September 12, 2014

Filthy Interview - 'Infestus'

Back in April, Trevor Proctor reviewed the quite magnificent album, The Reflecting Void, from Infestus. It's certainly one of the best releases of 2014, thus far, so it is a privilege for us to post this interview with Infestus' main man, Andras, which was composed by Trevor. Read, enjoy and then buy the album!

Lair of Filth (LoF) - Having reviewed your new album; The Reflecting Void, for The Lair of Filth, I've given it many listens and am very very impressed with it, for me it’ll certainly be one of the best albums of the year – how satisfied are you with the final result?

Infestus - Thanks. It is an amazing piece of art, both musically and emotionally. This album is worth to be called the successor of “Ex|Ist” and even more. 

LoF - How would you describe your music to anyone who may not have heard it yet?

Infestus - A dark and demanding, multifaceted musical expression with an intense personal nature. Soul-corroding art. 

LoF - For me this is definitely your most progressive album to date, would you agree and was this sound intended from the outset? 

Infestus - Yes, you are right. With this album I included more aspects of my musical taste which led me away from black metal to some degree. This is something that I didn’t do on the last album. I don’t remember why, but that’s not important. Anyway, the intention was to draw a more complete picture of my musical personality already at the start of composing. And I managed this quite well, I think. 

LoF - I understand you are responsible for all writing, playing; mixing and even played a part in the design of the album’s cover - does being the sole contributor help or hinder the creative process, and do you feel it brings added pressure? Also, which instrument do you like playing the least?

Infestus - Yes, that’s right. I am really behind everything you hear. For the design of the album cover I worked together with my live guitarist Ain. The artwork fits perfectly to the album’s concept. I think that the creative process behind my music is dependent on me being the only contributor. As it nourishes on my personality, it becomes something very authentic, deriving from just one mind, describing very serious and personal conditions and introspective issues. When I listen to my music it is like a mirror to my soul reflecting parts of me that I had to transfer into the physical world….a futile effort of cleaning my inner self; because ultimately –if you ask me-, catharsis is an illusion.

Of course you have way more stress by doing everything yourself. I have problems with handing over responsibility. So I prefer to do everything myself. Perhaps stress is not the right word. Effort fits better. Doing everything yourself on this level demands a lot of work and devotion towards it. 

Hehe, I think bass would be the less interesting instrument for me, although it is a very important one. But less interesting doesn’t mean I don’t like to play it. 

LoF - How long were you working on The Reflecting Void and does the recording process take much longer when working alone than when recording with a group?

Infestus - Altogether it took 3 years until it was released. Songwriting usually takes something like 1,5-2years. After that, I successively record every single instrument which of course needs more time than in a band because I have to prepare for every instrument recording separately. Of course, mixing is also a very time-demanding procedure. And finally the artwork and layout…yes, in contrast to a band that works together with sound engineers and designers my approach needs much more time. But with that the output becomes something entirely different, way more personal and authentic. It draws a more complete picture of the mind behind the music since it is present in every production step. 

LoF - The artwork on the album is exceptional – what influenced it and have you known Ain for long?

Infestus - I came to know Ain when I was gathering a live line-up in 2012. After some talks about the concept of the album he came up with a basic idea of the front cover which worked great in the context. I then contributed some additional graphical ideas to the cover and took care of the booklet and layout. And in the end there was this really fitting, great artwork. 

LoF - You returned to the stage in 2013 after seven years of absence, how did it feel returning, which other bands were on the bill and how were the gig(s)?

Infestus - Well, I returned to stage as a vocalist. That was something that I never did before and that really left a huge impression in my mind. Having the opportunity to be the voice of my own music and presenting it with all my flesh and soul is overwhelming. On the other hand, it is quite a challenging task to organize all those issues concerning the live musicians not least because they are spread over three countries… . This makes rehearsals nearly impossible (one or two before a gig at the most).

LoF - Have you any plans for touring with this album, and if so can we look forward to a date in the UK, or even Ireland? Also, have you musicians in mind for tours and gigs?

Infestus - I am not sure yet whether to take the chance to do a tour or not. I want a live gig to stay something special and not degenerate into something generic because you do it every day. But I will decide when the time has come.  

LoF - How does it feel playing live with these other musicians, is it a nerve wrecking experience entrusting someone else with playing your music live?

Infestus - Difficult question. To some degree it is not that easy to accustom to that, especially in a setting in which rehearsals are that rare. The act of bringing my music to stage demands a lot of effort from me and the others. And I feel honored that despite huge distances I have musicians that take much effort upon themselves when I need them to do so. It is of course something totally different compared to a real band that frequently plays together. 

LoF - What do you think of the current growth within the metal community, and do you feel it is a good or bad thing for the genre?

Infestus - I cannot answer this question. I don’t feel as a part of this community. Actually, I never felt part of any community. 

LoF - Which bands would you cite as being influential on your both yourself and also Infestus’ sound?

Infestus - Another rather hard-to-answer question. I always try to create music without being influenced by other artists. But I think in the end, here and there, there is something shining through my compositions. My taste in music is broad, ranging through different genres. It is less the genre that makes me listen to a band, but much more a certain feeling that is provoked by the music. You better ask other people which similarities they hear in my music. In several reviews I repeatedly read that reviewers had the feeling that there is some mixed influence of Opeth, Shining and Katatonia. Well, that’s possible since I listen/listened to those bands, too.

LoF - Which bands have you enjoyed playing with live and which would you most like to tour with?

Infestus - I actually never really cared about who I play live with. Most of the time when being at a gig, I am not establishing contact with the other bands. Maybe because there are much more important things to do or I am simply not in the mood. 

LoF - Have you any long term plans for writing a new album?

Infestus - It is possible that there will be another album in a few years. Writing music has always been something very important for me. And although, right now I am in some kind of recreation period, trying to free my mind from the very demanding task of creating “The Reflecting Void”, I will most likely experience enough darkness to deal with in the future which I try to cope with by using my creative valve. 

LoF - Thank you very, very much for taking the time to answer these questions, it’s greatly appreciated and I look forward to hearing a lot more from Infestus in the future.
Infestus - Thanks for your interest.

The Reflecting Void was released by Debemur Morti, and can be purchased here.

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