Musicscan: On facebook you state “Sick, dark and horrid extream metal from Norway.” – which bands you feel connected with when it comes to the Norwegian scene? How did you get in contact with the style you are playing, and what impressed you, when you discovered it?
Obliteration: A lot of the new bands on the scene, Condor, Mion's Hill, Reptilian, Diskord, Deathhammer etc but also the older bunch like Darkthrone, Audiopain, Aura Noir, Mayhem, Vomit, Burzum, Infernö, Enslaved, etc..
It evolved naturally into the style we are playing now. It's been a long, dark and gruesome path, but it's been fantastic. We have dived deeper in the vast musical treasure chest, and we are focusing to be 100% in touch with the atmospheres that emerges when you put notes together.
Musicscan: Relapse recommends your band for fans of “Dismember, Autopsy, and fresher meat like Miasmal and Necrowretch.” – do these comparisons fit from your point of view? What separates your band from them?
Obliteration: Not quite, even though Autopsy has been very important to us. If feel that we have a quite different vibe and a much colder atmosphere than these bands. A more black metal vibe in a way, while some of our riffs can remind of those bands. But the typical swedish scene has never been that important for us, Darkthrone's soul side journey is the best swedish death metal album, hahaha. Productionwise the only band we are close to of the above mentioned bands are Autopsy. Mental Funeral is the perfect death metal album.
Musicscan: People who get introduced to Obliteration will be impressed by your “different” approach to extreme and nihilistic music I guess. What do you think about this thought, and what is your approach towards music and being Obliteration in general?
Obliteration: HEHE, maybe, while others will hate us for it. Our approach and music isn't for everyone, but it's brings another dimension to the music, that we do everything ourselves, record ourselves etc. To make a long story short: we believe that the sound and production of an album is just as important as the music, and when you play raw, dark and obscure music, the production has to reflect this. The production also creates the atmosphere that really can make an album stand out, be something unique etc.
Musicscan: To quote Relapse again: they speak “true heirs to a long line of gritty Scandinavian death metal. Black Death Horizon both invokes the classics of the genre and puts a new and fresh spin on the sound to make it their own.” Do you like this summary, and is this close to what you are heading for?
Obliteration: Yes, it's not far from the truth. It's very important to add a personal touch and something fresh, even though we are totally into the old school way of doing things. But I want to argue that we are not mere death metal, Obliteration is so much more.
Musicscan: I like to think your style of play is based on intuition, gut instinct and impulsiveness, but less on planning. True? How do you go about writing your songs? Does most of the influence come from personal experiences and moods, or from listening to similar bands?
Obliteration: Very true. The songwriting and the atmosphere within the band has a life of it's own, which we can only follow. No control, no rules, no cheating. Songwriting can happen in so many different ways, ether is starts with a riff, or a lyric. Sometimes someone in the band has figured out the most of a song before a rehearsal, other times we jam until a track emerges.
We are very inspired by so much different music, I think similar bands are very uninspiring, even if I'm a fan or not, but influence often comes from more unexpected sources. This time around we've focused mostly on atmospheres and feelings, we just wanted a song to sound evil etc.
Musicscan: Btw: Who is listening to Obliteration? What kind of people you see and meet at your shows? What are they telling you about their impressions? And what do you want people to leave with with your songs?
Obliteration: I have no idea. Fuck-ups I guess, haha. Metal and punk people, people that are attracted to darkness.
And it seems like many of the have very different impressions of our music. What I want the listener to learn? I can't answer that, it would be unfair to the listener. And I don't think like that, we make music that lights a spark within us, fuck everybody else.
Musicscan: Black Death Horizon is a pretty challenging and self confident record. It is intensive and stands somehow outside competition due to the fact you are not following trends. What is your view on the album?
Obliteration: I think it's an album that reflects the state of mind and within us in the band right now( death reflects us) . It's a cold and cynical record. It is fast, and its old school, but it doesn't sound like anything you've heard before. It's fresh and intense, and rather dark. I don't know, like all men I have troubles describing my feelings. Because music is feeling and our music is our feelings. But I like you assessment, I think you're onto something.
Musicscan: As I already said a strong part of the sound of your band is about feeling and gut instinct I think. Of all the songs you’ve chosen to be on your new record what song do you feel is the most representative of all the facets of the band and of what you want Obliteration to be known for?
Obliteration: Good question. Perhaps Goat Skull Crown. It's includes most of the many faces that are Obliteration. But the same goes for Ascendance ( Sol Invictus ). The song that works best live in in my opinion is Transient Passage. The energy is close to something out of this world.
Musicscan: Are there specific aspects on Black Death Horizon that stand out in your mind, or aspects that have an inner meaning to you you would like to share with us?
Obliteration: There are several things, but I can mention the overall lyrical connection: the end is upon us, apocalypse is now. Give or take.
Musicscan: Do you care about fitting into a certain scene or genre? I would not think so…
Obliteration: We fit into the Norwegian extreme metal scene, were you can do what the fuck you want.
Musicscan: With the direction of Obliteration heading a certain way and listeners / fans growing with you over years and releases, do you feel the fans can now relate to what you are feeling or at least understand what you are trying to tell them with your music?
Obliteration: Yes I think so. It's not rocket science, I think the atmospheres and frustrations within our music speaks to a certain type of people, a certain type of freaks. Let go of your mind, unleash the madness, feel the darkness.
Musicscan: Last words?
Obliteration: the Gods die, unable to create order or balance.