Interview with King of None

Interview with King of None

- in Written interviews

What’s the story behind the title “In the Realm”?
The title is a reference to both ‘being in the realm’, i.e. in the kingdom, and the saying ‘in the realm of’ which in this case alludes to stoner rock as a genre. The former refers to the flow state achieved when we play together and the latter to the album’s way of expanding further our sound within the stoner rock genre.

How do you think your sound has evolved from your earlier EPs to this album?
With this album, our sound is less bound by genres and more experimental, while still being a coherent totality. This has been the path since our first self-titled EP. Comparing riff-based songs like ‘Lizards for Brains’ or ‘Snail Trail’ with more atmospheric tracks like ‘Thousand Light Year Stare’ or ‘Low’n’Slow’ you will find that there are a wider range of moods and emotions represented on the album than on previous releases.

What role did each band member play in crafting the songs for “In the Realm”?
The basic gist of our song-writing process is for Juha to write the music and lyrics to the point where we’re able to tackle the song at the rehearsal room. Some riffs and chord progressions are usually contributed by Aleksi or Juho and everyone has a say in the final arrangement: sometimes parts are changed, added or removed in a very organic process. The end result represents the entire band’s vision for the song. A notable exception to this pattern on this album is ‘For the Ride’ which is written by Aleksi with some minor additions by Juha.

What were some key influences for the lyrical themes explored in the album?
Our lyrics are inspired by our experiences, relationships, emotions, but also literature and other media we consume. Words and the English language is a great source of inspiration: a single word or combination of words might be the start-off point or maybe even be the song title. The word might have some meaning imbued, which is then fleshed out using the underlying song structure. During the writing process new meanings might emerge on different levels. On this album there are themes of self-reflection and dealing with strong emotions, the vastness of the universe in relation to time, isolation, desolation, the feeling of returning home, and different states of mind.

How did your partnership with Argonauta Records shape the album’s release?
We were thrilled to hear that Argonauta Records wanted to work together with us to release the album. They have been helping bands and releasing great albums for a long time, so we jumped on the opportunity to work with them. Gero from Argonauta helped us out on many aspects of the album, including on deciding the singles, printing and pressing the physical copies, public relations and so on. Musically and art-wise we have had free reign, which we appreciate very much.

What makes “In the Realm” stand out within the stoner rock genre?
The foremost challenge with this album was to create a sonically pleasing totality with songs that represent the wide spectrum of modern stoner rock. We’re hoping that we achieved this through all the effort we put into making this album. Production-wise we have never gone this far in recording and releasing music. There are splashes of prog elements and psychedelia sprinkled throughout the entirety with some atypical song structures, blazing solos and other surprises.

How important are visuals like album cover art in enhancing the album experience?
In a world where most people consume media and experience art through their phones, the album cover art and other visuals are an integral part of the album experience. But if the riff is a banger, it’s a banger, no matter the visuals. On this album we commissioned Steven Yoyada (IG: @steven_yoyada) to make the artwork, because we had past good experiences working with him. And while visuals are important, we recommend people experience music in a live setting, which is a feast for all the senses!

How has your Finnish background influenced your music?
All the members grew up on a steady diet of Finnish rock and metal bands, which can definitely be heard in our brand of stoner rock. This might lead us to be a bit more on the technical side compared to some of our peers in the genre. The Finns are known to be a quiet people, but we’re pretty opinionated and confrontative when it comes to interaction within the band. Often this leads to better end results, though!

What’s your take on the current state and future of the stoner rock scene?
The stoner rock scene in Finland is in great shape, with notable releases and shows happening regularly in all the larger cities. Small and medium-sized stoner rock/doom metal specific festivals (Aavikko and Desert Hel to name a few) have also appeared to complement the larger metal/rock festivals that have been around for a longer time in Finland. The future’s looking good with new talented bands rising in the scene and dedicated people working together to maintain the worship of riffs and heaviness.

What do you want listeners to take away from “In the Realm”?
Because of the variety of moods and emotions expressed on the album, it’s an easy album to listen through all the way. Every song was worthy of being released as a single. We’re hoping that each listener finds something to embrace or relate to, be it a riff, a mood or a line from the lyrics.

Are there recurring motifs in the album that hold personal significance?
Relationships and self-reflection are recurring themes when it comes to the lyrics on the album. The lyrics can be interpreted on different levels, more literally or with several layers of meaning and connections.

What milestones or moments of growth have shaped King of None as a band?
Playing larger shows has always been a blast! Getting new opportunities has been a huge motivator for the group as a whole. The entire history of the band can be seen as a growing experience for each of us individually. Music for us is a uniting experience and having played together for such a long time with the same line-up, there’s something bigger than simply the music itself that can be heard when you hear us play live and in the music we release.

What’s next for King of None after the album release? Any upcoming projects?
Currently we’re focusing on playing shows in Finland and practicing new material. We have taken large steps regarding the non-musical aspects of playing in a band and will continue doing so, in order to release more music and play shows!

If you really would like to support Antichrist, you can just Share our article.
You can also support Antichrist by sending a couple bucks to cover some webhosting expenses.
=>> PayPal


About the author

As a passionate devotee of heavy, psychedelic, avant-garde and progressive sounds, my enthusiasm for music journalism has been steadily building since 2020. My writing has encompassed a broad spectrum, ranging from in-depth analyses of album releases to illuminating interviews with exciting new artists on the scene. During my leisure hours, I relish attending live concerts and delving into the thriving local music scene in my Zurich community.

Related Posts