1.Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording and release of the new album?
V: We released “Dis Manibus” in August 2016. After that release we started to promote the album live. We played festivals like Wacken, Gothoom, Wave Gothic Treffen, we toured with Enslaved, played our first two shows in Italy etc. Besides, we started to work on new ideas. We wrote more stuff than ever before. It was a very creative time. In the beginning 2018 we signed to Napalm Records. Then, in October 2018 we started with the album-production for “When We Are Forgotten”, when we entered the Iguana Studios for the drumrecordings. There was no pressure from Napalm Records. As always: The label heard the first notes of the album, when we sent them the final Master.
2.Recently you have released a new album, musically how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?
V: In comparison to the other albums we wrote a lot of songs and ideas, much more than for any other production before. Finally, we had to decide between many songs and you may think that is a very good thing, but it is hard to find the right song/ idea if you already fall into love with these tracks. The final guideline was, to have an album that is darker and more intimate than the other album and also having fewer epic parts and historical backgrounds in the lyrics. We simply don’t want to repeat ourselves. We wrote so many long and epic songs over the years, so the time was right to try some different and new things. We wanted to challenge us a bit.
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects you explore with the newer music and also how would you describe your progress as songwriters over the years?
V: In the last albums we often used an historical background to tell stories with a message. “When We Are Forgotten” is the first album without any historical backgrounds, but much more personal and reflective. We were a bit tired of historical backgrounds in our lyrics, because the words become a bit more distant to the listener. Like a kind of a filter. Our goal was to become more intimate and darker, closer to our souls and I think we reached it.
With the years one matures as a human being. Art is like a reflection of this process. Of course, we were influenced by mid-nineties Black Metal back in the days, but we never emulated others. We were lucky enough to be able to define our very own style at a very early stage of the band.
Our goal was always to create passionate art and that special melancholic but also harsh atmosphere. We always try to get better in every every discipline: Songwriting, Production-Skills, etc. This is a never-ending process.
4.You have mentioned an interest in ancient history in previous interviews, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in this topic?
V: We are both very into the ancient Roman Empire. We love to read books, watch good documentaries about everything connected to this once so great shining empire. We are interested in the brutal campaigns back then, but also very curious about the normal, daily life of the people. For example: One of my favorite books is about the graffities in Pompeii. You can learn so much about the people who lived there. Their behaviour, their needs, their longings. As we are both very nostalgic persons we also love to visit and read about medieval ruins. To reflect about ancient times… its kind of a drug for us… a chance to flee from the nowadays superficial society.
5.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the new album cover?
V: The cover is very important for us. It is the face of the whole work and transports the feeling and meaning of the songs. As always it was a long way until we were pleased with the result, but from the beginning we had the plan to show a transformation. You could imagine that the figure is a goddess dissolving with the unknown darkness. The candles will burn down more and more and only total darkness will remain… until she is forgotten.
6.In the studio you work as a duo while you have a live line up shows, are you open to using a full band on future releases or do you prefer to work as a duo?
V: We never thought about becoming a “full band”, and I can tell you why: A wise man once said never change a running system. We have a great workflow; both of us can play several instruments, write and produce songs and there is a blind understanding between us. Sure, there are sometimes discussions going on, but that is normal and important for creative processes. We don’t want to include some more egos. Our egos are surely big enough!
7.Out of all of the live shows that the band has played over the years, which one stands out the most?
V: A show I will always remember was our first festival-show in 2009 at the Wolfszeit Festival, Germany. We expected about 80 people in front of the stage as we had no clue that lots of people already knew our band. As we prepared for the show, we recognized that the area in front of the stage was fully packed with people. We entered the stage, the sun was going down…it was magic.
The best stagecrew of all time we had at Partysan-Festival in 2014. Everything went so smooth, and as a result we were able to play a very proper show. Great festival!
8.Do you have any touring or show plans for the new album?
V: Yes, we are heading to the United Kingdom in October. Then a show in Belgium is about to follow. In November we will play shows in Germany and Spain. We are working on much more. We will keep you updated.
9.The new album was released on 'Napalm Records', how would you compare working with them to your older labels 'Seasons Of Mist' and 'Perverted Taste?
V: We had a very good time at Season of Mist, but after 10 years we felt that it is time for a change. Napalm Records an extremely good network and strongly growing social media base. They are very professional and direct, what we really appreciate. We have the feeling that they love what we do and that we do it with passion and that feels good. They do not influence our music in any way (no one ever did!), so we are still free for any decision we do. Last but not least they are speaking German what is really helpful for example in long telephone sessions. hehehe
10.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your newer music by fans of black metal?
V: Actually, the reactions are really overwhelming! I’ve got the impression that the people understand what we are doing and how we are progression. We never received so many reactions like within these days.
11.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
V:We will always have one main headline: “passion and atmosphere”, but I can’t give you an insight of future plans, because right now we are fully concentrating on the actual album.
12.What are some of the bands or musical styles the band is listening to nowadays?
V: I am into a lot of different styles. Most important thing for me is, that I feel real emotions in the music. I am totally into nearly all kinds of metal, except “modern jump metal” and keyboard-pop metal like…you know what bands I mean. Then I am a big fan of ambient music, especially dark ambient and also classical music. I am also a big Motörhead-fan, one the most important bands in my life. And yeah, I love oldschool-Blues! So, my musical taste is very diverse.
13.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
V: Thank you all very much for supporting our art. Cheers!