You can read this post in: Portuguese (Brazil)
Coming from Austria, Throes do a Sludge/Doom metal with very own characteristics. Showing great compositions in your first album Use Your Confusion I-VII, the band shows a mature and captvating album. If you like the genre, if you look for new bands, Throes is what will fill the lack.
First of all, thanks for the interview.
GroundCast – To warm up, tell us, how everything started?
Mani: I always wanted to make the music I could imagine listening to 24 hours a day. And that called for a band that couldn’t be labeled “doom” or “grindcore” or whatever, but something unique, something that took the best elements from everything I was listening to, put them together and made something of its own kind of it. That’s also what I told Leeb when I met him two years ago at a party. We found out that we shared this vision and he told me, he and a guitarist where looking for a drummer. So I told him I was in.
GroundCast – What are your influences?
Leeb: There’s a very broad spectrum. Although we also like bands that are labeled “doom” or “sludge” and we have to admit they were important to get our thing started, we more and more rediscover the bands we grew up with, bands from the 90s and 80s.
GroundCast – In December last year you released your first material, Use Your Confusion I-VII, how was the acceptance of this material?
Helmut: Though we planned a pure “digital strategy” with the option of releasing the album on vinyl later on, we can tell from the reaction of people that there still is a demand for CDs. So we will have the album out on CD soon to get more reviews and be able to meet the demand at concerts. But for the reactions until now: mostly positive with some very constructive criticism. At a concert one guy told me we sound like “CROWBAR, but more progressive” and somebody told Leeb we were a “doom version of PRONG”.
GroundCast – I have to say that your first release is really great, I listened some songs in YouTube and its really great. Exist some concept behind the first full-length?
Helmut: I totally love concept albums and always – also before THROES, when playing in other bands – tried to have at least some concept at the core of a record. That’s why, when we started writing songs, I had this idea of creating an album inspired by the novel “Galiot” by the slovenian writer Drago Jancar. I was fascinated by this work and its dark yet loony atmosphere. In my opinion it fitted the music we had created so far. I told the guys and we created this idea of having several songs in a certain order to fit the storyline inspired by the book. But as it turned out, I wasn’t able to write lyrics that would do honor to the great novel of Jancar 🙂 So I wrote some other lyrics but we kept the specific order of the songs created – which is also the order we recorded them in. When it came to finding a title for the album we had created, I tried to figure out what was the common element in the songs which were not intended to have a red chord. By using this method I found that all of the songs are circling around the topic of being thrown into an existence and the ways one tries to cope with this perception of life, of time, of existence itself. So in the end, it’s not really a concept, but a very long-winded and often very ironic reflection on existence and time.
GroundCast – You bring strong characteristics from Sludge/Doom, but at the same time you have something yours, how is the composition process? Do you have a main composer or all the band helps?
Mani: All the songs are written together in the rehearsal room. Of course it always starts out with an idea one of us comes up with. But during the process of writing the ideas contributed are often heavily modified.
Helmut: Having played in a band in which all of the songs were written by the guitarists only, I was very surprised how well writing songs in a group can work and even more surprised that a drummer can be the driving force behind the writing process.
Leeb: Given that all of us are multi-instrumentalists it’s fascinating where the writing process sometimes takes us when we end up playing instruments which are not the ones we play on stage or using instruments not used in the recording or on stage to generate ideas. Like playing the bass with a spoon…
Mani: …or having a trombone – Leeb is a very experienced trombone player – on the recording. Or using metal tubes as percussion to create sounds used on the recording.
GroundCast – We are in internet era, where everything can be downloaded quickly and for free. What do you think about it?
Helmut: As we do not expect to earn anything with our music we see the distribution of music through channels like youtube, facebook or bandcamp as a great opportunity and have no problems with copyright infringement or the like. Quite the opposite: we welcome it…
Mani: …as long as EMINEM is not making money with a sample of our music.
Helmut: At least in the near future we do not expect anyone to make money with our music, so at least the spreading of it within a global community of people interested in music as ours is a great thing. For us it is simply a convenient way of spreading our work without big investments. If it wasn’t for the internet how would an Austrian underground band be known to, for instance, Brazilian audiences? So we see this development rather positive. More generally speaking it is, of course, a problem for musicians, who make their living with music, that songs and albums can be downloaded for free. But for our specific situation it is something different. But there’s another problem we see with the download-culture that is developing these days: the appreciation of the music downloaded is not the same as it was purchased physical copies were the only way to have new music. You had to really inform yourself and consider what to buy next and then, once you had bought a record, really sit down and occupy yourself with it. And then again you had to save money and, again, really think about what you wanted to buy next.
Leeb: But that’s also a reason why we want to have our albums also released on vinyl in the future.
Mani: And that’s also a reason why we created an album, in the sense of a piece of work consisting of parts in a specific order, instead of just having a couple of songs recorded.
GroundCast – The Austria scene I know is of bands like Summoning, Golden Dawn, Raventhrone, Die Verbannten Kinder Evas, Dornenreich and go on, but how is the musical scenario for Sludge/Doom metal?
Mani: I don’t know any of the bands mentioned…
Helmut: …because you are not into black metal. But how come you mention all these bands, but not BELPHEGOR and PUNGENT STENCH? Or, concerning Doom Metal, JACK FROST?
Leeb:Come on, guys, that’s not the question. To answer the question: There’s quite a vital doom/sludge/stoner scene in Austria with the annual DOOM OVER VIENNA Festival, dedicated concert series and excellent bands like OUR SURVIVAL DEPENDS ON US, IRON HEEL, REFLECTOR, to name a few.
GroundCast – What are the future plans for the band?
Leeb: Currently we are working on new material, which is planned to be released as an EP later this year. And of course there are some gigs in Austria coming our way in 2014…
Mani: …and hopefully some in Brazil in 2015. Feel free to invite us! 🙂
GroundCast – Do you live with music (as producers or other things related)?
Leeb: Besides THROES I also play bass in a band called ENCOMPASS THE ALL.
Mani: If you mean, if we make a living from music: No. My job is absolutely not related to music, except for the fact that I listen to music all day while working.
Helmut: As mentioned before, we do not make our living from our music. Neither in this band, nor with anything else. It’s more like we are earning our money to spend it for music. Sad but true, one might say. But the positive thing about it is that we can create music independently from financial considerations and we appreciate this resulting artistical freedom a lot.
GroundCast – Nowadays we see lots of bands born and dying, I can say that exist a lack of creativity, which advice can you give for the people that wanna start a musical career, as amateur or professional?
Mani: There’s no advice we could give to professionals because we ourselves are bloody amateurs on our instruments and are, as mentioned in the context of music and the internet, in a situation that is completely different from that of professional musicians.
Helmut: I think that the only reason to do ANYTHING is that you enjoy what you are doing. No matter if you are playing music or working as a lawyer: if you like what you are doing you will be good at it or become good at it with time. And if not so: You are at least still enjoying what you are doing.
GroundCast – Thanks for your time, now the space is yours to say something to our readers. Good lucky and a long road for you. Best regards.
Leeb: Thank you for the opportunity to make us known to Brazilian readers. Dear readers, enjoy our music at http://throesmusic.bandcamp.com/ or http://www.youtube.com/user/throesmusic/featured and become our friends at https://www.facebook.com/throes.at
Mani: If you like long roads come to see us at our next show in Graz on May 16th.
Helmut: And if you are lazy travellers but enjoy our music, feel free to contact us and book us