1.Can you tell us a little bit about the band for those that have never heard of you before?
We are a three piece band from Ohio. Or we were for a long time. We've recently added a bass player after having a revolving door of substitute bass players, although he is unable to play some shows due to living in a different state. We're kicking around the idea of a second guitar player. It would be extremely beneficial for some of the newer songs.
2. How would you describe your musical sound?
I usually describe it as gross. I think the tone has a lot to do with it. It's rooted in black metal more than anything, but sometimes we slow down to a more crushing, doomy pace. The doom stuff is getting phased out bit by bit. It's not intentional, I just haven't been writing music in that style.
3. What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
The general lyrical content of the band is based on Swansylvania, the people who live there, and their religious beliefs. It's a small farming town that was once located in southern Ohio, that was destroyed by a flood awhile back. We're from there originally.
4. What is the meaning and inspiration behind the bands name?
It's the name of a deity that is worshiped by the townsfolk of Swansylvania.
5. What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and how would you describe your stage performance?
We often debate whether our best show was in Nashville, TN or Ashville, NC. It was during our mini-tour with Vestiges. They were both great shows. Good sound. Good crowd. Lots of beer. Our stage performance is generally intense. NB will perform vocals from the pit while the rest of us remain on stage. There's very little banter from our frontman and we are all business, going directly from song to song without interruption or introductions. We typically have a few drinks before we get on stage, so I guess it's not too serious.
6. Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?
There's a show coming up in October at a small place in Columbus. We very rarely tour, if ever. We tend to play two or three shows a year, typically out of state. We would like to do a short west coast tour at some point, and maybe something along the east coast as well. The problem is that we all work or go to school, or both. We have responsibilities that take the forefront of our lives. Music is a hobby, and none of us would want it any other way.
7.Currently the band is signed to Handshake, Inc, how did you get in contact with this label and how would you describe the support they have given you so far?
That's not technically true at this point. There were some problems with Handshake Inc that I am not at liberty to discuss. The vinyl release has been cancelled. There was going to be a CD version of The Dry Season, but I believe that has been shelved until further notice. Essentially, The Dry Season EP is now digital only. We will occasionally burn copies to hand out at shows. It's kind of funny that we're bootlegging our own record. I believe JK even downloaded the album from a media sharing site as he didn't have the master tracks.
8. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal, doom, and experimental?
We don't have a huge fanbase by any stretch of the word, but it's been fairly positive. However, I'm not sure a lot of people know how to take us. We're sometimes associated with other, newer bands or genres of which I am not a fan, but it's not something I can control. Regardless, whether people like it or not, we're going to keep doing it because we like it. I actually prefer the smaller fanbase to a worldwide audience. It feels more authentic to me.
9. What is going on with the other musical projects these days?
Unfortunately, I cannot answer that. I know the other members are involved in other projects and I wish I could tell you more about them, but I don't have enough details on it and I'm the only one giving the answers right now.
10. What direction do you see your music heading into on future releases?
As stated above, the doom stuff is a bit lacking on newer songs. I just haven't been writing doom riffs lately. We have a new album about 80% ready to go. We need to rehearse the songs a few more times and we're set to record this winter. There's actually a heavy death metal influience on the newest stuff. It's still black metal mostly, but there's bits and pieces where you can hear the death metal influences. I'd also look for more bluegrass/country sections to show up on future stuff, though not as much on the up-and-coming album.
11. What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
I can only speak for myself as the main songwriter, but if I could name three bands that really shaped Vit's sound, I'd say Alice in Chains, Pantera, and Grand Belial's Key. Kind of a weird mix I suppose, but that's what really influenced me when I first started getting into playing music. The other members have varying influences as well, though as I said I can only speak for myself.
Lately I've been on a death metal kick, revisiting bands like Gorguts, Necrophagist, Suffocation, Morbid Angel, typical death metal stuff really.
12. How would you describe your views on Occultism?
I don't think we really have any views on occultism, because to be truthful I don't really know what that would entail. We are fascinated by the lore and fables surrounding Swansylvania, but I'm not sure these beliefs fall under the umbrella of occultism.
13.Outside of music what are some of your interests?
We all have jobs. Some of them are not interesting. We all enjoy alcohol to an extent. Both NB and JK have dabbled in brewing their own beers, but it's not something in which I am particularly interested. NB and I work on a comic book off and on, more off than on these days. It's hard to get hobbies when most of your free time is consumed by responsibilities. That's why we do music so infrequently.
14. Any final words or thoughts before we wrap up this interview?
Thanks for being patient with the delay in answers. We'd also like to apologize to our fanbase for the delays and more or less cancellation of The Dry Season. Look forward to a new album in early 2014. We're taking full reins of the project again so there shouldn't be any delays this time.