Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Ghast Interview

1. Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording and release of the new album?

Arrrrrrrach: Nothing really, a few gigs and rehearsals for them. Live Evil.

2. You had a new album released in August, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?

Arrrrrrrach:  The new album came out this month, having been recorded 2 years back. Listening to it these days, it seems a little more damp and morbid, but whether that is the production and vox or the writing is hard to tell.
Kz: We’ve taken it further, and knew better what Ghast is.

3. This is the first release to be put out in 3 years, can you tell us a little bit more about what has been going on during that time?

Arrr: I've been focusing on painting and drawing and stressing out.
Kz: 3 years! I suppose just life. I’ve also been playing drums for a range of other bands, but that’s calmed down now too, these years? I don’t know.

4. What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the newer music?

Arrr:  It's all about the album title, which came retrospectively.  Songs of black magic, trial by torture, the curse of violence, a hallucinogenic death ritual, resentful ghosts and of blind, murderous rage.  In that order.
Kz: For me, from behind the kit “The Magic Men….” During Hate Stone.

5. The band was originally known as 'Souldust' what was the decision behind the name change and also the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Ghast'?

Myrggh: We wanted a better name. I was ignorant of Lovecraft at the time, although I saw the word 'ghast' and took it to mean a particularly wretched kind of ghost. It just suited the mood. It has nothing to do with a certain boxy looking creature in a popular computer game.
Kz: I remember being outside our rehearsal room, by the drains, in the wind and we all didn’t like being called Souldust.

6. What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?

Arrr: It's always down to the crowd.  Long been fond of our Scottish shows, as well as a few in London and Bristol.  No strange events, just good reactions here and there.
Myrggh: There was a gig we did in Ashton-under-Lyne, supporting Pantheist in the back of a pub. It was very cold and very dark; one of the few performances where I think we all felt in control. It just struck me as being very much a Ghast gig. There weren't many people there.
Kz: We’re changeable, every gig is unique. Easy highlights are Bristol opening for WITTR, just the atmosphere. Camden in London for the first night of our tour, another time in Camden when we were very late and everyone hated us but we won ‘em over. Our first gig with Daemonolith in Bristol and all the subsequent gigs we played together. The London bloodbath, the Edinburgh boozy!

7.Do you have any touring or show plans for the new album?

Arrrrrrrach: No, we're contemplating.

8.Colin Marston did the mastering on the album, are you satisfied with the way the album was produced?

Arrrrrrrach:  Both the mixing by Swine and the mastering by Marston are great.  We wouldn't be half as good without these efforts.
Kz: We recorded the album in two days. I recorded my drums in four hours, that’s for an album that’s nearly an hour long. To capture that Swine did well! Ideally I’d like to spend more time but that hasn’t been an option for us.
I like what Colin has done, I’ve been trying different stereos and it sounds great no matter what you do!

9. Fenriz of Darkthrone had you listed as band of the week, where you honored having this metal legend liking your music?

Arrrrrrrach:  Yes, Darkthrone is one of my top bands and Fenriz is my favourite drummer, especially on Blaze and Goatlord.  Fucking disgraceful hammering.
Kz: Yes!

10. The new album came out on Todestrieb Records, how did you get in contact with this label and also how would you describe the support they have given you so far?

Myrggh: Nobody would have heard of us if it wasn't for Todestrieb. In fact, they're the reason we decided to record our first album.
Kz: I think at our first gig as Ghast in Bristol (opening for Amputated - 2007) somebody brought a copy of our split release, and played it to Todestrieb.
Arrr:  Massive.

11.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your newer album by fans of black and doom metal?

Arrr: It's been out since Monday; two guys said it's great.

12. Are any of the band members involved with any other musical projects these days?

Myrggh: I'm just starting something new in my garage. Don't hold your breath - it's all happening at a snail's pace and will sound like a peat bog when it finally gets heard.
Kz: I’ve been recording with a doom band called Reclvse.

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

Arrrrrrrach: I can't see us straying far under this moniker.  I never know what will happen; it all begins with sitting there messing about on the instrument, inspired by who knows what just happened that day.  If it doesn't fit, it doesn't get used.  We have plenty of stuff that was abandoned due to being 'off'.
Myrggh: No, not abandoned. I've recycled all the bargain basement riffs.

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?

Kz: In Ghast I’m influenced by Arrrrrrrach & Myrggh. I aim to add bitter emotion to my snare, spite to my cymbals, it’s hard to hold it down and I slip sometimes. I listen to Crust Punk, Dub, Doom Metal, Pop, Drone, Your phone..
Arrrrrrrach: I'm currently listening to a lot of USPM, mainly 80s stuff, catching all the reissues I can find.  As well as 70s prog, as always.  Some of my influences regarding Ghast would have to be Autopsy, Darkthrone, Paradise Lost, Bethlehem, Weakling.
Myrggh: Got to mention early My Dying Bride. There's nothing wrong with their new stuff either, but you're usually more influenced by what you heard when you were young. Mayhem. My riffs on Scorn and Death are Profanatica inspired. Always early Bethlehem. Horna. I've been enjoying Saxon, Agent Steel, Vostock, Elderwind, Phlebotomized, Emperor (Wrath of the Tyrant. Everything after Anthems is awful). Bad News.

15.What are some of your non musical interests?

Myrggh: Drinking, and doing just enough exercise so that I don't feel guilty about it. Staring into space when I have the time. Posting out copies of Dread Doom Ruin. Neglecting my sleep.
Kz: I’m stuck on writers, and periods of writing. Back on the Beats again, thought I’d read my way out of it. The other one is travel, I like seeing new places.

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

Arrr:  Thanks for getting in touch!  Be careful removing the booklet!

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