Estela - Bass
Alfred Berengena - Drums
Nosfer - Guitars
Noctvrn - Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards
Profundis Tenebrarum, a band that has carved its own place in the world of the underground and has published a brilliant third album, "Apocalypchrist" in 2011, let's learn something more talking with them.
Welcome to Aristocrazia Webzine, I avoid linger on pleasantries, I prefer to start by asking you to tell: what you think is essential to understand who are Profundis Tenebrarum, a bit of your history and some details about the band?
I started Profundis Tenebrarum as a one man band, back in 1997, while I was playing guitar in my first band, Testimont (Thrash/Death), in my hometown. I knew to Dave Komando, and he took drums control until 2005. I recorded with him 3 demos ("Dark & Eternal" 1997, "Abhorrent Christendom" 2001, and "Traumatic Soul Coronation" 2001) and our first album ("Extreme Violent Art" 2004), then we started to play some shows, so I called to arms to Nosferatum (guitar) and Estela (bass). Final summer 2005, he left the band, so Hammerhead played with us for 1 year. Several concerts we played together, but we never recorded anything with him. For personal reasons, Hammerhead left the band, and we contact to Alfred Berengena, who is behind our trenches since 2007 until today. We recorded our second album ("Pathogenesis") with him, and we toured through Scotland and Spain. Once we were back, we started to compose our new album ("Apocalypchrist"), where Alfred Berengena made as produces, he recorded drums, and was sound technician for the guitars, bass and vocals recording. He also mixed and mastered "Apocalypchrist".
You are a reality that exist from fifteen years, what were the goals you have achieved and, before going into detail talking about "Apocalypchrist", could you give our readers the definitions that represent its predecessors "Extreme Violent Art" and "Pathogenesis"? It's an easy way to invite them to listening to.
We never though to be where we are right now, we were just 2 maniacs closed in a rehearsal room, for hours and hours, playing some sick music to satisfy our most dark emotions, until we recorded our first album "Extreme Violent Art" . It was our first studio album, after 3 demos. It’s still very special for me, we were only 2 members, Dave Kommando and me. He recorded the drums and I recorded guitars, bass, vocals… It was the first time we decided to spread our plague, the previous 3 demos were only for us and our closest friends circle. "Extreme Violent Art" was released in December 2004 and was sold out early February 2005, less than 2 months! It was a great surprise for us! I called to arms to Nosfer (guitar) and Estela (Bass), and after a few shows, and 2 different drummers, finally we contact to Alfred Berengena, who recorded the drums for our second album "Pathogenesis". We grew up like band and musicians, and Alfred Berengena gave a new dynamism to our music, including some drum patterns nothing usual into Black Metal, creating a devastating, aggressive and brutal ambience.
In the sound of "Apocalypchrist" I felt a strong Scandinavian approach, which compositional and emotional relationship do you have with the Swedish and Norwegian black metal? There were records that you listened to a lot during the preparation of the album, which may have affected its form?
Our main influences are the old bands, since middle 80’s (Venom, Bathory...) until old Nordics bands, Norwegian, Swedish, Finish bands, from final 80’s early/middle 90’s. There isn’t a special band which we are focussed in, but I always loved the malignancy aura that emanates from the cold northern Black Metal, and naturally it flowed outside of me through music. I never cared if it sounds as northern Black Metal, this is what I feel, and this is the way I express it.
Chilling, melodic, atmospheric and angry, the songs go from killers mold as in "As Nemesis Burns" at the darkest and most dilapidated "Darkness Unfolds", why these turns so sharply? And what comes from the choice of using two instrumental tracks in a row?
Since a long time ago, I wanted to unite this two concepts under the same album. One part of the album really wild, fast, brutal, blasphemous, hateful, and a darker part, penetrating into the inner darkness. Both parts are extremely different, but with the same intensity and darkness. We wanted to combine two concepts, as different as extremes between themselves, into the same album, letting flow the darkness and hate fills the listener soul through the musical ambience oppression.
As the album is diverse within itself, it remains, in many ways, true to a very nineties vision of black metal, as you can produce music like this and not fall into the trap of pulling out a well done homework and nothing more?
Profundis Tenebrarum was born in middle 90’s (1997), so that influences us when we compose music, when we execute it and when we record it. That’s why we still have the 90’s sound. "Apocalypchrist" is just what we intended since we started the composition process, intense and fast as an earthquake, dark as Erebus.
How the work in the rehearsal room does? How did a song born? Do you have specific roles in the field of composition for the music and lyrics? In regards of the lyrics from what sources do you draw inspiration?
Our drummer, Alfred Berengena, lives almost 5 hours from Valencia, where we live. So when all is once composed, we record the guitars of the whole album and we send it to him for he can compose and practise drums. We he is ready, we go to his home (he has his own studio) and the drums recording process starts. We lead him about how we would like the drums execution, and he always put some new ideas, so it gives a different dynamism to every song, maybe that’s why our sound is different to the rest of the bands. Then we record guitars, bass and vocals.
Alfred Berengena is cited as a session, if I remember correctly it was also in Numen, is so difficult to find a full-time drummer? How was it working with him in the studio as it is also discussed steps of mixing and mastering of the album?
Yes! You are right, he plays drums for Numen, Nebulah, Olvido, Baalphegor, and an endless list of bands, as different as diverse, where he plays or has played or has recorded. He lives for drums, that’s his work, so I understand that he can’t compromise 100% with only 1 band, but he is really involved in our band, we consider him one more active Profundis Tenebrarum member.
Noctvrn, your discs have been released by the label of what you own, the Antichristian Front Records, how did it born? What prompted you to put on your own label?
Antichristian Front Recs. was born for the release of my projects in CDR or tape format, like Martyrum Omnium. Later I released the Aboriorth (Spa) debut album, and then came Profundis Tenebrarum (Spa), Eld (Nor), Hat (Nor), Thermal Pulse (Nor), Black Autumn (Ger), Marthyrium (Spa), Black Altar (Pol), Graveyard (Spa), Mord (Nor), and so on… I mean, what started as a project for the release of my own stuff, became a serious label that has released in proCD, 12” vinyl, and 7” EP vinyl... I received offers from other labels for the "Apocalypchrist" release, but I prefer to have the total control of our stuff . It will be co-released with another label, or labels... we have to discuss it. Time will tell, but sure it will be released in 12”LP soon... so stay tuned.
How do you are active for the promotion of the album under Antichristian Front Records, both as directly affected artist and producer for others?
I send flyers, posters, promo CD’s, or promo CDR’s to labels, webzines, fanzines, radio stations, promoters... What most I appreciate in a band of my label, is how the band promote themselves, there are bands that don’t move a single finger to spread their music, and others which are sending promo packs to expand and promote their music to every corner of this world. These are the bands which I’m really interested in, not a "Super Black Metal Stars Band". Unfortunately, I can’t dedicate all my time to my label and bands, that’s why I thank to my label’s bands that they, in part, promote themselves.
In total freedom, of course, what do you think of the actions of magazines and websites/blogs like ours who engage in reviews? What you considers is the best way to have feedback not necessarily better in terms of "score" but real about what the reviewer has heard and received from the disk? One of the complaints that I often felt in the world of the band is to be treated in some cases with "lightness" and without a minimum depth.
Every person involved into true underground deserves my respect, webzines, fanzines, radio stations, labels, promoters, distros, etc. But it’s true that in most of the cases the reviews are quite "light", I mean, always talking about how fast or slow is a band, sound quality, artwork, etc. but there are not very much reviews where talk about band technical compositions, true bands beliefs and convictions, etc. Years ago (80's & 90's) you could read an interview, or a review in magazines or fanzines, where you could feel identified with the band and it’s music through their convictions, you could feel the band had a true attitude. It’s something beyond music.
From reviewer to an artist who has kindly sent a copy of their work I ask you this: don't you think the world of the Internet, while offering some advantages, it is globalizing too, making uninhabitable the environment? I mean, in our office came even two or three hundred requests for review in mp3, so it costs nothing to press a button and send everywhere packets of mp3. So, don't we lose contact with the art? It doesn't harm the work and the expression of someone like you, Profundis Tenebrarum, that have poured time and dedication into a disk that has developed a good packaging? It isn't simplistic to "kill" all reducing it to an annex of 010101?
Totally agree. In my opinion it is totally necessary to send promo stuff, CD, CDR, tape, vinyl format, with the artwork, lyrics (in case of the band includes it in the artwork), and if it’s possible a short band biography. You can listen and touch the band’s art, the PC screen is very cold and it lacks of the true band texture and pure sound, deformed by MP3 compression.
What is your thought on the current metal scene? Merits, flaws and points that just do not go down?
To be honest, I think the metal scene is overflowed, there are thousands of bands, some of them really good, but mostly are pure bullshit, nothing new, nothing innovative, with extreme Pro Tools edition and production. Many bands record something that they can’t reproduce on a stage... I’m into 80’s and 90’s Black and Death Metal bands, and only a few new bands, who deserve my respect and support.
And specifically your thought about the black metal scene?
Repeating what others did years before, has no merit. You can be influenced by old bands, but repeating the same is not necessary, somebody did it before than you, and in most cases, much better, so try to be dynamic, innovative, imaginative and create something good. A least you must believe in what are you creating!!!! Black Metal is not for stupid kids, who are bored a Saturday afternoon and decide shoot some pictures with corpse painting, spikes, chains, programming a fast drum machine and line guitar recording with overdrive vocals and "Satan’s Blood..." lyrics. That is not Black Metal! That is a stupid bored person with too much free time, a lack of talent wishing to draw attention.
In Italy it has the habit of using a term, "scene", which should indicate a large number of bands that go in the same direction for purpose and support, which now more than twenty years has remained a beautiful fairy tale, and nothing moreover, how is the situation in your country? There is a real scene or not?
Still there are some old bands in active, some of them have returned just a few years/months ago, but basically here in Spain happens the same than in Italy, but here there are a few new bands who deserve a total support for their musical quality and inspiration, far away from mediocrity, bands like Domains, Aboriorth, Marthyrium, Graveyard, Korgüll The Exterminator, Foscor, Ered, Lux Divina, Abrahel, Akerbeltz and some more I don’t remember now, sure they will understand me, and sure they know who they are...
Profundis Tenebrarum they have a live dimension? If the answer is yes, what was the more memorable concert or festival at which you have participated? And how much is important for musicians to express themselves on stage?
When we go on stage, we don’t use, spikes, chains, bullets belt, or this kind of things. We don’t want to be remembered as a band which spite fire and vomit blood, we will be remembered by our music, the true essence and our true devotion, not our image. I understand that bands with a lack of musical spirit have the needing of using all this paraphernalia to fill the emptiness of their music. Of course not all the bands which use this paraphernalia are bad as musicians, but most of them, since my point of view, are just ridiculous. Live shows are the most important way to show the true band’s level, transmitting and spitting all our wrath and hate directly to the listener.
I specially remember our show in Glasgow (our first show out of Spain!), it was amazing how the around 150 people who came to this live ritual became crazy since the first song! Another great show was in a Spanish fest. called Move Your Fucking Brain IV. We played for around 700 people, total madness unleashed since the first chord!
What are the next projects in the pipeline? There are organized dates? Maybe a passage in our peninsula?
We are focused in the composition of our new Opus, that’s our main target. Going to play to Italy would be great, we have been playing with Handful Of Hte, next to Barcelona, at Hospitalet de Llobregat, really nice guys.
Thanking you for your time, I know that this time I have to declare the interview over, there's just time to say goodbye or to send a last message to our readers.
Thanks to you, Gabriele, for your time, interest and support. We appreciate it very much, everyone involved into the true underground scene is always welcome and respected. "Apocalypchrist" will burn your souls from the very depths of Hell...