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Kaldvard Interview

mardi 12 novembre 2019 à 11:37
1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?
1. If we were to explain Kaldvard to potential new fans we would tell them that the we play heavy and old school, but black riffs and that we are in love with melodic lead guitar and shifts through rhythm with the drums to give power to parts of the song etc. We are also a bit more melodious than straight forward plain metal. Take "Fossegrimens Pant"; this was our title track on the first album. Kaldr was struggling with the whole song, making it work etc. When he finally was able to sort the song out, he was thinking "uhm, this song needs a fiddle.". He called an old classmate who he knew played the fiddle, and she, Silje Vevle, added to the song this amazing tunes. Gave the song a whole new level. We still remembers the chills we got while recording.  So we have some soft spots here and there. We like to do our best with what we got, and we think we are at that point now that we can say that we did.
The band is 3 guys. Kaldr and Galge had worked together before as security guards. So when Kaldr recorded a riff in 2017 that he thought could be something, Galge was the one who got to listen to it, mainly to give his opinion on the riff. But ended up recording vocals on the whole shabang, when the song was done. So thats when Kaldvard was born. We made one more song after that to see if we could/should work together. And we could...! Very much so. So, the thoughts of an album was almost immediately put to life. Or, at least EP. But since Kaldr found himself  in this amazing "drive force", an album was the right thing to do. Too much riffs not to go all the way.

2.In November you have a new album coming out musically how does it differ from the recording you had released in 2018?
2. Yes. November it will finally happen! New album! Just a little bit over one year since the first. So, how will it differ from the first. Well, the recordings are "better", in that sense that everybody is learning new stuff. And since the first one we have bought a new DAW (music production), new midi drums, new guitar plugins, new guitar as well, we got awesome work on the lyrics, a new bass player (on the last album Kaldr was also the bass player), better programming, better understanding, new mix and mastering plugins etc etc. W. Studios (Egill Wessel Nyheim) who mixed us are using a whole new setup, and giving us this modern but still old sound. With all this new stuff we feel like we can do anything. So, bottom line probably should be better production over all.

3.Some of the lyrics go into the witch trials of Norway and Denmark during the 16th and 17th century, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in this historical event?
3. Our lyrics are the result of an "meeting" Kaldr and Galge had, deciding what we should write about. Galge being very interessted in history in general, but local stories in particular, came up with the idea. And Kaldr supported that. Then Galge could go in to the deep, searching for stories that happend etc. In Norway we have some legends or tales that "everybody" knows. Like Fossegrim, Nøkken, Trolls and Draugen who was on the first album. On the second album we have some local stories that acutally happend. This is where the witches comes in. We live in Bergen, were they burned witches. The most "famous" one, Anne Pedersdotter, was burned in late 1500's in Nordnes, Bergen. Where we took our last pictures of the band actually. The title track of the new album is about this happening, with the "trial" in the intro and the actual burning of her in a middle part of the song. To make the whole thing sound as terrible as it was, it was probably worse, the real deal you know. Then there are this story that people in town could "hear" the witches on this mountain thatss called Lyderhorn here in Bergen. They reported that they could hear the witches dance around with Satan himself and putting a spell of sickness etc on the local people. We made a song of that of course. In the end of that song we try to make it like the listener can also "hear" the witches up on that mountain, with one hell of a riff and creepy vocals!

4.Some of your other lyrics cover paganism, Nordic mythology, folklore and legends, can you tell us a little bit more about what these mean to you?
4. Our previous lyrics is about these known norwegian myths, and Galge felt like he needed to cover this in a way. Because he is all about remembering stories and tales. It's not just these things he is interested in of course, but these became very natural to write about given the theme we decided to do. So being the writer (Galge) it means a lot to have done this. Being the producer, the one who makes the music (Kaldr) and "potato" it also means a lot that the album is about something unique.

5.I know that the bands name means 'cold/chilly' in Ancient Norwegian, how does this name fit on with the musical style that you play?
5. The name Kaldvard was chosen because of how it looks in writing, but very much what it means and that it is an old word. So old that no one knows it. We didn't know what it meant at the time we were given the suggestion from a friend. We fell in love with the word right away. And we think it fits us in the way we play. At least it fits the cold, dark stories we tell.

6.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the new album cover?
6. The artwork was done by Kim Holm. He has extremely many paintings, drawings, covers etc under his belt. Many of those who listen to metal knows his work. He did the Abbath cover this year for example. What happened was that, we knew he existed first of all, and we sent him an email explaining what we wanted. We told him that the cover should be of a witch burning. But "how" should be up to him, being the artist and all. So, some time went by and he eventually asks us for the title track. He wanted to listen to the song to get inspired. We sent him the unfinished, unmixed song and he gave us a sketch. We said yes to the first sketch we got, because that it hit us right away. He had not only drawn the burning witch, he had drawn a whole crowd of people watching the burning, as they did it back then. And some buildings etc. We are very proud of our cover art and it sets the mood not only for one song, but for the whole album we think.

7.Has the band done any live shows or open to the idea?
7. We have not done any live shows. We call ourselves a studio band. But we have talked about what we should do if the question hits us about live performance, and we are open for it but we would need help. Galge is the only one of us who has done live shows, when he was the vocalist for Gravdal. Kaldr and Ve have never played any shows. But with the right help and the right equipment we could do it, after some serious rehearsals!

8.You also have a couple of guests on the new album, can you tell us a little bit more about who they are and also their contributions to the recording?
8. The first song we got guest artist on was on our title track, and that was a bit funny and very awesome and interesting! On this particular song "Dømt Til Bål Og Brann", Kaldr and Galge had talked about who should be the "judge" in the intro. It has to be a man with a deep voice. Maybe an older man with dialect from Bergen or Denmark. We actually landed on an actor from Bergen, Helge Jordal. We were in touch with his management and all, but this never happened. Suddently Galge remembers he knows Ares! Founder, vocals and guitarist in Aeternus. He is not only local, but is known for his deep voice. So we asked him and he said yes. The main idea was that he only would be the judge in the intro, sending the witch to her execution fire place. But the day he joined us in the house we did recordings in the whole weekend, he was given a grim verse by Galge. They had agreed while Kaldr was outside smoking. Kaldr's thought was "oh FUCK yeah!". It was quite an experience to sit there, recording his vocals to were it sits, him being the pro and we being the noobs. But all went well and he thanked us and we drove him home. The woman who plays the witch, Silje, we recorded a month later. She has some experience in theatre and was not embarrassed, to put it like that. She went in screaming and shouting. This went quickly, and she was awesome. We are very grateful she did it so well!
Our second guest is V'Gandr from Helheim. This was a shot in the dark really. Kaldr, who is totally unknown for him sent him an email, asking if he could sing on this song he never had heard of. He answered rather quickly and said that he could do it if the song was good. Kaldr sent him the song, and he said yes. We were very excited! He told us that he wanted to do it freely. He listening to the song and sing along until he felt it was "gotime". And the result? Holy shit, we didn't know how to react actually. It was above all of our imaginations. He did an extremely good job on the clean vocals for "Tilbake"!
And, Kaldr felt like we needed a fiddle... So, he called Silje Vevle once again. Putting fiddle on "Tilbake". This song is so amazing that if you like this kind of things, or maybe you just like one thing but not the other, this is the song you need to listen to! She makes this "on the spot", freestyle tunes as we go. And Kaldr sits there, with goosebumps, recording and enjoying every note

9.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?
9. We were looking for labels to work with last year and early this year. But nothing happened. We got these "we really like you, but..." answers. So we got a little frustrated. As we worked on the second album, and we realized how much work we put in it, and how good we felt it was we came up with the promotion idea. Buying promotion from a company. That we would have got with a label perhaps. We asked a guy named Roger, who had written a review on our first album, if he knew anything about this stuff. He gave us a list with companies who promotes metal music. So we landed on Grand Sounds Promotion. And so far so good. We are not actively looking for an label right now, but if we were asked to be signed we would be very interested to talk to them

10.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black metal?
10. On our first album we didn't buy promotion like this. At the same time we suck at promoting ourselves. Not many people on our facebook page etc etc. But we managed to get some reviews and an small audience. We are completely aware of that we are new to the underground scene, but we still think that the first album deserved more than it got. But we are pleased with the reviews and that we kind of managed to get it "out there" anyways.
 This time we want to do it in a better way. We are not looking to be rock stars and make a bunch of money, but we would like it if our music got in the right channels so people can discover us.

11.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
11. The future for us is something we have n t talked about that much. The main thing we had a real talk about was this live show thing. In musical perspective we think that we will keep doing what we feel we are good at. Maybe try some new stuff and make the total even better, but for right now we are happy with what we got. We are interested in the sound is as good as possible, and with so many ways to do it, it's easy to achieve something we can stand for.

12.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?
12. We are a gang who listen to a lot of different things. Kaldr likes "everything". Now days he listens a lot to what he was listening to when he was a teenager. Naglfar, Myrkgrav, Einherjer, Helheim, Watain etc. But a lot of new stuff hits the ear as well.
Galge listens a lot to Einherjer, Dimmu, Shining, Gorgoroth and Metallica.
Ve likes Disturbed, Metallica, Maiden and that kind of stuff.
When Kaldr makes the music he try not to be influenced by anything. But maybe there is something subconscious when he is in the zone. Other people can probably hear something we haven't thought about and compare us to other bands. At the same time we know what we like, and the music we make is probably an outcome of that.

13.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
13. We are very excited to see how this new album will do. We have worked really hard on it over a long period of time and we are proud as hell! Hope it will make us more proud and that we get inspired to make more music next year!


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Israthoum/Arrows From Below/New Era/2019 CD Review

mardi 12 novembre 2019 à 11:06

  Netherlands's  Israthoum  have  returned  with  a  new  recording  which  continues  the  occult  black  metal  style  of  previous  releases  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2019  album  "Arrows  From  Below"  which  will  be  released  in  December  by  New  Era.

  A  very  heavy  and  epic  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  the  riffs  also  adding  in  a  decent  amount  of  dark  sounding  melodies.  Vocals  are  mostly  grim  sounding  black  metal  screams  while  all  of  the  musical  instruments  also  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  when  the  music  speeds  up  a  decent  amount  of  blast  beats  can  be  heard.

  When  tremolo  picking  is  utilized  it  gives  the  music  more  of  a  raw  feeling  while  the  songs  also  add  in  a  decent  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.  When  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a  very  melodic  style  along  with  one  track  also  adding  in  a  brief  use  of  classical  music  style  pianos,

  A couple  of  the  tracks  are  also long  and  epic  in  length  as  well  as  some  melodic vocals  also  being  utilized  briefly  on  a  couple  of  the  tracks  and  there  is  also  some  ritualistic  spoken  word  parts  in  some  parts  of  the  recording,  stringed  instruments,  synths  and  clean  playing  are  also  added  onto  the  closing  track.  The  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  cover  the  left  hand  path,  darkness  and  death  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Israthoum  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  occult  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Bracu  Magistris"  and  "Tuam  Vocavit".  8  out  of  10.


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Toluca/Soras/Tokyo Jupiter Records/2019 CD Review

mardi 12 novembre 2019 à 09:54

  Toluca  are  a  band  from  Russia  that  has  had  music  reviewed  before  in  this  zine  and  on  this  recording  plays  a  mixture  of  post  black  metal,  blackgaze  and  screamo  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2019  album  "Soras" which  will  be  released  on  November  29th  by Tokyo  Jupiter  Records.

  Clean  playing  starts  off  the  album  along with  some  distorted  guitar  drones  while  a  great  portion  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length.  Vocals  bring  in  a  mixture  of  post  hardcore  style  shouts  and  screamo  style  screams   along  with  the  riffs  also  adding  in a   great  amount  of  melody.

  All  of  the  musical  instruments  on  the  recording  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  while  the  faster  sections  of  the  songs  also  add  in  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  which  also  gives  the  music  more  of  a  raw  black  metal  feeling,  growls  can  also  be  heard  at  times.

  Elements  of  post  rock  and  shoegaze  are  also  used  quite  a  bit  throughout  the  recording  along  with  the  songs  also  add  in  a  decent  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.  Clear  singing  is  also  utilized  briefly  as  well  as  some  tracks  also  adding  in  a  small  amount  of  keyboards  and  the  music  also  has  its  atmospheric  moments,

  Acoustic  guitars  and  clean  playing  can  also  be  heard  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording  as  well  as  the  solos  and  leads  being  done  in a   very  melodic  style  when  they  are  utilized  and  as  the  album  progresses  a  brief  use  of  saxophones  can  also  be  heard,  spoken  word  parts  also  also  added  onto  the  closing  track.  The  production  sounds  very  professional  while the  lyrics  cover  the  Goetic  demons  from  The  Lesser  Keys  Of  Solomon.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  decent  sounding  album  from  Toluca  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  post  black  metal,  blackgaze  and  screamo,  you  should  check  out  this  recording.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Leraje"  "Vassago"  "Gusion"  and  "Sallos".  7/5  out  of  10.



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Trajeto de Cabra/Supreme Command Of Satanic Will/Iron Bonehead Productions/2019 CD Review

mardi 12 novembre 2019 à 08:31

  Trajeto  de  Cabra  are  a  band  from  British  Columbia,  Canada  that  plays  war  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2019  album  "Supreme  Command  Of  Satanic  Will"  which  will  be  released  in  December  by  Iron  Bonehead  Productions.

  A  very  fast,  raw  and  brutal  war  metal  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats.  Bestial   growls  are  also  a  very  huge  part  of  the  recording  while  the  music  is  very  heavily  rooted  in  the  90's  and  also  adds  in  elements  of  death  metal  and  grindcore.

  Throughout  the  recording  you  can  also  hear  a  decent  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  while  the  solos  and  leads  are  done  in  a  very  chaotic  style.  One  of  the  tracks  is  very  long  and  epic  in  length  along  some  black  metal  screams  also  being  utilized  at  times as  well  as  the  riffs  also  adding  in  a  small  amount  of  dark  sounding  melodies  at  times,  all  of  the  musical  instruments  also  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  all  of  the  tracks  stick  to  a  heavier  direction.

  Trajeto  de  Cabra  plays  a  style  of  war  metal  that  goes  back  to  the  90's  era  of  the  genre.  The  production  sounds  very  dark  and  raw  while  the  lyrics  cover  Satanism,  War  and  Darkness  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Trajeto  de  Cabra  are  a  very  great  sounding  war  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "In  Fear  of  Saturn"  "Supreme  Command  Of  Satanic  Will"  and  Heretic  Terrorist".  8  out  of  10.  

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BlackQueen Interview

lundi 11 novembre 2019 à 21:16
1. Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording of the new album?

We reached a point where we stopped playing live shows due to some of the members being too busy with other things to further contribute, which, although unfortunate, has also given us the time to work on new material and restructure things for the next venture. We are shifting gears to continue for the most creative and positive outcome for next year. Touring Europe is on our radar next, and a new recording.

2. You have a new album coming out before the end of November, musically how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?

The Destructive Cycle is a concept album, designed to have a certain effect when all the songs are played in the proper order. It has been written as a sort of musical spell. The results of which I can't actually reveal as it may compromise the effects of its charge. Musically its our most technically composed album. I think it stands apart from the other records in the totality of its overall theme.

3. This is also your first album to be released since 2015, can you tell us a little bit more about what has been going on during that time span?

I spent a straight year writing and composing these songs with our drummer Patrick. He lives in Portland Oregon so it was kind of a long distance thing. We crammed for entire weekends at a time, so we were very prepared when we got together to write. He's a very competent and solid thrash/grind drummer, so the songs for this album were written with his style of playing in mind. We tracked and mixed the album ourselves for a full year also, taking our time, as is usually not the case when you are in a studio paying an engineer and staying on budget. Our keyboardist Brandon Fitzsimons did all the production and we are very pleased that we took our time as the results more than lived up to our expectations.

4. The lyrics on the new album deal with the Taoist five element theory, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in eastern esoteric religions and cultures?

I have been studying chinese martial arts since the early 90s, and in 2005 was certified as an instructor of Wing Chun Do Gung Fu. After that I became involved in the Taoist Wudang internal styles, specializing in sword. Five element theory bleeds into the techniques of sword and XingYi which the former i have studied for 10 years, and the latter for many. The creative and destructive cycles are part of the forms of these arts. In 2010 I traveled to the Wudang Mountains in China with a Taoist priest as my guide and teacher. The spiritual and electromagnetic energy there is overwhelmingly strong and made a huge impact on me. I relate to this way of understanding the world and cosmos very intimately, and am a firm believer in its power.

5. You have also covered lyrics deal with western occultism on previous releases, can you tell us a little bit more about how your interest in this topic has evolved over the years?

I have always been a solitary practitioner and have never been a follower of any one lineage or stylistic practice. Looking at my evolution of influence, it is probably closest to Chaos Magick but with a strong emphasis on the internal martial arts as a catalyst for generating creative power. Over the last few years I have worked with a very talented teacher of hermetic alchemy. The more I study the different arts, the more I discover about my true self, and this reinforces my belief that the only true practice is the one you make your own. As alchemy states, 'Know Thyself'. I am still and will always be on the path to self knowledge.

6. You have also shown an interest in Italian horror movies, what are some of the films that have had the biggest influence on your music?

Definitely Dario Argento's Suspiria and Inferno were a big influence, especially in the old days of the writing of the Witch Metal demos. His interpretation of the fates as witches was a driving force for me at that point. Really any film that had a strong soundtrack and was part of the Giallo imagery has always been influencial. Both Goblin and the soundtracks of Fabio Frizzi have been very motivational.

7. What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Black Queen'?

The name is inspired by a character from Dario Argento's Suspiria. The black Queen is what the initiated members of the coven refer to the coven head as. One who has become a master of her own magick. Black Queen can also be thought of as a reference to the destructive power of nature, which most humans seems to view with fear and misunderstanding. Most natural disasters are treated as tragedies by humanity due to the loss of human life, when in all honestly it is part of the natural cycle of the planet and cosmos, and very necessary for growth and progress. The powerful fearful psychological energy created by the human ego as a result of these events is like a massive destructive entity that cannot be reckoned with. This also is the black queen.

8. Can you also tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the new album cover?

We contracted Jef Whitehead for the painting of the cover as we have a very high degree of respect for his artistic vision and originality both visually and in his musical endeavors. I sent him a string of photos of movements from the Wudang sword and whisk form for inspiration. Other than being used as a weapon, the taoist whisk is used for banishing malevolent energy. The being wielding these in the painting represents the destructive power of the universe in female form (mother nature), who is creating a swirling circle with the weapons as energy is emitted from a black triangle representing the void. We couldn't be happier with his interpretation of the album's concept. It fits the music perfectly.

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?

The one that really stands out was playing Housecore Horror Film Fest in Austin Texas. We got to pretty much open the festival and also playing were Goblin, Eyehategod, Repulsion, The Melvins, lots of amazing performances and horror films screened. We also each ate our weight in tacos. I really have loved all the shows we have played but it's always more fun to play in a town that is not where you are from. People just seem to react more responsively and get into it more. As for stage performance, everyone in this band is able to lose control live, it's not one of those bands where people just stand there and play the songs in a controlled way. When you are really having fun on stage, the crowd will pick up on it and respond. The way i see it everyone is there together, it's not just that the band is playing and everyone is watching, it's everyones energy together that makes a good show, not just that band's.

10. Do you have any touring or show plans once the new album is released?

Not at this point. We plan on going straight into writing new material and working on some video first. We would like to have something brand new to play the next time we play out.

11. The new album is going to be released thought both 'Roman Numeral Records' and 'Super Sargasso', can you tell us a little bit more about both of these labels?

Super Sargasso is a label out of Lima, Peru and we worked with them on the release of The Directress. A small label but very great to work with and we are very happy to have representation in South America, where people take their metal very seriously. Roman Numeral is run by Paul Pavlovich, who i played with in Assuck, and has also remained a very close friend since those days. He is releasing the vinyl and doing the design on it. All of his releases have a very high bar for the visual artistic integrity of the release. He really makes everything he puts out something very special to hold in your hands and behold. Everyone should really check out the releases from both these labels, its all really great stuff.

12. On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black and extreme metal?

Pretty good. Some people get it, some do not. We have always never really gave a fuck about what is currently going on and what is popular, we just create our art the way we want to. It seems like some people really want your music to fit into a genre, like it's death metal, or it's black metal or doom or whatever. We really have never cared for that mentality as we see it as very limiting. You might have a very black metal band that has people wearing cloaks and lots of candles and burning sage and all that, but is the music coming straight from their soul and their pain and experience in life? Or is it just mimicry for the sake of fitting into some lifestyle or fashion? We don't try to fit into these moulds, and we hope that our music reaches people, but we just do what we do without the outside influence of trends. It's the subtleties of our music that i feel make it unique, and many people have been able to tap into that.

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

Well things are going to get a lot more into the soundtrack realm for the next release, it's something we have always wanted to do. It will still be metal, just more theme driven instead of being focused on extremity and thrash. All the same signature traits will still be there.

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

As influences that are older there is Celtic Frost's To Megatherion, C.O.C.'s Animosity and Septic Death as well as things like Goblin, Fabio Frizzi and Ennio Morricone soundtracks. Recently been listening to Oranssi Pazuzu and Leviathan's Scar Sighted, as well as the Nasa Voyager recordings which isn't really music, but its unique because it wasn't recorded on earth. I listen to my share of field recordings and experimental music of all kinds too, and some traditional balkan music also. Ved Buens Ende and Ulver have always been a big influence for me also. I love their music.

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

Don't let the monkey brain get in the way. As Bruce Lee said, "Don't think, feel!". Thank you for your time.

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