1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the musical project these days?
We just released a new EP then we had two gigs at Midgardsblot and Trondheim Metal fest. So, it was quite busy time during past months. But now we are planning for 2016 for more live gigs also a new release.
2.Recently you have released a new ep, 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?
Well, there was an idea behind recording this new EP. Since I am one of the main characters in the upcoming Norwegian documentary film about black metal "BLACKHEARTS", so, I got this idea to record some music with cooperation of other musicians who are involved in the film. So, I wrote the music (same style of From The Vastland music from the beginning) and for recording, "Vyl" (Drums - Keep of Kalessin/Gorgoroth) and "Nul Blackthorn" (Bass - Luciferian) - the other characters in the film - joined me at Skarp Studio (Trondheim, Norway). So, after a week of working at studio the EP was ready. And since it was recorded specially for the film so, I called it "Blackhearts".
You know, as I said it is the same style of my previous works, The main structure of the songs is not different but I think it sounds even more brutal, old school and aggressive also slightly gives you a taste of melodies that comes from Iran
3.Your lyrics cover a great amount of Persian and Mesopatiam Mythology subjects, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in these topics and while these are a huge part of Iranian, is this stuff almost hard to learn about in your home country due to the influence of Islam?
Yes true, All of the lyrics are about/related the old Persian history, mythology, legends and ancient texts . We have lots of stories in our mythology that are full of battles between gods and devils, lights and darkness etc. Well, I just felt that is really proper for Black metal lyrics. Epic stories, mysterious and unique…So, that was really interesting to me.
And actually Iranian people do really respect their history and ancestors but at the same time, Iran is an Islamic country (However, I think most of people are not true believer) So, if you really want to learn you can find good sources, like books to read but also it is true that because of Islamic regime it is not that easy…well, a bit complicated..!
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'From the Vastland'?
There are some reasons that I named my band “From The Vastland”. You know, I am from Iran (Persia) and all of my lyrics are about ancient Persia and you know it was one of the biggest empire in the old world, a vast land. That is one of the reason but also I see the whole metal scene like a single land, where there is no border in this community, a unity from all around the world. So, that was another reason.
5.Originally the project was from Iran but now located in Norway, do you fell it is much safer to be a black metal musician in Europe than it is in your home land?
True. Well, we all know about Black Metal and Norway. This country is like a heaven for BM musicians, you know. Actually from many years ago I wanted to get this chance and continue my music works here in Norway. Black Metal scene in Norway is great. And you know, it is a completely different situation in countries like Iran, when it comes to BM actually we don’t have any chance to work on our music freely. There are lots of limitation regarding to metal music, specially black metal. You can’t release your album officially and it is not possible to get permits in order to do a live concert. And on top of all it is risky to be a black metal musician in Iran.
6.On the albums you record everything by yourself but use other musicians in the live setting, are you open to working with other musicians on the albums?
Well, before I move to Norway I had to record everything by myself but now actually I write the material also record the demo tape (with vocals, guitars…, everything) but then send it to other musicians that I am working with (My Norwegian band members) and after rehearsal together we go to studio and record the album.
I really like to work with other musicians. It always helps to improve the music, for example when they have new ideas for some parts of the songs like drums or bass. You know, then the final result will be better…
7.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?
Recently we played at Trondheim Metal Fest (Trondheim/Norway) and it was great. It was sold out and the venue was packed. There was an extra ordinary energy and we really enjoyed our show. People were just banging their heads and enjoy the music. Everything was really good.
We did our best and gave everything. You know, stage performance is always important, that is where you are in close contact with audience so, we always do our best to make our show as good as possible then we enjoy together with the fans.
8.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?
We are planning more shows in Norway also some in other countries (in Europe) for 2016. So, if everything goes well we will have a couple of shows next year.
9.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?
It is always important for me to get feedback from fans. I always pay attention to them, also the reviews from magazines, webzines or reviewers. You know, after a short time when you have released your album, it starts to get the feedback and then you realize how people liked your album, which song most or least. It is also interesting when I get feedback from different countries or when I check the statistics of my online pages.
Fortunately I have gotten really good feedback for my albums, positive energies, nice words and good vibes, that is great. And I am really glad about that, to me it means I am in right direction and I do my best to keep it and make my music better.
10.The new ep was released on Symbol Of Domination Productions, can you tell us a little bit more about this label?
Well, since the release was kind of special so, we wanted to have a really good distribution. The thing is Symbol of domination is a label company from Belarus but it is also part of another company from Russia which is called Satanath Records. Also Hexenreich Records (Estonia) and Sphera Noctis Records (Brazil) are part of the release so, it was a co-release. You know, they are working with so many other companies all around the world and that was important to distribute the album everywhere.
11.When can we expect another full length album and also where do you see yourself heading into as a musician in the future?
I have written and recorded all the materials for a new album, guitar lines, lyrics etc. actually the demo tape is ready and soon we are going to start our rehearsal and then head to studio to record it. So, early 2016 probably, it also depends on which label company we will work with.
Well, I always have big dreams…many plans for the future but of course it takes time to achieve them, I want to continue working on my music and be better day by day, I really like to work with other musicians… I always think about the next steps and make a plan for the future, I want to achieve my goals and be somewhere on top…for me this is not just a music, Black Metal is my passion…
12.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?
Well, I am fan of old school BM from many years ago, early 90’s style and albums, Scandinavian bands specially Norwegians but also lots of other bands from Germany, France and some other countries…I can mention to Gorgoroth, Mayhem, Marduk, Belenos... And you know, nowadays you can find really good bands all around the world. I always like to discover new bands, I also check new releases of my favorite bands.
13.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
I just want to say please support the art, support the music, this is what we have in common and that makes us strong together like a family. It doesn’t matter if we have a different taste in music (metal), still we are on the same boat. So support each other in every way that is possible for you. You can keep alive your artists by supporting them…
I want to say thanks to all of my friends and fans for their support and help, it is highly appreciated. They always give me energy and motivation to continue my way. Also special thanks to you for your attention to my band and this opportunity.