the RING : interview with Jakob Samuel
Scarlet Records and GryphonMetal.ch review "Tales of Midgard"
e-mail interview by
Marco "Norman Knight" Signore ___
LIST OF RINGS GOES ON
this is Marco from GryphonMetal.ch. We are here with the mythical The
Ring, and I want to thank you, first of all, because possibly you brought
in music the dream of thousands and thousands of Metalheads and Tolkien
fans. And so, what made you conceive such an ambitious project as The
it is, maybe to much for my own good but it has certainly been a thrill.
It all started with me reading an article about the filming of Lord of the
Rings and how Tolkien has used the different old Nordic and Celtic legends
and myths of The Ring in the weaving of the story.
You managed to capture the atmosphere with almost "essential"
music, never using too many keyboards and virtuosoís. Was it difficult
to compose songs about the most famous non-religious book in the history
music came very natural actually with an easy flow like we knew where we
were going, which wasnít the case, the lyrics was harder though and was
rewritten a number of times.
Now a question about the lyrics. As I remarked in my review, you never
used any of the names of people or places in your lyrics. Nonetheless,
every song is a masterpiece of lyrics. You managed to capture the feeling
and use phrases of the book without actually using them... such as
"Are you afraid? Not enough" in Into the Wild, or "lead us
on crownless king" in The Gates of Doom. Was it difficult to write a
set of lyrics for this project?
definitely, itís been quite a trip, but Iíve always had a great
interest in the lyrics part of the work, I made quite a few versions of it
and with some good correction/angle help of some very dedicated
people ( check the thanks list on the album ) it turned out to something
really cool to me.
How do you see the works of professor Tolkien? Do you really think that
those who try to use his works for political reasons are craps, or are
was a giant, simple as that, Tolkien
took inspiration from not only the British fables but also a lot of the
Nordic Asa tales and the old Germanium folklore and believes and
of course you can view this kind of complex story in a political way but
if that was the intention I can
And what about fantasy in general? Tell us of your approach to fantasy.
not a great fan of the genre in general. Like
so many others we grew up reading those books from time to time and itís
definitely one of my all time favourites but the album is not specifically
meant to deal with only Tolkiens stories. During the writing process
Iíve been as the album title reveals inspired by mainly the Tales from
Midgard with myths of Favners bane and every thing from Wagner's Rheingold
how Alberich cursed love and forged The Ring of power to Z. Topelius work
with The Swedish King Carl XII and the myth of his Ring of power and
the list of Rings goes on.
How do you think that fantasy influenced Metal music?
strongly through the years, it seem to be a great combination of the two
Now tell us about your "tolkienian" colleagues: Blind Guardian,
no idea that any one done it before until the album was ready and I
havenít heard any of the other attempts, we
have of course hard to believe that anyone can match our fantastic,
thunderous metal album.
And what about other "fantasy"
Power Metallers, such as
Rhapsody, Domine or Hammerfall? Do you think that we are going too far or
that the power-fantasy productions are more than adequate and good?
really donít have the
knowledge to have an opinion, I know these bands musical quality too little
but a good album is a good album, each production/band speaks for itself
not itís genre.
Now something about your music. Some people have criticized you in the
choice of music. You avoided the Power Metal "standard" both in
music and lyrics (and IMHO this is well done!) and instead relay on almost
"old fashioned" metal music. Do you think that your sonorities
are adequate to the modern metal world?
were in the point where we really wanted to do a great classic metal album
on the peak of our ability as far as played, singed, written and performed
with the atmosphere of the bibles we listened to as teens, that really
takes you to a different time and place.
I have seen that practically all of you play all the instruments in the
CD. But what will happen when you will come to live performance?
are actually putting a live setting together right now we are doing some
shows in Stockholm in September then weíll see what happens. A drummer
and a bass player is called for, they will be official soon but not now.
And talking about live performance, will you tour Europe with your
are looking for a production company to set the show on the road letís
hope for the best. Many plans nothing readyÖ
Finally here we are with the Game of the Tower. This is a game we always
play with the bands we interview for the first time. You are on a high
tower, and you have three bands there with you. You have to push down two
of them saving just one. Just one, remember. Now, you are with Rhapsody,
Blind Guardian, and Hammerfall. Which ones will you throw down from the
itís not nice to through down your old friends and I think Anders,
Magnus and the rest of Hammerfall would have the safest seatÖif they
A salutation from you to all the Metalheads out there...
a little patience waiting for us to get online soon our home page will be
up and we really hope to see you soon on tourÖNow,
bring us that horizonÖ
you very much for your kindness, and I hope to hear you soon live in
Italy!! All the best and my compliments again!
© GryphonMetal.ch 2001-2004Niederrohrdorf - Switzerland