Interview: Dreamslain

(Featured image by Dominic Matteucci)

Today, we present to you an interview with Dreamslain from Northern Norway – a band who describes its style as “a mix of epic metal, progressive rock and extreme metal“. Enjoy reading – and check out their stuff.

Hi, how are you doing?

It’s late April and it’s snowing. So you can imagine how we’re doing. At least we can rehearse, which is what we’ll do after this interview.

What was the last record you listened to before answering our questions?

  • Anna – Monuments by Vintage Caravan
  • Daniel – the latest (untitled) Rammstein album
  • Igor – Nightmares From The Abyss by Sirens Rain

Let’s talk about your band: Did this damn pandemic destroy a lot of your plans with Dreamslain?

We had to cancel a show in Bergen (twice) and we also couldn’t book anything on the European mainland, which we really had hoped to do to support our album release. We’re still hoping to play Switzerland, Germany, and Great Britain, but that’s likely not happening before 2022. We’re also looking at more local shows, either in smaller cities in Northern Norway, or in Northern Sweden in late 2021.

Is there a special meaning behind the name of your band?

The name is inspired by the Norwegian band Enslaved. It’s quite dark and was to represent a certain disappointment with the state of things. Ironically, our songs, while quite dark as well, are usually more uplifting and trying to create hope and dreams.

How would you define the style of your band? And which bands would you classify as your major influences?

Our music is a mix of epic metal, progressive rock and extreme metal. When it comes to influences, the band has a really wide range and it’s hard to pick out just one, or five bands that are major influences. Often it’s about how we think about writing songs or what sound we want on a given instrument or part, or even playing technique, rather than trying to replicate a band that inspires us. One example is Manilla Road, where we found a similarity in how to think about writing metal, but where our riffs don’t sound anything like Manilla Road.

In January you released your debut record Tales of Knights and Distant Worlds. How was the feedback so far?

We’ve gotten a wide range of feedback: either the reviewer liked it and found it interesting, or they hated it. The only thing everyone seems to agree on is that our music is weird. A German reviewer called it “Kauz-Metal”. It’s been really nice to see that people from many different countries are interested in our music and have bought our CDs. And it’s of course nice to see that people still buy physical albums, as we think that’s really important to keep the underground part of the genre alive. 

Who is responsible for the songwriting?

We write all songs together in the rehearsal room, mostly starting with jamming over a riff or melody, and then try to develop the idea and bring in new ideas until we have a finished song. Lyrics are based on a theme or topic we decide fits the song, and then most often our singer writes the lyrics.

Could you point out a favourite song? 

  • Daniel’s favourite is “The Fall Of The Elven Lord“ because of all the blast beat sections.
  • Anna’s favourite is “Cosmonautics“ because of the melodies and the spacy monosynth solo.
  • Igor’s favourite is “Tale Of The Copper Guard“ because of the epic story and that it’s a song where all three band members play solos.

Is there a vivid metal scene in Northern Norway?

The local metal scene is very shifting: one year a lot is happening, and then another year there’s almost nothing. There have been some attempts at building the scene by organising festivals and club events, however the scene is still very small. Then again, it’s a scarcely populated area with long distances and much “Schlager” music.

What’s your favourite festival? Where would you like to play with Dreamslain in the future?

We’ve been really impressed by Keep it True and Hammer of Doom in Germany, so playing there would be very cool. In Norway, it would be interesting for us to play the Close to the Rain festival, which is a prog festival that has some heavier acts as well. In general, small festivals, where everyone is there for the music and not just for the party, seem more suitable to our music.

What’s your favourite album released this year, so far?

  • Anna and Igor have been particularly fond of To Touch The Sky by Emerald Dawn
  • Daniel on the other hand hasn’t found a particular favourite for 2021, however, in 2020, Ihsahns Telemark was a high point.

Last question: What’s your favourite epic metal album of all time?

Again, here the band is divided:

  • For Anna it’s Manilla RoadSpiral Castle
  • For Daniel it’s Emperor In The Nightside Eclipse
  • For Igor it’s Manilla RoadAtlantis Rising

Many thanks for your time! Stay safe.

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