Metal is coming from every corner in the world these days, and I mean that quite literally. It’s even coming from the corner of black metal composer Wight’s bedroom, or home studio, if that’s what you prefer to call it. There must be a lot of gold up there in that head of Wight, because he sure has a lot of material out there. Besides Satanic Dirge, Wight belongs to a plethora of other projects that are just waiting to be tapped into now that SD’s latest has been released. Here’s my latest conversation with Sir Wight himself.
So what's your main project? I know you belong to quite a few, including Rainwound Is satanic dirge a side project?
is my main project, indeed! I started it during (or maybe a little bit before) the summer of 2005 while I was exiting 11th grade and on the way to 12th grade... I thought I had that demo done a few times, but kept fixing it, and eventually just stopped and set the release date for that demo as November 13th, 2005. I'm not entirely sure on the date, but shortly before that I began the Satanic Dirge project as a side-project. The Rainwound stuff had a ton of acoustic passages and sounded very triumphant... I wanted to try black metal, though I hadn't really written any before and didn't know much about writing in that genre...
Do you have a link for that project?
Of course! The official website is http://www.rainwound.2ya.com/
and the myspace page, with a few full songs, is http://www.myspace.com/rainwound
Yeah, the songs of Rainwound have a much different approach than Satanic Dirge. Both of your projects are one man bands, correct?
Indeed! They both are... I had actually searched for other musicians in the area, and I found one guy - a keyboardist - who seemed like a decent candidate but that didn't even work out. Getting a full band together is tough stuff, and in an area as small and quiet as my little community, there is almost no hope... unless you're interested in punk. Though there were some decent bands in the area, like Sunstorm Downfall
(death metal) TerraNova
(prog/power), and Dahmer's Fridge
(noise/hardcore), they are all dead. You may be able to find their music on the internet but the bands are dead...
It's terrible that scenes are dying these days...Do you see yourself as one of the innovators in your area? Do you think your music will take part in bringing metal to the foreground in your scene?
Hahaha, of course Rainwound
is an innovator of the area... Some of the bands I listed above were very great but like I said: dead. I got the chance to see them live, and they were really unique, so it's pretty sad. I think Rainwound
may be the only existing metal band in the area... The area's stuffed with punk so it's really not difficult being an innovator here. To be completely honest, I don't know how many people in the area even know my bands exist so they really haven't made an impression on the scene. The town I live in is pretty empty with a lot of senior citizens and God-fearing people, so to bring Satanic Dirge
out into the open here would be hilarious but probably won't happen. Farther away (about 10 miles) is where the actual city of Burgettstown is, where all the punk bands are. It's really kind of a slummy and unkempt area, no offense if any locals happen to be reading this - it's not your fault, hehe. I'm sure there are some metalheads in Burgettstown, but I haven't been able to crack into that little community yet. I assume the Burgettstown metalhead community is like a small pack of wolves or a gang of some kind. Not sure on that, as I've never witness the group if there is one.... If I could get a full line-up and play some gigs, sure we would probably be pretty popular in the area... Especially since Burgettstown is host to Ozzfest at the Post Gazette Pavilion, which actually took place... err, well it just ended about an hour or 2 ago here...
Oh did you go?
I didn't go to Ozzfest this year, nope. I can almost guarantee I'd be in both the second and main stage pits if it weren't for the severely horrible line-up of artists this year. It's not worth it to pay $100+ just to see Strapping Young Lad
, Between The Buried And Me
, and Dragonforce
. Some guy got his arm ripped off last year, t'was cool.
Haha… yeah this year is really terrible... So describe Satanic Dirges new material to me
There's a lot to describe there, man. The first demo track, "Venom"
was very much just a stereotypical black metal song... It had the production of kvlt lo-fi black metal but sort of had a modern style to it. The second song, "Beware of God"
, had more of a symphonic side to it but the same kind of bad production and looking back, I think it sucks even though it was the most blasphemous lyrics I ever wrote... I guess people like it though, I announced I was dropping it from the promo and I got fans telling me to include it, so.... we'll see what happens. It got replaced by a sweet new track called [I"Weaklings"[/i] so it can't hold the same slot, it would have to be a hidden track at the end. Now "Weaklings"
is very Sigh
influenced, as well as a little Rainwound
influence in there. Odd to say I can actually be influenced by Rainwound
, eh? It's probably the weirdest track on the promo, of course, but still pretty damn grim. "Brainworkz"
is very heavy and has some nice dischords, it started the movement into the more modern and maybe symphonic black metal sound. "Stages of Rapture"
started with an acoustic introduction with a solo, the whole acoustic thing was influenced by Emperor
has this one acoustic opening track that is very ambient and has a great sound, I'm not sure if it's on Anthems or what do I'll just keep my mouth shut as far as that goes. The guitar part that follows, the whole finger-tapping thing, was actually written in the computer and then learned on guitar... I used another electronic interlude in the middle of the song, probably the end of the whole "techno sounds" thing. After that the songwriting kind of got more full and modern. "Epitaph"
starts out goth rock type stuff, breaks down into church organ and builds up to an Opeth
-influenced ending that also has somewhat of a power metal vibe and my favorite solo! Also the lyrics on that song are very personal, almost about my life really. "Aerial View"
is my crack at doom metal, very My Dying Bride
and Swallow The Sun
-influenced. It came out really great and I love it for it's crushing force and the acoustic folk-riff is great. The clean vocals (appearing for the second time on the demo) are nice too, a friend actually told me they made him cry. "Chaos"
was the 'big finish' for the demo, where I put all of my other ideas into one 16-minute behemoth. Too big to describe really, it has a ton of styles. There are also a couple new interludes, mostly just keyboards, that I added at the end.
Cool man! So again, do you think you could hit me up with a link to Satanic Dirge?
Of course! The official website is here
and the myspace is here
. The official site has the whole first demo on the audio page, but the myspace has a couple early promo tracks on it. I say early because they need to go through some more mixing, and the promo version of "Stages of Rapture"
that I posted is missing it's acoustic intro! Dumb mistake. Also need to record some better screams for the start of the heavy part..
So when you say you do everything, do you mean everything? For instance are the drums programmed, or did you record them. How about the vocals?
Yeah, sadly the drums do have to be programmed. They're a bit too large, expensive, and hard to microphone and they really hadn't caught my interest until recently but it's really far too late. I can't learn double bass'ing or blast beats fast, that takes several years of practice. I sat behind a kit at guitar center and it was like a newborn baby laying in a pile of needles. Just a bunch of flopping around without really getting anywhere with terrible body coordination. On the demo, all the songs from "Venom"
up to "Epitaph"
had programmed keys, then I actually bought a keyboard and "Aerial View"
got real keys! I guess I learned fast. I did learn all of the keyboards for the whole demo, so it'll all be good on the promo. "Torrent of Souls"
actually sounds a lot stronger and more amazing than the demo version. Yeah, sorry I forgot to mention it before but it's always been the track that slipped my mind, hehe.... It's all keyboards, very influenced by Sigh's
Nietzschean Conspiracy. That song is really amazing, so I guess I tried to make my own kind of keyboard song with growls on it. Like I said the promo version really sounds 100% better, and I never thought I'd be as happy with that song as I am... fell in love with it all over again I guess, hehe....About the vocals, yeah... I do them too. I didn't know how to scream or growl when I started on the demo, and it's been a pretty tough process trying to learn that, but I have gotten good screams now. The growls are pretty bad, they actually have a good tone and nice gutteralness but there is way too much wind and they are too quiet. So a lot of the growls that were on the demo got switched over to screams, except I am hoping to record growls on "Aerial View"
because that is the doom song! It's got to have them. I've been practicing and trying to figure out how to get a less windy sound with the growls so we'll see how it goes...
I personally think Chaos, Aerial View, and Epitaph are the best on the demo... Anyway, here are a few rapid fire questions:
What is your current favorite CD?
Ugh, that's a hard question. This stuff goes in print and my favorites change very often. I'd always have to stick with Opeth's Still Life
though, as it was the first metal CD I ever bought.
What are five CD's that everyone should own?
It's going to be different from the last list, haha...
1. Opeth - Still Life
2. My Dying Bride - Songs of Darkness, Words of Light
3. Sigh - Imaginary Sonicscape
4. Blind Guardian - Nightfall in Middle-Earth
5. Pain of Salvation - The Perfect Element
Tell me about the studio you used.
The studio is actually my bedroom, it's been converted into a studio. I use a laptop with Adobe Audition 1.5 to record into. The laptop is really to slow to handle that kind of load but somehow I manage to get the whole song in there, mix it and add all the effects, and master it. I don't use a "professional studio" but those things are overrated anyway. It's still basically recording into a computer and sending the harddrive off to [b]Sneap or Swano
to mix or master it. Or James Murphy
. Totally name-dropping here. I'm sure if I sent the new promo recordings to them, they'd make it sound completely professional like a high-budget studio album, but a high-budget is something I don't have. I don't even have a low-budget. I think my budget is somewhere in the "non-existent" category. The money I have in my savings account is for an emergency or to help pay for college or something like that. So yeah, home studio. Luckily my association with a certain e-zine got me sent some free musical devices in the mail. Granted it didn't function properly, but I did manage to get it to function my own way. Don't know if I should name it after I just said it didn't function properly. But oh well.
How about the artwork? Do you do that too?
No, I found this artist on the internet just searching around randomly, and I found Merlijn Zeeders. He's got a lot of really impressive work, and he agreed to make artwork for the album. Several months later, after he had lost his computer, got hit by a car, and other unfortunate events, he finally returned and agreed to still work on artwork for the promo! It's a great joy to have him working on it, since he has released a great deal of impressive artworks on his website...
Alright, thanks for your time! Any last words?
Before I walk the plank? Haahh just kidding. I'd like to thank all the fans, of course. Some of them have been very supportive and there has actually been a lot of people listening to the music, which always makes me happy. I'd like to thank my parents for financial support, of course and my mom likes Rainwound
! Neither of my parents know of the existence of Satanic Dirge, I hope. it's been very hush hush around here about that. Just check out the bands and enjoy the music I guess, that's really all I hope for unless by some miracle Satanic Dirge
gets signed to a label! That would be sweet to get a massive release of the albums. Download the Satanic Dirge
demo from the official site! Check out the myspace pages for some other tracks as well, and enjoy.. take care!
Official Satanic Dirge Website
Offical Satanic Dirge Myspace page
Official Rainwound Website
Official Rainwound Myspace page