[Interview] Exclusive interview with Chains

Dear readers,

It is our pleasure to offer you an interview with a Slovenian band known for their Doom and Occult Rock sound. We welcome Chains.

Hello, how are you?

Hey hey,
Everything is fine here, thank you!

Why did you choose the name Chains, and what meaning does it have?

I am a big fan of Paul Chain and Death SS. In 2010, I recorded a hypnotic drone song titled “All The Colors Of The Dark,” inspired by the Italian giallo “Tutti I Colori Del Buio.” I made this song as a transcendental experiment, setting the mechanical metronome to 70 bpm, which is the speed used to hypnotize people. Once I finished the track, I liked it and decided to create a project from it. To honor Death SS and Paul Chain, I initially wanted to name it CHAINS OF DEATH, but it was too long. So, I decided to simply call it Chains because it reminds me of old ghost stories where people hear the sound of chains before they see the ghost. It fit perfectly with the music style.

Your style incorporates Doom, Occult Rock, and Post-Metal. Where does your passion for these sounds come from?

Etienne: “As I mentioned before, I am a big fan of Death SS/Chains. I also like the Misfits, Danzig, Type O Negative, Abysmal Grief, Electric Wizard, and other bands in different genres. I think the comparison I hear the most is, “You sound like Misfits but doom.”

You recently signed a record deal with Electric Valley Records. What can you tell us about that?

We are super pleased to be part of the EVR family, especially to be on the same label as our brothers Wizard Master. Marco is very professional, and we look forward to unleashing future releases with EVR.

In October 2023, the split ‘Rito Funebre’ was released together with Black Spell. How would you describe this work?

We had been discussing doing this split with Black Spell for some time. I think our styles fit together perfectly in terms of themes and imagery. They are great guys, and in my opinion, this split is killer. On our side, we have a collaboration on the track “Nocturnal Children Arise,” which I am very proud of because I am a huge Abysmal Grief fan. Regen Graves agreed to add some organs to the song, and I think it’s the perfect mixture of Chains and Abysmal Grief and the macabre sound I love.

Then we have a punk/doom song “In The Night,” which is a love letter to Misfits and vampire movies like Lost Boys, After Dark, and Interview with the Vampire. Next, we have “Peace Love Lucifer,” which we like to call the “We Are the World” of doom. The song is an anti-war, anti-violence, anti-racism song inspired by a Shepard Fairey poster, “MAKE ART NOT WAR.” In this time of hatred, we as human beings need to spread more love and stop all this violence because our only enemy is politics that try to put us against each other.

This was the lyrical aspect of the songs. Now the technical part: we recorded “Peace Love Lucifer” and “Nocturnal Children Arise” in The Zone studio with our brother Iztok Bajc from the band FROM ASHES, and we recorded “In The Night” at our bunker with Uncle Feko “Alen Fekonja”, who did the outstanding mix and master for the split.

With granitic riffs and an energetic, distinctly doom sound, how does your music creation process work?

Usually, I play some riffs at home with the acoustic guitar. When I find riffs that I’m not bored of after months or years of playing, we jam with Matz Sick at our bunker until we find the “perfect” or final form of the song. Every recording session, we improvise a song and put it on the record. It’s almost a ritual.

Both the music and the vocals are very intense. What themes do the lyrics cover?

They vary greatly. You can find social themes, pop Satanism, occultism, horror, personal life, witchcraft, folk magic, and more.

Where does your passion for occultism come from?

As a child, I was always fascinated by the unknown, ever since I first watched Ghostbusters. I remember my grandfather bought me a lot of books about ghosts, UFOs, cryptids, and then I started collecting a Slovenian magazine called MISTERIJI, which covered all the themes I already mentioned. Later, I started studying Crowley, LaVey, Chaos Gnostic Satanism, Kabbalah, and other subjects.

Many of our readers and your fans wonder if there will be a chance to hear your music live. Do you have any plans in this regard for the near future?

We were on tour with Wizard Master in April. Now we will play two summer rituals, one in Trieste at Karst Rock Fest and another in Slovenia. At the end of September, we will play a few shows with The Ossuary and probably another tour at the end of October.

Apart from the reissue of the split album, do you have any other record releases planned in the near future?

As you mentioned, the split will be out on tape via Ruidoteca Records and on CD via Interstellar Smoke Records. Then we will start working on some new songs for another split and an album.

Music is constantly evolving. How do you see the modern scene in your country and in your genre in general?

I think we can’t create something entirely new in music. It’s all been done by the masters of the genres. Now we can pick up music already known and try to be “as original” as we can. We are doing this because we love it, and we make music we would like to listen to. Our country has a lot of great bands and some nice festivals like Tolminator in Tolmin. The scene is alive. We have some great live music venues, so although we are a small country, we have a lot to offer.

What advice would you give to young artists approaching music in a genre like yours?

Do the things you love, be passionate about it, connect with other bands, fans, and people who like the same stuff you do. Don’t waste years trying to release the perfect album because every album or release is a representation of the moment you composed it, and it’s cool as it is. It’s a sonic diary. Personally, every song/album is a fragment of my memories.

Do you have any other activities or artistic passions outside of music?

I love drawing. The art from Rito Funebre is my creation, so in my free time, I make illustrations under the name DOOMCVLT666. I have a solo acoustic project, ETIENNE VON CHELLERI, and another project called TEUFEL (atmospheric folk black metal).

I thank Chains for the interview and wish them all the best for the continuation of their artistic career.

E. Chains / Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Effects
Matz Sick / Drums

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Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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