dinsdag 19 april 2011

Interview (en): Aosoth

They were guests in our country during the Death Holy Death tour, along with Watain and Shining. Because their new album is due to be released online on April 22nd, and to look back at the tour that just ended, we had a chat with Aosoth singer MkM.

Black-Metal.nl-> S : What is the meaning of the name Aosoth?
MkM :
A goddess in the Pantheon of the Order of the Nine Angles, she represents Passion & destruction, she has been described with an arrow in her heart, not able to remove it or else death would occur. A tormented yet strong figure.
Black-Metal.nl-> P : How and when was Aosoth founded?
MkM :
In 2002, as a side project of Antaeus when we were reh’ massively with that band. Our drummer back then kept on missing them, so since we didnt want to loose the money to rent the place, we would switch instrument & do some more mid tempo tracks. At the time being, we didnt have lyrics but was singing rituals from the ONA. Note : Aosoth is not to be considered as a representative act of the ONA, my personal vision does not have to include the other band members (we’ve had around 10/15 different band members since 2002)

Black-Metal.nl-> P : What do you do in every day life aside of Aosoth?
MkM :
Bst & InrVI are both sound engineer & often work as sound guy or roadie for gigs. Bst has his own recording studio + works in a venue. I myself am working in the media/mag print, lay out & so on... Those jobs do allow us to invest money to have the band still alive, since it’s not with our record sales we could do anything. Nor even a thing at all....

Black-Metal.nl-> P : What are your band rehearsals like?
MkM :
Nothing like you would have expected I think. Since we did start as a duo (main guitar & me on vocals), all was done solely by Bst. Reh’ only did occur prior to live performance, most of the work done by musicians was accomplished on their own, with a metronome. Then we would gather to fix all. Most sessions we used (be them from england or other regions of france) were skilled & used to perform live, so we always did trust them.

Black-Metal.nl-> P : Which bands are an inspiration for you as a band?
MkM :
Maybe I would have been a better individual ten years ago for such question... lately I did get myself a bit distanced from the music scene, having been way too involved (from bands to label to distribution & just working for other bands) all got me sick and I had a “love/hate” relation to music. I did distance myself & the only “sounds” I would get into would have been industrial & martial music, from NON, Der blutharsch, Derniere volonté, Karjalan Sissit, Genocide Organ, Brighter death now, In slaughter natives... And as always Diamanda Galas... The other individuals in the band are still very into the metal scene and could be mentionning way more act than I could do.
Last black metal album I did play a damn lot on my stereo must have been Katharsis “fourth reich”.
Black-Metal.nl-> P : Which current bands do you admire?
MkM :
Watain for their professionnalism & devotion. Funeral Mist for the sickness they create through their art, Deathspell Omega for obvious reasons : they’re Unique.
Katharsis for providing an everlasting stream of violence.
AmenRa for their live performances, same goes for Karjalan Sissit.
Nox/Centurian from Holland is also a band I really do respect a lot and am looking forward hearing more from them !!!

Black-Metal.nl-> P : Is there room within Aosoth for innovative experimenting? Of will you mostly stay true to the real black metal sound?
MkM :
Mmmm, maybe this will be more obvious to you on the III release, but we always had a lot of elements from the martial industrial music scene added, as well as “noise/power electronics” on one demo some years ago. Also, the first album has a lot of thrash metal elements to it, and some old school death metal parts on the “ashes of angels”
The essence and concept remains faithful to black metal, music wise, we do not have any specific boundaries. We do not sound like a copycat from a norwegian band for instance, nor do we really have the melodies of swedish black metal.
Yet do not expect anything that wouldnt fit our vision, thus anything that would be added to Aosoth will always be haunting and with a “negative” aura.
Black-Metal.nl-> S : When will the new album be coming out?
MkM :
Out as we speak, most distributors should have the copies in stock by the end of april 2011. Right now, the cd & the lp versions are available on our label webstore (agonia records)
We didnt get to see how those did turn out yet, still awaiting our copies. Very much looking forward seeing the print on the lp version, varnish print on white cover : must be quite impressive. Also we do get it in transparent vinyl version & splatter white vinyl/transparent.
Total of 500 lps.
Black-Metal.nl-> S : Will there be samples for us to listen to while we wait?
MkM :
Some samples are on our myspace.com/aosoth616, also on reverbnation & on Agonia’s website. Those using facebook can find all the informations about it there. Since the album is composed of six scenes, most tracks are from 6 to 9 minutes long, so we’re just uploading two tracks only on streaming so far. III-1 & III-3.

Black-Metal.nl-> S : Is there a story behind the artwork for the new album?
MkM :
Tricky to really answer... mostly a very straight to the point visual. All is there, graphicaly efficient : the III & logo are visible, coherent, making a one solid visual on the cover for the cd version. Lp version is a bit more subtle, since using varnish printing on the cover for logo & text – also having a white background, while the cd remains in black.
The columns of flesh are close up pictures from my arms, all makes sense to me – that is what matters. Aosoth has to be perceived like an Art performance where we do create something that would match our vision & expectations. If some individuals can relate to it & enter our world, then perfect. This is done for us in the first place, then exposed. You would also notice that there is no pictures of my “face” again on this album, on the previous one, I was just a shade yet present, this time, only the bass player & guitar player are in the layout. The more we go on, the more I disappear & just live within the distant screams recorded.

Black-Metal.nl-> S : What will the album be like? What can we expect?
MkM :
Something different from what we did in the past... as always with each Aosoth release, there is a change, still leading in the same direction & having a genuine approach to the sinister path... but getting “deeper” and proposing an album that might get many to get away from us & yet bring others. III is not an album of “songs”, more of an experience and a compact audio trip to darker desires.
Black-Metal.nl-> S : What is the new album's main theme, lyric wise?
MkM :
One lyric only & divided in between the six parts that compose the album. Lyrics are enclosed this time, so I guess one will have to check by themselves & have their own interpretations about it. Somehow very personal, am still wondering if that was a good thing to print them or not. Time shall tell.
Black-Metal.nl-> P : Are there French black metal bands which deserve more attention than they're getting at this time?
MkM :
Hell Militia, Temple of Baal, VI, the Order of Appolyon, Antaeus, Deathspell Omega... those are names that would come up when having to think of the french bands I could recommand. To be honest, I’ve never been too much in touch with the local scene since any bands I had in the past mostly got insulted by our own scene. Most french bands are trying to be either swedish or norwegian... being “true” or in those clichés...
Black-Metal.nl-> P : The black metal sound originated from Norway, 25 years ago. At this moment there are a lot of Norwegian bands, trying to extend their boundaries. What is your view on that?
MkM :
25 years ago? Would say it really got bigger around 92/93 with all the media attention added to it... Well the second wave of black metal did arrive with Mayhem, dark throne & those bands... the rawer response to the over exposure of “death metal” back then and giving a new sense to underground.
I’m 36 myself, and do recall getting those releases out, some : couldnt stand them at that point. Blasphemy was among my fave “brutal” acts related to the genre.
Norway lately, cannot stand ulver for instance, never got to consider them being anything than a talented musician just making fun of everything.
And mmmm no, cannot really think of much bands, it’s just a waste of time, I have no link with such genre I guess.
Black-Metal.nl-> P : Does Aosoth have a higher purpose aside of making music?
MkM :
We do have an higher purpose ourselves & through Aosoth we just use music as a ritual somehow, but the band is not here to convert anything – more to convey a message and atmosphere.
Black-Metal.nl-> P : How did you experience the tour with Shining and Watain ?
MkM : Mixed feelings, was perfect with the watain & shining guys, knew the watain guys for years anyway, wrote one lyrics on their second album & we always had a good relationship. Conditions were really good, just too bad about the fact we couldnt have a proper sound engineer, so we were each night depending on the local one from the venue, who just had to be there for us, thus working 30 minutes didnt seem to motivate any of those during those 17 gigs & we ended up having to perform in very lame conditions and often having a terrible sound for the audience... that got me way bitter, but we did do our best to deliver what we had to do.
Black-Metal.nl-> P : Is Niklas Kvarforth easy to deal with in every day life?
MkM :
Depends who you are. With us, he’s been a great man & quite an individual. But I guess that he could be VERY wrong to tons. Getting to hear him sing “like a virgin” was a very pleasurable moment, very unexpected.
Black-Metal.nl-> P : How bad is the smell in the tour bus with Watain sleeping there in the same area?
MkM :
MMmmm would say that either I got used to the smell very fast & barely ever did notice anything or maybe I’m just sick & cannot smell anything anytime. No seriously, would rather have the stench of death around than having to smell the joints & junk food like I had to suffer some years ago (in the tour we did in 2002 with antaeus) but to each its own...
Black-Metal.nl-> P : What can we expect from Aosoth in the coming future?
MkM :
Right now, we’re working on the promotion of that album, interviews & so on. Also considering having back a second session guitar player with us for live performance, in view to have a bigger sound and also perform some tracks which we couldnt do with just one guitar player. As well as having OUR OWN FUCKING sound engineer so we would never have to go through such fucking bullshit situation as on this tour where the local guys really didnt give a shit nor were doing their work. No live performances coming up, we might record one track for a comp lp to come out on Art of Propaganda in Germany... And maybe a limited 7”... Nothing else so far. We are also working on two gigs for Antaeus (in which bst & inrvi are also session members) in june in germany & texas in december.
Black-Metal.nl-> S : Will you be coming back to Holland soon, after the album has been released?
MkM :
Who knows? The gig we did in the Baroeg the year before was really a great gig (along with hell militia & blacklodge). I hope to perform there once with Nox/Centurian, or to meet J of Urfaust again for intoxication !

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