1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the musical project?
Answer: First of all, I appreciate you have contacted me to develop this interview. So, Funeral Requiem is a one man Black Metal band from Colombia which saw the light of this world in 2019. Since years ago i wanted to (i wont say express myself as a being because that is not my goal) let the art within me go out, i was looking for letting my soul express by itself especially with the darkness i have embraced, the one that i have discovered one of our human nature, because from my perspective we all are like a yin yang. The band and it's roots have a lot to do with nature, not because it is a cliche in nowadays black metal themes, it is because i grew up surrounded by nature, i was raised in a town where, fortunately, i had lack of social contact, and my best friends were actual animals, plants, and trees, that way i learned that nature is above us, not the other way around. Also, darkness and occultism which years ago i was involved into, i won't go deeper into this last thing, but all i can say is that i was initiated in the left hand path, shamanism, and black sorcery years ago. Regarding the lyrics, most of them are about the other side, spiritualism, spiritism, death, darkness, and astral projection because as mentioned, i was -and still- submerged in the dark realms of human spirit and always been a psychonaut (at first with the use of entheogens, but nowadays without any substance). Musically, the first album has a mixture of Black Metal/Doom/DSBM and Black Gaze, and it was unplanned, i just let my soul came up with whatever it came, and that was the result. Once i mentioned to some partners that with Funeral Requiem i don't want to make something "different", i don't seek for innovating the Black Metal scene, as everything, i have always preferred being old school, traditional, said that, with the project and its music, all i want to achieve is transmit what i feel is good music, and if others consider the same, i am ok with it.
2.So far you have released an album, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical style you went for on the recording?
Answer: That first album "Negative Realms of the Spirit" i could say that has a mixture of traditional Black Metal, Doom, Black Gaze, and a bit of DSBM. The voices sometimes change from scream to growls giving that Death Metal/Doom flavor. I have a Dark Electro/Harsh EBM/Industrial side-project in which i mostly use synthesizers and digital sounds to create what i do there, however, with Funeral Requiem i didn't want to put any of those elements (having a lot in common both of them) because i wanted this project to be authentic, original and not having "futuristic" elements on it, i wanted it to be more analog, nevertheless, you can hear some choirs and piano sounds i put there to give the accurate atmosphere to it, not too much, not too little, just the perfect amount. Because I have listened to many other bands combining both elements, and that is good for them, I respect the way they create their music, and I like how they sound, but I wouldn't do it for my project.
3.Some of your lyrics cover occult and left hand path themes, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in the dark arts?
Answer: As some of you might know, being initiated on occultism, spiritualism, and black magic means that you didn't choose the path, the path chose you and even if you try to leave it, you won't be able to, because it is the will and that is how it has to be. Many years ago I met people who were active practitioners of the Black Arts, they taught me many things I learned, really deep knowledge, wisdom that is already forgotten. But then I was the one who took the steps towards the vast spheres of true spiritualism, like, they showed me the way, the door, but I made the decision to go through it. So, more than an interest, it is actually something i have been experiencing ever since then, which is interesting and it is something that i can only share through music.
4.What are some of the other lyrical topics and subjects that you have explored so far with the music?
Answer: Social avoidance, misanthropy, Death and related, ghosts, nature in its dark form, and universe and astral topics. Let me give you a brief recap of what the instrumental songs are all about. The intro song which has the same name of the album is about a 911 call of a girl who found a dead body so she called 911 to report it, i added some nature sounds at night and pad sounds to put that cold and macabre feeling on it. And Haunting After Dead is all about those souls that cannot rest in peace, they are angry and full of jealousy of the living because their consciousness is attached to the physical world so they cannot transcend, so they keep haunting the living forever. All the rest of the songs, you can read the lyrics so you will be able to understand the context of each one of them, but in general, they are inspired in death, mysticism, occultism, misanthropy and satanism.
5.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Funeral Requiem'?
Answer: It is just an name that evokes the feeling of the true darkness of Death, i mean, Death is the end of the physical human existence, and most of the people are afraid of that, so basically Funeral is is the ritual that most of us get when we die, and that moment is fulfilled with sadness, darkness, and magic. And for Requiem we have two main meanings: First, you can describe it as the prayer that a deceased gets when he is in that state. And second, it'd be a musical composition sung that has as text the mass of the deceased or part of it. As you can see, everything is related to the great mystery of Death.
6.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the album cover?
Answer: The cover art is a painting by the master Gustave Dore which is called "The Descent of the Spirit", it is part of his "La Grande Bible de Tours" wood engravings (issued in 1866), he is representing the passage of the Holy Bible Acts 2:2-3, Nevertheless, i am not a religious person, far from being christian or catholic, the painting is modified with the band's logo at the top which from my perspective, it seems like an ancient funeral ritual. I personally love Gustave Dore art.
7.With this project you record everything by yourself, are you open to working with other musicians or do you prefer to work solo?
Answer: By all means, actually i am working with my marvelous love and partner of life "Nix" for future releases, she is an amazing soprano and bass player. Also I have been talking with other people to get them in the band. However, so far, i prefer to create everything by myself, that way i can express everything through the music. So, hopefully soon or later you will see more entities involved in Funeral Requiem.
8.On the album you also did a 'Satanic Warmaster' cover, what was the decision behind doing your own version of one of his songs?
Answer: I like the band a lot, even tho I am south american, I feel deep connection with the NS black metal, specially with the Nazi part of it. I have to clarify and highlight that the part of Nazism that I am attracted to, is the fact they wanted to exterminate many people in order to install supremacy over others, exterminate the human decadence and be the best in pretty much all aspects were goals of the NS ideology and practices, so, as I am Misanthrope BIG TIME, I like that, I feel connection with it. There are many many reasons why I feel empathy with the NS ideology, but I guess this is not the time to dive deep into it. However, the band is out of NS Black metal scope and themes.
9.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black metal?
Answer: Actually it has surprised me. When I created Funeral Requiem and then the songs were released, I never ever was seeking to be listened the way Funeral Requiem is as of today, and I do have to say that the international support is greater and better than the local. I have to thank all supporters that are reading (or not) this interview, because as I make music just for joy, I appreciate that others enjoy it as well.
10.Where do you see yourself heading into as a musician during the future?
Answer: The style for Funeral Requiem I like to keep it raw, primitive, but interesting. As you might know, I have included the Dungeon Synth genre to the project, it is because that genre is extremely close to Black Metal, for me, it evokes the feeling of being in medieval times, or in a mystical gloomy environment, it depends on how it's executed. Thus, the project is going to have that touch of raw black metal, but also Dungeon Synth, and whatever it comes great for the sound of the project, not forgetting the roots and the north of it.
11.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?
Answer: Besides Black Metal, I love Dungeon Synth, I enjoy it a lot, also Dark Ambient, Horror movies OSTs (specially the modern ones), I also like to listen to classical music, especially Baroque music. Also Dark Electro/Harsh EBM/Industrial. That I would say that is what I listen to nowadays.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Answer: Yeah, thanks A LOT to you guys for this interview and to listeners for enjoying what I do from my soul, keep it real, keep it metal.