AVA INFERI – These burdens
- by Roy Kristensen
- Posted on 31-12-2010
The Portuguese warmth combined with an introvert creator has created an album that speaks to you in sadness and melancholia. Mr. Eriksen (R) has written the music while Carmen (C) has penned the words as well as sung them with her very personal touch. The questions are composed like they appear in the ‘view.
Ava Inferi, how’s that name for a band?
Didn’t you have any other monikers in hand?
R: “Well, for me the band name represents the duality of the concept we have established.
Ava is the highest, the pure and unreachable and the Inferi part represents all the things below. I believe this description also goes beyond the name itself, as the music for me also represents some kind of yin/yang or balance if you’d like (the duality). We all believe that this name had the right essence and meaning for this emanation.”
You are signed to a mayhemic label, namely Season Of Mist.
Why did you choose them, did they hold tight around your wrist?
R: “Season of Mist has always been a supporting label. I have worked closely with them for more than 8 years already and I find the cooperation highly satisfying. When I mentioned Ava for them they soon wanted to hear some mp3s etc. I send them some music via mail and they found it interesting. And actually, it was as simple as that. They liked what they heard, they thought it sounded promising and some months later we found ourselves recording in Top Room studio, under the moniker of Season Of Mist.
There were some problems though, with the 1st pressing of the album. Somebody made a mix-up so that the un-mastered version ended up for printing. That was a grey day for us all but the label realized about the damage and held back what was in stock. The correct and re-printed version should be available now.
Despite this human error I strongly believe that the cooperation will carry on through some more years. Actually, the preparation for the next album has started already and we are very pleased with the songs so far…”
The first impression of the album is a sad feeling.
But the way the album grows is appealing.
I think the music paints in the colour grey.
What were the thoughts hidden in its way?
C: "Melancholy. But the album, as the title reveals, is also containing so much more. Lyrically the subjects differ from suffering on a spiritual level, the spirit world and also revenge. With the spirit world I mean the “ghosts” or the negative thought-patterns from our past that comes back to haunt us. And “they” want to explore our weaknesses.
I believe everything is collected under the album title actually; “Burdens”.”
“Burdens” is the name of the full-length album of yours.
Is the album a relief to you, leaving you with full force?
C: "It was a relief in so many ways to get these themes recorded. It was both purifying and revitalizing at the same time. Purifying because I faced with all my negativity during this recording and revitalizing because the birth of this album made me believe in myself, and what I could offer musically. This is just the first album but I already feel more confident about my own performance as a musician. I feel the future very bright.”
The music as a whole is definitely warm.
But, do you want your music do to any harm?
Or, what is that you will with your new construction,
Should we regard it as another nihilistic destruction?
R: "Hehe. Well, I feel that this release offers people a new insight in what I’m capable of doing, as well as it opens new doors for me on both musical and more personal levels.
This is maybe best described as the other side of the coin. I’m not as simple or single-minded as one might think, hehe. I believe that when I moved out from my native country and got more stability around me, that these essences found its way to the surface once more. With peace and focus the inner voices are easily heard. This doesn’t mean that my other projects will be more laid back in the future, on the contrary. But in Ava I found a “new” expression, which will follow me for the rest of my days.”
The gloomy guitars that runs the record,
you weren’t afraid we listeners would end up bored?
The songs follow a red thread,
and they slowly but safely stay in my head
but my first impression was that it was one long song,
there was nothing that stirred me, no huge ‘bong’…
R: "We are not making stereotype songs that appeal to everybody. For us this was a spiritual cleansing as well as a birth of something personal. If people like it, we are happy. If not? Ok.
We are not here to please the world, hehe. Somehow I cannot force myself to speak the language of the common kind either.
At the same time you have to realize that this is more of an ethereal album. I guess some parts have more in common with acoustics or jazzy outfits than metal, and that they might be difficult to get into at first listen. Anyway, we believe in the magic captured in this album and we are very proud of the achievement and the hard work within. Now, all our energies are focused on the 2nd outcome.”
“The Shrine”, only by piano, is a short track.
It is beautiful, and a genuine intermission before the next attack.
“A Glimpse Of Sanity” is Carmen’s moment of glory.
Now, about Carmen, please tell us the story?
R: "Well, I met Carmen 3 and a half year ago in Lisbon. Ever since, she has been a part of my life. Doing this with her opened many opportunities musically speaking. We are both totally dedicated to music so no need to say that we are highly optimistic about the future. For me, she has one of the most beautiful voices in recent times. And it is a privilege for me to work with such an artist as well.
It’s also important with different interpretations of the songs you know. I’m very happy with the way she uses her voice, from the calm, sad or distant to these theatrical “Jekyll and Hyde-ish themes. Although “Burdens” was my initiative I feel the new material will hold the creative aspects of the both.”
A couple of minutes (2.48) in “Sinisters”
it sounds to me like there’s
an acoustic little piece of guitar
reminiscent of an album from afar.
Does Bathory work as an inspiration source?
Do you see Quorthon riding his horse?
R: "Hehe, well actually what you hear is a Portuguese guitar. We thought it would be a good idea to include this to bring out some essences from the cultural soil of Lusitania. Carmen also has some kind of Fado-singing here and there (traditional Portuguese mourning). I strongly believe that we will include these things on the forthcoming albums as well. It makes the songs stand out more I think. It might also be a key to attention and recognition in other aspects and circles of music. Sometimes I catch myself thinking that maybe being on a typical metal-label is slightly too narrow or regressive for us, as I think that our sound can appeal and attract other kinds of people as well. We will see what the future holds. We will certainly do everything we can to make this a household name.”
Despite that you’ve written in all,
is Ava Inferi ready for the big hall?
I see you as a band using candles on stage,
for it’s melancholic with any sign of rage.
R: "About shows and touring etc in the future, I believe we will be using something more of a theatrical show. Well, that is if the stages are fit for it of course, and also that our budget allows it. 2 key aspects, hehe.
Further, we haven’t really discussed how to do it yet, how to approach these emotions and atmospheres that runs through the songs, on stage. I guess the main reason is that any kind of touring or live performance at this point is out of the question. We would like to focus on the 2nd album first, and then maybe head out for some weeks on the road in support of that album. Hopefully we can hook up with some big name, slightly different from our style to get abroad you know. We will see. Nothing will happen until next year anyway, as we hope to enter the studio again late this year.”
After the mesmerizing glimpse of sanity,
a track that should heighten your vanity,
“The Wings Of Emptiness” must be
as beautiful to you as to me.
So, Mr. Eriksen, do you see your music so sad,
meant for the happy or for the sad?
R: "I believe that everyone will find something in it. I guess its one of those songs that can bring you further up if you’re happy, and maybe also all the way down if you’re sad. When that is said, I strongly believe that the specific song is actually positive in its core. There is some kind of light shining in that song, something to hold on to, some kind of hope. It’s most likely Carmen’s hypnotizing and soft strokes that grabs you…the voice of something out of this world. Also, that song is without doubt the most “commercial” step I’ve taken so far. And it’s not in a negative way, I believe.
Speaking of negativity, I believe the album possesses fragments of utter doom. I strongly do. But at the same time it holds so much more. I feel like Ive painted a different image of myself. It’s very intense, yet not really that “threatening”. Introversion might be the word.”
The bluesy “Vultos” is sensual and dim,
with Carmen’s voice everything but slim.
Did you guide her on her way,
to allow her to stay?
She wrote all the lyrics for your compositions,
so, what were her morose inspirations?
R: "Here’s Carmen to guide you….”
C: "It’s a bit difficult to talk about inspirations actually; it’s like a summary of impressions that I get from everything from dreams to my everyday life, images that I see, landscapes that I see that stays with me, feelings…
There are some parts in the songs, that with only a few notes, I am able to achieve that special feeling that for me is the essence of the song itself. And I want to say as well that the way Rune is creating his songs is like a meeting point or a guiding light for my expressions as well. We meet halfway you can say, and I further believe that this cooperation or symbiosis is a force or an energy that’s leading us in to our common goal of hope.”
Now, let’s not make this as long
as the albums lengthiest song.
Is there anything you’d like to say
before we call it a day?
“Thanks for showing interest in these burdens of ours.
People interested about the band, backgrounds etc can check out www.ava-inferi.com for regular updates.
Explore yourself; join us!!”
…read the newer interview on the Imhotep site HERE…