A blog dedicated to posting black metal pictures, videos, new releases, reviews and all the other good stuff.
n. 1. A philosophical proposition, doctrine, or principle of reasoning.
An interview with Graf von Baphomet of Psychonaut 4! Brought to you by Philosopheme!
After multiple requests from my followers for such an interview, I managed to get one with Graf, the frontman of the very narcotic-orientated suicidal black metal band - Psychonaut 4. Enjoy!
1. Let’s start with your name! It’s relatively unusual pseudonym, though that’s not to say it’s a bad one. Could you explain it to us?
Greetings! So, about the name: the word Psychonaut means a guy who likes psychodelic drugs and the “4” is the number of plateaus of Dextromethorphan (DXM). I came up with “Psychonaut” and Andre thought of the “4”.
2. Your first release shared a strange title: “40%”. What’s the meaning behind this?
We called our demo tape “40%” - the percentage of alcohol in vodka. I think it’s the best name for demo tape of a band “influenced” by alcohol.
3. Some time ago you were trying to tour with Hypothermia. Is that still going to happen?
Yes, we’re gonna tour with Hypothermia over Europe, but because of several reasons the tour was moved from October to March/April.
4. And whilst we’re on the subject, what band would you MOST like to tour with?
I don’t know. Hypothermia is a great band to tour with, but it’s hard to say about other bands because I need to know them personally. I think it would be great if we toured with Pergale, I know them and they’re great guys!
5. I’ve noticed your music shares a lot of traits with bands like Lifelover and Apati. Are there any bands, metal or otherwise, that you are influenced by?
We’re influenced by a lot of metal, but not only metal bands. We have some influences from post punk, DSBM and poetry.
6. Out of all your songs, which one is the most meaningful to you, and what’s the story behind it?
My favourite song of ours is Drop by Drop. This song is very personal to me. I’ve put all my senses and emotions into it - this song is full of pain and hate.
7. Psychonaut 4 have been dubbed “Modern Suicidal Narcotic Depressive Black Metal”. Is this something you’re okay with, and how are you different from your average DSBM band?
We’re simply Post Suicidal Black Metal. Fans can dub our style as they wish.
8. Why do drugs and alcohol play such a big role in your music?
It’s difficult to answer, we used to live as we live, our way of life is reflected in our music.
9. I think we’ll finish off with the simple question: what’s your favourite drug and what’s your favourite drink?
Good question. Vodka and mushrooms(Psilocybe Cubensis) and LSD.
Thanks for interviewing us, and have a nice trip!
You can find their official Facebook page right here. Please message me with any requests for bands to interview. I’ll do my best!
An interview with Morbid and Karmageddon of Happy Days! Brought to you by Philosopheme and forestofnihilism!
With a bit effort, contacts, and lots of good fortune, me and forestofnihilism got to arrange an interview with the two brilliant men who make up the legendary DSBM band - Happy Days! We offered them 9 questions which they very kindly answered. Here you go!
1. (Morbid) You’ve worked on quite a few projects that I personally love;
Photophobia, Secretly In Pain, Nostalgie and more. Which of these past or current projects have given you more to learn and work with?
Those projects you mentioned were just a one-time thing. The current bands that I am currently doing work for, that are active, are Happy Days, Withering Night and Xylactic. It was like a process of experimenting and learning more in regards to the mixing and mastering and trying out different tunings on guitar or themes based on my aspects of life.
2. (Morbid) Which of your albums with Happy Days do you personally consider as your best work - your masterpiece?
Each one is a very special release. Despite the quality sound of the first 3 ones, they are each very personal to me. But as for the fans I think they will appreciate the newest 4th full length a lot more due to the musicianship and the sound quality of the production.
3. (Karmageddon) Over the time the band has progressed, I noticed
in the newest album you use blast beats(“Industrial Melancholy”).
What do you feel about this evolution? Do you enjoy it better than the past?
Or would you consider it a necessary evolution as a musician?
I never felt the need to incorporate that style of drumming up until the song “Too Sick to Speak” from the Eindig split. I have always enjoyed playing at higher tempos for other projects or jam sessions but most of the material Morbid writes for Happy Days wouldn’t sound right with blast beats backing it. I write the drum patterns and beats that i feel best fit the overall feeling of the song.
4. (Karmageddon) Are there any drummers you draw particular inspiration from, or admire?
I thoroughly enjoy the styles of George Kollias (Nile), Gavin Harirson, and Mario Duplantier (Gojira) at the moment. As far as inspiraton for drumming goes I think that just comes with experimentation and the drummers I listen to on a day to day basis.
5. (Karmageddon & Morbid) Happy Days have done two splits, I believe! But if you could collaborate with any band out there - even if they’re no longer going - who would it be?
Man, where do I begin… Bethlehem, Drudkh, Insidious Omen, Portal, Horna, Sargeist, Dodsferd, Nortt, Abyssic Hate, Trist, Kanashimi, Mortualia, Elitist, Trancelike Void, Andrarahk, I’m In A Coffin, and so much more that I can’t think of at the moment…
6. (Morbid & Karmageddon) My favourite song from your latest album is Abigail. It’s an instrumental piece, but at the beginning there’s a sample from a film. What was the thought behind this? Did you feel it just added to the atmosphere of the song, or was there a deeper meaning?
That song is very personal and it was written about a certain someone. Needless to say it was very hard for me to record those two songs without breaking down. What the song is about speaks for itself.
7. (Morbid) Your new project “Xylactic” what fuels this new idea? It’s actually pretty good and quite different from the work we’ve seen from you in the DSBM area, tell us more about this if you may.
I decided to experiment with a more traditional black metal sound considering my drummer from Happy Days is currently busy with personal matters. It’s a one man band that I started and its kinda of like my alter ego and its influence is in a way derived from many aspects of music. It’s very new so I am hoping to do more with it.
8. Are there any future plans for Happy Days? Touring around, some collaborations perhaps or something?
We are dying to tour or do any collaborations with any bands. We are currently accepting offers. We are ready to take anything. A lot of our fans have been dying to see us live. We hope that some label or someone sees this interview.
9. Have you guys ever heard of Tumblr?
Yes, but we don’t have one and don’t plan on it. Facebook and Myspace is enough.
10. Any words for your fans and followers in The Black Circle?
Thanks to all of you who have been with us from the beginning. Also thanks to the fans who have recently discovered us and are fans now. We hope to someday meet all the faces that support us.
It’s been a pleasure, and thanks for letting us have the interview! All of your fans wish all of you the best of luck with your future work - we await it all eagerly!
So, there we have it! Our interview with the legendary Morbid and Karmageddon! Go like their official Facebook page HERE!
An interview with A Forest of Stars(Mister Curse & The Gentleman), brought to you by Philosopheme!
Without a doubt two of the most interesting musicians I’ve ever spoken too.
Hello, and thank you very much for agreeing to the interview! Hmm, I think this is a good place to start. Myself, and many others, really enjoy the Victorian aesthetic of A Forest of Stars - it’s a fresh take on black metal! How did this Victorian theme come to be?
The Gentleman: That was entirely my doing, and thus I apologise profusely for spewing such effrontery and fatigue on the world when it has much better things it could be doing with its time. I know I could. As for how it came to be, well, I’ve always possessed an unhealthy love and fascination for the 19th Century since I was a small child, and now some might argue it has finally possessed me. Whether that’s a good or a bad thing, I don’t know. But all that aside, it seemed a natural way to frame the band; to hold together the separate elements of music, lyrics, imagery, art, live shows, videos and photos. It gave a unity to the band – to our minds, at least! One question in and I’ve already reached unprecedented levels of pretention. Good gods.
2) When it comes to describing your style, steampunk is often mentioned. It’s an understandable link to make, but what’s your stand on this? Do you embrace or reject the notion?
The Gentleman: Here’s the thing: we’re not steampunk at all, but I have no problem with the genre (or indeed its denizens), and can see where the connection is made. If anything we are Victoriana, but more than that, we are trying to go further and create own little private universe that works within its own rules. Of course we are complete charlatans and have no clue what we’re doing, hence the confusion! I’m very fond of Steampunk and welcome it with open arms, but it is absolutely not what we are. We’re more a Victorian occult club that’s imbibed far too much and woken up hung over inside a very badly written fairytale. Or something.
Curse: I can see why people would make that assumption, but it was never our intention to create ‘steampunk black metal’ – our aim was simply to infuse the band with Victorian (in)sensibility!
3) Moving more onto the topic of your actual music… unique is a very fitting word! Have any other bands influenced your style at all? If not, are there any bands you listen to a lot in your spare time?
The Gentleman: Many bands have influenced us, right across the spectrum. The more obvious (Emperor, Burzum, Arcturus, In the Woods…, Sigh, Ulver, Ved Beuns Ende, GSY!BE) and the less so (Kate Bush, Tangerine Dream, Pink Floyd, Hawkwind, Steeleye Span, Blut Aus Nord, DsO) and that’s just for starters. Long lists are boring so I’ll stop now, but the initial idea was to do our own thing, inspired by that mid/late nineties breakout when Black Metal decided there were no boundaries any longer and anything was game. It is that spirit we sought to emulate, rather than any particular band. In our spare time, we all listen to lots of different genres, so even if it’s not conscious, I have no doubt the influences seep in to our music somewhere along the line.
Curse: Many bands have influenced me personally. To give a short list: Darkthrone, Skyclad, Swans, New Model Army, Ved Buens Ende… there are so many it is impossible to list them all. I spend much of my free time listening to music. I am currently under the influence of the new Mgła album.
4) The violin is a very prominent instrument in multiple songs of yours. What triggered the idea of incoroporating it into your music? I think it’s brilliant!
The Gentleman: The violin is a fantastic, expressive instrument, and we formed this band with it at the core, from day one. It was not added later, and Katheryne contributed writing just as equally as the rest of us, but from her violin point of view, instead of a guitar or piano. I suppose that could explain why sometimes it feels a little different, as we’re coning at it from an oblique angle?
Curse: The violin was an instrument we incorporated from day one, simply because we feel that it is a wonderful, haunting instrument, and I think that it adds immense weight and feeling to our music.
5) Do you intend on sticking to the long ambient songs found on both The Corpse of Rebirth and Opportunistic Thieves of Spring? I think you really perfected the atmospheric factor of your music.
The Gentleman: Put it this way, the new album has twice as many songs as our debut, but in the same amount of time. The idea was to try and distil our ideas down into only what was absolutely necessary, and we feel it is much better for it as a result. There are still plenty of atmospheric moments, and calm before storms. Of course, we are very proud of what we’ve done in the past, but equally, we wanted to challenge ourselves and do new things. Whether or not we’ve succeeded, only time will tell!
Curse: I would say that we have continued somewhat in that vein, I was intending to write less lyrics for this recording, though I seem to have somehow written more than previously. Whoops!
6) Can you give us an idea of what we can we expect from your upcoming album? The preview hints at more ambient/atmospheric pieces, but we can only guess!
The Gentleman: The new album is our first, fully proper attempt at a concept album. That is to say, not just a story recited over a series of random songs, but a full piece of music, with a beginning, middle and end. The songs are interconnected, and reference each other, with certain themes and melodies criss-crossing and reoccurring throughout the album. At least, that was the idea. It’s not really up to us to decide if we’ve managed to achieve anything as ambitious that. We tend to always get ideas above our station and bite off more than we can chew, so we’ll see. It could just a big mess to everyone’s ears. In terms of the actual music, there’s a lot more variety than on the previous two albums, lots of light and shade, and heavier and mellower parts. It’s an extension of what’s gone before, but certainly not an abandonment. We just like exploring!
Curse: This album is a little more direct than those preceding it, though we have attempted to instil plenty of mood altering sections. Lyrically, this album attempts to tell the story of a man at odds with himself and everything else, and his pretty tragic attempt at life. We follow him from cradle to other peoples’ graves, until he eventually arrives at his own undoing.
7) What would you class your music as? There’s so many genres floating around these days!
The Gentleman: God knows. Over-Indulgent Crap? Hideously Pretentious mess? Feebly Pathetic Attempt at Watered Down Black Metal? Any of those would do…
Curse: It is quitehard to say - I labelled us as ‘Unorthodox Black Metal’ in another interview, and I think that fits us well! We are a bit of whatever pleases us, and rather a lot of different music is guilty of this. I suppose you could call us ‘a mixed bag’ (just don’t ask what’s in the bag…)
8) Soon you’ll be releasing your third album. You’ve come a long way since 2008, when The Corpse of Rebirth was released. On Last.fm alone, you have over 16,000 listeners. First of all, how does that make you feel?
The Gentleman: Err, I have no idea, really! That I should possess a considerably larger sum of money in my bank account than the flea bitten dregs that currently reside within?
Curse: It is a fantastic feeling to have had the opportunity to create the music we want, and to find that others like it too. Apart from that, I am quite surprised to find ourselves at this point, wherever this is.
9) Secondly, what do you hope to achieve in the next four years?
The Gentleman: We’re averaging an album every two years, so hopefully we can excrete a couple more in that time frame – we’ve written quite a lot of new stuff already; I’d like to get the cycle down to 18 months, but that’s probably too ambitious. Other than that, just to tour more and visit wonderful people in interesting places. And to devour a lot of rich food. And maybe have a couple of drinks. But not too many; I’m getting old now.
Curse: I think we shall keep stumbling on and see where we end up. It is always a pleasure to create music, so I hope that we will continue to do so. I’ll drink your drinks.
10) It’s been a pleasure. To conclude the interview, is there anything you’d like to say to your fans?
The Gentleman: Well, thank you for taking the time to interview us. And to the people who like us: What the hell were you thinking, encouraging us? No good will come of it…
Curse: Thank you for taking the time to interview us. Oh, and the shadows are the place to look.
An interview with Malefic(Xasthur), brought to you by Philosopheme and forestofnihilism!
So, lately, forestofnihilism and myself have been talking with Scott Connor (Malefic) of Nocturnal Poisoning and ex-Xasthur. After talking for a while, we asked if we could get an interview from him. Since there haven’t been any interviews regarding Nocturnal Poisoning, we were sure his fans would love to hear what Scott has been cooking for these last few years. Forestofnihilism set up the interview, and we formed a couple of questions regarding Scott’s new project - just for you!
1). Well to start off, I have just one question concerning Xasthur; which was the most meaningful album for you? And if you don’t mind sharing, why?
Defective Epitaph, probably because I worked the hardest on that one, all the songs seemed really different from each other but also came together as a long piece; I knew that I did everything that I could have done. It was more like a time where the album title, a theme of sorts and idea came to mind early on while making it, so that gave the making of it a lot of fuel.
2). Now I know Xasthur got boring to you, but besides that, what really feeds the creation of Nocturnal Poisoning?
I would say discovering how many forms of other music I enjoy and enjoy trying to play, old and new. Over a few years ago, I started becoming fascinated with listening and playing blues, bluegrass, 60’s-70’s rock music, folk, gothic, a few older country songs, classical, ‘psychedelic’, doom and things like this. I refuse to use the word “influence” or name drop other bands to draw attention to my own. There are two colors that black metal bands paint with, gray and darker gray, but nowadays I’m feeling like I have a whole new box of colors, more to work with now, some of them ‘beautiful’, some of them ‘ugly’ to paint with, or, to paint a different picture with, with more contrasts between the dark and light, both setting each other up for bigger falls and drops and also bigger things rising. I think that I’m better at playing this sort of thing, acoustically, than I ever was at playing ‘black metal’.
3). I think this question is really intriguing for those that are really looking up to NP; will Nocturnal Poisoning always be a solo project, or will there be other members? If you intend on working with others, do you have anybody in mind?
At this moment, literally, I do worry that Nocturnal Poisoning might have to be a solo project, whether I like it or not. But yes, I have intentions of working with others, because it’s just getting too difficult and limiting in some areas to continue working on my own. I’m trying to get back to the place where I spent some time last winter because I have at least a second guitarist and a drummer there, a couple guys who play for a band called Gravesideservice. They are quite open minded and willing towards other music and you can tell by giving a few of their songs a chance.
4). Also, will Nocturnal Poisoning be a touring band?
That is definitely a big goal. I was not able to do that with the previous band for so many reasons. But I have to turn this into a live band or I will be up shit creek without a paddle. Making an album, only, doesn’t mean a damn thing anymore and does not do much for the band making it, it used to really be something, but today it’s not enough, not for the band and probably not for the listeners either.
5). You’ve been working on NP for quite some time now, you should let The Black Circle hear some of it, hahaha. No, but seriously; are your fans close to finally tasting this different side of Scott?
Maybe I should, probably I shouldn’t. When the time comes, I like people to listen to albums as a whole and not just a sample or two. Also, when I pressed the final Xasthur album myself, I finally did very well with it because there was no labels or “friends” to spoil it with free samples. I don’t trust anyone to have it until it’s on disc, for many reasons, actually. I’ve been burned several times with ‘leaked’ songs, maybe other musicians and bands can afford that, but I can’t. After the album comes out, I’m sure everyone will take the liberty of stealing it and ‘sharing’ it….but in the meantime, she’s mine. The album is getting close though, I have a problem with going too long without doing anything new and I won’t be able to run my mouth for very long.
6). Do you plan on including vocals on NP? And if so, will they be haunting and grim like we heard on Xasthur, or would you be using a clean vocalist? And if so, what lyrical themes do you wish to explore?
Having a vocalist is something I have just about given up on, it became so frustrating and also so many problems to deal with that I’m thinking of keeping it mainly an instrumental band. The more time that has gone by without finding a vocalist, the more I’ve made the songs complex enough to be good enough and listenable without vocals. If the right kind of vocalist falls into place someday, then great, but there’s no dire need for it. There were no plans of having any ‘haunting or grim’ vocals for this, by the way. If I were to explore any lyrical themes, I’m not really sure what they would be, I’d be open to many things, except writing about the same old shit I used to write about, I suppose. That was something else that needed to change but since I’m currently writing and recording everything myself, I was hoping to write ‘with’ someone, bounce some ideas back and forth, like get a little help in that area, but you see, now we’re back to the vocalist thing again, so fuck it.
7). To end our awesome interview between 2 awesome people, haha, have you heard of Tumblr before? (my favourite question)
I’m not sure, is that a band, Tumblr?
8). Any words for your fans and followers in The Black Circle?
Yes, I’m not going to be giving the same ‘minimalist’ alternative to black metal. And I think this is the first Nocturnal Poisoning interview.
So this is what’s going on with Nocturnal Poisoning! For more info and updates by Scott himself you should definitely like his official page on Facebook HERE.
Stay tuned, ‘cause we’ve got a few more interviews coming up!