With so many cool bands out there to check out I offer you some minor guidance by introducing you to OPPROBRIUM. Anders Ekdahl ©2018
What is it that have made you wanting to release a new album in 2019? When you started as INCUBUS all those years ago did you ever think that you’d still be doing this in 2019?
(Francis) So that our newer fans might know, we used to be called Incubus but we are now called OPPROBRIUM for 20 yrs now. Well, I guess we had some what of an Idea. We just kept going because it’s what we do best in a way. Music is in my blood. It’s part of me. The love for the music is what keeps me going. We feel we are only starting.
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?
(Francis) Good question. As a band, we want the fans to enjoy our music. As far as what the band is about, well, we are what we are, musicians just making music. As for what I want with my music, Well I just want to make great music.
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?
(Francis) Well I’ve never noticed that myself. So I wouldn’t know.
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?
(Francis) Well the only way is to keep going and keep on writing good music. I guess the fans can tell because they enjoy the music. The fans can be sure that Opprobrium will always do our best to write the best songs possible and albums for them (the fans), and that the band will continue to do what this band set out to do since 1986, which is to create powerful Death/Thrash music, with the Opprobrium style signature.
What is the biggest challenge in the creation of an album? How do you write the really cool songs?
(Francis) The biggest challenge would be everything from the song writing procedure to the mixing of the album. Well, on how I write an album, I just let my full music potential flow as I am writing a song in order to express a great song so that people can enjoy.
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?
(Francis) Yes, of course, back in the 1980’s and early 1990’s there was only analog back then, ‘Serpent Temptation’ (1988) and ‘Beyond The Unknown’ (1990) were recorded in analog. Analog has a full bodied sound, but the digital recording technology has improved a lot nowadays ever since, so recording nowadays in digital sounds great too.
I think it’s an matter of taste in a way. I would use analog or digital. For me I like to experience both realities. As many already know, we did record “Serpent Temptation” and Beyond The Unknown” in analog, since back then there was no digital recording. But do keep in mind there are now digital analog software that sounds really great out there. Nowadays there is so many good option when it comes to recording, that I strongly feel that it’s a great time to be a musician when it comes to music instruments, recording, etc, lots of sounds options and recording instruments, sound options.
What is it like to sit there with a finished album? Do you think much what people will think of it?
(Francis) Many thoughts go through our minds. But as we sit back and listen to an overall record that is finally mixed and mastered. The only thing we can do is tap in our shoulder for all the hard work that we went through and hope that the fans will like the songs. I don’t care how much advertisement or how much a label does to promote an album, in the end, the fans are the ones that decides the success of an album. Even though I play in a band I am a fan myself, so in a way I can see this from both sides. The underground metal scene are really enjoying “The Fallen Entities” and we are really happy that the fans are enjoying the album.
How important are the lyrics and what message do you want to purvey?
(Francis) I think that the lyrics has to fit the song, you can not throw in any lyrics in to a song. It has to match the rhythm, the tempo changes and the musical vision that the lyrics brings forth so that fans can enjoy the overall song.
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?
(Francis) An art work does help with people buying albums just for the cover it self, because there are many LP collectors out there nowadays. But I think it has to be both, an album has to have good music and a great album cover. But keep in mind that are many albums out there that sounds great and the cover is some what OK. The main foundation for an album has to be the music, that’s for sure.
We are getting great feedback on our album cover, people are enjoying the visual art as well. We are very happy with “The Fallen Entities” album, the music and cover.
When you play live do you notice a degree of greater recognition from the fans with each new time you pass through town?
(Francis) We haven’t play live in awhile. But I think with social media and streaming sites has helped bands gather more crowds when they play live. But yes, I remember that degree of recognition from the fans each time that we played in a town last time that we toured, it is a great energy that we reflect back to them when we are playing live on stage.
What do you see in the future?
(Francis) We can’t wait to play the new material live to the fans, and let God lead the way always. Thank you Battlehelm for having us here, and for the great interview, thanks again and much success! Also a big thank you to all our fans around the world for your support throughout the years! Thank you so much guys! Take care everybody and Metal forever!!