partner: Infernus (guitars)
Questions by: Twilightheart
Time: March 18, 2009
following information was recently spread by gorgoroth.info: "Oslo City
District Court has today delivered a verdict on the main question in the
Gorgoroth trademark case, which took place at the end of January 2009. The court
has decided that King ov Hell's trademark registration ... of the band name
Gorgoroth is NOT valid and shall therefore be deleted. The court states that
King ov Hell and Gaahl excluded themselves from the band Gorgoroth when they
tried to fire Infernus in October 2007. The court further states that Infernus
cannot be excluded from Gorgoroth, unless he himself decides to quit...."
This was a sufficient reason to ask for another interview with Infernus. Here we go:
the name rights for Gorgoroth seem to be clarified. How does it feel?
It feels as it is - a great relief indeed. Finally I can get to focus on the more constructive and creative aspects of my life, spending more time in studio and rehearsing, letting the last year and a half with legal matters and stress go. I am hell bent for some real metal now. It does of course feel great!
Did Regain or anyone support you with the legal stuff, or were you doing this on your own with your lawyers?
I was hiring in help myself, but Regain had a lot of back-up to offer. Without them, I would for sure not have had the time nor the energy to do all that I have been doing in parallel to the legal matters, for example replacing the basslines and finishing the work on the live-in-studio album, "True Norwegian Black Metal - live in Grieghallen studio", or getting to put together my new line-up, rehearsing and starting on the work for the upcoming album.
You have revealed the new line-up for Gorgoroth a short time ago. How did you find Tomas Asklund? I never heared about him again after his time with Dissection. Did you ask him to join, or was it him coming to you?
I had that guy in mind for years, believe me. It was me who came to him. I spent some time on taking the decision - a week or so? - and I picked from the uppermost assortment of musicians all according to what I felt comfortable with. I got a straight yes immediately, both from him, and from the other guys. We are more or less tuned in on the same goals, and I do not think it will be too difficult relating to them in terms of reaching what we at the moment are aiming at. The focus now is on creating something outstanding, a classic of a studio album. This is something we now give a 100% priority, and it is something we will not let anything compromise. nothing!
Even more interesting about the bass: why does it have to be someone from the states? Of course Frank is surely a great musicians, but won't things get complicated when it comes to rehearsing and live gigs next year? Will you have Frank flying in each time?
It had to be Frank, because I really wanted to work with him. Easy as that. Of course, the logistics is a fact we do need to take into consideration, but then again: we are supposed to be grown up and more or less professional now. That means including being able to set up a decent time table together, and being able to follow that. And it’s rather modern times we live in now as well, making it possible for us in terms of both technology and cheap flight tickets to get things to work out for the best. I didn't pick a bass player out of practical concerns. I picked a bass player I want to work with!
Pest will be back on vocals. Please tell how you managed to get him back! Is he looking forward to return? Where has he been in the past? Some people might think that it was you who fired him back in time. Please clarify!
I never fired him. He had to let go in order to focus on some other issues, but we more or less stayed in touch all this time. He is now angry as hell, and on his way back to the studio again. I am really exited about that, even though that should not be necessary for me to say.
there other applicants for the jobs (especially the vocals), that you had to
call off? How difficult was it to find musicians who have the right attitude to
join a band like this?
We had applicants for doing all the instruments and vocals. people have been pushing on me even after the new line-up was made public. I am happy about that, and interpret that as a good thing. But a choice has now been made, and I got the guys I wanted to work with together. Without too much stress, really.
Why did you not take over the vocals yourself?
Because I wanted Pest to do the vocals. I have done vocals a few times in studio myself, and that has been fun, and I am also being able to do bass etc., but anyway - what I enjoy most is to be a guitarist and a composer. Secondly, I intend on coming back on the road in not too long, and in such a situation, I would not be ready or willing to do vocals myself.
Was the title "Quantos possund ad Satanitatem trahunt" your own idea, or was it any member of the artists formerly known as The False Gorgoroth, as the fans called them lately?
It was actually Adam of Bremen’s. But I ran to the Norwegian Office of
Industrial Property and trademark-protected it. Secretly, of course. Whether
that was right or wrong, I guess perhaps again time will tell.
Anyway, how did this betrayal of King and Gaahl feel like? No matter what happenend in the band in the past, did you ever expect them to be so honorless to just kick you out of the band you founded? (I believe everyone, even those who might like Gaahl and King's music better, probably agree to the fact that they would have been better off with starting their own band with a new name. It would have been better for their reputation and they wouldn't be called traitors that often, at least.)
To try to kick me out of the band I founded, you mean? It was a bit surprising, I must admit. I can at times be a bit naive believing people to have better qualities than they actually have, but this, I must say, really came as a bit of a surprise. Then again, who would expect such an attempt coming? Trying to register a trademark which has already been established by use by others, then going public with some hopeless legitimizations based on how a bad guy I am? Come on!
King ov Hell had already left the band once. Why did you take him back? Was it Gaahl that convinced you to let him join the band again?
I have to take full responsibility for actually wanting him not to leave, and also for wanting him back. In retrospect, it can appear pretty weird, I admit, but that is the truth. Or the sad fact, all depending on how you look at it.
Your fans are wondering why you ever let King write the music. His music is not as raw and satanic as the one you wrote in the beginning. Had no one of the other band members any song writing qualities?
He had his qualities. And that's why I took him into the band in the first place. I always defended him, and it would not be appropriate to pretend anything else now. I liked the music he came up with, and given the historical perspective of the band - that I was never really concerned about having to write all and everything of the material myself - as long as the end result was good and I could stand behind it, I did not - and still do not - care who writes the music.
What was the reason for your unproductive period? Do you wanna talk about it?
It does perhaps not have a specific reason. To say "lack of spirit or inspiration" - what does that actually mean? I mean, as an artist, with a certain perspective on things, one should know one's limitiations. That means to me something like: deliver quality, not quantity. Stand behind what you do all the time. I now have written material for one and a half new albums, material which I am entirely happy with right now, but who knows what the future brings. I am going to be around forever. That is more likely than I will start delivering something half-hearted. This is how it has to be.
What has changed to bring you back to productivity?
That is a mystery to me as well. At least nothing hocus pocus in relation to the split-up. Most likely there were many different reasons. Including some x-factors unknown even to me. But again, definitely, a short stay in low security prison helped a lot as well, in terms of getting the isolation and focus needed to get in touch with the nerve which should be among the driving forces behind real Black Metal.
Are you maybe even more productive now that you have the inspiration (and probably enough wrath in your stomach) to deliver a great album, as everyone in the Metal Szene will pay much attention to your next output.
I always had a great deal of wrath in my stomach. I doubt you have to be a Sigmund Freud to be able to understand that. I am productive feeding on the fires of hell today, as yesterday, and I am aware of the attention given, which I somehow must admit I find flattering. But again, I write to please myself, to use another grossly misused and abused term, and not first and foremost to please others. Whether I do please others simultaneously, I take as a bonus, yeah! It's my way or no way!
your ex-band-members complained to the media, how difficult you are, treating
business partners respectlessly. I personally cannot complain, as the previous
interview with you was the most relaxed I ever did. Do you yourself think
they are right about this particular accuse? Or is it just that they are not
hard enough in taking (or swallowed too much shit from the business partners)?
Hey, I do remember that interview, at PartySan a couple of years ago, right. It went all smooth and without problems, yeah! But insofar there is some truth to what they claim or not, the big question is still: so what? I openly admit I can be difficult to work with, that I want things to be done my way. Then again, they knew this all the time, and they should have chosen according to that earlier on and just quit if things became too difficult for them to handle. They could have quit and started a band on their own. Like I did when I started Gorgoroth in 1992.
Will there be a new Gogoroth tour right after the album release? I mean, will it be a gigantic tour to establish the new band, or will you concentrate on a few festival appearances only?
I am primarily, as history shows, very fond of being on the road. As long as the apparatus around us is functioning in a proper way. I am really keen on getting back as soon as possible. But I also have a clear view that we shall now be able to do it 100% or not do it at all. It's time for the real deal now.
Will you give instructions to the new band members of how to appear on stage (like using corpse paint as a must) or do you leave the decision to them? Will they have to use artists names (like f.i. Tomas in the past was Alzazmon). Or are the real names just as good?
I believe it will not be a big demand on teaching them to do their job, as they are all grown up and have been around in the scene for as long as most of us can remember, all of them.
What kind of Satanism do you follow or study? How intensly do you practise it?
I have a Gnostic Satanic understanding of my being in the world. I am a religiously devoted Satanist. This means I have a concept of God transcending every thought I think and every feeling I feel. In everyday life as well as in the function I have in the music business and the so-called "Black Metal scene". To me Satanism represents a striving towards complete goodness and freedom. Some may understand it, others not.
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