Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Obsidian Interview

1. Can you update us with what is going on with the band these days?
At the moment there is a lot going on around the band because we welcomed two new members to the family: our bass player Gerben became a dad, and a couple of months before I did the same! So that is the main focus for some of us at the moment. But, as Candlelight released our second full length Point Of Infinity in November, we are receiving a lot of positive feedback in the press and that is absolutely great! We are planning to do some shows and touring as soon as possible!

2. Currently you are signed to Candlelight Records, what expectations do you have of the label and how do you feel about the support that they have given you so far?

Just getting picked up by Candlelight, being one of the metal label icons, is very cool. A lot of the bands that really got me into metal were also signed to Candlelight – that we might end up being label mates with them is something I never expected! As the reviews and interviews are getting in from all over the globe, it seems like they stood up to their end of the bargain concerning promotion of the record – and that’s great, because we would be nowhere if people never heard our material.

3. How would you describe the musical style and lyrical content of the new album?

Every metalhead seems to interpret a subgenre in his or her own way , so throwing around subgenres to pin down a style is mostly a futile occupation. But to give it a try: it’s a crossover between death-, math- and progmetal with a juicy tinge of trippy guitar freakery in the background. We tried to give the tracks on ‘Point Of Infinity’ a bit more consistency, as we felt that the tracks on our previous record ‘Emerging’ had a bit too much of everything in every track.
All in all the new album feels as a more solid work, still containing a lot of different elements, but more jelled together. As you can see in the beautiful artwork – done by Robbe K and Sjaak – the atmosphere is very dark and fiery - very metal indeed! The lyrics deal with images and impressions of what a human being might experience during the journey through live. It’s a mental and emotional exploration of the different sceneries too which your mind is exposed and of the way the mind works to create the world you live in. Are you a victim of circumstance or just an overwhelmed conductor in front of the biggest orchestra you ever experienced? Something like that. Anyway, in the end it’s just what you guys, the listeners, make from it. So don’t be misguided by my blabbering, just check it out for yourself and see what you find!

4. What is the meaning and inspiration behind the band's name?

Obsidian is a volcanic glass that through history obtained a lot of mystical and mythical characteristics – especially in the Inca and Aztec tradition. As the name of the band was already chosen before I became a member, I’m not really familiar with the initial motivation to choose the name. I think that because of the dark but translucent, mystical quality of the material and its sharp cutting properties when worked, the name suits the band very well.

5. Do you have any plans for a U.S. tour with the new album?

Touring the US is one of the things we really would like to do! We hope that the attention the album is gaining in the media will enable us to make the transatlantic jump! At the moment we are exploring ways to make it happen – the possibilities with booking agents etc. – but if anyone reading this wants to see us play in the US: help us make it happen!

6. How have extreme metal fans worldwide reacted to your musical sound so far?

Over all the reactions are very positive: some people directly and totally tap into the Obisidan vein but some are a bit more reserved. Our style is not that easy to get into if you’re not already inclined to listen too experimental and progressive acts in metal. On the other hand, fans of the really extreme stuff think we are not extreme enough and fans of math-tech stuff think we are not mind bending enough. It’s very difficult to please everyone and still do what you feel like doing – unless you are a prefab pop industry robot whore.

7. What direction would you like to take the band into on future releases?

We would like to continue to get our music out there more and more, which should be possible with the help of a label like Candlelight, providing international exposure. We all are working guys with families and what not, far from able to live from our music. So we’ll have to balance music and private live, but – as said – we are aiming to get out into the world, play and tour in Europe and hopefully the US because that’s what we really would like to do!
Music wise I have no idea what will happen. We tend to surprise ourselves with the compositions that turn up and we never know how they will develop before they end up on stage or a record. I personally think that the slower, heavier, darker groovy stuff is what we are good at. So I would like to dive into that side of the band a bit. But I can’t resist a well placed blast beat or a battering polka, so we’ll see what happens.

8. What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your music and also what are you
listening to nowadays?

Death, Opeth and Cynic are some of the bands we almost all listen to. But we also have very different tastes and likes. Robbe and I really like the Dave Matthews Band for example, while Sjaak and Simon and Robbe too also really dig the more experimental styles of music. Gerben has a hidden lust for funk rock (Primus and the Chili Peppers) which I really share. It’s all in the mix and I couldn’t really tell you exactly how it all influences, but it does. Chilling to some Ravi Shankar on a Sunday morning might lead to a very interesting jam the following evening in the rehearsal room.

9. Outside of music, what are some of your interests?

Also very different! Sjaak and I are into running, Robbe is very creative and just as Simon working in audio engineering and production. Gerben likes to travel and he has his sporty streaks now and then. Nothing special to be honest, we’re all pretty ordinary guys. Except for Simon because he is a ninja, but you can’t tell that to anyone.

10.Any final words or thoughts before we close this interview?

Thanks a lot for giving us a chance to voice ourselves! If you did not already: check us out and if you like what you hear, spread the word!