We have the review on our site with the new record from Elmsfire, and the band had a tough time getting the album into place. So we took the possibility to let Doro from Elmsfire explain further about how things stand at the moment.
It was a pleasure to make a review of your debut album, but I wonder if it was the different changes in your line-up that made it difficult for you to make an album sooner than these many years? Have you any comments on why it took so long to make the album debut?
Hi Lars. First thank you for the review and now the opportunity for an interview. We really appreciate it and it all still feels new and a little weird, but GREAT nonetheless.
To answer your question: The line-up sure was part of the problem. Writing songs wasn't so much the thing as was getting the band into a working order. And of course money was a factor too since studio-time and production aren't exactly cheap. Many of the songs were already done long before we even thought about recording them.
And yes, please tell us a little about how you started the band? And why you choose the name Elmsfire?
In the beginning there's often two people, who think it would be extremely cool to found a band. In our case those two were Germano, our lead-guitarist and me. Our original intention was and still is to play our favorite kind of music, heavy metal, in a fashion that we both liked and with as much fun as humanly possible.
We picked the name Elmsfire in search for something that united powerful imagery, a hint of mystery and left enough space for a personal interpretation. I guess a ghostlike greenish-blue plasma-fire does all that. For us it was a symbol for the raw creative force, the passion that sleeps in everyone is ready break free at any time, violently even if suppressed.
When did you start writing songs for Thieves Of The Sun?
If I remember correctly we started working on the 1st song for Thieves late in 2009. Once that was done the rest just kind of burst out of us and took form at an almost scary speed and surprising us in their progress...
Do you write songs as a band? Or is there a main songwriter?
The mastermind behind the music at the time is still Germano who on occasion wakes at night to record a riff or melody that just came to him or that he dreamed about. We often use those ideas when we sit down together and make them into songs.
Regarding the lyrics that is our bass-player Fritz' and my domain. When a song is done in its structure we'll sit down, listen to it together and see which moods and ideas come to mind. Often they are very similar in their basic emotion.
What inspires you to write music/lyrics?
The inspiration behind any song is always an authentic experience that someone in the band has made. We then add a coat of mythological and mystical elements rather than write it down in a straight rock'n'roll kind of fashion so it will become more universal and anyone who listens to it can find his own interpretation and means of identification. The basic experience does no longer belong to just one specific person, but to many who might feel close to it and can relate.
Can you please clear up the circumstances for the latest change, bringing in the new vocalist Erdmann?
To do that I have to go back two years from now when our singer Lukas left us in the middle of the recording sessions for Thieves Of The Sun. He didn't feel home in the whole heavy metal area any more and there were different, more pressing priorities in his life. For us that was quite a shock and the timing couldn't have been worse. Nonetheless we decided we wanted to finish that album. We got that far we really didn't want to stop, not being sure if we'd ever pick up the threads again-so we asked Ross if he would do the job.
We are still amazed about his work and the readiness and passion with which he joined our cause.
By the way: what bands / artists made you start playing? And which bands / artists are you listening to these days?
For Germano it wasn't a specific band or artist that made him play: he just always ever loved the instrument and the skills needed, the joy of just trying. Sure Metallica and Iron Maiden did their part as well...
I for my part can't name a single source, too. It was all those damn cool guys up on stage that made the impression and had that impact on me. What really hit me was Alex Skolnick's solo on Testament's Return To Serenity. And Slash was a huge influence too, almost a role model. :)
These days you'll very often find either Amorphis or Avenged Sevenfold in our cars' players, but every now and then we will resort to those who have inspired us in those early days as much.
How long did the recordings take? Where did you record Thieves Of The Sun? And who produced the album?
Recordings for the album took us about four weeks in two sessions in total. One week for the drums, two for guitars and bass and then another one just for the vocals. Thieves was recorded at Spacelab Studios in Oedt and produced by Christian 'Moschus' Moss who already has quite a reputation. He sure has made his homework, knows his craft and has a fabulous ear...
Who did this interesting artwork you have on the record? And how is it tied to the album title?
It was Germano who painted that cover himself. He learned a lot in the process and taught himself all the skills needed for that. He did quite a job!
The artwork shows an attacking harpy which is a reference to the title-track. It's basically about the rage, anger and hate you feel for someone who just stole the thing most important and needed from your life. In this case the sun stolen out of the Mediterranean sky by a bunch of adventurous Norsemen and the harpies now chasing after them to take it back and tear them into pieces.
Which songs do you think represent Thieves Of The Sun best? And why?
I believe that would also be Thieves Of The Sun for apparent reasons. The emotion behind it is very strong and in that quality represents all the others, too, about which I could say the same. And it is a nice piece of storytelling. Thieves is also the song which contains very strong and distinctive parts of all those who worked on it. It represents the heart of band in a manner of speaking.
With such a powerful album, have you thought about making a video? Which songs would you like to visualize?
Sure we have thought about that. Stormchild would be great to make into a video, the images are perfect to tell a visual story as well... but there is again the question of money and if we get real with making a vid we want it to be the real thing. At the time it sure is out of question, but it can't hurt to make some plans. :)
I guess you already got some feedback. Are you satisfied so far?
We had a bit of everything so far, but it was mostly quite good so I am convinced we can be satisfied. I have to admit that this whole thing is very exciting for us and each new review that comes in is greeted with the same feeling of thrill and anxious anticipation. :)
What about playing live? Anything on the way now that you made the album?
There are certainly some gigs coming up and the dates will be shown on our homepage. We hope there will be a lot more soon for we are eager to get back on stage, this time with a more stable and truly capable line-up.
Do you plan to record some live footage - not talking about ProShots - for YouTube or similar platforms?
We sure do-taking it to the next, professional level with some nice fancy live footage and shots would be great. We have only recently been considering the options. Expect the results when you see them. :)
Talking about the internet ...... Social network is both a blessing and a curse. What's your opinion about it?
The plain and simple truth which we have to face is that you nowadays can't go without. It is paramount to be present on the web and on the social platforms just to be in contact with your crowd, also to reach more and new people. It is to keep in touch, to feel the pulse of the whole thing. If you are doing it right I can't see a problem here. This is just how it works today.
What's next on your schedule? Anything you want to add to the interview?
I'd like to thank you again for your interest in us and the opportunity to answer your questions. I hope the replies were equally interesting and they will help giving anyone who might read this an idea about what the band is about.... Hopefully it will get you curious enough to maybe give us a minute's time to listen to our stuff. Thank you!
We also say thank you for having time to answer our questions, nice to hear that bands also create their own art cover for their albums. Stay heavy.