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Odradek Room - Interview, April 2013

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    Posted: 20 Apr 2013 at 1:33pm
In the Odradek RoomEnter Odradek Room - a Ukraninean progressive band, whose style masterfully blends death-doom and melancholic post rock. They released their debut album Bardo. Relative Reality in March, which has been received extremely positively by fans and critics alike. We have had a chat with frontman, guitarist and creative powerhouse, Artyom Krikhtenko, who discusses the making of the album and gives his views on songwriting and composition. Fans of sophisticated doom metal, read on.

Firstly, congratulations on the release of Bardo. Relative Reality. Are you excited about having released your debut album as Odradek Room?

Thank you. Yes, it is quite delightful for us. We've been waiting for so long, we've worked on the release so hard, and here it is, finally.

How has it been received by critics and fans so far?

It's been very well received so far. We've got very good reviews in press, and fans were satisfied as well. It seems like the album has found its listener.  

What can metal fans expect from the album?

I guess, it's always wrong to expect something in any situation. The expectation of something prevents us from seeing things the way they really are. That's why I'll just recommend listening to the music and then you'll see for yourself.

The music on the album is pretty eclectic yet quite focused. How would you describe your music in your own words?

It�s very hard to describe your own music, frankly speaking. The thing is that everyone takes it his own way, through the prism of his personal emotions, perception and life-experience.

Your music has been described as progressive. Do you agree with this description, and, if yes, in how would you say that your music is progressive?

I think it can be called progressive, yes. In my opinion, this can be seen in the affluence of artistic means, interweaving of styles and diversity of hidden motives in our lyrics.

Bardo. Relative RealityThere is a considerable doom metal element on the album. What is it about doom metal that attracts you as musicians?

Doom attracts us with its ability to create the atmosphere and the dramatic effect. It is also a good base for various experiments, both with sound and with other musical aspects.

Although complex, your music is also very emotional. How did you achieve this balance between the cerebral and the emotional?

Lyrics and music should complement each other in order to enhance the general effect. Music influences us emotionally, and lyrics make us dive into the process intellectually. It seems to me that the semantic load and the emotional part let one feel and understand some particular aspects more thoroughly. These aspects can thus be understood better because of the correlation and empathy which are achieved by music.   

The primary emotional vehicle seems to be melancholia and sadness. What is it about those types of emotions that make them attractive as modes of expression?

A conflict or a problem is the basis of these emotions. That is the reason why they are interesting to explore. I don't want my music to make people depressed, but I offer them a journey through my conscience. You can even call it an examination of some inner demons, if you like. In this album, the emotional involvement of the protagonist is revealed, and also his perception of reality as a projection of himself and his own emotions and feelings is shown.

What was the recording process like? Were there any particular challenges?

The process of recording was a very long a hard undertaking for us. We recorded the album in our little studio on our own.

As far as I understand, the album is partially inspired by The Book of the Dead. Can you tell us more about the underlying lyrical concept of Bardo. Relative Reality?

As I have already mentioned, protagonist's conscious and inner world, his attempts to understand the nature of things are described in the album. The protagonist meets his own materialized fears, sorrows and solitude, but fails to understand that all he sees is just a theatrical performance which he's showing to himself. The idea and the concept originates from the Tibetan Book of The Dead (whose actual title is The Great Liberation upon Hearing in the Intermediate State), but the images and the specifics are not the quotes from there.

The artwork is pretty surreal. Does it link up with the lyrics in any way?

In some way it does, yes. There was an image in the lyrics to 'A Painting (Digging into the Canvas with Oil)'. The character perceived the reality as a lifeless world picture, but then it fell to pieces and he saw that the picture had been 'painted' with his own coagulated blood and bandages (his own wounds), and there was a mirror behind them, so it means that he himself was the reality. So the artwork admonishes this 'twisted' picture is some way.  

'A Painting (Digging into the Canvas Oil)' courtesy of Hypnotic Dirge Records

Who made the artwork?

The artwork is based on a picture of a painter from St. Petersburg, Alyona Svetlitska. And the booklet I created by myself.

'Faded Reality' features some pretty crushing riffage in the beginning. How did you come up with that riffage?

Oh, unfortunately, I do not keep in mind the background history of every riff that I write.

Are there any particular bands that you found especially inspiring when you wrote the music for Bardo. Relative Reality?

I can't say that there were some bands that inspired us in a particular way. I'd say that a big cultural background, both musical and literary, served as an inspiration for us.

Turning to Odradek Room the band, can you outline your band�s history for those of our readers who are not familiar with you?

I wanted to create a band which combined 'extreme' music styles with mild and atmospheric ones. Only gradually my desire took a form of a band. First, we called ourselves 'The Splinters of Silence', but then we decided to change the band-name, because the old one seemed to be somewhat crude and immature. Moreover, it seemed very typical for a doom-metal band.  

How did you come up with the name 'Odradek Room'?

I'm a big admirer of Franz Kafka's creation. I believe that this image of a spirited bobbin and the story itself touch upon the aspects that I needed.

Where can people go for more information on the band, and where can your album be purchased?

You can find the latest information on the Hypnotic Dirge Records website. We will also provide you with the further information on our Facebook page.

Thanks for doing this interview, and best of luck with the album.

Thank you and good luck!

Purchase this at Hypnotic Dirge Records

Edited by Time Signature - 06 May 2014 at 9:08am
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