Hi Kate, sorry, hi Moss! How are you?! Congratulations with regard to your CD "Sub Templum". It´s f****** strange, really strange music you did; it´s only for the very hard union of Doom/Black Sludge genre!
Cheers. We get all kinds of people into our shit..punks, progheads, ambient fans, it's not just for folks into doom/sludge..sometimes we're too slow for that crowd even!
Some of our readers may never have heard about you. Please give us a short briefing in the band's biography!?
We started playing in late 2000, but we knew each other earlier than that. Moss was pretty much born in this secret shed that we used to go in to smoke loads of weed and do acid and mushrooms and coke and listen to fucking doom and punk at insane volumes…just a sick little gathering. One day we thought it'll be a good idea to start a band, keep us out of trouble! We got a rehearsal space in the worst part of town, and just started crafting these horror monoliths from there.. it's always been me, Dom, and Chris. I guess we called ourselves Moss in tribute to the ancient forest that is our home, you'll find tons of moss there all over... a piece of moss is so fuckin doom, it'll grow and spread really slowly on a tombstone or some 10000 year old tree; we tripped out on that imagery a bit when thinking of a band name. I don't want to go into our full discography here; it's pretty long and can be found on our myspace. We've done several demos and split recordings and some comps, and our first album Cthonic Rites came out in 2005. We're all involved in our own bands but nothing worth talking about here. What we do outside Moss isn't important in the context of this band.
In my opinion your record sounds like a mix of very old songs of Cathedral, some new stuff of Neurosis with strange voice and veeeeeery deep slowmotion-sound. What are the reasons to play this style of deep music, are you depressed?
No, we're not depressed and depression isn't a motivation or goal with this band. It's more about creating feelings of terror, unseen things lurking in the darkness, occult ritualism. Moss is like the acid tab that will cause you to go insane, kill your family, carve a sigils in your skin and try to invoke the old ones. Total fucking mind control. We hope!
We'd like to know something about your background in making music. How did you learn to play, what are your experiences and which musicians are your main technical influence and your idols? Where do you get your inspirations?
I guess when I stated doing harsh vocals I was into guys like Seth from A.C., Cal from Discharge, or Mike from Eyehategod, and I tried to sound like them a little bit. My favourite vocalists though are Scott Reagers from Saint Vitus, Steve Sylvester from Death SS and Ian Gillan, but I don't try to sing like any of these in Moss. Of course Moss' main inspiration is the occult. While we don't practice any kind of magic, I've many books and many hours of study that have influenced and inspired when it comes to the lyrical themes and the visual aspects of the band. We're all major horror freaks and we recorded this new album in-between watching some choice horror flicks, of which there is a list in the liner notes. None of this modern bullshit! Bands we all like and agree on to some point are definitely Saint Vitus, Winter, Antonius Rex, Sabbath, Discharge, Hellhammer... can't forget how important weed is to this band too. Might be a clichés for a slow band, but it's so fucking vital to anything that we do. I'd have murdered someone if it wasn't for drugs.
…what the hell?!:-)
Are there some lyrics that are special to you, tell us something about your lyrics, what is the message?
All the lyrics are special to me. They act sometimes as little horror stories or are other times a bit abstract. There's always a concept, although the words may be hard to understand I don't ever use wordless and random screams. 'Subterraen' for instance is set within the "Sub Templum" (an underground chruch), someone crawls down into it and tries to perform a ritual - the words chanted in the middle of the song are 'I CALL THEE WHO SHALL GRANT ME UNDEATH'. It's mainly to do with what I get from the music, what images it's conjouring within my head, as the lyrics are always written last.
Do you think it would be possible to play this kind of music LIVE on stage I mean, do you really think it is possible to play live some track like "Gate III"?
Yeah, it's possible.. all of our stuff is recorded live in one take anyway. I do think gigs somewhat compromise the atmosphere of the band a bit though…it really depends on where we play. Normal gigs can sometimes be too much of a "social" happening for this band. I would love to play in a church or a really old forest…somewhere to suit our aesthetic, other than some shitty club. Supporting Black Sabbath with a proper black mass would be cool!
How and why did you choose the dark album cover - it looks like back to the 80ies; Black/Venom/Hellhammer -Metal time?
Cool you thought that. Some cool art was being made in the 80s by those bands; fuck all this Photoshop and computers crap. The cover of 'Black Metal' is so awesome and I loved it as a kid, simple as fuck... it's just the devils face!! I still need that t-shirt... and Hellhammer with the devil with the big dick, ahahah... That old school feel is important to us, it's what we know best. There was no way we'd get any computers involved in the artwork. Our cover is a spin on the Masonic apron presented by Marquis De Lafayette and it was drawn for us by Roisin Dunne. We've had it altered slightly so it has more significance to us and the Sub Templum concept... what you see on the cover is the Sub Templum.
What about the recording process of your album -any stories or curiosities to report? And who was the producer in witch studio - and why?
Our producer was Jus from Electric Wizard. He did our last LP too, and knows what we like so he's someone we can trust. The studio was deep in Wales in the middle of nowhere, very secluded and a perfect location to record our kind of music. As I already mentioned, we recorded in-between watching some cult horror in the cottage next door, and it really helped with the vibes and atmosphere. Most studios you don’t really get a chance to do that.
Did there exist any expectations on the part of Rise Above Records (of Lee Dorian personal) how the album had to be like? How do you get the contract with Lee and how was the meeting with him?
ahaha, nah. Lee knows what we sound like and what we're likely to deliver, so there were no words over direction or anything like that. I gave Lee one of our demos at a gig about 8 years ago now, he really liked it and he's been in and out of contact with the band ever since. We did a 7" for Rise Above a couple of years ago that did well, so it made sense to go with them for the new record.
We are looking forward seeing you in Germany with that kind of great slow-motion part in very dark bar or something...... Best wishes to you all.
Fuck that, if we go to Germany it's got to be in a castle! Cheers!