Regular readers will know that Eye Of Solitude are a personal favourite of mine; bringing an algamation of deathened funeral doom together that simply ticks all the right boxes for me as both a fan and a reviewer.
Recently I had the opportunity to review the band’s upcoming monolith, aptly titled ‘Cenotaph’ and graced it with a well-earned 5/5 score (found here: Eye Of Solitude – Cenotaph Review).
After this, the group graced me with the opportunity to send some questions over and Eye Of Solitude’s vocal front, Daniel promptly answered in-depth, grace and with occasional humour. Here’s a preview of the album due for release September 1st:
Eye of Solitude’s sound is massive but it has changed over the course of the last few years. There’s been a couple of line up changes, how has this affected the band touring and recording? What do the new faces of Eye Of Solitude bring to the table in the year 2016?
Thanks very much for the kind words Robert. Indeed the sound shifted a bit, however I would probably say that this sound is [more] mature now. This is where the band was heading and it only seemed and felt natural to sink deeper into funeral doom.We have indeed a new guitarist in the person of Stefan Gough (see black metal band Sidious);
He’s brought his experience as a guitarist and his own input on the new songs which made a huge difference, adding to the sound and literally completing the line-up.
‘Cenotaph’ is released independently, you’ve seen some success with (France based) Kaotoxin Records previously, why the decision to promote and sell without the backing of a label?
Kaotoxin have been nothing but help, a thing for which we are forever grateful. However as taboo as this subject may be, I’ll try to portray it as it is without curtains.
We just wanted to try and see what the outcome would be. Simple as that.
How does the new record compare with the likes of ‘Dear Insanity’ and ‘Canto III’?
Each album cannot be compared to another. It would be a big mistake to even think about it.
Canto III is dynamic, it’s energetic whilst Dear Insanity is pretty much to the level of refulation. They’re all together with Cenotaph singular entities and you either love or hate them.
What are the chances of seeing a single tracked, hour long composition (like Dear Insanity) as a full length in the future?
Dear Insanity was close to that (50 minutes) and I’m not sure I will experiment with that again.
How have you guys gone about promoting the new album without the backing of a label?
We’ve pretty much done what a label would do. Just doing the work ourselves. We’ve asked reviewers to get in touch and offered a press pack, word of mouth and a lot of time and energy spent on advertising. Luckily we have some really good friends who got in touch for album streaming or for video premiering and so on.
That’s pretty much it. A lot or work, blood sweat and tears.
The vocals are a huge talking point sonically, talk us through the methods both for the screams and cleans. What sort of strain/stress does this create after a recording or live show? How are those pipes maintained?
Many thanks for the kind words, but I never thought of myself as a vocalist, I am rather a drummer, that being my main instrument.Of course I wouldn’t be able to do it without proper training, exercise and a lot of warming up, keeping hydrated and trying to maintain a solid growl or a scream.Clean vocals are easier to achieve, as the stress on the vocal chords isn’t that big.
But through a lot of exercise , I pretty much manage to go through a show or two or a longer recording session. I always do my vocals in one take and don’t think about it much. Whatever comes out first that’s also the final result.
Describe ‘Cenotaph’ in concept and what it means to the guys who are Eye Of Solitude? A favourite track?
Cenotaph is a meaning of emptiness. By definition a cenotaph is an empty tomb…
We’ve always had a negative vision on the concepts of our albums where not much hope is gleaming through, thus it’s a peak of loneliness and solitude.
I’ve always given an introspective meaning to my lyrics and Cenotaph is not an exception.
Desolated landscapes, a constant feeling of anguish and inner pain, an introspective reflection on life itself. My favorite track as I’m sure the others’ too is “Loss”.
What’s next for the band?
A tour, a few shows, and a lot of special beers [hahaha].
As a usual favourite of mine I like to ask what are some of your favourite albums released this year (2016)? What should the metal community be listening to/what did we miss?
Shamefully I have missed a lot myself, this has been a really busy year for me but the two albums that had a huge impact on me were from Mourning Beloveth and Coldworld.
The Internet has become a controversial place for new music. How has the reception of your music (new and old) shaped how you write music? How does a modern day band bend the Internet in a positive manner come release day and how do you avoid or manage piracy?
Internet has nothing to do with “how” we write our music. We just write it. The Internet however is just a tool to get it out there. Nothing more. People just hit the keys on YouTube and you’ve got so much music to listen to for 10 lifetimes. It’s useful , I’m not disputing that but for an old schoolie like me.. I miss the passion of ordering a cassette via letter and waiting for 3 months to arrive… and the unimaginable joy when it finally did arrive.
Piracy. ..Well nowadays it’s impossible to prevent it. We just trust that our loyal fans will buy the physical copy of the CD and the merch. And we thank those who are supporting us this way. I myself am too a “try before you buy” kind of person but never agreed with piracy. It’s just low. Now when Bandcamp exists and provides a reasonable price for an album, it’s hard to understand pirated music. Yes, you have the money for Internet. Yes, you have the money for a computer or laptop and speakers but fuck you if you don’t have £5 for an album.