Svartulven was born in 2017 by C.P. Composing started in 2017 by C.P, in 2020 the material took shape and the recordings are complete.
Forged by the anvil of terror and agony “Ruins of Desolation, Transcendence for the Other Side” is born.
The first album of Svartulven is taking shape. We raise our cups of wine to celebrate the name of the Great Old and the Other Side.
This Is Black Metal Webzine was there and talked with them about the story behind this project!
This Is Black Metal: Hello and welcome to ‘This is Black Metal’, firstly, I would like to express my thanks to you for having this interview, for when the opportunity arose, I was rather elated as I thoroughly enjoyed your debut album. So how have you been? Seeing as the band has crafted their first offering, how does it feel as the creator to finally see the seed come to fruition and in physical form?
Svartulven: First of all, thank you for this opportunity. All is well in the camp of Svartulven, as it is always a warm feeling to finally formulate a piece of work, and be able to witness a collective effort, form into “flesh and bones”. Up to now, the reception of our work from the scene has been promising, but this has never been a concern, as we made music for the Devil.
TIBM: One aspect I was rather intrigued about was the fact that prior to this album, there was no EP nor demoing, in other words, the band went straight into a full-length, so can you relay to the readers exactly what ignited the creative pyres to conceptualize this album? What were the elements that drove the band to manifest ‘Ruins of Desolation’?
Svartulven: I understand that it is not common for a Black Metal band, to go immediately forward with a full-length album, however, we do not believe in any kind of norms, so to us, it is perfectly normal. The strands of time have worked their way, for us to have enough material for a full-length album. As far as the creative conceptions, behind ‘Ruins of Desolation’, are concerned, the first and foremost step of creation, is to fulfill your inner, higher self and its aspirations. Other elements of the album are an amalgamation, of our personal studies, experiences, and spiritual endeavors. In every work we delve into, musical or otherwise, we attempt to break the mundane boundaries of human conformity and experience. So, you can say that every piece of music, is an effort towards a new transcendence.
TIBM: From my listening experience with the album, and feel free to keep me honest here, the aura that is emitted feels ceremonial and ritualistic in its energy…I am rather curious to know from an artistic point of view, how did the band crafted this atmosphere, and was it a conscious decision for the album to bare a visceral characteristic to it?
Svartulven: You are right to have detected a ceremonial and ritualistic element, in our work. We do not just compose and play music. We ourselves are the instruments, “nerve-endings”, of chthonian energies. The reflections of their abominable visages. As result, I do not know whether we can speak of a purely “conscious decision”, concerning a visceral characteristic of the album, but rather a strive to follow a pulse, echoing through the eons, space and time. Svartulven’s music is a means to commune with these primordial energies, and through that process, break and exceed your personal boundaries.
TIBM: In keeping with the atmosphere of the album, could you shed some light on the actual recording process of the album, what I am most interested in knowing is the mindset that was undertaken into reaching these esoteric heights, in other words, during the recording sessions, how did you get into that particular realm in order to invoke that which is heard by the listener?
Svartulven: It is true that there are processes that we follow, in order to access this state and mindset. To be more precise, we try to create a state of mind, in order to conjure these energies. Every band member has, of course, his own method or process, to reach out to the beyond, and formulate his own experience, bringing a unique addition, to a collective composition. This is all I can state on record.
TIBM: Even though art can be subjective to the person who may drink its details, and the perception may differ, I still must ask, as the creator, is there a particular spirit or message you wish to be felt by the listener? What certain aspects of ‘Ruins of Desolation’ that you hope the listener would absorb?
Svartulven: As I have mentioned before, it is not our concern, what the listener will feel or absorb, by ‘Ruins of Desolation’, as I consider a grave “sin”, to dictate to anyone, how he is to perceive, not only music but also the great gnosis. We are not here to abide by laws, nor to impose any. These are the works of the Creator, the laws and bowed heads. We are made from a different kind of material. In us, is where the seeds of the Adversary are grown, and it is this potential, that we aspire to offer, to the listener.
TIBM: Shifting to the actual sound of the album, it’s one that strikes a balance between a raw-like aesthetic versus being polished, and in my opinion, it works rather well as it accentuates the overall ambience, what was the creative decision in going towards this route where the instrumental variables possess a transcendental tinge to its sound?
Svartulven: What you have listened to, is actually the second mix of the album, as the first mixing process did not deliver the aesthetic, we expected. As a result, we had to mix it a second time, in order to find the balance between a raw-like aesthetic, and a more ritualistic form. For this result, we cooperated with Nick Trialonis and “Goblin’s Lair Studios”, which were able to express our vision.
TIBM: In regards to the vocals on the album, what is appreciated is the organic essence that is expelled from the delivery, in that it never felt forced, rather, it felt like a natural extension of the atmosphere, so my next question leans upon that aspect, what exactly was the inspiration behind the voice, in terms of delivering that energy felt on the release, was there a definitive goal in terms of the aura you wished to forge with the vocals?
Svartulven: In relation to the album’s vocals, the process is first, to envision the aesthetic I want to deliver, for every piece, and for the next step, to become one with it, so that I instinctively know how its flow will continue, from its zenith to its nadir. I wanted to deliver a malignant, yet atmospheric aura, for each composition, by initially creating a relevant, sinister state of mind, for myself, flowing within what was collectively created.
TIBM: Your artwork was created by the amazing Adrian Baxter, and to me it magnifies the ambience released from the album, acting as a visual companion piece, what was the reasoning for choosing Adrian Baxter? Also, would you care to elaborate on the meaning behind the visual portion?
Svartulven: Obviously, the album’s artwork can act as a substantial visual companion piece, to the music. Apart from the great work of Adrian Baxter, the logo and drawings were created by the NoxFragor Art, in what I consider a very interesting composition. The visual portion of the album expresses a conceptual inspiration, between elements of destruction and desolation, over which loom the myriad pathways, towards personal ascension and transcendence, into the reflection of Cosmos. The truth.
TIBM: In regarding the genre of Black Metal, there exist many shades where ideologies are concerned, whereby different artists can channel different forms of energy using the genre as a conduit, but where Svartulven is concerned, from your perspective what does the genre represent and mean to you, in respect to both music and ideologies.
Svartulven: Black Metal must be dangerous, outside of trends and norms, challenging the popular belief system and against modernistic banality. Svartulven expresses themselves, as the great Ofermod has put it, within the “Orthodox Black Metal” genre. However, considering Black Metal, in a strict ideological frame, does not express the phasm of possibilities, that we can conquer. Black Metal cannot be contained in a range of music genres, but holds in itself, a true way of life.
TIBM: You have chosen to remain anonymous where the band members are concerned…was it an artistic decision whereby you wanted the music to be the main focus? Would it be something in which you can disclose the reasoning and mindset for being veiled?
Svartulven: We find that there is no meaning in being self-consumed by names or titles. We prefer to be totally focused on the work at hand, which in itself is a personal dissolution, inside the great Truth. By naming yourself, you feed your personal ego, whereas we strive to create a singular, yet collective “entity”.
TIBM: Dealing with the creative side of Svartulven, what were the influences that flow through the veins of this beast, whether it may stem from music, literature, or other sources, could you elaborate on the structure that is Svartulven and its components?
Svartulven: Musically, our influences stem from the truly “great beasts” of Black Metal, such as “The True Mayhem”, “Dissection”, “Bathory”, etc. As far as other influences are concerned, we can mention the works of Baudelaire, Bataille, William Blake and Albert Camus. In the realm of the Occult, our influences are to remain private.
TIBM: In ending with this interview, again, thank you for taking the patience and time to answer these questions, as it is greatly appreciated, so the last question I have is, what would be the ideal listening experience for your debut album, as in if you would have to ritualize the moment of hearing it for the first time, how would you like someone to experience it?
Svartulven: Listen in darkness, at maximum volume.
TIBM: I would leave the last few words to you, anything you would like to tell the readers?
Svartulven: Devour the light. Seek the knowledge of shades. Journey beyond.