Darkane - Slayers of Lies

By Thrash-head

Somewhere, someone has to be working on a comprehensive metal encyclopedia. Right next to the term thrash metal, there really ought to be a picture of Darkane. In the new millenium, even as older mainstays of the thrash scene dust off their high-tops and are reuniting for the sake of demand for new material, Darkane is truly the epitome - fuck it, the PERSONIFICATION of thrash metal! They are true professionals in every sense, crafting brilliant technical displays that are as fast as they are heavy, as melodic as they are extreme, and as unbelievably unrelenting as it gets.

The new album is called "Layers of Lies." It is seriously a non-stop thrash onslaught from start to finish. As only the Europeans can do it, it is super fast and incredibly heavy without sacrificing the hooks, and if you can find better thrash metal musicians out there than these five, I seriously want to know who they are. I mean, Peter Wildoer alone - fresh out of a rigorous physical therapy regimen for a shatterred wrist - churns out one of the best extreme metal drumming displays in history. His fills are so colorful and intricate, so tastefully layered with toms and every splash cymbal within reach, that you can't help but go "WOW!!!" every 4 measures or so. The rest of the band also turns in fantastic performances, including vocalist Andreas Sydow, who is finally starting to listen to a lot more of the extreme metal genres that he is now part of.

I talked to Gibson Explorer-wielding guitarist Klas Ideberg over the e-mail.

Wormwood Chronicles: Your new CD is fucking brilliant!!! What did you do differently this time?

Klas Ideberg: We took our time with it and produced it ourselves!

Wormwood Chronicles: One thing that I look for in my metal is great drumming, and yet despite being injured and doing physical therapy to get back to this point, I think that Peter has turned in his strongest drumming effort ever on this disc. What exactly did he and the band go through?

KI: We went through a lot of stuff. First, I had a lot of problems with my back. I had a split disc that needed surgery, so I was handicapped for almost 4 months. And when my problems were solved, Peter Wildoer got serious problems with his wrists and needed to rest for 6 months before even touching his drums. Damn, he couldn't even do the dishes apparently, hahaha.

So, because of all this, the writing process for Layers Of Lies was delayed. But, we finished it in the end and it turned out great.

Wormwood Chronicles: One of the things I especially love about Darkane's music is that while it seems to come from this larger, European modern thrash movement (from the Swedish movement in particular), you still have retained an original sound that is easily identifiable as your own. It's as if you guys genuinely try to be faster and more technical than everyone else. Is this the case?

KI: No, not really. But we do try to change sound a little bit for each album. If we wouldn't have done that, it would have been dull. We did want the album to be a little bit faster and more aggressive though, so you're right in that observation. We wanted to achieve that with a more "right in your face" sound, and I think we accomplished that. Maybe it was our frustration from our physical problems, hahaha.

Wormwood Chronicles: Another thing I love about Darkane is the live show. I remember seeing you guys at Milwaukee Metalfest about 6 years ago right after "Insanity" came out and you guys just hit the stage running and impressed the hell outta me to the point where you converted me to a serious fan on the spot. What's the mindset when you guys go out onstage? Is it that you see yourselves as seasoned musicians who take what you do very seriously, or do you just go onstage to have a good time and feed off the crowd energy?

KI: When we go on stage we want to put on a great show and not just stand there and look boring. If we play a few notes wrong, who gives a shit? We take the live performance really serious. And if the crowd response is good, we feed off their energy. If the crowd is great, we're great.And even if the crowd is lame, we do a good job and put on a good show. There are always a couple of real die-hard fans and we want to give them a great live experience. They paid money to see us, so we want to make them happy. It's all about respect and appreciation, really.

Wormwood Chronicles: How would you say your sound or your approach has changed after 4 albums? Is this where you envisioned you would be at this stage of Darkane's history?

KI: Uh, I don't know really the answer to this. We don't think that much about what to do and such, we just want to do our best every time. We take it day by day sort of. No heavy thoughts about that.

Wormwood Chronicles: If I can make an observation, although I really loved "Expanding Senses", it seemed as though you guys held back a bit on it. It certainly sounds a bit easier to digest than your other three albums. Was this a conscious make an album that was a bit easier to get into and yet still make it sound like Darkane?

KI: I think we discussed that before we did the songs because Insanity is a reallycomplex album and it is hard to grasp and we wanted to make a more heavy album at that time. But I don't think Rusted Angel or Layers Of Lies are hard to get into, but perhaps they are, since welive with the songs all the time and don't think they are hard or anything.

Wormwood Chronicles: That's also the only album where there wasn't a classical-style intro. What was the reason for that?

KI: Well, the main reason was lack of time, but yeah, we all decided that we wanted Expanding Senses to open up straight with a punch in the face.

Wormwood Chronicles: Is it true that Andreas never even listened to extreme metal before joining Darkane? What's that story?

KI: Yeah, that's true. Of course he had heard Slayer for example, but he was never into it. He grew up with more traditional metal like Iron Maiden, Kiss, Whitesnake, etc. When we asked him to join the band, he started listening to faster and heavier stuff.

Wormwood Chronicles: What's the current state of affairs in Darkane? Time off for side projects? Writing for the new album? Preparing a tour?

KI: In two weeks we will embark on our European tour, together with old-time thrashers Sadus. That will be a fun
one for sure! Concerning side projects, I've been working with my other band, Defaced, finishing up the forthcoming album. I'm mixing it right now, actually. Peter has been busy doing drums for 2 different projects that I don't know the names of though. And yeah, We have written a little bit of music for the forthcoming Darkane album as well, so we've been keeping busy.

Wormwood Chronicles: Speaking of all the side projects, why are there so many? I mean, Klas, you especially seem to have a lot of time on your hands!

KI: Well, I actually only have 1 side project, Terror 2000. Defaced is not a project but a full-time band which I take very seriously along with Darkane. Christofer's Non Human Level is a solo project he's been working on for the past 7 years or something. Did you know he met his drummer for the first time in Vancouver when we toured the States last year?

Wormwood Chronicles: Okay, that's all the questions I got. Any last words for your fans in the U.S.?

KI: It was great meeting our fans on our tour last year and hope to see you allsoon again. We really want to come back soon and thrash the U.S. again. It would have been a pleasure for us. See you!

Metal is Life!!!

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