Interview: Vinterriket – June 2003
Vinterriket – a well known band in the underground scene being appreciated for its original special music and also for its many releases. The music Its full of emotions, a mixture of ambiental style (edit: dark ambient expression was not really a defined concept at that time!) and black metal with grim guitars, mid-slow drums and shudder clean voices which leads to a depressive and beautiful atmosphere . For short the music expresses “die Zauber der Nacht”. The man behind the music and its music in the following interview.
Hi cz, as I do not know much history about the band, could you tell me some words about you and Vinterriket? How it all started?
Hails Casian! Okay, here we go: Well, the story/ history of Vinterriket is quite boring and nothing special, I think. I have started the whole project back in late 1996. In the early days the whole thing was very slow and I was not 100% behind it.
The first demotape was released in early 2000 or in the end of 1999, I think. So it took 3 years to finnish the stuff. This was mainly because of bad equipment and so on. After the release of the demo the whole thing became more serious and I totally focused on the project. Up til now many EP\’s, CD\’s Demos and so on have been published on different labels around the globe. Too many stuff to mention, actually. Vinterriket was founded because of my endless love to the dark side of mother nature. I wanted to express my feelings and the way I see nature through this kind of art in order to satisfy myself. You know, principally I make music ONLY for myself, for nobody else! If others like the music, too: Ok. If not, I do not care at all. Of course it is great to see that many others share the same feelings, that many others have the same visions/ landscapes/ feelings inside when listening to the music of Vinterriket and that many others interpret my lyrics as I’d do myself. Then I see they got the point I want to express. Others listen to the stuff and they understand simply nothing what I wanted to express. But as I said: I do not care at all.
There are other members in the band? On the \’Sturme die letzten Stille\’ a female voice is present.
No, Vinterriket is only me and I am Vinterriket. There are no other members involved. Haewwel has helped me on two tracks in the past with female vocals as a kind of session member. If I\’ll feel to use female vocals in the future again, I\’ll ask her, this is for sure. But there are absolutely no plans to include other members. Since Haewwel was doing the female vocals in the past she was responsible for some drawings, lyrics and pictures on other releases.
How many releases to date? Searching, I found about 26 releases consists of splits, 7\” pic., demos, promo material and a few CD albums actually.
Vinterriket has released a lot during the last years, yes. Too many stuff to mention at all. There are also a lot of different versions of different releases in different countries, if you understand what I mean. the whole discography (date: 30.05.2003) is here.
What is the latest release, can you tell me some words about it?
The new CD is called \”Winterschatten\” and was just released a few weeks ago on Ketzer Records (Germany) / Desolate Landscapes (Scotland).
The CD features both, dark Ambient stuff as well as songs with guitars, drums, vocals, etc. I avoid to use the term \”Black Metal\” here. 45 minutes playing – time. The CD is a conceptional album dealing with the darkness of the winter season. Layout, music and lyrics are going hand in hand. The Ambient songs on the new CD are more atmospheric and more simple than on the last CD \”…und die Nacht…\”. More cold and more desolate. Not that orchestrated and symphonic. The new CD is, of course, limited and handnumbered (1000 copies) and comes with special packing. MC version (550 copies) is out on Bloodhead/Opressor (Ukraina) and vinyl-version is also out now (Ketzer Records).
The vinyl-version is something very special this time: The album comes as 3-7\”EP Box, including three inlays, three art cards (kind of postcards). The vinyls itself are white, black and white/black marbled. The CD is a conceptional album dealing with the coming, the presence and the darkness of the winter season. The first two, more Metal related tracks, stand for the cruel and sudden arrival of winter (Track one means translated something like “snowstorm/ onset of the white darkness” . They reflect the cruelness. The other tracks stand for the cold presence of winter (for example the last track means “the eternal ice”). Layout, music and lyrics are going hand in hand.
Here are the other translations of the titles, too:
1. Schneesturm/ Einbruch der weissen Dunkelheit = snowstorm/ onset of the white darkness
2. Winterschatten = wintershadows
3. Eisige Feuer = icy fires
4. …endlos und karg… = …endless and desolate…
5. Verschneite Wälder = snowy woods
6. Das ewige Eis = the eternal ice
I know that you are a fan of Burzum and that you embrace some of the Varg\’s ideologies. What other books or writers influenced you?
VINTERRIKET is only influenced by the dark side of nature, nothing else! Sure, you get inluenced by many things around you, you can even say by ALL things around you: Friends, books, films, landscapes, pictures, music etc. But my main source is nature. The darks side of mother nature so to speak. Of course I like BURZUM. My favourite CD of Varg is hard to tell. I do not know. I like a lot of them very much. \”Hvis..\”/ \”Filosofem\” maybe? I do not know. I also like his 2 Ambient- CD\’s. Some of his ideologies/ ideas are ok and some are pure shit. It depends. But Burzum never had a direct influence on Vinterriket….
Thanks and hails from Siebenbürgen and wish you further inspiration in future releases.
Thanx a lot for the interview. Good luck for your magazine & germaniac hails.