Eclipse Eternal's Voldamare's Dark Experience

Black metal act Eclipse Eternal have been hard at work writing and recording for their next full-length album. Frontman Voldamares gives me the rundown of the band's past, present, and future plans for this darkened path these guys have chosen.

1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

Voldamares: Founded in the Fall of 1999 by Voldamares for the express purpose of turning thought and philosophy to sound, Canada’s Eclipse Eternal made their entrance into the underground Black Metal scene via a live-off-the-floor rendition of their song“The King”, which was released on a compilation by Bloodbucket Productions in 2002. Inspired by the violent atmospheres created bands such as Mayhem, Satyricon, and Immortal, the band’s early music was filled with chaos and raw aggression. Within a year, the band began work on their first full-length CD, Reign of the Unholy Blackened Empire. The album would take two years to create and be over an hour of Epic Symphonic Black Metal. It was recorded/mixed at Eclipse Studios by Glen Drover (King Diamond, Megadeth) and mastered by Andy Laroque (King Diamond). Released by Galy Records in 2004, the album received positive reviews around the globe.

While the band’s reputation gained momentum through multiple live performances (including their debut performance at the Northern Lights Festival, and opening for multiple international bands such as Dimmu Borgir and Behemoth), Eclipse Eternal focused their creative energies upon writing their most highly regarded album to date, Übermensch: Evolution Beyond The Species. Mixed at Studio Fredman by Fredrik Nordström (Dimmu Borgir, Zyclon, Old Man’s Child) the album displayed a marked escalation in overall complexity, atmosphere and viciousness. Upon release, the album received rave reviews by both the press and their ever-growing fanbase. To promote this release, Eclipse Eternal would then spend four years performing their live rituals alongside such well-respected bands as Mayhem, Satyricon, Immortal, Watain, Chthonic, Dark Funeral, Averse Sefira, Absu, Enslaved, and many more.

For its first non-live official video, the band teamed up with Dark Frames Pictures to create a rich, HD video for the nightmarish, seven-minute epic, “The Dragon Has Come to Blot Out the Stars.” Shot both on location and in studio, and featuring prosthetic make-up, numerous extras, buckets of blood, three band members being burned at the stake, it was an enormous undertaking garnering thousands of views online. During this four-year period following Übermensch, a thought gestated. It grew and evolved. The thought became sound and a new album was born.

In late 2011, Eclipse Eternal signed with Archaic North Records, who released the band’s third full-length album in January 2012: The Essence of Hopelessness. Recorded once again at Glen Drover’s Eclipse Studios, Eclipse Eternal has mixed the vicious, harsh nature of their previous album with an emotional intensity that is rarely seen in current Black Metal. They have delved into their innermost suffering and wrenched forth an album that is both poignant and memorable. From cold atmospheres to absolute chaos, from acoustic and spoken word interludes to ripping shredding, this album is as brutal as it is stirring. With lyrics swinging from Odes to ancient Pagan times to suicide to murder most foul, Eclipse Eternal holds back nothing on this third full-length album.

Following the release and promotion of The Essence of Hopelessness, Eclipse Eternal began writing again for their next record. And, with Ax Media Studios, filmed a new video for the disturbed “Murder…Suicide.”Additionally, the band contributed a cover of “Crossing the 45thParallel” (Woods of Yypres) for the David Gold/Woods of Yypres tribute album, Heart of Gold, as well as performing the song at the memorial concert.

Joining Romania’s Negură Bunget for their first North American tour in spring of 2012, Eclipse Eternal played twenty-eight shows throughout much of Canada and the USA, expanding their fanbase as well as broadening themselves as live performers. With the experience of the Transylvanian Legacy Tour 2012 in mind, Eclipse Eternal are focusing on assembling a 2013 European tour, and are continuing to write for their fourth album.

2. How did you guys come up with your band name?

Voldamares: Eclipses are times of great change. This world is in need of great change. Permanent change. This simple concept gave birth to the name.

3. How would you define your style and sound of metal, and why should a metal fan listen to your work?

Voldamares: We are a black metal band. Beyond that we do not try to define or limit our sound. It is constantly evolving. New elements are constantly being added and old ones removed. If a metal fan chooses to listen to us it is because of this ebb and flow of ideas and influences that makes us unique in black metal.

4. Your signed by the label "Archaic North Entertainment" how has the relationship with this label been going for you guys?

Voldamares: Archaic North is an excellent label. They set up our recent North American tour with Negura Bunget. They are small but dedicated.

5. Where are you in the process of the new album?

Voldamares: We have 5 songs currently in the works right now. We're considering doing an E.P. this time so we may end up recording sooner than previously expected. We're intent on spending more time in the studio this time than ever before and really trying to expand the depth of each song.

6. When did you start writing for this album?

Voldamares: We started writing in the Fall of 2012.  We always take our time when writing.

7. When can we expect the new album to be released?

Voldamares: We will see. We have no deadline. When the album is exactly what we want it to be then it will be released. We will post updates on our Facebook page as we get closer.

8. What lyrical theme do you guys use in your music? What message do you want to send?

Voldamares: I write of death. The death of oneself and of others. I write of war and destruction, of murder and suicide. I write the truths I see as i lift the veil from life's bloated corpse.

9. How do you guys feel about the classifications in metal? like deathcore, metalcore and other subgenres and how some get a negative rep.

Voldamares: These kinds of classifications are for marketing people and people who need structure.  If I like something then it matters not what style of metal it is or who else likes or dislikes it.

10. What is your opinion on the current state of metal?

Voldamares: Metal is a very small general here in North America and I don't see it growing at all. Elsewhere it seems to be doing quite well. Could always be better though.

11. What made you guys decide to form a band?

Voldamares: I decided to start the band because I found the chaos in my head was best expressed through this form and style of music.

12. How many band t-shirts, hoodies, tank tops, hats, are in your personal collection?

Voldamares: Beyond count. Honestly I have a hundred plus. I am a collector.

13. What is your favorite style of headbanging to use whether it'd be performing live or in the comfort of your own home listening to music.

Voldamares: Styles of headbanging? I didn't know there were different styles. The music plays and I just let it move me.

14. What's the metal scene like in Canada, do you have any band recommendations worth checking out?

Voldamares: Our scene is small and scattered but dedicated  For bands I would suggest: Wolven Ancestry, Empyrean Plague, Pagan Ritual, Woods Of Ypres, Monarque, Forteresse, Sombre Foret, Gris, Vanquished, Cryptik Howling, Erimha, Black Empire and Dark Forest.

15. How is 2013 looking for Eclipse Eternal, what do you have lined up for this year?

Voldamares: We are looking forward to writing our new opus and performing it to as many people as we can.

16. Where can we go if we wanted to listen to or purchase your work?

Voldamares: To listen to our music you can go to our MySpace page, our Facebook page or you can look for us on YouTube.

17. Why should a metalhead buy your demos/albums?

Voldamares: If a metalhead wants to hear more music from us they need to buy our albums/merch so we can afford to record more music. Nothing is free, not recording, mixing or mastering. All money we make goes back into our music. We are 100% self financed.

18. Anything else you'd like to say or add?

Voldamares: Hail to those of you who walk this darkened path with us. You honor us with your presence.

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