KHTHONIIK CERVIIKS, a monstrous occult band from Germany, which most poked horns up on his "Scars SeroLogiikal (Vertex of Dementiy)" debut last year. Eerie Death / Black Metal of deep stroke continues to hold Metal honor of the German scene. Not following the traditional German band 80s and 90s, but their music combines a high level of composition, achievement of chthonic atmosphere and perfect stylization Death and Black Metal. It all rotates in a bottomless spiral of death, chaos is wandering in dungeons and blood of the innocent is boiling in copper cauldrons. It's superb when a great band release an outstanding opus and interesting interview is born, just like this. Questions were answered by Okkhulus Siirs (bass, vox).
Hell-o, what is your current view at your almost a year old album? Can you see there any flaws you would not to do today, or you think the album is completely tightened and it was the best you could do at that time?
Okkhulus Siirs: The album has definitely become what we wanted it to be at the time we recorded it. Maybe from today’s perspective the mix would be slightly different but I guess that’s normal because we have played the songs quite often during this one year and played around with EQ-settings at rehearsal and on stage.
If I look at "SeroLogiikal Scars (Vertex of Dementiy)" quite deep, it comes to me that you are not typical superficial metal band only releasing albums as on a treadmill to appease the taste of their fans, to earn a few money and to travel any tour. I find your work much deeper, more complex, as if you do not care what anybody thinks about your music and vision...
Okkhulus Siirs: I take this as a compliment. We do not create music in order to gain profits - so yes, we are free to say we do not care what others think of it. It’s good when people can see this as a positive trait in times when music is consumed like TV series.
To be honest, your CD completely fascinated me in many ways. For it is only a debut, it contains great compositional feeling, a strong talent and playing art that I compared you to very early Morbid Angel in the review. Your music has even greater depth as for atmospheric and spiritual side, exceeding all the Musical you've created, but together it makes that which should include real art. Do you see it alike?
Okkhulus Siirs: Thanks for the positive feedback! But it is not about a Morbid Angel comparison, is it? You can’t do that, haha. I think you mean you dig the older schooled & slightly technical death metal parts and them being combined with atmospheric ‘black metal vibes’. We love that as well. Real art? Art is always real, isn’t it? As an artist you should seek for your way to express what you think must be expressed. Beholders often feel invited to qualify works of art but I don’t think that such a concept is of any use at all.
It is exceptional that you have recorded "SeroLogiikal Scars (Vertex of Dementiy)" as a trio with the basic Metal instruments as bass guitar, drums, guitar, and thus you have created mad work. Other bands are trying to include non-traditional instruments, adding symphonic level, using different, often also forgotten, languages in lyrics and finally there will arise only farce or ordinary recording which will be then forgotten. How do you approach to the writing process?
Okkhulus Siirs: I think we are simply raised on the traditional three-piece side. Personally, I’d prefer Venom, Warfare, Amebix, Raven, Hellhammer etc. to any overly bombastic and meticulously fractured symphonic-something. None of us plays an ancient non-traditional instrument and it would be a farce to learn one with the intention to present oneselves as a unique band. It is quite the same about the language. We are interested in languages but I have the feeling that including ancient tongues and spells to the lyrics would – in my case – lead to historicism and occultist platitudes. An imaging approach to art would be the consequence. We want to make use of the language of the individual that is now to create an art that is now. Regarding the writing process: We meet once a week for 2-3 hours and bring riffs and rhythms to show to the others and then we play and recombine them. We write lyrics at home and arrange them to the song structures just before recording.
What responses have you got to "Scars SeroLogiikal (Vertex of Dementiy)"? Do you feel that some of the reviewers did not understand your music?
Okkhulus Siirs: Shortly after the release I have read a hand full of reviews and I was positively surprised. Honestly, I do not know whether positive or negative reviews make the majority today, since I’m not interested in google-searching my own band. It feels strange to me, I cannot explain. Everybody has to decide on their own whether they understand something or not, I cannot speak for the reviewers. We are proud to be invited to concerts all across Europe and we’ll play in the USA next summer, which is a side effect of the response to the album, of course. Maybe that’s the most honouring response that can be.
Your previous "Heptaedrone" recording was actually a demo tape released only in 300 pieces. The demo yet reaches a length of conventional full-length album. Don't you think it is a shame this material is apparently sold out? Don't you plan to reissue this demo on CD or LP in the future?
Okkhulus Siirs: “Heptaëdrone” was 500 tapes and 500 LPs. On the one hand that’s enough for a demo, on the other hand people kept asking for a CD version since it was first released. We’ll see. In the beginning we were totally against a demo released on CD but meanwhile we are wondering whether we should satisfy those expecting a CD version and put some bonus tracks on it. We have talked about this option but have no specific plans as to when this could happen. Maybe it won’t.
How would you compare your last two recordings? Where do you see the main difference between them?
Okkhulus Siirs: Sound and production. Both records feature almost the same rehearsal room equipment, however “Heptaëdrone” has this raw demo acoustics to it and is not mastered at all whereas “SeroLogiikal Scars” sounds more like we do when rehearsing plus a cleaned up EQ spectrum. Furthermore, in terms of lyrics “SeroLogiikal Scars” is following a certain guiding thread because the idea for the title is older than most songs are. We tried to have the lyrics fit in to that overall idea and atmosphere, however, I would not consider it a concept album though. I have said that in an earlier interview: To me the album is more like a collection of short stories that are intertwined. For our demo everything came into existence in a more spontaneous fashion.
Your members come from two bands that are already broken down, Ignis Uranium was Black Metal act with "Azimuth Nuctemeron Frequency" album and Zuul, Death Metal band with three demos. Why these two bands have split up? And how it happened that Khthoniik Cerviiks have raised?
Okkhulus Siirs: We have been knowing each other for a while and it was a coincident that both bands, which also rehearsed next door, broke apart due to personal reasons within a couple of weeks. Of each band one member just decided he was done with it and needed to reset priorities. Ohourobohortiik Ssphäross asked Khraâl Vri*il to come over and jam with us since we were without a guitar player after the split-up of Zuul. After two or three rehearsal sessions ‘Elektriik Redeemer’ was finished. More songs followed quite soon and we decided to record a rehearsal tape. After a short while we rerecorded the songs plus some more in a friend’s studio. “Heptaëdrone” was born.
Your debut was released through Necroshrine Records / Iron Bonehead label, which still not released so many recordings, but the better bands they have. How did you get to this label? Do you think your next stuff will be released under this label?
Okkhulus Siirs: We have shown some songs of the “Heptaëdrone” recording session to a friend who has shown them to Iron Bonehead consequently. We got in contact with IPB and planned the release of the demo together. It was crystal clear to us then that the album would be a Necroshrine/Bonehead release as well and we are glad Iron Bonehead was of the same opinion. Yes, we do think the collaboration must continue.
Where do you find inspiration for your music, lyrics and visions in general? May it be the dreams, hallucinations, or experiences with the magic? And what about musical inspiration? Are you dedicated to the old school of Metal, or even other non-metal influences? Which albums are the key to you?
Okkhulus Siirs: Hard to say about the inspiration. World 3.0 and the wireless extension and outsourcing of souls, the degeneration of mankind, their blindness caused by endless sight, their baseless willingness… Key albums… I don’t know, but the first metal albums I have listened to in endless rotation aged 12 were “Kill ‘Em All”, “Scream Bloody Gore” and an Iron Maiden Best Of. I think those are key albums to me. Right now directly next to me is a pile of recently played LPs including: Grave Miasma, Drowned, Katharsis, Tiamat, Scorpions, Vardis, Riot, Demon, Skelethal, Manfred Mann, Neil Young, Howls Of Ebb and UFO (“UFO2: Flying” – Ughhh!!). Uriah Heep’s “The Magician’s Birthday” is an alltime favourite of mine as well as Repugnant’s “Epitome of Darkness”. Oh, and go listen to StarGazer!
Ok, that would be all from me, hope I did not forget anything essential. Wish Khthoniik Cerviiks the deepest fall into the abyss of darkness and horror where you can gather a handful of ideas and creativity, have a good time!
Okkhulus Siirs: Thanks for the interview, take care. The deepest abysses of darkness and horror seem quite exhausted as sources of inspiration recently. Any new band to prove me wrong is welcome. We’d rather start the think-tank’s engine and go astray in twisted mind-games. Everyday life.
Okkhulus Siirs 14.11.2016 Mortuary