– Hello and, first of all, thank you so much for answering to our questions. How is everything doing right now with MORAST, being about to release your debut album?
MORAST: Yes, that record was a lot of work, so we will be glad when it finally will be out.
– You formed in 2015. How did the idea of forming a band like MORAST arise? Did you have a clear vision of what you wanted to achieve and sound with it?
MORAST: F., our vocalist, and me were talking about doing a project for some time before we started the band and had a rough vision of what sound and atmosphere we wanted to achieve. Our focus was to built something dark and heavy. When we became a real band everything evolved to our actual sound.
– It seems like everything happened really fast, since your debut 4 song demo came just two months after having formed. What are now your feelings on this debut demo? It was really well received into the underground. Did it open many doors for the band? Since after releasing it you played some shows.
MORAST: Everything happened really fast, you’re right. When you look back you can say there were things we would have done differently now, maybe with a bit more patience. But on the other hand we were quite creative right from the start and had a raw and unpolished energy at that time that we all still like.
– Then in 2016 you covered BATHORY for a digital compilation tribute. How did all this happen and what did it mean to you? BATHORY was a huge influence for almost every Metal band.
MORAST: Sean from CvltNation asked us if we were interested to participate in a series of cover albums called ‘Cvlt Nation Sessions’. When we played a show with ULTHA we talked about releasing our songs for that comp on vinyl since CvltNation only released it digitally. I’m not a big fan of cover songs but it was still cool to cover an outstanding band like BATHORY in our very own way.
– And now you are releasing your debut full-length, «Ancestral Void». How are you feeling about it?
MORAST: I’m a bit ambivalent about it. As I said it was a lot of hard work for us and before we started to record, our drummer L. had a discopathy so we had to postpone everything for some weeks. He tried really hard to record as soon as possible since we had a tight schedule for the record. All the bad circumstances aside we are pretty satisfied with everything else. The recordings, the artwork and all the support we get from our labels.
– Could you say you are here closer to your own musical identity? I guess creating music it’s kind like a self-awareness process.
Morast: We are closer to it but not at the end of our path. And yes, you can describe it as a self-awareness process.
– You are often tagged as a blackened Death/Doom band, but I think you escape from any possible label. Do you think this tag falls short for MORAST? I guess your idea isn’t to play a specifical genre, but if there’s something that characterizes your music is that feeling of darkness and desolation.
MORAST: That’s true. It was never our intention to fall into one category. We embrace it all and try to create something of our own out of it. Darkness and desolation are a hugh part of it.
– In fact the whole atmosphere plays a really big role on the album. What purpose does it serve?
MORAST: First and foremost it serves a kind of cathartic purpose for us as artists. It’s like a cleansing and escape from all the dismal shit that surrounds us. A reflection of our outlook on the specific black aspects of life.
– You have an own sound and, though you are not experimenting, it seems you are musically broad-minded and rather than sounding old school or whatever, you are doing something creative first and foremost. Something that is just your own and «free». Am I wrong? What border you would never cross?
MORAST: You are right. We try to create a sound that is ours but use certain elements from different sub-genres that influence us. That doesn’t imply we don’t worship the old school or have highbrow ‘artistic aspirations’. It’s just the way we do our thing. Btw, there are definitely borders I would not cross, man, haha.
– In fact this definition, of creativity and creative freedom, I think are always inherent to art. Is this what your music is for you? And what else is your music and MORAST is for you? Maybe an outlet?
MORAST: It’s definitely an outlet. Creative freedom is very important here, too. Music is the way I can be creative and handle the emotions that accompany me. Usually those emotions are quite gloomy and pessimistic. If I would be an optimist, I would possibly play music that sounds more positive than MORAST does.
– Moreover you seem to draw from different styles, creating something really diverse. Due to this I would like to know how did you work on the songwriting, if maybe being a team effort, where everyones puts its own touch, can help obtaining this varied result.
MORAST: Usually I come up with some riffs and slight presets for the composition. We work on it together and everyone throws in his ideas and puts in his own touch. That definitely helps to obtain the varied result.
– In fact it feels like you build one big picture with everything your creation involved; as both the title as the cover artwork reflect the content on this opus. Is it important to create a sense of wholeness with every element of your work?
– Digging into the aforementioned elements, what does the title of the album refer to?
MORAST: It’s up to your own interpretation.
– And what does the artwork represent? Who was the artist and how did you work on it?
MORAST: The painting is called ‘Creation of Light’ and was done by John Martin. It represents the atmosphere of the record in a very pertinent way.
– On the other hand, lyrics deal with anger, sadness, death… What does inspire them? Are they based on events unconnected to you or they also talk about personal experiences? They cover themes that could be choosen by simply aesthetic since it fits your sound and essence, but you give them that passion and emotion that they really seem like personal lyrics you really feel when singing.
MORAST: Most of our lyrics are based on personal experiences. Loss, disenchantment, desolation etc… Sometimes nature plays a part of the lyrical themes, too.
– Doom, Black and Death Metal are an important part of your musical identity, but I have also found elements of Thrash, certain SABBATH-like parts or even some Heavy Metal elements. Due to this, would you please tell us what have been some of the most influential acts for MORAST?
MORAST: Winter, Darkthrone, Triptykon, Black Sabbath, Killing Joke, Neurosis, Bathory, Fields Of The Nephilim and lots more.
– With such diversity, to what extent is easy to create something cohesive and that makes sense? Instead of something blurry, with such an amalgamation you manage to create something that can be just defined as MORAST.
MORAST: It’s easy and difficult at the same time.
– This album is coming out via Totenmusik «allied» with Ván Records. How did this cooperation arise? Totenmusik is a quite a small label.
MORAST: Toni from Totenmusik is a really good friend and supported us right from the start. He works together with Van Records on this. Since Van Records is having a really good distribution we are very glad to have them on board.
– All this about «Ancestral Void» being said; how could you describe it in just 3 words?
MORAST: Dark, heavy, pessimistic.
– And finally, what are now your near-future plans?
MORAST: Hopefully there will be a Split 7» with our brothers from VIDARGÄNGR this year. Besides that we will work on new songs and play some shows.
– That’s all from our side, thank you once more for answering to our interview. If you now want to add some final words; feel free to do it.
MORAST: Thanx for the worthwhile interview! Cheers!