Norwegian deathrash is not the most common thing that spins in my disc player but CONDOR sure changed that. All questions answered by Maggressor (guitars). Anders Ekdahl ©2017
We all come into music with our own baggage. We want different things from the music. How does the vision you had for the band when you started compare to the vision you have for the band today? What is this band really all about? What do you want with your music?
-I would say that the vision for the band’s sound has changes slightly. We started out wanting to sound like Aura Noir (hence the name), with a lot of black metal influences. As you can hear from our 2010 demo, ‘Facing the First Winter’, the sound was way more black metal oriented back then, than it is now. I guess black thrash was the thing to play when we started out, but as we grew older, the music gradually turned into more pure thrash metal. At least in my mind it did. Our upcoming album “Unstoppable Power” does not have much to do with black metal, except maybe for the vocals.
Condor is, and has always been, about playing fast and aggressive music that hopefully, in some way, can reflect what metal bands did in the early 80’s.
Is there a difference in people’s attitude towards you if you don’t come from a cool place like LA or NY or London? Does it help to be from Norway today?
-I don’t really think so, but I guess you can say that there is “more competition” in Oslo than in most other cities. I mean, if you’re a decent band in Australia, everyone comes to you shows, because there are so few new bands down there. But if you’re a decent band from Oslo, there are a lot of alternative gigs to go to, which in a way may make it more difficult. However, I guess you do get more attention as a Norwegian band, people might be more open to check it out initially, since there has been a wave of good bands from Norway in the last 10 years.
When you release an album that get pretty good feedback, how do you follow up on that? How important is that I as a fan can identify album to album?
-I guess the only thing to do is to try to pick it up from where you left off with the previous record. To me it is very important for a band to stay in, at least, a similar style to where they started. If you look at bands like Ketzer, they should have split up and started a new band, or at least changed the name before changing the style the way they did. I find it idiotic to stay with the same name if the music is completely different, but I guess some bands want to keep the “fame” they got for their previous material.
What is the biggest challenge in the creation of an album? How do you write the really cool songs?
-I, myself, find it very difficult to get back into the habit of making riffs and songs after recording an album. It took us over a year before we wrote the first song for Unstoppable Power, after releasing the the S/T one. In metal today I guess its also quite difficult to find the line between ripping old bands off, but still sounding old-school. I lot of bands has tried to “invent” something new lately, with this avant-garde metal, which I personally can’t stand. It’s important to try and evolve from previous releases, while still keeping the bands sounds in tact. I think this is the most challenging part.
In Condor, we usually write the riffs at home, and then we put the songs together when we meet up at rehearsals. The best songs is usually when we have a clear vision of how the song should sound before putting it together. With this record, we were all on the same page when it came to how we wanted everything to be, which made it easier to produce quality material.
I saw Dave Grohl’s documentary about Sound City and it made me wonder what it is about analogue recording that you don’t get with digital? Have you ever recorded analogue?
-I do not know too much about that stuff, but I think that you can compare it to listening to vinyl records vs CDs. Personally, I have never recorded anything analogue, simply because we haven’t had the equipment or the knowledge to do so. However, I think that if you know what you’re doing, and know how you want a recording to sound, you can get a pretty similar sound digitally. I think that when people talk about digital recordings, they are probably referring to the polished pro-tools sound that most popular bands have these days, but you wont necessarily get a polished sound when recording digitally.
What is it like to sit there with a finished album? Do you think much what people will think of it?
-It is the best feeling really. Usually I listen to it once or twice when I get it, but after undergoing the whole process of mixing and mastering, I’m usually pretty sick of the album by the time gets released. For example, with this upcoming record of ours, we recorded it over a year ago, and we started working on the songs about 3-4 years ago, so I’m pretty tired of it by now.
Obviously it’s nice to get recognition for something you’ve worked with for a long time, but its not THAT important.
How important are the lyrics and what message do you want to purvey?
-To be honest, not really important at all to me. It’s usually the same old stuff; hell, demons, sacrifices and so on.
Ever since I first got into metal the art work has been a main motivator in buying a record. What part does art work for album covers play in the world of the band?
-Good artwork can definitely make a difference when it comes to first impressions of an album. In the case of bad cover art, just look at Infernal Majesty’s None Shall Defy. Worst cover art ever, and for that reason I would probably never have checked it out if no one had played it to me. On the other hand, the new Vampire record has such a good album cover that I would probably have bought the record just from the cover if I didn’t already know the band. In Condor, we’ve never really cared that much as we’ve never wanted to pay for it until now, hehe. For Unstoppable Power, we were lucky enough to get in contact with ROK from Sadistik Exekution. We went back and forth a bit, but ended up with a killer original painting from him.
When you play live do you notice a degree of greater recognition from the fans with each new time you pass through town?
-Definitely. We haven’t really played in the same towns too much, except for Oslo, but it seems like a bigger crowd shows up every time we play. However, we haven’t played a lot of concerts lately. We played a couple in February, but before that we hadn’t played live in about 1,5 years, and I don’t think we will for the foreseeable future.
What do you see in the future?
-First of all, our new record entitled ‘Unstoppable Power’ will be released in a month or so, through High Roller Records. Which I’m very excited for, as I am very satisfied about how the album turned out. Other than that, the future for Condor is quite uncertain, as I currently live in Australia, and the other guys have other projects going. At the time being Condor is on indefinite hiatus, but who knows, maybe we’ll start playing again in the future.