by Ryan Starr
For part two of the Pagan Fest intverview extravaganza we have Tır. Tır are probably the most "different" band on the bill, and I was really curious on how they create their sound, and what to expect from their upcoming album.
I understand you guys are recording a new album, so thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to do this.
First off, you guys are from the Faroe Islands. For those who don’t know, tell us where it is.
In the North Atlantic Ocean, midway between Norway, Scotland and Iceland, 18 Islands covering 1.400 sq kms. We are Scandinavians, closest related to the Icelandic and the Norwegian.
Since the Faroe Islands are so close to both Scandinavia and the UK, how is the local folk music and mythology affected by both cultures?
There is very little UK cultural impact on the Faeroes, we are all Scandinavian. There has been some Celtic influence from the time of the settlement, around 820 AD, which were by route of the British Isles. In recent times WWII is probably the biggest British influence on the Faeroese culture, a lot of loan words and some cultural relations are thanks to the British occupation of the Faeroes, which btw is the only welcome occupation I have ever heard of.
Your last album, Ragnarok, was very different from the rest of the viking/folk metal scene. What are your influences, and how do you mix it with your folk influences?
Sound wise influences are mostly old school heavy metal. No folk instruments or re-enactment outfits, like you see in a lot of viking/folk/pagan metal, and songwriting wise we have a classical theoretical compositional approach and build on Scandinavian traditional music. All this, sound and songwriting, sets us apart from the common viking metal scene, but at the same time does not make our image any less viking, maybe it even makes us more true viking than other bands. But believe it or not, that was never what we set out to do. As I have said in countless interviews, when we started we were completely oblivious of the fact that there was something called viking metal.
As I mentioned before, you are currently in the studio recording your latest album. How are things going?
The album was recorded in December. Everything is now in production in the hands of Napalm. From our perspective the album is already finished. Just waiting for the release.
What can we expect?
More traditional than ever before. The compositional approach is closer our first album, How Far to Asgaard
, released by Tutl, (www.tutl.com
). It is not as progressive as Ragnarok
, and maybe not as easily accessible at first listen as Eric The Red
, but it has very strong melodies, the best yet in my opinion, and it is as epic as Ragnarok
You’re about head out on the Pagan Fest tour, probably the biggest folk tour in a long time. Have you ever done a tour this extensive?
No, this will be the longest single tour we have been on yet.
Will this be your first time playing in North America?
Yes, can't wait.
What do you think about such a big folk metal tour coming to the US?
Fantastic. I hope it is well visited and that people like it.
Will your new album be for sale during Pagan Fest?
No, unfortunately not. This has something to do with sale strategics and charts etc. Company decision, sorry.
Lastly, how is Kári doing? What happened?
Just after the last little tour in January he had a spinal disc herniation, that comes from a long time of hard work. He has had surgery and is now in recovery.
When is he expected to return to the kit?
That is impossible to say at present, but we hope to have him back for the festivals this summer.
Thanks again for doing this. See you guys at the Denver show.
Official Tır Website
Official Napalm Website