lunes, 12 de abril de 2021


 1. At what point did you decide to create Echushkya? Why did you decide to use the name Echushkya and what does it refer to?

A: Hello and thanks for inviting me to answer these questions.  Things are, shall we say, ever the same here in Ohio.  The reason for creating Echushkya is quite simple: I wanted an outlet for several ideas I had for black metal pieces that didn't fit into what I was doing with The Wakedead Gathering and my other projects.  Echushkya allows me to be more experimental, atmospheric and incorporate other non-metal elements into the music.  The name is actually an alternate spelling for Each-uisge, which is a water horse creature from Celtic mythology.  Since the themes of each release relate to Celtic mythology I thought it an appropriate name.

2. How does a band like Echushkya fit in in the midst of other projects that it is part of like Invultation, Longbarrow or The Wakedead Gathering? Is Echushkya an escape route in the form of black metal with respect to your other projects more related to the death metal?

A: Yes, exactly.  Echushkya is not quite as defined in the genre as my other projects so I feel free to experiment more with different styles and sounds.  Whereas with Invultation, for example, you'll never hear light melodies or clean guitars or vocals.  Perhaps I'm getting too carried away with too many projects, but somehow it just doesn't feel right to assign music to a specific project if it doesn't fit with the overall style of that project, if that makes sense.

3. Your music is based on an important guitar work offering a good number of inspired riffs, while recreating an icy atmosphere, how is your way of working on the themes that end up being part of Echushkya's albums? Some section of the recording that resists you the most? What brands of instruments used to compose and record?

A: I usually sit down and play around with different riffs with a ton of reverb added to the guitar and then start layering riffs together to create more atmosphere and melody.  Sometimes I'll write entire sections on bass or drums as well.  It really just depends on the feeling that is pulling at me in the moment.  I also like to immerse myself in the local nature and pay attention to the sounds and things that I see to inspire me to write in a certain way.  Echushkya is, as a whole, inspired by nature and the power and beauty that it holds.  The synth sections are probably the most challenging as I've never been trained on piano so it's a bit of a struggle to properly convey my ideas in those parts, but I've managed so far.  Equipment-wise I alternate between a B.C. Rich ASM and Epiphone Les Paul Custom with a JB in the bridge.  Too many different amps and effects to mention here, honestly haha.  I also use two different basses – A Warwick Corvette and Fender P-bass.

4. The sound of the album is reminiscent of the atmospheric black metal of the second wave, in a clear reference to the Scandinavian scene, how would you describe the sound of Echushkya for those who have not heard it yet? Which bands have had a direct influence on you a when defining the sound of Echushkya?

A: That's a tough question.  I don't know that I would be able to draw a direct comparison to other bands but I'd say that Echushkya is kind of an American version of the more atmospheric Finnish black metal bands, with sections of dungeon synth thrown in.  And, speaking of Finnish bands, my main influences are bands like Circle of Ouroborus, Keres, Cosmic Church, etc.  Also, of course, bands like Darkthrone and even Wolves In The Throne Room.

5. The theme of your lyrics seems to cover fantastic themes and also related to mythology. What could you tell us about the theme of Echushkya's lyrics? Why did you decide to treat these themes in your texts? the texts to music or the other way around?

A: Yes, the lyrics are a mix of Celtic mythology and Luciferian ritual.  In fact, each release is based upon a cardinal direction and its associated element and corresponding “Prince” of Hell.  I know it sounds a bit convoluted, but there are so many elements in stories in Celtic lore that fit these themes.  Each album or EP is also a story that I have crafted of my own, using these themes and elements to build the structure.  The way that I work is very much music-based so the lyrics come after all of the instrumental parts are recorded and the lyrics fit to the music. 

6. Echushkya's latest release to date is the compilation "Earth and Sea" which includes his first demo "Dust and Ethers" and the first full-length "Ara II", leaving aside his most recent EP "The Lanterne. "Why are you making this decision regarding the track-list? Will the two previously unreleased tracks included in“ Earth and Sea ”mark the way forward in terms of Echushkya's sound in the future?

A: That compilation was done in that way because there is another EP planned which will then also be combined with “The Lanterne” as a compilation.  At least, that's the plan as of right now.  The two unreleased tracks were really written to compliment “Earth and Sea” so they are not necessarily an indication of the sound going forward.

7. The cover of “Earth and Sea” is practically identical to that of “Ara II”, why did you make this decision regarding the artwork? Could you explain a little more the title of “Earth and Sea” and how it is related with the content and music of Echushkya?

A: Yes, the artwork is basically the same because we wanted to include the original artwork for both releases in the design and booklet.  There are some new paintings and other art included in the booklet of the compilation so not everything is the same.  The title comes from the elements associated with the first two releases, which are Earth and Water (North and West).  That's a very basic explanation but that's the entire meaning behind the title.

8. The physical edition on CD of "Earth and Sea" was carried out by Schattenkult Produktionen, how did the contact and the possibility of making this edition come about through Schattenkult Produktionen? Are you satisfied with the promotion and editing work carried out by Schattenkult Produktionen?

A: Schattenkult actually contacted me via email and we exchanged quite a few ideas for CD versions of the releases that I already had out.  We eventually agreed on a compilation with a few bonus tracks because it would be its own unique release and something that would add to the overall work so far.  He handled all of the artwork and layout and was extremely professional and efficient in his handling of the release.  I couldn't be more pleased with the result so I look forward to working with Schattenkult Produktionen in the future.

9. What can you tell us about the extreme metal scene in Ohio? Because of its proximity to Canada you feel more influenced perhaps by the black metal scene in Quebec than by that of your own country? Has 2020 been a good year for black metal in the US?

A: Ohio has three major cities in Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland and the scenes are different in each one.  I can only really speak about Columbus and there is a somewhat small but devoted following for extreme metal here.  I see a lot of familiar faces at shows (when they are allowed to happen) and there is a general sense of community.  There are a lot of different genres represented and talented individuals located throughout the whole state.  I wouldn't say that I or anyone else is necessarily influenced by the Canadian scene due to proximity.  With the internet making music so easily accessed globally there really isn't much of a regional influence anymore.  Overall I think 2020 was a good year for black metal in the US and 2021 looks to be even better.  The pandemic has certainly allowed for more time to write for most musicians. 

10. How has Echushkya been affected in terms of promotion and sales by Covid-19? Does this period of Covid-19 see it as an opportunity to compose new material, make yourself known and maintain contact with the fasns, or however has it been a rather dark period for you?

A: Personally, not much has changed due to COVID.  Since Echushkya is a one-man entity there was never a live setting to worry about and since I had to continue to work my regular job my schedule remained the same.  I think, if anything, I became more inspired by the isolation and general lack of interaction with people.  The pandemic has also, I think, hurt a lot of people and fans because of the financial hardship so any support I have received over the last year is very much appreciated and I have a lot of respect for those who want to help musicians during this time.

11. How were your beginnings in music: first albums you bought, first concerts you attended? What happened in your life made you want to dedicate yourself to music?

A: The first sort of music I got into was hair metal because of my mother but I remember getting some albums of Slayer, Megadeth and bands of that style.  The moment I decided to dedicate my life to music was when I first picked up a guitar at around age 10.  I took lessons for a few years and ever since then it's been my main passion in life.  I've been involved in bands in many different genres throughout my life but I always come back to metal as it just speaks to me and connects in a way that other genres do not.

12. Which album represents to you the essence of black metal? What recent albums have you bought?

A: Some classics that I believe define the genre, at least for me, are: The first 3 black metal Darkthrone albums, Sorhin - “Apokalypsens Angel”, Frozen Graves - “S/T” and both Negative Plane albums.  Some highlights that I've purchased recently are the new Venus Star, Kūka'ilimoku, Black Vice, Aethyrick, Mistcavern, Misotheismus, Aara and Lamp of Murmuur.

13. What can we expect in the immediate future for Echushkya? What are your short-term plans for this project?

A: I am currently working on the 4th release, which I expect to be finished by the end of the year or early 2022.  This may start as another tape-only release and find its way onto another comp with “The Lanterne.”  There hasn't been an announcement yet but also look for the vinyl reissues of the first three releases coming soon.  Beyond that we will see where inspiration takes me.  Once the fourth EP/Album is complete that will finish the quadrology and the focus will shift to a different theme.

14. Thank you very much for the time dedicated to Black Metal Spirit, if you want to add something for Echushkya r fans this is the place. I hope the questions have been to your liking

A: Thank you for the questions and support.  Thank you to everyone who has supported Echushkya, either by purchasing the music or with kind words.  Ave!


Ereb Altor ‎– Järtecken 17,99 €

Black vinyl version.

Gatefold sleeve.

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