KHASM

KHASM is a really cool French band that deserves your attention. Anders Ekdahl ©2018

Do you notice that there is an anticipation for you to release an album? Have you built a large enough following for people to eagerly await a new album?
-Absolutely, as soon we released our EP back in 2016, people were asking for more ! This first effort was only 12 minutes long, and we have read in reviews and in social medias, that is was too short, that they wanted more as soon as possible. So making a full LP was, in any case, expected. In the meantime, we put some news periodically on our Facebook page to give some news about the band and the making of this new LP.

Is it important for you that a new album picks up where the previous left off? How important is continuity??
-Not necessarily. When I wrote some new stuff, I never think about what has been done before. But in a certain way, there is always some kind of continuity. I still write “metal” !! Haha !! No seriously, the new songs constitute the logical next step for me. I always wanted to sound more aggressive and massive, so “Trinity” represents me as I am now.

Was it hard for you to come up with a sound for this album that you all could agree on?
-No, It was very flawless to find our actual sound. When Kevin Talley has finished his drums parts, the songs have become so intense and heavy that the result was perfect without changing a lot in my equipment or my settings. Besides, Ronnie Björnström did an awesome job on the mixing and mastering to glorify the whole thing.

How important are the lyrics to you? What kind of topics do you deal with?
It’s our singer Christophe, who’s in charge of the lyrics. We both like comic books and “dark” mythologies and that’s the main themes of the album. “Shadows” speaks about Bruce Wayne becoming the Batman and “Deathstroke” about the self-named DC Comics character for example.
These themes are not so often used in the metal music, but I think they fit very well. We should not compare them to actual movies, such Avengers, Thor, etc… These are more mainstream ! Christophe like to go deeper in the dark side of the characters or the stories and that fits with our music. We don’t especially like to speak about what happens in our world today, nevertheless with the track called “Dedication”, we wanted to give our felling about our personal experience in the past two years when many of “old friends” believed that the band was dead when we lost our bassist in 2016 and our drummer in 2017. It’s a kind of thumbing its nose to all those people.

How important is the cover art work for you? How much do you decide in choosing art work?
-I really wanted to have a great artwork. This time I worked with a French friend who owns Razorimages.com. His work is just awesome and I gave him free mind to draw something great. The only thing I told him his that the “Fenris” wolf had to be on it. The artwork is, in my opinion, really important. I am a bit “old school”, and not only by my age !! Haha !! The cover is the first thing that you see from an album. When it doesn’t “speak” something to me, I’m always a bit hesitating. But I don’t say I won’t listen to the music, of course, but It counts for the first impression.

How important is having a label to back you up today when you can just release your music on any sort of platform online? Are there any negative consequences to music being too readily available to fans?
-Having a label is a big difference for me. They have more possibilities to promote a band around the world and not only through online platforms. Doing that alone
is a lot of hard work. Finding the maximum of contacts (webzine, paper magazine, web radio…) is difficult. Personally, I don’t have that time. I’m not living from my music. So the opportunity to be signed by a label is undoubtedly an advantage for us. Concerning being too readily available, I don’t see something too bad about it. It’s maybe not perfect that way but we can’t go against it.

I guess that today’s music climate makes it harder for a band to sell mega platinum. How do you tackle the fact that downloading has changed how people consume music?
-It’s not easy, for sure. But the most important is to be able to play the music we love. And going on stage is a big part of this satisfaction. We haven’t record this album to make a lot of money. If we can share our music with the fans we will be happy ! And if you look at the music industry, you could see that the selling of Vinyl are growing for example. I really think it’s a sign that people are slowly realizing that it’s something great to have something “physical” in their hands.

Does nationality matter today when it comes to breaking big. Does nationality play a part in if or not you will make it big internationally?
I don’t think so. I mean, just look around, there are many band coming from every part of the world. When the music is good, no matter where you come from. Ok that’s a personal thought but I’m pretty sure I’m right! Maybe the only thing for French band like us, is to be able to speak and/or understand English. Not necessarily perfectly but to be able to communicate easily. I’ve spoked a few month ago with a friend who worked with some well-knownFrench band, but because of their very poor English, they have difficulties to export themselves.

I use Spotify and Deezer but only as compliment to buying CDS (it’s easier to just have your phone or pad when you’re out) but I fear that soon music as we know it will be dead and buried. What are your worries as a band?
That’s a big question! As I said before, the whole society has changed, people uses new technologies to listen to music. But, I deeply believe that there still will
be a part of “physical” support beside all the digital stuff. Something that’s scares me more is that the local concert are a bit abandoned. Less people are going out to see their favorite band. We must support them “live” not only through their music “at home”. In these days going on tour or playing gigs is as crucial for band as selling CDs.

What does the future hold for you?
-Something big I hope, haha !! No, If we can play our music on stage, it will be already awesome. Of course, if many people will like the new album that would be greater. But by now, we’re already very proud of our little “baby” and that’s means a lot for us.

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