EMBERCROW have a name that could be anything from goth to emo. Not that it really matters as long as the music is good. And good it was. So good that I decided to interview them. Anders Ekdahl ©2014
How important is the band name to you? What is a great band name?
-In my opinion, a good band name should fit the style and mood of the music, as well as being catchy and good to visualize in a logo. I think we pretty much achieved that with our name, so we are satisfied with it. On the other hand, it stays but a name, if your music is shitty, a cool name won’t help you, so the music should of course be your main concern, when starting a band :). I personally like a lot of bandnames, especially in the rock- and metal-scene, so it would be easier to give an example for not so great names. For me, that would be most of the modern Metal- of Deathcore bands like “We Came As Romans”. What is that name supposed to tell me?
Just so we know what we are dealing with could you please give us a short introduction to the band?
-It will be a pleasure. Hi, we are Embercrow from Hamburg/Germany and we play melancholic music between rock and metal. The band was originally founded in 2004, but we underwent a lot of line-up changes since then, so I would say, the band in its current form started in 2008. That was the first time we had a stable line-up for a longer time, which worked in a certain stylistic direction. After an EP and a single, the result is our debut-album “Blacklight Wanderers”. We hope you enjoy it!
How do you find your sound? Do you take a whole bunch of influences and mix them together to make it your brew?
-That’s indeed basically how it is. Although it is not a conscious process like “Oh, let’s take that part from band xy and join it together with that part, that sounds like band z”. It’s more like you try to create a certain vibe with the songwriting and the sound you use, that will hopefully fit the finished song. Of course you are always unconsciously influenced by bands you listen to yourself, but that does not bother us, we simply try not to think about it too much.
I guess that most bands go through one or two lineup changes. How do you as a band contain your sound when one member leaves and a new one arrive?
-As I mentioned, we’ve really had our share of line-up changes. Fortunately, the songwriting-core mostly stayed together, thus we have been able to retain our sound quite well. But of course every musician adds his own flavor, which is cool, as long as it fits the basic sound of the band.
How important is playing live today? Is there still a live scene to talk about? Do people still go to shows? To me it seems that it is all big tour packages or festivals that are left.
-I think playing live is still pretty important. If you want to earn money, even more important than in the past maybe. That makes it hard for smaller bands sometimes, because there are so many bands out there touring, that the people cannot attend all the shows. So they tend to go to the bigger ones. This is also one of the reasons for the big tour packages that you mentioned. Nevertheless, there is still a quite vital underground scene with local gigs, at least here in Germany.
How do you best utilize the interest you get on social media to actually have it mean something in real life?
-The social media channels can be quite useful to interact with the fans. It’s probably the quickest way to get news around. This way, you can utilize it to point out your newest shows and invite people to them by creating i.e. a Facebook-event. Or you can give details about your newest release and where to get it. As far as our experience goes, this really helps getting you out there. On the other hand, it clearly has its boundaries. Someone who does not like your music will not care more just because you may have a big virtual following. It is hard enough to get the asses of those who actually do like you moving sometimes.
How pleased are you with your latest recorded work?
-We are satisfied with it, otherwise we would not have released it. This actually happened in the past with our first demo, that was never officially released, because we were not happy with the outcome. Of course, there are always small things that you would like to make better or simply different with a little distance from a recording. But in general, we are quite happy with „Blacklight Wanderers“.
When you work in the studio what kind of process do you go through? Do you come in all prepared or do you improvise?
-We usually are very prepared, when we enter the studio. Apart from maybe a few solos or some small arrangement-details the songs should be finished before we start to record them. This way, we can concentrate more on the sound and the performance. Apart from that, we simply haven’t got the money to pay for a long studio visit, so the quicker we are, the better.
What part would you like the producer to have? How important in is the producer?
-Up to this point, we did rarely work with an external producer, because our drummer is a sound engineer and he records most of our stuff. So it is quite difficult to answer that question regarding an external producer’s role. However, external or internal, the producer is of course very important, because he is the one that is responsible for the sound of the record. And he does not only need the technical skills and the right feeling for the music, but also the social skills to keep everything going, when one of the band members throws a hysterical fit in the studio.
What would you like to see the future bring with it?
-Well, of course we hope that the people like our album and get their hands on it. Moreover, we hope to be able to play live more often, because that is something, that missed out a little in the past. So see you out there and thank you very much for your support!