• Voices In My Head

Interview with River of Souls

#StencilPR #RoguePR #RiverofSouls #Usurper



SPR (VIMH): Hi guys, congrats on your new album “Usurper”

Paul: Thank you! We're pretty much pleased with the result ourselves, and fortunately, all reviews we received so far do confirm we did a good job with 'Usurper'!

What is the significance of naming the album “Usurper”?

Hi guys, congrats on your new album “Usurper”

Paul: Thank you! We're pretty much pleased with the result ourselves, and fortunately, all reviews we received so far do confirm we did a good job with 'Usurper'!

What is the significance of naming the album “Usurper”?

Bart: “Usurper” is about the tyranny of grief, hurt and death which strikes us in many forms and at different levels. It takes away everything we thought we had control of, just like a usurper does.

What are the lyrics about? Which are your major lyrics’ influences?

Bart: It’s all about the atmosphere for me, in music as well as in lyrics. I always try to work around a concept and mould it into a story which flows naturally throughout the album. I’m influenced by great lyricists like Aaron Stainthorpe of My Dying Bride and Jonas Renkse of Katatonia, especially when it comes to telling a story without making it too specific so there is still room for one’s own imagination.

Which are those elements that separate your new album from your previous albums?

Paul: Well, the main difference on the musical level, is that there's a more cohesive sound throughout the album, at least, in my opinion. I think that on our first album, there are tracks that could have been made by different bands. It has 6 tracks, and it has 6 style changes…. On our new album we have included all the styles we do, and even expanded the influences a bit more, but still, each track on our new album sounds like River Of Souls. But even so, I think we still managed to bring 8 different tracks. The new album kind of underlines what River Of Souls stands for. A musical journey through various soundscapes, that are formed by all kinds of METAL!

How would you characterize River Of Souls, and what are your expectations from the new album?

Paul: Well, we're typically an 'album band”. We create albums that should be listened to as a whole. We aim to create an easy-to-listen-to album that brings various passages, that can be seen as an odyssey, a journey, or a book if you will, that together forms a complete story on a musical level. And by that I think we create albums that are still interesting after 500 spins or more.


What our expectations are……. Well, our albums are easy-listening metal, but, they're not really transparent in what people can expect from us. By that, I'm saying that you can't listen to just 1 or 2 songs, and get a clear idea of what we do from that. People should listen to a complete album, and I think that's too much asked from the audience these days. So, I don't expect we can easily convince people with our music through the internet, we really need to convince people through our live performances...

How’s the fans’ reactions been to the new songs on your live shows so far?

Bart: Unfortunately, we haven't been able to play some new songs live yet due to the COVID-19 situation. I am anxious to see and hear the first reactions to our new songs when played live. We’ve been working on our overall live sound, so it will be cool to hear reactions about that too. I think we sound heavier than ever before.

Do you prefer to be on the road or in the studio writing and recording?

Paul: I prefer playing live. Even though I really like to write tracks, and record demo versions of the tracks, but I actually don't like recording for 'the real deal'. That's also why I often use the recordings of certain instruments from the demo versions, because re-recording certain guitar leads or first vocal takes, usually don't have the charm of the initial recording. But well, playing live is way more fun in my opinion.


Bart: I definitely prefer being on the road. Every show brings a lot of adventure with it, no matter where or how big or small the venue or crowd is. Meeting new people, getting to know other bands and most of all feeling the energy of the crowd during the show itself makes it worth your while every time.

How did you come up with the name River Of Souls initially?

Bart: It is based on the subterranean river Styx, swarming with the souls of the dead. The river can take you across realms and dimensions like a portal. Very much like how we like our music to work, so it seemed like a fitting name.


How would you describe your music style to someone that hasn’t heard of you before?

Paul: In short? Doomed Heavy Death Metal.

Which do you consider to be the best male & female vocalist in metal history?

Paul: There is no best in my opinion. And it's music, not a football competition, hahaha!

Which is the record you wish you had written and why?

Paul: Hmm, that would probably change from day to day, as there are so many albums I wish I had written…. Too many to choose from, can't decide.

Were you obliged to give just one album to extra-terrestrials that would represent the whole human music, which album would it be and from which band/artist?

Paul: Hahaha, what a strange question! Well, if it should represent the human race, I'd say something from Napalm Death. Because they have a lot to tell about the stupidity and insanity of man. But you're saying 'human music'…. I honestly have no idea…. I think no album would be able to do so. But it should be something human, not something with electronic beats.

If you had the chance to travel in time… where would you choose to go? To the past or the future and why?

Paul: Yes, I'd go to the past. Probably the seventies or the eighties. Music was purer back then. Nowadays the music scene seems to be more active on the internet than in reality. Not saying living was easier back then, but well…. “Usurper” is about the tyranny of grief, hurt and death which strikes us in many forms and at different levels. It takes away everything we thought we had control of, just like a usurper does.

What are the lyrics about? Which are your major lyrics’ influences?

Bart: It’s all about the atmosphere for me, in music as well as in lyrics. I always try to work around a concept and mould it into a story which flows naturally throughout the album. I’m influenced by great lyricists like Aaron Stainthorpe of My Dying Bride and Jonas Renkse of Katatonia, especially when it comes to telling a story without making it too specific so there is still room for one’s own imagination.

Which are those elements that separate your new album from your previous albums?

Paul: Well, the main difference on the musical level, is that there's a more cohesive sound throughout the album, at least, in my opinion. I think that on our first album, there are tracks that could have been made by different bands. It has 6 tracks, and it has 6 style changes….


On our new album we have included all the styles we do, and even expanded the influences a bit more, but still, each track on our new album sounds like River Of Souls. But even so, I think we still managed to bring 8 different tracks. The new album kind of underlines what River Of Souls stands for. A musical journey through various soundscapes, that are formed by all kinds of METAL!

How would you characterize River Of Souls, and what are your expectations from the new album?

Paul: Well, we're typically an 'album band”. We create albums that should be listened to as a whole. We aim to create an easy-to-listen-to album that brings various passages, that can be seen as an odyssey, a journey, or a book if you will, that together forms a complete story on a musical level. And by that I think we create albums that are still interesting after 500 spins or more.


What our expectations are……. Well, our albums are easy-listening metal, but, they're not really transparent in what people can expect from us. By that, I'm saying that you can't listen to just 1 or 2 songs, and get a clear idea of what we do from that. People should listen to a complete album, and I think that's too much asked from the audience these days. So, I don't expect we can easily convince people with our music through the internet, we really need to convince people through our live performances...

How’s the fans’ reactions been to the new songs on your live shows so far?

Bart: Unfortunately, we haven't been able to play some new songs live yet due to the COVID-19 situation. I am anxious to see and hear the first reactions to our new songs when played live. We’ve been working on our overall live sound, so it will be cool to hear reactions about that too. I think we sound heavier than ever before.

Do you prefer to be on the road or in the studio writing and recording?

Paul: I prefer playing live. Even though I really like to write tracks, and record demo versions of the tracks, but I actually don't like recording for 'the real deal'. That's also why I often use the recordings of certain instruments from the demo versions, because re-recording certain guitar leads or first vocal takes, usually don't have the charm of the initial recording. But well, playing live is way more fun in my opinion.


Bart: I definitely prefer being on the road. Every show brings a lot of adventure with it, no matter where or how big or small the venue or crowd is. Meeting new people, getting to know other bands and most of all feeling the energy of the crowd during the show itself makes it worth your while every time.

How did you come up with the name River Of Souls initially?

Bart: It is based on the subterranean river Styx, swarming with the souls of the dead. The river can take you across realms and dimensions like a portal. Very much like how we like our music to work, so it seemed like a fitting name.


How would you describe your music style to someone that hasn’t heard of you before?

Paul: In short? Doomed Heavy Death Metal.

Which do you consider to be the best male & female vocalist in metal history?

Paul: There is no best in my opinion. And it's music, not a football competition, hahaha!

Which is the record you wish you had written and why?

Paul: Hmm, that would probably change from day to day, as there are so many albums I wish I had written…. Too many to choose from, can't decide.

Were you obliged to give just one album to extra-terrestrials that would represent the whole human music, which album would it be and from which band/artist?

Paul: Hahaha, what a strange question! Well, if it should represent the human race, I'd say something from Napalm Death. Because they have a lot to tell about the stupidity and insanity of man. But you're saying 'human music'…. I honestly have no idea…. I think no album would be able to do so. But it should be something human, not something with electronic beats.

If you had the chance to travel in time… where would you choose to go? To the past or the future and why?

Paul: Yes, I'd go to the past. Probably the seventies or the eighties. Music was purer back then. Nowadays the music scene seems to be more active on the internet than in reality. Not saying living was easier back then, but well….





LINKS:

Our biography :

www.riverofsouls.nl/bio/


Facebook:

www.facebook.com/riverofsoulsband/


Please check out our latest full-length album called ‘Usurper’ which can be purchased at our website

https://www.riverofsouls.nl/product/usurper-cd/


or digitally:

https://riverofsouls.bandcamp.com/


iTunes, Amazon, or streamed via Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/4YTY52z5Uietm2rBUhhvel


And be sure to check out our brand-new lyric video of the track “A Spirit’s Weight” from “Usurper” on YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oQ1GXgTdFk





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