Science Of Disorder - Interview
Science Of Disorder finally released the new album and it was definitely worth the wait. The same style influenced by Swedish death metal, same crunchy, dry guitars, same variety of vocals, brilliant rhythm section with appropriate proportions of double-bass drums, distorted bass, catchy melody lines, but better. I have enjoyed it a lot and I strongly encourage you to give it a go, too. I've also managed to send a lot of questions to Lord Pelthor (the guitarist) and he had to ask two other guys to help him with answering them all (Stéphane Grand - another guitarist and Jérôme Thomas - vocalist). Anyways, put on "Apoptose" in the background and enjoy all the latest news from the Swiss metal squad and I don't blame you if you feel a bit jealous because I've heard two extra tracks (and they're good). Oh, the perks of writing about my favorite music (because "journalist" is a bit too big a word here, haha)...
Hi, first of all thanks a lot for your time. It's been a while since we talked outside Proxima during your tour with Krisiun, Diabolical and Septicflesh in 2019 and I remember Stéphane already mentioned some material being written for the next album. Could you please give us chronological order (if you can recall) which tracks on the "Apoptose" are the oldest and which ones are the latest?
Jérôme Thomas: I worked on them all at the same time, so no time difference for me.
Stéphane Grand: I really can't remember the chronological order because I wrote songs throughout the year and it's very difficult to recall which is the first and the last. But I clearly remember "Crawling Chaos" was the first one we worked on together for "Apoptose".
I remember you mentioned that the album was basically ready for release in the first half of 2021. Can you share some details on what was happening with the material until its official release in September 2022?
Lord Pelthor: The post-covid period was a difficult period for the whole music industry, especially for the metal scene. After the lockdown, all bands on major labels released their albums and that was not a good idea to release it in 2021, but you're right, the album was ready for one year. At this time, we worked a lot on the communication, promotion, merchandising and now we are happy to release it in Sep 2022 under the label Black Market Music.
Black Market Music - how did you get in touch with them and what made you decide to choose this label?
LP: We had several opportunities in terms of labels, but as I told you, it was not easy to find the best one among the major ones and the underground scene. We already co-released an album with Black Market Music ("Private Hell" - 2018, co-release between Fastball Music and Black Market Music). They are from Switzerland and working hard to develop the band and we already have a self-confidence with Gaby (owner of Black Market Music).
The studio you recorded in (Downtone Studio) is the same where you recorded "Private Hell", the guitars still have that brandmark crunchy, dry tone, same with vocals, drums and bass, but few tracks have some extra effects, ambient sounds in the background - can you tell us some more how these ideas came around? Any new guitar effects or guitar models were used? Any other changes to equipment used for recording or for your live performances?
LP: We recorded this new album "Apoptose" with Drop (also known as the guitarist of SAMAEL, SYBREED) in the Downtone Studio in Switzerland. We were really happy about his work on the previous album "Private Hell" and we decided to work with him again on this album. The sounds of "Apoptose" keep the same DNA, keeping the old Swedish sounds and the modern approach. About the effects and ambient sounds, we tried to keep as raw as possible and we added some extra-effects directly into the studio with Drop. In the studio, we always did the same process by bringing different guitar models, using and testing several amps and effects and just letting the sound engineer make the best recipe. We are really lucky and grateful to him for sublimating this. Regarding live performances, we're just applying the best advice from GOJIRA's sound engineer (Johann Meyer) who said "less is more, just play as precisely as possible". On my side, I've found incredible amplifiers (PRS MT-15) and I just use a Zuul pedal from FORTIN to remove some extra dirty and energetic noises and I use ESP and SOLAR guitars on live. At home, I exclusively use NEURAL DSP plugins which are crazy.
Was the composing process similar to "Private Hell"? Was Jérôme writing any lyrics before hearing music this time or is Stéphane still not allowing it as they have to be inspired by the music? ;-)
SG: The composing process was exactly the same this time. Stéphane wrote songs and then he sent them to the guys to decide which ones we keep and which not. We don't know if Jerome wrote lyrics before. But we know he prefers to get the music before being inspired.
JT: Same process, I received the music, listened to it, put my voice and wrote the lyrics. Usually I have some ideas before and add them in the most appropriate song.
Has anything changed regarding who composes which lines for the album? Or are you equally contributing to each track?
SG: Nothing changed. Stéph composes the lines. It was decided like that a long time ago because he was the only one who has enough time for that.
Before the official release we got to see the video for piano version of 'Carrions' from "Private Hell" and for the single promoting "Apoptose" album - 'Rabid Dog'. And the latest video has just come recently - for 'Des Rêves Noirs'. Can you tell something about how these songs are chosen? How did you find Fog Artistics and do you expect this to be a long-time collaboration? Are there any other videos planned for this album?
LP: Effectively, we're always trying to be different or surprise the fans. During the lockdown, we were one of the first band to make an homemade video through a zoom conference (song 'Sickness' from the "Private Hell" album - https://youtu.be/lWLPfohtRM0), right after we released a piano version of 'Carrions' (https://youtu.be/fJh_L82zQmc) which were composed and played by our ex-drummer Baptiste Maier. That was also a challenge for us, to show how a death metal band can produce music with a piano and a singer. These two videos were realized by FOG Artistics and, as we were happy about the results, we made 2 others videos from the new album "Apoptose" ('Rabid Dog' - https://youtu.be/5xxIP1FuFmU and 'Des Rêves Noirs' - https://youtu.be/4Rsh01wmYAY). As I told you, we always try to surprise and the last song 'Des Rêves Noirs' is in French and the result is a success. Currently, we're preparing a new video clip with FOG Artistics and we also have several lyric videos which will be released next month. For us, lyrics and video clips are very important and we're lucky to work with professionals who made this possible.
Speaking of the last track mentioned - were you always planning to have a track in your native language? What are the lyrics about?
JT: Actually it was a last minute change. I had no idea what to do with this song, and the day before recording it I trashed everything I had done on it, as I was not satisfied. Finally I decided to go for French and recorded it directly like that. It has some Lovecraft colors in it, fans will recognize...
'Grind Me' track has a guest appearance of Julien from Benighted - how did you guys meet and how was this track created? From the lyrical side it seems to be more "gory", in the style of Benighted, was Julien involved in writing lyrics, too?
JT: Julien is a friend of Steph, and when the idea came to make a song with a guest, it was an obvious choice. I wrote all the lyrics, sent to Julien what I wanted where, and he did an amazing job on the first shot.
Have you had the opportunity to test the new tracks live? Which one do you enjoy playing the most? Which track is the best to start the moshpit (is it 'Hear Us' by any chance? ;-))
LP: We did a release party the day after the official release of "Apotpose" in our city of Lausanne, Switzerland. For this party, we played exclusively the songs or our new album "Apoptose". We played also a few songs of this album on last shows and the feedback of the fans was really nice. It's difficult for each of us to say which is our favorite song because they are all different. 'Kotlas Connection' is a good song to start, very dark and heavy, 'Rabid Dog' is going to be the most popular one, 'Des Rêves Noirs' sounds incredible in France because of the French lyrics. For the moment, we had really good feedback.
Obviously I have to ask about two tracks - 'Broken Queen's Empire' and 'Things That Bite' - were they recorded during the same session? How come they didn't end up on the album? Do you plan to release them in any form in the future?
LP: You're right, during the covid period, we recorded several songs and kept the best of them. We also keep these two songs for a special edition which will be released in 2023, for instance for a vinyl format or for an exclusive edition on a compilation. It's also a way to always have a few songs in advance for the future.
How did you get to meet the new members - Theo and Greg? What can we expect from them to bring to the band's sound and style?
LP: During the "Private Hell" tour, we had a session bass player and our drummer, who has several bands and projects, left us during the covid period. We had so much great time with these two guys who are professional musicians and brought different musical approaches to the band. Unfortunately, they didn't have the time to continue the adventure with the band and we're really happy to find Theo and Greg, who bring a youthful freshness and a lot of energy in the band.
Seth from Septicflesh designed the album cover - did you come up with the idea about it during your tour together? And what was the idea behind the title of the album?
LP: It's an incredible honor to have an artist like Seth on our album. We have kept in contact after the tour we made together in 2019 and he did a great job on our album "Apoptose". We also made 2 models of t-shirts based on this design that you can find in our store or during our concerts. We're still in contact and it's always a pleasure to see him when he comes with Septicflesh in Switzerland.
What are SoD's nearest plans? Any tours or shows?
LP: Since the release of "Apoptose", we have made several video clips with our video agency FOG Artistics and were focused on the promotion of the album. For 2023, we're trying to find a lot of concerts, whether it will be a new tour or festivals. Personally, it would be a pleasure to come back to the Eastern Countries where we had wonderful memories.
Any last message to the readers? Where can we get the latest news and band's merchandise?
LP: First of all, we would like to thank all new fans, followers who send us messages and positive waves for our project. We meet each time, many crazy persons on tour and that's always a pleasure to meet new faces. Special thanks also to all our old and loyal fans. We receive a lot of messages, especially for touring and we really hope to come back in your cities next year during the promotion of "Apoptose". On social medias, we're active on Instagram, Facebook and all these socials networks but it's more simple to go to our official website (https://science-of-disorder.com/) or our linktree (https://linktr.ee/scienceofdisorder) to stay tuned.
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