DIABULUS IN MUSICA

diabulusDIBULUS IN MUSICA is one of these acts whose name you might have seen in print but never really checked out. With a new album out you really ought to check out this cool act. Anders Ekdahl ©2016

You have been around for some time and have several releases to you name yet you don’t seem that famous or well heard of. What has hindered you from being in the conscious of every metal fan?
-It’s weird, but we receive messages almost every day from new fans, people who had never heard about us before. I can understand this in the general metal fan, but it surprises when they are especially symphonic metal fans. It’s probably because most of them are not searching for new music in the genre. There are big names over there that are releasing albums and touring non-stop, so they probably have enough with them and don’t feel the need to search for more bands. We have also noticed this when we have toured as support. I remember opening for Tarja a few years ago in Belgium for example. There was a big line in our merch stand and we sold a lot. People was enthusiastic about our music and also wondered how they had never heard about us before. I think I have the answer: money. To be well known (apart from being a band of quality, of course) you need to spend a lot of money on promotion, especially touring. I have also heard this first hand from big bands. They were lucky to have that support when they started. In our case we have gone step by step. We couldn’t think about investing on promo and touring. All we could do was what a musician must do: music. We have always tried to do our best as musicians and work hard on that. The rest is not in our hands for the moment. Anyway, we also have noticed that when we are supporting a band more and more people come just to see us too and that’s a good sign.

I often wonder how people discover that they can do what they do. How did you discover that you can sing and play instruments?
-In my case I don’t remember, because I come from a family of musicians and I’ve been singing my whole life. I started singing in the choir my mother conducted when I was a child. Then I started to study flute and guitar when I was 8 years old so I wasn’t really conscious about my capacity or not to do music. I think I realized that later, when I was around 20. I remember the first time I joined a band, I was 18 and a friend of mine convinced me to apply as a singer in a rock band. I didn’t want to because I was very shy, but the band convinced me. Until then, I just sang in choirs and studied music, but I had never thought about joining a band. My “metal” career started by chance. I just was a metal fan, but no more than that. Back then I was singing in a rock band and then a metal band called me to record some choirs. They liked the result and asked me to join the band as main singer. This was my first contact with a metal band as a singer. After this I started to compose songs and then decided to found my own band and that’s how Diabulus in Musica was born.

When did it become a revelation that you can do this and maybe get paid for having fun, instead of just putting out all the money?
-I try to live on music but not precisely on the band. I work as a session singer and as a teacher. The little amount we get from Diabulus has to be spent again on the following album and on touring if we do so. So we can say that we do this because it’s our passion. On the other hand, I get money when I sing classical music for example. The philosophy in this genre is totally different, nobody will hire you to sing in a concert or an opera and don’t pay you, that’s really weird, but in spite of everything, it happens in a metal band.

When you spend an amount of your life on a band does it ever feel like you have wasted time, that you have fought one too many windmills?
-There are moments of desperation yes, but I’ll never think I have wasted my time, because I have learnt a lot from my band and it’s definitely a very important part of me. I could never live without it. It’s true that sometimes is too much work and sacrifice and when things don’t turn out as you’d like, you feel it’s probably time to give up, but then you receive a message from a fan telling you how much he/she feel towards your music and then you get stronger for a whole new year!

No matter how small or big you were as a band you will leave a legacy behind you. How do you want people to treat this legacy?
-Well, I prefer not to think a lot much about that, it adds an extra pressure while recording! But, I suppose we all want not to be forgot. Anyway, music and technology changes that fast that we can easily become relics! So everything must be valued in its own moment. It sometimes happen that you listen to an album you really liked before and realized how bad the sound is for example, but anyway, you recall everything you lived back then and that gives a value added to music. Music is eternal. That’s what I would love to be for our listeners, the soundtrack for any moment in their lives.

Is digital taking away the mystery of waiting for a new album now that you can upload as soon as you have written a song?
-Not totally. Of course it’s not the same it used to be before, when you had to buy directly the album before knowing if you would love it or not. On the other hand now you can choose. There are plenty of new bands nowadays, so this way you can discover new talents and buy the album if you like that band. A little bit of that mystery still remains.

How important is image in separating you from all the million different styles of metal there is out there?
-We don’t pay that much attention to that. Generally we don’t like to be in disguise just because we play a kind of music. We try to be ourselves inside and outside. I have never liked “uniforms” if you see what I mean. Of course image is important, but the same it is in any other job where you have to be in front of a public. I personally like many different styles and I wouldn’t like to limit my image to something just because that’s metal or whatever. We wouldn’t like to stand out for that, but for our music.

Do you deal in different topics lyrically or do you keep to one, just using different variations?
-I talk about different topics, but there are some that I usually repeat: nature is always very present, psychology and philosophy as well, nowadays social issues and personal feelings are probably on my top. I sometimes use mythology as a metaphor too.

Do you consider yourself a live artist or do you like to spend most of the time secluded in a studio?
-I’m both. I like recording, because you can try many different things (and I must admit I’m a lover of vocal layers!), in fact, I also work as a session singer. I like to try my voice in different styles and of course, I love to write music. I also love performing because music is much more interesting when you get an instant feedback from the audience. That makes the moment of a show so magical! It’s weird, when I’m recording I miss playing so much! And when I’m on tour,
I sometimes miss my computer and mic too.

How much of a touring band are you guys? What memories do you take with you?
-We have experienced a little bit of everything. Touring is plenty of good and not that good moments! I personally prefer to forget the bad ones and keep the positive. We have made some good friends on the road!

What does the future hold?
-We hope to increase our fan base and play as much as we can!! For the moment, the reviews of our new album are being awesome, and we have already confirmed a couple of tours and festivals for this year and the next one, so we are more than happy!

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