WEEPING SILENCE

I don’t know if you remember but I’ve interviewed WEEPING SILENCE once before. And as they have a relatively new album out I wanted to know a bit about that, and other things. Anders Ekdahl ©2016

You have one of these names that tells me that some thought has been involved in the choice. How hard was it to come up with the name?
-Hi Anders, thanks for this interview. Yeah, the name is one of those that get you thinking a little bit. The band was formed nearly twenty years ago, and I joined two years later, in 2000. It was something that the guys who formed the band thought merged the doom ambience with solitude and natural silence.

Could you give us a short introduction to the latest album?
-Sure. ‘Opus IV Oblivion’ was released in October of 2015 on Massacre Records. It is our fourth album, but the first for vocalists Dario and Diane. Personally I think it is our most accomplished work to-date. We wanted to bury ourselves in Gothic-Doom Metal, and I think we managed to do that, and in the process create something that has a distinct Weeping Silence tone to it. The album has nine songs, was recorded at Spine Splitter Studio and mastered by Andy Horn.

What would you say have been the single greatest influence on your sound?
-To boil it down to the single greatest influence might be an impossible task for a band with seven members. I would say, however, the collective fascination with everything that’s classified as gothic art – from pictorial to lyrical to musical – is the anchor for inspiration.

Do you feel that you grow as a band with each new release? In what way do you best notice this?
-I think we evolve as a band, for sure. Then we grow individually, not only in years unfortunately … but also in our understanding of our own musical formation. I think that this can be seen when comparing ‘Opus IV Oblivion’ with a previous album of ours. The album comes after the band had released three records, and also after having played many more shows in Europe, and learning from the process. Personally, I see the new album defining Weeping Silence not only within the genre, but also as a band with a singular personality.

Something I have often wondered about is if you feel that you are part of something bigger and greater when you play in a band, that you are part of a movement sort of?
-That’s a very interesting question, and one I never gave much thought to. Now that you ask, I do feel that I’m part of a broader artistic community. To call it a movement, would be pushing it maybe as I do not have a particular agenda that matches one ‘club’ or another. Weeping Silence is here simply because the members are compatible, and we have a common goal to create something that channels our expression. That anyone wants to hear what we’re doing is humbling and of course fuels our desire to continue doing it.

When you play the sort of music you play I guess you cannot have birds and bees on the cover of your album? What is a great album cover to you?
-So true! For me, the album cover must capture the lyrical and musical feel in a pictorial way. It must also avoid the clichés of our time, which is so subjective of course. I think we captured the lyrical theme on the cover artwork and also gave it that extra edge by throwing in the Maltese connection. How far it strays from being a cliché’ is not for me to say. However, nowadays I’m not into the female-beauty portraiture on covers, so common with bands in Gothic Metal. I prefer the abstract, or the ones with a historical connotation.

What is your opinion on digital versus physical? Is digital killing music?
-I love physical. I have always been one to want to have something in my hands, be it a vinyl or a CD. I own a nice music collection in physical format, and I don’t see myself ever owning a digital one, for now at least. Whether or not digital downloading is killing music is something I don’t know how to answer as yet. I’ve thought about this at length for years, but I think the truth is that the matter is so complex that dishing out a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ would be nothing short of a blanket statement. To illustrate this, I can recount that many fans have discovered Weeping Silence through digital downloading, and I bet that not all were paid downloads! Some came to shows, and this is great. They paid the gig ticket, which helped the band in several ways, both financial and in marketing However, it is also true that today it is hard to sell a CD, especially to people that already own a digital copy, or who are more than happy to listen to our music without ever paying for it. We will never have the best of both worlds, and I doubt we’ll see a big change to the global music industry status quo any time soon. It’s best that we all learn to make the most of the situation, and encourage people to at least pay for the digital copy by appealing to their sense of artist morals. In the meantime, we must be innovative, and think outside the box. We must learn to live or survive in this environment, without being overly righteous. Artists are survivors.

What kind live scene is there for bands like yours?
-The live scene for us is as varied as you can imagine. We’ve played to an enthusiastic crowd that loves Gothic Metal and Gothic-Doom Metal, and we’ve played to crowds that are simply waiting for the next brutal Death Metal band. Ultimately, we love playing live. There is that sense of living the music that you don’t get in the studio. The human element of talking to those who enjoyed it is unbeatable, and whether it’s 1 or 1000, there’s that humility and pride that an artist feels when someone finds a part of himself/herself in our music.

When you play live is it a happening or do you see it more as a party?
-It’s never a party in Gothic-Doom Metal … but I get your question Anders! We are taking live shows very seriously and I think it’s a party after the show when we know we nailed it. We enjoy the live experience, mind you. But I think we’re focusing on the live show and giving the fans what they paid for.

What would you like to see the future bring?
-We want Weeping Silence to grow in the international scene. We are working to be on more festivals, and on more tours, and we want to see the Weeping Silence family to grow as one.
Thank you very much Anders for this very interesting interview. I hope the readers of Battlehelm enjoyed it too. You can follow us and see our next live dates on fb and website. I look forward to seeing you around at a show. Until then, take care and be safe!
www.weepingsilence.com / www.facebook.com/weepingsilence

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