1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the musical project?
1. Was previously the bassist in a melodic death metal band called Valediction but once we disbanded in 2012, a year later I setup Sonus Mortis, which is a one man band/studio project from Ireland focusing on a mix of death-doom metal with some symphonic/black leanings. Some just call it dark metal which is a good encompassing term for the music presented.
The project really came about because I had a lot of material that didn't really suit Valediction and the material was building up after the band finished up. So I decided to go into Trackmix Studios in 2013 where we recorded the Valediction debut album and I recorded a 3 song demo there. I was pretty happy with the results so I decided I would continue with it.
2.In March you had released a new album, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the demo you had released in 2013?
2. The album 'Propaganda Dream Sequence' is a concept album and with that, I wanted a certain sound to go along with it, a common theme associated with the riffing/vocal lines/synths etc. The sound is more focused on the album. The demo is a bit darker, a bit more raw on the production end of things. I’ve set out what I wanted to achieve on the album but I will be returning to that demo sound again in the future.
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects you explore with your music?
3. The concept album explores a futuristic dystopia where government controls every aspect of peoples lives. Apathy is strife; there is no enjoyment/emotion in the process of life anymore. Governments have installed machines where they inject propaganda into peoples dreams. The narrator from the start of the album realises this, struggling with coming to terms with it all but starts to recode the machines to bring other people to this realisation. Topics like religion, apathy, privacy, government, censorship, death are all linked into this story.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Sonus Mortis'?
4. It’s basically the Latin for ‘Sound of death’. Sonus can also mean noise/style. I find it quite hard to think up decent band names nowadays that haven’t been used but I really think this links up well with the music.
5.With this project you record everything by yourself but you also have experience working with a whole band, how would you compare being solo to working with a full line-up?
5. It is tough in the recording phase doing everything yourself but I absolutely love having full control over the creative process. I would have been uneasy at times when someone would change a riff or structure of a song I wrote, obviously sometimes this can work out for the best so I do lose that scope but overall I prefer working on my own. I can’t blame anyone anymore now haha. With a full line-up you are gigging, connecting with more bands/people and getting the word of your band out there. Now I solely rely on the internet, be it social media like blogs/youtube/bandcamp/facebook and word of mouth. I was never mad into gigging and it became a complete drain for me, overtime it was zapping my interest so I’m happy where I am at now with music.
6.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?
6. Haven’t looked and no interest. A lot of labels will be interested in bands that will tour, go out onto the road, and have a good history of previous shows, supporting good bands, a lot of determination and pure effort needed. It’s not something I envision for Sonus Mortis, right now anyway. If there was a label interested in distribution/promotion for the albums then I would love to see where that would lead. DIY is working out for me anyway for the moment; there is something nice about sending people your album directly.
7.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black, doom and death metal?
7. It has been good so far. I have been sending albums to so many places I never thought I would be. Places like Japan, Singapore, Austria, Germany, US, Russia, Italy, Poland to name a few. It is nice to hear feedback from those people also, or being asked to go play in Greece, even sign the album haha.
8.Are you currently involved with any other musical projects these days?
8. No unfortunately I would not be able to commit to anything else. My creative thoughts lie solely with Sonus Mortis music.
9.Where do you see yourself heading into musically during the future?
9. I actually have a path set out for the project. I have over 40 songs written and I’m still writing, wrote 2 songs this week. I’m starting to bunch them together, be it doom/death/black type of songs. I have another 3 albums ready to go if I wanted. But I want to get it right and not rush, these songs can and probably will change over time. For the second album I want it to be more symphonic death akin to Septicflesh, Shade Empire. I have the songs ready to record just need to set the dates but first I really need to practice as they are much faster than the debut songs. Then for the third album I want it to hark back to the demo material. So there is plenty to look forward to. I feel there is a time limit on this kind of thing, Sonus Mortis won’t be around forever and I will make do with this time now while I still have the passion for it.
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?
10. If you asked me 10 years ago I would have said NIN, Marilyn Manson, Fear Factory haha. Anathema, Septicflesh, Katatonia, My Dying Bride, Funeral, Paradise Lost, Nevermore, Hypocrisy, Dimmu Borgir are the mainstream bands I would listen to on occasion. Also love film scores/classical music. But as time has gone on I find myself going more towards the underground for music to inspire me. The Howling Void is a brilliant one man symphonic funeral death metal project for example and right now I’m listening to the album ‘Earthless’ by Doom:vs, quality death-doom check it out. There is also some quality Irish underground bands that are releasing material on par with international standards, bands like Dichotomy, Malthusian, Slidhr, Darkest Era, Vile Regression, Dead Label, Ilenkus, I’m sure I’m missing a good few, I mean, the list is expanding and that is only a good thing for the growth of underground music here in Ireland.
11.What are some of your non musical interests?
11. PC Gaming. Nothing beats it.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
12. Please check out www.sonusmortis.com or www.facebook.com/sonusmortisband for news and updates on the upcoming second album ‘War Prophecy’. You can stream music for free from http://sonusmortis.bandcamp.com/
Thanks for the interview and supporting underground Irish metal