1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the musical project?
I “founded” Siechtum back in 2005 when i had my first riff which would become the intro of my first album. But i almost spend 10 years without releasing any stuff, just doing demos for myself – which are really crappy i have to admit. In the first days i had this stereotype themes like hatred, and unreflected satanism which i think many start with in their puberty-state. But i felt this doesn`t really fit to me for 100%. My education deals a lot with nature and so i had chosen to make these topics center of my concepts, but not in this Neo-Hipster Black Metal style. When you study nature and the role that mankind and yourself play in it – you realize that our lives are just a small glimpse of an eye in earths history and the individual life is worthless in the large scale. That is of course a quite nihilistic approach, but we`re talking about Black Metal, right? And of course Mankind depends on the natural environment – not the other way round.
2.So far you have released 3 albums, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on all of the recordings and also how do they differ from each other?
I think there is a clear development in the sound – although it`s recorded with the same equipment and software (I just added three more mics for the drums since the second album). I just changed the way of recording which is still on amateur-level. But i think i`m at a point that i found my sound, maybe i will even take a step back and do the drums in the style of the second album again. It`s important for me that everything sounds like it`s just coming out of the rehearsal room. Recording in the studio isn`t an option for me, because when you enter a studio you have to do a job, done under financial and time pressure. I also include the note on every record, that i use shitty-cheap equipment exclusively (for example all guitars are done with my small 30watts amp and my crappy amateur guitar – maybe i should change guitar-strings by time?). I think Black Metal isn`t about musicianship or technique but passion, sweat and blood you put in it.
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects you explore with your music?
I have chosen to call my music “Ecocentric Black Metal”. It should describe the opposite of anthropocentrism in the way i described it in the first part. Also – as a logical step – my concepts are strictly anti-christian (in the logical way this includes also judaism, islam and all religions that put a anthropocentric concept above). I often cite the Bible-vers Gen. 1:28 (about subduing the earth) cause in my opinion this is one of the most cruel and unreal Dogmas that has ever been stated. And claiming that a god, who creates man as his likeness – by the way i think it`s the other way round – has created this one species in the long evolution of the earth and universe, claiming that it (Homo sapiens s.) should subdue the myriads of species is just perverse and stupid in my opinion, especially when you see how dumb and arrogant mankind acts.
With this new album i explore that topic in the reflection of a pig in factory farming – sounds strange concerning Black Metal, but when you think about it, it makes perfectly sense when it comes to suffer, a justified hatred towards mankind and christianity. Also the title itself (“...durch die Augen einer gequälten Seele” means “seen through the eyes of a tortured soul”) is truly blasphemic cause the christian theology (among others) claims that only humans have a soul. So what are these fuckers claiming that a feeling, thinking and acting live form like the pig on the cover doesn`t have a soul? Fuck them.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Siechtum'?
Siechtum means a sort of decay; originally it was just referring to the decay of our civilization or mankind in general – it wasn`t a really creative band name back when i started i have to admit. But concerning the new album it get`s a new form of definition – cause this time it deals with the physical and psychic decay of a individual.
5.On the albums you record everything by yourself, are you open to working with other musicians or do you prefer to remain solos?
With the new album it was the first time with “humanoid” guest- vocals in some parts, which a good friend of mine did. He also stands behind this topic and i felt his deep vocals would be a good affect behind my voice – and i really like the result. A “trademark” also may be that i include samples of animal voices on every album. Sometimes it`s really astonishing how it fits to the music and atmosphere – for example i recorded some toads (Bombina bombina) for my second album and this time it still gives me goose bumbs when i hear the pig sounds on the new Album. Otherwise i`m doing everything by my own – also the layout – cause i like the control and not to do any compromises. And the only one who i have to give account to is myself.
6.I have noticed that there was no websites or social media for the musical project, do you feel these things have destroyed the underground nature of the genre?
I can`t really estimate this because i was never part of the undergound or any scene. I grew up in a small town and later moving to an even smaller village nearby. Social media was never a part of this and i explored my Black Metal universe by my own. I think it`s the way Black Metal should be enjoyed - like listening to Darkthrone`s “Panzerfaust” roaming through the woods at night with a bag full of beer instead of twittering about how true somebody is.. In a way it`s strange when i imagine how bands sing about hatred, sorrow, misanthropy or isolation and the same time they`re happy about every like on Facebook. So for my project it would make no sense to present myself on social-media.
7.So far the albums have been released on 'Winterwolf' 'Northern Fog' and 'Depressive Illusions', do you feel these labels have been very supportive when it comes to getting your music out there heard?
I don`t know, working with a label is just a thing that has to be done, cause i don`t have the time and passion to deal with this stuff. There can be a lot of frustration and disappointment dealing with labels, also i really got fucked up by another one that isn`t mentioned here (So, may i say: “Fuck You Black Blood Records! Wasting my time for half a year!”?) On the other hand the wok with “Northern Fog” was quite good and professional but i think no label can really support my vision for 100%.
8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?
I`m not in contact with Black Metallers nor have i been part of a scene or something. I just have some good friends who listen to different genres and if i would need an honest response, i would reply to them. But in the end it`s me who makes the decisions and only when i`m pleased to 100% with the music, it`s worth to release it. But of course it`s nice to here if there`s anyone who likes the music. On the other hand i also like it when people find my music crappy, haha.
9.Where do you see yourself heading into as a musician in the future?
I will start to record a new Siechtum album this summer, this time with really new material cause the amount of song material on the further albums is based in my starting period from 2005-2010. I´ve also started a second Project called “Ökomisanthrop” which has a lot more black-thrash vibes in it – there i can realize my “Fuck Off” approach better. I hope the first EP can be released this year.
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?
I think the two most important bands, who also shaped my visual comprehension of Black Metal are Darkthrone and Agalloch (of course Agalloch isn`t what one would define as Black Metal, but they pushed the approach of old Ulver to new dimensions). When i first got in contact with extremer music – a keystone was Venom's “Black Metal” – the whole second wave of Norwegian Black Metal really cast a spell over me (and it still does). So i still love old Taake, Carpathian Forest, Gorgoroth or Hades for example cause the music has this dark nature-mystic in it – also there are some italian bands like Tenebrae In Perpetuum or Lorn who carry this spirit. But there are also more progressive bands that i love, like Agalloch, Alda, Primordial or Nocte Obducta (check them out if you don`t care about genre-borders).
I´m quite exploring the Thrash of the 80ties a little bit more right now, when the genres were not that fixed and many bands also had a blacker vibe in their music – check out early Excidium form Italy or Sacrilege from UK. And i really recommend some german BM-Albums like Lunar Auroras “Ars Moriendi” or “Perished And Forgotten” from Graven.
11.What are some of your non musical interests?
I`m a nature-boy and spend a lot of time outside, roaming through the woods (or what is left from them), drinking beer and listening to good music. Unfortunately you don`t have the freedom here in Germany to do real Trekking-tours cause it`s official not legal to camp outside, nether can you do a fire or something. Of course sometimes i do smaller Tours or larger ones in other countries. But it`s a pity in Germany,, cause there are a lot of good places, especially in north-eastern Germany where not so many people live. It really fucks me up when i imagine that you can`t even get water here outside, cause everything is spoiled with agro-chemicals or fertilizer. What a shame for a “civilized” country (as almost for the whole world) to sacrifice this natural goods for some economical values – as it stands in the fucking bible “Subdue the earth”. And yeah, another hobby of mine is being in rage about these environmental-topics and the fucking religions, haha.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Thank you for the support, it`s maybe one of a few opportunities for me to give some infos about my projects. There are two tracks from the new album on soundcloud and if anyone is interested or want to receive my music, contact me on Waheela666@gmx.de.
Or just send me money (ok, that was a joke).
Thanks and keep the black flame burning!