Little by little the return of the Swedish death metal mafia keeps creeping upon us, this time the band VAMPIRE is the latest addition to the growing new era of Swedish death metal. VAMPIRE is a four piece band founded in 2011, that had a massive underground success when they released their début demo in 2012. Which called the attention of Century Media, who signed them last November.
VAMPIRE is conformed by unknown or perhaps known musicians, as no one knows their real names, or know who they are (Ghost, anyone). Their 3 song demo tape caused so much impact within the underground movement that is now sold out. After signing with Century Media, the band is about to release their self titled full length album, VAMPIRE, at the end of next month. Their style is straight old school death metal in the vein of Dissection, Tormentor, & Celtic Frost.
For an unknown new band having their demo tape sold out, and signing a record deal in the span of only three years of existence, that is a pretty good record. So far the band had streamed a couple of songs from their new album, and has scheduled a couple of shows, including a release party this April.
The Age Of Metal got a hold of Black String, guitar player and founder member of VAMPIRE. We talked about their music, their upcoming album, and the death metal scene in Sweden.
The Age Of Metal: Compared to your debut demo, how can you describe the upcoming full-length self-titled album?
VAMPIRE: The album shows sides of Vampire that were only partially evident in the demo. The songs on the album are more atmospheric, aggressive, harmonic and tightly performed than before.
TAOM: The demo was successful, as it was sold out on its different forms (Tape & 7 inch) then you signed with Century Media. Do you think the signing with a major label would affect the outcome of the new album? Or do you think the underground would receive it just as well as the demo?
VAMPIRE: The outcome of the album is solely dependent on Vampire and no one else. Of course, there are certain narrow-minded people who would scream “sell out” on internet forums each time a band gets the opportunity to reach a bigger audience, but we have better things to do than caring about such nonsense. For every lost backstabber there are a hundred new fans.
TAOM: For what we heard on “Howl From The Coffin”, you recorded this album the old school way. How did that help to capture the essential sound of the band?
VAMPIRE: The recording method wasn’t essential for the outcome really, but of course there are certain recording techniques that wouldn’t be suitable for Vampire. Digital technique is out of fashion in the metal underground these days, but twenty years ago, it was the coolest thing there ever was. Times change…
TAOM: Will the new album be released on tape? As that form worked out fine for the band in the past.
VAMPIRE: I wouldn’t mind that at all, but in the end it’s up to Century Media to decide. Interested parties can get in touch with us and we will discuss the proposal with Century Media.
TAOM: With a name like Vampire, which is a term used a lot in pop culture (movies, books, games, etc.) How did you decide to stick with the name?
VAMPIRE: It might be a popular word, but so is dissection if you’re working with pathology or Marduk if Sumerian mythology is your topic of interest.
TAOM: Is there is any vampiric concept going on in your music? Or the name has no relation with the musical concept of the band?
VAMPIRE: Generally, we don’t care the slightest about vampires actually. There’s only one vampire to us and that’s Vampire.
TAOM: What can you tell us about your musical background & influences?
VAMPIRE: I started playing the guitar 22 years ago, but I still can’t handle 10% of that instrument yet. My sources of inspiration come from old thrash/speed and heavy metal, but also from the Swedish black/death metal scene in the mid-nineties with bands like Necrophobic, Dissection, Nifelheim and Ophthalamia.
TAOM: The Swedish death metal scene is quite rich & diverse. What is Vampire bringing to the death metal table that would break you apart from any other band coming out of Sweden?
VAMPIRE: Something different than the average stuff, which is normally labeled “Swedish death metal” I guess. There’s a lot more to Vampire than the down-tuned, atonal and unstructured riffing that usually goes under that label.
TAOM: You recorded a 7-inch split with Mismal that will be only available at the Vampire release show in Gothenburg, Sweden on April 5th. What is new on this split? And would that be available for purchase everywhere else later on?
VAMPIRE: I’ll keep that as a secret until the 7” has been released. Besides, I don’t know yet what Miasmal will bring to the table. Remaining copies will be available from Century Media’s mail order for those who are interested.
TAOM: Once the album is released, will you be touring to support the new album? And if Vampire tours, would there be a tour that will reach the USA?
VAMPIRE: We haven’t planned any tours right now, apart from a few gigs in Sweden after the release of the album. However, we hope to get to the USA as soon as somebody sends us a decent offer.
TAOM: Are there any last words that you want to address to the fans that are awaiting the upcoming new album, and to those that are just now discovering your music?
VAMPIRE: Get our album if you have a steady relation to evil metal.
March 29th – Kägelbanan – Stockholm, Sweden w/ TRIBULATION, ANTICHRIST
April 5th – Truckstop Alaska – Gothenburg, Sweden w/ MORBUS CHRON, MIASMAL
Hand of Doom: Vocals
Black String: Guitars