– Hello, thanks for taking the time. What’s the band currently up to?
We are currently in the process of creating new material for the next Setherial release. We are also working on set lists for future shows. We also have some unfinished recordings that we are looking through and will hopefully be completing some of those songs for release next year.
– First off; why did you come up with the name of «Setherial»? What does it mean?
Setherial is the name that was choosen to represent this band back when it was formed in 1993. It holds no meaning outside of this concept wich enables the pureness of it´s symbolic value to stay pure and untainted by other inputs and interpretations. It is the symbol of the philosophies that drives us as individuals and as a band.
– Though your latest «Ekpyrosis» was released over a year ago I would like to get a bit into it so, first of all, tell us a bit both about it’s title and the lyrical ideas, as well as the link between them both, as I think they are strongly connected.
The central concept of the album revolves around our interpretations of the concept of Ekpyrosis seen through a Satanic perspective. It deals with the unavoidable conflict of the universe through the destructive forces herein represented by Satan. It basicly deals with the uncreation, the end of all boundaries of matter and the final release of all energies into an everlasting void, the entry of something into nothing if you will.
– Honestly, I believe this album represents a clear progression for SETHERIAL (each album so far has meant a clear evolution and development though) but, was does it mean to you? Is an important thing for you to evolve and experiment with each album? Also as individuals and not just as musicians.
For us personal fullfillment and growth have always been a large part of what we are all about bothy as individuals and as musicians. That is something that pours through all aspects of our lives, and naturally it is also represented in our music. We always try to stay true to ourselves and to our heritage while pushing forward and finding new aspects to integrate into the existing Setherial sound. I think we have managed to take things a bit further on Ekpyrosis while still maintaining a core that is clearly definable as us, there are new ideas and different influences on it without straying too far from what we are all about. Experimentation should never be something that happens just for the sake of the experimentation itself though, the most important thing for us is that we acheive that vision that we want to realise with a given song or an album. Sometimes that may require some unorthodox things and sometimes it may require a more straightforward or even traditional approach.
– This CD is also more complex, which shows your musicianship, as well as your work as songwriters, have been improving. How do you now think has been your evolution since «Nord»?
It´s been a long time and many musicians have passed through our ranks since Nord, so naturally there have been some progression as well. The complexity of Ekpyrosis is something that we felt we wanted to try and I think it served the topic and the feel of the album well. When trying to create music to set the mood for a collapsing universe, there should be some chaotic and unorthodox aspects to it. It is all about the concept and making music and lyrics work together as well as possible.
– This record shows a well-cared composition with complex estructures and lengthy tunes. Moreover, though all your efforts so far have been different, this one sounds darker and, still refreshing your sound, it also mixes a few things from your first albums. Do you want to keep your music as a challenge for yourself?
Partly it is to challenge ourselves and partly it is to portray the topics at hand through sound as well as through words. It is true that there are aspects from our earlier albums laced through the tapestries of Ekpyrosis as well, we haven´t abandoned our past at any time but are merely adding to our musical universe as time grows and our creative fires calls for new wood to burn. Time will tell if the next album will take the complexity further or if we will go in a more straightforward direction. It will be determined by what ignites our creative flames this time around.
– Also due to all this I would like to know how the songwriting process tends to be like in SETHERIAL and if everything comes naturally. Do you aim to update/reinvent yourself with each release?
Usually we will work on some basic structures and ideas seperately before taking them to the band and turning them into actual songs. The final arrangement and so on are ususally a product of the combined input of the band though. It is not so much a matter of reinventing ourselves as a matter of keeping things interesting for ourselves. We do this for our own fullfillment so we always start within ourselves. If we would feel the desire to do something really simple and back to basic we would do so just as we went for the more complex and technical approach on Ekpyrosis.
– Anyway, what are your goals with SETHERIAL?
Personal fullfillment, trying to effectively make concept and sound become one unit and grow as individuals in the process. Our goals tend to be internal rather than external, we create to ease our own hunger for an outlet. Everything that follows is just a result of that basic need to create music and grow.
– Opening track, «A World in Hell» sounds quite chaotic, while others as «The Mournful Sunset of the Forsaken» have a certain melodic and epic feeling to it. How important/easy is for SETHERIAL keeping this good balance between «opposite» concepts?
It is something that just happens I guess, a result of our personalities and tastes. There is something very intriguing in finding a balance between beauty and the grotesque, between order and chaos, between the epic and violent. It is probably also a result of us trying to keep ourselves interested and hungry for more musically. If the music stays dynamic it is more interesting and challenging creatively.
– Yourself recorded the album; how positive is this for you as a band? As I guess you know exactly how you want the album to sound like.
It enabled us to be much more creative in the studio than otherwise since we didn´t have a limited period of studio time to work with in the same way as when you rent a studio. We were able to try more thing and work more on the details of the album, something that largely contributed to both the dark atmosphere and to the complexity of Ekpyrosis.
The actual production aspects of it was actually secondary, ever though the result turned out very well in terms of sound and everything the main thing was the possibility to stay creative all through the process.
– I haven’t found a vinyl verison for «Ekpyrosis» so I guess you haven’t released it but; have you thought about it?
There are discussions being held about a vinyl edition of Ekpyrosis, it isn´t completely decided on who will release it yet but hopefully we will have all the details worked out soon.
– This same year you have unleashed «Treason», your first EP in many years. How did you come up with this idea?
We had some material recorded that we felt deserved a release and we have always enjoyed that format even though we haven´t released many EPs. We had been in contact with Goathoned for a while and felt that it would be a good label to work with for a release of that nature, and it was something that both the band and the label were equally eager to realise.
– The band has had some line-up changes during its existence, do you think you have now found a more steady one?
Hopefully, time will tell I guess. You always hope that a line-up stays stabile, but as life goes on around the band things may change, that is something we have learned by now.
– In fact, latest addition has been drummer Empyrion, what has he brought to SETHERIAL?
He has brought great skill as a drummer, a personality that goes well with the rest of us and a dedication to his instrument and to the band that is really remarkable. We couldn´t be more pleased with his contributions and with what he has to offer.
– You have also recently signed with Debemur Morti Productions. How good are they for a band like SETHERIAL?
I think they will be the perfect label for the next Setherial album. They are dedicated and they believe in what we are doing, and for us that is what
really counts. We are entering this collaboration with great confidence that it will be mutually gratifying.
– Last time we saw you guys in Spain was when you toured with IMPIETY. What are your memories of those dates?
Apart from fever running through the band, it was a good experience and we look forward to returning to Spain for more shows in the future. The venue in Madrid was really cool if I remember correctly and the city itself was defenitly worth exploring as well.
– And finally, what are your near-future plans? I read your upcoming full-length album will be released next 2012. Could you anticipate us something about it?
It is too early in the process to really say anything about the direction of the next album yet but it will defenitely be clearly indentifiable as a Setherial album. We will be headlining the Autumn From Hell festival in november and there are discussions being held regarding other shows as well.
– That’s all, thanks again. Now feel free to add some final words.
Thank you for the support, keep the flame burning!