1. I started Oþalan late in 2014 as a solo project under the moniker Aþalawulfaz that i could use to honor my Swedish ancestors and delve into topics that wouldn't generally fit in other projects i have done in the past. I later added þunraz (C.L. as seen on the CD booklet). Even though the songs for our debut were mostly completely written by then we did collaborate on some riffs to full finish the songs. Most recently I've added a good friend of mine as our full time drummer who goes under the name Gaistaz.
2.Recently you have released a split, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording?
2. The musical sound for our music is hard for me to describe, and i usually leave that up to the listeners, but i could definitely say that it is meant to be listened to deep in the forests.
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
3. When it comes to lyrical content, it's all about the old ways and nature. You may find some slightly anti-christian messages but that's not what its really about. They mostly tr to capture the feeling of nature, proto germanic culture, and ancient Scandinavian religious rituals. Long before Eastern influences and modern edicts.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Opalan'?
4. The name Oþalan is the old Norse spelling of the odal rune in the elder Futhark alphabet. It has several different meanings but for this it is the meaning of heritage.
5.The band members come from both Sweden and the United States, how does this work when it comes to the recording process?
5. The recording process is really pretty simple. I write and record all the guitars and bass, and when songs are finished i send them to Gaistaz to record his drums over and when i get the final form of the songs musically; myself and Gaistaz will collaborate on the lyrics and ill record vocals. The songs for the split with Kalmankantaja we had a session drummer who is a good friend of mine called John King who plays in the technical death metal band Primordium.
6.Has the band done any live shows or is this strictly a studio project?
6. The band so far has not played any live shows, but if i can put together a full line up in Sweden the future may see some shows for Oþalan.
7.Recently you where a part of a split with 'Kalmankantaga', what are your thoughts on the other band that had participated on the album?
7. I'm very pleased with the split we did. I was a fan of Kalmankantaja before we ever did the split and it has been cool working with Aki and the guest vocalist they had just for this release.
8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?
8. We honestly haven't seen a lot so far. The split isn't out yet and only one song from each band has been released from it. I'm sure things will pick up once we get closer to the full release and begin getting some promotion from Wolfspell. We have had kind words on youtube and a decent amount of views though. I don't generally gauge it by Facebook likes or anything though. We shall see what people really think of us once the CD is out.
9.When can we expect a full length album and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
9. The full length is currently in the works, and will be released on CD through Wolfspell Records when the time comes. All i can say is that the songs are much longer and the music is much more chaotic, while still retaining the folk elements from our previous material. I would relate it to Mgła if they had acoustic sections.
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?
10. Some major influences for me personally and especially for the music heard in Oþalan would be Ulver, and Burzum and Abigor primarily as well as bands like Agalloch and early Wyrd. I've been liking almost everything Fallen Empire Records releases, especially Lluvia and Hæthen.
11.How would you describe your views on Paganism?
11. I would describe my views on paganism as in high regard. It is the true religion and culture of my people, and it influences me greatly. 100% respect.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
12. I'd just like to say thanks to Kalmankantaja and Wolfspell records for the opportunities we've been given as a brand new band, and to the people who have enjoyed our music and checked us out so far. thanks to you for this interview!