COVEN 13 (Eng.)
1- Hello, thanks for answering to our questions. What are you guys currently up to?
Thank you. Well, not too much. We just released our first album in 25 years entitled “Destiny of the Gods” on Shadow Kingdom Records. We are very excited about that. Actually, we have been up to quite a lot in the past year. Not only with the new cd, but we re-mastered and re-released our first album,“Worship New Gods” on disc on SKR and pressed some limited edition copies on vinyl on High Roller Records. We also finally made it overseas to Europe and played at the Hammer of Doom 7 Festival in Germany, which was fantastic.
2- First off, could you make some history of the band?
Uggghhh… ok, where do you want us to start? Well, Coven 13 formed way back in late 1985 as Coven from Detroit, MI. The band was formed by Roger Cyrkeil (bass), with Todd Kreda (guitar), David Landrum (vox) and Brian McGuckin (drums). Released “Worship New Gods” (vinyl) on Crom Records in 1987. Disbanded in 1992. Reunited in 2005 for several shows in Detroit. Officially reunited in 2010 with the addition of Richie Karasinski in 2011. Re-released WNG’s (disc) on Shadow Kingdom Records in 2012 and limited edition vinyl on High Roller Records in 2013. Released “Destiny of the Gods”(disc) on Shadow Kingdom Records in 2013.
3- How could you describe your sound?
We would actually like to have our listeners answer that question for us. I don’t think that we set ourselves out on a specific mission to sound like “someone else” so to speak. We all have our own specific influences that we bring to the table when it comes to songwriting and it all seems to somehow mesh together. We do seem to tend to have a dark theme to our sound I guess. I would have to say that our new album has a more Heavy Metal sound to it than “Worship New Gods”. When WNG’s was written back in 1987, it really wasn’t intended to be a “Metal” album. It just came out that way when we were done with it, which also had sort of a Gothic sound to it. As most of our fans know, today we are now a 5 piece group. With the addition of Richie, we now have a much heavier sound to our songs. He most defiantly adds more punch to our sound and he is a great lead guitarist. We are happy to have him in the band.
4- What are the band’s main musical influences?
Well we have only 3… Black Sabbath, Black Sabbath and Black Sabbath.
5- How is the feedback for your new album being?
So far, the reception has been great. It is too hard to tell at this point, primarily because it has just recently been released.
6- And are you personally satisfied with the final outcome?
Certainly, of course. I mean after the fact, once everything has been recorded and mixed, as an artist you always reflect on what you think you could have done better. Or, you wish that we could have done this or that in a different way. Things went a lot different with this record compared to when we recorded WNG’s. Outside the fact that we are now a 5 piece band, we experimented with some keyboards with a gentleman named Mike McCabe, who has been a longtime friend of ours. We asked him to come in and lay down some keys for “Witches Kiss”. He had about 2 days to arrange his parts and when he came down to the studio, he just killed it! By the end of the day he did 2 more tracks for us. So it was sort of a new experience for us since WNG’s. But to answer the question… yes, I am personally satisfied with the final outcome of the record. Some things were rushed, but hey… it’s Rock N Roll. You grab the bull by the horns, you do the best that you can and you move forward.
7- How could you describe this opus in just 3 words?
Music For Valhalla
8- How has the production process for your new release been?
Well, we recorded “Destiny of the Gods” last year at Metro 37 Studios here in Rochester Hills, MI. The process was quite a bit different than how we did things with WNG’s back in 1987. In those days, we used 16 & 24 track reels. Today, everything is very convenient with hard drives and Pro Tools. We didn’t use Pro Tools, we used some other type of editing software and it really does make recording much simpler for a bunch of old guys like us. But as far as the process went… it went over just like any typical recording of an album. At first you’re like really excited to make an album and you’re pumped to go in and do it. Then you’re like, ok this is a lot of work but let’s get it done. Finally, it’s like“Groundhogs Day”. Every day is the same day and you just want to get the friggin’ album done already! But I was real happy with the sound and mix on my drums. A good friend of mine, Tim Boettcher, came in and tuned my drums perfectly. It really shows on the recording. He did a superb job! I don’t believe in using triggers for recording. Nothing beats a live drum sound!
9- And how do you use to work on the songwriting?
David (Ragnar), writes all of Coven 13’s lyrics. The lyrics mainly have Norse or Nordic themes to them. Some deal with Conan stories, the occult, vampires or the J.R.R Tolkien trilogy. Musically, it is a group effort. Most likely, someone will bring some riffs to the table and then we will all work together and arrange it accordingly.
10 – Finally, what are you near-future plans?
Massive world tour… studio… major motion picture… rehab…breakup… solo projects… reunion. No no no, none of that! Sounds like fun though. No seriously, at this point we are just 5 Metal heads just having fun with all of this. We would like to do some touring to support the new album. We have “Days of the Doomed” Fest lined up for next year and we would really like to get back overseas to do some European dates. Right now our main focus is writing new material for another Coven 13 album.
In Doom, Brian McGuckin