| Please introduce yourself and the band.|
Hi, I’m Arcanus Incubus (Ark) , I have been into extreme musical scene since 1995, and up until now (2015) I published about 22 albums, with different bands and projects.
天照大御神 is my last release, an ambitious project in which I have involved many valid unconscious musicians, so creating a specific band to such an aim : Die Dref Recumry, G/Ab (from Deviate Damaen), Ste Naked, Marco Zambruni (from Brainwash), Jeko (from PSI), Federico D'Ercole, Emiliano Bazzoni, Ilario Curiale, Priscilla Panzeri, Orazio Attanasio, Igor Carravetta, Kriss Stefano Guasconi and Davide Caragnano.
None of them could even image what they were going to do.
You are also involved in some other bands, how do these differ from each other?
During all these years I dedicated my whole life to music, and I vented my need of expression in different bands, some of theme no longer exist, others are still active, with or without me.
Hanormale, Deviate Damaen, Mystical Fullmoon, Labyrinthus Noctis, EXM93, Lasso Esiziale, In-coerenzA, PSI… All these projects are part of me and contains traces of my existence.
What does Hanormale stand for and what would be the concept behind the band?
The word 'Hanormale' does not mean anything, is a new term coined to be interpreted by anyone as s/he prefers. For a question of similarity it can remember the word 'abnormal', actually approaching the concept of the project. An unconventional, different entity . Not necessarily musical, but definitely emotional.
What made you start it and what would be the initial idea behind it? Has this changed over time?
The idea came to me in 2009, it was all very natural and necessary. I never studied what to do, I just did it. At first I divided myself in four different entities, and I gave each of them a task. The four entities took a demonic appearance and their own life. They have composed and performed the songs of 'Oni Monogatari'.
After this chapter, the four entities merged again in one body and in one mind. It was time to observe and control the random events. With the new chapter I did not do nothing but order the randomness and make sense of the random circumstances.
The title of your latest release would be 天照大御神. Could you translate the name and elaborate a bit on its meaning?
天照大御神 means Amaterasu Omikami, the goddess of the sun and the universe in the shinto religion.
I was really perplexed by the choice of a title for this album, it was inspired by G/ab, who decided to mention Amaterasu in his monologue that appears in the album. For me it was the right inspiration
How does the cover artwork play into this? What can found on it?
The cover depicts different symbols intersected with each other, all these symbols represent the sun, therefore Amaterasu herself. All other images in digipack are paintings and installations of Mauro Mantovani (Industrial Art), bass player of the band Brainwash.
When I asked him if he wanted to make the digipack precious with some of his work, he sent me some shots of his creations he considered suitable to the mood of the album. I decided to use them all, and I've twisted together with the cover, in order to have a unique storyline .... just like I did with the various musical instruments that appear on 天照大御神 .
Why such a long monolithic track? Can you present some insights on why you wrapped all elements together?
I think it could not be otherwise and should go exactly in that way. All the musicians involved in the project have played for 40 minutes consecutively, improvising. I did not want to miss even a moment of the vitality and emphasis of their execution, so I decided to keep it all, and mix it together in the most harmonious possible way.
How did you approach this project? What had been the starting point and how did you progress from there? Has it been a steady and continuous process or has the music evolved over time and therefore maybe even changed its contours?
Like all projects, 天照大御神 comes from an idea. I was taking a shower and I was thinking about extreme music release in recent times, and how the products have become increaslingly fake and sounds more and more like plastic. where is the coherence? if a drummer needs to play loud and fast, then the must is to work hard, you must feel his effort ... and the more he (or she) plays, the more he will have to suffer.
Nowadays it seems to be enough to record 4 beats only and then the trick is copy/paste copy/paste copy/paste. So, I said to myself, I want to make a record where it’s possible to perceive the effort and the heart of the musicians. Of course the starting point should have been drums!
Marco immediately agreed with enthusiasm when he heard of the experiment, and he played for 40 minutes without stopping a raging traditional blast, with only the metronome at 170 bpm through headphones. He was the first and his was certainly the most brutal test. Continuing with the recording, musicians had other elements in the headphones, on which find support, although always improvising. Everyone has been affected by other before them, therefore the effort and stress of Marco have been the roots of this work.
The mix has followed this trend, always adapting to the inclusion of new elements. In the final part I played and recorded the guitars, using a guitar with only two strings, and some ethnic percussion. At last I added the vocals of G/ab and Die Dref Recumry
When it comes to the vocals, then how would you describe their role in this track? Somehow they come over as left alone among the sounds and noises and arrangements. Would the music also work without them?
The vocals are fundamental, like everything else. 天照大御神 has its highest expression in its entirety. The voices of Die Dref Recumry sound like an instrument, and the acting of G/ab encloses the meaning of the album itself.
What kind of instruments were used in the process of making it?
Drums (composed only of kick, snare and cymbals), industrial percussions (a set consisting of bins, pipes, metal and plastic objects, different types of wood etc), electric bass, piano, sax, flute, viola, violin (with only three strings, because one has broken before recording), didgeredoo, djambe, tambourine, rain stick and electric guitar (a particular guitar with only two strings, that I call 'BI-TAR').
Why did you use the contrast between intense metal driven parts and calm ones? Is there a deeper meaning behind this juxtaposition?
I have not decided anything in advance, I’ve just gone along the mood created by the musicians during their improvisation. The alternation of violent and reflective moments is absolutely natural, is part of the subconscious of each of us, put on record and locked forever in space. An introspective painting of light and dark.
Why did you avoid complete silence for this music? Why is there a need to have some kind of sound?
This album sounds as loud as the silence.
Are the lyrics printed in the booklet? In what language do they appear?
In the booklet there are no lyrics, you know, the whole concept is about an unconventional language. Die Dref Recumry claims to have learned it in the realm of death. The meaning of the lyrics is not important, as I said the voice is an instrument too in this album. Its message is in the sinuous shape of its frequencies.
Is there something you would like the listener to experience and take with him or her by listening to this latest album of yours?
Well, there is no a single meaning in this journey. The listener will be guided by his emotional background and everyone will find something different hidden in 天照大御神.
You may like it or not, but it 's definitely a new experience no one has ever tried.
How does this latest album differ from your debut? What has changed since then?
The two release are completely different, if not opposed. When I started the project Hanormale, I just wanted to create a personal vision, according to my tastes and without the influence of anyone. Yet the personal reasons that led me to start the project have therefore vanished in a vacuum after a few years, until I got the inspiration for this latest work. What links the two albums is definitely the Eastern matrix, although, to be honest, in two very different ways. Rough, evil, violent and terrible in 'Oni Monogatari', and delicate, poetic, dreamy and velvety in 天照大御神.
How can someone get in touch with you and where can someone find your music?
If anyone is interested in learning more can contact me at email: email@example.com
To order 天照大御神, please contact the site Dusktone label (http://www.dusktone.eu) where you can also listen to the whole album in streaming
What would be the future plans for Hanormale?
I do not know nothing about the future. I signed a deal with dusktone for 2 albums, therefore sooner or later a successor of 天照大御神 will land into the world of concrete. There are always so many ideas, but they have fun to tangle constantly, making my brain bleed.
Closing comments if you like
I really want to thank you for your interest in the project 'Hanormale' and for the interview.
Just to conclude, here’s a message for everyone: music is a passion, not a business. It will know how to pay you back or to kill you.