The Interview with Chris - May 2008
Posted by Thor on May 18 2008 16:00:38
Bez nazwy

Well, there hadn't been new interviews with Chris so together with Keiko we decided to do one. No boring introduction - enjoy your reading!

Hello, Christofer. Hope you are doing well. First of all , we would like to thank you for a joint interview. A waited live DVD soon be released. Will you heighten our expectations?

For sure, this is something to look forward to. We spent more money than on any previous video recording and we made a stage show that was unforgettable. (laughs)

You were tremendously busy in releasing new album which was followed by the world tour, performing with the Orchestra in Miskolc Opera Festival, participating in Wacken and touring Europe for the 20th anniversary tour in December. How do you look back to the last year?

One of the most fruitful years ever for sure. But at the same timealso one of the heaviest to get though because of all the activities.

You released chronicle DVD in 2006, and now the live DVD is due this summer. Would you tell us about the DVD (versions-more expensive and cheaper "standard" versions)

There is a non-digipak version out of the Celebrators DVD already, but the stripped down considerably cheaper version was abandoned by NB. Now when we have this new DVD coming out there won't really be a need for it anyway.

Why did you decided to record the show for DVD in Warsaw? Well, you played the bigger venues in other countries though.

We wanted to record something in Europe as we had the biggest stage show here. Warsaw seemed like the perfect balance between venue size and crazy audience.

I have heard that the orchestra show in Bucharest was also recorded but your choice for DVD release was Hungary.Why did you chose Hungary? What's the difference between these shows?

Hungary was better recorded and better perfomed.

What about the process of making DVD? How many hours did you spend in front of monitors choosing material, camera angle etc..?

Personall I hate the work involved with making it, it's just timeconsming and boring. But I'm delighted when the final result isreleased. How many hours? Gee, no idea - too many.

You entertained us by impressive stage shows in GK and the anniversary tour. You seem to be focusing on visual aspects more than ever before. Had you thought about such an artistic impression for a long time?

There has been ideas before, but it wasn't until Snowy joined in that he spark lit a fire.

Were there any plans or stage productions which you had to give up on or compromise with any reason or were there any outcomes were better than you expected?

There were several ideas that we had, that didn't work out in time orthere was no cash for it etc. I'm not gonna reveal any of it, as we might be using them in the future and you know I like to surprise people. (laughs)

In the GK tour, you use four soloists instead of the choir. Are you able to comment on each singer's contribution to the stage performance?

Katarina: She's an alt and an excellent versatile rock singer that can imitate opera singing very well. On stage she's a very dark character and not somebody you would want to piss off - or you'd get a taste ofthat whip! (laughs)

Lori: A superb soprano with a throat made of steel. She can hit ultrahigh notes comforably night after night and even when she was ill, she sang better than any other singer we've had on stage. Her character is balancing Katarinas, but also have a darker side.

Snowy: Crazy singer with an impressive diversity. Makes breathtaking David Byron high pitched singing just as good as grunting or theatrical type of singing I've never heard anyone else do. He also do warm singing with a heavy vibrato pretty well and make a good blendinto the choral parts. His character is some sort of voal super herofrom a comic or something.

Mats: Rock 'n roll master singer that never fails. The most professional singer I've ever worked with. Distrorted rock voice ishis natural thing, but he do great Bowie type of vocals and have a lotof hidden capacities that we unveiled on the last ablum. His characteris simply being a rock guy and that is why he didn't feel fit withthis "fantastic 4" concept. On the pervious tour we had the "beautyand the beast" concept where he and Karin Fjellander was the Yin andYang, that was more his type of thing.

Would you tell us the highlights of the DVD? Are there anything that we should look out for?

Oh, there's plenty! The drum battle is something cool that sticks outand there's a lot of really exiting moments that we caught.

Epica will participate in Miskolc this year. " The rock opera" seems to be a regular event for the festival. It is really a great opportunity to all symphonic metal bands to play with the orchestra in such a traditional occasion. How do you feel about it as being a pioneer of the event?

It was a great success ad they asked us to do it again the year after. But as we were busy we turned it down and they then decided to make it some sort of annual thing and invite other bands. I think that's a cool idea and I wish them the best of luck. Therion will definatly be back and do that again some day and being a pioneer... well we've been that for quite a few thibgs over the years, so it's just how Theiron usually are, we always want to explore new waters.

You always find very talented unknown or surprising musicians and place them into a right place. It especially hit a mark on the line up for the shows in last year.
Are there any possibilities that you would work with some of them on the next album?

We'll so far it's a secret about who will be the instrumentalists on the next album, but for sure you will hear some of the live singers we used on last years touring.

Therion released albums in lots of countries and they have different bonus tracks. Are you one of people who decide the songs to be the bonus track?

Sometimes (on SOTR for example), but most of the time I just get a copy from NB of some licened release and see it has bonus tracks. As those are non exclusive bonuses, it dones't matter that much too me. If it's something exclusive (like an unrealeased song), then the band must be behind it.

Japanese version has the translation of lyrics and song titles. I think it is lots of work for the translators who do not have knowledge of mysticism. In fact, there are lots of translation errors and some parts are interpreted in an "unique way". Do you have any input into the translations?

As we don't speak a word Japanese, it would be hard for us to see if it's translated good or not. But maybe some Japanese fans with good English and good knowledge in these topics can give a helping handnext time?

After participating in Loud Park festival, your fan base in Japan increased. However, since Therion released lots of albums with different taste, it is very hard to decide what should buy next. What would you suggest is good albums for new fans to listen to?

Given the fact that Japan is so known for loving fast guitar solos and technical playing, I would say Gothic Kabbalah is the premium choice! (laughs)
But Japan is also known for it's love for melodic music, so Sirus B is probably a good secondary choice.

You didn't have much time to see Japan. If you had an opportinutiy to come to Japan again, what would you like to see or experience?

Too many things to mention! (laughs) On top on my wishing list would be to visit the mountains and some old temples there. And maybe some small fishing village where you can meet the ordinary people that have lived in a very similar way since the old times. I admire Japan more for it's rich roots and traditions than for the modern technological country.

I know that you heard the bootleg from Krakow 2007. What do you think about it?

I haven't had the time to liten to it properly and to be honest, after a long tour playing all these songs, the last thing ou want to do is to sit and listen to those songs on CD, ha ha. ESPECIALLY since that is exactly what I had to do when preparing the DVD. So ask me again 2012or something. (laughs)

You have a sabbatical year now - how you are spending your free time?

Visiting the opera, reading, writing some music (that's not considered work) and renovating my house in Ireland.

Do you think that the present situation in Tibet should lead do Olympic Game boycott?


Do you feel something like reponsibility when you give interviews?

There are many young people for whom you might be an authority. I usually never get any questions that would make much of a difference what I answer to young people actually.

In many old interviews you mentioned that you were writing two things: your own opera and a book about Therion, How's the work going, when can we expect it to be released?

I'm not gonna give any release dates, but I will be picking up working on these two things this year. I expect to finnish the opera next time I have a year off (2011), but you never know.

That's all from us. We are looking forward to the DVD. Thanks!

Thank you!

10th May 2008
Authors: Thor i Keiko