Recalling back those days when Rotting Christ became so popular around here. We all remember every bands from Malaysia were into Greek’s sound, and believe me I’ve seen a punk band jamming “Fourth Knight Of Revelation” in rehearsal room we used to play! Ha! Ha! Let bygone be bygone, Rotting Christ has lost their magick somewhere, but let me tell you there is a survivors from those days... those glorious days. And they need no introduction since they’re the VARATHRON, which still uphold the banner of Greek Black Metal high since 1988. I am glad to have Stephan, the original vocalist here for some questions...
How’s Athen today? Is everything went all well with the band and surrounding?
Hail my brother Rammy!!! Well, I live in Ioannina, a city northern to Athens with a great nature and monuments!! It’s a city 450km from Athens. About the band is so strong now!! A new album surprised a lot of people and we recieved so many great reviews!! Perfect!
I must thanks you to Varathron for giving me the great music again. I praise “Crowreign” as a good album, but I do not agree if someone said it is back to the root style. I means, there alots of progression can be heard in that album. And of course, it is heavier than the last 2 albums.
I think our new attack is a pure Black Metal with a so apocryphal and occult feelings. Also, some riffs are ‘back on the root’ style! The general ‘view’ of album is one more step from our last release. Something more mysterious, something more evil, something more abysmal!!!!!
Tell me about the new line-up? Do you satisfied with these gladiators works?
Well, the new members are so great and faithful on our music. Are two young crazy musicians who are fans of Varathron for years! So, I think was more easy to working for us. Yes, I’m totally satisfied with them!! Are metal maniacs with so ‘hungry’ for work, for creation!!!!
I think, band like Varathron don’t stick to just one studio. What kind of condition that you really pay attention? Why? I remember in the old days, Unisound Studio have gave huge identity to Black Metal bands.. you have also done a recording there, right?
All these years we had recorded on a different studios! I think one very good is the ‘Live Studio’ and of course our new studio ‘Praxis Studio’! About Unisound Studio is not exist anymore like the label and the Storm Studio too! I think th new studio have a great sound-materials for great productions! ‘Praxis’ rules!!!!
The great thing about Varathron is they don’t overuse the keys like Gothic Metal bands. Will you going to keep it that way? And you guys are quite technical this time!
Well, Varathron use the synths only for more atmosphere. Is my pure opinion. The Gothic bands use the synths for dark melody, is a different way. Also, our new album have some technical parts, cause the new members coming from music-high school! It’s not a good thing, what you say?
I say it sound evil and grandeur! Even untill now, your harsh growls still remained. You also used some distorted voices without losing the brutal feelings. Do you satisfied with the result?
Well, my voice is total natural! A lot of people they ask me if I smoke, if I put some effects on my voice, if I put some distortion and more! The answer is no! This is my natural voice! Beside I hate smoke cause I’m a kickboxing fighter! I make a natural life, as I can!
Well, I’m happy to see you guys still wearing those leathers, inverted cross, pentagram. I means these days metal bands more into bermuda pants, jogging shoes, etc.. which is not metal at all...
As you know I born and grow up with real metal sound not a false shits! I like leather, the magic symbol ( like the shirt Blasphemy I wear on picture of our album). I think metal music is a style of life, a great philosophy not just a poor fashion for empty-brain people! I hate fashion and all the music-mafia for money!! Are polluted our metal scene!! Crush ‘em all!!
Do you know that in the early 90’s almost 80% Malaysian metal bands sounded like they’re from Greece! Now, you know how big is band like Rotting Christ in Malaysia. I think, Sakis has visited Malaysia in those days. So, when will Varathron going to tour Malaysia?
I have a total respect to our friends in Malaysia! I received tons of letters all of these years and I have so many friends there!! I hope to visit your place on the next months!!! Beside, I like your homeland, the culture and the ancient monuments!! We’ll start playing live-after some years and it will be great. We have a second guitarist and a bass player for that!! So, we so strong and aggressive now!!
On behalf of your band, tell me.. during the process of songwriting, did you care for what the fans would like to hear or just do what yourself wanted to hear?
When we create an album we want a good result, not only for us but for our friends-fans who we respects all these years! So, when I wrote the lyrics or we wrote the music of a song, we want something who they give a satisfaction to us, first! Then I hope to give a satisfaction to our friends. Beside when we create something is impossible to us, we know the final result. To know, if the fan like or dislike the album, but always we try the best, eternally!!!
What would you do if you weren’t playing with Varathron? Ever imagine your life without music? Tell me about your radioshows?
My life is full of music! I have a metal radioshow, called “Twilight Zone 98.7” FM. Also I playing on another band on my city and I make some productions too. Also my freetime is so full, I training on kickboxing, I read books, I wrote poems. Of course all the mailing of Varathron and I watch movies!
Last words to your Malaysian fans?
Thanks so much for your supports! I salute all the metal maniacs there, embrace our occult music, beware for our live-invasion!! The beast return on the road!!! Hail and Kill!!
Stephen has been a great pal of mine till today. We mostly talk about martial arts we’re into. He is interested in Muay Thai I’ve been practising long time ago and really wanted to visit Malaysia to see and learn martial arts in here. Contact this great guy and check out their new album!
click to visit Varatron myspace