With so many cool bands out there to check out I offer you some minor guidance by introducing you to CHAMBER OF TORTURE. Anders Ekdahl ©2020
When the band came into creation what was the main purpose for it?
-Greetings, fellas! This is Kostya, and I am the guitarist and the songwriter for the band Chamber of Torture. I am Paul, im the vocalist for the band Chamber of Torture.
First of all, thanks a lot for having us, super stoked to talk to you!
P. – Alright, now the band, first came into being back in 2004, I started it with the bunch of cool dudes, who would stop playing music after a while though, and it wasn’t until 2010 when I met Kostya (the guitarist, main composer and producer of the band) and other guys, that we started to play and I offered them to use this moniker, Chamber of Torture that is, again. So it’s safe to say that real beginning happened in March/April of 2010, when we started to play, write and record our music
K. – Here’s how it happened: once upon a time Me and Paul, we were walking down the railroad. Somehow we didn’t notice humongous freight train coming our way.. naturally it grinded our bodies into pulp, but then one hell of a talented surgeon managed to stitch us together and that entity was called “Chamber of Torture”
2. How hard is it to come up with a sound that is all yours? What bits’n’pieces do you pick up from other stuff to make it your sound?
K. – These sounds are like soundtrack, a consecutive extension to nonexistent horror movies. They are a sounds of those netherworlds which we describe in our songs. The trick is that you’ve gotta know what kind of atmosphere you want to get!
P. – Kostya has an incredible ear when it comes to writing music, I d say that he is more of a director of a movie when he composes these tunes of his.
I have no idea what kind of creative process you guys go through but how hard is it to record and release new songs?
K –Having arrived at decision to become a sound engineer and a producer, I made sure that all of my bands availed themselves of opportunity to write and record music in the most convenient way possible
P –! it is quite challenging, indeed and for many reasons. First of all, the sheer amount of material that we have created up to this point! Man! We’ve got 4 full length albums, plus an unreleased collection worth of 20 plus something songs, which in total makes it roughly up to, 60 songs! To me it means that this amount of material has to be learnt and practiced so that i don’t forget how to play my own damn songs, ha ha.. Then of course new songs, new lyrical ideas, new vocal lines, you ve got to stay original and inventive yet keeping it true to form so to speak. Basically adding more songs to your back catalogue to practice is alone fairly challenging. Then lets state the obvious, right? The process of recording and releasing of the new music is quite costly and I can tell you that, I can’t stress enough just how fortunate I am that Chamber of torture has the luxury of practicing and recording at one of the best studios in Saint-Petersburg, called Hibol, where Kostya works actually! It s fully equipped, state of the art kind of a studio! Killer place, more bands should come to record here, for sure!
Today technology allows you to record at home and release your music digitally. But in doing so is there a risk that you release only single songs because that is what is demanded to stay atop and therefore you end up killing the album for example?
K. – Such availability results in oversaturation, it’s really easy to go unnoticed and drown in this infoglut
P. – I must say that we grew up, in the 90s, the very last great decade of music, when music actually MATTERED, and of course I will always love the albums! Because of how much work was put into it, how much intellectual effort, how many ideas were utilized, how much time and frustration comes into creating something, you ve got to eager to see the realization of this, you ve got to touch it, look at it, it has to be something real, something physical! My favorite format is CDs, but it can also be a cassette or a vinyl, but anyway, when you put so much work into something – digital release is not enough at least for the artist! It takes quite some time to come up with the album, you know, much like any other form of art, movies, for instance! Back in the day people were putting many hours of work into making a good movie and music! Also it teaches you to fully appreciate what you ve got, when you open a new CD, read the lyrics, look at the band photos and stuff.. you just don’t have the same impact when you listen to one song, somewhere on the internet. On the other hand, you can’t deny the convenience of the modern day technologies and my take is that The True band shall always think in terms of albums, and live performances, but you can use internet for your own good as well. For instance, we can have a full blown album on our hands, but we can drop a song a month, so that by the end of year, we can drop the whole record, should someone need to have real cd! Plus in doing so we’d secure ourselves from having our material leaked at once! So yeah I agree, there s a danger that it might kill the concept of having an album, but rather so for the newer bands, who are adopted to the age of internet. But the older bands I believe should stick to the tried and true formula of making a full blown record!
I for one feel that the change in how people listen to music today, by downloading it and expecting to get it for free, will kill music as we know it. What kind of future is there for music?
K. – Nothing can kill good music, period. There isn’t much of it left, but it’s definitely there
P. – it will definitely kill the music industry, but It won’t kill a musician. That being said, I think live performances and real time interaction will be worth a great deal more, coincidently it may become a sole financial income for the musician, for better or worse, so.
What kind of responses do you get to your music? What has been the thing that has gotten the most attention?
K. – Response?!!!… there are but 5 folks who respond to our music, and they all happened to play in Chamber of Torture
P. – mostly we get positive responses for what we do. I think its because you can always tell when someone is really dedicated to his craft and not just jumping a bandwagon, you know? But to be honest I don’t care about responses at all, in fact we re trying to have a rather negative reaction ha ha.. Cos man, we re playing in a Death Metal band after all, we gotta be offensive, we gotta trigger some negative reaction! But of course it doesn’t mean that we don’t care about the quality of what we do! In fact its quite opposite – we are perfectionists big time! I can tell you that musicians who play in heavy bands are miles ahead of any of these so called artists you get to hear on the radio.. That stuff is truly offensive actually as it absolutely dumbs down the listener yet it’s regarded as something great, but its just a garbage. As for the most attention, I d say that our videos spiked some interest in us, more than 4 records did, collectively, ha ha.. By the way, guys, we shot that jackass kind of a video last year, where we tried that awful fish you fellas eat. Surstreming or something… jesus, that was horrible… but guess what?! That video got most responses!!!
We live in a world where there are no real distances between people communicating anymore. What has been the most surprising contact so far?
K. –Once I saw Chris Barnes talking to a crow and I thought to myself: hey, I am no worse than that! So I wrote him, but when he replied, he told me that I wasn’t as interesting a partner in conversation and that he didn’t have enough time (apparently all of his time was occupied by birds and plants with which he converses)
P. – Umm.. well, frankly I can’t say that anyone truly contacted us, you know, like I mean, someone you wouldn’t expect to. But I would say Evgeniy Butenko from Eclectic records, contacting us with the offering to release our albums, was that kind of contact to me, I was surprised. Thanks to his efforts we released our 3rd and 4th albums, Cadaverous Omen and Necrodomain respectively. I would love to have certain people involved in the making our records, but they didn’t respond or weren’t interested in participating in it per ce.
Does playing in a band make you feel like you are a part of a greater community? What has music brought with it that you would have otherwise missed out on?
K. – there’s no sense of community to me, however I think that an individual deprived of art of self-expression tends to dwindle and becomes ultimately unhappy
P. – it definitely does! I truly feel like we carry the torch, that was passed to us from the forefathers of the genre, if it weren’t for Obituary, Cannibal Corpse, Grave, Entombed and the likes, we wouldn’t be here doing what we truly love doing and being passionate about. That thought makes you feel like you re a part of the greater community, but for the most part, you feel this way because you get to play and share your music with the fans from all over the world, and this is where sense of belonging to a far greater community truly felt, cos music is indeed universal language! Also to answer the second question, I d say that it is self-containment that comes when you create something, the people you get to know through music, It would definitely be missed out, had It not become passion of mine
What is the live scene like for you? Do you feel that playing live helps building a bigger following? Что для вас сцена?
K.- The stage is of highest priority! All of the magic takes place there. This is where you reach your maximal emotional peak
P. – live scene is my shrink ha ha. But seriously, it is such a therapy, I love it being both on the stage and in the crowd. However, that fact that I can be on the stage, to be able to let out these emotions, to get the crowd going, perform, man, live scene is the recreation I crave for! You re only as good as your live show is, so of course I love playing live a lot, to earn a respect from the fans and naturally it assists in getting a bigger following
What plans do you have for the future?
K. –To write more music, to play live shows, and eventually to find that surgeon who stitched us together, to torture him with our music until every single neuron in his brain disrupts
P. – We are working on the new record right now, its going to be our 5th album and the plan is to create the sickest (ie the heaviest, most brutal, honest, true…) old school death metal we possibly can create.
While we are at it, guys please check out our former works, Behead before Interment, Entorturement, Cadaverous Omen and Necrodomain – these are four records we did during the last decade! Because we can talk a lot, but in the end of a day, let the music do the talking!
Of course, I hope this crazy pandemic to be over rather sooner than later.
Also, thank you guys for the interview!
Much love for Sweden too! Love this country, hopefully we get to play there one day!