ANOREXIA NERVOSA – 3 år siden New Obscuratis Order

ANOREXIA NERVOSA – 3 år siden New Obscuratis Order

Som overskriften sier, så gikk det 3 år mellom ANOREXIA NERVOSA slapp gullkornalbumet "New Obscurantis Order" og det hittil siste albumet "Redemption Process". Vår tidligere medarbeider Hans Olav var igjen på tråden med Hreidmarr og her kan du igjen lese dette intervjuet som ble tatt sent i 2004.


Hello Mr Hreidmarr, and once again thank you for another great offering. It has been three years of torture and waiting!

Hello! It`s been a while, that`s true, but you know, "Redemption Process" is actually the album that took us the most time to make. We only release an album when we have something to say. We`re not that kind of band who put out a botched up album every fucking year because that`s it! We toured quite a lot after the release of "New Obscurantis Order", we did a French headlining tour, which was fuckin cool, and we opened for Dark Funeral on the first part of their "Diabolis Interium"
European tour. So when it was over, we took a few rest and began working on this new album. We really wanted everything to be fuckin perfect, so we took the time to work really hard on every details. The main idea behind this record was to make it sound like a "classic".

About the new songs; I think it`s fairly simple to hear that it`s AN playing, the production and sound is almost similar to "New Obscurantis Order". You went to Sweden to get the album mastered this time, didn`t you?

Yes, the album was mastered by Bjørn Engelmann, who has already worked with bands such as Rammstein, In Flames, Hypocrisy, Behemoth. He did a great job, he really understood our music and the way we wanted it to sound. He`s someone really professional. But I don`t agree with you when you say that the production of "Redemption Process" is similar to the one on "New Obscurantis Order". To me, it`s really different, we changed our recording methods this time, we wanted a huge organic and personal production, not a fuckin clinical and stereotyped one. The drums and thebass guitar were recorded live, and we didn`t use any effects nor triggers, we wanted something "pure", something which got class, pretty far from today standards. The sound of the guitar was inspired of the early Entombed-Nihilist albums, you know that very unique sound made with a Marshall JCM 800 and the famous boss heavy-metal pedal… Of course you can hear that it`s Anorexia playing, but the production is really much more better than on our previous albums I guess, and to tell the truth, it`s probably the first time we`re totally satisfied with the production, the first time we really managed to find the perfect balance between the guitars and the orchestrations, and that`s pretty difficult.

"New Obscurantis Order", although an excellent album, was pretty much blastbeats, "bånn pinne", as we say it in Norwegian. This time you have added a bit more mid-tempo influences, which I think is great. Just listen to "Worship Manifesto", one of the album`s greatest songs. You almost sound like Immortal sometimes!

Yeah, there are some riffs in the Immortal vein, right. And also some Bathory-influenced ones. But strangely, you`re the first one to notice them, hehe!!! Though I thought it was pretty obvious… I really like these mid-tempo parts too, you know, it`s something pretty new for us, it`s the first time we write songs like "Worship Manifesto", "The Sacrament" or "Sister September". I love this kind of really powerful, emphatic, martial atmospheres.

"Redemption Process" is a concept album, isn`t it ? Is it about some kind of religion, or what ? Are the lyrics as deep as they were last time?

It`s not really what we can call a "concept album", you don`t need to listen the whole album, each song has its own concept and personality. Anyway, the main idea behind the lyrics is a kinda spiritual and physical quest for Redemption and Absolution, a long hard progress thru this materialistic world, to then reach something else, whatever that is. I believe that you have to touch the bottom of darkness and decadence first, to find then a kinda new path to an elevation of the soul, beyond the mortal frame. We`re building a kinda new religion, in a way, right, our "New Jerusalem" could be seen as the brand new religion of the Western endtimes.

I think it`s almost impossible to mention favorite tracks on "Redemption Process", because they`re all so great, but I must say that "Worship Manifesto" and "The Sacrament" is really outstanding. Got any favorites yourself?

Pretty hard question for me too! I think "The Shining" and "The Sacrament" are my fave ones, I really love their very mystical atmosphere, and they`re the last songs we wrote before entering the studio. But, now that we`ve just begun rehearsing for the upcoming live shows, I`m more into
more simple and direct songs like "Sister September" or "Worship Manifesto", I can tell you they`re going to be fuckin killer live tracks! When my vocal takes for the album were over, I couldn`t bear "Sister September" anymore, you know, cuz I had to record my vocals so many times on this song, Xort was always like "it`s okay, pretty cool, but I`m sure it could be better, let`s do it again", over and over, and I was so fuckin pissed, hehehe… But when we played it on rehearsals, man, I discovered this song again, I really love to play it, it`s undoubtedly going to be my live favorite!

Personally I think that bands like Dimmu Borgir make great music, but it doesn`t last long enough. That`s why I like AN better, you always incorporate hidden elements in your music. Do you put a lot of effort into this?

We don`t really do it on purpose, it`s pretty natural for us, it may come from our classical influences I guess. Of course we pay great attention to all the arrangements, and we worked really hard on this one, we did a lot of pre-production stuff and so on… But basically, we mainly follow our instinct while composing. And we`ve always tried to be as honest as possible, to make sincere music, putting all our fuckin guts into each of our albums, without caring about business shit nor trends, etc. And I think that makes the difference. For us, an album must be a masterpiece or
nothing, something strong and timeless we can be proud of, even ten years after. And not something you listen to two or three times and then it`s over…


Track number 2 is, on my promotional copy called "Antiferno". Is this a spelling mistake, or is that really the name of the track?

No, it`s a spelling mistake on the promo-CD. The real name of this song is "Antinferno", which means in Italian something like "prelude to hell". It`s taken from cult Pasolini`s movie "Salo"…

How much time did you spend on making the lyrics for the new one ? Do you write them in the day or in the night?

Anytime, anywhere, it has no importance to me, anyway, I`m almost always writing… I keep what I think is the best "or sounds the best" for the albums, the rest will probably be used for some kinda novels I`m currently working on. I spent almost two years on the "Redemption Process" lyrics, it has been something pretty difficult, painful and stressful, much more than it was for the previous albums. But I`m really glad of the result. I think it`s even the first time I`m that satisfied
with my lyrics… They are more direct, more simple, maybe more "contemporary", more rooted in real life.

How long did it take to finish the album ? Were there any songs that were extra hard to "get through"?

We spent one year and a half composing and pre-producing the new songs, then we spent two months in the studio. As I already said, and as far as I`m concerned, "Sister September" was my worst nightmare when we were in the studio, hehehe, and then, the recording of "The Sacrament" was also something pretty complicated, because of all the choirs arrangements… Picture the scene: we used something like 45 tracks only for these choirs!

I recently got a CD from from another French band called Latrodectus, and they had recorded and produced their album in your studio, Drudenhaus. Have there been any other bands recording in Drudenhaus?

Yeah, there are more and more French bands who want to record at the Drudenhaus and that`s cool, I hope there will be also some foreign ones soon! So far, we produced bands such as Latrodectus, Olen`K, my side-project Count Nosferatu Kommando, Daemonic Alchemy, Crack ov Dawn, and some others I can`t remember.

I have always been wondering what "Drudenhaus" really means. I know that the word "druden" means pentagram, and that "haus" is house, but what does it stand for?

"Drudenhaus" means something like "house of the sorcerer". It`s the name of a place in Germany which was what we can call a kinda concentration camp for witches, some centuries ago. Thousands of witches were tortured, raped and burned there during the Inquisition. This house was later bought up by famous writer Sacher-Masoch.

"Suicide is Sexy"; what a name that is ! I have tried to get my hands on a copy, but haven`t succeeded yet. Could you tell us a bit about this box?

Fans were asking for a re-release of our demo "Nihil Negativum" for a long time, and we simply thought it was the right time to do it. But we didn`t want to only release the demo and fuck off. So we added a lot of old stuff, like the very rare Necromancia (the ancestor of Anorexia Nervosa) demo "Garden of Delight", for instance. We wanted to release a real, complete anthology of the band`s early days, you know, and keep it pretty underground, with no real distribution and so on; It`s strictly limited to 999 copies.

Is it still your guitar player that makes the most of the music, or has it changed since the last album ? I have always been quite fascinated by that; how you could sound so symphonic when most of the material is made on the guitar!

Hehe, but you known, Stefan can also start writing a song from a keyboard idea. The song is the only thing which is important when writing, we do not focus on guitars or whatever, we focus on the whole thing. And Stefan always writes the basic keyboard lines when he records new songs` demos in his home studio. Anyway, with "Redemption Process", everyone in the band has been much more involved in the making of the songs. Stefan remains of course the main composer, but we all worked together from the beginning to the end… For example, "The Shining" was written by Pier for the most part, "The Sacrament" features riffs by Xort, etc.

Why did you change label ? How has the Listenable deal worked out for you?

We always try to sign with the most appropriate label, the one who simply gives us the best deal, and seems to really care about the band. Osmose is a really cool and dedicated label who worked hard to make the band bigger. Many thanx to Hervè and crew for that. But we needed a change,
you know, we can`t stand routine, it`s a matter of inspiration for the band, we always have to go further and further. And we thought it was really time to try something else, to start again, in a way. And "Redemption Process" is undoubtedly a kinda new start for the band. This time, we signed several license deals, according to the different countries, so that the label can focus on an area he knows well. We have different labels in Korea, Russia, Japan, USA, etc. Listenable is our
European one, and also our "mother-ship" who manages all the different licences. They really believe in the band and give us total support. We are their top priority for now, so it couldn`t be any better!

The Scandinavian part of your last European tour were aborted. Are there any chances of seeing you in Norway/Sweden this time (please!!)?

Yeah, fuck that, we were so fuckin glad to have the opportunity to play in Scandinavia, we were ready to kick serious ass, and the day before we were supposed to fly to Finland, the booking agency phoned us and told us they were losing too much money or something like that… I feel so
sick about that shit. Anyway, I hope we can play in Norway next year, our booking agency in France is currently trying to get the band on a European tour, and I fuckin hope it goes over to Scandinavia!


Maybe it`s a bit early to ask, but have you made any material for the next album yet?

Not yet, we`re more like playing live as much as possible at the moment. But Stefan just told me he wanted to start working on new stuff next week…

In "Stabat Mater Dolorosa", there is a line: "vexilla regis prodeunt". What does that mean?

It means "The standards of the King are advancing". It`s adapted from the Bible.

Have you bought any great albums yourself lately?

Yep, really liked "Leviathan" by Mastodon, even if it`s not the kind of music I`m usually into. Also "Reise Reise" by Rammstein, quite simply…

That`s about all for this time. Hope we`ll finally see you around here in Norway soon! Never stop haunting us!

Thank you for your neverending support, you rule! See ya on tour!