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Gurthang Interview

jeudi 9 juillet 2015 à 09:40
1. Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording of the new split?

The music for this split has been recorded back in autumn 2013 so there's been quite a lot going on since then. We've recorded and released our 4th album entitled "I Will Not Serve" this year. Also another split should be released within months, with Ukrainian band Moloch. It includes a b-side track from aforementioned album. We've also changed the lineup a bit, Turenn became our new drummer and we've started working on some new material together.

2. You have a split album coming out this July, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?

The musical sound differs from all of our material. Previous works were focused on funeral doom or black metal style. The music I wrote for this album wasn't supposed to be released anywhere until G.H. heard it and persuaded me into releasing it on split as Gurthang. Material on the split is more death or even blackened death oriented. It's more similiar to our latest album, however it has much more industrial touches, and the sound is noisy, harsh and raw.

3. What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?

It depends on the time in my life when I wrote those lyrics. Older lyrics were much more depressive and dark. Later they evolved into something more powerful, they're more personal, deeper yet they're still quite dark, but in a different way. I was always inspired by works of H. P. Lovecraft, and that's also type of "doom" that I often include in my lyrics, but I'm giving them more personal view. They're usually not just about one thing. There's much more in every single song than it's possible to hear at one single spin.

4. Originally the band started out as a solo project, what was the decision behind forming a full line up?

When I started the band, it was just a side-project. At that time my main band and main focus was Cosmic Despair, and Gurthang was just something else I did in the meantime. After we recorded debut album and before it's been released, we decided that Cosmic Despair will disband and that we're not going to do anything more with it, so I asked Stormalv and Sam to participate in recording sessions for new Gurthang releases, because this "project", as I wouldn't call it a band at that time, was getting more and more important to me. I started calling it a band when we were recording our third album, "Excruciato Anima Immortali", beacuse that was the time that I let everyone arrange their own parts. Before that I was telling everyone what exactly I wanted them to play. After I let everyone do their own in composing area it turned out this was the best possible decision. Everyone does their best to make their parts as good as possible and I just control if it goes in the direction that I want it to go. And so far I didn't have to ask anyone to rearrange their parts.

5. I know that the bands name came from the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien, how does this name fit in with the musical style that you play?

Gurthang was the sword of Turin, it was a witness of its master's disaster, madness and failure. It was a blade that took away his life. This story reflects into lyrical themes of our band. It's about insanity, despair, self-destruction and suicide. You can find all those elements in some of our songs.

6. So far the band has yet to do a live show, are there any plans for any shows in the future?

No, there are no plans for that. Maybe someday, but definitely not now. It's impossible to arrange, as all of us live in different places, we all have our jobs and responsibilities. I can't expect everyone in the band to leave their lives and do a tour. I've had an idea to organize one show in my town, with different people, but I just didn't feel like it would be Gurthang anymore so I gave it up.

7. You are on a split with 'Beyond Life' a band that shares 2 of the same members, how would you sat their musical style differs from the one that is presented with 'Gurthang'?

Beyond Life performs completely different style of music that Gurhang. While Gurthang is more doom/black oriented, Beyond Life is much more about improvisation, experimenting and emotions coming from the music than the music itself. Keep in mind, that it evolved from dark ambient genre which has its own rules and reasons. Also I am not in charge of Beyond Life, I joined it long time after the band was formed. G.H. joined Gurthang some time later, first as rhythm guitarist, but now he's in charge of ambient parts we use in our music. Basically saying, in Beyond Life I'm just doing what I'm asked to do. Of course, if you listen carefully you'll find some similarities in my songwriting, but for me it's just two different things.

8. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black and doom metal?

I'd say we get a great feedback and interest from different places in the world. Definitely much bigger that we'd expect. I remember when I was looking for a label to release our third album and I wrote to some Japanese label. I'm still surprised that they've already knew who we were. Although we didn't have much promotion at that time. Sometimes I get messages or emails from people around the world saying that they bought our CD and they really liked it - and that's always great to hear. In the beginning I didn't mean to make Gurthang recognized or famous, and I still don't care that much about it. We did it for ourselves, but it's always great to hear that somebody somewhere likes it and wants to hear some more.

9. What is going on with some of the other bands or musical projects these days that some of the band members are a part of?

Two years ago Stormalv recorded an album with Syrian gothic band Ecliptic Dawn, who's ran by our first keyboardist. He also had some solo projects I don't know much about it. Vojfrost keeps running his both projects, atmospheric black Voin Grim, which is also the reason I got to know him and folk Voin. Tureen keeps playing with his band Unbowed and has a couple of more projects going on I think. Me and G.H. have a couple of side projects going on. The biggest one is Beyond Life of course, but there's also Czarna Rozpacz, about which you should hear some more in the near future. I also perform vocals in Polish black metal band Man o'Moon Faces.

10. Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

We will go more into maybe a bit simplier but definitely deeper and more complex sound, it's hard to explain. We have a concept and a couple of new songs written, and we will see how it ends up. I really can't say anything more about it right now.

11. What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

Biggest impact on our music had Finnish doom metal band Dolorian, which I'm a huge fan of. Of course it would be a crime if I didn't mention the masters of Thergothon. But apart from that we listen to and get inspired by some music that's not related to metal, for example Pink Floyd, which I consider as the greatest band of all time, Dead Can Dance or some classical music, like Wagner, Chopin or Beethoven. As for now apart from what I've already mentioned, I'm getting more into some Polish post-black and recently I've returned to some funeral doom bands that I haven't listened to for quite a long time.

12. Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

Support the underground, there are lots of great bands that are still there undiscovered and waiting for their moment. Thanks for the interview!

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Kaeck/Stormkult/Folter Records/2015 CD Review

jeudi 9 juillet 2015 à 09:29

  Kaeck  are  a  band  from  the  Netherlands  that  is  a  super  group  of  some  sorts  consisting of  members  from Sammath,  Kjeld,  and  Noordelingen  and  plays  a  very  raw  and  old  school  form of  black/war  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2015  album  "Stormkult"  which  was  released  in  August  by  Folter  Records.

  A  very  fast  and  raw  old  school  black/war  metal  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  a  great  amount  of  blast  beats  and  grim  screams  and  the  music  is  very  heavily  rooted  in  the  90's  second  wave  style  and  also  brings  in  the  atmospheric  elements of  that  era  at  times  along  with  soem  of  the  riffing  adding  in  small  amounts  of  melody.

  All  of  the  songs  sound  like  they  could  of  easily  been  recorded  and  released  20  years  ago  and  some  of  the  tracks  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  a small  amount  of  synths  can  be  hear d  at  times  in  the  background  while  the  vocals,  drums  and  guitars  dominate  most  of  the music  and  on  one  of  the  tracks  the  vocals  almost  sound  melodic  while  still  being  grim  at  the  same  time and  some of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  one  song  also  brings  in  a  brief  use  of  spoken  word  parts.

  Kaeck  plays  a  style  of  black/war  metal  that  is  very  old  school  and  atmospheric  and  has  more  in  common  with  the  90's  era  and  stays  away  from  any  type  of  modern  sounds,  the  production  sounds  very raw  and  old  school  while  the  lyrics  are  written  in  Dutch  and  cover  darkness  and  war themes.

  In  my  opinion  Kaeck  are  a  very  great  sounding  old  school  black/war  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "De  Kult"  and  "Wormvloed".  8  out  of  10.



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Survival/Viranesir/Unity/Solaris/Merdumgiriz 2015 Split Album Review

jeudi 9 juillet 2015 à 07:20

  This  is  a  review  of  a  split  album  between  U.S.A's  "Survival  and  Turkey's  Viranesir  called  "Unity/Solaris"  which  was  released  by  Merdumgiriz  and  we  will  start  off  the  review  with  Survival  a  band  that  plays  a  mixture  of  hardcore  and  thrash.

  Their  side  of  the split  starts  out  with  a  very  heavy  and  old  school  hardcore  sound  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  sound  very  powerful  and  a  few  seconds  later  clean  singing  vocals  are  added  into  the  music  and  after  awhile  elements  of  thrash  are  added  onto  the  recording  and  when  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a  more  melodic  metal  fashion  and  after  awhile  the  vocals  start  utilizing  more  aggression  along  with  some  back  up  gang  shouts  being  utilized  at  times  and a  couple  of  the  songs  also  brings  in  a  brief  use  of  clean  playing,  the  production  sounds  very  poweful w hile  the  lyrics  cover  dark  and  real  life  themes.

  In  my opinion  Survival  are  a  very  mediocre  melodic  mixture  of  hardcore  and  thrash  and  sound  like  a  generic  one  hit  wonder  from  the  early 90's,  and  I  can  not  really recommend  them  to  anyone  unless  they  like  anything  good  or  bad  that  was  released  in  94.  5  out  of  10.

  Next  up  is  Viranesir  a  band  from  Turkey  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  an  experimental mixture  of  black  and  doom  metal.  

  Their  side  of  the  split  starts  out  with  grim spoken  word  parts,  bass  guitars  and  dark  sounding synths  and clean  singing  vocals  are  also  used  on  a  regular  basis  and  the  songs  also  mix  in  the  heaviness  of  doom  metal  and  after  awhile  the  vocals  start  adding in  more  black  metal  elements  and  when  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  very  dark,  depressive  and  melodic  sounding  and  some  of  the  songs  also  bring  in  avant  garde  and  goth  elements  and  they  also do  a  cover  of  Peste  Noire's  "Night  Of  The  Mare",  the  production  sound s very  dark,  raw  and  heavy  while  the  lyrics  cover  dark  and  depressive  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Viranesir  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  experimental,  black  and  doom  metal,  you  should  check  out  their  side  of  the  split.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Dream's  House"  and  "Night  Of  The  Nare".  8  out  of  10.

  In  conclusion  the  first  half  of  the  split  was  not  my  thing,  but  the  other  half  is  worth  checking  out  for  the  songs  Viranesir  bring  onto t he  split. 

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Archemoron/Sulphur And Fire/Cryptica Productions/2013 CD Review

mercredi 8 juillet 2015 à 08:54

  Archemoron  are  a  band  from  Greece  that  plays  an  epic  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of t heir  2015  album  "Sulphur  And  Fire"  which  was  released  by  Cryptica  Productions.

  A  very  fast,  raw  and  melodic  black  metal  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  a  touch  of  death  metal  and  after  a  few  seconds  the  music  speeds  up  and  adds  in  blast  beats  along  with  some  grim  screams  and  the  band  also  brings  in  blackened  death  metal  style  guitar  solos  and  leads  in  some  parts  of  the  songs.

  Throughout  the  recording  there  is  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  clean  playing  can  also  be  heard  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording  and  when  synths  are  utilized  they  give  the  music  more  of  an  atmospheric  feeling  and  a  great  portion  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length.
Sounds  of  nature  at  times  can  be  heard  in  some  of  the  songs  at  times  along  with  a  small  amount  of  clean  singing  vocals  and  as  the  album  progresses  the  solos  and  leads  start  utilizing  more  melodies  while  some  of  the  faster  riffs  bring  in  more  of  a  raw  and  old  school  black  metal  feeling  to  the  tracks  and  a  couple  of  the  songs  also  brings  in  a  brief  use  of  acoustic  guitars  and  they  also  bring  in  a  short  instrumental  before  making  a  return  back  to  a  heavier musical  direction  on  the  remaining  tracks. 

  Archemoron  plays  a  style  of  black  metal  that  is  very  aggressive,  heavy and  epic  sounding  along  with  some  atmospheric  elements  and  also  brings in  a  touch  of  blackened  death  metal  to  their  musical  style  as  will  as  being  heavily  influenced  by  the  Nordic  style  at  times,  the  production  sounds  very  powerful  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness,  occultism  and  anti  christian  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Archemoron  are  a  very  great  sounding  epic  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Across  The Seven  Seas  of  My  Soul"  "Ancient  Callings"  "Preachers  Of  Heaven,  Maggots  Of  Earth"  and  "Lacerate  the  Mind'.  8  out  of  10.

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Unearthly/U.S Canada Record Deal Promo/Redifining Darkness Records/2015 EP Review

mardi 7 juillet 2015 à 07:55

  Unearthly  are  a  band  from  Brazil  that  started  out in  a  pure  black  metal  direction  but  have evolved  into  more  of  a  blackened  death  metal  band  over  the  years  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  U.S/Canada  Record  Deal  promo  which  was  released  by  Redefining  Darkness  Records  and  consists  of  4  songs  from  last  years  self  titled  full  length  and  a  Sepultura  cover.

  Drum  beats  and  a  very  heavy  blackened  death  metal  sound  starts  off  the  promo  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  growling  vocals  and  you  can  also  hear  some  melody  in  the  music  at  times  and  the  songs  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  the  music  brings  in  a  lot  of  elements  of  the  Polish  extreme  metal  sound  into  their  musical  style.

  At  times  the  music  brings  in  a  tribal  feeling  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  when  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  in  more  of  a  chaotic  death  metal  direction  while  also  being  very  melodic  in  certain  sections  of  the  tracks  and  one  of  the  songs  also  brings  in  elements  of  voodoo  music  as  well  as  a  few  spoken  word  parts  and  they  also  close  the  promo  with  a  cover  of  Sepultura's  "We  Who  Are  Not  As  Others".

  Unearthly  plays  a  musical  style  that  is  mostly  rooted  in  black   and  death  metal  with  the  focus  more  on  the  later  as  well  as  adding  in  elements  of  Brazilian  tribal  music,  the  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  cover  Occultism,  Anti  Christianity  and  Quimanda  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Unearthly  are  a  very  great  sounding  blackened  death  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  promo.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "The  Sin  Offering"  and  "Eshu".  8  out  of  10.


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