1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?
Hello, Sorts Apostata here from Vanad Varjud. Well, at the moment we are waiting to get CD-s of our release. We have not yet received those. And I got just news that our very first t-shirt patch is ready. So lots of „sleepless” days and waiting going on. Otherwise we are preparing to one new song, well it is not quite new, it was left out from „Dismal Grandeur....” for different reason and we have plan to put it on one special compilation release but at this moment I rather not reveal much of that. I am also (actually constantly in my head) working on ideas and new material. Hope to lay some demo material for new material this year, but we shall see...
2.Recently you have released a new album, 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?
Second release continues to wander in the same path as in the first release „Apooriad” though maybe in little bit different direction, this time more colder. It is world of eerie atmospheres filled with four journeys to darkness, despair, solitude, confusion and pain that is bonded and may even considered as a somehow story in a key of cold drone solitary black metal.
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
First I try not to tell anybody nothing. I have no answers. I try to keep my lyrics (or lyrics I use) free of dogmas and let people themselves make their decisions and what ideas they will get from the it, if at all. My lyrical choices are kind a in equal portion: my own expression/exploration/creating aura/psychology of inner darkness/ solitude / drama. And mostly based on my own experiences. What else there is You can relay on, right?
Most of the time we relay all sorts of entities, gods and other people in our dark moments or whatever moments or most of the time we ignore all the darkness (and things what it presents) and do not want to face it and we ignore and fail to learn when we should learn from it. Imho human evolves only in a kind a crisis situation, in a state of eudaemonia human usually is not moving forward. So I try to explore these areas when man has left out all „crutches” and has only himself and how you cannot escape these things anymore in solitude and there is not anyone left but yourself and all the masks are ripped off... – Left In the dark (btw very good Seal Bliss song, wish I had written it, very great aura, lyrics, etc..that haunting horn!) You can find much more satisfaction, peace and wisdom from Your inner world than from crowded and mostly empty surroundings.
Kind a hard to explain all that content, I myself are on that journey so well see where it takes me...
Of course there is more topics I am interested in and new release probably I will go little bit different direction but too early to talk about that.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Vanad Varjud'?
Vanad Varjud – Old Shadows in Estonian. Shadows are getting old, night and darkness is coming. Night time is for me best time to think, enjoy the mystery of my inner world, calm and haunting, solitary, mystery, sexual, gothic.. etc. something different always wakes when night comes, something... Same time Vanad Varjud means some ancient knowledge that has never left this world and we have forgotten and It keeps to remind us of...I never much have enjoyed this modern kind of culture...Vanad Varjud for me is kind an opposite to that...
5.So far the band has never played any live shows, do you feel this type of setting takes away from the atmosphere of the genre?
Yes, You are in the right track. I have played many years live with totally different projects and in some point in my life it just did not felt right anymore, I did not feel nothing on the stage anymore. And with Vanad Varjud we have not performed live for different reason. First and most important thing is that I have to be 100% sure that we can create right atmosphere for us and for audience. And after I decided not to perform on stage anymore I have now different thoughts and I Yes I have now some ideas maybe to do some performances. But these will be very few and only when all seems to fit in place and as I mention when we feel we can bring that aura in that kind of situation we will do it but otherwise at the moment I do not see Vanad Varjud on stage as a live performing project but I do not see what future brings and things have tendency to change in an unexpected way so....who knows.
6.The new album was released on Symbol Of Domination productions' how would you compare working with them to your previous label 'Hexenreich Records'?
I have been lucky. It has been very good with Hexenreich Records and with new partners as well.
Actually new release is split release between three labels – Symbol Of Domination/Hexenreich Records/Arcana Noctis. It all started when we were discussing with Hexenreich about new release and things got moving and thanks to Hexenreich we got connected with Symbol Of Domination (sub-label of Satanath Records) and Arcana Noctis and result is „Dismal Grandeur in Nocturnal Aura” CD. I am most pleased working with them, very professional and creative co-operation. I hope to work with them in the future as well.
7.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?
To consider that we have not done very much promo if at all, we have had very good feedback from most mysterious and unexpected places and persons. I kind a even enjoy it more that way than usual promo attention. I myself are big digger and explorer all kinds of UG stuff and it is most enjoying when You find something Yourself rather somebody tries to get Your attention with big promo campaign. Not against promo but it gets very funny fast.
8.What is going on with some of the other bands or musical projects these days that some of the band members are a part of?
Well our drummer Thon has been busy with all kinds of projects but at the moment as I know he is actively drumming in Sõjaruun, Urt and his own project Realm Of Carnivora.
And Ott our main vocalist is not actively taking part in any other project. I know he has plans for some other stuff but I do not know much of those...so.
9.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
Good question, I do not know, If I knew I probably would not be doing it anymore :). For me it is always more the journey than the result. For me always one journey ends when record is released but I know for others who will discover and listens it starts and that is the beauty of it and for me also journey continues or new one starts with new songs. But to answer Your question it is more important to get right atmosphere and aura and if it demands some changes in musical direction then we will do it but I do not see that we will change too much, of course I would like to try lots of things but use them only if they work and not for the sake of trying. I would very much like to make an Vanad Varjud album with kind a more traditional black metal parts involved, more faster and raw parts but without loosing atmosphere. Maybe new record will be like that, who knows!
10.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?
Hard to say what music specifically has influenced my music, probably everything I have listened influences in someway. When I am doing demo songs for release then I try not to listen nothing and keep my head on my own track. But to answer question and to mention few: I have been listening lots of movie soundtracks, Batman, The Omen etc.then there is dark wave and gothic stuff and of course black metal (yes this is cliché but 90-s Norway and Swedish black metal never gets old to me say what You want), the aura that some black metal bands have captured and created gives you just chills. And I have to mention also Dead Can Dance
Lately I have been listening lots (and discovering) IXXI, The Konsortium, Kommandant, re-discovering Dark Funeral (Dark Funeral - Live At Buenos Aires, recommended!) and some weird electronic stuff. And listening all the usual stuff I used to always listen.
11.What are some of your non musical interests?
I go to work as most of us do so for the spare time I have from everyday chores and routines I try to read as much as possible (interested in pretty wide topics), I have this “stupid” habit I have to have always books near me, even I do not have always time to read them I have to have them by the reach of my hand...And I try to get some balance between my mental and physics to exercise..ehehe well I am not succeeding very good at that at the moment.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
I thank You for this interview and wish strength to keep on walking the path You have chosen.