1.Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording of the new album?
Germán: We have a pandemic at the moment so it has been natural for us to start writing some new material and look at some new ideas. Me and the guitarist Daniel likes to push ourselves.
Per: Yeah, mostly writing new songs and making plans around the album release. We also recently shot some stuff for a music video which is being edited as I write this.
2.You have a new album coming out in July, musically how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?
Germán: This new material is really good and for me as a drummer it has been a thrill to play the drum parts. Which differs a lot from the predemo stage we had before. The music has changed quite a bit. More darker and sinister.
Per: Our music has changed a lot during the years, while still keeping it in a black metal vein. Compared to our 2017 album I’d agree with Germán that it has more malicious feel to it. Also I’ll add that it’s more varied with fast and heavy parts. The previous album, while still having some variation, mostly was more speed oriented. This could probably be attributed to that our main songwriter, Joel, left the band at the time of releasing our debut The Angel of Light. This led to bassist Ghiaur picking up the axe (literally) and sharing the composing with Daniel, who had written a couple of songs for the debut.
3.A lot of the lyrics on the new album cover 'Norse Mythology' themes, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in this topic?
Per: Well, on some of the songs there are themes from Swedish folklore and some mythology elements. I don’t practice the old religion, but I prefer that viewpoint. Scandinavia (and, well, the whole world) would have been better off if christianity and its later malign incarnation never came. Satanic lyrics can be enjoyable for sure, but heathen themes feel more down to earth and real. Using the mythology in the lyrics is in part to keep it alive, so it is not forgotten. It’s a rich lore to pick ideas from and I wanted to incorporate some of that into Burning Darkness while not deviating too much from the feel of Joel’s lyrics from the first album.
4.Some of your other lyrics have also touches on Satanism and Anti Christian themes, do you have an interest in the left hand path and dark arts?
Germán: I live my life to the fullest. Whether it is a left hand path or not. I live my life the way I want to. Religion sickens me because I am from a country that Catholicism is the biggest thing. I left that religion when I was 13 years old. I will not consider myself as a satanist. Just a simple man with different interest.
Per: No, not really. Black magic sure is fascinating, but I’m not much of a believer in the supernatural. Joel, who made the lyrics for all but one song on The Angel of Light, wrote about fallen angels, hell and damnation. I never discussed it with him, but to me it felt more like a manifestation of anti christian sentiments rather than religious devotion.
5.What are some of the other lyrical topics and subjects the band has explored over the years with your music?
Per: The band has been in existence off and on for over twenty years and I’d be the first to admit that many songs have lyrics of dubious quality. Many past and present members have contributed to the writing of lyrics and thus the topics have varied a lot. In the beginning it was murder, monsters, hell and horror. It was witch trials, grief, loss, anti-christianity and mythology. Pretty much any “metal” subject under the sun. And that’s all before we even made the first album.
6.The band has also broken up on a couple of occasions, what was the cause of the splits and also the decision to reform?
Germán: The band was divided in two sections during 2003-2005. It was me and the old guitarist. J.B. We wanted to play heavier music. More dark and sinister. Unfortunately we did not agree on that. So the band split. I did not want to quit so I found other musicians and tried that. But it did not work. So I took a break instead. In 2009 me and J.B. wanted to close down the band for good and we had a goal that it was to record one final demo. We did and we kept playing instead.
Per: I, together with guitarist Ville Andersson were the ones who left around 2003. I frankly have a hard time remembering the exact reasons now. Feels very long ago. But, yeah. Something about musical differences. Ville went on to form Mortifera (swe), which I soon joined. Musically it was not entirely unlike Burning Darkness. We did lots of gigs and released an EP titled Sorgestadens Nycklar. Other than that I mostly focused on my humoristic black metal project Svartur Dödur until 2014 when I was asked to rejoin Burning Darkness for the recording of The Angel of Light.
7.Originally the band was called 'Ghazurz Burzum', what was the cause of the name change and also the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Buring Darkness'?
Germán: If I recall we wanted a more international name. The name came from one of the founders of the band. Who was interested in Lord of The Rings Black Speech.
Per: Right! Founding member Josephine wanted to call the band that. Me (and maybe a few others in the band) were opposed to having “Burzum” in the name. It is of course too synonymous with a the project of a certain Monsieur Vikernes. I love Burzum, but it would be like calling your band Black Metallica or Infernal Iron Maiden. Ghazurz Burzum supposedly means Burning Darkness in orcish. I think it was Mathias, our first bass player, who said: “why don’t we just call ourselves Burning Darkness then?” And so it was.
8.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the new album cover?
Per: Ghiaur came up with the idea of using a bat to put on band merch sometime after releasing the first album. The idea was for the bat to symbolise fire and darkness, thus fitting the band name. He made a rough sketch and asked me to make to make a drawing, since I like to draw. I did and we made some merch with that bat. When I was drafting the lyrics for the Dödens Makt album I thought; why not write about the bat? So I created a little mythology around the character and two songs became about him. Chiropteran Demon and In The Shadow Of Webbed Wings. We wanted to put the character on the cover, but to have a much better artist than me make it. I knew about Łukasz Jaszak who agreed to create the artwork. He made his own version of the bat and we were not disappointed. I think it looks great!
9.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?
Per: There’s been so many gigs. In the olden days I remember a short gig at Runan, Täby Kyrkby in 2003 was really good. More recently I’d definitely say all of the gigs we did on our short Romanian tour 2019 went real well and we had great responses from the audience. Also, in (I think) late 2019, at Copperfields, Stockholm. We were set to play with Rimfrost and Thyrgrim, but both bands had to cancel. A lot of people showed up and were much more enthusiastic than what’s normal in Sweden. We ended up playing an extended set with great response and they just kept asking for more!
While we recently have been discussing getting some stage props other than a backdrop or the projection display we experimented with in Romania, our stage show has always been pretty spartan. We just focus on delivering a raw and intense performance. Let the music do the talking so to speak. There’s not much of corpse paint, fire and blood everywhere. Sounds like fun though!
10.The band was formed in 1999 and while there was a few demo's you also waited until 2017 to release your first full length, can you tell us a little bit more about the long wait?
Germán: The long wait was because of the line-up changes we had. Until me and J.B. wanted to record an album. We also wanted to have a new guitarist We did find Daniel Wennersten. I have known the guy from many years ago. I was also stunned about his guitar skills. I wanted him in the band. So I asked if he was interested. He did understand the music we wanted to create and so on.
Per: I can’t add to this since I rejoined to record vocals when the first album was almost completed.
11.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black metal?
Germán: Well I don´t know. Someone likes it and some don´t. But for the people who has seen us live do like our music. For us it is a boost when the audience like it.
Per: Yes, the response to our gigs is very positive. The first album got positive response as well, but sadly didn’t get all the attention we think it deserved. Dödens Makt is, in my opinion, even better. Better by a lot. We hope that our collaboration with Non Serviam Records will help get the new album into the ears of lots and lots of metal heads out there as we think people are sure to like it.
12.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?
Germán: I play in two bands. One is called Vokodlok and the other one is Nazghor. In Vokodlok I am joined by Burning Darkness guitarist Ghiaur. We are going to release a full length album.
Per: I am the vocalist of death metal band Circle of Chaos. We have recently finished a new full length album and looking at alternatives as to how we are going to release it. My other projects are in a dormant state for the time being. It is unclear if they’re going to be revived someday.
13.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
Germán: We are hoping for bigger gigs with the band.
Per: If you listen to The Angel Of Light and Dödens Makt you can hear our sound has progressed. I can’t prophesize too far into the future, but the new material that’s taking form now is continuing in the vein of Dödens Makt. Black metal with a ominous, almost doomy feel. Still without forgetting to be fast. Meaning we have more to come in the near future.
14.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?
German: I listen to all kind of music. From Blackmetal to VGM (Videogame music) I am really into piano stuff also. I love music for what it is. I have never closed my doors for inspiration.
Per: I’m a metalhead, but of course I don’t limit myself to only metal. I grew up on mainly thrash and black. Though these years I mostly listen to metal from the 70s and 80s. What inspired me concerning Burning Darkness might be bands like Dissection, Marduk, Mörk Gryning, Månegarm, Unanimated, Necrophobic and early Siebenbürgen. That sort of music.
15.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Germán : Buy our album and support us and Non Serviam Records, If you see us on the street. Say hi. We are just a couple of guys that enjoys good music and people.
Per: Kampen mot gud og hvitekrist er igang!