Eternity’s End – Let the Fire Burn Part IIThursday, 12th May 2016
Read Part I HERE.
Dead Rhetoric: What’s going on with Alkaloid – the progressive death metal band you have that includes Hannes and Linus, the rhythm section of Eternity’s End? Will there be a proper follow up to The Malkuth Grimoire?
Münzner: Yes, we are planning to start recording that later this year. Right now we are collecting ideas and collecting songs, everyone is writing. We always have a lot of ideas and then we really have to select what we are going to use that will work best in that particular style. It’s a very open style, it goes from 70’s progressive rock to neo-classical death metal style we played in Obscura so it has a wide range of influences. The idea for now is to record a second album and hopefully work with a label because the first album was self-released. We would like to also play some live shows, maybe a short tour or two down the line.
Dead Rhetoric: I also loved your work in Paradox on their 2012 album Tales of the Weird – how does playing with such varied sub-genres of metal help shape your overall outlook when it comes to future projects/ band output? Do you feel like you always gain something working with a different set of musicians?
Münzner: Oh yes, absolutely. I think the thing that influences my playing the most is working with other people and in different musical surroundings. Paradox was always one of my favorite bands, even though I never got to play live with the band – I played those songs regularly in rehearsal and it definitely influenced me on my approach to composition and songwriting. I really like Charly’s approach to songwriting and on the new Eternity’s End album there is a song called “The Fall of the House of Usher” that was influenced by my time in Paradox. A lot of the riffs could have been on the next Paradox album for example. This is with every situation I go into- I’m forced to think differently, different input and perspective which influences my own writing and my own perspective. Either consciously or subconsciously.
I’ve always been a fan of various sub-genres of music- metal of course being my favorite. I think it keeps ideas fresh rather than listening to one specific sub-genre of music. If you are a death metal band and all you listen to are other death metal bands, or power metal bands listening to other power metal bands only, this window of influence is quite limited. What happens is the music after a couple of records starts to be one-dimensional and repetitive. If you are open minded to other influences and willing to incorporate them this will keep the music fresh for many more years. I couldn’t imagine just doing the same kind of album over and over again. Paradox for instance, I was mainly a lead guitar player and I had to play over many different passages than what I did in Obscura.
Dead Rhetoric: An interesting quote from an online interview for Toilet Ov Hell webzine from you is: ‘Give me one band like Mercyful Fate over 1000 of those 8th note string skipping exercise bands any day.’ Could you elaborate on this, and what could people learn from Mercyful Fate in terms of approach, atmosphere, and overall songwriting? Which are some of your standout songs/albums in their discography?
Münzner: Right. I was basically referring to a lot of these newer bands, I’m not going to say any names, but most of the fans of my previous work always like when I give guitar lessons they are familiar with a lot of the next generation of death metal bands. When I talk to people, the main focus in their music is the motor skill and the technicality, it’s like they write music in order to prove a point in terms of their motor skills or mechanical ability. This to me is closer to sports for example where you try to challenge yourself through running 100 meters in a certain amount of time, that competitive type of approach. When I listen to it I noticed I just don’t feel anything- it sounds to me like exercise. Whereas in the older bands, for example Mercyful Fate and many others- those guys were really highly skilled players for their time but the individual skill of the musician wasn’t the focal point. The focal point of the music was the attitude, the overall atmosphere, they used their technicality and their knowledge to fine-tune things and shape them. Like many of the older bands, there are many more from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s- it was about creating great songs.
The way music is written nowadays, many bands use Guitar Pro and Midi-simulation to see what songs will sound like and that side of writing sounds good when you have a lot of notes. It doesn’t sound as good with longer or slower notes- it’s written from that kind of perspective. A single riff can then be way more complex than the guitar solo in many old school bands. A more primal sounding riff with attitude says so much more than a sweeping exercise that’s turned into a rhythm part, you know? People should start hearing music again from the perspective of what it actually evokes feeling-wise. The combination of notes and what they express, and I wish people would think more in terms of nice chord progressions and interesting song structures, melodies, and attitude through music. Technicality and the motor skills just shouldn’t be the starting point- or the main focal point- in what you are trying to say in music. It should only just be used as a tool to get your point across.
Don’t Break the Oath from Mercyful Fate is obviously the classic album, but I also like the later stuff they did. One of my favorites is an unpopular one they did, the last album 9. I love it, I love everything about it- it’s a little more compact and catchier than the earlier stuff, more straightforward. I like In the Shadows – there are a lot of very progressive tunes on there. My personal favorite is probably 9.
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