Thursday, February 22, 2018

Interview with Steve Fabry from The Nightstalker and Sercati (Belgium)

This time Lachryma Christi would like to present you a interview with Steve Fabry. He is the bass player and singer of the band Sercati and the only man behind The Nightstalker.
The Nightstalker is a Atmospheric Dark Metal band which released the fourth album in January 2017 A Journey in Hell under Wolfshade records.
Fabry wrote a book on the story.

As for Sercati, they play Black Metal with progressive and ambient influences. They released their third record, an EP called In the Shadows and Sidewalks in May 2015 under Wormhole Death.

The two bands share the same concept about the adventures of an angel descended from heaven to help humanity. As Lucifer learns that, he will send troops to destroy and annihilate.

Let's see what Fabry has to say. 
And a review should come up very shortly too. 

Sercati and The Nightstalker share a running concept. What is the background of this and how are the two projects linked?

The two musical projects share the story of a character. The Nightstalker. A fallen angel who's decided to help Mankind against his evil brother Lucifer.
The two projects keep the Nightstalker at the center of the lyrics but take two different paths with the music and the way to speak about him.

Sercati focuses on the main story, The Nightstalker is more personal, more on the characters. 

How did the project arise and what were the original goals of the project? 

It did begin with Sercati. When we wrote the lyrics for the first album, I really wanted to have a story to link the songs of the album. For this I created the Nightstalker.
After recording the album of Sercati, Yannick told me to write the lyrcis but like a story throught the eyes of the main character. I really like to do it.
I've written a second story and a third until having enough different short novels to make a book. 

Sercati was really good but I needed to go deeper in the mind of the character so I created with Yannick's help a side project called The Nightstalker.
It was very nice to take his point of view and spend more time on some parts of the story.

I think the two projects are really perfect to complete each other.

How did the idea of doing the concept come about?

It was just when I saw a movie. My favorite movie is The Dark Knight. When I saw it for the first time, all the beginning of the story of the Nightstalker came in my mind.
I watch this movie four times a year to keep the original feeling in my head.

How has the concept progressed with the two projects and how far to go with it do you have planned for the future?

The concept becomes more and more complex with all the projects. Not only with the two musical projects but with all the ideas of each member. The universe created this way belongs to everybody not only to me.
I hope it will go on this way with new members in the future. Each conversation or each idea is a piece of this universe.

I really like the feeling that everybody has a influence on it.

For example, I didn't imagine making a movie like a found footage. It's just in a conversation that the idea comes in our mind. There is a lot of possibility, just to find the right person.
Actually we try some new stuff like a comic book and a video game. We hope to finish them. We would like to start another movie too but we don't know how to start it for now.
And finally the book takes a big place in the universe, i'm actually working on the second part and the third. 

How would you describe your style of music and how does it fit in with the themes?

For Sercati, it's black metal style with a lot of influences like pagan and other stuff. It's the right style to tell the main story with action. Something strong and really rythmic.

For The Nightstalker, it's sounds like ambient black metal because it's about inner feelings of the main character. Something really personnal.

What music or bands are you inspired by and how do they influence your musical output?
Without hesitation, Satanic Warmaster. I really like the songs and the work on the music (the different versions of Wolves of Blood and Iron are just amazing)
Agalloch too. It's a part of the music with Alcest and Fall of Rauros we like a lot.

What were you influenced with in regards to the concept?

I can say it with a big smile: Batman is the main influence. The Nolan version in the last trilogy. But not only The Dark Knight.
We also use elements from Catholicism. We keep in our mind some books of the Bible, to use this mythology for us and fit as well as possible with it.
We don't want talk about religion, we use it as a background to create our story. 

How do the two projects differ?

In different aspects, the two projects are different.

First is the music, Sercati is more nervous and with energy, The Nightstalker is more ambient and dark. The way to write the songs are really different too.
The Nightstalker is more spontaneous than Sercati. For Sercati we spend a lot of time on the songs together.

The second point is about the lyrics. The story is the same but the writing is different. In The Nightstalker, we stay focused the felling of the main character.
It's based on his point of view and his own feeling, how does he see the world around him and the other characters. Sercati tells the main story.  

The third point is about the composition and mixing and mastering. With Sercati, we work with Jonathan Mazzeo (amazing sound engineer) for our release.
But in the Nightstalker, I do recording, mixing and mastering by myself. So it's more spontaneous. Something more personal even in the way to work the sound. 

How have your ideas or output changed since the beginning if at all? 

They've changed a lot for many reasons. We are not the same persons. We have met a lot of people who changed our vision of music (I think of Jonathan Mazzeo, Carlo Bellotti and Andriy Molchan,...)
We need to evolve, like the story finally evolves with us, but without forgetting what was the beginning and the main meaning.

I said previously that for the first album, we have created the Nightstalker to have an album with all songs linked in one story. But since the first release of the Nightstalker

and the other album of Sercati, we work in the opposite way. We have the story and finally we write the music after the lyrics now. We write the music to support the lyrics.

What is it that you feel more encapsulates the full vision of what the band has been driving towards?

I think the concept is taking paths other than music but all is linked not only by the story but by the same faith to spread the story of the Nightstalker.
The vision is evolving on each new partnership. It's difficult the find only one kind of media to have the full vision.

The next album of Sercati (will be released soon) is more "cinematics" than the olders. We were very happy to take this way and it's more easier to give the story.
The movie (also released soon) gives the right ambiance about the city. But each media have his own signification in the full vision.

What is it about the style/genre of music you play that drives you to create it?

I don't think it's the style / genre of music who drives us to create. It's the story. We use the music to tell a story. Each part of our songs is created for the story.
We try to give music feeling according with the lyrics. It's very important to us to have this way to write music. The music is there to support the story.

How important is it for you to gain a more varied international audience?

Our goal is touch a lot of people, not for popularity but to give a message. I think through the Nightstalker and his story we can give a good message for everyone.
I hope the Nightstalker will become something bigger than us and our band. 

What if any would you say are the differences or similarities of your audience from different countries? Do you have any favourite places to play for example?

It's awful to say but we have more echoes from the audience from other countries than from ours. It's always a pleasure to play in our country but metal (specially our kind of metal) hasn't got
many places to play at. The venues are really difficult to reach.

You also have a book about the character. What is it about and how did that idea arise?

The idea to write a book came out when the music wasn't enough to tell the story of The Nightstalker. I take the time to write Sercati's whole first album in story. 
But I've developped a taste for writting this story and I've told another one and another until having enough for a book. 

In the first book, we discover how the Nightstalker came on Earth and his beginning as a nocturnal avenger.

Do you have plans for any more books or even films?

Yes, I've got a lot of ideas in my mind. I hope to realize all of them. I work on the sequel of the first book with my editor. 
After filming some short movies, we've worked on a "found footage" with some good friends. Kenny Vrancken, Ludovic Englebert, Michel Garsou and many others.
It was really nice to have all of them with us for this adventure. We hope to release it soon.

I have some project about a comic-book. I would like to have a bigger visual with the universe of our character. 

What are the future plans for the band? Long term and short term.

Short term : New album release for Sercati and The Nightstalker. We are working on it. A video clip for Sercati and The Nightstalker too. And the new book.
Long term : A comic book, I hope. A movie, another type that a found footage. And a lot of gigs.

Anything you would like to say to your current or potential future fans?

Listen our songs and The Nightstalker will watch over you...

Read more about The Nightstalker here:

Read more about Sercati here:

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