Hello over there. First I’d like to thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to interview a band that I really enjoy its music. Please, I ask you to introduce yourself to our readers.
Hi, there! Kyrre, bass player of Vulture Industries. I am fond to do this interview, as Bjørnar, who normally is doing the interviews, is away pursuing his hobby as a fanatic air balloon aviator. The wind is very favourable this week, so we will not be in touch with him in a few days. Vulture Industries is a band with a multitude of interests, which reflects itself in the way we appear on recording and on stage. We reside in Bergen, Norway, a cultural village where almost every band plays black metal. We therefore advertise ourselves as being black, but we are really not. We call ourselves oddballs. Because we are, I guess.
I start this interview by asking how is everything on the Vulture Industries camp. Your latest release was the acclaimed album The Tower last year (2013). Any plans for 2014 or 2015 that you could share with us? The Blood Music release will be asked later.
Everything is fine and dandy, quite overwhelmed with all the great album- and show reviews, so we are trying to keep the feet in the mud, looking forward to head out again on a new tour very soon. 2014 is almost set as for playing dates, we are working on trying to do a western Europe tour this fall, but it seems there is too many things going on with our band members; Tor Helge is preparing for his next K2 climb, Eivind is into some agriculture project, doing his patency for harvesting of the famous Hardanger apples, Bjørnar of course is all around in his own balloon and there rest of us are keeping up the snooker gaming and bird watching. But we have been booked to some very nice festivals this summer: The Kilkim Zaiubu in Lithuania, The Dong Open Air in Germany and Metal Days in Slovenia. In October we will be part of Norwegian Hellcamp in Germany and Prog Power Europe in The Netherlands, but first out is our spring tour co-headlining with our good friends of Dordeduh (Romania), with the excellent Blutmond (Switzerland) as special guests, doing Eastern Europe in 11 days. As for 2015 we hope to be rehearsing new material for our fourth album, do more touring and festivals, but we’ll see; We have a mission trying to go to Japan and USA, but also all other European countries we didn’t go to this year.
I’ve read an interview in which it was stated that the writing process for Vulture Industries would be better described as a crooked process with song ideas and bits of music floating around and bumping into each other. Please, explain to our readers about how you create the awesome music of Vulture Industries.
As Bjørnar is doing most of the writing of music, this would be an educated guess, but since we know him so well it would have to be somewhat like this: Bjørnar is preparing his pork chop on the stove, the dog has had its walk, and all Bjørnar can think of is his next meal. When the meat is getting seared he comes to think of his latest input walking the dog – the sound of the Bergen Slow Train, the seagulls fighting over a dead rat, mongrels doing each other and the nice one-legged sailor Bjørnar calls his friend. He starts humming strange noises into his portable recorder, the meat gets burned, the dog gets the food, and Bjørnar goes off to record his latest influences. One year after he goes back to see what he came up with and somehow he manages to put all his extravaganza into producing these well known oddities he calls songs. That’s where the rest of us come into the game, strapping him to his ancient German Chair, trying to re-create what he has been putting together. We start off at full stretch and ease off as he becomes more and more agreed with our approach to the stuff. Then we record.
04 – Connected to the previous question, I believe that Vulture Industries’ music is very theatrical. Is it something intentional, something that you consciously or do you simply prefer to add and add more elements until you reach something that pleases you. Please, tell us about it.
I am not sure that the music itself is theatrical, though there of course are some elements of cabaret and such, but along with the lyrics and certainly the Turning Golem project, it definitely can be categorized as theatrical as a sum. When it comes to adding or withdrawing material from the projects we definitely don’t start out wanting to do a 9 or 12 minute prog song. Actually we try to narrow it down, but as the road turns up ahead of us it just gets more and more difficult not to extend the walk and try to discover what’s beyond. You never know until you’ve tried…
And now lyric-wise, the lyrical description for Vulture Industries places the themes as insanity, demons, madness, inner struggles. How important are the lyrics for the band? And also, what inspires the band when it comes to writing your original and interesting lyrics?
The lyrics are of course important, since the albums are more or less concept albums. What inspires the lyrics, again, would be a reflection of Bjørnar’s mind. We think he is trying to make a manifest for a new world order, and we are very anxious to see how the next theme will turn out.
You’ve signed to Blood Music this month (April, 2014). Could you tell us a bit about this? I know that “The Malefactor’s Bloody Register” on vinyl in 2015. Does this mean that you’ll leave Season of Mist?
We are definitely not leaving Seasons of Mist, which we are very proud to be part of, but the back catalogue is not on SOM. We very fond of LP as a format, and Malefactor is released by Dark Essence Records, along with Dystopia Journals, but only on CD. As with Dystopia, the LP production of Malefactor is licensed to a third party company, and Blood Music was very excited by our request to release Malefactor on LP, so there it is.
Vulture Industries has also released a fantastic video for the song “Lost Among Liars”. I believe it was designed by Costin Chioreanu (one hell of an artist, my all time favourite t-shirt design was the one he made for Sigh, it totally represents the band’s music and so does the video for Vulture Industries). How satisfied was the band with this video? Also could you care to explain the “meaning” of the video and if you plan on doing the same for future releases?
What can I say other than Costin is fantastic! And it seems he crawled out the Vulture ass or vice versa, because we have developed a very synergistic approach to whatever we do right now. Costin just does the right stuff, he just gets what we are doing. You should consider the outro of the video, which says “Music by Vulture Industries…story by Costin Chioreanu”. We think it sums up The Tower with its symbolisms and claustrophobic feel, but it goes far beyond that. You should really ask Costin this question. I think the video is amazing!
Like in any other relation, being in a band sometimes lead to discussions, disagreements, fights, etc., but Vulture Industries has managed to keep the line-up stable up to this day. What’s the secret for something so uncommon?
We live on a small rock in Norway, surrounded by even more rock and sea. We fight to get to the best fishing spots and to have the first shots on a flock of grouse, keeping our families fed, so when all this fighting is over and done, all we have left is the music. Of course some of us have musical diversions, but it all comes down to the Vulture pack. We do it together, and everybody has to be there, if not there would be no pack.
I’ve also read that you’re touring in Eastern Europe on May (you might have said something about it already). What are your expectations concerning this tour?
Eastern Europe is always very good for us, it seems like the vibe is right or something; this is really not unique for EE, we have found similar connections with the audience elsewhere, like the latest Paris gig for instance. But we have high expectations, really looking forward to the audible crowds, great food and atmosphere, nice people and of course some sun. It has been dark here in Norway for months now, so our cold-blooded bodies would do good with plus-degrees.
What does the band think about illegal downloads? Nowadays there even isn’t that excuse that you download to get to know the material, since the labels or the bands themselves puts the album or some songs on the internet for people to listen before the release. How do you feel over this? Is it, in your opinion, harmful not only for the labels, but also for the bands?
Illegal downloads is not what it used to be. Even Seasons of Mist is streaming our full length album on YouTube, and the commercial streaming services are here to stay. In Norway we have Wimp and Spotify, which we think is great. In theory. We’ll see if any of the income to the companies rains down on the owners of the art. I regularly use steaming services myself, discovering new and exciting bands, and can download old favourites legally. For the new and exciting bands I go out and buy the LP, so streaming legally or illegally has its upsides along with its downsides. We bring our LPs and CDs on tour, we have our own web shop, and we sell quite well, and I think if it hadn’t been for streaming and “illegal downloading” we wouldn’t sell half of what we do, not to mention all the good publicity. But the fact is you don’t get fat on selling CDs these days.
One silly question that I think every interview should have, just for the fun. Well, I’m obsessed, in a good way, with the show Seinfeld. There was an episode called “The Contest” in which they bet who can go the longest without masturbating. “Master of Your Domain” would be able to control the “urges”. If the same happened with Vulture Industries members, who do you think would be the “master of your domain” and why?
Good question. We love Seinfeld, and that episode is epic! The answer is simple: Tor Helge sleeps all day, doing recovery after all his mountain climbing and polar walks, and when it comes to the rest of us we are all too loose guns to make an equal match for TH.
And we reach the end of this interview. I’d like to thank you very much for taking your time to answer the questions. I really appreciate this. I’d also like to wish you and the band the best in the future. Do you have any last words for our readers?
Thank you for your sincere interest in our band, we hope to hear from you again!
Spring is upon us, so are the Vultures!May 4, 2014