Written by Béa   
Sunday, 03 August 2008 05:36

Hello, I’m Beatrice and you’re doing this interview for Metal Heart webzine. I don’t know if you speak French or not so I prepared this interview in English ;)
Our native speech is Dutch, but since we live in Belgium, we also speak French. So we would have been able to answer your questions.

Would you like to present yourself and your group ?
Panchrysia started 10 years ago, in November 1998. The backbone-members of the band, both me and our drummer Dol, are still in the band today. We created our first 2 demo’s with Jurgen on vocals. Playing more Gothenburg DM-style at first, we gradually turned into more blackish music. This became even more clear when I took over the vocals a few months before the recordings of ‘In Obscure Depths’ in 2002. That year Panchrysia got off for the real start. With a steady line-up, we covered this release by a small tour with Malevolent Creation.
2 years later, our second album ‘Malicious Parasite’ was born, but we regret to have had it released by Soulreaper Records. Anyway, Panchrysia picked up the good track again with the Iconoclasm split-album ‘The Ultimate Crescendo Of Hell’, which floated directly into our latest ‘Deathcult Salvation’. In the meantime we were on a tour with Marduk. And of course we played loads of other live gigs.

What are the musical influences and backgrounds of each members of the group?
Our musical influences are very wide. If I hade to give you a list of all the things Panchrysia-bandmembers listen to, it would be huge. It goes from classic (hard) rock to black & death, crust, punk, hardcore, doom, etc. Let’s say that our drummers’ background lies more into punk/hardcore, which influenced his way of playing our music. More pumping rock ‘n roll to me. Both I and the other guitarplayer grew up with trash, death & black. I think you can hear it in the songs.
You’re from Belgium, is it hard for you to be recognized as a Belgian group or not?
Well, it’s didn’t gave us privileges in one way or another if you mean that. I can only say that coming from Belgium isn’t really a present. We’ve got the feeling we need to work twice as hard to achieve our goals when we compare ourselves to bands coming from the north. But Ok, we learnt to deal with that.
How would you define exactly your black metal? I find it groovy …
Yeah, it was a conscious choice that we had to slow down a bit. It became more and more clear that the atmosphere we wanted to create didn’t fit with the harsh and fast riffing we did before.
What is your creative process?
For ‘Deathcult Salvation’, the inspiration came from making long mountain trips, watching movies as ‘The Mask Of Satan’, reading novels as ‘Heart Of Darkness’ and listening to the more atmospherical sides of Pink Floyd. By the time we were writing the album, I was pretty much into black & white movies (From Mario Bava horror to Bergman’s The Seventh Seal, etc). Those did set my mind for a couple of months. I think it’s the way creative work should be done. Search for atmospheres, feelings you can get into for a longer period of time. It helps you in writing music, lyrics, searching for the right cover art and interludes. It’s a natural mixture.
Even what recordings concern, we created a certain atmosphere. We recorded major part of the album in an old dirty bunker, on cold January winterdays. It surely made our sound.
Our approach of recording also added to the creative process. Drums and bass were recorded a few months before the definitive mixing. Having the drums completed in an early stage gave us the opportunity to finetune the guitarparts. When we headed north in january 2007 to record the guitartracks, vocals and complete the mixing, we were pretty confident and relaxed. You can feel it on the album’s anthmosphere. I’m pretty sure we’ll use the same method next time.

Would you like to talk about the lyrics of the songs, I found them much dark?
Yes, they might indeed be darker compared to our previous ones. I mainly write about topics as the free will and all ‘rules’ that are imposed on us to undermine that free will, the power of the inner strength (or weakness) and - as Nietzsche would call it - about devaluation of all values. I work around these themes, every time from a different angle. As an inspiration, I’m lead by books as the bible, novels as The Praise of Folly and Heart Of Darkness, poetry, Nietzsche’s work, and more classic works as for example John Milton’s Paradise Lost. En plus, I’ve got a whole of philosophical background stuff from my time at university.
What do you find in the black metal style that you don’t find in the other metal styles?
Aggression combined with atmosphere. In terms of lyrics: the emphasis on a strong individuality.
What are your plans for the future? Gigs?
At the moment we’re working on different new songs. And for what I can hear now, it will be a bit different again. Even in this early stage, I can hear the progression we made since ‘Deathcult Salvation’. Next thing we also strive for is a tour to conquer Europe. We still want to grow and get stronger.
What do you think of the metal scene in general and the Belgian one in particular?
About our Black Metal scene. I don’t think we can speak of a bloodbrother-wise bound together scene. There’s a large group of individuals and bands working each in their direction. Some have close connections, some hate each other. As for Panchrysia, we don’t care much, cause we never were a part of any scene. That’s what makes us stronger!
The metal scene in general? I can only say that we hope to be added to that small list of Black Metal acts that made something worthwhile, that truly added something to the genre.
The word of the end is for you, what would you like to add?
Well, let’s conclude with an excerpt out of Nietzsche’s book ‘The Antichrist’, which has been written in de 19th century, but many of his ideas are even more appropriate today.
“Life itself appears to me as an instinct for growth, for survival, for the accumulation of forces, for power: whenever the will to power fails there is disaster. My contention is that all the highest values of humanity have been emptied of this will--that the values of decadence, of nihilism, now prevail under the holiest names.”

Thanks for this interview and have a good day.



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