a mystery for a little while longer. Two other guests on the album are Nico Millar of the UK black metal band Aklash and Sakis Tolis of Rotting Christ fame, who both appear on the track Early Shall I Seek Thee. Rotting Christ have been a major influence on me for many years, so having Sakis on our album is a serious honour.

4.Who would you say are the bands biggest influences and for the readers who have never heard the band's music how would you best describe it?
 The term which we have often used for Formicarius is English Black Metal. The reason we use that term rather than one of the many millions of paragraph-long subgenre names is that British Black Metal has always had a certain feel... One that isn't defined as clearly as subgenre but that can be heard in the tone of the music – a cynical kind of self awareness that isn't just limited to black metal but extends much of our national art. I think you can detect it in the Gothic authors of the 19th century all the way to bands like Cradle of Filth, Hecate Enthroned, Akercocke and Paradise Lost. We aren't patriotic people, but we are proud to have that musical DNA in Formicarius. That, to me, is why English Black Metal reflects who we are better than any of those buzzwords.

5.Rending The Veil Of Flesh is the bands second full length which will be released in September.How long did it take the band to write the music for the new release?
Hard to say really – The skeletons of some of these songs have existed for quite some time. The main riff to Within The Depths for example has existed for nearly a decade but couldn't quite find a home for it until the writing process for this album! I try never to throw away riffs and ideas anymore – that one idea that didn't quite work for one track might be perfect for something a few years down the line. We actually received the final masters of the album nearly a year ago! Since then it's been preparations for release, finalising artwork, deciding on release formats, videos, promotion and all the other BTS stuff that comes with releasing a record. It can be very frustrating, but as I said earlier, releasing something half-complete and not fully realised is a waste of time, and so the waiting has been worth it for us to be bringing out an album that is 100% what we wanted to release.

6.Who usually handles writing the lyrics for the music and what are some topics written about on the new release?Which usually comes first the music or the lyrics?
 So far in Formicarius the music has always come first. Usually myself, Lord Saunders or Morath will bring an idea forward and we will then begin working on it together until we're happy with it. The lyrics are handled by Lord Saunders, Morath or Hægtesse, so perhaps I'm no great authority. But here in the UK we don't listen to experts anymore so I'll talk about them anyway! A common topic in Formicarius is history – After all, the Formicarius was a medieval treatise which was one of the first European writings on Witchcraft. This album is no exception, with topics including Early Christianity in the declining Roman Empire (Early Will I Seek Thee) Eleanor of Aquitaine, one of medieval Europe's most powerful women (Dieu Et Mon Droit) and everyone's favourite bloodthirsty Wallachian Voivode (O, Dread Impaler). History isn't the only topic, but in the meantime all I will say is that the Vojtech Doubek's masterful artwork for the album gives a few clues as to some of the other lyrical concepts therein...

7.Besides the upcoming release Rending The Veil Of Flesh is the debut release still available for the readers to buy?Besides the physical releases does the band have any other merchandise currently available if yes what is available and where can the readers purchase it?
 Our debut album Black Mass Ritual is available through our record label Schwarzdorn Production. Our merch is available on our BigCartel.

8.Does Formicarius play live very often or do you prefer working in the studio?What have been some of the bands most memorable shows so far?Who are some bands you have shared the stage with?
 I could never just be part of a studio project. As a musician playing live is hugely important, and the experience and adventures of touring have been some of my greatest life experiences. With Formicarius one unforgettable show was playing a festival in the North of England called the Black Tor Gathering. This show took place in a 17th Century Inn situated high above the hills of the Yorkshire Dales – 1,732 feet above sea level to be specific! Quite a peak to blast out some Black Metal. Among other great artists we have shared stages with Negura Bunget, Hecate Enthroned, A Forest of Stars and Hate.

9.Are their any tours or shows planned in support of the Rending The Veil Of Flesh release? If yes where will the band be playing and who are some bands you will share the stage with?
 Our announced shows in support of Rending The Veil of Flesh are as follows: September 8th - Dark Clouds Over Camden at @ The Lounge, London w/ Hecate Enthroned September 14th - The Junction, Plymouth w/ Hecate Enthroned October 19th - The Fenton, Leeds w/ Aklash January 25th - Warhorns Winterfest, Rotherham Of course we have no intention of stopping there! We will take this album wherever we can, the priority being as much of Europe as possible.

10.What does Black Metal mean to you?
Black Metal is music. That's it. I don't agree with any of the philosophical pontificating or cringeworthy essays that some artists feel the need to subject us to lately. We do what we do and we make what we make on our own terms. If we don't fit some basement dwelling dork's 666 page manifesto on Black Metal as a vessel for raw Luciferian darkness, then thats fine with me - they can keep wanking themselves silly over Varg Vikernes vlogs and their deluded sense of superiority.

 11. Formicarius comes out of England's black metal scene what is your opinion of the black metal scene in England?
If any readers aren't familiar with the UK Black Metal scene beyond the obvious big names like Cradle – Then do yourself a favour and go discover it! We might not have the kind of societal support for the arts that our Scandinavian cousins do, which makes it harder for us trapped on this miserable island to break through internationally, but there are bands in the UK that deserve as much attention as the Swedes and Norwegians get!

12.Who are your all-time favorite bands coming out of England and are their any new bands you feel the readers should check out soon?
Judas Priest and Iron Maiden, obviously! If English civilisation gave nothing else to the world but those two bands, it would have all been worth it. And of course there is Black Sabbath, King Crimson, Pink Floyd, The Cure, Depeche Mode, Joy Division, Paradise Lost, Venom, Bolt Thrower, Godflesh, Napalm Death, Carcass, Rainbow, Deep Purple, Whitesnake and Queen! We've had a pretty good thing going on when it comes to music. I only hope that some very stupid decisions being made by our country right now don't make it harder for any of our great rising underground bands to get the recognition they truly deserve!More recently? Every one reading should check out Aklash, whose frontman Nico features on Rending The Veil of Flesh. For black metal there is also Necronautical, Trivax and Deadwood Lake, and for Death Metal the UK has Live Burial, Repulsive Vision and Cryptic Shift all delivering riffs by the truckload.

13.Besides playing in Formicarius do you or any of the members currently work with any other bands or solo projects? If yes please tell the readers a little about these?
 I play in the death metal band De Profundis, with whom I've been busy lately writing the follow up to last year's The Blinding Light of Faith. Morath also plays for the Black Metal band Domitorem, in which she's handled both keyboard and bass duties. As myself and Lord Saunders are both mad enough to do music as full-time careers, we are both involved in various ways in numerous other projects, both metal and otherwise.

 14.Thank you for taking the time to fill this interview out do you have any final words for the readers? Thank you to the readers of Winter Torment for making it this far through my ranting! Rending The Veil of Flesh will be released on Friday 13th September 2019 through Schwarzdorn Production – but in the meantime you can listen to the first song we have released from the album Early Will I Seek Thee, which features none other than Sakis Tolis of Rotting Christ!

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Interview with Crimson Moon done by Patrick posted on 7-21-19

Interview with Scorpios vocalist,music  of Crimson Moon  done by Patrick
1.Hails Scorpios how are you doing this week?Please introduce yourself to the readers?
It’s been a busy week getting my home studio (Oneironaut Studios) re-constructed after some renovations and upgrades I am looking forward to finishing and get back into a song writing process. I am the founding member of Crimson Moon, though I have covered all instruments in past recordings, my primary role is bass, vocals keyboards, songwriting, lyrics and some of the additional instruments that are occasionally added.

2. Scorpios you have been a part of the black metal scene since the early 90's were you a big reader of fanzines?If yes what were some of your favorite fanzines that you read?
Yes, I would read whatever I could get my hands on back in those days. It’s hard to recall most of the names of them, I remember Petrified Zine being one of the first few I had obtained.

3.Besides fanzines I know tape trading was big back in the 80's and 90's did you ever do much much tape trading?What were some of your favorite demo's and releases?
Yes, I did tons of tape trading back in the day. Again a little difficult to recall a lot of it, and when I relocated to Germany, I had to part ways with a lot of my collection. I enjoyed quite a few cassette compilations, one that comes to mind was Diabolical Netherworld which got me introduced to a lot of bands before they were really known. 

4.You formed Crimsoon Moon back in 1994 what gave you the idea to start this band?And how did you choose Crimson Moon as the name of the band?
I was getting tired of trying to work with the musicians I knew where I lived, and their lack of motivation. I obtained my first Tascam 4-track and quickly realized it was possible and much easier to do things on my own. So, I recorded the 1994 self-titled demo, barely knowing how to operate the Tascam, and started circulating the demo through mail/tape/trading/flyers etc. The name came about from a sort of reoccurring dream that I had, where the Moon had turned to Blood.
5.I believe you started the band as a one man band when did you decide to add more musicians to make a full band?
There wasn’t a full lineup until 2007 when the “Serpent Beneath the Skin” e.p. was recorded and supported by a small North American tour. The other members of this lineup were located in the US, at the time in the same state (Georgia) but shortly after everyone relocated to different areas of the U.S. so the line-up was short lived. I ended up recording all the instruments on the last album, Oneironaut and it was during the last stages of production in 2016 I was able to establish a much more viable line-up that we now perform live and recorded “Mors Omnia Vincit” with . I live in a remote location, outside of a small village, so it took some time to find the right people that are within a reasonable distance to operate as a band.

6.Mors Vincit Omnia is the bands newest release how long did it take you to write the music for the new release? How long does it usually take to complete one song?
I wrote the material relatively fast. Most of it within a couple of months and in total, I think about 3 months, but generally when I write, I tend to get about 75% of a song done all in the same session. It’s usually the final touches that can take longer. I ended up with a lot more material than we ended up using for the album, so it gave the luxury to listen to them and decide which material was the best to use in this particular release. Some songs were completed in one session, while others were not completed lyrically until it was time to record the vocals. 

7.Where do you draw inspiration for the lyrics and what are some topics you wrote about on the new release?Whic usually comes first the lyrics or the music?
The new album is about Death, so Death is where I got the inspiration. 90% of the time I come up with the lyrics after the music is written. Sometime I will start with a general concept of what the lyrics will cover, or a song title, but usually it is the other way around.
8.Besides the new release Mors Vincit Omnia are the bands previous releases still available for the readers to purchase?Besides physical releases does the bnand have any other merchandise currently available if yes what is available and where can the readers purchase it?
Yes, we have additional merchandise (shirts, amulets, etc) and some of the previous material available on our bandcamp page. We will be re-stocking some of the previous material that is out of stock in the near future, but most of those can also be found on other distros, save for some of the more limited releases that are sold out.

9.How do you feel Crimson Moon's music has evolved over the years? And who would you say the bands biggest influences?
The music has evolved in many ways, compared to old material that was very raw and a lot more minimalistic in structure. Production quality I feel each release has improved, our last album being the strongest to date. I would definitely say musicianship has improved for me personally and the current lineup compared to the older releases. As far influences, in the early years, it was a lot of the early 90’s black metal. At that time I pretty much listened to music 24/7. Nowadays, especially when I am trying to write music for Crimson Moon, I tend to listen to less music, and that pertains especially to any black metal that is relatively new. I listen to a fairly wide variety of music and try to find ideas that inspire original approaches to things, though I honestly find most of my inspiration now through spending time in nature, which I do a lot of.  

10. Does Crimson Moon play live very often or do you prefer working in the studio?What have been some of the bands most memorable shows over the years?Who are some bands you have shared the stage with?
We play mostly festivals over the last 3 years since we started becoming active for live performances again. We are not interested in playing as many shows as possible, as we prefer quality over quantity in that aspect. I personally prefer the studio aspect over the live performances. We get a lot of offers we turn down for live shows, especially these tour offers where you are expected to basically pay to play. As we have not agreed to any exclusive booking agent, it can make finding a lot of shows more difficult, so all we have done was usually the case where the promoter contacts us and can agree to our terms. I think I prefer it this way, some of these booking agencies really made going to festivals and shows less desirable as they tend to shove the same bands over and over at every festival that is happening. There also is a lot of aspects to getting shows I have little patience to deal with, so we have our conditions, which are fair and if they (promoters) are not willing to provide, then we simply say no. We are not interested to play shows for charity to support someone else’s agenda. We have played a lot of very good festivals over the last 3 years, so it’s hard to even remember all the bands we shared the stage with. 2017 we played for our first time in Finland at the Steel Chaos festival which was great, immaculate organization on all aspects and a very good lineup of bands. Some other festivals we played over the last couple years would be Sequane Fest (France) Under The Black Sun, Speyer War Mass,  Rock for Roots (Germany) etc. 

11.Are their any shows or tours planned in support of the new release if yes where will the band be playing?
We will be playing the Barther Open Air festival (Germany) next month which will be just a few weeks before the new album is out, and we have confirmed for De Mortem Et Diabolum festival in Berlin this December. That is all that is publicly confirmed at this point, and with a Summer release date of the new album, a lot of the festivals this year are already filled as far as the rosters/bands, unfortunately. I have only come across a few reviews of the new album at this point, but if they continue to be as good as what we have received so far, I think we will be securing more spots in the near future for live shows.  
12.I know the band draw influences from Occult and other dark arts when did you become interested in studying these subjects?
Since an early age, I was probably about 15 or so when I started getting heavily into it and reading all I could obtain, but even before that I had an interest in it, a lot of it just from the music I grew up listening to. 

13..Who are some occultists you like t like to study? 
Nowadays, there aren’t any really that I study or follow. I found it to become a much more personal path for me and I have learned more from that than I do from someone else’s theory or explanation/opinion towards it. The occult is much like black metal since the age of internet: over saturated with useless material that is just a re-hashed copy. I can learn more sitting at a river in solitude that I can with my nose in a book. 
14.What does black metal  mean to you?
… Satan.
All joking aside, to me Black metal is music that is based on dark aspects and has no room for a lot of the ridiculous new “rules” and political correctness I see being brought up left and right on social media. It’s basically a lifestyle I identify with for over half of my life. It has nothing to do with scenes, trends or politics. 

15.Thank you Scorpios  for taking the time to fill  this interview out do you have any final comments for the readers?
For those who have not caught it yet, we have a premiere available online to hear of a track titled “Godspeed, Angel of Death” from the new album, and a second premiere track will be available to hear streaming online on the 29th of July. Preorders are now available for digipak/vinyl/special edition vinyl and shirts via Debemur Morti Productions and our bandcamp page, which you will find all relevant, links for below.
Debemur Morti Prod North American shop:

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Interview with Sculpted Horror done by Patrick posted on 7-17-19

Interview with Tim Rowland vocalist.instruments done for Sculpted Horror  done by Patrick

1.Hello Tim  how are you doing this week? Please introduce yourself to the readers?
Doing well. I’m Tim, the guy behind Sculpted Horror. I’m also involved with several other bands or solo acts such as Lothric, Woccon, Primal Gore, and Bellkeeper. 

2.When did you first discover death metal and who were the first bands you listened to? Who are some of your current favorite bands?
I discovered death metal when I was around 16, so about 14 or 15 years ago. A friend and coworker at a grocery store job I had back then, introduced me to Death. I was sold instantly. Especially the later albums in their discography like Symbolic and The Sound of Perseverance. Starting primarily as a drummer those albums were mind blowing to me. I next discovered what is still my favorite death metal band to this day, Morbid Angel. Their albums Domination and Gateways to Annihilation were a huge influence on my younger years. Current death metal bands I’m really into would be this new wave of grimey old school stuff like, Undergang, Tomb Mold, Cerebral Rot, Fetid, Outer Heaven, etc. I could go on forever with those new bands. I also listen to a lot of black metal and nerdy ass stuff like dungeon synth. 

3.Tim you started Sculpted Horror  2018 what gave you the idea to start this band?And how did you choose the name for this band?
I was definitely inspired by the new demo tape era of osdm. I really just wanted to be a part of the excitement and put out a tape of my own. The name was settled on after a rocky start of name choosing adhd. I just liked the two words together. It was a way of describing a twisted mass of horror in imagination. It also kinda implies that creating the music is a way of sculpting horror. I don’t know. It just worked. 

4.For the readers who have not heard Sculpted Horror  yet how would you best describe the musicial style?Who would you say are the bands biggest influences?
Gross and grimey, thick and seeping old school shit. For the sound of Sculpted Horror, older stuff like Demilich and Autopsy were a driving force of inspiration, as well as newer bands like Undergang. 

5.Festering Death is the debut demo which is getting released through Redefining Darkness Rec. when did you first come in contact with this label?
I guess I was kinda discovered by Thomas, the dude behind Redefining Darkness, through him browsing music. He just stumbled on the demo and messaged me that he would be interested in working together in some form. Of course, I was well aware of the label beforehand as he’s released music from bands I dig, so that was a plus.

6.How long did it take to write the music for the debut demo?How long would you say it takes to complete one song?
I can’t quite remember how long it took, but if I were to guess, somewhere around a week. It was really fast. I got a guitar tone dialed in and started hammering away riffs to start. As for a song in this style, I mean, anywhere from a day to a few. It comes easy if the sound is right and that’s what makes it so fun to write and play. 

7.Besides the Festering Death release does the band have any other merchandise currently available for the readers to purchase? If yes what is available and where can the readers buy it?
The demo tape in both incarnations is the only physical thing available. 

8.Tim you are the sole member of the band would you like to find more musicians to work with or do you prefer to work alone? If you had the opportunity to work with any musicians{past or present} who are some musicians you would like to work with?
Over the years I’ve played with many bands and musicians. As I get older I definitely enjoy just going my own way. It’s nice to not need anyone to record an album and it’s more fun to me. I like being in control of all the ideas from art, to performance, to production. It’s freeing and empowering. As for musicians to work with, I’d have some dumb answer like Prince or David Bowie. Haha But related to this genre, probably Trey Azagthoth. I’d like to understand his direction of composition and riff writing more closely. It’s unique in the death metal world for sure.

9.What do you feel is the easiest and hardest part about being a one man band?
The easiest part is that I can just do whatever I want without the possibility of conflicting ideas. The hardest part would be playing live, because you kinda need other folks for that to work. Haha.

10.Have you started working on new music for the next demo or would you like to try to release a full length? How many songs will be on the next release or have you thought that far ahead?
I have about 6 or 7 songs sitting as scratch tracks and tabs for whatever I decide to do next. I was planning on doing a full length, but sometimes I get the urge to stay in this demo tape direction. Who knows? My opinions change constantly so I don’t even know. I’ll just follow the inspiration where it takes me. 

11.Sculpted Horror comes out of Georgia's death metal scene what is your opinion of the scene in your town and state?
In my town, Athens, there is a small metal scene bubbling, but not so much in any of the styles I’m accustomed to or interested in. Atlanta has a more powerful death and black metal scene that’s growing for sure though. This state could be much much better and hopefully it will be in time. There’s probably one good metal band out of every twenty shitty ones. I’m sure that’s nothing unique to this scene though. 

12.Who are your all-time favorite bands coming out of Georgia and are their any new bands you feel the readers should check out soon?
I don’t know about “all time” because there probably isn’t one for me. Mastodon maybe?  
Vimur is an up and coming black metal band from Atlanta that’s rad. 

13.When you need to take a break from working on new music or band business what do you like to do in your free time?
Play video games for sure. Read world history related stuff. And of course, be with my wife. That’s where my current headspace is at. 

14.Besides working in  Sculpted Horror I believe you play with other bands and projects please tell the readers a little about these?
I have a dorky ass dungeon synth project about the Dark Souls series called Bellkeeper. It’s so much fun to make. I have a black metal solo project that’s fairly new called Lothric. Just finished a full length follow up to an ep I released earlier this year. I also play in the melo-doom band Woccon that’s kinda on a small hiatus after losing an entire album of recorded material due to a hardware failure. I also shat out a Jungle Rot style, meat and potatoes death metal ep from another solo deal, Primal Gore, earlier this year as well. Probably more solo projects to come and less bands. Some fading out and some coming in. I just follow where inspiration takes me.

15.Thank you Tim for taking the time to fill this interview out do you have any final comments for the readers?
Thanks for whatever support has been shown for Sculpted Horror or any of my other things. It means a lot that people enjoy whatever crazy ideas I shit out. Nothing but motivation to keep shitting.
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