(On this black Friday, we present Comrade Aleks’ interview with Regen Graves of Abysmal Grief.)
Probably someone could have missed the appearance of Abysmal Grief in one of NCS’s latest Seen and Heard themes, so here’s a chance to take a look closely into their crypt.
It’s naturally one of darkest and most ominous bands of Italy; for eleven years they have written hymns in the name of Death and have done it well. Strange Rites of Evil, the fourth full-length album of Abysmal Grief, is heavy as a coffin lid, it’s filled with chilling breeze from the crypt and pervaded with night fog. Need to resurrect the dead? Play it loud.
Meanwhile we had a talk with Regen Graves, one of Abysmal Grief’s undertakers.
(Here we have another interview from our friend Comrade Aleks, and this time he talks with Alan Averill about Dread Sovereign.)
Dread Sovereign is known as a doom band formed by Alan Averill, frontman of legendary Irish band Primordial, Simon O’Laoghaire, who played drums in the Celtic black metal band Geasa (as well as in Primordial), and guitarist Bones, who gained experience in the sludge / crust band De Novissimis.
It’s said that Dread Sovereign was formed in 2013, and after the EP Pray to the Devil in Man was released in the same year, Ván Records put out full-length record All Hell’s Martyrs in 2014, which attracted attention from many listeners, and not only doom heads…
All has been said about this album, and I just needed a reason to get in contact with the band to hook out any plans… I was lucky enough ‘cause Alan found the time to answer my questions. Thanks Alan!
(Comrade Aleks brings us another interview, this time with Simon O. of the Argentinian funeral doom band Fungoid Stream.)
So what do we have here today? Another Italian doom outfit? Wrong answer! Fungoid Stream is a funeral doom duo from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Joseph C. and Simon O. are dedicated researchers of Howard Phillip Lovecraft nightmares and each of their three albums are based on his writings. Also it’s known that Simon O. has his solo project Qhwertt – an experimental funeral thing with a conception built around Clark Ashton Smith stories.
Indeed, the third Fungoid Stream work Prehuman Shapes was released a year ago (once more with the help of Furias Records), but something scratching and whispering in my dreams has made me think about Fungoid Stream more often than I’d like to. It seems that Simon O. was waiting for my answers because he answered even faster than I could expect. It is strange… Well, probably just a coincidence… Anyway, I need to thank Eduardo of Furias Records for organizing this interview.
(Argentinian journalist Matías Gallardo rejoins us with this interview of Antonio Sanna, the man behind Downfall of Nur, whose fine debut album Umbras de Barbagia was released earlier this year.)
The year is coming to an end and the black metal scene has many things to toast to. One of them is the appearance of Downfall of Nur, the one man band from an Italian-Argentinian multi-instrumentalist named Antonio Sanna. Hailing originally from the land of Sardinia, Italy, Antonio moved to Argentina as a kid, and now at only 19 years old he has become one of the more interesting faces in the genre. Mixing the raw and classic sound of Scandinavian black metal whilst identifying himself with the Cascadian sound of masters like Wolves in the Throne Room and the folk influence of giants Agalloch, he released Umbras de Barbagia, one of the most exciting debuts of the year. In this interview, Antonio talks about the beginnings of the band and how much his indivisible emotional link with his homeland remains as the key influence in his music.
Before Downfall of Nur you played in projects like Dreon, Drowned in November, Funeralopolis, and Philosophie des Toren. What can you tell me about them and how different were they from DON?
They were all experimental projects, stages where I was interested in a musical style/genre and in recording something associated with it. Funeralopolis was the previous name of Philosophie des Toren, and then I changed it. I can´t remember why, it was a long time ago, anyway. None of them were serious projects. The project that may have been a bit more serious was Drowned in November. I’ve learned a lot thanks to the recording process of those projects, but they never had any other purpose than to experiment. DON was created with the idea of making a serious project, and beyond an experiment in sound and composition, although keeping some parameters.
(Comrade Aleks brings us another entertaining interview, this time speaking with guitarist Guillaume of The Bottle Doom Lazy Band from France.)
Heavy as the worst hangover, dirty and frenzied as some medieval maddened crowd, desperate and rakish as a criminal on the scaffold — it is the essence of The Bottle Doom Lazy Band. They have a bloody heavy, crushing sound, impressive and insane hymn-like vocal lines, and a strong individuality and slow approach to recording sessions. The band was born in 2005, their remarkable first record was released in 2008, and new album second album Lost N’ Drunk saw the light of day only in September 2015. Yes, they’re slow and they play their sinister doom! Why is The Bottle Doom Lazy Band so slow? I don’t know… Maybe their guitarist Guillaume will give us a hint.
Salute Guillaume! We were speaking with you about four years ago and it seems that you already told us then about the second The Bottle Doom Lazy Band album… So first of all, what did you do all this time, man?
Hi Aleks, I agree that’s a long time since Blood for the Bloodking. We recorded one split EP with Children of Doom and a split LP with Void Moon from Sweden and we’re here now with a new album called Lost N’ Drunk … We have had some line-up changes too. Emeric who helped us in the past is now a permanent member on the bass. Jerome (guitar) left the band, replaced by Pierre 2 years ago. Some of us have other bands (Mantras, Pulmonary Fibrosis…). It’s not easy for us to work quickly but we don’t care about that. We’re happy with this album. That’s most important.
(In this post Andy Synn interviews Steve Dickson, the main man behind Mammothfest, whose 2015 edition took place last month in Brighton, England.)
Hello Steve. For the unenlightened amongst our readers, would you care to provide an outline of what Mammothfest is, how long it’s been going, etc?
No. I would rather shit the bed and roll in it for a week…ah shit sorry, wrong interview, yes it would be my absolute pleasure to enlighten all.
Mammothfest has been going since 2009 and our main objectives are to have a “Mammoth” outdoor metal festival in Brighton, bring the biggest bands in the world to our lovely seaside town, and support the underground bands by giving them the platforms they deserve/need to grow to become our future headliners because the big boys will not be around to play forever!
(Last Friday we had the pleasure of premiering a full stream of Providentia, the superb debut album by a mysterious Greek entity named AWE. Now, KevinP brings us a new installment in his short-interview series, in which he quizzes an anonymous member of the band.)
K: So you don’t disclose who is in the band or what roles they play. Why is that? And what can you tell us?
It is really irrelevant who is in the band or what the contribution is of each member. You have to perceive AWE as an autonomous entity or as a vessel through which we can manifest our artistic desires. It is for the above reason that we didn’t create fake personas with fancy nick-names in order to please our egos. So, the important thing for us is for the listener to be patient, dive into our music, and grasp what we want to communicate through AWE.
(Andy Synn interviews D.F., master of guitars and synthesizers for Germany’s Stellar Master Elite. To read Andy’s reviews of all the band’s albums, including their new 2015 release, go here.)
So let’s start this interview off with a simple question… how are you, and what are you up to at this precise moment?
DF: Writing this interview with the damn flu while listening to Boards of Canada. Could be worse!
(Comrade Aleks brings us another interview, this time with Julien Rour Chanut, guitarist of the French band Hangman’s Chair.)
This is one of the most nihilistic, dirty, and desperate doom outfits from France. Hangman’s Chair was born in 2005 and proved their skills with three full-length albums until now. These are hymns of outcasts, confessions of the addicted, a portrayal of crude reality from the backyard of a city’s daily life.
The reason for this interview with Julien Rour Chanut, the band’s guitarist, is the release of Hangman’s Chair’s new album This Is Not Supposed To Be Positive on Musicfearsatan Records. Another murky reflection in a cracked mirror of our lives… Another expressive art-work, another handful of depressive and realistic tunes from the underground of suburban Paris.
(Here we have another doomy interview from our Russian friend Comrade Aleks, speaking this time with Nicola “Cynar” Rossi, vocalist for Italy’s Doomraiser.)
Sometimes I think: “Stop! Never again! That was my last interview with an Italian doom band. There are a lot of good bands in other countries!” I go to bed with this thought, but everything changes when I wake up in the morning and see the horse’s head next to my pillow.
Doomraiser is one of the most heavy, most straight-out, most active and prolific doom clans from the Apennine Peninsula. They released their fourth album Reverse (Passaggio inverso) in 2015 and they are already busy preparing new songs. Somehow their frontman Nicola “Cynar” Rossi found a few minutes to answer my questions.