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Vielikan (Jan 2012)

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Conor Fynes View Drop Down
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    Posted: 01 Feb 2012 at 1:42pm
Vielikan is a progressive death metal band from a country one would not usually expect to be the home of a death metal band: Tunisia. Speaking with frontman Fedor Souissi, he gave his insights into the band's music, art, and the state of Tunisia.
How are you and the band doing?

We are very fine Conor! Our album is finally available world wide, yet
only digital, somehow I feel that Vielikan is now an "existing" band.
I feel that Vielikan isn't more only for Tunisia, and I am so glad to
see people order it, knowing that we got fans beyond our little
country is even more rewarding, especially for an unsigned band.

Where does the name 'Vielikan' come from?

"Vielikan" means "Giant" in Russian. You would also like to ask me why
I've named my band in russian, well lets say its because I'm half
tunisian, half russian, and I'm strongly linked with my russian roots.
For its meaning, the choice is yours, either our music is giant,
either we are four giants :-)

The question I ask every artist; how would you describe Vielikan's sound?

My goal is to make the listener surrounded by dark feelings, make him
modelise what he's hearing in his mind's eye. Our music is a gateway,
to reach oppressive and deep thoughts. Music is a nice tool to share
an emotion. Each songs contains many moods, as anger, sorrow,
nostalgia. The whole thing surrounded by darkness.

Death metal is a style that is plagued by thousands of bands across
the globe that often sadly sound too much alike. What do you think
sets Vielikan apart from the rest?

We all know that the Man can't create, as for the real meaning of
creation is : to make something with nothing, and that would be God.
We only produces. I tell you this, because an artist dont create, he
produce... He make an intelligent combination of what he knows, what
he might have seen.

"Create" music, is a combination of what songs you might like, what
sounds inspires you. This is why many bands sound much alike, they
dont make the right combination (others would say "the right
creation"), if I bring you a band whos members are huge fans of
Necrophagist, you will hear from them the same very style.

Vielikan is apart from the rest because we do the right mixture, we
bring the right inspiration, from brutal death, to extrem doom, to
groovy, to traditional russian music, most of all gitan folklore, and
when you're listen to Vielikan, you'll might be refered to some other
bands (as any band you listen to), but the combination we're doing
make our music unique. I am not divine to create something new without
bringing a mixture, but I am intelligent enought to being unique in
blending what I know. Every band, every music you know, is a blend
from other musics. The right question is : is this band doing an
intelligent combination? If yes, this will make an unique band. The
other question is : is this band corectly promoted and hugely
financed? If yes you will get an "Opeth fame" :-)

The most difficult part when you're working in a band, especially in a
metal band, is the promotion and finances. Making music, is the most
easy part.

Some people would say that music is only "abstract" and "inspiration"
as if the guy composing a song casted a spell from nowhere. This is
total bullsh*t, music is based on logic and even rules.

In my musical travels as a metalhead, the only other Tunisian metal
band I have heard is Myrath. What is the state of the Tunisian metal
scene? Are there any bands (besides yourselves!) from Tunisia that you
would recommend to metalheads abroad?

As I said, a band need to know how to blend its knowledge to compose a
song, then being corectly promoted and financed. This is Myrath. Here
in Tunisia we've got many bands, with unique sound, and hard work, but
they are not promoted as they should be, and they are not financed as
Myrath are. Vomit The Hate (technical death), Dead Moon (Heavy
thrash), Anas Abid (now in France working with his new death metal
band : Bringer of the 7th Plague), Flagellation (Black metal), Apostol
(Melodic death), 13 Days Later (Deathcore), are bands working and
doing powerful and devastating metal, but as Vielikan, they will not
get the right fame if they are not promoted. Metal shows here in
Tunisia are not frequent (one concert every 2 months if we are lucky,
in the whole country), but there's enought metal heads and fans to
make you feel you're a band, working for people loving your music.
Bands here in Tunisia have many difficulties to spread their talents,
this is because we are above the underground scene. No promoters, no
concerts, no studios.

This remind me of what Elyes from Myrath said in a recent french
interview, "in Tunisia there's no real bands, and even if there's a
concert, 99% of Tunisian metal heads come to see only Myrath", sadly
my buddy is a little wrong, maybe because he forgot what Tunsian metal
scene is, and what bands we got here. Even if they're not financed or
promoted as they are, our extrem metal scene is strong, few bands yes,
but all unique.

There is certainly a proggy element to Vielikan's sound. How are songs
written; how do they go from an idea, to a finished composition? On
that thought, how do you get ideas in the first place; what inspires

The most important fact for me when I write a song is the lyrics. I
already know what's the theme, but how to write it down? And how to
make an harmony within words, and verses? Step by step I finally get
the result I want. I didn't had the choice, i was forced to write
proggy ang long songs, because I follow my lyrics, I dont put that
riff or that melody just because its "cool", no, this will not make
coherence between words and the music. And as I told you, I am not a
spellcaster (I would like to!) I pretty much believe that art is based
on logic.

Taking a look at the lyrics from your debut full-length 'A Trapped Way
For Wisdom', the themes that Vielikan deal with are quite
sophisticated for death metal; revolving around an often graphic
depiction of mental strain, as well as ambiguous religious themes.
What can you say about the lyrical content of Vielikan; is there a
concept here?

I do not want to reveal what messages are behind every songs, but,
everyone will get its own understanding about each song. Obviously "A
Trapped Way For Wisdom" is a concept album, the main subject is how
emotions interfers with our reason, and the trapped way for wisdom is
to reject all emotions. Lyrics are based on the struggle between
"Faith" and "Logic" and how the Man make his choices. You could laugh,
but some songs talk even about Love.

What prog and metal bands have you been listening to lately?

Well... to be honest I didnt listened metal for some months :-( But
the last band I became adicted to was Ataraxie (Extreme doom from

Lastly; what advice would you give to other musicians out there who
are trying to get their music out in the world for listeners?

I think I've already said the most important part when working in a
band. The right songwriting, logical combinations, real promotion,
save money, and most of all : patience... Also, it's vital for the
band to have audio and visual professional quality.

Of course all these steps should be followed but I forgot to say; a
musician, in a band, is nothing if he dont practice EVERY DAY, and
dont jam AT LEAST one time a week.

Any last words?

I would just like to thank you for this interesting interview, and
thank all our fans for their supports, if anyone is reading this
interview and dont know Vielikan, just come across our MySpace page,
it'll be cool.
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