STALKER is metal. That’s it. You don’t need to know anything else. Anders Ekdahl ©2017
What fascinates me is how you can still come up with new combinations of chords to make new songs and sounds that have not been heard before. What is it that fascinates you into coming up with new songs and albums?
Chris: haha good question. As this is always on my mind when writing. I think its a combination of things. Knowing what type and style of riffs are out there and knowing what you like and hopefully/usually the rest comes naturally. The way i write is when i hear that riff that really does it for me, then i know i have something good going on. Usually all the bands have there own style and with working with Daif on riffs we can come up with something unique as there is 2 of us writing.
How is this new recording different from the previous? How do you take your sound one step further?
Chris: i don’t want to sound Cliche but it is an extension of our demo. The demo songs are rerecorded on there plus the new tracks. A Lot of the new tracks we started at the same time so should have the same style. It was cool to do the demo songs again with different production, same kinda vibe but better. How do we take it 1 step further? I would say ….
When you write songs about the topics you do what kind of reactions do you get? How important is it to have a message in your lyrics? What kind of topics do each song deal with? Is there a red thread to the songs?
Daif: What other reaction is there other than FUCK YEAH. It can be fairly easy to allude to greater depth, broader references when it comes to lyrics. I’m not gonna take your fine readers for dumber than they look. We all know the power of killer riffs and lyrics that can shoot right into the brain and resonate around in there. Stalker drag the listener into the irradiated wastelands by the ankles. We subject you to unspeakable horrors brought about by demons and the few remaining madmen that wander this sick and poisoned soil.
Whenever I think of you I cannot help wandering off to different bands. What bands/sounds do you identify with?
Chris: (early) Slayer, Razor, Exciter
Daif: Yeah we have early-mid 80s speed/thrash on high rotate. Seems to ALWAYS be the right time to listen it. Go figure.
How did you go about choosing artwork for this new album? What was important to have in it?
Chris: we started discussing the album art a while ago. We were just throwing around ideas of what kind of vibe/style we wanted. So much cool album art out there, you want a lot of things !! We ended up going for the classic painting style after find an incredible artist Matt Stikker. It became obvious fairly early on that he was going to create something that conveys what the music could be like.
Something that scares me a bit is this I hear from more and more bands that they aren’t that bothered with artwork anymore because people today download rather than buy physical. To me the whole point is to have artwork that matches the music. I don’t know how many times I’ve been disappointed by weak art work to an otherwise cool album. What’s your opinion on this subject?
Chris: haha i was just answering this in the previous question. I totally agree. I think the artwork is just as important as the music. I mean, it’s the first thing you see usually. And if a album has sick artwork i want to check it out. I think it’s very important to have the artwork represent your music. It’s hard as you also have to work with someone else to achieve this. I remember buying Exciter Violence and Force based ONLY on the artwork. We were in a record shop one day a heavy metal one that used to be here in Lower Hutt new zealand, and my friend picked it up and was like FUCK. Chris chris you have to buy this just look at it. And we were laughing at it coz it was so good, anyway, brought it took it home and put it on blast and was the best thing i heard. Still to this day its one of my favourites.
Daif: To be honest, I won’t listen to an album of any genre if i KNOW the album art is bad. That said, I don’t give two shits for Slayer’s Raining Blood cover art, but I heard it a long time before i saw the cover. And duh, that album is a fucking all time classic.. so. Also, this makes record shopping harder for me maybe. Also though, I now have so many terrible, terrible albums that LOOK cool hahahahahaha.
How do you come up with song titles? What do they have to have to fit the songs?
Daif: The song title is kinda the capstone of it all. Its has to portray what the song is about and the feel that its gonna give you before you listen to it. Really it’s there to sum it all up. We will often work with the idea that a chorus has has the same purpose, so one will mirror the other. Also it needs to be easy to remember for the maniacs out there AND us. Your setlist needs to tell ya what to play next, not be a wikipedia page. So to-the-point is the smartest way me thinks.
I use Spotify and Deezer but only as complement 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?
Chris: In my experience if you have music that people like in the heavy metal scene (especially the old style) then the fans buy it. They keep the physical scene alive very much. So i don’t think there is any worry there. The die hards are there in all the old metal scenes. Young and old. So i think that physical media scene is very healthy. What worries me as a band? Shit. I heard touring in Europe is hard for new smaller bands. So hopefully people keep local shows alive. Here in New Zealand (being so far away), when a band does come here, depending on who they are, people go crazy for a good show!
How much of a live band are you? How important is playing live?
Chris: we have only played a handful of shows, NZ isn’t very big to play many shows. However this is something that we fucken love and hope to do more and want to do it in as many places in the world as possible. So very important to us.
What lies in the future?
Chris: more writing and shows !!!
Daif: Shredding your town to pieces