Erwan Meunier from France's WARM TV conducted an interview with vocalist Alex Krull of German gothic death pioneers ATROCITY about the band's new studio album, "Okkult II". You can watch the entire chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On ATROCITY's origins, which date back to 1985:
Alex: "We were young kids and we were probably evolving. In these times, you always wanted to become the most extreme band of your area. There weren't so many bands, actually, becoming the first death metal band [in Germany] and that's crazy. These days, the underground good times of death metal and extreme music, you cannot bring them back. It's still inside of you. You are really proud and happy that you have been a part of this. We were people from the underground, tapetraders, insane times and how it was working out, if you look back, there was no Internet and stuff, so people had to write letters to get in touch with each other. It was great. We just felt like we wanted to do something with our band, music-wise, and organizing festivals and shows and concerts because there was no one really, just a few people in the underground scene who dared to do bands like that."
On the difference between the underground metal scene of today and the 1980s:
Alex: "The thing is, when you have a band for such a long time, I saw so many bands coming and going. It's very important that you have still the same passion, same enthusiasm, same spirit, driving force to make that kind of music and that's why we always were looking also for new challenges. For me, heavy metal also means freedom, musical freedom, no rules, no boundaries and always looking for new challenges."
On how he still finds the energy to write and record new albums and tour in support of them:
Alex: "We are in two bands: LEAVES' EYES and ATROCITY. You cannot really explain. It's probably your lifestyle. You choose this road, this path. Some people, they find out it's not the way they want to live, being away from home and being on tour. For me, it was always the opposite. It was great to meet new people. We played 50, 60 countries, five continents, whatever. This possibility wouldn't have [existed on] a lower level, if I was a private person, but as a member of the global metal family, as a musician, we could give something back also to the fans, going there, play there, meet the people. We had really great experiences on our last tour with the 'Okkult' album, the first one. We met some people. They were fans from the beginning. Some countries, we didn't have the chance to play before, like El Salvador, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, Taiwan, China, whatever, so we played there for the first time and there were people who were standing and crying and being touched. It was the same for us. This gives you a push. It really gives you a push back. Yes, going back to the studio, taking the energy from the shows and the fans."
On the lyrical inspiration behind "Okkult II":
Alex: "The whole thing started, actually, when we did the 'Atlantis' album in 2004, some years back. I found so many great sources for this kind of lyrics already with one topic of Atlantis. It was wide-ranging from serious signs, ecology, history [themes], esoteric views about Atlantis, then you had even people from the scene of mythology believing aliens and spaceships why we lived like that, also, going over to really weird stuff from the Third Reich occultists and scientists who were believing a special race was coming from all of these kinds of things. So, what I wanted to say is that we have all these kinds of sources. Although it's a global myth, one country with the Atlantis myth, it was already from South America to Europe, Asia, Africa and just with different names. We have this kind of a big flood and civilization is being destroyed. You actually have that, first of all. It is quite a lot of stuff, but, then, you have all of these categories and this is what it's about with the 'Okkult' trilogy. I thought, 'Okay, what will be next?' Will we write a concept about the mysteries of the world? The dark side of humanity? One album would not be enough for all these stories and topics. Some people think it's only about satanism and the religious side of the occult. No, it isn't. This is a wide field of completely different stuff."
"Okkult II" was released July 6 via Massacre Records. The production was once again handled by Krull at Mastersound Studio. The artwork was created by Stefan Heilemann of Heilemania (LINDEMANN, PAIN, KAMELOT, EPICA).