Seven Gates of Hell with GAMBANTEINN

31. srpna 2015 v 17:13 | RaznAgul |  seven gates of hell interviews
The aim of the open series of the blogzine´s Seven Gates of Hell interviews is to introduce the bands and their music that struck my metalhead´s heart and soul recently. In seven questions, the gates are open for those who make their music of true metal spirit, pure dedication and of what I understand as underground approach and aesthetics.
Today, the gates open for the Finnish darkened act GAMBANTEINN. After four years of its existence came its perpetrator Þjazi with the first blow wrapped in the EP "Nielevä pimeys". Understanding his personal attitudes towards interviews, I take the following talk with him as a great honour.
The five-track tape EP "Nielevä pimeys" opening the chapter of the Finnish act GAMBANTEINN to the world is another fresh formula anyone of the picky underground manners would like to have in their damn music collection. Searching for a promising load of proper darkness of the day, you don't have to go further. The recording has enough of everything to occupy your mind for a prolonged time of your black metal listenings. Þjazi´s music gets stuck into your skin and soul with addictive side effects long before you learn how to pronounce the band's name. Fresh in its hard-line sound, inventive within its well-beaten territory and catchy despite its beasty roughness. My blind choice out of the scenic depth turned out to be a hell of a bargain. I do not understand why Þjazi screwed a bunch of new stuff composed in the same vein last winter, based on an argument of the lack of musical progress, as he disclosed on his facebook profile a while ago. I would definitely do with much more of the kind!

I. Are you still convinced that you did right when you threw to the scrap heap your last December's promise of some new material being ready soon?
"I am perfectly convinced it was the right thing to do. The material I am now dealing with is far more superior than the songs I had earlier. I think that one should never settle with something they are not totally happy and satisfied with. Especially when we are talking about true metal, there is no room for compromises in any way. When I am composing new music I work with a song as long as every single part of it is top quality. If the song won't do any good after certain amount of effort it deserves its place only in the recycling bin. Naturally, this is also the way when writing the lyrics."

II. Do you really believe that compositional innovation and musical progress are values of themselves, do not kill black metal down-to-earth essence and go well together withGAMBANTEINN's "deep darkness" nature of "Nielevä pimeys"?
"Maybe innovation and progress should become values when you are composing the same damn song every time? Well, I don't think they should be values per se, or the main focus when crafting any kinds of art. When you are too aware about your doings you lose your natural way of "accidentally" or unconsciously creating something new. But why limit yourself by force if progression is the thing you are looking for? Personally I am always looking for new ways to express myself and thus repeating myself by making similar music over and over again, is something I do not want to do. When talking about Black Metal in general, its origin and source is in Chaos, death and darkness, which do not have any limits or do not bow before any laws or restrictions. As one understands this, one should also understand that there are no limits how Black Metal should sound like, meaning that there is no way innovation or progress could kill its essence. Or do you think that bands like Deathspell Omega or Svartidauði are somehow less Black Metal just because their music is far more evolved than the music of your average "Black Metal" bands has to offer? True Black Metal is the echo of constantly changing and revolting Chaos, and thus a form of art never to be tamed."


III. Did you ever contemplate about turning GAMBANTEINN into a full-fledged band with other musicians contributing with their ideas to your music base? That might move your work further, while retaining those characteristic imprints you defined your sound with on your EP. Or do you feel better as a solo actor?
"At the moment the thought is to remain as a solo act. As GAMBANTEINN exists to serve a certain purpose (to sound as black gospel of Urkaos-Ginnungagap and its vast manifestations) the only way there could be any other member besides me, the one must share the same views and thoughts as me. As I do not know a single soul fulfilling my requirements, it is not possible for GAMBANTEINN to act as a full band. Of course one could say that I could get to know new people, but that is something I do not care about, or feel comfortable with as 99,999 % of people are stupid and ignorant sheep. The other point is that I do not really need other members as I can handle all the instruments I need by myself. Well, I am not that good as guitarist but I can get some help when needed, like at the time I was recording "Nielevä Pimeys" I got some assistance by J.R. with the guitars. Also, I am not that eager to play with multiple full-fledged bands as I love to work alone. One or two groups is more than enough and currently I am already involved in Sepulchral Curse, so... Couple of times I have thought if I should have "just" a live-group for GAMBANTEINN. Then it would be enough if the live-members would just understand my work and they wouldn't necessarily need to have the same spiritual views as me. These members would act as a toolbox, but not as composing artists. At the moment playing live is not relevant, but surely something to reconsider when there is more releases in the discography of GAMBANTEINN. We will see what happens in the future..."

IV. What I really like about your EP are its very strong guitar riffs and gimmicks, theway they can build up on trodding havoc as well as gentle feelings. The strings are so pulling that sometimes they even overshadow the rest. Would you yourself consider your music more instrument-driven rather than atmosphere- or theme-driven?
"I don't actually feel or think that my music is any-kind-of-driven especially. But if I must use the terms given here, I would say GAMBANTEINN is all of these; there is a certain theme in the songs, surely they are instrument-oriented, and there is a certain menacing and wrathful atmosphere. I understand that one could see my music as instrument-driven, as they are based on the "basic" instruments in metal music. But, if you pay attention and truly listen to the songs, there are elements and/or parts with more certain atmosphere; like the beginning of "Awakening Giants", or the ending of "Nielevä Pimeys". Now that I am thinking of it, I must admit that it has some effect which instrument I am using when composing new music. It is in a way pretty obvious that if one makes a song with an acoustic guitar, the outcome might be more atmospheric than the song made with an electric guitar or bass guitar. Still, I do not spend my time thinking these kinds of things. I leave that to the listener."

V. The artwork of "Nielevä pimeys" looks like some kind of self-mockery. As if you wanted to say: "Here you have a load of music. If you are just interested in some trve kvlt metal artwork for your lousy t-shirt, go fuck yourself!" But what the hell should the childish scribble disclose about GAMBANTEINN and its very first recording?
"The cover is the visual representation of the audio side of "Nielevä Pimeys". It gives you hints what you are about to hear; something dark, obscure, primitive and terrible. I am more than aware that the artwork is simple, even artless and modest, but it was something that I wanted. Couple of people asked same kinds of questions from me considering the artwork and told me that they do not like it. Honestly, I do not give a single fuck if somebody won't fancy my work and art, was it the artwork or some specific song."


VI. You put out your EP just on tape in a limited edition of 200 pieces. The format as well as the number do not testify to efforts to really promote the stuff the way it deserves. Do you want to keep low profile with GAMBANTEINN and hope that the recording will reach just the dedicated few?
"First of all, I prefer tape and vinyl over CD, so it was very easy decision to make which format to release "Nielevä Pimeys" on. For me CD is a soulless and boring format, a piece of plastic one could throw away anytime without hesitation. I have made several CD-releases with other bands during the years and I have noticed that CD is something people buy just for the sake of "supporting" the band. Somehow tapes and vinyls are something people would buy only when they really want to listen to the music. I do not want that my music is just something that collects dust in the corner of your living room. Of course if some label would like to release GAMBANTEINN on CD, it wouldn't cost anything for me and the artwork would be supreme I could reconsider this, hah! But, I would still like to make a tape or vinyl version. About the limitation of "Nielevä Pimeys"; at the moment GAMBANTEINN is such an unknown act that it would be pointless to make a bigger pressing. When the current batch has sold out and if people show some interest to still buy it, re-releasing is always an option. There is no point in limiting the availability of your music just because you want to be "fucking cult". It is just another way to admit that your music is so awful you don't want people to actually hear it. It would be the same, if you crafted a highly potent poison, but you only killed like ten people with it. Just pour it into drinking water systems and annihilate a whole city!"

VII. A couple of months ago you said "no new GAMBANTEINN this year". What are you heading for with your band now and when can we expect some audible and tangible trace of it? Is a debut full-length your landmark?
"Some new spells and incantations are cast in the form of fresh material during this summer. The plan is to compose a few pieces more and unleash them as an EP. If all goes well this new release might be ready in the end of 2016. But, you never know what happens. And where am I heading?Towardstotal fucking ruination! Towards Ragnarök!"
 

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