Hi there. Congratulations to your great new “The Pale Haunt Departure” album. Please describe the reactions to the CD so far.
Larry: Thanks for the congratulations. So far the reactions have been mostly great, definitely the best response we've had to date. We're quite pleased with it.
Some of our readers, especially in Germany or Europe, may never have heard about you. Please give us a short briefing of the band's biography.
Larry: We've been around since 1989, when Paul formed the band under the name Laceration. In the early nineties the band's sound took a darker, slower heavier sound, so the old guitarist came up with the name Novembers Doom, which they felt suited the music better. Since then we've released five full length albums and an EP. We've had many lineup changes, with Paul being the only original member left, but we've perservered and evolved musically to the point we're at now. You can read a much more detailed history of the band at our website www.novembersdoom.com, there's just too much to go into here, sorry.
What are the differences between your old albums like “To welcome the fade” or “Amid Its Hallowed Mirth" and the last one in your opinion?
Larry: There's been alot of difference between each album we've done. The first album was very slow and dirge-like, completely death/doom. With each album we've progressed and added more and more elements of other influences we have into the mix. "To Welcome the Fade" was a bit of a transitional album for us, because it had a mix of some of the elements that made up "The Pale Haunt Departure" material that came later, and it also had elements of our sound from our past, that we've sort of outgrown now and don't really focus on at this point. "The Pale Haunt Departure" is by far our most cohesive, aggressive, and mature record we've made to date.
What is the message of your new doom-death records full of deepness and progressive-melancholy!? I told about it, that it is the Death Doom Metal record of the Year 2005!
Larry: That's flattering to hear people say that. We don't really consider ourselves to be just a doom/death band because we have so many other elements to our music which don't fit that description. We just play dark metal, basically. We don't limit ourselves as to what we're willing to try. We'll play fast, slow, soft, heavy, whatever suits us at the time and is what we want to play. But I think that dark feeling will flow throughout all of it always.
Which one is YOUR favorite song from the album and why?
Larry: I don't really have one favorite on this album. This is the first time where we've made an album where I am equally proud of all the songs. Every song on this album means a lot to me and I enjoy playing, so I can't pick a favorite!
How did you choose the album cover? Is there a further meaning behind it?
Larry: The album cover art as wel as the artwork in the booklet was created for us by Attila Kis, an artist that Paul became familiar with online. We gave him the ideas for the concept and showed him the lyrics and he came up with the artwork for us, we love it. The artwork is all closely related to the lyrics of the songs on the album.
Are there some lyrics that are very special to you? Tell us something about them.
Larry: Paul writes all the lyrics and they're all very personal, he doesn't make up stories or just rattle off some moody poetic bullshit. They all come from personal things going on in his life or experiences he's really had. I think rather than explain it all to you, we'd rather people just read them and come up with their own interpretations. Obviously alot of it has to do with Paul's health problems and his uncertainty about the future, and his issues with raising a family under such conditions, and finding the strength to go on, etc. From there, I think it's best if you read the lyrics and make up your own ideas about what it's about.
Where do you get your inspirations from?
Larry: We all draw inspiration from our daily lives, I guess. Even with the problems that we may endure, we're actually not a bunch of miserable, depressed people. Inspiration hits at any time for any number of reasons, actually. Paul is obviously inspired by his life and his problems, as well as his hopes and wishes. I can personally be inspired by anything, whether it be problems I'm facing, or just listening to a great Deep Purple album haha, seriously
How would you describe your own music?
Larry: Dark, moody, aggressive, beautiful, moving....I don't know it's hard to really put words to it like that. Obviously music affects and impresses upon people in all different ways, so those above terms are just what I get out of it. Others might see and hear it completely differently.
What are your musical influences in your opinion?
Larry: Well as a band, we have so many different influences. All kinds of metal as well as prog, blues, classical, pop, and so on. I personally have alot of different influences like Pink Floyd, Deep Purple, Celtic Frost, Voivod, Kiss, Roy Orbison, Beatles, Trouble, Candlemass, Atrocity, Entombed....the list goes on. All of those influences make it into our writing and playing in one way or another.
We'd like to know something about the underground in your hometown. Are you still in touch? And if so: Where do you hang out? Are there still some unknown bands you like? And what about the Metal Scene in general? Do you know some bands, and if so, is there friendship, rivalry or more or less nothing special?
Larry: Chicago has always had a great metal scene actually. We may lack having enough places to really play this kind of music, but there are always really good death metal bands around as well as other kinds of metal. The band RELLIK is a really good local band who play fast heavy death metal. EDENS FALL and ION VEIN, as well as TWELFTH GATE, are all really good bands from this area, more prog-power kind of bands. We're longtime friends with USURPER, who put out a great cd this past year. We've had great bands like SINDROME, TROUBLE, MASTER, CONTAGION, MAIMED, MACABRE, come from this area and they were all friends as well as big inspirations to us back in the day. We're all a lot older now so we don't really go and hang out like we used to, but occasionally we might meet up for a Metal Night at The Exit club or something, or see each other at a show. There's some rivalry that happens like any scene, but we try to stay out of that bullshit. We've always been rather neutral with that stuff.
How important is it for you to play live on stage?
Larry: I think it's extremely important. I don't think it's important for a band like us to play constantly and tour for weeks and weeks like so many bands do. I realise that works good for some bands but I think for others its not necessary. I always hated when I'd see the same bands coming through town on tour all the time, it takes away some of the mystique and special-ness of it. We try to get out and play but I admit we don't play nearly enough. Alot of that has to do with jobs and health problems getting in the way....plus touring is fucking expensive! But this next year we have resolved ourselves to doing more playing and touring than we have before. We're eager to play these songs for people.
Are there still some bands you would like to play with?
Larry: Of course, there's plenty of bands we'd like to play with. It'd be nice to tour with some of our friends like Moonspell or Green Carnation, of course playing with Opeth again would be great, as well as Katatonia or Amorphis. I'm open to touring with anyone as long as it's a good bill that people will get off on.
Please tell us something about further Live activities.
Larry: We'll be playing more gigs soon, plus of course we need to get over to Europe! We're playing a cool fest in a few weeks here with Primordial, Thyrfing and Moonsorrow so that should be cool. After that we'll have to see what comes up.
We are looking forward seeing you in Germany. Best wishes for you all. Some last words for the readers?
Larry: We thank everyone for the support they've given us, and we hope to see everyone on the road sometime soon. Look for our new album and DVD to be coming out sometime within the next year, and in the meantime come visit us for www.novembersdoom.com Look forward to hearing from you, take care! Larry Roberts Novembers Doom
Thanks, see maybe sometimes on tour…………..