Monday, February 18, 2013

Immolith Interview

1. Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?
Shortly following the release of our first full length album, Storm Dragon, we went on a hiatus. I was feeling a bit burnt out on the whole thing after four years of pouring everything into the band and needed some time off. I had thought about keeping the band a solo studio project for some time and continued to slowly work on new material. After about a year of being a hermit, I realized I was just kind of spinning my wheels creatively. Without a full band, and constant rehearsals I had no real drive to work on new material. So I got back in touch with the guys at the end of 2012, and we decided to start getting together on a regular basis and writing the next album together starting back this January 2013. And that is where we are at, now. We are writing the new album, and hope to be back in the studio recording it with Chris Grigg late summer, or fall 2013.
2. How would you describe the musical sound of the new album and how it differs from previous releases?
My goal hasn’t changed since I started the band back in 2008. I wanted to be in a straight ahead classic sounding black metal band. Hopefully the material we are writing now will continue in that track. I know lots of bands and musicians love to talk about how they evolve and progress creatively and that’s great for some bands, but that’s not what I worry about for Immolith. I’m actually a big fan of bands that remain true to their original sound or style for the most part over the years. I tend to drop bands very quickly if they stray too far from what I like about them in the first place. So I hope the next Immolith album will get a lot of the same comparisons Storm Dragon recieved after it’s release in the press- and that was that it sounded very much like the second wave of black metal.
3. What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the new release?
I write about medieval and ancient history, the occult, and topics drawn from fantasy literature and fantasy role playing games.
4. I know that one of the members writes for the online version of Metal Maniacs, how are things going these days with that project?
I’m lucky to have the chance to write for Metal Maniacs. Since it’s a volunteer gig, I’m fortunate that I can contribute on my own schedule and really just get to write about bands and albums that I really like. I get asked to do reviews by bands and labels quite often, but I tend to turn a lot of that down. As a musician in a band I feel it really isn’t my place to review other bands. If I’m really into an album I might write a review, but otherwise I try to stick to interviews of bands that I really like. While I was on my hiatus from Immolith last year, and being somewhat of a recluse, I didn’t really contribute that often. I’m going to try and post a bit more regularly on Metal Maniacs again this year.
5. What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and how would you describe your stage performance?
We’ve gotten to share the stage with a lot of cool bands. Turnout wise, our best show was probably opening for the Enthroned/Destroyer 666 tour a few years back. There was a really good sized crowd there early enough to see us, so that was very cool. On a personal note for me, having been such a huge Celtic Frost fan as a kid, opening for Triptykon and getting to meet Tom G. Warrior and speak with him for a few minutes was probably the most rewarding part of an Immolith live show for me so far. As far as our live show it’s pretty much what you would expect from a traditional black metal band, meaning we do the full corpse paint, blood, fog, spikes thing that most people think of when they think of traditional black metal. 

6. Do you have any touring plans for the future?
Well, since I’m an older guy with a regular career, I don’t see the band every actually touring anywhere unfortunately. I’m way past the age of “let’s get in a beat up van and go tour..” So outside of maybe getting invited to open for some bands in the NY/NJ/PA area where we live or maybe being invited to play an a fest somewhere we could travel to for a weekend I don’t see any real touring happening for this band.
7. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?
The band has really gotten strong support over the years, and the almost all of the reviews of our first full length have been very, very positive.
8. In 2013 there are alot of younger black metal fans and bands that have the opposite view of what black metal should be compared to the older days, what are your thoughts about it?
To me black metal has always just been evil, dark, aggressive music and that’s what it will always be. If other people think of it as something else, I will disagree with them, but I could really care less. I’m not going to grandstand or get on a soap box to try and tell someone else what to think. But if your band calls yourself black metal, and it’s not evil, dark, and aggressive, I probably won’t listen to it.
9. What direction do you see your music heading into on future releases?
Again my goal is to create traditional 80’s and 90’s influenced traditional black metal. That won’t change.
10. What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your newer music fans also what are you listening to nowadays?
I don’t really listen to anything new. Or if it is new, it sounds like the old days of black, death and thrash metal. 

11. How would you describe your views on Satanism and Occultism?
I’ve read a ton back 20 years ago, from LeVay and Crowley, to Grimoires on Ceremonial Magic. More recently I’ve read some of Michael W. Ford’s books on Luciferian and Chaos Magick. As a young man I was really into the idea of demons and spirits and all the paranormal stuff that typically comes to mind when people think of the occult. But as a much older and I would like to think, a wiser man, I’ve decided I’m a firm atheist and really don’t believe in paranormal anything. To me Occult practice really comes down to a focusing of the will for a desired outcome. And as such it is a good and powerful thing. But for me there are no gods, no devils.
12. Outside of music what are some of your interests?
I still read a lot of history, which is what I studied in college, as well as fantasy and horror books. I’m a hockey fan, and like riding my harley. Other than that, I have a family that I devote most of my time to. 

13. Any final words or thoughts before we wrap up this interview?
Thanks for taking the time to interview us, and I hope some people will check us out and listen to the last album, and keep an eye out for the next one later this year or early next year.

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