Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Katakombi Interview

1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?
Donner: Katakombi originates from Helsinki, Finland where we formed band around 2011 with the idea of making the type of music we, ourselves would listen.  Having four members, we cultivate the songs carefully targeting a grim experience to which we all can relate to. The musical instruments we've used so far are synths, drums, guitar, bass and vocals, all using plenty of fuzz and distortion at times.

2.So far you have released 2 ep's, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical sound that is present on both recordings and also how do they differ from each other?

Saarikoski: Usually our sound is described with words such as doom, death and sludge. These genre boundaries hardly have meaning to us though, as we have already forged our own style of gloomy and violent metal. Breaking the rules is integral part of the style – we have tried to signal that with the term avantgarde.
The first record Hämärän vartija includes four tracks on a cassette, split on two sides. The new self-titled record is a 12" inch vinyl and it has a monumental track "Väärä kuu" on side A and two mid-lenght thrashing songs on side B, namely "Liejuhaudan vanki" and "Sokea jumala".

Both albums were recorded, mixed and mastered in different places, by different people, so there's a difference in tone. Also the songwriting evolved during the time between records. To me the new album is focused into deep contrasts between the cold ancient space and the burning world of modern man.

3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
Donner: Death, desecration and the end of mankind.

Saarikoski: Chaos, insanity and the sublime.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Katakombi'?
Donner: It's originally from a song title our guitarist Saarikoski came up with. The name symbolizes the deep misty caverns of human mind and humanity, which have inspired most of our themes so far.
Saarikoski: Yeah. I admit we're not the first metal band to rely on the images of underworld, haha. But as a mythological concept I find it as relevant as ever. Maybe the worship of sun, growth and the so-called divine birth has gone too far? Just like the surface of the earth, the kingdom of the dead is getting more and more crowded. Katakombi taps into the energy inside the earth which is older than any of the lifeforms we know.
5.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?
Donner: Katakombi has been lucky to get to play shows with bands such as Dark Buddha Rising, Oranssi Pazuzu, Domovoyd, Usko, Desert Lord, Sink, just to name a few. Many of them have been great, but the best ones usually happen when we have had a series of shows.

The stage performance, as we experience it, is focused and intense. We attempt to make it visual, with lighting and props, while still keeping the music in the center of things. It definitely is a different experience live.
6.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?
Donner: Yes, we're planning a European tour for the autumn 2014 with our fellow band Domovoyd. On top of that were actively playing gigs throughout Finland of course, next ones during the autumn.
7.The new ep is going to be released through Hamahakki Music, can you tell us a little bit more about this label?
Donner: Sure. It's basically our own label we came up with. We were working with some labels on this newest release but due to bad luck and bad timing things got delayed and we couldn't wait no longer, so we did this one on our own.

About the label itself: the name stands for spider, which symbolizes the movements and behavior of the animal which are rapid at times, unpredictable and stealthy. Also the insect itself is pretty creepy, sucking out the entrails from the creatures it captures.

There's very likely to be more releases in the future from the Hämähäkki Music, with focus on strange and creepy stuff.
8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of doom and death metal?
Donner: We feel it's been very positive. It looks like the audience appreciates the uncompromising artistic approach we are trying to nurture.
Saarikoski: Especially people who appreciate not only extreme metal, but also other musical styles such as prog or noise seem to find something compelling in our tunes.
9.When can we expect a full length album and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
Donner: The next album, which is a full length, is already in the works and we're composing songs towards that goal. We've also picked a producer for to help us on this, who is keen to work with us. Regarding the schedule, it is still too early to tell.

Musically we try to evolve constantly and make everything better and a bit different. It is worth to mention though, that the music will have same eerie and grim feeling built into it as with the two earlier records though.

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?
Donner: Influences are from a variety of bands and styles. Plenty of good music out there. Right now Aosoth sounds great and also Domovoyd as the sun is blazing hotter and hotter.

Saarikoski: This week I've been mostly listening to Vinnie Vincent, Sokea Piste, Sink and Anatomia.
11.What are some of your non musical interests?
Mrcö: Drugs.
Saarikoski: Fishing.

Donner: Haha, nothing to add.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Saarikoski: Buy or trade the new vinyl and come to check our gigs.

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