Interview with Vintersorg


1 ) You’re about to release your new album The Focusing Blur in 2004. Can you tell us a bit about it ?

V: Well, the album became a very diverse and complex episode in the Vintersorg continuance. It has a lot of different genres baked in, everything from really soothing ambient, to raging black metal. A lot of Prog and folk compositions, some very sombre and dark passages, heavy riffing, some nearly jazzy parts. A lot of the acoustic guitars to complete the over all energetic and intricate songs that are present on the album. Steve Di Giorgio’s fretless bass is swirling through the whole Cd as a very magic examination, and in his rendezvous with Asgeir’s(Borknagar, Spiral Architect) magnificent drum patterns the album got really groovy. So, we taken the basic substance of the Vitersorgian spirit and developed it into new shapes and formations that feel very fresh, but still very much Vinterorg. But this album is very hard to explain in words I guess, as it holds so many angles and different paths to explore. It’s an experience that has to be heard, to understand what I’m talking about actually. And we are very satisfied with the outcome of the recording, everyone are at the summit of their craft.

2 ) What is the concept of The Focusing Blur ? Science ? Astronomy ?

V: It’s about science and fate you could say if to put it blunt, as it’s so very hard to just narrow it down in a couple pf words. It’s about Man and Matter, mind and Body and our search for the absolute. When we think we’ve reach the edge of knowledge you can always dig deeper, when we’ve discovered the utter essence in any topic of what so ever we reach yet another crossroad, new paths opens and we can follow them. So what we see as the focus is actually more like a blur, the focus is just a temporary glimpse into the unknown for the moment. But I recommend people to visit the read the full story; it’s to complex to just spell it out in a sentence or three….

3 ) Why this title for the album ? It seems to be a good paradox which represents well the complexity of your music...

V: It’s a paradox and I think it represent the band, what we’re dealing with both lyrically and musically is a contradiction in some sense, we deal with so many contrasts between moods and actions that it seems quite bizarre to put it all on the same album , but somehow we have a uniting force that makes it float together and blend nicely, so it’s a paradox but yet again not…I really love philosophical mind quests and a good paradox is the ultimate philosophical questioning. And the title just seemed very suiting for this album!!

4 ) All your lyrics and your music are very well thought of. Nothing seems to be left at random. Where do you find your inspiration ?

V: In life in general I guess. I’m very interested in the existence of mankind and how we’re linked with the larger issues of cosmos, and I try to investigate my own existence on a daily basis, and out of that comes both words and tones, I know it sounds just “too” cliché, but it’s truly what I do, I can’t put in other words than that. So reading, spending time with my family, play music..etc…is the source that takes me to the soundscpaes..hehehe..

5 ) More than lyrics, you also write poems. Is writing a passion, a way to express your feelings,... ? Is it a necessity for you to write ?

V: Yes indeed, writing is also an important part on my life journey. It’s so liberating, you can express your emotions and people can’t really say that you’re wrong, well of course they can but they can’t shout louder than you and silence you opinions and emotions, it’s freedom in a very pure form for me. And playing with words is also very fun, I’ve always loved languages and a re a big fan of poetry..well..everything concerning twisting and turning the language into new and exciting shapes. And poetry is also a forum just to relax and express my romantic sides, it let me dwell freely on a subject, while my lyrics to music have a more sophistry behind it I guess. So writing is one of my greatest passions to conclude it

6 ) Isn’t the complexity of your lyrics an obstacle for your fans ?

V: Naah, I don’t think so. Of course it takes some time to dig into them and digest the topics and concept that are present. But I feel that the lyrics must be in synthesis with the music to build an oneness that can be comprehended in its full scale, and I think we’ve succeeded in that mission. And lyrics that are “deep” last much longer than the ordinary rock’n roll party lyrics that deals with babes and booze, I think that the lyrics have an equally important role as the music, why not use the potential of having meaningful lyrics when you can. Of course sometimes you maybe just want to hear the easy listening kind of thing at a party, but in the long run they tend to be very boring, at least in my world. So I don’t think that the audience see the lyrics as an obstacle, I think they like the way it is, at least I want to have that vision in my mind…hehehehe…

7 ) Why do you choose either to write in English either in Swedish ?

V: I’m a huge poetry fanatic, and I just love languages. So I really want to challenge myself and try to write interesting stuff. An to keep it interesting to myself I uses both Swedish and English as I like to write in both, and they give new oxygen to each other, after writing several lyrics in English it feel very nice to switch into Swedish , it keep the lyric writing fresh to me, and I like the way those language works. On the new album it’s only English as it’s a concept album, and you can’t switch language through the story, then the whole concept would get lost. But on the album after this one it’ll be a mixture again!!

8 ) Let’s talk about your music now : you change your style a lot between the first and the latest albums. Is it a natural evolution for you or do you justwant to explore new horizons ?

V: It’s a very natural process in the progression curve that I set out to follow when I first formed this band. The intention was to do fresh things in the genre and to myself, and if we would just do the same kind of album over and over again it wouldn’t be any meaning to continue. The goal was to develop the genre and ourselves, I used acoustic guitars and clear vocals, spiced up with Heavy metal riffs in “black metal” in 1993-94, then people laughed about it, but I knew what I wanted so I proceeded with my intentions. Some people thought that we would stay “Till Fjälls” forever, but that wasn’t the goal. Still a lot of that old Vintersorgian essence is still present, but we’ve just taken it into new directions. On the new album a lot of acoustic guitars and folk harmonies are very there, it’s a mixture of old and new, in a suitable way!!

9 ) Tell us about your side projects ? You are very creative in everything you do. What are your plans and why did you stop Otyg ?

V: I have several other bands and projects going, to explore other musical and lyrical sides of me. It’s very nice to have different things going on, it keep my spirit enthusiastic and curious for odd and interesting musical rendezvous. At the moment besides the new Vintersorg album that is released the 16/2 ’04 the new Borknagar album will be completed in the end of January and released in the spring. The 12/1 my other band Fission is starting to record our debut album called “Crater”, but it’ll take us some time to complete that one as we only have weekends to record on. I also have several other things on the side that I’m currently doing some demoing for; we’ll see what happens with that. And hopefully we can manage to do another Havayoth Cd in a not to far future. And I just got a son two months ago, so you see my schedule is more than packed!!!

10 ) I’ve heard you didn’t want to make concerts anymore. Why this decision ?

V: That’s not true. But as you understand it’s very hard to find any time to get on the road, and as I’m also studying full time to become a teacher it’s just very tough to make it work out. And that we’re only a two piece band doesn’t help either; we have to hire guys in every time we do a show. But we did some festivals ‘03, and we have some festival this year as well, check the Vintersorg site for more info.

11 ) What are your plans for the new year to come and what can we wish you ?

V: As I stated earlier, a lot of new recordings and releasing several albums. To have a very creative year I guess! It’s as simple as that.

12 ) Did you take any resolutions you intend to keep for 2004 ?

V: Nope. I don’t believe in the concept of making such ones. I know what I want to do with my life and for the moment I know how to get there, and composing and creating a lot of music is one corner brick in that, so I only promise myself to keep doing what I’m doing and progress in all aspects of the human Nature.

13 ) Well, I let you end this interview telling what you want. Nothing will be censored of course !
For my part, I thank you very much for your answers and I wish you the best for the new year to come!

V: I’m no good giving these last comments, so I can only recommend the readers to check out the new album that’ll be released in the February, and of course all my other bands as well…hehehehe….over and out!!