INTERVJU S SATYRICON
Questions answered by: Satyr and Frost
The interview took place at Inferno festival in Oslo, Norway on 13/4/2001
Most of the time I find it quite confusing when I meet members from
black metal scene, as they wear corpsepaint on stage or on photos and with a
certain aura of dark mystery filling up the place of their presence... it usually
gives you the felling of minding your own business and let them be...
Nevertheless, in real life most of them look quite normal with all these human
abilities to laugh and so on, which can make them difficult to recognize.
After contacting Moonfog Ann has told me she and Satyr should be at the Inferno
festival and said that I should find them there for doing the interview with
Satyricon.. Since I didn't have the slightest clue about Ann's appearance I've
decided to look for Satyr instead.. After I scanned the place a couple of times
I've noticed a guy that I figured could be Satyr (with slight differences).
This guy here had, hmm...hair? So I hesitated for a minute and in the meanwhile
Frost has appeared. It wasn't difficult to recognize him though, as he didn't
look much different from how he had looked on some photos, it was just... This
aura feeling I told you about - well, he seemed to carry it with himself even
when he was off the stage...
So despite this stupid feeling I had I decided to go with the Khold's shirt
that "supposed Satyr" was wearing and I addressed the guy. It turned out he
was Satyr (bravo me!?) and he was responsible for making the sound for Khold
and Gehenna who had performed later that day. He said that I should find Ann
to arrange the interview. Fun!!! His tip to look for a blond wasn't very useful
though, as I later found out that Ann's hair was black. Luckily for me Ann turned
out to be a very capable person so in a couple of minutes she found Satyr and
Frost and here is the result of the interview:
How far are you with the material for the new album?
Satyr: I guess it is pretty much done. What is left... I was making some final
arrangements. The song material and the lyrics I consider finished for quite
a while, although there are certain changes that have been made as we progress.
It's basically finished but I am working on arranging the songs and the way
I see it now... I do not really now. I thought I will record in June. Maybe
it still will be June, but if I am not satisfied with June, I will move it to
July. I just keep on working every day so we will see, but we have the new record
coming up, that's for sure.
Can you give us a hint about it?
Frost: It occurred to me: it's going to be the darkest record we did so far.
It's kind of strict, the frames for music are very tight up and there is a lot
of authority in music. Cold and strict.
Do you intend to go to the same studio as you did for the last album?
Satyr: No, there is a studio in Denmark called Puk studio that is out in the
countryside, so it is a remote and peaceful area. Which is quite convenient
as far as concentration, focus goes. Further on it is a studio in which bands
such as Judas Priest, Sisters of Mercy... a lot of big bands worked in and that
makes me feel comfortable about going there, because big names usually don't
go for low file studios. I heard a lot of good things about this studio as far
as location, technical equipment and all that... And when they have such a list
of clients, that makes me even more assure that's going to be a good choice.
You two are the only full members of Satyricon. So you make and record music
by yourself. How does it feel playing with the session members?
Frost: It's a different experience. The line-up that we have now is the
same as we previously had on Rebel Extravaganza and it seems to be the perfect
choice for the band, so we will continue with it. Also we took to the studio
a bass and a guitar player when we did Slayer's cover Raining Blood.
Satyr: That cover is not for the new album, it's for a tribute album.
Who chose which song to cover?
Satyr: It wasn't like we set down to discus that. It was all natural, because
we have played that song for quite a while. I believe that album and that song
is so essential to us that is not really that much to discuss. It's like one
of the most essential songs from one of the most essential records ever.
With each album you not just musically but also visually distinguish yourselves
from the others. Do you pay much attention to get more unique with the way you
Satyr: Conventional look wouldn't be very interesting for us. For us extremity
is a vital point. It's not about looking this way or that way, it just got to
have the certain edge of it, whether it would be aggressive, dark, psychotic...
Doesn't matter as long as it has the edge and it wouldn't be "us" to do something
which is stereotype. It's not necessarily making deliberate decision, that could
be the case, but is also a question of what you like as a person - if you are
a follower or an individualist.
Your live performance - you use a lot of effects during the show. But do
you know the line from where on effects stop supporting music and become a disturbing
factor, because people would stop moving, responding to music and they would
watch the show instead? Do you think of that when you prepare the show?
Frost: Do you mean like visual effects? I think it should be pretty extreme
to steal so much attention, to be a negative factor. I guess that's quite impossible.
We would like to spend more on live shows, having more extreme visual effects
but you can't afford having a lot of fire effects each night. So I guess there
is no danger from stealing to much attention .
What about the support bands - on some tours there are 4, 5 and people get
tired before the main act. Do you have control over support bands - how many
and which will go on tour with you?
Frost: We have a limit - 3 bands.
Satyr: What I would prefer is to actually have no support bands. We have played
a few shows in Norway where we played just by ourselves and I like that a lot.
It's not about not wanting to share the stage with anyone, it's about the convenience
of not having to think about making room for another band on the stage, soundcheck
time, backstage space, such simple things. Also, I feel that there are very
few bands that I like and which have the possibility to tour with us. It's not
many bands that could open up for us that I like, so whenever we go out we sort
of end up with bands, with which I don't have the relationship. A band like
Behemoth - I don't dislike Behemoth, but I don't like them either, it's just...
I have no strong feelings, be negative or positive - they are just there.
And usually you have also some local bands...
Satyr: Oh, local acts, that's really horrible... And the worst thing about it
- those bands, local bands they have to pay a lot of money to be our local support
acts. But we don't get any of that, the promoter takes all that money. So the
only thing that could make up for it is if we would get like 50% of that money,
but we don't even see any of it. So for us it's nothing but asshole.
Are you planing any concerts before releasing the new album?
So you seem to get more and more credit for your efforts.. You hit the national
chart, you won the Alarm prize for best live band. How does it effect you knowing
people do appreciate your work?
Satyr: I guess all over the world and especially in Norway, but I would
say all over the world we have become more known for being a very good band.
What I mean is now we are not necessarily just a very good black metal band,
but being considered a very good band. The people that are not specifically
interested in black metal music refer to Satyricon as : "Yes, that's really
a good band!" I think that's one of the consequences. Also my impression is,
when they look upon us - people outside black metal - we are their alibi to
like black metal, you know what I mean. Here was this award here in Oslo where
a journalist said - I was about to present an award - and she said: "Please
welcome bla,bla,bla from what I consider to be the only black metal act that
makes me shiver down my spine." And to me that was a great compliment, because
most of them, outsiders, consider it to be noisy, but when they let it come
in, to their souls - that's a great compliment, make me feel that what I am
doing is a universal darkness, aggression...
(Eibon has made a great stir and since Satyr is one of the members of this
band I took an opportunity to ask a couple of question about this band:)
Members of Eibon has built their reputation in different bands, projects, but
who started the band and put all of you together?
Satyr: Killjoy - he didn't know Fenriz and he didn't know me but... Maniac was
the first person that was contacted and they were supposed to do the band, than...
obviously Phil came in to be the part of Necrophagia and than he wanted to bring
in Fenriz. I was actually the last person that was asked and I guess... I was
supposed to have a sort a sub role in the band, just being a bass, guitar player,
but I became a little bit more prominent after a while, since the musical direction
that we all decided upon was something that I was able to write very well.
So how active are you when it comes to making music for Eibon?
Satyr: I am the one that makes most of the music, I guess I do about 70% of
the music. But the rest is being made by Phil. Most of the lyrics are written
by Killjoy, but Phil and Fenriz have written a couple as well.
Who is doing the vocals now?
Everybody apart from Fenriz. I would say Phil and Killjoy are the lead singers
and I do a little bit of back vocals here and there, certain lines... I guess
it's all three of us, but mainly focused around those two Americans.
I guess Eibon is only a studio band?
The album should be released on Moonfog?
Satyr: In Europe it will be released on Moonfog, not in America - I don't know
who is going to release it in America.
When can we expect it?
In winter/ spring next year. I mean if we wanted to the album could have been
done by now, but we made different priorities. I had to concentrate on my main
thing which is Satyricon and Phil had to concentrate on his main thing which
is obviously Pantera. Half of the album is already recorded, but it has to wait.
Your previous projects - Wongraven and Storm are put on ice?
If you could travel back in time and bring something into the present - what
would that be?
Satyr: What about bringing back the decency from the Viking age into modern
society - that would be something!
What do you think is the worst personal characteristic human beings have
Frost: Obviously mentality. Feel to be weak, stupid, which it seems to be a
driving base for lots of people.
So what is one personality characteristic you wish you would have?
Satyr: I heard so many characteristic about myself - true and false, that I
am totally bewilder.
But from your point of view...
Frost: I would say a firmer discipline, but I am working on it, though. Still
a bit to lazy... Satyr: I feel that... what's important to me I try to work
on it constantly. I don't see myself having any major ambitions about certain
things that can be attached to my personality, I just see there are a lot of
small things that I want to improve.
Besides the bands that are signed by Moonfog - can you think of any that
you feel they would deserve more attention?
Satyr: That's a hard question, because when I think of that, I think of stuff
like 666 International album - why are they being passed like that... I think
a real good album which I haven't heard so much talked about is an album called
Hybris by Swedish band ─nglagard, it's a progressive rock - it's not something
that I listen to, but it is like a major record. I heard people saying good
stuff about them, but they would deserve more attention.
I asked them to write it down and so Frost has written the name of the band
Satyr mentioned and also the other one "Svartedauden" which is When's album
- they are from Norway and play black/death...