Interview with black death metalovou band MALLEPHYR.
- translated by Markéta, thank you!
- translated by Markéta, thank you!
Ave MALLEPHYR! Your last year´s album “Assailing the Holy” has been released a while ago. There are the first review and you play those songs live. I haven´t read or heard any negative review. (Or is there any? If so, what does it say?) How do you feel about the record after a while?
Hello Deadly Storm. I have not noticed any negative responses but as I have said before not many people directly share their negative opinions with interprets. There are of course some negative responses and that is how it is supposed to be. But so far all the reviews were surprisingly positive.
Now, I can´t imagine to record the album differently. It was created in a certain mood and at that time it was natural result. There will be a lot of changes on the next project, however “Assailing the Holy” is the result of the former sentiment.
You were born from the underground and you succeeded in something amazing which is not ordinary in the Czech Republic. People know you and your brand has been honestly built up. Although your band is in its beginnings and there will be a lot of hard work, you are noticeable. There are bands which are known only after 10 years of playing or never. Do you have any advice for beginners?
Well, you are not asking the right guy. Firstly, we are beginners because we have been playing live for 2 and a half years. Secondly, I cannot really understand how MALLEPHYR made it so far. I don´t think there is something like an instruction what to do when you want to be successful. You have to focus on something more than just an immediate success but rather your own vision which you want to go. And you as a band need to follow this vision even if you do not have a lot of listeners. That was my philosophy when I went for MALLEPHYR: to compose and play what I need to get out of myself, do it properly, in my own way and constantly work on myself. The reactions were so unexpected and I think I appreciate it even more thanks to the moment of surprise.
You decided to go with Mad Lion Records label which is very solid Polish publishing. You probably have the highest sells of CDs in the Czech Republic, however did the label help you to go with MALLEPHYR abroad? Do you have any statistics on how your CDs are doing? And what about digital format?
I am not sure about abroad but at least in Poland for sure. First of all, Przemek organize various events there and he also does promo for MALLEPHYR. Thanks to him we have played in Poland four times already. I have no idea how many albums have we sold already. We received some packages with CDs from Mad lion after the releasing and we only know how many of those have we sold. I hope that Przemek does not regret that he decided to work with unknown band and that from time to time there is someone who wants our CD:). We also have the digital version which is available right now. There was some delays but it should be OK now and available on some e-services (like Spotify). Unfortunately, “Assailing the Holy” will not be on Bandcamp.
I really appreciate one particular thing on your band. It does not matter for how many people you play, hundred or twenty, you always play hard and do a perfect performance. There were no bored faces, which you can find on some concerts, but you had the total commitment and energy. How often do you play in rehearsal room and do you think about how your shows should look like?
I am so glad you said that. For me, it does not matter for how many people you play you still have to do your best. Even when you have 5 fans on a concert, the exchange of energy can be great.
The visiting of rehearsal room is more irregular and it depends on how much concerts do we have or if we need to work on a song. It can be once in two weeks or in month, or even longer. When we play concerts more weeks in a row, there is no need to be in a rehearsal room.
Our shows are not shaped, just the basic things like the clothing we have on the stage. But we changed it a little bit because it looks like there is nothing else than a black hoodie in Pilsen´s shops:). But we don´t have any choreography because during the concert we would probably forget it because we are like in a trance.
Your music is somewhere between death and black metal. Listeners of both genres have often very strong preferences, they might be even orthodox, I would say. Who does the larger response for your band?
I think that the orthodoxy between black and death metal is not as strong as it used to be. At least I don´t really see it. Thus, I can´t really answer this question. I feel that we are a little bit closer to black metal but, as I said, I don´t have any overview about the music preferences of our fans. Sometimes, a person comes to us after a show and says: I don´t really listen to black metal or death metal” and yet he/she enjoyed the show. I believe that putting fans in those “shells” has now passed. And most importantly it does not really matter.
Your lyrics are directed against religion. That is quite tricky thing in today´s world. I wonder, how do you write your lyrics? Opat, where do you find topics inspiration for your lyrics?
I would slightly change it. There are only like two songs from “Assailing…” which are directly anti-religious and even those are more directed against human fanaticism and delusion than against religion as a whole (in general, nothing like this has a space in our music and not in response to the current political and religious situation). For “Assailing…” the main inspiration came from several books which I was reading at that time and also from the whole entity of the evil around us aka humankind. This topic will be more developed in the next album.
You play on concerts quite often and sometimes those trips are really long. I feel that our opinion will be the same – Nowadays, it is important to bring the music right in front of people´s faces to have the personal contact with fans. Yet, sometimes I wonder…hundreds of kilometres cost some money and then you play just for a few people. How do you manage to balance the band with school, work and playing in other bands? Opat and Sinneral are probably really busy in other bands, right?
It´s not just us bringing the music to them, it works in both ways. The fans go to see us in other cities. You are one of them:). Moreover, in comparison with other bands, we do not travel that much. So far we have travelled only 8 hours by car and that is it.
Sometimes it´s difficult to balance those things, that is true. So far we have not had many collisions. From time to time we can´t play on a concert for various reasons or we solved it differently. The concert activity of MALLEPHYR is increasing so it is possible that those problems will be more frequent but let´s not jinks it. We want to play as much as possible and we submit everything to it.
Speaking about concerts there is one thing I have realized. There are ladies, girls, and female on your concerts. I understand that – you smile a lot and you are young, nice and dark at the same time:). Once I have even heard about your fan club. Does it really exist? Just tell me how can a black/death metal band charm soft sex?
Hahahaha, you´ve made me laughed. Are you talking about a female fan club? I know nothing about this. Adam (guitarist) goes to the gym a lot so if there is something like a fan club, it must be because of him, or I don´t know:). In fact, I believe that ladies on concerts go to there because of the music. They can listen to this music, why not? Additionally, I don´t think that we have more ladies fans than other bands in this music genre. I believe that it is only about music…I doubt that ladies go to black or death metal concerts to see asses of sweaty maniacs on stage:).
I do not want to just compliment you all the time so I would like to ask a little less cordially. I prefer your songs which are dirtier, rougher and rusty. There is only one thing which I would criticize and that is the sound. For the music you play I think it would be much suitable to have more chaotic and frenetic production. I feel that the new album is on an imaginary “crossroads”. You go either the way of dirtiness or the way of clear and well-arranged sound. How is it now for MALLEPHYR? Which way do you want to go?
I am perfectly satisfied with the final production of this album. It is true that on “Assailing…” the way we went was more on the clearer sound. But for me that is the most suitable for those songs. I do not believe that those songs are too inaccessible and the sound goes hand in hand with it. So for me it is not a crossroad but it was something most suitable and natural at that moment (just as the whole album which I described at the beginning).
And because songs for the next album will be different from the debut album the production will be different also. And we will not follow the cleaner road…
Are you preparing any new material now? Do you compose, have a vision, when do you want to record and publish a new album?
We already have some material done for the next project and as I said before it will be quite different form the debut. Yet, MALLEPHYR will remain the black/death metal intentions. We also have an idea about the recording dates but so far we want to leave it open. There will be a lot of work and we have some experiences with constant delaying a release of an album so we do not want to set any deadlines.
Have you already set up any concerts and festivals for the spring and summer? I would like to have a survey so the fans can really enjoy your music.
We played a lot of concerts on February and we also went to Austria, Slovakia and we played two times in Poland. So after this there will be not that many things happening. We have a concert March 18th in Prague for the MetalGate brand before the Greek trio ROTTING CHRIST, ACHERONTAS and HAIL SPIRIT NOIR and also with the doom band SELF-HATRED from Pilsen. Two weeks after we will play in Tábor on a classic and very nice event Žižkův vraždící palcát. The next event is on April 22nd in Jičín, etc. And now about the festivals: we confirmed one very nice event which we have never played before on but that is all I can say right now. Unfortunately the summer is quite empty but we have some plans for autumn.
Thank you so much for the interview. I wish MALLEPHYR only sold out concerts, tons of sold CDs and merchandise and I am looking forward to see you on your concerts. And I also wish you luck in your personal life!
Thank you for your interesting questions and for the support since the beginning of our band. Good luck with your blog and everything. Thanks!