Swallowed. Swallowed by the darkness. Engulfed by horror, under a guitar tone that will give you chills. On the back of two demos and an EP, whilst indebted to Autopsy and the early pioneers of unsettling Doom, the Finnish band SWALLOWED has now reached that point of ‘what comes next’? To find out, I contacted their drummer / vocalist Ville to ask how they go about defining the band, what makes them unique, what makes them different from all the other foul Death Metal bands that have emerged recently?
We wouldn’t define it, because definitions – words – can never express the totality of being. Of course this can be viewed as a cop out… But we strongly feel that way. But if we are to put some poetry into it… It’s very visceral, like down to the core ‘feel’ of things. Lyrically things are very impressionistic. Trying to catch sensations with words instead of telling a story. It doesn’t have to “mean” anything (but it does). The form is the meaning! The medium is the message! So, you know, we don’t need to hail under a banner such as death metal. We don’t need a catchphrase, the music should do the talking. Of course it’s useful to market.
So who then are you playing for? Is the band for your own enjoyment, or do you feel a ‘need’ to make your releases?
There is the basic drive to create. What else is there to do on this petty earth?
How was the trip to Kill Town festival, Copenhagen?
We had a killer time… Everyone in Denmark are now well informed of our corageous victory in ’95. But a really cool place, laid back attitude, weed, lots of freegoodfood, cool people, terrific shows. It ruled.
We’d like to tour…
Are the lyrics your own thoughts and ideas on what the music sounds like, or are you just following a tradition to fit the standard Death Metal viewpoint more than strictly what goes on in the music?
Yes, see question one. Certain words to evoke certain images. They comefrom a very personal place. The space where rationality is abolished, where subject and object come together. There is no time in this place. Visit this place as often as you can!
Unsavourily – do you personally find these flesh eating diseases unsavourily? Or more society’s view of them? Do the members of Swallowed suffer from a paraphilia, taking pleasure in seeing the sick and diseased?
The song is called Unsavorably. Is that a real word? What we mean with it is BLEEDING UNSAVORABLY. You are infact moving forward and there can be no return. It cannot be savoured. Excuse our language. The glyph is addressed in the Carcass song: Swarming Vulgar Mass Of Infected Virulency.
Is signing to the right label as important as it once was? Why sign with Detest / Me saco un ojo, what do they do that the band couldn’t do alone?
Jerry from Detest released our 2nd demo which created a lot of interest for the band. Then we released the 7″ on our own ‘just because’. MSUO and Detest were the first who offered us a LP deal so wee took it. I think it will be alright.
You’ve started recordings for the album, what details can you give right now?
It will contain 1-2 songs from EON-demo REWORKED, the 7″ songs REWORKED, and 2 new ones, which are brutal and long. Stylistically these new songs are a little different, but we don’t make the same song twice anyway. Working title at the moment is LUNARTERYALTAR.