VOLAND

You might have read my review of VOLAND’s second EP back in August. Here is the interview. Answering the questions is Rimmon. Anders Ekdahl ©2018

A band name says more than thousand words, or does it? How important is a band name to get people interested in your music?*
– I think it is important. You can immediately tell when a band name is unoriginal or uninspired. I hope in our case people will see “Voland” fitting as we do, being a name taken from Russian literature and considering we have chosen to centre our lyrcs on Russian culture and history.

When I listen to the “Voland 2” EP I get a strong Russian feeling. Am I right and if so what is that all about? -Yes, our lyrics are about Russian history and our latest EP is focused on the October Revolution of 1917. It’s not just about the lyrics, we tried to catch all other possible artistic influences of that time and mix it up with our music, i.e. popular and folk music, poetry and art, in order to give our listeners the feeling of being transported to those years.

What is it like to be in a studio recording your music? What kind of feelings and thoughts race through your heads?
– It’s always great fun and a joy to see your ideas become “real” in the form of actual song. Especially because sometimes things turn out to sound slightly different from what you had in mind, it may happen that you have to improvise new solutions so it’s a dynamic and stimulating process.

Today I get a feeling that the promotion of a band lands a lot on the bands themselves so how does one promote oneself the best possible way in order to reach as many as possible?
-We live in the era of social media, this means that we have great possibilities to promote our music, the trick is that people are over-stimulated and so distracted, one must be skilled in attracting the right audience.

Today we have all these different sub-genres in metal. How important is that you can be tagged in one of these?
-Why isn’t metal enough as a tag? If a band is original just enough, tags are obviously limiting. I guess a tag is necessary to only give a rough idea of what a listener is about to find, it is up to the band to be sufficiently interesting so that a description of sorts will always accompany its genre tag.

What importance is there in being part of local/national/international scene? Does playing in a band make you feel like you are a part of something bigger? I know it does to me knowing that in some slight way I was a part of the Swedish death metal scene in the 90s.
-It feels good to know that a group of like-minded people is trying to promote the same music that you love, as long as we can all refrain from being self-referential and sectarian a scene is all good and welcome.

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?
-We chose the cover in line with the concept of the EP, it is but a quite explicit reference to the work of Russian suprematism and constructivism master El Lissitzky, his style is probably the most graphically representative of the Russian Revolution, we wanted to introduce our listeners to this setting even before hearing the music and I believe a good cover needs to do just that.

How important is having a label to back you up today when you can just release your music on any sort of platform online? With the ability to upload your music as soon as you’ve written it the freedom to create has become greater but are there any negative consequences to music being too readily available to fans now that every Tom, John and Harry can upload their stuff?
-Web freedom has given us access to so much music that today’s challenge is not publishing it, but rather being able to make it noteworthy for a public that is overloaded with stimuli and much distracted by shiny and fleeting things.
We work with labels Xenoglossy Productions and Masked Dead Records (respectively for cassette and mini-CD versions of our works) and they have been of great help with promotion, surely extending our reach to new targets.

What is a gig with you like? What kind of shows do you prefer to play?
-We are duo, a studio project, have been from the start and haven’t yet seriously considered putting together a live line-up.

What lies in the future?
-Not sure yet, but we have learned to never rule out any possibility…

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