Keep Of Kalessin hae just released their brand new album Epistemology (see our review here) and we recently had a chat with Obsidian C. to find out a bit more about it and to discuss the band’s upcoming appearance at Incineration Festival. See what happened below!
Can you introduce yourself and tell me a bit about Keep Of Kalessin?
Hey! I’m Arnt Obsidian aka. Obsidian C. and I’m the guitarist, songwriter and front man of Keep Of Kalessin. Keep Of Kalessin is a metal band from Norway playing extreme metal. We take everything that we like in death, black, thrash, power metal, heavy metal and rock and stir it up in a big pot to make our very own unique style of something we call Epic Extreme Metal. It’s big, melodic, yet intense and extreme and we really don’t sound like any other band so those who haven’t heard us should check out our albums!
You’ve recently released your new album Epistemology. Can you describe your writing and recording process?
I am the one who normally writes the music. Sometimes I jam a couple of riffs on the guitars before I record them to remember them, but some of the epic and melodic music comes from daydreaming or thoughts just wandering. I can start with a riff in my mind and then expand to other parts and add melodies. When I make the music in my mind first I normally have an idea of the whole production with several guitar tracks, keyboards, drums and vocals.
I do most pre-productions and recordings at home before we ship the files to mix and add drums. This means that we actually record guitars, bass and keyboards before we track the drums.
Did you do anything different compared to past releases?
Yeah, we recorded the drums last. The reason for this was actually that on Reptilian we tracked the drums, then sent it to Daniel Bergstrand in Sweden and he is a quite busy guy so I was sitting doing nothing for 2 months before I got the drums back and was ready to start tracking guitars. But when we started tracking guitars on top of the drums we got, I said “mute the drums” and then tracked all guitars on just click anyway.
So at that time I decided that we would track the drums last. And when you start thinking about it, I’ve never thought “wow, that’s a cool drum break, I need to adapt my riff to match that”. But the drummer is playing to match the riff, right? So it’s actually strange that so many record the drums first when you start thinking about it. Then it’s easier for the drummer to adapt to the music and not the music to the drums. Maybe that’s why so many bands suck and only focus on drums and rhythmics in today’s scene? 😉
Were there any songs that were more of a challenge to get right?
Not really. All songs have their own identity and sometimes a challenge in their own right. However, some of the fastest stuff is really a challenge on the drums sometimes like the bonus track Novae Ruptis and maybe Universal Core.
Any interesting tales from the studio?
Not really. It’s not like the old days when the first thing we did was to pop a beer just after setting foot in the studio. 😉
You’ll be coming to the UK in May for Incineration Festival. What can fans expect from the shows?
For those of you who have seen us before, you can expect a band that is hungrier than ever and we’re in the best shape we’ve ever been! Feedback from the shows we have already done is that we now are truly elite and it’s time to bring this message across Europe and UK!!
Are there any bands you’ll be hoping to check out at the festival?
Melechesh! Listening to their new album now! Great stuff!
What are you most looking forward to about coming back to the UK?
The Captain Morgan at the Underworld! Haha. God damn, it made us miss our flights the last time we were there!! Cost us more than 1000 pounds to get home!
What would you say the best show you’ve ever played has been?
Impossible to say, but memorable shows have been Mexico City and maybe the release party for Reptilian on Rockefeller in Oslo. The Underworld is always great! Great crowd there and we have some friends to help us with that Captain Morgan! Hehe.
And perhaps the strangest or weirdest?
Too many to mention!
And to close – what do you hope to achieve in 2015?
We are brining Keep Of Kalessin up another notch. We have a strong album out and we need to get this out to the metal world. We’re also planning a lot of activities in the autumn that will be really cool.