GRAUPEL (Eng.)

– Hello Zingultus, thank you for answering to this interview. First of all, what are you and GRAUPEL currently up to?
Hola Tania! First of all, I’d like to thank you for the interest! Well, what are we currently up to? Everything seems to be fine and we are looking forward to the release of our second full length album. Normally we are not that curious about the response we get after releasing something, as all is just a subject mind. But this time we are that much convinced of the material. We are very proud about it… so have a look forward.

– You’re not too known in our country yet, so I would like you to start with some history of the band: how did you get together, etc.
My “ favourite” question…but here we go:
Graupel was formed as a 3-piece group back in 1995. At this time it should be a project, as all members were fully employed with other bands like German NAGELFAR and DESECRATION. The idea behind this new project was to keep the old spirits of the early 90´s Black Metal.
But due to lack of time, we got never active with this formation. But in 1997 I, Zingultus, decided to put more attention to the band, so I had to reform it. The search for other musicians with the same intension was quite difficult and I had some problems with a static line-up, until I found Gnarl, Ratatyske and Greuel as the ideal partner.
Greuel left the Band while writing our debut album, because he was forced to have more attention on his studies and Hiemos filled the vacant position on bass in 2007.In between Gnarl did all strings, which was no problem, as we didn’t want to play live back those days.

– And what does “Graupel” mean?
There is no translation for Graupel, as Graupel is the same word in English. It’s a meteorological word. Hailstone comes close to the description. I thought, that the meaning of “Graupel” expresses what our music is like: a rough and frosty storm that is able to do plenty of damage. The articulation of “Graupel” fits it as well, I think.

– You have just released your 2nd full length album, 5 years after your debut; what did it take you all these years?
It has got so many reasons… mainly, we were not able to work continuously on the album, as we don’t live that close anymore. Gnarl had to move for example, because of his job and found a girl about 200 km away from our home base in Aachen. Sometimes we were lazy, not in the mood, to do something with the band. And that’s a very important thing for us. We just want to express emotions, if they come. We can’t force that! So mainly human facts. Beside that, we thought,  the songs were not mature before we recorded it a year ago. We had no pressure to release it, so we took all the time until we were absolutely satisfied with the album. A mistake, we did with the debut one. Suddenly there was a time, when we were all fed up with the songs of “Auf alten Wegen…” and we just wanted to release them, to get it finished. Worst case to do, as we are very unhappy with it nowadays.

– If I’m not wrong it has been some delay with the date release; what happened?
We were just too optimistic with the progress of work on the album. This led us to announce it in previous. But things went wrong and we needed a break to clean our minds up and refill our accumulators to have enough power to work on the album further on. But desires came back…but sadly not for all. Ratatyske left the band during this process. He

– I read at your MySpace that was not due to moving from one label to another but, anyway, how did you get in touch with Ván Records? Do you feel like is the right label for GRAUPEL?
Yes, sure… otherwise we wouldn’t have changed. But Cold Dimensions was also the right label. But there were some thoughts of changes, which weren’t compatible with us, as we need personal references to a label, which we thought of getting lost in Cold Dimensions. Afterwards those things didn’t change there, but we were already at one with Ván Records. So the change happened anyway.
Sveinn is one of my closest comrades in life since the early 90´s. We formed the Aachener Black Metal brotherhood “Wod Ván “ in 1995 and we shared the paths for a long time now. He was always interested in signing Graupel and just waited for the next moment to get us. No doubts about it in our case, too. But we were happily bonded to Cold Dimensions, as they started before Ván. So no thought about a change before that, as there was no need for the band to change.

– The album will be out on Christmas day, what did you choose that concrete day? Was that something intended?
No, it was just a good date at the end of December. Ván Records suggested it and we didn’t care. Its gonna be a Heavy Christmas! Some will be really disappointed about this answer, I guess…well of course we would like to desecrate the holy night with our pungent of doom and filth! Let it burn! Burn! BURN!!!!  Hahahaha… fuck…what a cliché! Lets get on…

– Your debut album was recorded at your rehearsal room but I haven’t had the chance of reading anything about it this time. How has been the production and recording process like? Did you do everything on your own?
Yes… the same procedure as the last time. But we invested in new recording material and took all the time, it needed to satisfy each members. Gnarl is the main technical rider of the band and he did a good job in the end. But the new material is not responsible for the better sound. It was our need.

– All your lyrics so far are in German, I guess this is something natural as comfortable to you but, have you ever thought of singing in English? It seems English can open more doors to any band.
I will never write English lyrics for Graupel! These lyrics are my inner thoughts and as my mother tongue is German, I can’t express them better like this. My thoughts are German, so the lyrics are.  I don’t care about opening doors for any reason, which limits me in my personal needs and thoughts. There will be translations in the booklet of the album, which was very hard for me to agree with, as I was not sure about the translations to depict my really inner self. So I tried to translate them, and it finally worked. But I dislike to let someone else to translate them. None’s got the right to play with my thoughts! I am a hardliner concerning this. Others have no problem with it. But I respect every art and handlings with it. But this one is mine! Well, at last, I appreciate to let the world know about it.

– Due to this some people maybe won’t know what your songs are about. Could you please talk us a bit about your lyrics and your main subjects?
The lyrics are very abstract an ensnared, but all a story for itself. Mostly is fictional, in additional to personal needs and disasters with a huge importance.
In my opinion bands that write lyrics as a simple addition to the music without giving them any importance means, that the musician is not serious with his work. The whole thing should have a concept until it’s got the right to be called “art”. Otherwise they should make instrumentals.
And I never take the viewers choice to get an own interpretation. Ok, for people without German cognitions, it was quite hard in the past. But as I said, we have changed that. So, please make your own mind! I don’t want t
o express myself, but I like the people to read and find themselves within it!

– As I said, “Am Pranger…” will be out next December, but I bet you have also heard some feedback. How has been so far?
Close friends heard it and they declared the album as good. Don’t like this question.

– What are your plans to promote the album? Is any tour on the way?
Well… there will be the usual promotion like interviews a.s.o. No tour is planned. I can’t imagine going on tour with Graupel. It has got personal issues within the band. I really like those guys and we are friends… but not more than maybe a day in a row. On tour you have to live that close on each other, which I can’t imagine. Single gigs will be played for sure, as soon, as we have a full line-up again.

– I found this album (as the previous one) had quite melody still being really raw. How important is this blend between “melodic” and “raw” for you?
It’s not a forced blend… it just flows while writing the music. It’s the way we like  it, so we play it.

– As I said, I also noticed this mix in your previous “Auf alten Wegen…”, but what could you say differences these two works?
The main difference is, that we took all the time it needed, to finish the composing and the rehearsals until we were able to play them as best as we can. But the songs have even more details now and with the more less raw sound, you can here them! And maybe the structures have changed a bit, as the songs have more different and variable parts. We are open minded, as long as it fits the Graupel grade, we think of. Also the vocals are more derivative, which is also fitted by the new sound.

– And how important are those cold atmospheres? I believe is something that stands out in your music with huge presence, or let’s say they’re a highlight.
Thank you for this compliment! Yes, it is very important for us. It’s not a cold atmosphere in special, but its atmosphere as itself. A thing I miss a lot in nowadays Black Metal. And if you sense it as cold, it seems to be perfect and fits with our views, how Graupel should arrange feelings! Great!

– What are your main influences? Not necessarily bands; anything that inspires you to compose or writing lyrics.
As I told before all  in Graupel consists of personal needs! It’s the way we have to explain our thoughts, needs and will. The best weapon to stay alive, as each song is an outlet. Maybe without this band we would be all dead or in jail because of raging violence and murder. These feelings make it so harsh and the best expression.

– Music-wise, I think your album could have been out perfectly during early 90’s…
Another great compliment! Graupels aesthetic goal is to keep the old spirit alive. We don’t want to reinvent Black Metal. But its values were stomped with feet within the years. But this flame has to keep burning and that’s what Graupel is about. Graupel is tradition, principles in the vein of a nostalgic spirit called pure fucking Black Metal!

– It seems Black Metal is now growing in different countries, especially in Scandinavia (though Scandinavia was always been an important place for extreme Metal), France, Germany and the US; do you have any favourite scene?
No, I don’t care about scenes anymore. Black Metal in common is getting more and more boring, I think.  There are only a few bands, which keep me interested, as they know, how to keep their music exciting and heavy. Music should touch me and doesn’t have a need for a  special chop. Bands like Cobalt (US), Secrets of the Moon (Ger) or Primordial (IRL) for example. Beside that, those bands are honest! If you get known to so many Black Metal evil wannabes… you get sick! True Black Metal? Forget it… there are so many fakes. I mean… we are not that way to. We are not evil or something. We have principles and each member an individual philosophy…for sure… but we don’t want to be feared or be claimed for any hocus-pocus. We scratch our balls in the morning like any man does…. But we are individual. That’s the main thing.

– Now that you’re the new ENDSTILLE’s singer, will GRAUPEL be an established band or will we have to wait years to hear your next full-length album?
No, Graupel will be an established band further on, I hope. But the problems in the last years make it surrealistic to say, we will release in a much smaller period our next album. Time will see.

– And now that I have asked you about ENDSTILLE, how’s the work for the next album going? Can you anticipate us anything about the upcoming record?
The work is almost done. I will record the last vocals in December. It will sound a lot different, as the variable vocals show another face of Endstille. Even the music is more variable. Not this stupid blast-only-attacks anymore. Endstille has got a new profundity! Some nice surprises for the Endstille fans. Some will flee… but other will take the band more serious. It’s a new era…and we fear no front.

– And finally, what are your near-future plans?
We have to find a new drummer, as Ratatyske left the band after the recording. It’s a hard fact, we have to digest first. It wont be that easy to replace him. Maybe it will never work again. All is open…

– That’s all Zingultus; thank you once more for your time and my best wishes. If you want to add any last words to the interview: take these last lines
I have to thank you again. It was a nice interview. Not this total standard thing. You were well primed, which shows, you care about more than just  the music. That’s the way I like it, as it shows the respect for each other! I am not used to it. Good work!
To all Metal Maniacs in Spain: Don’t become narrow-minded and keep the flame burning as you take care of your kids and the metal procreation! Be honest first… evil comes last!
Regards!
Zingultus

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2 comentarios to “GRAUPEL (Eng.)”

  1. Teitan dice:

    This guy is TRUE! I mean that! Great philosophy and total honest!

  2. Tania dice:

    You’re right Teitan, glad to see there are musicians into Black Metal that don’t try to just give a totally stupid and evil image.

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