I talked with Steffen Kummerer and Linus Klausenitzer about the new release of Obscura, Akroasis and also other band’s stuff.
Hi Linus and nice talking with you again, hello to you too Steffen, how things are going?
Linus: Nice to talk with you again as well. With Obscura we are having a very good time with our new album right now. In April we hit the road again with mostly new songs and the crowd reactions were incredible. I can’t wait for the summer festival season now.
You begun this year with the release of a new album, ”Akroasis”, looks like the album got positive feedback, tell me about the recording of it and the place you recorded this album.
Linus: That’s true. Fans reactions and reviews are amazing so far. Making this album took a lot of time and energy. It’s great to see now that it was worth it. The song writing and preparation time before we had entered the studio was longer than ever before. We wrote a lot of music at home, had Skype sessions and met from time to time to discuss ideas. Then we worked out different versions of each song to get the best results possible. I have 15 guitar pro files from Perpetual Infinity on my computer for example. Before the main production we recorded demos for each song and also discussed those a lot. We recorded the drums in the Dreamsound studios in Munich. The rest of the studio work was made in the Woodshed Studio of V Santura again. He had a very important role on every Obscura album. He is a working machine, he has very creative ideas and is helpful in every possible situation.
What is the story around ”Akroasis”? Is there something about mankind, philosophy maybe?
Steffen: The whole record is based on the third installment of a four alsbum long lasting concept we started with „Cosmogenesis“ in 2009. While the first album basically dealt with the initial big bang of our existence, “Omnivium” from 2011 hold the idea of evolution. “Akroasis” shows the idea of developing your own consciousness divided in the three entities astrophysics, philosophy and religion/theology. The idea was once again wrapped within the idea of the world harmonics, an old Pythagorean thought that mentions that everything has a certain harmonic relation to each other.
Getting a little in the past, you debuted in 2006 with ”Retribution”, have passed ten years since this release was out, is there a difference between the sound of ”Akroasis” and ”Retribution”?
Steffen: “Retribution” was recorded and released in 2004 already and saw a first rerelease in 2006. Within this decade the band changed from being an underground band with first touring and studio experience into an internationally respected touring act reaching multiple chart positions all over the world. As a writer, performer and producer those long years on the road, in studios and studying shaped my knowledge a lot. Comparing records hardly gives them justice – each record is a snapshot in time you barely can compare at all. Although, ideas that we started in the early years are still present – especially the riffing, lyrical approach and traditions such as instrumental tracks, clean singing or even working with string arrangements.
You Linus have joined Obscura in 2011, how was this experience joining this band? Aswell in 2014 you have joined Alkaloid, how do you compare this band with Obscura?
Linus: For me they are individual bands. Of course you can hear the Obscura influence because some of our band members also wrote much music for Obscura but the basic musical ideas behind both bands are divergent. That’s why I use different basses and try to use a variety of sounds on my bass. I enjoy this a lot.
Obscura’s music is based on philosophy, especially focusing from the German philosophers ideas, what are your favorite ones?
Steffen: These days mostly Schelling, Goethe and lately I go into Feuerbach. In general I like the idea of axioms of the human nature that can be translated to a macro or meta perspective. The grand, big and universal thought so to say.
”Cosmogenesis” and ”Omnivium” are the albums based more on philosophy by Friedrich Schelling…
Steffen: Schelling just had his first step within my lyrics on “Omnivium” and now on “Akroasis”. The idea of the “Weltseele” is based on both, Schellings work “von der Weltseele” and a rarely known poem by Goethe.
When is comes about favorite bands/ musicians, what are your favorite bands that inspires you both?
Linus: That’s hard to answer. I don’t realize my inspirations myself mostly. I guess it is a mix of all bands that I listen to and people that I make music with.
Steffen, you are also the founder of the Black/Death metal band Thulcandra.
Steffen: Thulcandra was founded in 2003 and released three full length records up to this date. The band is well established within the underground scene and gains more fans every year. Thulcandra will stay an underground act playing only selected shows when we feel the concert is right for the band. The music overall differs completely from Obscura.
You covered a few shows with Death DTA, you were also confirmed playing at Brutal Assault fest, where else would you like to play, for example in countries like Egypt, Israel, Indonesia maybe?
Linus: Straight after the DTA tour we flew to Indonesia to play at the Hammersonic Festival. Israel is also on the live dates list this year. We are planning a lot of tours and single shows in typical touring regions like Europe and the United States but also at more exotic places. Just check our website regularly or sign to our newsletter to keep updated.
The name of the band as Obscura was taken from the Gorgut’s album with the same name, indeed Gorguts is one of your influences.
Steffen: The album back then had a huge impact especially since it sounded very unique. I have to admit that I didn’t understand the entire album in the first place, it sounded simply extreme but at the same time one of a kind. Two years ago Luc Lemay and me have been on tour with Death DTA and it was a pleasure meeting him and discuss about music during the whole trip.
Do you have favorite songs from each Obscura albums, if yes, mention some of them.
Steffen: Retribution – Hymn to a nocturnal Visitor, Cosmogenesis – Incarnated, Omnivium – Septuagint, Akroasis – Perpetual Infinity.
What are the future plans of Obscura, beside touring?
Linus: We have just released guitar and bass tab books for our new album Akroasis. Now we want to work on Obscura’s first drum book. You can also expect a new video clip soon. Steffen and I have some ideas for a new album already that we will work as soon possible.
How do you see your fans and to quit this interview, what message do you have for them?
Linus: Thanks to everyone for your support! If you like our music it would be an honour to me to see you all on the road!
Thank you both for this interview, it was my pleasure. Cheers!
Linus: Thank you!