(Comrade Aleks brings us this interview of Michał Śliwa of the Polish atmospheric doom band Echoes of Yul.)
Echoes of Yul (Opole, Poland) was started as an instrumental doom project with some experimental influences that give their first self-titled album some unique and strange atmosphere. Time has passed, and with each new release Echoes of Yul became stranger and more eclectic. Their second LP brought even more researches with dark electric sound and haunting samples, so I was not surprised that their EP Tether came with a bunch of remixes amidst a few new tracks. Even the name of the new drone-like track “Asemic”, which was included in a 2014 split-CD by Echoes Of Yul and Thaw, means “a wordless writing”, as the project remains an instrumental one. But Michał, the man behind Echoes, has some words to share, so we did this interview a couple of days ago.
Salute Michal! What’s going on in a life of Echoes of Yul? Did the sales of your last album “Tether” go well enough?
Hello Aleksey. Echoes of Yul is very busy – as always. I am recording and arranging a new album, doing remix work etc. In September I released a split album with Thaw on the Instant Classic label.
Regarding the sales of “Tether” I’m not sure whether Zoharum Records are satisfied with the results. I am aware that it is niche music with a small number of listeners, and it’s a good thing that Zoharum is rather a child of love to music than a business venue, so I haven’t heard any complaints. But you know in a wider view streaming music, downloads, etc. is slowly killing small labels. I totally respect their passion to increase their catalogue with new bands. They put a lot of effort and cash into promoting, packaging, and discovering hidden treasures.
(In this post Comrade Aleks presents an interview with Lukáš Kudrna of the Czech doom band Quercus, whose latest album was released this past summer.)
The Czech doom scene is an unexplored and dark segment of the underground. The honorable Dissolving of Prodigy have gone, and such stubborn newcomers as Et Moriemur are a very rare example, so I was very surprised by the fact of a new Quercus release. This project has a thirteen-year-long history, and its last work Postvorta was released in 2007. One way or another Quercus has returned with another piece of avant-garde and enigmatic funeral doom. Lukáš Kudrna, a constant author of Quercus, is ready to tell the story of his new record Sfumato.
Hail Lukas! Quercus was silent for about 7 years. What is the reason for such a long hiatus and returned the band to activity?
Hallo Aleks. I and my brother in doom — we recorded lot of albums with our main band UMBRTKA, almost 10 CDs in 7 years. And then we had a break for a short time with Umbrtka, so we made slower drums and a new album started to rise… Someone said that Quercus is a slowed down Umbrtka.
(Our Russian contributor Comrade Aleks brings us this interview with Zdenek Nevělík, vocalist of Et Moriemur, whose second album Ex Nihilo In Nihilum was released last month by Solitude Productions.)
As Solitude Productions released the second full-length of Czech death doom band Et Moriemur, I remembered my old promise to get in get in contact with Zdenek Nevělík, the band’s voiceman. Ex Nihilo In Nihilum sounds stronger and more mature, considering the band’s debut record Cupio Dissolvi, so why wouldn’t we take a glance into the Czech underground?
Hail Zdenek! How are you man? Et Moriemur has a fresh record Ex Nihilo In Nihilum, are you happy with that fact?
You can bet on it Aleks! Some songs on Ex Nihilo were written already before the completion of our first full-length album Cupio Dissolvi so it’s a circle that comes to a close. The new CD is similar in some ways to its predecessors but in others inevitably different. We tried to write a compact album with a definite sound and theme. Of course there are many variations but I think as a whole Ex Nihilo is more cohesive than Cupio. In any case we are very very proud of it and hope that doom fans will like it as well.
(Wil Cifer brings us an interview with Primordial’s main man, Nemtheanga.)
I had the honor of recently getting the chance to catch up with Primordial’s lead singer Alan Averill and talk about the success of the new album (Where Greater Men Have Fallen), the pitfalls of touring in America, and the state of black metal. It went a little something like this.
Wil- So this is your 8th album. How has the songwriting process changed from the first album to the eighth?
Alan – In no way. The same thing. The only difference is there is not an old school tape machine in the middle of the room. We write in our rehearsal room. We do send files to each other over the internet and tell each other what to do. We do what we do. We do it when it feels right. Not when we need an advance from the record company.
Wil- You changed producers this go around and recorded out in the Grouse Lodge; how was that different from how you have done things in the past ?
Alan- It is more of fact that every two albums you need to change producers and change studios. You need to change the routine. Routine is death. It is very important to step out of your comfort zone to create.
There are some bands for whom you need no long introduction. British extreme death/doom metal band Esoteric is one of those. In this interview, which was kindly offered to us by Evita Hofmane and Haralds Strapans of the Latvian P3lican e-zine, Esoteric’s guitarist and vocalist Greg Chandler speaks about life and music being two inseparable things.
In the beginning there was Word, and the Word was Esoteric. Your band has existed for more than 20 years now. Maybe let’s start with a short overview – what is Esoteric?
Esoteric formed in July 1992. We released our first demo in the summer of 1993, which led to a recording deal with Aesthetic Death records. Our first album was released in autumn 1994 and the band has remained active to this day. Now in our 22nd year, we have released 6 albums (4 of which are double albums). Our music has progressed and evolved over time, but the main essence and direction has remained the same. To create, dark, unique music and soundscapes without any limitations in mind.
(We bring you KevinP’s interview of Ben Pakarinen, vocalist/guitarist for Finland’s Coprolith, whose second album Death March was released this past spring by Violent Journey Records.)
K: So you’ve recently returned from a tour in China. Is this your 3rd time playing there?
B: Yes, we are back from China. It was Coprolith’s second time touring there. Last fall we toured with my other band, Antagonist Zero.
K: Seems like you have a fairly big following to tour there twice. Does China give you more “love” than Europe?
B: Yeah the shows are awesome and the crowds are crazy indeed. And this time we also released our latest album, Death March, as a special edition with 3 bonus tracks. But we have also toured a lot in Europe, the Baltics, and Russia. I think when it’s a good show and good crowd, it doesn’t matter which country it is.
(In this post we present an interview of The Morningside from Moscow, Russia, conducted by A. Strunitzkij and introduced by our contributor Comrade Aleks. All photos are by Olga Goleva.)
We could discuss for a damned long time how much of Katatonia and Agalloch has left the works of The Morningside since they released their first album The Wind, The Trees And The Shadows of the Past in 2007. But the new album by this band from far Moscow Letters From The Empty Towns of this band from far Moscow only pours oil onto the flames of this controversy. Highly energetic, fierce, and ghostly cold, this album returns us to the dark and melancholic world of The Morningside.
The whole band is here today. Let me introduce you to The Morningside with its most constant (and I hope – eternal) line-up. They are Igor Nikitin (vocals, guitars), Ilya Egorychev (bass), Sergey Chelyadinov (guitars), and Boris Sergeev (drums). I would like to thank my comrade-at-metal A.Strunitzkij for this interview.
(Comrade Aleks returns to NCS with an interview of Luciano Marchisio, bass player for the Argentinian band Montenegro.)
Montenegro is a psychedelic stoner band from Argentina who mix a bunch of unusual musical and conceptual elements in their songs. Their first full-length album Confusos Recuerdos Después Del Coma has shown the band’s best as of 2013, but a few months ago Montenegro took part in split-album with Russian psychedelic band The Grand Astoria that reaches new heights in their explorations.
Their new epic track “El Matadero” (“Slaughterhouse”) perfectly holds the main motive of this split-release, complementing the musical conception of their Russian mates and evolving their own ideas in new ways. Luciano Marchisio (bass) represents Montenegro today for our readers and tells us the story of four gauchos from Argentina.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The new album by Sweden’s Just Before Dawn is a killer. Its name is The Aftermath and I reviewed it here. It’s out now on Chaos Records and you can order it here. It’s also available on Bandcamp, and there’s a full stream of the whole tasty thing at the end of this post. But first, enjoy KevinP’s Q&A with Just Before Dawn’s main man Anders Biazzi.
1. So, you’re back for round two. Tell us what is different this time around?
This time the album is more well-written, I think. There are more people working on it, around 24 guys laid down their shit for this album. Otherwise there are no changes: war and steamrolling devestation.
2. What was your favorite collaboration and why?
I think it would be “Lightning War”. It’s a really powerful track with great vocals from Dave Ingram and great whammy leads from Rick Rozz. A real steamrolling track, Bolt Thrower style!
(In this post we welcome back metal interviewer Karina Cifuentes. In this post she talked with Dagon of the black metal band Inquisition during the Under the Black Sun festival in Germany this past summer.)
Inquisition is a pretty special band for me. I got my first Inquisition tape when I was a child, I was 13. It had a great impact on me on many levels. It was pretty surreal to finally get to talk to Dagon in the woods outside Berlin after so many years. We did this interview in Spanish, so have that in mind.
Inquisition started in South America, how did that influence the band?
I was really young when I moved to Colombia. I was 11 years old at that time. I think the social environment had an impact on me. I was there in the 80′s when the drug-related violence was at its worst. That kind of violence is what Black and Thrash reflect.
There were some metal bands from that time that had an impact on me. Colombian bands like Parabellum, Reencarnacion, inspired me a lot. I took those influences and combined them with classics like Venom and Bathory. But more than anything it was the discipline. It is hard to believe, but Colombian musicians are very disciplined. Colombian culture is pretty strict, at school and everywhere, so it shaped my character. I also took Classic guitar lessons for 8 years with Ciceron Marmolejo, he is pretty renowned there. Through him I learned that there is a spiritual side when it comes to playing.