Veintears (Greece) 20/07/2011
I discovered Veintears completely by accident, a day when I was searching myspace. I listened to the tracks that they have in their page and I understood that it’s another remarkable effort from Greece. So I contacted Thanasis, one of the founding members and singer – lyrics’ writer of Veintears. Fortunately Thanasis was in the mood to talk in the interview and I enjoyed the contact a lot. So the time has come to meet Veintears…
1. Hi Thanasi, thanks for the interview. Do you want to start by giving me some information about Veintears? When and how were they formed, who are their members etc?
Thanasis: I salute you and the readers of your blog which is the first mean to which Veintears give an interview. Everything started in Kalamaria Thessalonikis as something completely personal, something to do with my friends but in the course it evolved and got bigger totally unexpectedly. In July of 2009 me and Father Alex being closed in a room under the influence of traditional but also of Suicidal Black we decided add also something of our own to this feeble genre regardless if we did that successfully or not because as I mentioned just before, our purpose was to create tracks for us and only for us. The same night we met with band’s third member, Laou. After some beers and after we told him our intentions, he was convinced to join the band without any more talking. The contradiction is that Laou isn’t a fan of Black, that fact intrigued me even more because if someone isn’t familiar with a music genre he can deliver innovative ideas. Anyway I know his skills as a guitarist and composer, so when I gave him 2-3 ideas he understood immediately and it slowly began. After a while I decided to create the band’s myspace page from which Michael found us, he got interested about us and so in 2011 the new born label Selbstmord Kommando Produktionen released our debut album.
2. In Veintears I came across some influences of classic DSBM bands but also some little moments of Greek sound. Which do you think are your musical influences generally?
Thanasis: Your approach about our sound is correct, for that I think the production is responsible. The mix and the mastering were done by Laou and I believe that he has achieved to create that 90’s feeling. In my opinion Black must have that kind of sound and not polished and so much carefully done currently as the majority does. The influences are lots because as I mentioned before Laou likes different music genres and he added much to the atmosphere and gave more feeling. Father Alex has much experience in doom and together with Laou, they have a band called The Temple that they will release a split cd with Condenados from Chile in late summer. I also have to mention that bands such as Antaeus, Mysticum, Celtic Frost, Thorns, Silencer, Isolation, King Diamond, Mercyful Fate have influenced us greatly. Inside the tracks some similarities may be found and that has been done deliberately, something like a tribute.
3. Unfortunately there are no lyrics in the CD. Do you want to tell me what is the lyrical themes which Veintears deal with?
Thanasis: The lyrics are all mine and that is a rule for me because when I get to write lyrics I know immediately how I’ll sing them and what feeling I’m going to express in every word. Mainly they deal with the dull urban daily routine, human relations, religions, a song is a nightmare that I once had and how life would be without our loved ones which is my biggest phobia. They aren’t pioneering nor do I have the intention to change peoples’ minds that’s why I don’t think that they would interest anyone, it’s like you sit in your home alone during times of self – criticism, of thinking or sadness and i want to know anything wayward, perverted and suicidal that you are thinking. I don’t say that I have suicidal tendencies or anything, I am a very pleasant person and I like to have fun with my friends, but there are moments when everyone is not happy and if the fucking mind thinks of something negative, it doesn’t stop and you end up in a labyrinth of shitty thoughts and that’s when the time is appropriate for me to write my thoughts down, I just don’t like to publish them. Someone may think that this is a frustrated attitude but it is my opinion.
4. What inspires you to write music and lyrics?
Thanasis: The process of composing is simple and very brief, the three of us just get together, someone tells an idea for the basic riff and then depending on how it sounds we continue until we run out of ideas. Each track is completed the same day, we never continue working on it another day because I believe that you lose the feeling of the moment and then the track may be confusing, that’s why it is composed and recorded the same day, either its duration is 4 minutes, either 9... It is completely random how much will the duration of a track be. In order to be more easy though, I give the track’s title so as to get in the mood about how the track will sound, and after the music part is done we see if the lyrics match with the music. Simple process but highly efficient.
5. Are you working on new material at the moment?
Thanasis: There is one completed track called Enslaved Soul which we would like to release it in a split or a compilation album. It’s completely different from everything we’ve done so far but it may be the compass that will show us to where we’ll move in the next album.
6. Are you in contact with any label for a future release or you’ll stay with the same label that released Redemption of the Soul?
Thanasis: We don’t chase anything nor do we want anyone to tell us ''I want you to release an album in the next year...''. These are bullshit for me, you can’t cause inspiration, it comes on its own. The label to which we belong is the best thing that could happen to us, when we feel the need to release something new, I’ll just tell it to Michael, we’ll send him the material and he will release it.
7. What kind of music do you listen to?
Thanasis: First of all I have to mention that I have no problem with any genre of music, I can find good elements in everything, I like for example bands such as Madrugada, White Lies, Archive, Depeche Mode, Gogol Bordello etc. About our music the list of the bands I can write is endless... personally I LOVE King Diamond and Μercyful Fate as also various bands that refer to that sound, some of them are Portrait, Tearstained, In Solitude. Apart from that I have a huge list of bands that I like from doom, black, oldschool death, sludge that it’s impossible to mention all of them. Father Alex is a heavy metal/doom metal freak but he also can listen to anything easily. Finally Laou is mainly in 70's prog rock but his participation in Veintears proves that he doesn’t have any music limits.
8. What is your occupation apart from music and the band?
Thanasis: Apart from the band there is only to have good times. The economic crisis has transformed us into a bunch of lazy because of the incapability to find a job. Though I have some urgent work to do because this time my house in an isolated area in the mountains of Chalkidiki is prepared where I hope to settle permanently some day. Father Alex studies in Bratislava pharmacy and this year is his final year and Laou is a relaxed and optimistic spirit without many worries at the moment, he just composes any kind of music.
9. What do you think about the Greek underground? Are you in contact or in cooperation with other bands?
Thanasis: Some remarkable bands in my opinion are Ezgaroth, Agnes Vein, Devathorn, Ravencult, Sun of Nothing, Universe217, Acrimonious, Bohemian Grove, Dead Congregation, Mass Infection, Tribe Of Neptune. Apart from that we know some members of other bands, we don’t have any music cooperation and we won’t.
10. How good or bad were the reviews you got by the press (Greek and foreign) and by the fans?
Thanasis: One day suddenly I saw our album, much time after its release, to be available for downloading in the internet, certainly I didn’t bother at all, on the contrary I said that it was good and that led me to various sites with reviews, I didn’t happen to see something negative but nor anything very very good. Many asked me to send them a cd in order to write a review, fact that shows that they found something interesting in us and asked to listen to more material from us. After that the dozens of personal messages of individuals that tell us their impression for our material shows that there is some appreciation and that please us very much because we never expected something like that.
11. What is the situation of Metal fans in Thesaloniki? Some friends tell me that Metal scene has grown a lot there… Is it true?
Thanasis: I don’t see something like that, some bands keep the flame lit up here, a huge example in my opinion is Αgnes Vein but generally the majority is directed by various magazines and internet press and apart from the classics the most of them don’t have the mood to search a little more in more underground paths. So Metal here is mainly amusement and not devotion.
12. Are you thinking about life performances? If yes where and when?
Thanasis: We will never perform live. We had many individual requests from abroad for live performances in places like Mexico, Italy and the U.S.A. but we have no intention to ever perform live.
13. Tell me about the near future plans of the band.
Thanasis: A guy from Colombia who releases compilation albums asked us a copy in order to include one of our tracks but I have no idea if he received that copy because I don’t have any news from him since months, Boronian of Garden of Grief asked us to participate in his compilation album and it will be ready soon. As I said earlier we would like to release a split and about a new album the only thing needed is just to get in the process of composition, firstly psychologically, after that nothing can stop us, however we don’t know when this will happen.
14. Do you want to add anything for a conclusion?
Thanasis: I thank you on behalf of the band for your interest. Download our album so as to have an idea about our music, whoever wants the physical copy of it in a very good price, he can take a look at the site sk-produktionen.blogspot.com. Moreover in September many interesting live shows will take place in our city with that of Aura Noir to lead, I hope to meet you there.