Interview with Black Abyss (October 7, 2004)

1. Hi, first off I just want to congratulate you on your new album. To new fans could your please fill us in on the history behind it all?

Andy - O.K. - Black Abyss is making music since 1990, in 1992 a first 4-Track Demo was recorded. In 1997 the first CD called "Why" was recorded. After that independent release we signed a deal with Sub-Zero-Records in 1998 and recorded our second CD called "Land Of Darkness". But then Sub-Zero could not release the CD because they lost their Distributor! So we searched for a new Label and signed up with B.O. Records and releaseed the album. The album had a lot of good reviews and was a great succes for us. After some problems with the Line-up we went in the studio to record our third album called "Angels Wear Black", but during the recording our label got insolvend and we had the choice: quit recording or finance it on our own. So we decided to do the second, and had the same problem again: Looking for a label! We are very happy that we could sign a deal with massacre records and here we are: "Angels Wear Black"!!

2. How has your new album been received by the media?

Andy - We are happy with most of the reviews we recieved from the media; Some are not happy with the sometimes different sound of the songs, but that’s the problem of the break we had during the recording. But most like the songs and gave us a positive feedback!

3. I know artists are not happy to categorize their music, but how would you describe your music to an outsider?

Andy - Powermetal with no "squeeze my balls"-voice and a good mix between melodical and thrashy elements!
Andi - Timeless Heavy Metal.

4. Where does your inspiration come from, both musically and lyrically?

Andy - That’s a little bit different for all of us; Stefan, who is our "creative head" has favourites like Iron Maiden and Iced Earth for example, I am impressed by a lot of things like old-school Thrash- or Death Metal bands, but also things like Running Wild or Slayer!

Andi - My musical taste is also very broad. I grew up with old school Metal stuff like Iron Maiden, Motorhead, Exodus and Slayer. In the meantime I like bands from almost every Genre, e.g. Morbid Angel, Tool, Queens Of The Stone Age, Death, Vicious Rumors, Ministry, Machine Head, Carcass, Kyuss, Down, Meshuggah, The Mars Volta, Nevermore and so on.

But when it comes to songwriting of course we try not to be influenced too much by the stuff we’re listening to, as you want to try to create something more or less “new” (althought that’s very difficult). In the end we don’t care what it sounds like, if we like it.

The lyrical influences for Stefan are very often the things that happen in his life.

5. What topics do you deal with in your lyrics and why?

Andi - As mentioned above a lot of the lyrics on “Angels Wear Black” deal with things that happened in Stefans life and the feelings he has or had about them. The time of the recordings was pretty tough for him. That’s probably why the lyrics are mostly “dark”. In fact they’re quite personal, with some exceptions like “Dark Legacy” and “When Angels Wear Black”. 

6. Who has produced and mixed the album, and are you pleased with the end result?

Andy - The album was produced and mixed by Dieter Roth. We are happy with the sound, it could be better, but we had the problems with our label during the recording, so we think that’s the best we could do!

7. Who has done the artwork? And how important do you feel it is to have a great cover?

Andi - The Artwork was done by a friend of mine called Ali Reza Bakhshandeh. He studied grafic design and before I joined Black Abyss, we played together in a band.

To us a “good” album cover is very important, but it’s very difficult to deal with five different tastes within the band and so it is always a little compromise for everyone of us.

8. Do you have any touring plans?

Andy - Yes, we are on Tour with Exciter from 08.10. - 17.10. in several german citys and some citys in the Netherlands, Belgium and Switzerland!

Andi - We’re already very “Excited” ;-) We’re very, very happy to have the opportunity to go on tour with such a legendary band and I’m sure that we’ll have a lot of fun.

9. How do you feel about the co-operation with your label, and are you satisfied?

Andy - Yes, we are really happy with Massacre Records! They are doing a lot for us - things like the tour or our merchandise, they help everywhere they can!

Andi - At the moment Massacre is the perfect label for us. We got the impression that they really believe in us and they did a great job up to now.

10. The internet is a very important source for many metal fans ? how do you use the internet and how important is it for you and other bands?

Andy - Oh yeah! - For our band one of the most important things! Our homepage has a lot of visitors, so we have a good platform to give our fans the newest information about our band! I think there is no way to get more actual infos than the internet!

Andi - Personally I’m using the internet for quite a long time and I can’t imagine to organize concerts or to keep in touch with friends of mine all around the world without the internet anymore. It’s a great thing and a chance for smaller bands like us to get fans “worldwide”.

11. How do you see the metal scene at the moment?

Andy - I think there is a good scene in the moment, not like in the 80's, but there are still a lot of very loyal people, who help the bands by buying the albums and don't copy everything from the net! - and they are the best fans of all!

Andi - To my mind the metal scene has never been as exciting as it is now. There is such a diversity and so many bands making great music that I’m very happy to be part of that scene.

12. To finish things off - could you pls. make a all-time Top 5 or sort of the 5 most important albums in your opinion?

Andy -

  1. Iron Maiden - Number of the Beast

  2. Running Wild - Death Or Glory

  3. Metallica - Kill'em All

  4. Death - Spiritual Healing

  5. Dio - Holy Diver

Andi -  

  1. Iron Maiden – Live After Death
  2. Slayer – Reign In Blood
  3. Tool – Aenima
  4. The Mars Volta – De-loused In The Comatorium
  5. Machine Head – Burn My Eyes

Thank you very much for the interview and your support! Hope to see you sometime on tour!

A big thank you to Black Abyss for this insightful interview.

Black Abyss - Angels Wear Black

Album on Massacre Records.

Click on the album cover to see more info on Black Abyss