(Comrade Aleks conducted the following interview with Monolith Wielder, whose debut album will be released by Argonauta Records on October 17, 2016.)
Tight and powerful, Monolith Wielder breaks into the American doom stoner scene with their loud and savage debut full-length. Their riffs are overflowing with energy and fuzz, and they have enough enthusiasm to perform their songs at full capacity. Monolith Wielder was built on the stones of the Maryland doom scene and fed with Pittsburgh’s very soil; they know how to play it heavy and straightforward.
Break the Chains! Lift Your Eyes! And reach Illumination!
(John Sleepwalker of Avopolis.gr returns to us with this interview of Youth Code’s astonishing frontwoman Sara Taylor. The band’s latest album, Commitment To Complications was reviewed on this site here.)
Youth Code is the most unconventional, yet simultaneously accessible, EBM band that would break into your house and smash your TV in pieces. By drawing their inspiration from old industrial to hardcore punk music, their blend of influences deliberately exhales remarkable amounts of intensity in ways rather provoking to all human senses. Sarah Taylor, however, was kind enough to answer our questions on the band’s not too distant past, as well as their current goals and creative focus on their music. Without denying, of course, how the internet is partialy responsible nowadays for a big loss of magic in our music.
(Karina Cifuentes returns to us with this interview of Norwegian musician Per Valla, founder of Vredehammer and Valla and former member of Abbath.)
Tell us about yourself, your musical career so far…
I was born and raised in a small town in the north of Norway called Mo i Rana. Here I lived a typical small-town life with typical small-town friends and typical small-town dreams. When I was around 15 years old I injured my knee, and my dream of becoming a professional football player instantly died.
That same day after leaving the hospital, I went to our typical small-town music store, and the first thing I saw when I entered was a VHS with the amazing John Petrucci on the cover — entitled Rock Discipline. I bought the fucker and from that day on I started practicing guitar and my focus on being a professional football player quickly turned into working towards becoming a professional metal guitarist, preferably lead guitarist.
(Comrade Aleks interviewed the three men in Finland’s Caskets Open — Timo Ketola, Antti Ronkainen, and Pyry Ojala.)
Saint Vitus didn’t invent the wheel back then in the ‘80s, but the environment formed their sound and it was natural that one of the first doom metal bands had some punk influences in their songs. However, this mix didn’t turn to be a trend, and Caskets Open from Helsinki sound like a pretty original band.
This trio mix gloomy doom metal and an aggressive punk aesthetic, and it seems that after two full-length albums they’re going to go deeper down in their explorations and add more savage tunes in their songs. Their second record To Serve the Collapse was released two years ago, so I needed some fresh news from the band first-hand. I sent a request to Caskets Open, and they answered.
(Comrade Aleks has been interviewing again, and brings us this new conversation with Argentina’s devilish Dragonauta.)
Dragonauta is a satanic extravaganza band from the edge of the world – Buenos Aires to be precise. They’ve been doing their evil deals since 1999 but after four full-length occult works only one founding member is left – the guitarist Daniel Libedinsky. He’s the author of most of their sinister riffs.
Three years have passed since Dragonauta released the Omega Pentagram album, a collection of savage and satanic stoner doom tracks. Today Daniel with renewed and a strengthened lineup continues to do his work finishing the fifth album, and Lucien Kurgan (vocals, bass) brings the news about it. He promises further mutations of Dragonauta’s sound, so let’s hear some details of it.
(We present Austin Weber’s interview of the Swedish band Theory In Practice, with news about a new release, among other things.)
Some of you all may recall that legendary Swedish progressive death metal band Theory In Practice became active again last year and put out a – comeback, Evolving Transhumanism, which I covered here at NCS. As an über-Theory In Practice fan/geek, I had planned to follow up that post by interviewing the band about their unexpected return, but that got delayed due to my dumb brain forgetting to make it happen. But finally our brief interview was conducted, and here’s your chance to catch up on all things Theory In Practice related!
*Questions 1-6 were answered by Andreas Lyngmo (vocals) and Question 7 was answered by Peter Lake (Guitar/Bass),, with both joining in the answer to No. 3.
(John Sleepwalker of Avopolis returns to NCS as we share his interview of Andreas “Heljarmadr” Vingbäck, mainman of the Swedish black metal villains known as Grá.)
Sweden’s Grá is a notorious black metal outfit that makes no compromises in aesthetic, despite a subtle evolution unfolding one step at a time. They form the kind of entity that’s hopelessly marked for Death, but Death is only a part of their evolution, according to a rather interesting interview with their mainman Andreas “Heljarmadr” Vingbäck.
It is now obvious that their latest opus, Ending, simply marks the final part of their Charon suite, as well as a crossroad towards new, unexplored territories. The band is already looking forward to hitting the road to promote their latest album, by scheduling a short European tour consisted of seven dates in total. Here is the schedule, followed by the interview:
(Comrade Aleks returns to NCS with another interesting interview. This time he talks with the Italian band Haunted.)
Haunted appeared in Italian Catania recently, and Twin Earth Records has already released their self-titled debut album. I was lucky enough to get it beforehand, and I must tell you – it’s something! Take Windhand stoner doom and crop their endless monotonous riffs, retaining those hypnotic female vocals and overall compositional frame; then add some charms and… and whatever else Haunted puts into their songs?… Yes, I had to find out their secret ingredients and I welcome you to share the pleasure of digging deeper in the Haunted territories. The whole band is here to tell about their brand new work.
(Our Russian interviewing fiend Comrade Aleks is back, this time presenting a conversation with Paul Kearns, vocalist of the British band Solstice.)
Solstice is a kind of unique phenomenon of the British doom scene. Being raised in 1990, the band built their reputation with two excellent professional albums, Lamentations (1994) and New Dark Ages (1998), and also with the extreme slowness with which Solstice write new songs. You’ll easily understand the situation if you remember that the band’s only original member today is the guitarist Richard M. Walker, who’s an incorrigible perfectionist. However, since 1998 the band have released a pair of splits and a bunch of compilations, though there were also demos and one EP recorded in 2013 (Death’s Crown Is Victory) with Paul Kearns on vocals.
As the band slowly strides toward their next full-length album, or maybe just to their next song, we got in contact with Paul and had a pretty cool and informative conversation, though it took some time, as does everything connected with Solstice.
(Comrade Aleks returns to NCS with this interview of Butch Balich, vocalist of the Pennsylvania heavy doom band Argus.)
Despite the Lovecraftian monstrous form of giant Argus who dwells on every artwork of this band, the Argus outfit doesn’t exactly resemble such a brutal creature. Since the year 2005 they have played a solemn and stoical blend of doom and heavy metal, bringing down on listeners stories of endurance and damnation.
The band regularly play live shows, and usually Argus do not make their listeners wait for too long before giving them some new music periodically, but three years have gone by since the release of their third full-length Beyond the Martyrs, and it’s time to ask the obvious question about new material the band has to offer. This question is well-timed, as Argus’ voice Butch Balich has some important news for you.