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farsot2011 introInterview with

10.XIXt (vocals) of Farsot.

If there was ever a band to bring back the “enigmatic aura” of Black Metal, FARSOT. would be that band. With a shroud of mystery about them and an interest in breaching the boundaries of “generic”, the group’s latest album ‘Insects’ has been a long time coming since their 2007 effort. I got a chance to shed some light into this darkness by discussing the release, and the band, with 10.XIXt.

Reflections of Darkness (RoD): Hello from Reflections. How are things going for the band?
10.XIXt: The last months until the release of ‘Insects’ were a bit stressful. So, at the moment we are enjoying the clearance for different things besides the band. We’re glad about the very good resonances on our second album, though. All things are fortunately going quite calmly. We need a bit of time to retreat from the “work-filled” part of the band, which isn't our profession. There are already some confirmed gigs but no further or concrete plans up to now.

farsot2011 01RoD: Congratulations on the new album; it sounds like a pretty fantastic and intriguing piece of Black Metal. Where do you get your influences from?
10.XIXt: Thank you. We’re totally addicted to music and always listening to a lot of different styles of music. Our musical interests are reaching from Black Metal to Progressive Rock to Trip Hop to Jazz. We don’t know any musical borders, neither while listening nor when writing music. The key element is that the music should arise straight from heart. Every single member brings his own influences into the band’s musical creations. We cannot redefine the wheel when writing music, but we could add our personality and our emotions to it.

RoD: Usually FARSOT. seems to include a direct concept for each album… is there a main idea behind ‘Insects’ or did you go more for just a broad variety for fans to enjoy?
10.XIXt: There is indeed a concept behind ‘Insects.’ This time I plunged much deeper into the matter than you could possibly expect. The album is about the abysmal comparison between the behaviour of man and insect. It is up to you of how to answer the questions which are given by the album’s lyrics; such as “In what way is the mankind an insect?” “Isn’t it true that we degrade ourselves to vermin by our own behaviour?” “Are we really the self-proclaimed crown of creation?” “Isn’t the insect the much stronger subject in the fight for survival?” All these questions are more or less of rhetoric origin and by this confrontation we have to accept that we hold the worse cards in our hands. Besides the fact that insects will survive man, we have to detect that the behaviour patterns of mankind and the insects are quite similar. Humanity is also following this one big thing without any form of individualism and intellect. But we don’t give up our personality for the queen of ants or bees - mankind is simply guided by money - the greatest invention for man’s rapid downfall.

farsot2011 02RoD: One thing you do on ‘Insects’ is a shift from German to English in your song titles and lyrics. Is there any particular reason for the shift?
10.XIXt: After 12 years of using German lyrics it felt like the right decision to discontinue our mother-tongue and attempt English lyrics instead. While the writing-process of ‘Insects’ we experienced that German vocals wouldn’t fit any more. The musical and lyrical structure longed for English. So we decided to change the language and we don’t regret this small but decisive step.

RoD: For those who don’t know, how did FARSOT. come together back in 1999? What is it about Black Metal that made you want to go into the genre?
10.XIXt: We just wanted to pay tribute to this music, which was written by some of our musical all-time favourites in the mid 90´s (DARKTHRONE, BURZUM, ENSLAVED, GEHENNA, SATYRICON, EMPEROR, ABIGOR, a.o.). There was no musical master plan at this time but Black Metal was the music which brought us together as fans and we wanted to create it by our own. So we founded FARSOT. with a bit different line-up and sound than today. The band’s name in the very first months was HAGELSTURM (in engl. Hailstorm) by the way.

farsot2011 05RoD: What aspects of FARSOT. do you think represents Black Metal? It is a lot more complex than the old school style of the 90s, and also beyond the typical Satanic themes.
10.XIXt: FARSOT. is not really Black Metal if you take it seriously. As you mentioned, since our foundation there are no Satanic-themed contents in our music. It is the lyrical essence of the “true” Black Metal spirit. But the term Black Metal has widen through the ages and nowadays gathers all extreme, negative and sinister sounding metal-bands with the genre-typical screams, riffs and attack. We ever try to enrich the genre with a unique mixture of dark, atmospheric, intense and abysmal music. At its basics you still could call it Black Metal but I think we release our genre-binding more and more with every output as a normal process of developing technical skills and a constantly increasing musical horizon.

RoD: When did you decide you wanted to go from create shorter Black Metal tracks to more epic, introspective works like you did with your debut ‘IIII’?
10.XIXt: There was no decision to make. We write a song until we are completely satisfied with its final result. Through our attention to detail and several variations in musical style and loudness, it is quite usual that the songs are a bit longer. We always attempt to build up a dense, flowing atmosphere. It is almost impossible for us to dispatch this imagination of music within two or three minutes. Maybe we’ll find a perfect formula for some shorter FARSOT.-style Black Metal tunes in the future. Who knows? At least nobody of us would ever say, “Hey! This song is just three minutes long. We have to expand it!”

farsot2011 06RoD: Your band members all like to keep things as anonymous as possible when identifying yourselves. Do you do this to add some mysticism to the band or would you prefer to keep musical life separate from personal?
10.XIXt: If we would separate both, our music wouldn’t be credible any more. Our musical life is a part of our personal life. Through our pseudonyms and the reserved appearance we could complete the overall-concept simply named FARSOT. The band isn’t boasting with any figureheads. It is a closed unit. All the individuals within this construct just represent its music. No more. No less. We let the music speak for itself, because it's the core, which the interest in FARSOT. should come from.

RoD: Usually people who are not familiar with its progression think that all Black Metal is associated with anti-Christian themes in the way that some think that Cannibal Corpse is the poster child for Death Metal. Do you ever have listeners who blatantly just label you improperly and how do you do your best to promote yourself for the messages that YOU want to bring to fans, especially if you like to remain anonymous?
10.XIXt: I could imagine that many people dislike our music because it is some kind of “untrue”. We aren’t Satanic or Occult and we are not very evil at all. We just follow our own visions of blackened extreme Metal. Label our music as you want. It still remains the same. It is all about the music. It is completely irrelevant for us, if some people don’t like us because we don’t come up to the genre’s expectations. We just promote us through our music. We ever try to spread our message when performing live - the most ideal platform to shed our feelings.

farsot2011 07RoD: Considering the state of how people obtain their music these days- preferably through downloading- do you think that Metal and its artists are appreciated as much as they used to be when one went out and bought records?
10.XIXt: Most of the people (majorly belonging to the “metal-scene”) just download albums to avoid miss-purchases, I guess. It is really not that stupid if you have a look on the floods of releases every month (I don’t want to say, that I do so, eh). I still remember clearly that time, when I was ordering the most crappy records just because of some good reviews (there was no MySpace, no DSL and no Rapidshare). I think our genre is blessed with a much higher purchasing power than other musical genres. You will mostly get indulged by great artworks including the whole lyrics, special-editions and stuff if you buy the records. The prices are quite OK if you order it via mail-orders. Metal is still a really appreciating genre - similarly assumed from the fans as well as from the musicians.

RoD: Ever had anyone say they’ve downloaded your album for free or illegally either in person or on a web post on your forums? What was the initial reaction?
10.XIXt: Do you like it?

RoD: So what is in the near future for FARSOT.? Upcoming tour in the works or do you prefer to remain a studio band as opposed to one on the road?
10.XIXt: FARSOT. is definitely a band which takes every opportunity to perform live. As mentioned, we already have some confirmed gigs but there are no concrete plans and offers for a tour up to now. We hope that we could do a tour with a strong line-up in 2012. We’ll see.

RoD: If you had the chance to tour with any other groups, who would you want to be a part of it and why?
10.XIXt: We went on tour with DARK FORTRESS, SERPENTCULT and SARDONIS in 2010. The line-up was perfect. Very diverse, yes, but not too different. Besides this fact, all the guys (and the girl) were amazing. We had a lot of fun and many substantial conversations. I could call it “the prime-example for a good tour” for us. If we had an equal line-up with kind and open-minded musicians, we'd be happy. Overall the bands which we'd really like to have a tour experience with would be OPETH or KATATONIA. But, therefore our style surely has to change several times, haha.

RoD: That’s about all I have for now. Any last words for fans or readers?
10.XIXt: Thank you very much for the interview. See you in front of the stage.

farsot2011 08

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