I was so impressed by DARKEND’s new CD that I just had to find out more. Hence this interview. Hopefully it will answer some of your questions too. Anders Ekdahl ©2012
How conscious is the choice of band name? What is it that you are trying to say by combining the two words dark and end?
-It was very conscious. You should know that the moniker “Darkend” derives first of all from an artifice commonly used in the esoteric tradition either to conceal the truth or to convey to the reader a message that transcends the written text: the Anagram. The name of the band (which we have changed by stitching together the terms “dark” and “end” to remain faithful to the above stated principle) as it is used symbolizes the Abyss, the unconscious opening its doors to mystery and dream, while anagrammed and stripped of its appearance, this name reveals its REAL meaning: in fact it is a key term used in an ancient Sumerian transmigration prayer that we will reveal in the lyrics of the song closing our fifth full-length.
Your music is not strictly this or that. Where do you find inspiration from for it? How limited are you in what works and does not work musically?
-Our main inspirations are our Souls and the vibrations that we receive from the earthly and unearthly spheres: the impalpable mist that bleakly wraps the Ghosts and that sulphur kind of Black, Obscure, Dark & Heavy litanies; those lost graveyard laments echoing of funereal chant and the Grand Guignol himself, with his miserable cult of Death; the fascinating, bleeding, corrupting Thorns and the XIX century’s massive Classical curses; the screams, the decrepit Spirits and oh, of course… the Horror. We let the music flow through our Spirits without limitations, everything that comes straight from the inside works just perfectly for us and for what we want to reach.
I get a feeling that there is a concept to your album. What can you tell us about the album?
-Yes, like all the previous DARKEND albums “Grand Guignol” is a concept album in it takes his name from a theatrical movement born in Paris at the end of the XIX° century and specialized in naturalistic terror and macabre shows, where more than often reality and fantasy become one. We decided to use its name for 2 main reason: because it describes perfectly the nature of what is the core of the whole DARKEND philosophy (what we use to call “THE THEATRE OF HORRORS”) and because it is metaphorically connected to the main concept of the album: in fact, lyrically, this third opus takes its moves from a conscious and profound esoteric/philosophical research exploring through a rich narrative plot the common roots of occultism and spiritualism, self-martyrdom and black magic ceremonies. There, behind the curtain, you will hear a conceptual tale of sanctified sins and loathed purity, of mercy and murder, of gentle wickedness and dismal virtue, where everything is melted with its contrary: a theatre of abominations in which humanity roams unconscious of the highest cosmos’ secrets.
Is there a greater freedom not being signed to a larger label when it comes to being creative?
-We always had the maximum freedom in our artistic choices, and it always will be like that on DARKEND. We would simply refuse contracts or deals that should limit us as “creative beings”. DARKEND will always remain free at 100%, no matter how large our label will be.
How do you find the people that will make your visions come true? Is it hard to find the right kind of people to work with? Hmm, no, we are very lucky about this, I have to admit. After some delusions (you know, the music business is full of maggots and it’s quite impossible to don’t meet one of them once) now we have around some great people full of passion and that fully believe on DARKEND. They are first of all fans of our music, and this is just perfect. It’s the way it should always be, I think.
How much time and effort have you spent on the album? What would you consider a success and what would be a failure?
-A lot of effort and time. When we start to work on a new album, it completely absorb us for month. It’s like to be in a parallel, dark dimension. Our idea of success is this: being able to express the abysses of our Souls with crystalline purity and, through this, moving our fans not only to listen but to Feel. On the other hand, failure in not contemplated: if we will not be able to express ourselves with such passion and sincerity, DARKEND will cease to exist.
What part do the social media play in promoting a band and what do you get out of promoting the band through social media?
-We use social media a lot, especially Facebook is helping us very much in keeping contacts with fans, spreading our news, reviews, interviews and everything that concern DARKEND. Also youTube is great, every day we receive enthusiastic messages of guys that had discovered our music on it and that then decide to buy our albums through our digital stores.
I often wonder how you put together a set list for a gig when you have a concept album to promote. What songs do you pick and how important does the concept become in a live environment?
-Actually we don’t chose the live songs referring on the concept but only to their musical characteristics. Especially when we are on tour, we don’t have enough time on stage to represent an entire concept, but for sure it will be good and we will do something like this in the future: probably, when “Grand Guignol – Book II” will be released, we will try to set up something similar to a theatrical representation to play both concepts together.
What future do you envision for Darkend?
-An European tour with Cradle Of Filth and Rotting Christ (it will begin the first week of November), a new album in 2013 and a lot of new project to work on, climbing up to the highest peaks!