– Hello, thanks for taking your time, how are you holding up during this pandemic, almost dystopian era?
Corvus: Sleeping, working, making music, sleeping, working, doing music: the loop seems boring but it’s quite an excited time to go deeper into creation. I guess I’m ok!
Kirby: I took so much distance as I could from the situation ,during the lock down I went almost everyday to my record shop even if I couldn’t open it, so I took the bus from my house to the center of Brussels and did what I am doing in everyday life, it was weird in the streets of course but good for my spirit, also I used my time to create music and went a few time in studio not only for Wolvennest. I also did long walk in the forest, close to the nature.
-First off, how and why was WOLVENNEST born?
Kirby: Wolvennest is born in a night of the year 2013 with the 7 songs demo recorded on a 4-track tape recorder.
– And why did you choose this band name? Is it representative of what you feel the band is?
Kirby: the name represent totally what the band is, a collective of musicians sharing different forms of art as videos, films, photo, artwork etc…we are the Nest.
–You come from different artistic backgrounds. What does this add, or how is this reflected in your work with WOLVENNEST?
Corvus: We are music lovers and we all feel that, together, we create something that would be tasteless alone. It’s a combination of good souls who always look forward, not backward. No ego, no business vision, just the will to create something strong and melancholic.
Kirby: it brings a special alchemy to our live shows and on each albums. The fact we have different artistic backgrounds brings some extra ingredients to the all concept/process and open more artistic horizons.
-This said, what does inspire the band? Any specific, paintings, artists, movies…?
Corvus: The altruism and humanity in David Lynch work is something that inspires me a lot. I still got regular emanations of the bizarre season 3 of Twin Peaks in my mind and it’s something that clearly inspires at least half the band.
Kirby: air, trees, waters, animals, relationships feelings, love, sex, fear and death, «la Mort» which close every chapter of life. Francis Bacon and his tortured and de structured faces and bodies paintings.
– Your forthcoming “Temple” is your third record. A Trinity of albums. Does this have any meaning to you? Not only symbolically, but maybe experience-wise.
Corvus: The three artworks are connected, the overall vibe offers the same psychic emanations. It has not been done consciously, but it is indeed an unholy trinity. Three albums, one heart.
-And what is “Temple”? Is it a Symbol? An actual, figurative temple?
Kirby: of course each person can make his own interpretation. Myself I have seen the Temple in reality when I was in the desert of Morocco and I have seen it in some of my dreams. It can be a place made of stones as it can be a spiritual place.
-Could you comment something on the cover artwork? What does it represent, who was the artist… It holds a lot of symbols.
Corvus: we would destroy the aura of the artwork by explaining it. Feel free to have you own interpretation.
Kirby: Temple artwork is made by Meike Hakkaart/Art of Maquenda. For me, both of our universes come together through a ritual act.
–The cover for your previous “Void” was a work by Bobby Beausoleil. How did this happen? I discovered him some years ago through the music he did for Kenneth Anger.
Corvus: Shazzula has been in contact with Bobby Beausoleil for years, she even met him years ago. He kindy offered us an artwork when Shazzula told him we were not able to find the proper one. No need to say that we are honored. That artwork gave another dimension to Void, plain and simple!
-You don’t print your lyrics if I’m not wrong. What are the motifs you always go back to? The recurring themes.
Corvus: We don’t really hide it, you can clearly understand it by listening to the songs carefully.I guess the ones who really want the lyrics will spend more time discovering it, which makes the trip more interesting.
Kirby: it’s just a choice we made to not included the lyrics.
-You started recording “Temple” at the beginning of the pandemic. Did this whole situation affected the recordings in any way?
Corvus: Not really, we just adapt, whatever the scenario is. The situation is already difficult enough to make it more complicated. Music is freedom, freedom is music, and nothing can change that. We have two studios available almost anytime, which helps us a lot to create whenever we want. Still the orchestra plays!
Kirby: each of us was impacted by the pandemic situation in a different way and for the album what was supposed to be done in 1 or 2 months took us 6 more. But there is no inspiration of the situation in our music.
-You use a theremin in the band, pretty unusual in a Rock or Metal band. How did you come up with the idea and what does it bring to your sound?
Corvus: Shazzula firstly played Moog and synths live, but she felt that theremine could add another dimension to the music. She does what she wants and often improvises live with her theremine, which offers quite an unpredictable element to our live shows.
-KING DUDE’S TJ Cowgill collaborated with his vocals on “Succubus”. Tell us a little bit about it.
Corvus: we met him several times. He is talented and has a strong vision and identity . His voice is quite unique and I’m very happy he accepted to collaborate on Succubus. We knew he loved Wolvennest last time we met him, he apparently put the song “Unreal” in the sound system before shows he did 2 years ago. It became quite obvious we had to ask him for a collaboration. He got total freedom to do whatever he wants, as we always do with guests. Freedom is the key!
-As always, there are some Arabic hints on “Temple”. Where does this inspiration and interest come from?
Corvus: Ismail, who appears on each full length we did, is a close friend of the band. He played with Michel and me in Goatcloaks (the “pre” Wolvennest period) and always adds a fantastic vibe on Wolvennest albums. It’s just a natural process. Boundaries are something artificial, so we choose to not have any.
Kirby: personally I am listening to a lot of oriental music and on that point one of the most influence is Nass El Ghiwane a 70’s psychedelic rock using traditional instruments from Morocco, I was totally impressed by their music and who they brought their audience in a state of total trance.
-And once more songs on the album are almost trance-inducing. What tools or processes do you use to get to this trance-like state? Therefore was it necessary to be in a certain mood/mindset to perform and write these songs?
C: no drugs needed! Working on songs is hypnotic: you just get lost into it and has to come back and organize all of it to make the best song possible. We sometimes have 100 tracks on just one song, which means that you need to spend a lot of time on it after it’s recorded. Patience is the key here.
Kirby: we included hypnotic guitars loops to come to a maximum level of trance, and we feel directly which impact it will have. For example a song as «Out Of Darkness Deep» is based on 1 riff.
-So is the album kind of a ritual, or at least the way it was crafted and what you wanted to convey with it?
Corvus: Each song has a distinctive vibe in which you can get lost. It’s the swirling void, coming to live and disappearing. It’s more a feeling than a physical reaction. The energy we try to create is linked to something very ancient and pure. It’s not religious per se, but it’s a celebration of life through repetitive patterns, as a Mantra.
– All this brings to my mind an interview I read with Genesis P-Orridge some years ago where they stated «…And that the artist is the inheritor of a tradition of wise people—shaman, and priests, the ritual side of the social animal, there to expiate psychic and philosophical problems. That’s what art is meant to be about, is rescuing people from the fear of death and the fear of life, and that’s a very thin line», which I think resonates, if not with they with the way you approach your work, with that it conveys at least. What do you think? How much of that instinctive, primordial wisdom is there in art? How much of a journeying process is it?
Corvus: I quite agree, even if I’m not at all afraid of death. But music surely can have an almost “religious” vibe, and when it becomes your biggest reason to be alive, which is the case for the majority of musicians, you know that it’s something sacred that you have to respect and disrespect at the same level.
-All this about “Temple” being said; how would you describe it in just 3 words?
Corvus: Love, Life, Death.
Kirby: massive, melancholic and ritual.
-And finally, what’s next for WOLVENNEST in these uncertain times?
Corvus: We will follow the dark path to the light, whatever these uncertain times bring on the table. Even in chaos, you can find a meaning and a goal.
Kirby: I will refer to song «death is certain, life is not» from Dark Angel’s «Darkness descends» opus, one of my favorite album of metal.
– That’s all from our side, thanks again for your time. If you’d like to add some final words, feel free to do it.
Corvus: Empathy was, is and will be the key.
Kirby: follow your path