Nachtblut's Askeroth Talks Dark Metal And New Album "Dogma"
Germany's Nachtblut defies the conventions of extreme music, freely mixing electronic sounds with black and symphonic metal, and that melding of opposing musical worlds has reached new heights with the band's latest release "Dogma" (reviewed here).
Vocalist Askeroth recently corresponded with Metalunderground.com to give fans a deeper look into the world of Nachtblut's dark metal, including signing on with Napalm Records and recording the latest album. Check out the full interview below for a run-down on the band's history, an explanation of the some of the lyrics, and to see Askeroth's incredulity when I mentioned that some of the music feels like it would make a great video game soundtrack.
xFiruath: For our readers who aren't familiar with Nachtblut, can you give me a brief rundown of the band´s history and formation?
Askeroth: We are a dark metal band from Germany. In 2007 we released our first album, "Das erste Abendmahl" (The First Supper), produced just by our own. We received quite a good feedback to our album and had therefore several gigs with well known bands like Immortal, Watain, Eisregen, Destruction, Endstille etc. In 2009 the second album "Antik" was released, with its success we managed to get a contract with the label Napalm Records and they re-released the album 2011. And now its time for "Dogma.“
xFiruath: Tell me about how you got signed with Napalm Records, and how is the fit working out so far?
Askeroth: Well, we did not get the contract under normal circumstances. Normally a band applies to sign up at a label, for us it was the other way around, and nothing else was expected, just because we never tried to apply, as our principle. Now then, Napalm Records showed a big interest in our band, they had information about us we could reason, that they are observing us for a long period of time by now, and we liked that pretty much and signed. The cooperation is quite fair, they know what they do and let us our freedom we need.
xFiruath: Soundwise, how would you personally compare “Dogma“ to your earlier releases?
Askeroth: It is recorded in a much better quality, we had a really good producer, and it is easy to hear that. On the other side the album has more elegance, compactness, and it is more traceable.
xFiruath: What sort of themes are present on the album and do you create lyrics that are open to interpretation or straightforward and meant to be construed one particular way?
Askeroth: I would say, from both parts a bit. The song "Ich trinke Blut" (I'm Drinking Blood) is a critique about vegetarian do-gooders and intensive mass animal farming, and I think only few would see the same, it is not that obvious neither right nor wrong. On the other hand there are also songs like "Bu?sakrament" (Sacrament of Penance) there in we mention pedophile priests as obvious as possible. Our songs cover many topics, fancifulness or murder, anti-religious themes, we are asking many ethical questions and sometimes it is a mixture of art and social-criticism. My aim for the song "Vulva" was, despite of passing criticism on society, to describe a femicide as aesthetically as possible.
xFiruath: Tell me a bit about the recording for “Dogma.“ Where did it take place and who did you work with?
Askeroth: The vocals where recorded at Trollheimstudio in Osnabrück together with our studio manager Sieve, we also recorded "Antik" there, but all instruments too. This time everything else was done in Berlin at Ingo Hampf, he was our producer and composed some parts. Altogether recording the album took us a whole month, a really tough month, I need to say.
xFiruath: On the production side, do you prefer extreme metal to have a crisp and clear production, a fuzzy or organic production, or somewhere inbetween?
Askeroth: I never try to sound fuzzy, organic or extreme, the aim is reached, when we are satisfied with our sound, when the band likes it, what it is called is the last thing I care about.
xFiruath: Several of the tracks strongly create a video game soundtrack vibe for me personally. Are there any gamers in the band and would you consider game music to be an influence on your craft?
Askeroth: To be honest, I do not know the difference between video game soundtracks and "normal music." If you have to think of Tetris or Super Mario when you listen to our music, I could understand your point, but please! And yes, when the weather sucks and I need to calm down I am on for some rounds of Call of Duty, but I don't think it influences the way I compose, otherwise I had included much more often sounds of an M16 or exploding grenades into my refrains.
xFiruath: Do any of the Nachtblut members have any other musical projects active right now?
Askeroth: No, we are all married to Nachbtlut and nobody cheats.
xFiruath: What bands have you been headbanging to lately and are there any releases other than your own that you are really looking forward to this year?
Askeroth: Cradle of Filth and Rammstein.
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