The Sign Records Artist Moloken Interview is up
[Greetings. This is Jakob from Moloken, and I will be answering the questions in this interview.]
1. Moloken Has been going on for over a decade now. How has Moloken stay focused and powerful as ever in 2020?
We agreed early in the band’s history of what Moloken should be, and that the band is like any other relationship, i.e. we knew from the formative days of what our influences are, and that there has to be clear communication and collective understanding of where we want to take the music, how to develop as musicians, our band goals etc.. I also think that being among people who also don’t have huge egos and are self-aware helps out a lot of staying together throughout the years, and that we’ve all played in bands in the past.
2. I hear elements of Post Metal, Post Hardcore, Prog Metal and Noise rock. Was this the goal of mixing these elements on Unveilance of Dark Matter?
Not specifically for this album, but in general we’ve had a vision from the start of the band to blend elements of Death Metal, Doom, ’70s Prog. Rock etc..
3. The album cover for Unveilance of Dark Matter is very impressive, how does it tie into the theme of the record?
I’m glad to hear you like the cover. Costin Chioreanu (Twilight 13 Media) is the creator of the artwork on the album. We gave him freedom to interpret and project his vision of our music on visual art, and given the results we’re very happy with his work. “Unveilance…” is a second part of a thematic work in a trilogy, which we started with All Is Left To See, and the lyrical themes on these two last albums has been primarily on personal struggles and destructive relationships. I’d prefer each listener to have their own interpretation of how the artwork correlates to the music, but given my answer I’m sure it can give some “more meat on the bone”.
4. You have worked with several labels, longest being Discouraged Records, why the move to The Sign with new album and how has the new label been to the band?
In the past we released all of our albums ourselves through Kristoffer’s label, Discouraged Records, except All Is Left To See. Releasing it yourself gives you more freedom and power over your own work, but it also requires a huge amount of workload and responsibilities that can be very time-consuming. The Sign records gave us a very good offer; we felt that their interest in us was genuine, they were professional, serious and fair, which is a combination we have always sought in partnerships.
5. I hear elements of bands like D.H.G., Neurosis, Cult of Luna and Mouth of the Architect . What artists have inspired you?
To mention them all would require a whole page itself, but to narrow it down to where our collective come from musically is maybe a more digestive answer: From the beginning the band was formed around interests in bands like Opeth, King Crimson, Breach etc.. There are of course two dozen or more artists of whom we each individually and/or collectively can attribute influences to and can be worth mentioning in a future context.
6. Do you feel in 2020 a band needs their own website or can most be presented with Bandcamp and Social Media?
I think it depends on how you want to present your artistry. Bandcamp and Social Media alone cannot offer the whole spectrum of services you may want to present to fans.
7. You made an official Video for Unbearable, why this track and will there be more videos?
As you may know from watching the video link on Youtube, Costin Chioreanu was also the creator of the Unbearable video, and actually came up with the whole idea to do the animation to begin with. We’re most satisfied with his contribution. We have several videos, both live and official videos, done in the past, and would love to make more in the future.
8. How does the earlier album differ from Unveilance of Dark Matter?
I think personally that there has been a gradual change in our music. As with any artistry, we cultivate our tools of choice and become more and more of a unit in sounds. With that in mind, I would reckon that we started out in the blunt-force trauma aggressiveness and now are moving more towards precision-made brutality, i.e. we improve our “chops” and musical group-dynamics, which inherently changes our aspects of extreme music. Not to say of course we couldn’t go back and just hammer out an open C on dial 11. Anything’s possible, I guess. To summarize, I’d say the first EP represents the basic elements of where we were going musically, it’s all there. Later, with Our Astral Circle and Rural, we stretched out these elements out in album lengths, with more dynamics and sound aspects, and less sludge. All Is Left To See was the first album I think we injected a more finely-tuned vibe to the musical focus, and from that album we knew where we wanted to take the next album.
9. Live or in studio, where does a band like Moloken rather be ? What are the differences?
When everything clicks, there’s nothing better than playing live. At the same time, we can’t tour 24/7. The ability to record albums is the longest living satisfaction in my opinion. It will always be there as a memory of what you have accomplished and it’s something you can wholeheartedly stand behind.
10. Visualization and aesthetic are very important to extreme metal and underground music. Looking at the bands site, art and images what do you [want? sic!] the listener to see before the music even takes places?
I’m not really the visual art buff in the band, but I have a somewhat defined idea of what constitutes Moloken visually, and that’s highly influenced by what we all ready have in store from the earlier recordings and its artwork and merchandise: Different aspects of nature, whether that may be Man facing Nature, or the shifting forms in Nature, the insinuative and feral animal life, and the fragmentations of Man.
11. Sweden has a very storied history for extreme music. Where do you feel you fit in and what do you want to give back to it?
Playing music in a country where a large portion of Death Metal and Black Metal was formed has its disadvantages of course; there has been an inflation of active bands and gigs the last 10 years at least. I would say Moloken are more of a metal band rather than hardcoreish, but funnily enough people have had a tendency to regard us the other way around. All in all, we have the performance standards of a metal act, but we do not feel we need to fit in anywhere particularly. Our contribution to any scene, I guess, would be pushing the boundaries of what brutal music is, and the vibe of our live performances.
12. Do the members have other projects you like to share with my readers or just focus on Moloken?
Some members play in another band, but nothing is released as of yet. Myself, I’m dabbling in all sorts of odd time signatures and oral sounds in JZZBLK and have released a couple of albums.
13. If the band ended on this album, what do you want the fans to get out of all you have done?
To enjoy the sonic journey that a Moloken album is, to sink in and contemplate what feelings it evokes in them and use that for something creative.
14 .Will you be touring with the new record and will North America get a chance to see Moloken live in 2020?
We have a couple of shows booked in Scandinavia so far, namely Droskan (Umeå) on 4/4, Sveriges Radio P4 (Swedish Radio, Umeå) 29/4, Sonic Rites Festival (Helsinki) 16/5, and Gefle Metal Fest (Gävle) 9-11/7. Unfortunately we haven’t booked anything yet for a North American tour, but we would love to do that in the future!
15. Thank you for the time any closing thoughts here.
Thanks for having me! Be well, good luck in all your endeavors and remember these words of wisdom: “A squid eating dough in a Polyethylene bag is fast and bulbous.”