– Hi, thanks for your time. What are you currently up to? How is everything doing right now with KAMPFAR?

Thanx! Right now its a hell of a lot work here in the kampfar camp, interviews,pre-productions before our European tour and festival season, + a lot all this business as usual stuff that follows after a release of a new album, But all is very good though, And we are so looking forward to go out there in the battlefield again and do some live shows again.

– You have just released your new album, entitled «Djevelmakt». What are your expectations on it? And how is its feedback being thus far?

This album is for sure following in the same footsteps as our previous album “Mare”. And if Mare was more accessible than before in Kampfar music history , then This album is that too. But our goal has never been to be more accessible. It has been more about finding the ultimate oldschool sound but with a modern twist that suits Kampfar. Musically its much more challenging than before I would say. I had huge goals for this album. For the first time in years “I was sweating like a hooker in church» when entering that recording room. I pushed my limits as far as I could at that point, We all did! Thats all I can say. If we succeeded or not its not up to me to decide. But at least its different than before in many ways. Again just another step further in the same footsteps as“Mare” started to walk in 2010. The feedback? Well I have never in kampfars history got such a good feedback as we have done for this album. Pure simple amazing and such a revival really. Even if we as a band were more sure about the outcome of this album than ever before. But its always nice to get great feedback.


– Digging deeper into this album; what are some of the main themes on it?

Its infernal..O`yes indeed! The new album is anti religion , but not anti human,its direct and its all condemned!But at the same time its much wider than just religion too , in our society today you need to follow and obey «its laws» and damn if you dont! All religions condemn you to an infernal place ( Gehenna , Hell you name it) if you dont apply to their laws. All these places are constructed normally out of places that exist or existed here on eart during mankinds time here. Its still so very delightful or maybe you can say scary to see such impact these places still have on Us people even today. It`s scary… Where is the free man , where is the free strong self thinking individual that thinks and choose its own paths in life. Regardless to what others condemn you to? Damn if you do and damn if you dont! Fuck it!! We all heads towards the darkness no matter what we do, If we listen to them who speaks about salvation. This goes both for the “light” side of religion and for the “dark” side of it and society in genneral. This album is about that: Its about what these idiots tells you to do and about the condemnation if you dont! Light and darkness and the human in between. Raise the banner and be your own strong King or Queen is more or less the message comming trough on “Djevelmakt”!


– And what did you want to depict with the cover artwork?

It`s a blast first of all! True sence of art! Period! But maybe even more important ,Its also so close connected to The lyrical condemnation on “Djevelmakt” and the essence of the lyrics and music. Its just perfect! Nothing more to say really. We knew emmediatly when we saw this art that this is it.. this is the paintings for 2014. Some lyrics and songs of the album is even written as a direct ispiration due to these paintings… so its just perfect. I can not say it any clearer than that really. Financially we will manige. But it will always cost some money to invest in good art if I may say so..


– This is a really diverse opus, with doom-laden tracks such as «Swarm Norvegicus», «Mylder» or the eerie «Fortapelse». Was this versatility something you were aiming for?

Thanx. Yes it was supposed to be versatility. Hmm but how can I answer this question really? Well I can not do it in a good way, its impossible. Cause the main focus here for me has been the whole album. We had a hard focus on that every song had to fit into the same approach for this whole albums content and all the songs are even written for the line – song 1 to song 8 for a reson and it all fits I would say. The song that maybe describes Kampfar anno 2014 in the best way I guess must be the song «Mylder» (The opening track) but that is in a way a very innovative song too though.But then again its not the Most innovative. It is probably the song «Swarm Norvegicus» that holds that role. At least thats the song I was most nervous about to publish, cause it sticks out in a way in Kampfars history. mSo yes to make it short it is a versatility here but still all a complete album that follows the same line or theme at least from start til end.


– You also mix a really rough and aggressive musical basis with interesting melodies, as we can find in «De Dødes Fane». How easy and important for KAMPFAR is to get such a good equilibrium?

I can follow and you are probably right here.But its like I said erlier: Our goal has never been to be more accessible musical wise. It has been more about finding the ultimate oldschool sound but with a modern twist that suits Kampfar.So yes with that I mean that we want to be modern, but Kampfar belongs to the old-school side of Norwegian Black metal have no doubts. But of course I think from the very early start with Kampfar. Goals were not about selling a lot of albums or surfing on the black metal church burning wave if I may put it that way. If that was the case I would have easily done satanic black metal with corpsepaint and all that shit. In fact that would have been the easy way out. But Kampfar have always been about honesty.In the very beginning I was labelling kampfars music as «Norse Pagan Folklore Metal» due to that the content was not about the satanic cliches and our music could not be compeared to typical black metal at those days.So you see there was never a goal to surf on the Norwegian black metal wave back then. But as anything else things gets destroyed when a tons of others seems to follow with the term «Pagan».So When the so called pagan style became bigger with all this «Hey Ho» bands the term «Norse Pagan Folklore Metal» became equal to all these «Hey Ho» Pagan bands and people began to talk about Kampfar in the same terms. Well that was never been my intention to play this sort of metal. So to conclude this question I think the most correct way to answer this is that I still have the same goal with Kampfar as back in 94. And that goal is to be able to look at my self in the mirror every morning knowing that I do this with honesty and self pride and without regret anything or taking the easy way out of it.Both musically and personally really,It can not be done any other way!… And even more important. We are musicians and we need to develope as creators and musicians too. Otherwise we would have stopped doing this many many years ago! So all in all I guess the last sentence here is your really true answer on this question.


– In fact your sound evolves from one album to another, but this new record follows a bit the steps of your previous «Mare». Anyway, how do you think has the sound evolved since «Mare» came out?

This album is for sure following in the same footsteps as our previous album “Mare”, You are correct there. With Mare we started something and we now do the walk further down this line if I may so. First of all I would say that we have a new guitar player now so the outcome of the sound have naturally evolved due the fact of just that fact. «Ole» came in as a fresh storm so to speak. We really needed that in the band and it have in fact made all of us even more sharp than before. Ole came in to the band right after the Mare recording was done in 2011. Due to the fact that we know a lot people in this scene we handpicked a few guitar players for a “showcase” more or less to fill in for. Thomas after he left the band in 2010. I personally did`nt have any high exeptations to be honest. Cause I had been creating Kampfars music for almoust 17 years together with Thomas. So I did almost not see any future for the band back then. It was total darkness. But Ole came in for the first Showcase… played 10 kampfar songs. He played it better than the rest of us when we rehearsed together hehe. The only thing I remember was a big smile on Ask`s(Drummer) face. We looked at eachother and knew emmediatly that He`s( Ole) the one. It was really as simple as that. The rest is history. So the change in compositions have also turned out for the better. Due to Ole have his own studio in Bergen. And he is really a creative soul.. So just guess what that has to do with the case. Its a total new world for Us! All for the better! And you can for sure hear and feel His touch on this album. The song structures in genneral is so much more complex now. And Ole is the main force behind this I would say.


– All this about «Djevelmakt» being said; how could you describe it in just 3 words?

Hell? Heaven? (or) Betrayal?


– This has been your first release with Indie Recordings after working with Napalm Records. How is this cooperation working so far?

Moving back to Norway with Kampfar so to speak has been a blessing for Us.Its about control belive it or not. We were happy about Napalm Records too and there is no bad blood between Us and them. But We wanted more personal control over our own art. And thats what we got with Indie Recordings. Its of course very easy to explain that its also so much better to have the head-office of the record label just one hour away from my house than have it in Austria of course.And we are very pleased to be back in Norway again of course. After 20 years its about time if you ask me.Then to the obvious question I guess, How can it possible be about more personal control over our own art when releasing the entire album for free on the internet and youtube? Well I can tell you why… With Napalm we got nothing like this , we sold a quite ok amount of albums there, but thats that. With Indie Recordings now we have done all the work together and every single detail is a detail agreed upon from both Us and them. We wanted to pay the respect to the listeners and fans of Kampfar. Thats why we spent a lot of money on the artwork, double red vinyl version,digi cd version w free patch ,Cd with T-shirt and so on. We released the entire album for free for people to check out if they wanted to ( The list is so long) Its just a deeper respect to the people and fans that have supported Us during all these years and still do so. The album is in fact still out there on the internet. All planned and nothing banned from record label or band at all. So what happens now after its out there for free? Well I can tell you what happens… we get the same amount of respect back from fans and our «Horde» its a mutual thing and its fucking important for us pay this respect to the loyal ones. After one week since release,The digi cd is now soon to be sold out already, The first pressing of the vinyl too. Not long now before They have to press up the 2`nd pressing I guess. The album in genneral are starting to hit all kinds of charts here in Norway now, we sell more physicall albums than the last 10 years in fact. Pay respect and you will get it back! Its so fucking brilliant to have a record label now that feels exactly the same! Thats the control I am talking about and thats what we got now with Indie!


– This 2014 you are celebrating your 20th anniversary as a band. Looking back, what has been both the best and the worst moments of these years of career? Do you have any regrets?

The most remarkable moment in Kampfar history must be as simple as finally deciding to complete Kampfar with full time members after many years as a two -piece band.Playing live for the first time was something remarkable and a personal highlight for me. It felt like starting all over again. My biggest mistake as a bandleader? Hmm well thats hard. But I have defenitely lost tons of money by not reading the contracts good enough in the early years. Just know that the debut album was given for free from Malicious to «Metal Blade or Centry media» If I remember correctly. But that doesnt really matter. But the album have in total since the Malicious times sold something like 50 000 copies in total and the only thing I have ever recieved from that is a box with some copies «for free» 😉 of the album in the mail. So that is at least something I have learned the hard way when it comes legal rights and so on. But do I have any regrets other than that? Hmm not really We are still here and thats what matters really.


– And what’s left for you still to get with KAMPFAR?

Personal evolvement , thats what really matters to me. And personal awereness. A lot of my old friends are now dead due to drugs or other shit.. I am pretty sure the road was splitted in 2 ways some decade ago for me and I chose to walk the path with Kampfar. Thats why there is not strange for me to still be here with Kampfar. (Even though I had some dark spots during the road walk with kampfar during all these years)I have not thought so much more about my achieved goals and not achieved goals to be honest. Kampfar is my life its that simple and its just a bonus to meet people that adore and find things very meaningfull in life due to what I/We do in kampfar.


– Finally, what are your near-future plans? How does 2014 look like for the band?

We have never in Kampfar`s history got so full packed plan for live shows at this early stage of the year.. So I guess 2014 will be an active one for Us. It all starts in March with the beggining of our European tour…. So lets see where 2014 ends. I dont know that yet, but its more offers for going live now than ever before so I take that as a good sign.


– That’s all, thank you once more for answering our questions. If you want to add some final words; feel free to do it.

Please have some patience with Us. Spain is not on this European tour plans this spring, but who knows what happens later on..?!


Sergio Fernández


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