jueves, 19 de agosto de 2021



1. Culted was born in 2007, why did you decide to create the band? Why did you choose the name Culted and what does it refer to?

Mike: If you first define a cult as a group whose members hold common beliefs or values, then it follows that those individuals have been culted. Each of us have been culted. We have our beliefs and we act accordingly. 

Our biases, conditioned responses, free will, all had their genesis in the past which were passed on to each of us and defined as culture. The various ways we've been indoctrinated to believe or not believe the many paths of thought and knowledge, and to what extremes an individual is willing to hold onto or coerce others to follow a group's tightly held beliefs is fascinating. 

This is where our interest lies and is what we choose to explore to this day, hence why we are still and forever will be, Culted.

We created this collective to explore primitive riffs and beats as a response to internal, psychic stimuli.

2. It is significant that the members of the band belong to two countries as far apart as Canada and Sweden, has this been one of the reasons why Culted's releases are so widely spaced in time? a constant and regular work rate due to distance?

Matt:  I can’t speak for the rest of the guys, but I have noticed two main reasons for the spacing between releases.  

One, we like to take our time and let what we write simmer.  Our state of mind might be different months later and then songs are modified. Or, one of us buys a new piece of equipment, takes a little time to experiment with it, and now a song or many songs make more sense to us, using said equipment.  

Two, life in general can take over. If one of us is dealing with a tough situation, it will take some time to work through it, that member will come back to the songs and possibly change their perspective on a piece, or write a whole new one.

Daniel: Yeah, as Matt is saying….and the life art balance takes on another level when there is a distance between the members. One can always force a result, good or bad when it's easy just to treat it as work and put the hours in when rehearsing somewhere. Our tracks live in the cloud, always changing until the collective mind has its way with it. And sometimes life has its turns and then creativity has to wait and make room for whatever has to be prioritised. 

3. This “Nous” comes almost seven years after your second album “Oblique to All Paths”, how has the sound of the band evolved in this period of time? How has the composition and recording process of the new album been? between Canada and Sweden? What brand of instruments did you use for the composition and recording of the album?

Mike: The sound of Culted has evolved over time. I can't say specifically how, because it's not something that is planned. For example,  we are all in constant communication, sharing our lives, our interests and all of that collectively combine into what we produce first individually and then as a whole.

The process was fraught with many life-altering hardships that had to be endured and recovered from. Hence, the extended period between albums.

As far as instrumentation, we used a Gibson SG as the main guitar, Matt's Hohner acoustic guitar, a custom Darcy Bunio bass, Fender Jazz fretless bass, Moog, Keyboards through various gear, a multitude of pedals and effects, Orange Amp, MatAmp, Marshall, Mesa Boogie, Genz Benz, Ampeg, and the list goes on and on…

Daniel: The sound has evolved and matured with the collective mind I think, it  has been a natural progression of sound and composition. The way it should be.   

4. In the sound of “Nous” elements of black and doom come together, as is well known by every follower of the band, however we can also find elements that are reminiscent of industrial sounds, although without losing sight of that dark and dense characteristic of the band, is "Nous" the title of the album, a way of vindicating yourself? How would you define the sound of the album for those who have not yet heard the album?

Mike: The title "Nous" may be seen as vindication, in the sense that we had to absolve ourselves of pre-established thought patterns and to capture our attempts to reach the furthest reaches of the mind or intellect. 

We directed ourselves to dig in, to see what makes us tick at the very core of consciousness. What kind of psychic muck and murk do we have to slog through to find our "truths" and reasons to exist, create and continue on this plane of existence? Our attempts to answer aspects of these questions in the form of sound, became "Nous."

The sound may be defined as noisy, life-altering, outsider, extreme music. Or doom. Both are appropriate. It is an immersive experience.

Daniel: Industrial Blackened Doom seems to be the general term of explanation when talking about Nous, at least when reading the reviews etc. It seems fitting I guess. The idea is to produce a reality changing sonic experience. An insight in something state altering that makes you question your reality and the structures that bind us. A look into the abyss if you will. 

5. As I mentioned previously, the sound of Culted includes influences from black and doom, but without completely renouncing its own elements, taking as a reference both that the band originated in the mid-2000s as well as its musicians are part of different projects whose origins go back further in time, what have been the main influences that have helped you define the sound of Culted and in what way can we appreciate them?

Mike: That's a fun question. I would say our appreciation for the transcendent nature of music, be it black/death/doom/Industrial/heavy metal, experimental "noise" or sound artists, soundtracks, or whatever pulls us in to give it a listen, make a meaningful connection, and gives us an emotive experience. 

Daniel: That is a hard one. Too many bands and/or soundartist to mention just a few. 

6. What themes do you cover in your lyrics? Who is in charge of writing the lyrics for your albums? Do the lyrics adapt to the music once it is composed or vice versa?

Daniel: The lyrics are just one part or the process and usually they are written when the general structure of the tracks and the album are in place. I get a feeling for what path we are walking down and what the end product will sound like. Then the writing begins. I can get inspired by anything really. From watching the news to having a walk in the forest or reading a book. In general, they are up for interpretation but I do have some points that keep coming up in my lyrics. And that is control. The religious lie that keeps humanty on its knees and uses people for their own gains and scaring humanity into obedience.  It is to question, it is to question the question. Not be blinded by what you are supposed to believe and think is right but to gather information and make your own choices and follow your own path if you will. The information you need is out there. It's your fault if you don't look it up.  

7. Unlike the greater darkness represented by the covers of your first works, already in the EP "Vespertina Synaxis - A Prayer for Union & Emptiness" you can see a change in terms of theme and setting, an aspect that increases in the cover of this “Nous” Who was in charge of the cover design? What do you intend to reflect with it and in what way does it relate to the content of the album?

Mike: That is an interesting observation. The first three releases were on Relapse and Orion Landau is responsible for their art. We gave him the music and title and he came back with the images that are on each album. 

The EP "Vespertina Synaxis - A Prayer for Union & Emptiness" was our first release for Season of Mist and seemed like a new beginning, like going through and coming out of a black hole. Max Winter at Teratogen is responsible for its creation. It perfectly captures the concept of night prayers that both begs for unity with some greater aspect of being with the universe and its opposite, total annihilation. 

On "Nous" we wanted to portray the conflict of body and mind with all its trappings and revelations. I sent the others the image that appears on the cover and said, "something like this" and Daniel and Matt replied, "let's see if we can get it." It never occurred to me. So, I contacted Ettore Aldo Del Viggo, the artist responsible, and inquired. I sent him a brief message with some music and he got back to me within a day. We were able to obtain exclusive license for the piece, which was the final puzzle piece in its creation. 

8. “Nous” has been released in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic, how have you been affected as a band due to this situation? How have you kept in touch with your fans?

Mike: It changed how we were able to complete the album. Usually, Matt and I get together multiple times to add additional sounds and/or edit the existing content. That was not possible. I had to write or verbalize to him the sounds I heard that I felt needed to be added to the songs. He took my esoteric ramblings and interpreted them through his lens and performed them. It was pretty exciting to hear his interpretations. 

Keeping in touch with the audience was done through social networking and interviews like this. We also created 4 videos to accompany "Nous" which hopefully reached a larger audience. 

Daniel: For me it was all business as usual, since I am all the way across the bay everything is done through e-mail and messenger anyway. The only thing I can think of would be that since I didn't have to socialise with that many people I could actually focus more on Culted and the new album. 

9. In your beginnings you were linked to the Relapse Records record label, however with your latest works you have made the leap to Season Of Mist, a path that surely few bands could have said they have done. How does the change of a label take place? record label to another? Are you satisfied with the editing and promotion work by Season of Mist? What have you done from less than a label like Relapse Records?

Mike: Our first 3 releases were on Relapse and when our obligation to them was complete, we joined up with Season Of Mist for the next few. Both labels were fantastic to us and for us. Especially, when you consider we don't tour and put out dissonant outsider metal that is not created for mass appeal, even within extreme music.

Daniel: What he said!!!

10. If I'm not mistaken, Culted has not given a concert. Have you considered the possibility of taking the band live? How do you see the scene in your two countries of origin, Canada and Sweden?

Mike: We've considered, but quickly dismissed it. Not financially feasible. Both countries have vibrant art and music scenes. 

Matt:  We have seriously considered live, but in order for us to do it any justice, like Mike said, it’s just not financially feasible.  So, instead, I started to introduce the guys to bring Culted to video.  It seemed like a natural progression, instead of going live.

11. How were your beginnings in music: first concerts you attended, first albums you bought? What did you do in your lives that made you want to be musicians?

Mike: I got the Beach Boys greatest hits as an eighth birthday and then for Christmas that year I received The Police's Ghost in the Machine, both spent a lot of time on the turntable. 

The first album I bought, I got off a kid from church whose older brother had "found God" and was getting rid of his rock records. I got Scorpions Blackout and AC/DC's Let There Be Rock on cassette and Ozzy's Blizzard of Ozz on LP. I think it cost me 10 bucks for all 3. It was a great day. 

The first concert I attended was Metallica on And Justice For All with the The Cult opening. Ian Astbury threw a fit during their last song and stormed off the stage. It was fantastic! 

Music was an escape from a stifling and boring, puritanical, religious upbringing. As soon as I picked up the guitar, I knew I held salvation in my hands and had to get one. Metallica was probably the most influential in making me want to become a musician and write songs.

Daniel: Music has always been a way for me to block everything out. A form of meditation. I remember that as a kid I could just put on my walkman and just sit and listen for hours. It was like nothing else mattered but to be in that moment totally absorbed by sound. My older cousin got me into Black Sabbath when I was only 7 or 8 years old and then I got into other metal bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest etc. When I first heard Slayer it was like a celestial experience and then it just snowballed into Punk, Death Metal and then on to Black Metal and Industrial. 

Matt:  On my mother’s side of the family, they are all musicians, mainly religious music.  My sister’s older friends introduced me to Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Zeppelin, Anthrax, Megadeth, Metallica, Slayer, which quickly turned to me discovering Death Metal and Black Metal.  

My grandfather could play any instrument.  He owned a music store for many years which introduced me to playing organ, piano, guitar, bass, drums,…..etc…etc..  The main instrument that grabbed me was the guitar.  I have been obsessed with it since I was a toddler.  One would think I would be a better guitar player, but what I did discover, for me, playing around with so many options opened my mind to seeing instruments not individually, but as a whole.  Don’t get me wrong, I love some very talented instrumentalists that single out instruments incredibly, but I found everything makes a sound and everything can have it’s place to help achieve the sound that one is trying to build.  Later, I started to learn how to multi-track and mess around with sounds with an Amiga 1000 and the electronic side of music started to intrigue me.  

Listening and playing music is a big part of my life, a way for me to escape, communicate and just plain deal with life to move forward.

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

Mike: To me, the essence of black metal resides in many albums, put out by many bands, over many years. But, if I have to list a few, I would highlight Darkthrone's Transylvanian Hunger, Samael's Worship Him, Beherit's Drawing Down the Moon, Ulver's Nattens Madrigal, Dissection's Storm of the Light's Bane, Emperor's In the Nightside Eclipse, Burzum's Hvis lyset tar os, Mayhem's De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas, Marduk's Opus Nocturne and on and on…

The last black metal album I bought was Inferno's Paradeigma (Phosphenes of Aphotic Eternity), and the last album I bought was Amenra's De Doorn.

Daniel: Mike mentioned most of the essentials right there. There are many more, but that was a good round up. 

Matt:  Mike summed that up perfectly.  The last two albums I bought at the same time.  Akhlys - Melinoe LP, and the Eyehategod - A History of Nomadic Behavior LP.

13. What more immediate plans do you have for the band, in terms of upcoming releases, reissues, upcoming releases, etc ...?

Mike: We're currently working on the next album.

Matt:  We have done some upgrades to our studios, and like Mike said, are moving on to the next album.  

14. Thank you very much for taking the time to Black Metal Spirit, if you want to add something for the followers of Culted, this is the place. I hope the questions are to your liking.

Mike: Thank you for the interview, and thanks to those that read it and have listened to our albums. We intend to go further into the void and beyond for our next sonic exploration. 


Isengard ‎– Vinterskugge 20,99 €

This edition of Vinterskugge is presented on double vinyl with gatefold sleeve including additional lyrics & previously unseen photos.

Mastering, pressing company and mastering engineer uncredited, identified by the matrix.

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