The past few years have been a great time to be a metalhead in India. Starting with Iron Maiden in 2007 to Dark Tranquility, Textures and Skindred last year, some of the biggest names in metal have performed in the country recently.
This weekend will see Norwegian death metal band Obliteration headline the first edition of the The Inferno metal festival India organized by Rock Street Journal along with Concert Norway. Their latest album Black Death Horizon has been described by Fenriz (from Norwegian black metal band Darkthrone) as “A brand new old organic sounding death metal masterpiece.”
I spoke to their frontman Sindre Solem about the first gig in India and also about the recently released album ‘Black Death Horizon‘. Read my interview with Sindre below
“It feels great. I have never been to that part of the world before, and I’m very excited to see and feel India,” Sindre Solem frontman of Obliteration told us. “I’ve heard from other Norwegian bands that have played there that it is extremely cool and insane, so we can’t wait to take part in the madness.” The quartet from Kolbotn, Norway also features Arlid Myren Torp on guitars, Didrik Telle on bass and Kristian Valbo on drums. “The album (Black Death Horizon) is a very organic album, it’s raw, dark and gloomy,” said Sindre about the band’s November 2013 release. “When we wrote the album, we tried to focus on the atmospheres in the lyrics and create different moods and atmospheres with the riffs, we tried to NOT be inspired by a certain band, etc. I think this album is much more vile and uncontrollable than anything we have done before, and the energies that are circulation within the music really comes forth. Dirge Rep (Orcustus, ex-Enslaved, Nettlecarrier) wrote the lyrics for the song ‘Sepulchral Rites’ and Afgrundsprofet from One Tail One Head does some guest vocals on the ‘Goat Skull Crown’ track.”
There’s a glaring four-year gap between Black Death Machine and the last Obliteration record Nekropsalms. “It took a while, but the first period when we tried to write the record, the feeling within the band wasn’t that good, we were not that inspired,” explained Sindre of the lull between albums. “We had spent 2010 and parts of 2011 on playing a lot live with Obliteration, so I guess we needed a break. Arild and I started to write the Nekromantheon album, Rise, Vulcan Spectre and Kristian joined AURA NOIR. So we were busy on other projects for a while. But sometime in 2012, we got the energy, atmosphere and will to create something good with Obliteration again, so it did not take THAT long time when we first got into the right mindset and had the inspiration there.”
Black Death Horizon was recorded at the band’s own studio KickArse Studio. On their approach to recording their music, “Well, we have done two Obliteration albums and two Nekromantheon albums there now, plus some splits, bonus tracks, etc. The process is pretty similar to the last times, we just record fast, and with no tricks or bullshit.” Sindre continues, “We just mic up the amps and drums and tune them to make them sound as good as possible. We try to use as few takes as possible to keep the raw and spontaneous feeling. Doing it like this keeps the recordings alive and dynamic in my opinion. We recorded the album in a week, and mixed it in different sessions in the weeks after. Fast and deadly. We are mixing and recording ourselves also, so we are 100 percent in control of our product.”
Sindre and Arlid Myren Torp are also part of thrash metal band Nekromantheon who will play alongside Obliteration at the the Inferno Metal Festival in India this weekend. Post their performance in India, Obliteration will be touring USA in March which includes a performance at Relapse Records’ showcase at SXSW. “We will focus on festivals and also start to write a new Nekromantheon album, so who knows,” says Sindre.
Listen to the title track off Black Death Horizon below