|The Blood Divine||Moonspell|
A few years ago you said you'd release an album every year, but it doesn't
seem to have happened. Are you going to be releasing anything in '98?
Yeah, another album. We haven't really started working on it. We haven't been able to rehearse cos we've been touring pretty much all the time. We're scheduled to go over to America in January.
Do you have any idea of the direction of the new album?
No, not really. No remixes ot techno tracks! But we haven't started yet.
Do you have any plans to change your style?
It will progress as always.
Are you (LG) gonna start writing any lyrics?
I dont know! I was bad at lyrics!
Are you going to stick with the same studio and producer?
No, we don't think so. We've been having some problems, there's many things going on at the same time and it can't handle it. But then again we don't know yet, we might end up back there.
You've been using a lot of film imagery recently. What are your three
There's many of them, too many to mention.
LG: One favourite is The Living Dead, but you've seen it so many times... Ace Ventura, Wild At Heart. Swedish movies? Yeah, Swedish movies! for unvoluntery golf!
Jörgen: The Shining is a really good movie. (can't make out due to poor recording), Goodfellas
Then you have all the old Hong kong movies, Bruce Lee...
The covers of your new album and EP are a different style
from what you used to have. Are you deliberately trying to change your
We never had an image, we're just being ourselves and when you grow up you change. Has Nicke anything to do with the covers? I hear he draws. Not for the Wreckage EP. We had an atriste from Sweden who did the Nomads (sp?) album, it's called All Wrecked Up. We got hold of him and he was a really nice guy. He paints things like old wrecked American cars. Did you have to pay him much for it? No, only £400. It was really nice of him, we said we could only offer him £300-£400 and he said go for it.
On the subject of touring, for this album you've been here
already three times. (loud laughter) How come you're
doing so much touring?
It's fun being on the road, going different places, drinking lots of beer
Are you going to be putting any different songs in the set this
It's always a surprise, but we've changed it a little this time. You'll have to wait and see.
Which band have you enjoyed touring with most?
We enjoy touring with any band, but Napalm (Death) was fun. There's always something fun with every band. Obituary, Strapping Young Lad. What are Strapping Young Lad like live? They are excellent, intense, crazy!
What country that you've toured in has the best
It's pretty equal really. We played Ireland yesterday for the first time, and that was amazing. Really cool.
Whick city's in Britain have the best crown reaction?
London and Bradford are pretty good. Nottingham.
If you could chose any band in the world to have never
existed, who would it be?
That's a hard question. Europe, a Swedish shit band. Abba are cool though. I hate Led Zeppelin, they're shit and everyone else likes them. I love Black Sabbath
Why the water?
For the hangover!
Try some IRN-BRU!
[At this point we left and bought them two cans of the famous Scotish amber nectar. Unfortunately security kicked in and took one off me. Luckily I managed to keep the other hidden long enough to get it to our interviewees.]
|Back to top||Kevin + Graeme|
Is it true you're having another tour later this year?
I don't really know. Not Yet. We really want to tour again, cos I want to promote in the best way our latest album A Dead Poem. So maybe we'll have the ability to tour again.
If so, who will you tour with?
I don't really know yet.
And do you plan to have more British dates?
I dont know. But I hope to have some. I really hope.
Is it an aim of yours to get into the British market more, as youre
not very well known here?
Yeah I know. I think thats it's a particular aim to get into this market, because I think that England is a big market, I think the people still like metal music. It's discovered here you know, so we'd have to play here because we want to be heard worldwide. So it's a particular aim.
What about Jim, has he gone now?
Yes, he's gone.
Is he not coming back?
I don't really know yet because he's really busy with his business. He has children, he has his job. It's really difficult you know to follow Rotting Christ around Europe. So maybe if he has free time, yeah he will join again.
You used to be referred to as Necromayhem,Necrosavron and
Mutilator... but now you use your real names mostly, like Sakis and
Jim... is that a deliberate move to compliment your change in music
No, I just wanted to give our real names because we want with our latest album to give a new face to Rotting Christ. I do not know if its acceptable but .... If you like you like, but if you don't like its up to you, you know.
Is it true that you recorded all your stuff before Triarchy with a
No, only in the first album. A lot of people say this, I don't really know why.
You said last year that your old record companies were deliberately
organising bad reviews against you. Why do you think they are so spiteful?
I don't really want to come back to the past. This belongs in the past and I don't really want to pay attention to this kind of shit you know.
Is the misic/lyric writing a joint effort of all of you or by
I write all the music in Rotting Christ, because I am the only one - me and my brother Themis - from the former members. And I want to control Rotting Christ music, because... I don't really like to work all together, because if there are a lot of people working in the band that means there'll be a lot of arguments between them, so it's better to work once, and of course the other members are going to hear it later. So I write all the music and Jim the lyrics. Jim *used* to write the lyrics.
Who'll write them now that Jim's gone?
I don't really know.
What bands do you listen to at the moment?
A lot of bands from different kinds of music. Iron Maiden stuff, fast black metal like Blackened Pearl, like Demophobia, and atmospheric music like Dead Can Dance, or even poetic music. I really like poetic music.
Which ones have influenced your current music style?
Nobody. In the beginning we were influenced from the old glorious black metal bands like Bathory and Venom and stuff, but now I think that we can create our own sound. We don't think we're very influenced by other bands.
If there was one band you could tour with - whether still around or
not - who would it be?
I really have no answer. I think for every band that plays metal music I don't give a shit which is this band.
Do you prefer playing your newer stuff or do you prefer playing your
We play both. If you heard our tracklist today we played from the first demo to our latest album.
Which do you enjoy playing most?
I think I enjoy playing [unclear] from our Thy Mighty Contract album and Among Two Storms from our latest album.
Hows your sales doing since you signed to Century? Is your newer
stuff Dead Poem and Triarchy selling more than the other ones?
I think yeah. Century Media have the ability to promote your stuff in a better way, you know. In a professional way. But I don't really give a shit about exact sales. The only things I pay attention is to play my music, and I don't give a shit about sales.
Do you get abuse or trouble from Christian groups who don't
No, no we don't give a shit. We don't have any problems.
You say in interviews that your lyrics and music are inspired by
the darkness inside yourselves and reflect your feelings.
Is there any particular reason why you feel that way or is it influienced by other music you're into?
I think everyone has a dark side in their mind. And I don't want to write about things like flowers with Rotting Christ. Our music means more.
After you leave Rotting Christ in the future......
Don't say this! Rotting Christ is my future.. if I quit from the band I don't really know what to make. But it's something that is work with the music. That's all my future plans. You know, we are fucking musicians... we have no future! We are not scientists or whatever, we do not have anything else!
During the concert there was two guitarists.. but theres normally
one guitarist isnt there?
This is the other one - Costas. He's called Costas. [Costas suddenly appears from nowhere!]
Is he just for this tour?
No no no he's a permanent member.
So are there now 4 members?
[Costas:] No there's 5 members band now.
The keyboard guy as well?
Yeah, the guy playing was at the back
So You're all permanent members then?
Except the keyboard player.
[Costas:] We have another permanent member, keyboard player, that is permanent in the group. This one is session and the other is the original player
Okay thats it. Anything else you want to say?
I want to say thanks to the British people, for tonight. And I hope to play again soon in your land.
|Back to top||Colin|
Have you got any tourdates planned to publicise the new album?
Not at the moment no. We're in the process of setting one up. At the moment it looks like it's going to be probably January, February time next year. That'll be like a full tour of the year tour. But there should be some one-off dates in London and up and down the uk before that.
Do you know who you'll be touring with?
Not as yet, no. It might be a headline tour, I don't know as yet. Obviously if something comes along like a slot in a big tour then we'll go for that.
Are you going to tour outside of Europe at some point?
We'd like to obviously yeah. It all depends on demand . The album is out in Japan and the States, it depends how well the album does over there. To go over there it costs a lot of money to get out there. Yeah obviously if there's a demand there to go we'll go.
Do you all have normal jobs apart from The Blood Divine?
No, we're all 24-hour a day, 7-day a week slackers.
So how many hours a day, do you just spend all day doing it or what?
We rehearse a couple of times a week and obviously the rest of your time is taken up doing stuff like this, and sorting out general day-to-day things you know, there's always something which needs to be done.
Did you have careers before you started music?
I didnt, I'm not exactly sure what jobs everyone else has done, noone had high-flying city careers or anything. Most of the guys were in professional bands before anyway. I was in a semi-professional band. I've been in a few bands since I left art school. I've been in bands, I've had various jobs, I've worked in factories and washed dishes.. but nothing like a doctor or anything.
Was mentioned that the new album is more commercial than Awaken is,
and Daz mentioned that going commercial is bollocks and fuck all that.
Do you have any comments about that?
That's obviously Was's perception of it. I think basically what you need to understand is we didn't set out to make a commercial record, we didn't sort of say we want to sell more albums therefore we've got to compromise our sound, or start saying 'acceptable' things, we still want to be extremey regarding being different. To be extreme you don't necessarily have to be louder or faster than everyone else. You can only go so far in that one direction. We like to think that we're doing something more individual, we want to say things in our music that might be confrontational or contentious, not just write safe, happy little songs.
That was obviously Was's perception, I'd agree to a certain extent. I think this album could appeal to a wider audience, that's just the way it came out. Darren's vocal style is a lot more developed from the deep gruff kind of vocals. Darren doesn't really do that, he sings on this one.
We just wanted to get out of that kind of ghetto, you know. Everyone always wants put a little tag on you, saying you're this and that's all you can be. And then people read about you and its like 'Well if they're that, I dont really like that.' Give that a chance you know what I mean. You need to consciously kind of step out of that and listen to it on your own terms. We want to reach as wide an audience as possible, but for the right reasons. It's not purely a money issue.
When you started The Blood Divine, did you get offers from record
companies other than Peaceville?
Well, we were in an unusual situation in that Darren was still under contract to Peaceville from when he was in Anathema. He left Anathema and you're signed to the record label as an individual, not just as a group, and they have the option to hold you to that.. Darren being the singer and the lyricist, Hammy [bloke from Peaceville] was very keen to continue working with him and he said 'If you get a new band together I'll be interested in hearing it and if I think its good then I'll sign you again and the rest of the band' which is what happened. Darren went away then he hooked up again with Ben who'd just left Cradle Of Filth and they started jamming together and they came up with some stuff and then me and Was joined and we did a demo and the record company liked it and we signed on the dotted line. So there wasn't any other way we could have done it really, but we're quite happy with it.
There's a trend with a lot of metal bands to progress towards softer
and more harmonious music. Do you think that's the way forward for
metal to evolve to get it out of the rut of staleness that it
sometimes threatens to slide into?
I don't know, cos when you say that I always kind of think in terms in the eighties you'd get rock bands and they'd have the 2 rock singles which are the 2 heavy ones and then they'd have the obligatory slow song to kind of say 'Oh yeah we've got a sensitive side'. I like harmony as much as anybody else. I like songs with a tune. It doesnt necessarily have to be a nice kind of tune. I don't think the way forward is for metal to become more like pop music, it needs to try new things.
Daz said once that his dream would be to break some boundaries or
change the world with music in The Blood Divine. Do you think it's
possible with this type of music?
If you're asking me if any art can change the world, I don't know. I guess art changes or informs people's world view. I guess its gotta have a kind of positive effect. I know certainly the way I view the world and my own personal philosophy is largely formed by the books I've read, the music I've listened to, in conjunction with personal experience, so in that way I think art can focus things.
I dont know what people expect.. they expect bands to start the revolution for them. It's like what Dylan said, 'Don't follow me'. A band at the end of the day, you're only artists, you can only say certain things, its down to everybody as individuals to change their own situation. But certainly there is that intended in what we do, we don't see what we do as just pure entertainment where you come along for a couple of hours and jump around and get a bit drunk and then go home and forget all about it. We like to think that maybe it'll have a positive effect.
People don't generally come to bands like the image of being really straight one minute and then dropping acid. Like they do with the Grateful Dead when they go there and freak. I think generally it's the other way round. You look for bands that you kind of identify with, and I guess it kind of gives you the courage of your convictions because you see other people feel the same and that kind of hones your world view I guess.
What do you think of the internet and the rise of the metal scene on
there? Do you know much about it?
Yeah, we're on-line ourselves now. We're quite getting into it. We havent been on very long. We did a kind of conference thing. [(An IRC interview session)] I enjoyed that. Anything which increases your access to information is a good thing. Its nice to have things there at the flick of a switch.
Do you feel that writing music gets easier as you get more experienced
or does experimenting changing styles keep it hard work?
Perhaps it gets harder actually the longer you go on, I get a lot more self-conscious about it. The more you do it, the more cliched your own playing is. It gets more and more difficult. You've constantly got to stretch yourself to do something new rather than get complacent with it and just write another album like the last one. 'That kind of worked so we cant be bothered to come up with anything original.' So yeah I don't think it gets any easier. The way that we approach music is we're always trying to push ourselves to do something more. You're never totally satisfied.
What's it like having 2 brothers in the same band? Do they always
fight like most brothers do?
No they don't actually, they get on really well for brothers, they don't bicker amongst themselves any more than the rest of us do. We all get on really well for a band. No big arguments - you always get disagreements but we're kind of laid-back, civilised people and any differences we're able to solve in an intelligent fashion without beating each other! They get on okay, there's no big family tantrums.
In which country have you had the best reaction from the audience?
It's hard to say countries. A couple of gigs stand out on the last tour, I remember Milan being a really good crowd, and Paris being really good. I remember Czeckoslovakia being really good. We played Prague. And the Polish crowd.. we had one day in Poland and they were absolutely insane. It differs from town to town. The Spanish and Portuguese crowds are very good as well. I guess it's down to the Latin temperament. They seem to be a lot less reserved at showing their appreciation, they really get into it.
So you think Britain's more reserved than Europe?
Yeah I often get that kind of feeling yeah. People are very blase about it over here, so many bands come from here. The reaction you're getting somewhere like Poland, they get about half a dozen bands going through there a year so its a big fucking event when it happens. In this country there's so many things going on that they seem to get complacent about it. "Shall we go out? No we'll sit at home and get stoned and watch TV".
Are you more satisfied with the work on your new album compared to the
Definitely. We're a lot happier with this one. I think with the first one it was the best album we could have made at the time, but we hadn't been together very long, we'd only been together about 6 months before we recorded it and we certainly hadn't gelled in the same way that we have now. We hadn't played live before Awaken, which obviously really tightens you up, so with this one we really kind of discovered our style. And you discover each others' styles and each others' strengths and you play off of that. It's kind of like when you have sex with someone for the first time the first couple of times youre a bit uptight and then you loosen up. Its the same thing with bands.
What other bands of similar music style to The Blood Divine do you
I must admit I don't really listen to a lot of stuff from that genre. I come from a different kind of music background. I'm more into punk rock and garage rock and that kind of thing. I don't listen to stuff by genre. There's a lot of stuff that I like at the moment.. what sort of bands are you thinking in terms of?
Say stuff like Anathema, My Dying Bride, that kind of thing.
I must admit I'm not a great fan of what Anathema are doing now. I prefer their older stuff. I quite like the new Paradise Lost album actually. That's the one band I suppose thats loosely in our kind of thing. I know people who've liked Type O Negative, we've kind of been lumped in with them a bit, gothic metal or whatever. I like what they're doing.
I've not heard your forthcoming album but I've heard its considerably
less 'doomey' than Awaken. Is there any reason why you've changed away
from that... do you feel differently about things or did you just want
a change of style?
If you mean do we feel less melancholic now, no, I don't know, I don't think I've really changed that much, its more a desire to experiment musically. I still think it's not a feelgood album, its not party metal or anything! I think its still dark and its still melancholic, but in a different way. It expresses new ideas which are slightly different maybe from before.
Do you see your music as being radically different in 5 or 10 years
from what it is now?
I'd like to hope yeah that in 5 or 10 years we'll progress, like before. I don't see it as the kind of band that will keep churning out the same kind of stuff. As to where that direction will go, I really don't know. We haven't got any kind of plan. We want to go out and just follow our instincts man!
Do you have any personal style that you'd like to go towards? You said
you were into punk.. would you rather it be more aggressive or
I must admit I liked some of the more spacious tracks on the album. Whether that's the direction we'll move in I don't know, but I'm always looking for things which interest me. I was quite impressed with the way the more subtle tracks came out, but ask the same question in 6 months and I might say we'll get crazier or something, I don't know! At this point in time those are the ones which intrigued me the most but I don't know whether that's the way I'll always see it.
|Back to top||Colin|
When bands like yourself go on tour they always seem to
tour lots of obscure places in mainland Europe, yet they never seem to come to
Scotland. Do you have any plans to visit Scotland at any point?
Fernando: Actually we played in Scotland during 1995 supporting Death Metal lot Morbid Angel from the states at Glasgow's Garage. It was not a memorable show or reaction. We have no plans to visit Scotland touring wise in the near future, maybe when we get a bit bigger we will be able to do it.
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