Interview with Feannag

Interview with Feannag

- in Written interviews

Can you tell us about the origins of Feannag and how the band came together?
Feannag has started about 4 years ago. I had some experience in sound engineering so it was easy for me to start recording first riffs and make some arrangements. I presented my creations to Albin (I’ve known Albin whole life and I can say that partially I came over to Edinburgh for his invitation). Albin bought bass some time ago and I asked him if we can make something together. He was happy to do this and this is the beginning of Feannag really…

What inspired the choice of the band name “Feannag” and its connection to the Gaelic language?
You know, first of all we went through all bloody Sumerian demonology to find name that would suit the music. I wasn’t really happy with it. We knew the name is supposed to be dark and represents something related to death. So “Crow” came naturally but there were 100 of bands called like that. So, I thought that why not to find something in Celtic language. We live in Scotland so why not? And this is how I found Feannag in Gaelic. It sounds great and I really like it. I told this Albin and he was happy with it as well.

How has your previous experience in sound engineering and band recording influenced the creative process in Feannag?
It helped a lot. First of all, I knew how to use DAW and make some drums arrangements. I bought Superior Drummer 3 and a lot of midi packs and I started working with them. Guitars finally were recorded totally analog. So, experience in recording definitely helped.

Could you share some insights into the recording process of your debut album, “Throne,” and the challenges you faced during its production?
To be honest the album was recorded several times. I started with guitar processor Kemper, then I bought EVH 5150 and started experiment with impulse responses. There was always something missing in the sound I was looking for until finally I bought Mesa cab and that was it!
It took a lot of time and effort to record it all but it was worthy.
Also work on Pawel’s vocals was challenging. I was trying to get the best from him. It was a hard work but I think he did a fantastic job.

What motivated you to pursue a more brutal and black metal-oriented sound for “Throne” after Kris left the band?
To be honest the thought behind the band from the beginning was to play brutal and melodic in death/black metal style. I believe Kris influences and his riffs made the project softer. So we had a few brutal parts of songs and few totally different in his style. We were even considering changing the name of project. When I found out that he cannot make it anymore I had chat with Albin and we quickly made a conclusion that we supposed to go back to the original death metal style. Same night I recorded first riffs to Which of the Twain was God, haha…..

How did you come across Pawel as your vocalist, and what made his vocal style a perfect fit for Feannag?
I’ve known Pawel for a few years but he left Edinburgh and moved to Preston. We lost some contact for a while but when project had few instrumental versions of songs, I decided to send couple songs to him. We had a chat and he told me that he was a vocalist in black/death metal band Mizm. I asked him if he wouldn’t like to record something for us but he was busy with the band. I decided that my vocal will be used and started to work on lyrics. However not long time after Pawel contacted me and he said he wanted to join the project/band. When we had few lyrics, he came to Edinburgh and we recorded “No obedience…”. I was really happy with his vocal character. We worked hard on it. Pawel has powerful and aggressive vocal and, in my opinion, it suits Feannag music perfectly.

Can you elaborate on the experimentation you mentioned with sound during the recording process? How did it contribute to the overall atmosphere of the album?
I as said before I was experimenting a lot with guitar sound. Kemper, impulse responses and finally full analog sound with EVH and Mesa. Albin was also experimenting a lot with Helix to find a proper bass sound. We were trying to achieve brutal sound with raw sounding guitars and “fat” bass. Definitely the sound production made the atmosphere we wanted to achieve. Generally, brutal and punchy sound with black melody as well as Sumerian/ Egyptian influences.

“Throne” has received positive feedback in the local death/black metal community. How does it feel to see your work resonate with listeners?
It is amazing feeling. We were totally surprised about the feedback. We didn’t expect it even we knew that we recorded a good album. The feedback from listeners motivates us to work harder on the promotion of the album. All the interviews, reviews of the album make us super motive as long as proud of our creation.

How would you describe the overall theme or concept behind “Throne”? Are there any particular influences that shaped the album’s lyrical content?
Antichristian influences are obvious. However, we wanted to add our own approach to this concept. Occultism, philosophy of Left Hand Path or pagan influences played vital role in the concept of the lyrics. I can’t deny that place where we born was important as well. Poland is a religious country and we all experienced what this mean.
I, myself, belong to few atheistic groups where we discuss antitheist/theist concept. I guess this had also some impact on lyrics.

As a studio project for now, do you have any plans to expand Feannag into a full live band in the future? How has the response to the album influenced these plans?
Absolutely, our main goal is to find a drummer and second guitarist. We really would like to present our songs for the public live. Unfortunately, the death metal scene in Scotland is small so it is difficult to find the drummer especially.
Yeah, I hope the good feedback of the album will let us find right people. Ricky from Moshville Radio made a great promoting job for us (thanks Ricky!). We had already some contacts with drummers but from abroad. Kind of difficult to make it.
Also recently I met Kendo from Brainbath and George from Death Kommander and we had a great discussion and they know the local scene well so that might help to find the drummer.

Can you share any upcoming projects or future plans for Feannag? Are there any new releases or collaborations on the horizon?
I think it is a bit too early to start making new album. We are fully focused on the promotion and exercising the songs we would like to play live. I think I start record something in September/October. I really like the rainy, dark weather here in this time. It is gives me certain atmosphere I love when I compose. Right now the weather is really nice and sunny, it doesn’t combine well with Feannag… hahaha…
I never thought about collaboration with other bands yet. Maybe if Feannag will become more known some opportunity will appear. Right now we are really busy with promotion and you know, we all have normal work, so time is limited. We will see. Unless, Behemoth or Mgla will contact us then we will definitely find the time for it… hahaha

How do you see Feannag evolving in terms of musical direction and creative exploration in future releases?
You know, right now it is difficult to say. There will be definitely Feannag style. Hard punch, dark melodies. We will add some new flavours to our sound to make it better and more epic for sure. If there will be possibility maybe we will go to studio. We will see. I will definitely buy some new equipment to my studio room.

Has the metal scene in Edinburgh and Preston influenced your music and the development of Feannag in any significant way?
To be honest death metal/black metal scene in Edinburgh or in Scotland generally, is small. There are some great bands like Brainbath, Death Kommander, Penny Coffin end few others but generally in here, death core rules.
Our main influences are from Poland. We were growing up listening bands like Behemoth, Vader, Decapitated, Azarath, Infernal War, Trauma and many others. They are our main influences, but also bands like Nile, Rotting Christ, Scandinavian metal scene…. I could spend hours talking about it.

What are some of the most memorable experiences or milestones you’ve had as a band so far?
I would say realising the first album. The night we have done it and the first great review two hours after. Amazing feeling. That would be the one but interview with Ricky Fleming for Moshville Radio was a great experience as well. He played us in his radio few weeks in the row. He made us proud and maybe opened some doors for the band. I will always call him secret member of the band… hahaha…

How would you like listeners to experience and interpret your music? What emotions or thoughts do you hope to evoke through your compositions? Thank you for your time!
We give total freedom to interpret the music as the listeners want. We want people enjoy the music, like we enjoy listening to the music bands we like. Our album is very eclectic in my opinion so many listeners can find something they like. Punch, energy, melodies. All is there.
Thank you so much for the interview and opportunity for a band promotion. It was a pleasure to answer the questions. Stay Antichrist!!

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