Fathomless Misery is a project that I started up around a year ago. Originally the band was due to be a more Blackened Death metal project under a different name, though due to not being able to find a full, reliable, lineup and that my personal life had taken some rather unexpected turns and generally left my general mind set in a very dark and negative place Fathomless Misery came to be. I am a UK based project, Cambridgeshire, England to be precise and the first full length, which you've reviewed, Descent Of Slow Suffering has just been released and there is already a second release in the works so there will be more music coming in the future. Even though I will hopefully continue working on this project for a long time I am highly doubting there will ever be any live shows from Fathomless Misery, for this project playing live doesn't interest me at all, this is a recording project only.
2.In December you had released your first full length album, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording?
It was a very genuine recording for me, there was no deliberate attempt to make the music any certain way, just when I sat down and came up with the riffs and wrote the music etc this was just how it naturally came out sounding, the creative flow was very fluid and it all came together naturally. It was literally just how I personally felt at the time the music was created. The production on this recording is really raw, which was something I personally felt would work better, I wanted to music to come out and sound pretty much how I was feeling at this current point in my life so believe this could be how I managed to get such an incredibly dark atmosphere yet there is still a lot of aggression and hatred that follow the darker more ambient sections. It's a real chaotic mix of sounds and emotions in short....
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects you explore with your music?
The lyrics for this release cover many different dark topics, in the booklet for the album itself the lyrics are printed but deliberately are extremely faint to the point of being almost unreadable. This was done for a couple of different reasons, firstly a lot of the subject matter is actually quite personal and relates metaphorically to my own experiences and personal life so didn't want people reading into that too much. The second reason is that for me, this project isn't so much all about that, but I wanted the listener to focus on the music and hope that just by listening, that a person can feel the atmosphere and feel what was put into the creation of the music and maybe interpret things in their own way and get something out of it themselves whether it is positive or negative.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Fathomless Misery'?
The name Fathomless Misery just came to me one day and just thought that this would be the perfect name for the project. It works well and gets the message of what this music is about pretty much immediately. There were a lot of other ideas for the project name but this was the one I settled with and thought it was most suitable.
5.On the album you record everything by yourself, are you open to working with other musicians or do you prefer to remain solo?
Well, on Descent Of Slow Suffering, a drum machine was used which is something I am hoping to avoid having to use again in the future as this type of music I feel works a lot better with real drums. I am in another band with a very talented drummer who has agreed to help out with future releases. In the case of collaborations, I would be happy to work with other people/bands but they'd have to be artists I really enjoyed the work of and that would work with my project as well. I am generally very picky and specific when it comes to creating my own music so generally would rather work alone on that, except the drums as stated before, but i'd definitely welcome the idea of a split CD if the right band/label offer came up.
6.The album was released on 'Thantalogy Productions', can you tell us a little bit more about this label?
Thanatology Productions are a really good label and I feel very lucky to have had the support of this label behind me on this release. The label generally seems to pick up new bands and pushes them which is something not enough labels are doing these days, usually they will only release bands that they know have a following and will sell records but in order to get a band to that point you need that push in the first place, there are a couple of other labels doing this but not enough. Thanatology are from China and as expected I believe mainly they pick up Chinese artists and they have a good variation of styles on the label, ranging from the harsh black metal, to death metal and thrash. One of the bands I really enjoyed listening to from this label is Troma Tumor who are a technical death metal band with a really unique style so I recommend them for sure amongst other releases from Thanatology Productions. I've had really good support from this label and the product itself has come out looking really nice and didn't have a single problem at all so can say it's been good working with Thanatology.
7.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?
Honestly, when I was working on this music, I didn't think anybody would really be interested in it or like it at all but the feedback so far has been really good, a lot of people who have heard the album so far have said they have really enjoyed it and my music seems to often be compared to Xasthur or early Burzum. The main negative feedback I get is about the drum machine, this seems to put a few people off and i'll admit I would prefer real drums and will be making that happen for future releases hopefully, but this time it just wasn't feasible. So I can say so far the feedback has been really good and it's nice to know other people out there understand what the project is about and are able to get something from it.
8.What is going on with your other musical project these days?
I am playing in two other projects at the moment. Firstly is a project I birthed many years ago Malignant Germ Infestation which I have been doing for around ten years on and off now. This is a comedy gore/porn extreme metal band and nowadays we are a settled two piece. I write and record all the music myself pretty much but I have a vocalist on this project who writes the majority of lyrics and performs most of the vocals and we both contribute equally in terms of ideas. We have a new album called Exquisite Servings Of Excrement which is almost completed so hopefully that will be released later on this year. I do play live with this project as well, due to only being a two piece, I do live guitars and backing vocals, the vocalist does his vocals and we have a backing track that plays the drum tracks, samples, synths and basslines, this is just most convenient and flexible for us these days.
The other band I play is called Obscene Entity, I only joined the band recently (as the bass player) and have my first live shows with them this month which I am looking forward to. Obscene Entity is a four piece band which features members of other UK bands Terra (Black Metal) and Shrines (Progressive Black/Death Metal). I believe the style of this band is a unique style of death metal, however in the newer material it's sounding like black metal is having an influence on the sound a bit so "extreme metal" is the easiest label to give the band. As well as starting up gigging after a break they have just released their debut full length album (Which I wasn't involved in the writing or recording of.) so be sure to check that out as well if anyone reading this is a fan of in your face brutal metal.
9.Where do you see yourself heading into as a musician in the future?
Currently as well as working on writing the new Fathomless Misery material I am working with Obscene Entity who have a few shows lined up already this year so a lot of time is going into performing with them at the moment. But as for the future Fathomless Misery material, I think the newer tracks will continue with raw, harsh black metal with the atmospheric element to it as well. I will just be letting things flow naturally and what the end product sounds like will be a result of that.
10.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?
I listen to a lot of different music in general so it's hard to pin point any specific bands. I am a big fan of Xasthur so am not too surprised people have been able to hear some influence drawn from there come out in my music even though it isn't completely obvious to me and wasn't intentional at all. The majority of influence for me as I said earlier comes from things that have actually happened in my life and things I have felt at various points, if when writing/creating the songs it needs to make me feel a certain way, if I don't feel anything for the music I will forget those parts. That is the main influence for Fathomless Misery without going into too much detail. As for music I have been listening to lately I can't even begin to list artists, I am always listening to music pretty much of all kinds of styles by all different bands, this can range from Grime (English Hip Hop), Psy Trance and Industrial to Black and Death metal of course.
11.What are some of your non musical interests?
Music is of course my main interest and takes up the majority of my free time. However I am dedicating a lot of time at the minute to learning Japanese Language which is very challenging but I feel that is progressing quite well. I go to a lot of gigs, mainly metal shows, which is always cool, it's a great way to discover new bands as well as see the bands you are a fan of and generally show support for these bands and the metal scene in general. Other than that I don't do anything too out the ordinary.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
I would like to say thank you to yourself for putting this interview together and giving my album a very positive review! Of course I would like to thank anybody out there who is interested in this project and has helped support it in any way, whether you have brought a CD, helped promote the project or even just posted to your friends on facebook about it or whatever. Without support a band is nothing. In any case, keep updated with the project as new things will be coming. Cheers!