Seven Gates of Hell with IXXI

12. listopadu 2015 v 18:58 | RaznAgul |  seven gates of hell interviews
Today´s venture to the blogzine´s Seven Gates of Hell talk is exceptional in a way. The Swedish black metal number IXXI is about to burst into one of Prague´s underground clubs in order to stage their violent gig there. And the interview gates use this occasion and open for the band, as an invitation for their fans to the event. Even the interviewed IXXI are exceptional, in many ways. Due to their very promising music fortune, great recordings, being struck with death ordeal, falling almost into oblivion and being able to rise again and kindle the black flame in regained strength and glowing. The interview questions were answered by the band´s vocalist Outlaw who gave his voice and shriek to the latest IXXI album "Skulls n Dust".


I. The acronym 9/11 is notorious and in fact defines our world of today. It is very emotional for some, very politicized and may be even controversial in some way. Put in the Roman digits it looks really magic. What does the symbolism of the date have in common with black metal ideology and the band's artistic inclinations?
"You are not the first one to ask about our band´s name and of course with a name like IXXI, people wonder. Some people don´t even see the connection and just play along and some people ask what it means and why? 9/11 represents much more then twin towers that it's, to most, connected with today. I can't fully speak for the founders´ intentions with the name. All is that it has a very loaded and personal meaning for most people so it's provoking, mysterious and fascinating at the same time. What we know is that for every day that passes by our meanings will be more and more obvious to common people. You can behold the numerology of IXXI in many ways, it's sacred and occult, depending on whom you ask. For us, we can both provoke and send our secret messages through the meanings."

II. The band was started by Acerbus (Ondskapt) and Nattdal (Lifelover) as a side project to their already well-established hordes. Their first eponymous album didn't bring forth any kind of not-heard-before music, though, raving with straightforward black beats. What made the two quite exceptional musicians with their very own music styles to start up a band that on their first recording played, sorry to say, just casual music?
"Well, it's your opinion of the music. I'm a very big fan of the first album and would not classify it as "casual black metal", it has very interesting elements and is very original, according to me. But to answer your question, I think Acerbus and Nattdal wanted to do something different from what they did with their other bands. Of course IXXI is something outside the standards of black metal so it was a way for them to broaden their musicality."

III. With the second notch "Assorted Armament" came a miracle! As if the band took a completely new, fresh breath. The album opens with a couple of tracks made in a precise punching metal plant, coming to the turning point with the magnificent Lifelover brand song "In the Name of Nothing". What follows is just one great-riffed piece after another. What do you think made this album such a kind of treasure? And do you still consider it as a pillar of the band's works?
"Apparently "Assorted Armament" is regarded as the band´s acknowledged best work. And it is, without doubt, a very good album. I can't separate any albums and say if they are better or worse. They are all very good in their own way. But then again it's fun that an album gets that much attention."

IV. The next album "Elect Darkness" may not have such outstanding moments like its predecessor, however it also has its undeniable qualities. It is more rascal, deep-soaked in hellish filth and provocatively blasphemic.What prompted the band with almost the same line-up to move that way else in their musical nature?
"Honestly, I don't know. It's your perception, all bands evolve and if they don't they should probably put the band on hold before they start composing again."


V. After the three full-length recordings IXXI staggered. The band's line-up was considerably hit with the departure of the vocalist Totalscorn and one of its co-founders Nattdal (who tragically died later). IXXI was even put on hold for some time then. The resurrection came with the fourth album "Skulls n Dust". What did it retain from the band´s former spirit and how much different is it in its music approach?
"With all the history and line up changes that IXXI had gone through before the recording of "Skulls n Dust" it's not strange that we perhaps, to some, got a different approach to the type of black metal we make. But the concepts are still there and Acerbus is a great composer. For me personally, I was already prepared for some reactions. It's always hard to replace a vocalist and you will always get people who have the posture that the first vocalist always was the best. But that's a natural course, there are many bands that have changed vocalist for the better, both Marduk and Dark Funeral are two good examples. They have both changed many vocalists and today probably they have the best they ever had."

VI. Since "Skulls n Dust" almost two years have passed. Is there something new in the offing?
"At the moment we are trying to perform as much live as possible so that is our first priority and focus. But we are already in the progress of writing new songs, but when we will enter the studio again is to early to say."


VII. Is your forthcoming gig in Prague in November a part of some longer tour or just an individual performance stop? What those who are coming to your show in Prague's Exit-Us can look forward to?
"We are doing the Eastern Europe tour with 9 dates in 9 different countries, so visiting Prague feels great for us! The response had been outstanding for the whole tour even before it started so we are excited and we can promise those who come to the shows that they will have something to talk about the day after. Don't be the person who is in doubt and choose the lazy option and stay home and then ask your friend the day after how the show was, because you will be sorry if you don't show up!"

Thanks for the interview and see you soon on the stage in the Czech Republic!

 

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