– Hello, thanks for your time. What’s currently going on in the GLORIOR BELLI’s camp?
Hey Sergio. We’re quite busy actually working on a couple of new tracks for an upcoming split with Nachtmystium as well as getting ready for the next live assaults to come.
– First off, could you please make some history of the band?
Sure, do you have 6 hours or so? I mean, that’s almost 10 years now. It’s actually not THAT long though, so I guess I can sum it up. Basically the highlights in Glorior Belli’s history are the release dates of our records. The first and unique demo – Evil Archaic Order – was released in June 2004, followed by the first full-length album – Ô Lavdate Dominvs – in May 2005. I did those records with the “original” line-up, having Antares as drummer and friend. The sophomore album – Manifesting the Raging Beast – was released in June 2007 via Southern Lord Records. That was a major turn in Glorior Belli’s carreer. It’s like our best selling album ever. Latest offering – Meet Us At The Southern Sign – reached the surface in June 2009 via Candlelight Records. That was a major turn in Glorior Belli’s carreer but not for the same reasons this time. I guess I see it as a transition album now, there are definitely some killer tunes/songs in that one but it’s not as impressive as a whole, may be tends to get too long. Anyway, this brings us to – The Great Southern Darkness – in collaboration with Metal Blade Records. And I still rehearse at the same studio than when it all started only now that little Satan geek made his point.
– Why did you pick the name of «Glorior Belli» for the band? Both its origin and meaning.
“Glorior Belli” is Latin for “to bask in pride at times of war” and obviously there is a deeper meaning behind, it reminds me how important it is to always challenge the cosmic scheme as well as it is a doctrine for self-betterment. For this is what a tenebrous path really essentially is all about, to develop/manifest one’s attraction for the Dark path and transcend it into a liberating Illumination.
– And what are the band’s main musical influences? As I think you have nuances from Stoner, Doom and several different styles.
David Eugene Edwards, 16HP/Woven Hand, Mr Phil Anselmo, Pantera, Down, Kurt Cobain, Alice In Chains, Neurosis, Acid Bath, Kyuss, Slash, Snot, Ved Buens Ende, for the most part.
– You will soon release your latest «The Great Southern Darkness». After getting the first reactions; what are your expectations?
The reactions have been pretty good so far but no surprise here.
– What does the album’s title reflect? And does it have something to do with the PANTERA’s album? Anyway, I think it represents
quite good your sound.
The concept behind The Great Southern Darkness finds its origin in the Sumero-Babylonian mythology and more accurately to the most significant aspects of the cult of the dragon Tiamat, in accordance to anti-cosmic gnosticism. Based on the creation of the Universe and its very ending, as everything shall return to primordial Chaos. Besides that, it was the most suitable title as it reminds some of our Americana/Blues influences and in all due respect echoes to another record from one of my favorite band, but that one is pretty easy to spot.
– Anyway, does it has any kind of link to your previous «Southern Sign»?
Yes, somehow both records are connected. «The Great Southern Darkness» is the logical continuation of our past effort. The use of the term «Southern» twice works perfectly for us, as it stands for the music as well as the notion of HELL.
– I could say this new effort features all your very own trademarks with an even better formula. Was this something you aimed for?
Yes indeed. Like I said, the whole point was to sort of ‘finish’ what we started with «Meet Us». Mostly instead of swimming upstream against the standards of Black Metal, we learnt how to make the best out of it.
– It also seems more solid than your previous record but, how could you say the band has evolved since then?
Well we simply emphasized the best elements of Glorior Belli into a monolith of raging Black Metal and deep New Orleans stoner grooves.
– In fact, Black Metal scene seems to be quite saturated these days and you have always been apart from all that, even more apart with each new release. Could you say this is a positive thing for you? Is this something important for GLORIOR BELLI?
We’re not apart on purpose, we’re apart because we simply don’t share any common interest with the general Black Metal scene. More importantly we just mind our own business, do what we want to do, express ourselves without feeling guilty. People always have to somehow associate you to something they can relate to, but what do you know about us really? And why would we care anyway. Nothing to prove you know, just keeping the madness rolling in. Each of our records has a special feel to it, from the debut to The Great Southern Darkness, and the reason why is because we, on the other hand, don’t restrain ourselves with the notion of being tagged as whatever people’s sorry little brains would like us to be.
– And due to this and all those elements that make you guys unique, I would like to know how the songwriting process tends to be and if it has changed over the years.
It actually has never changed. I’m the only one in charge of the composition, just used session people in the past for live purposes and mostly drummers in studio. So there’s no point here telling you how I randomly pick up my guitar
and let the ideas flowing in as I play along some chords, it’s just something personal. I usually start with a concept/ideas and then focus on a composition theme. I think it’s a good method for us at least because it really makes consistent records yet it’s harder to get some perspective from your own music when you’re alone.
– Guitars have always been something that has stand out off your music, and this time you make no exception What are your influences as guitar player?
I’m not really interested into technical guitar too much like shredding, fast riffing, but anyway I’m looking up to guitar players such as Jon Nödtveidt, Jerry Cantrell, Pepper Keenan, Robert Vigna, David Eugene Edwards… People who really got there own thing.
– Beside the album’s sound; what could you comment on its artwork as well as the main lyrical themes and the connection between both things?
Well, as you can see the cover is basically the representation of Tiamat, holding the earth in its claws and bring the cosmic illusion into flames, as her ultimate purpose is to release get back to primordial chaos. It’s really important for me that people understand the lyrics, as my ultimate goal is to give them the opportunity to forge the weapons of their own liberation, yet my words will confuse the weaker minds just like the fire of Lucifer can both illuminate and destroy. This is one of my favorite part (taken from ‘Negative Incarnate’): «From behind the nervous curtains of my trembling cosmic prison, the dark Gods are firmly waiting filled with hatred for the cosmos; outside the frame of creation lies the darkest of all secrets, the magic of the queen dragon waits for us to crush the gates!». Took me actually longer to write the lyrics than the damn music as I’ve spent a lot of time studying and arranging the texts in a poetic way, like I always did in the past. A French guy rhyming in English and singing about the forces of the nightside, it can’t get any better.
– You shooted a video for «They Call me Black Devil»; could you please tell us a bit about it?
Well basically, there’s a lot of humor in that video, starting with a fake budget-denied letter that I made myself underlining the cheapness of what’s to come. It’s kind of a fuck off to the music industry that echoes to the Red Fang video clip “Wires” where they waste 5,000$ on trashing random stuff with a car. I understand it can be confusing but that was the whole point of the video clip anyway. The rest is just really random, as I did it on my own with just a small camera. The most important here is the music, and there’s a reason why they actually call me Black Devil.
– If I’m not mistaken, each album you have released so far have came out via different labels. Would you mind elaborate a bit on this?
Well, shit just happens sometimes you know. What’s done is done and I can’t complain, as being signed on Metal Blade is definitely the greatest achievement for what started 10 years ago as a small yet ambitious band.
– So this «The Great Southern Darkness» is your first album with Metal Blade. How’s this cooperation being thus far?
I only expect the best out of this collaboration as we are absolutely determined to do what we have to in order to promote our new record the way it should be. I can feel that not a single drop of energy is being wasted and there’s a cool symbiosis in the collaboration. I’ve never been confronted to such professional and yet really supportive people, they know exactly how to take care of business with high levels of passion and perseverance. So that’s one less thing I need to worry about as a musician, and it takes a lot of weight off my shoulders to be honest.
– During these years of existence for GLORIOR BELLI have been
several changes in your line-up. Has this affected the band’s sound in any way or does it make things more difficult when it comes to create music?
Doesn’t affect the band at all, except for playing live that’s all.
– You are now a duo; will ever be more stable members?
We aren’t really a duo. Basically Glorior Belli is a full band now; I’m just keeping the identity of the other members secret for the time being until the time will be right.
– Beside GLORIOR BELLI, I would also like to get a bit into 11 AS IN ADVERSARIES. Why did you feel the need of releasing that album?
You know the whole point of creating “The Full Intrepid Experience of Light” was to get over the limitations and just exorcise a few demons that have been lying underneath the surface for a while, as I tend to be over creative sometimes. So when we sat down and listened to the album it just felt like we achieved something that we weren’t willing to label as Glorior Belli, even though it makes no difference in my mind, since I’m the only composer for both projects. But one thing is sure, The Great Southern Darkness wouldn’t be what it is, if it wasn’t for that one “off” record.
– And, was just one record or do you plan releasing more material anytime?
I already thought about the next album but I have to make sure that the two bands don’t share too much in common otherwise it just makes no sense. For the time being though my energy is all focused on Glorior Belli and we have tons of work lying ahead of us.
– France seems to have a growing Metal scene but; how do you see this as an «insider»? Any good bands to suggest?
I don’t listen too much to French bands in regard to my current playlist. I guess you know your classics better than I do buddy. If I start giving you names you’re gonna get me into troubles for forgetting friends.
– And finally, what are your near-future plans?
Playing live, promoting the new album, getting on tour, collaborating with Nachtmystium on a split, and always more music.
– That’s all from our side, thanks again for your time. If you want to add some final words, feel free to do it.
We will defeat and bring down the cosmic scheme!