Iskald - 18/03/2014

Founding members Simon Larsen and Aage Krekling started up Iskald in early 2005 in Sortland. After their first demo, the ‘Northern Twilight’ EP was released some months later. In late 2006 both Simon and Aage moved to Bodø and continued the band activities from there. A temporarily new live line-up was requited and material for their upcoming debut was written. In march 2007 their debut ‘Shades of Misery’ was the first album to be released on Indie Recordings ever, resulting in a huge feedback and interest from all over the world. This lead to several live-shows the next months, in which reached its peak with the Inferno Festival 2008. A couple of months later they traveled to Berlin to record their second full-length album ‘Revelations of Reckoning Day’. This marked a start of a new era in many ways. The album became a success and lead to the first European tour and the legendary show at Hovefestivalen. From that day Ben Hansen – Guitars and Kenneth Henriksen – Bass joined in to complete the live line-up, and they have been playing for Iskald ever since. In between tours and live shows they composed the next album, ‘The Sun I Carried Alone’. It was recorded in the autumn of 2010 in Oslo and Bodø, and was later released in February 2011. The album turned out as another milestone and highlights included a Norwegian tour, a 22 days European tour. During all this time new material was on the rise, and after weeks and months with intense work they entered their own studio in Bodø September 2013, to record ‘Nedom og Nord’ which came out January 2014.

 

 

In order to get to know all about Iskald latest release we tracked down Simon Larsen (Vocals, Guitar) to answer some questions. Here you can read what he had to say to the readers of Metal-Experience.com.

 

Congratulations with your fourth cd! The bio stated that you think it’s your best cd yet and I have to concur. What is the part that satisfies you most in comparison to the older cd’s?

 

Simon: Thank you very much! This time the songwriting process has been a little different than earlier, so the songs are better arranged and written. We have recorded this album in our own studio, and that has also played its part in the quality of the songs, because we have been creative until the last second. Earlier we have been doing preproduction to finish the album before we entered the studio, and then in the studio we kind of just rerecorded the preproduction with a few new twists that we may have been working on in the time between. What makes us most satisfied is that I think that every part of every song is so great, and we have been able to get the best out of every song.

 

In the bio it’s stated that you wanted to try something new music and production wise, in what way did you do this? Because for example you worked once again with Studio 210 as on your previous records.

 

Simon: Yeah, we worked with these guys again, but we have done all of the recordings in our own studio, and that made the whole studio session more relaxing. Also we worked a lot on how the whole production should sound like, searching for the production that would get the best out of every song, so we started that process very early. We prepared very well this time for the production, which cannot be said about our previous releases.

 

Could you tell something about the writing process, especially with the mentioned focus on mood and feeling.

 

Simon: I composed six pieces of music, just some drafts. But as Aage came up with some lyrics I started arranging the drafts so they would fit to the lyrics. This is a long process, but it’s the most important part. By doing this we get some kind of song structure that we can start to work with. With the lyrics recorded as soon as the song structure is placed, it’s easy (well, well) to set the mood as everything is being arranged. When that part is done, I and Aage arrange drums for the songs, putting in fills and lots of details that I can start working with again when I arrange the guitars and bass over and over again. In this way the songs will have lots of atmosphere as well as they are filled with nice little details.

 

 

In what way did you build up your sound from scratch again (according to the Bio). To me the album sounds like a somewhat logical progression from Revelations of Reckoning Day.

 

Simon: I think the comparison is pretty good. But it feels more alive this time, and it’s very dynamic compared to that one. We redefined what the guitars should sound like, and we wanted a completely new sound for the drums, more bombastic and heavier than before. The vocal has also improved as I actually started practicing how to get the best out of my voice. In our opinion, everything is sounding better.

 

Is the choice for mood and feeling something you set at the start (for example: I want this song to resemble walking in a blizzard and thus the song comes out that way) or is it a more gradual process?

 

Simon: As I mentioned are the songs based on the lyrics, so it’s a feeling that is set from when lyrics are ready. But it’s a difficult process to achieve this. We may think the song got that feel, while other don’t, but we arrange and write until we finally feel the mood is correct.

 

Was it a deliberate choice to record three songs in the English and three songs in Norwegian language?

 

Simon: This is our first album with a Norwegian title so we thought it would be great to have more Norwegian lyrics. We think the English lyrics fits our music really great, so that’s why we also had to include these. They also make the Norwegian ones sound more grim. It felt the most natural to split it 50/50, so that’s what we did.

 

Is the format of 7+ minutes songs more fitting to your writing style? It seemed to me you needed all the minutes to fit in the many ideas and riffs.

 

Simon: Yeah, we actually had to cut every song down a few minutes, because there was really a lot of information we wanted to convey. It felt impossible to write 4-5 minutes songs, so I guess this is how Iskald will sound for the future as well.

 

You’ll be going on tour with labelmates Kampfar + Hate and Velnias. Looking forward to it?

 

Simon: We are really looking forward to the tour. We have been touring with Kampfar earlier and they are really awesome people so it will be great to share the stage with them again. Touring with all these bands are such an honor and I think this tour will be a success with lots of people at the shows and a lot of great music.

 

 

What kind of setlist can we expect for the coming show? Many new tracks or a blend of everything?

 

Simon: We are currently working on it. It’s hard to choose 6-7-8 songs when we got almost 40 songs we want to play. We will focus on the new material though, but there are a few songs from previous releases that we cannot let out.

 

What is the planning after this tour? More touring or are there already ideas for a new album?

 

Simon: We just have to take things as they approach. There aren’t any new tours planned yet, but I guess we will be playing at some summer festivals. New material is being worked with all the time, but I guess we will start focusing on new songs by the end of 2015. But hopefully we will be able to do at least a couple more tours before that, we’ll just have to wait and see.

 

Thanks for your time,

Thomas van Golen

 

Current Members:

Simon Larsen – Guitar, Vocals

Aage Krekling - Drums

 

Live Members:

Espen Solstad – Guitar 

Bass Ben Hansen - Bass

 

Albums:

2007 - Shades of Misery

2008 - Revelations of Reckoning Day

2011 - The Sun I Carried Alone

2014 - Nedom og Nord