Void Moon (Sweden)
Reading reviews of Void Moon on Blabbermouth [calls the band “sloppy” and “messy”] and on Brave Words and Bloody Knuckles [says the band’s problem is “rawness” and the non-“modern” production], makes me wonder if they listened to the album hurriedly to write the review. I like to give albums proper listens, be it 4 or 6 or however many, until I think I get it, and then decide how to approach the review.
Void Moon is a doom metal that plays midtempo and slow songs, with clean vocals, in the traditional doom metal sense, with a non-clicky production. Their album “On the Blackest of Nights” is melodic, melancholic honest-to-goodness doom metal. “Sloppy”? No way! “Sloppy” makes me think of some crust punk garage black death metal recordings (many of which are awesome!).
I find Void Moon’s album to be fun, in a doom-miserable way, and well done and I have certainly enjoyed it. As with most doom, it does take a few listens to understand the vibe, but it’s a rewarding experience.
Maybe it’s time you checked them out yourself, starting with this interview, answered by Peter (bass).
Hello, what’s up with Void Moon, now that you have released such a good album, what are your plans for world conquest?!
Hello! We are really pleased with the album and the great response we’ve gotten! At the moment we are actually rehearsing and writing new stuff, but we are also preparing for a few gigs during 2013 (nothing official yet). Our plan is to play live as much as possible to promote the band and our Doom!
According to Metal Archives, some of you have played in death or thrash bands, like Indemnity. Was it strange to get used to playing midtempo/slow? Was it difficult to convince Jonas Gustavsson to sing in a clear voice?
We have all played in a lot of different bands, heavy, thrash, black, death, doom. Haha, I think especially Thomas (drums) needed some time to adjust to the tempos. He is a very skilled drummer and he loves to play fast, but he also understands that sometimes for the good of the songs he has to play slow and simple. I think we have managed a pretty good mix on the album, there are some intense drum patterns as well as some really simple ones.
As for Jonas’s clean singing, he has mostly sung in a clean voice before so there wasn’t an issue really. His main focus is melodies and I’m impressed how he changed some songs just by adding a little melody to some passages.
Question for Thomas Hedlund and Peter Svensson, your rhythm section. Void Moon made me think about the fact that I can hear the bass, and also that drummer is not playing at lightning speed. Is there more freedom to play this way?
We have started rehearsing more or less all songs just by playing bass and drums. After we set a foundation we added guitars, harmonies and vocals. I, for one, am very pleased with playing a bit slower which gives me a bit more room to add some bass lines. Since I was in charge of recording I was very keen on getting the bass up front as well as the drums. A lot of new doom records have extremely high guitars and bass and drums are very low. I think it should sound like a real band playing.
Void Moon sometimes does not do guitar solos, and I have noticed that Void Moon has found another method of doing things: You do slow, simple melodies that are very memorable. Have I discovered the secret ingredient of Void Moon?! Tell us about that wonderful melody on “Cyclops” at about 1:30-2:00. Who came up with that melody, both Jonas and Erika? It is such a good melancholic melody. “Among the Dying” is depressively good song. At about 1:12-1:35 there it is again, the Void Moon secret ingredient for melancholic melody of doom. I notice that Erika is also in Cult of the Fox, a traditional heavy metal band?
Yes, I think you stumbled in on our secret! Just don’t tell anybody! Since the band started without a lead guitarist we developed a solo-less sound I think (there are a few solos though). Doing short melodies is often more effective than a solo.
I can’t remember who came up with the idea in “Cyclops,” but at first it was only one guitar playing. When both Jonas and Erika rehearsed it they both played that part with some variations. It sounded great and we worked how the melodies should fit together and then we kept it! Erika is, besides a good lead guitarist, excellent when it comes to melodies and harmonies.
Yes, both Erika and I play in Cult of the Fox. You can hear a lot of her melodies on the coming COTF-record (out in early 2013).
For you to play doom metal, what are the bands that convinced Void Moon to go for it and play doom? Do you like New Wave of British Heavy Metal doom bands like Witchfinder General or Pagan Altar? What about lesser-known Swedish bands like Stillborn from the 90s? I imagine you will be asked a million times about Candlemass.
The sound of Void Moon actually came from the songs I was putting together in the beginning of the band (I’m a lazy player so I play slow). We didn’t have a fixed agenda, it is just how it happened. We couldn’t name the band until we had a few songs to know what band name would fit the music! I’m a huge fan of Pagan Altar and it was great to be able to be on the same festival as they last year at Malta Doom Metal Festival. I really enjoy Witchfinder General as well, all the classic stuff! One of my favorite NWBHM-bands is Satanic Rites, but they are not so much doom. Great that you mention Stillborn! We have actually been discussing cover songs and one candidate is “I, the Stillborn” from “Necrospirituals” (album)!
We do not mind being compared to Candlemass, it is just a great honour that people think of them when they hear our music. They have influenced us both directly (like what would Leif do?) and indirectly growing up with their music.
Have you considered that the legends of doom metal (Black Sabbath, Candlemass, Trouble, etc.) are now old/soon retiring, and that at some point here in the next 10-15 years, a band like Void Moon can actually be one of the top bands of traditional doom metal? Your time is coming!
Yeah, that would be great! Not that they are retiring, but to get Void Moon up in the league of legends (of course, we know that we never can match those bands really, but it’s a very nice dream!). Hopefully, by that time we have put out a couple of albums and made a good name for us in the world of metal! Our goal now is just to put out music and play as many shows as possible!
How can people get in contact with you and your music and shirts? Maybe Void Moon fans can start a petition to get your band to play Wacken or Sweden Rock?
Thanks for the great interview! You can find all our merchandise (T-shirts, patches, cds and 7’) at our website www.void-moon.com or just e-mail us at email@example.com. We also have facebook and myspace. All tracks from the album are available at youtube, channel “mournblade666”. We hope that the word gets around so we can play at lot of gigs in the future. For us it doesn’t matter if it’s Wacken or the local pub, anywhere people want a dose of Epic Doom Metal we’ll be there!!!! THE END.--