04-03 2013 – By Wouter
It’s been five years between the recording of the drums and releasing the album “It’s Your Fear That Feeds Their Power”. Finally, on 12-12 ’12 Enraged released their first full-length. Self released but with impressive guest artists like James Murphy (Testament, Death, Obituary), Andy Larocque (King Diamond, Death, At The Gates) and Christofer Malmström (Darkane). The CD is very promising and thus the band is an asset for the Dutch metal scene. Time to interview the former member and drummer Douwe Talma. Read the review of “It’s Your Fear That Feeds Their Power” here.
Metal-Exposure (ME): What is it like to release the album after this amount of time?
Douwe Talma (DT): It’s surreal. I’ve been working on this album for five years. And at times I was uncertain if this was going to work, because of the setbacks like line-up changes. The weirdest thing was when I held the artwork in my hands for the first time. The booklets were send to the press and I thought to myself: “could it finally be true?” It was surreal.
ME: Did some aspects of the songs change in those years?
DT: No, not really. Songs were improved rather than changed. We had written those songs namely years ago and I had an idea how it should sound like. Plus we also played those songs live back then. So we wanted a certain sound and with the special guest appearances it became even better. Partially also because Jochem Jacobs (Textures) is a great producer, so the sound is awesome. But Jens van der Valk (ex-God Dethroned) for example did most of the solos. I said I wanted a lead here and told him just to try something out. But what he did exceeded my expectations. It was better than I was hoping for. All these loose parts were like a puzzle and I had to keep an overview of the puzzle to make sure it all fits. Eventually all these pieces turned out much better, so eventually the entire album sounded much better.
ME: Was it difficult to record all these pieces part by part?
DT: Not to me, because I knew how I wanted it. We’ve been working on the guitars for the longest time. Tjaard Walstra recorded the guitar tracks one by one and send it to me by mail. He added some things himself but in general the songs were well written. Also, the guest artists enjoyed being a part of this. I told them what the main idea was and that if they wanted to improve things here and there, they should. Everyone did their very best to make it work and that surprised in a good way.
ME: Was everything recorded in different studios because everyone could do it their own way?
DT: That was actually because of practical reasons. Most of the persons have things besides the music like jobs and family. Therefore it made more sense to record things in their own studio. The vocals for example, we recorded at Danny Boonstra’s (Disintegrate) place because he only had time in the weekends and Jitse Schregardus, the vocalist, as well. So he couldn’t record it at Tjaard Walstra’s place for instance. Plus, Danny is a vocalist himself so he could give tips instead of engineering the whole time and that’s also why he does some guest vocals as well.
ME: There are some special guest appearances from like James Murphy (Testament, Obituary, Death), Andy Larocque (King Diamond, Death, At The Gates) and Christofer Malmström (Darkane) on the album. How did you manage to make that happen?
DT: I made a list of my all time favorite guitarists and just went through the list, searching for their mail addresses. Sometimes other people helped me to get their mail address and then I just send an e-mail to ask them to please do a solo here in this song. The persons, who wanted to do this and had the time, helped us. Afterwards, Jens van der Valk did all the other solos to complete the songs.
ME: So where did they record their solos?
DT: They all have their own studios so they did that at their homes. Then they send me the files asking me if it was what I had in mind. Eventually after sending some files back and forth we had the solos that fitted the songs best and Jochem Jacobs added this to the rest of the mix.
ME: Can you explain something about the main theme of the album?
DT: The songs were finished years ago and I wrote the lyrics. The album was actually called “Respice Finem”, which is now just the instrumental song on the album because I thought it sounded less powerful than “It’s Your Fear That Feeds Their Power”. Which comes from the song “Global Conspiracy / Invisible Oppressors” on the CD. After reading some books about this subject I found it very interesting. It’s actually about manipulation. Telling people lies on a certain tone so that they feel threatened. And threatening and fear makes you feel small and powerless and that’s not a good thing. Just look at all the newspapers, it’s all about creating fear and manipulating. I’m trying to say with these lyrics to think for yourself and not to believe everything you read.
ME: I agree!
DT: That’s great! I think a lot of people are not aware of this. But in general, metal is known for people who can think for themselves. There are many metal bands, like Napalm Death, who think self-consciousness is very important. We as Enraged always have had aggressive lyrics. Just like these, but they are also more to a globally level compared to earlier releases.
ME: Have you been on tour since the album release and the new line up?
DT: No, not yet. At this point I’m busy to promote the new record and since it’s self-released, it’s quite a lot of work. At one point you miss the promotion a record deal offers. On the other hand you control everything. We had a deal in the past, but I think it’s fair that the money should go directly to the person who invested in the band. And that’s me. But it’s difficult to do it yourself nowadays because you can sell music at Spotify, Amazon and I-tunes, which I did. But I’m still looking for a physical distribution deal to sell the CD internationally. So we’ve received positive reactions and in time we will see if we’re going to do live shows. I know that Jitse Schregardus and Tjaard Walstra both want to do live shows, but we will do this step by step. If the CD would flop for instance, I would question myself if I really want to spend more time and energy to get this going. So for now, nothing is certain.
ME: If you’re going to release new material, will you release it sooner than between the last releases?
DT: Haha! If it’s up to me, most certainly! Another long winded project would be very hard. To me this is more like a life’s work and it cost a lot of energy. So I don’t want to do it like this anymore. A funny example is with my other death/thrash band “Insurrection”. We just finished my drum recordings and we said that this shouldn’t take five more years! So right now I’m working in a manner to avoid this problem. I don’t want to do it again.
ME: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
DT: Yes, please check the teaser below of “Confusion” from “It’s Your Fear That Feeds Their Power”. Also check our Facebook page, because that one is most up to date. The CD is definitely worth to check out for anyone into quality melodic death metal and please buy it if you like it!