The Norwegian band Evig Natt has a new album out which is called Darkland. And a few things changed along the way, time to get a few questions answered. Stein and Kirsten were so kind to answer my questions!
You choose a Norwegian band name - Evig Natt. Did you want to have a Norwegian name right from the start? I guess it's easier to find a name which isn't already 'taken'... Or did it happen incidentally?
When me and Kirsten started this band, we came up with a lot of different band names. But we wanted something to describe our music as well as the lyrical expression.
One cold winter night when we recorded some demo stuff, one of us just said 'Evig Natt' (eternal night) and we both where sold. For us using the name in Norwegian, just became more personally and 'right' for us. Maybe the band name sounds odd to other people who don't speak Norwegian, but for us it was quite natural way to go.
It looks like Evig Natt was a trio working with other musicians which now became a full band... Is that right?
Almost true. No, we were a duo. Just me (Stein) and Kirsten. When we recorded our debut album I Am Silence we wanted to do it right, and use talented musicians we had worked with before. But out of the musicians we used on that album, only the drummer, Harald, is still in the band.
Oskar Naley is your singer, why him? Was it easy to get him into the band?
I was singing on I Am Silence, but I always felt that I wasn't a singer and that I didn't handle the vocals as good as it should. Then I thought about a friend of ours (Oskar Naley) who always did this amazing sing-along to music at our parties and stuff. We asked him to do a kind of audition in our studio for the Darkland song and he was really into it. We put him in the vocal booth in the studio, and hit the record button. DAMN!!!! Both Kirsten and I looked at each other with huge eyes, and got chills running up our spine, PERFECTION! And we new at once he was the perfect singer for Evig Natt.
Darkland is your new album. For the ones who only know your debut, how would you describe the differences between I Am Silence and Darkland?
Well, the difference between them, can I describe easy.
Darkland is 'DARKER', both musically and lyrically than I Am Silence.
And also, the songs on I Am Silence was 3-4 years old when we recorded them. On Darkland the songs are more up to date, and reflects more the current Evig Natt band.
On Darkland you have 2 songs with Norwegian lyrics, why these songs? What made them special?
Yeah, we wrote two songs in our Norwegian dialect. But this was, believe it or not, the hardest thing to do on the album. Our dialect is not made for singing, and it is really easy to get it to sound really bad. And on top of that, the lyrics in Norwegian makes you feel that you open up your whole soul to the world. It's quite difficult to explain. And I almost regretting writing the lyrics for the song Evig Natt, because it's so personally.
But now listening to that song in it's wholeness, I feel therapeutically relieved and happy that I wrote that song.
For many writing is a kind of self-therapy, do you feel the same way?
Yeah, For me it's definitely self-therapy, not just when writing lyrics but when I compose music also.
When going into that 'zone' I feel like I'm expressing myself and my thoughts through the music. And every time I finish up a song, it's kind of relief feeling you get.
Stein, you are working with different bands, when you have an idea for a song, do you know right from the start which band it'll be for?
Yes....most of the time I do. That's because of the thoughts and feeling I get when making the song.
I wont go into details, but it is just a feeling you get when making music for different bands. One song got a different vibe that another song don't have.
Cover artwork... The one to I Am Silence fits absolutely perfectly. Was it difficult to visualize Darkland? Btw, how did the cover artwork?
Thanks. When we first stumbled onto the artwork for I Am Silence at deviantart.com, our first reaction was "e;This is it!!!"e;. So we contacted the artist who had done it, Yaga Kielb, and she also did the whole booklet.
The Darkland artwork was also done by her. But we had already picked out that artwork for Darkland when we first started making music for the album. The Darkland song was completed when we released I Am Silence, and we felt that the artwork would fit the song/album title and the 'feel' of the new album perfectly.
You have with Black Dimension Studio your own studio. More freedom to work? Or does it need some scheduling due to producing other bands?
Yes, I love the freedom you have when recording an album, don't have to think about time and money. And you have the opportunity to try out many different things, without rushing it.
The scheduling thing wasn't a problem. Because we laid plans recording the album almost a year in advance.
As a producer you have to be open to other ideas - and it means to learn constantly. Looking back at the first production you did, would you change a lot, if you would get the chance to?
I can say it like this. If I produced our first album with the knowledge I have now, the album would have sounded different. But I wouldn't change a thing NOW, as I think that was the sound I was after back then...and I still enjoy it.
I'm more or less nostalgic, and think bands should leave their old albums as they where intended to be....at that time. It's like a part of a bands history, good or bad.
What do you like most about studio work? Is there any producer you would like to learn from? You would like to watch working?
I really enjoy that time in a production, when a song comes to life. Like, when the drums are finished recording, and first guitar track is finished. Then, when adding the second guitar, the song takes life. And it's getting bigger and bigger, when adding bass, vocals and maybe keyboard.
My favorite producers must be Andy Sneap, Dan Swan÷ and Jens Bogren.
You just played Karmøygeddon Metal Festival - again. How was it to play there again?
Great as always, we opened the festival had a fab time playing to a kick ass audience. Thanx for all the support guys!!! ;) I also have to add that the guys at Karm°ygeddon festival are doing a fantastic job making the festival into an amazing experience for both the audience and the bands. I can't give this festival enough praise. Everyone should try it. ;)
Any news about touring? More festivals?
Well, we are in negotiations for a tour later this year, but it is still a liiiiiitttttle bit too early to confirm anything just yet. There will be more gigs and a tour in the near future though. We'll keep everyone posted on our official website.
Kirsten, is it true that you studied at Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts? How came you ended up there?
Yes, I studied at L.I.P.A. from 2003-2006. After Music College in Norway I wanted to continue my studies. However, I didn't want to go to any of the Norwegian music universities where I'd have to train classical music, jazz and study music theory. Too many rules ;). I wanted something different, a university where I could work on developing my voice in the style I prefer, study music business and to create a network of other like-minded people. I guess I could have studied at NISS in Oslo, but they only offer a diploma whereas at L.I.P.A. I got the BA Hons in music which I wanted in addition to an amazing experience.
And what's going on with Reism?
We're currently working on our second album which will be ready early September. We're already finished recording 5 of 10 songs and are well on the way with the rest. It's been a while since we released the first album but I have to say I'm very pleased with how the new material is sounding.
What's next on your schedule?
Next will be post production for our first music video. We just finished shooting everything last weekend for the title track Darkland from our new album. Hopefully, as I said before, there'll also be a tour in the near future.
Thank you for showing an interest in us!
To all of you guys and girls out there, remember to pick up a copy of our new album Darkland! You might just like it! Horns up to all of you out there supporting and to all of you crazy metal heads! :D
Cheers from all of us in Evig Natt.
Hopefully Evig Natt will get a chance to tour, meanwhile keep your eyes and ears open for the upcoming video.