Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: What type of artist are you?
M: A visionary. I enjoy setting goals, crafting pieces and making it all fit on a huge canvas of ideas. I don’t create music in the traditional way, but I have ideas, certain words or feelings, and create a piece around that – all in my head. It’s only when most of the song is already completed I pick up the guitar and start recording.
PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.
M: Born from darkness and reaching towards the light.
PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
M: It’s hard to separate what I like to listen to, and what have influenced my music. There are obvious traces of Burzum and the rest of the Norwegian black metal scene, but that’s mainly because these things are part of my blood. On the latest album there are, for those who listen well, inspiration from Phil Collins, Chopin, Leonard Cohen and a lot of other genres. I guess I keep some stuff in my mind which I respond well to in other music, transform it and utilize it to craft my own sound.
PD: What are your dreams and goals?
M: While always wishing to be better at what I do, I don’t really have goals. For me, goals are more of a disturbance than something which helps focus. It’s too… external. I am content as long as I can do the things I want to do without too much noise from the outside world. And when in that zone, I enjoy working to do better, to be better, to grow and to transform. Some are motivated by achieving goals, and I respect that, but for me it’s better to just exist in peace without disturbances. I consider freedom necessary, but not a goal.
PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?
M: I write and compose all my music myself. Up until now I’ve also recorded everything myself, but on “Gjennom meg går ingen til hvile” I utilized several session musicians to continue the work on the demo tracks I recorded.
PD: How do you promote your band and shows?
M: Minneriket does not play live, this is a one-man band with no wish to participate in the circus together with the rest of the clowns. Promotional work is the complete anti-thesis to musical creativity.
PD: What do you think about downloading music online?
M: As an artist I expect to be acknowledged for my work. If you think the art deserves it, I think you should support the artist by buying into their vision – either grabbing some merch or paying for the music. It’s not easy to make profit as an independent act. But I have nothing against downloads, and we live in a digital world. I would never prosecute any fan who illegally downloads my music, and everyone should be able to enjoy it no matter their financial situation. Just follow your own moral compass.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
M: Oh, several! There are actually moments where I hear a great song and wish it was my own. Many moments, actually, and in all genres. I guess “Plågoande o’helga plågoande” by Shining, “The Mercy Seat” by Nick Cave and “Snuff” by Slipknot are obvious songs which really captures some of the same feelings I work with in my own music. Or maybe “Gooba” by 6ix9ine, that song really rocks!
PD: What are some of your pet peeves?
M: Promotional work. A necessary evil.
PD: What is your proudest moment in music?
M: The combination of being able to create the kind of music I want, and also having an audience that listens to it. That makes me both proud and humble.
PD: So what are you working on at the moment?
M: I just released the album “Gjennom meg går ingen til hvile” with Minneriket and am spending most of my time promoting it. It took six years to write and record this one, so I’m 100% dedicated to supporting it as much as necessary. Other than that we’ve also talked about doing a new album with Æra, a sophomore album with Blodsgard and of course continuing Minneriket in some way or another post GMGITH.
PD: What music have you available online and where can we buy it from?
M: Right now you can check out Minneriket and the new release “Gjennom meg går ingen til hvile” on Spotify and other streaming services, and the music can be bought on BandCamp. There’s also a limited edition CD with the uncensored cover art (the original artwork is censored by Spotify etc.) and merch available.
Band/Artist location – Norway
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