Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Interview with Phyrexia (UK)

Phyrexia are a band that plays Epic Extreme Metal. They are from London (UK) and they began their course as a band in 2008. Even being a relatively recent band, they are already about to release their first album, and they already had a very good experience by being on the same stage as Bal-Sagoth last year. 
If you haven't had the chance to see them live, you will have a great opportunity in July the14th at the Fighting Cocks in Kingston.
You can learn a bit more about them on the interview below, with Dan Saunders, who plays guitar and sings as second vocals.

How did Phyrexia start?

Much the same as a lot of bands; I was playing music with a couple of people from high-school when I was 15/16 - It wasn't long before I began writing my own stuff. In true dramatic teenage fashion the 'band' disintegrated after a couple of months and I kept on working on the material outside of my studies. About a year later I did some really basic demos and got a full lineup together, utilising the contacts I'd made through other bands, music projects, etc. It's been going ever since.

Do you consider that it was hard to "stand on your proper legs" as a band? We can't forget that you started only in 2008 (or so sources say), and in 4 years you are already in a good place!

That's correct, things only really got underway circa 2008. It has been difficult at times - we are relatively young musicians and have never played what's fashionable or popular. On the other hand this has in turn led to a strong sense of identity and independence - we haven't ever relied on anyone else and we've always tried to handle the situations as they arise as best we can, taking the next logical steps to up our game. We've always firmly believed in crafting our own opportunities, and I think our hard work is reflected in what we've achieved in that time.

What are your main influences? What bands do you think had the biggest contribution as an influence to your music?

Every member has their own influences and they are reflected, however subtly, in the music. As far as musical direction goes bands like Rhapsody, Rotting Christ, Emperor, Chthonic, Iced Earth, Iron Maiden, Bal-Sagoth, so on and so forth come to mind. Video Game Music has also played a massive role (especially the music from the Castlevania franchise). We've also taken a lot of influence from our contemporaries and the bands we've played with, most notably Reaping Havoc and Carpathia.

In your myspace profile it says you consider yourself as an Epic Extreme metal band. Can you describe that concept a bit? What exactly do you feel when you say "Epic Extreme"?

 'Epic' has always been a constant term used to describe the music - even in the earliest days it was how I described what I wanted to write when auditioning members. We've always just wanted to capture that very grand, over the top fantasy vibe with our music, and we wanted to play extreme metal. We decided on the self proclaimed 'Epic Extreme Metal' tag a few years ago as the best way to describe our music, rather than 'symphonic blackened power death'. We have a lot of musical ideas from across many influences, and describing the music in terms of what genre we fit in with just doesn't do it justice.

What was the highest moment of your career so far? The moment you consider as the most remarkable and important for the development of the band?

I would say when we supported our long time influence Bal-Sagoth in July last year. It was definitely one of the best times we'd performed as a band and we drew a very handsomely sized crowd. It was just great to play a show with a band who'd inspired us so much!

What can we expect of your new album? When is it really supposed to come out? Sampler sounds quite good!

Thank you! It's scheduled for a Summer release - we're probably looking at late July to mid August. The artwork has just been completed so we're just figuring out the funding for printing, and then it'll be ready! We can't wait to release it - the foundations for some of the tracks on it were laid down nearly 5 years ago, so we're looking forward to moving on, but also to having something more representative of us. The quality of the recording and our performance has improved tenfold since our last release. We're really happy with it and we think, considering the response to the sampler, a lot of people may be pleasantly surprised!

How do you see the underground metal scene in London? We could expand this question to UK or even to Europe but let's say London for now.

It is what it is and we've never known anything different, so it's difficult to have any real perspective. We figure that our music would probably be more popular in other regions like Scandinavia and Japan, but that said we're extremely grateful to the fans who consistently come down to our shows. There are some great nights for underground metal in London (for example the free entry nights at the Unicorn), but like anywhere else there is a supply and demand problem which leads to a not so healthy scene.

How do you see the roll of social networks in the development and advertising of an underground band? Do you think they make life easier for bands now, compared to bands from 90's, for instance, where everything was by post and radio? Or do you think things became more trivial?

Again this is part of the supply and demand issue. I think that in generally with the internet and social networking people are becoming more detached from the real world and real events (like live shows) - it's a lot less effort to stream or download a track than it is to go out, pay entry and travel to see a band. It's a completely different experience and because of the surplus supply maybe the demand for that live experience simply isn't as high as it was 2 decades ago. It really depends on what direction you want to take your band in. It's certainly harder to make an impact based on the live experience, but the live scene is by no means dead. It's a lot easier to get exposure to a wider and global audience, but it's also more difficult to make an impression on them. That isn't necessarily a negative thing - it's just change, and if you're going to be in a band today there isn't any point in wishing it was 1992 again.

Does any of you have any side projects?

Yes - Paul and Tom play in Carpathia, which is a UK Progressive Extreme Metal outfit. Elliot plays with Aeternum (UK) and Simon plays with Premature Birth.

Any upcoming shows you want to advertise here?

Currently we only have one booked - July 14th at the Fighting Cocks in Kingston.

Any advice you want to give to new bands?

Nothing beyond taking what you will from this interview!

Elliot Beaver - Vocals 
Dan Saunders - Guitar, Second Vocals 
Vicki Thompson - Keyboards
Paul Nazarkardeh - Guitar
Simon McAuliffe - Bass 
Tom Atherton - Drums


Children of the Dawn (2011 EP)

(All photos are courtesy of Phyrexia)

You can find more information and music of Phyrexia on the following websites:


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Interview with Velório (POR)

Two weeks after Lachryma Christi being launched online, its debut interview is with a Portuguese black metal project named Velório (which in English means “wake”). This project is a one-man-band, and this man is Angel-o, who has been playing in various bands along his course since the 90’s, and he also plays as session musician in shows of bands like IRAE and Corpus Christii, as you will have the opportunity to read.

How did the idea of the project emerge and why the name "Velório"?

The project arose from the collection of riffs that I've been accumulating on tapes and hard drives since 1997, when I played in a band called Amphion, and over the years a lot of material was not used in the bands where I used to play, as those bands involved people who did not share the same love and devotion to black metal.
As for the name “Velório”, the project has followed me since that time but I never assumed it as bands in question were inclined mostly to death / thrash metal. By the time I was showing some stuff to some people, I was invited to participate in the compilation Lusitania Dark Horde II and everything fell into place from there. Velório, reveals the issues I discuss as well as the will to ensure that we live in a mankind with disdain even if sometimes it is needed to desecrate gods, entities that contribute to the mentality of these times.

Is Velório supposed to be just a studio project? Wouldn’t you like to play your music live?

It's a complicated question because I have been repeatedly confronted with it, but today it is a personal project and playing it live would also be very complicated because it would have to have four guitars at once doing different things, which could compromise the work done in the studio. Also it is complicated to find faithful and available people to do it, because as I mentioned in the first question it has not been easy these years to find someone to do it so just at the moment playing live does not make sense.

In the songs of Velório we can hear some samples of masses (perhaps wakes!). How did you access them? Did you record them live yourself?

Yes, the samples used were taken from my father's funeral where I caught the Mass in its entirety, as well as the surrounding chants at the ceremony. There are also some sounds created at home.

It is very difficult to find information about Velório, perhaps because the project is relatively recent. After the release of the split with IRAE, "Deceiver's Light", is there any plan for an album of Velório?

Apart from the split with IRAE "Deceiver's Light" there is the compilation European Lusitania Dark Horde II where you can find the theme "The Rite of Lord Black." As for the album it is already recorded, just waiting for the final mix and then I will have to see the best proposals to launch it.

How did the idea of the split with IRAE come out? How has the reaction / acceptance of the public to the same been?

From what I remember, the idea of ​​the split with IRAE came through an invitation in a night of drinks with Vulturius, as well as invocations to Satan and other related activities at the studio SATHR, and so far there has been a very positive feedback about both projects.

Why a name in Portuguese, and English lyrics?

Because that’s what I feel at the moment and because originally I was working some texts with Mork (grimfaug) for the album that will come out, and it made more sense to follow the same concept. In the split, I wrote in full about the moment I was living. But there will be something in the future in Portuguese, of course.

What are your influences? Not only musically but also in terms of concept.

The influences behind Velório are essentially personal experiences associated with death, pain, indifference to life and above all much anger, having the influence of Lucifer as background. Musically there is certainly a strong connection with bands that were remarkable to me in the 90’s such as Abigor, Setherial, Isvind, Summoning ...

As well as a session musician in concerts with IRAE  and Chorpus Christii, are you currently involved in any other band / project? Are Panzerfrost really extinct?

At the moment I find myself just focused in Corpus Christii in concert and I am also available again to work with Nocturnus Horrendus in the new album of Corpus Christii. As for IRAE, there are a few records in my studio which I do not know when they will be launched, but I will be available to continue working also with Vulturius. There are partnerships related to Black Metal in which I will be participating but nothing I can reveal at the moment. For reasons of distance I  no longer find myself playing with Coldborn, Belgian band, nor with Flagellum Dei nor Panzerfrost. The change of residence made the methods of composition and rehearsals with Panzerfrost incompatible with the involved members, although I have much material done. That’s an issue that is not only up to me to decide.

How do you consider the black metal underground scene right now? In Portugal, for example, there are phases in which there have been many bands in the same style and only one or two survive. Soon after there comes another new "wave", and history repeats itself. How do you see this scenario?

I see it with some sadness because there were great bands that I liked a lot and that moment's gone and now, as you say, the cycle repeats itself, yet there is something positive about it : only the faithful remain! In the national (Portuguese) underground there are many good bands, which I hope won’t change their style when new waves appear (or changing their style to what is supposed to be more cool at that moment) but there will be those characters who will continue again with what they have created! I will not condemn anyone, as one follows what they wish. I only regret the wipe of thrash in recent years just because it is cool and old school ...

Is there any message you'd like to leave to the followers of Velório and followers of black metal in general, or even to the bands that are currently starting their course?

Do what thou wilt.

(All photos are courtesy of Angel-o)


Deceiver's Light (Split with IRAE)                                            

Lusitânia Dark Horde II (compilation)

You can find more information and music of Velório on the following websites:

(Interview was translated from Portuguese)

Sunday, June 10, 2012


Interviews with Velório (POR) and Phyrexia (UK) should come up soon!

Monday, June 4, 2012


Lachryma Christi comes from an old idea of a newsletter that used to exist in 1998/1999, as a support to portuguese metal bands.
On those times, everything used to be in paper format. Although paper format makes everything so much more exciting, a blog is always a nice support to work and a nice way of spreading the word. Paper format should be available in some circumstances though.

The old newsletter used to support portuguese metal bands. Lachryma Christi will not support only portuguese bands, but will support mostly underground blackmetal bands from everywhere.

Any ideas are welcome, any bands interested in cooperating are welcome. And probably some modifications in the layout of the page will still occur. So feel free to criticize constructively.

Stay tuned, and if you wish you may write to lachrymachristizine@gmail.com

First interview should come out very soon.

Thank you