I love it when bands get in touch with me and want me to check them out and they then turn out to be awesome. Like CAEDEOUS did. Anders Ekdahl ©2018
Do you feel that is has gone the way you intended when you formed back in the days?
Paulo J. Mendes: Project Caedeous had different stages over several years if we can call it that way, but since the year of its conception to the current time, the project has been through a constant process of metamorphis, on which i had different goals to be achieved and it ended going the opposite way which ended with me twith only one option “to scrap it down and rebuild it again from the ground”, but since then the last project mutation i think its going exactly where me and all the musicians and team involved wanted it to be. So far the reception of the debut double edition album Domini Tenebrarum and Orchestral Sessions: Domini Tenebrarum has been receiving some good aceptance from the audience, press, and some fan base we already have and additionally i could not be happier with our current Caedeous family (band members, staff, and crew), whose elements all together are starting to shine and see a light at the end of the tunnel.
How do you feel about your latest recording? Did it come out the way you expected it to?>
Paulo J. Mendes: Well we think that the Domini Tenebrarum record achieved its main goal, we expected to do one type of sound and concept and we have concluded it the way we wanted it to be with no rushes and stress, so we are very happy with the end result however there are some little pieces which probably needed a little more work and like all products we know what we did wrong and good and we are taking those lessons forward for the second album Obscurus Perpetua.
Do you feel that you by now has found a sound that is the band and that you can build on it ?
Paulo J. Mendes: Yes definatly, the first elements of Caedeous were initially built on black metal however with time it has evolved into a more dramatic / horror symphonic black metal type of sound which we are now very happy with. The last piece of the puzzle was adding a voice that could fit that general picture of the concept idea, when Rute Fevereiro was recruited to the project and she got the concept almost instantly she added the cherry over the cake to the sound that i always have had for project Caedeous. From that point forward we built and finished Domini Tenebrarum, then explored a full orchestral sessions version for Domini Tenebrarum and now we are already entering in the studio for the second album Obscurus Perpetua which will take the same type of sound but show it more mature more evolved than the previous one.
Is having a message in the lyrics important to you? What kind of topics do you deal with?
Paulo J. Mendes: Yes most definatly. For me and for Caedeous due to its nature of being a conceptual / theatrical album, having the message in its lyrics is essential. For this album Domini Tenebrarum we have approached topics of human corruption, angels descent, demon possession, witchery and sourcery, pagan rituals and the black plague during the 14th – 17th century.
How important is the cover art work for you? Can a really cool cover still sell an album in this day and age of digital download?
Paulo J. Mendes: For me the cover art has a big role in the creative process of an album end product, i see it as a the final piece of a product that will sell to the audience and probably the first contact people will have when they look at a CD being it digitally or physically and think “This seems interesting” and they pick it up and want to take it for a spin to see what is all about the sound. Even though the times have changed and the market tendencies aswell, i think that cover art will always be essential like i said above, and its crucial for selling however when the factor of cover art is gonne and people listen to the music product it better be good otherwise the art itself wont sell an album in my point of view in business opinion.
Why is it so hard for bands that come from places not the US or UK/Sweden/Scandinavia to break big? What is success to you and is it something you’d like to achieve?
Paulo J. Mendes: By experience of having worked and still work as a professional composer in the United States and also having the other part of being born and raised in Lisbon, Portugal and judging by a lot countries in Europe which i have visited, i think the main issue is cultural on the way art is handled or is seen and of course the business oportunities that a country has to offer to its citizens but most importantly the mindset of the people. In this previous thought a country from northern Europe or even the United States etc… takes care of culture and art in a very different way and the music industry is stronger and thrives so it means more business and more business industry opportunities where a single person can dedicate its purpose to be a professional in music only, by personal experience i did not found this on my home country unfortunatly and had to look abroad to make a living for what i love the most music.
For the second question, sucess for me is being able to do what you love the most, that is working in what you believe and stand for, for me in this case is music and to do good music, fortunatly for me as a composer i have made in the trailer / soundtrack music industry however as a metal musician / composer and for my breathen brothers of Caedeous we are still looking for a path which enables us all to make a living of metal music. With time, sacrifice, good business strategic vision and hardwork, i personally think that all happens in a way or another, the trick is to never quit no matter what, and that is exactly what Caedeous is doing at the moment.
Today the competition is harder. You got plenty of digital platforms for new talent to display their music. How do you do to really stand out in a world where everything but the music is blind to the listener?
Paulo J. Mendes: Yes the times have indeed changed, most of us in Caedeous have been born and lived in the analogic world (eighties, nineties) and we have now this new big digitally world but despite being a lot of “background noise” with thousands of new artists to sprout like mushrooms every second i think that being persistent, focused, having a very laid out plan for short / mid / long term, maintain a professional attitude but also have the feet on the ground and have some dollars / euros to show yourself, everything is possible however like everything, personal sacrificies need to always be made in order to achieve something, that is something that i have learned over the time.
8. What is your local scene like? How important is a national scene for a band to be able to break out and make it international?
Paulo J. Mendes: Our local scene has been growing in the last years for the better, the music projects are becoming more developed, the festivals are a thing that a growing a lot over the years aswell with more opportunities for bands to show themselves to the audience. I think that is still important for a band to have a place on the national scene if no money resources are available to invest however due to the era of globalization and the internet everything is possible nowadays if you have a really good product… Like i usually say… the sky is the limit if you are really serious into breaking in to the music industry, but like everything it can go good or go deeply wrong, it is a tricky business, it has a lot of going up and going down like a roallercoaster, and a person needs to be mentally ready for the huge storms of up and downs, because by experience this is not easy and most of the times we are more given “noes” than “yes” and have to learn with them and with the frustration that arises from that and keep moving forward and pushing it harder.
Rock and metal has come a long way since the early 70s but still some people’s attitudes towards it seem to be left in the stone age. How accepted is metal in your area? Is it like in Finland where it seems to come with the mother’s milk?
Paulo J. Mendes: Unfortunatly, no if we compare to Finland. In my own opinion i think the issue is cultural, i really wish that we all have been grown in a different country due the nature of the sound we do but that was never a option for us. In our country there is still a lot of “non-aceptance” of metal in the mainstream.
What does the future hold for you?
Paulo J. Mendes: Well the future is always hard do predict, by experience plans and dreams usually do not happen the way we want them to be… however our dream for the future of Caedeous is to be able to continue to do good metal music, being ourselves, to keep growing in our own pace, growing our audience and one day putting all the people involved in the project to be able to have the dignity to make a life of living from music which is the thing we love the most. Apart from that lets cross fingers and see what happens, we are hopeful that everything is getting into line to our current plans, now it is the time time to give time to time to things to evolve naturally and not forced.
To conclude out interview i would like to personally thank in the name of all members and staff of Caedeous to Battlehelm Magazine for the opportunity and time for sitting with us for this interview piece \m/ you rock.