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Neaera - Neaera

At man kan komme frygteligt skævt ind på et album, er mit møde med Neaeras selvbetitlede syvende album et godt eksempel på: Jeg satte albummet på, mens jeg lavede noget andet, og blev hurtigt irriteret over frontmanden Benjamin Hillekes skrigende vokal; den dominerede samtlige numre, og gjorde det umuligt at bedømme helheden. Førstehåndsindtrykket var alt andet end positivt, men det ændrede sig heldigvis ved de senere gennemlytninger.
Men hvad var anderledes, ud over at jeg nu lyttede helhjertet? Ikke vokalen, for Hillekes stil er energisk skrigende, og den varieres kun få gange med lidt brølen. Men hvad der ændrede sig, var min opfattelse af musikken, som med sin Thrash’ede stil mere end opvejede vokalens mangler. Det hele afvikles i pænt højt tempo, hvilket booster energien. Men endnu vigtigere er det lækre drive, som numrene er udstyret med; det rykker vedholdende fremad, hvilket har gjort ”Neaera” til en effektiv indpisker i motionscenteret. Samtidig lykkes det at variere udtrykket overraskende meget, så det også er en fornøjelse at lytte til hjemme i stuen.
Albummet kommer efter en fem år lang pause, hvor medlemmerne havde brug for at lave noget andet end Neaera. Og det var åbenbart en fornuftig beslutning med et break, for der er masser af spillelyst at spore på ”Neaera” – titlen indikerer en genstart af bandet, som har fået et glimrende afsæt.

Tracklist:
1. (Un) drowned
2. Catalyst
3. False Shepherds
4. Resurrection of Wrath
5. Carriers
6. Rid the Earth of The Human Virus
7. Sunset of Mankind
8. Lifeless
9. Eruption in Reverse
10. Torchbearer
11. Deathless
Samlet spilletid: 43:55

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Neaera: Album detaljer og ny single online

Det tyske metal band Neaera udgav forleden (1. marts) deres nye album ”Ours Is The Storm” igennem Metal Blade Records, bandet har i sammen omgang lagt tredje single fra albummet online i form af en lyrik video, find videoen nedenfor.

Besøg også Metal Blade’s band side til Neaera, her, for at høre de 2 første singler, titel sangen ”Ours Is The Storm” og ”Decolonize The Mind” (denne video kan også ses nedenfor).

”Ours Is The Storm” vil udkomme i 3 formater; først almindelig jewelcase cd, digital download og som limited first edition digipak som også indeholder en bonus dvd og to bonus sange. Bonus dvd’en vil indeholde den 45 minutters dokumentar ”Forging The Storm”, som viser hvad bandet har fortaget sig des idste par år, hvad der sker backstage og hvordan de har skrevet de nye sange og meget andet. Find en teaser til dvd’en nedenfor.

 

Neaera har udtalt sig følgende om bonus sangene:

In addition to the bonus track 'Skeleton World' the limited Digi version of Ours is The Storm will also feature 'Repressed Hate', one of the very first songs we ever wrote. 'Repressed Hate' was on our very first demo, and we decided to re-record it as a treat for all the die-hard Neaera fans out there who have been supporting us from day one. And for everyone else as well, of course, haha! Furthermore, there will be an ADDITIONAL bonus song featured EXCLUSIVELY on the version of the Digipak available at EMP. We chose to cover 'Shadows' by Grindcore juggernauts Nasum, simply because it is a killer track and Nasum was one of the most influential Grind bands ever and one of our all-time faves. This track is our homage to them. Remember, you can get the version with this additional track only and exclusively at EMP, so be quick to preorder!"

 

Track listen til ”Ours Is The Storm” er følgende:

1. The Deafening
2. Ours Is The Storm
3. Decolonize The Mind
4. Through Treacherous Flames
5. Ascend To Chaos
6. Walk With Fire
7. My Night Is Starless
8. Black Tomb
9. Between Us And Annihilation
10. Slaying The Wolf Within
11. Back To The Soul
12. Guardian Of Ashes

 

Neaera - "Through Treacherous Flames" - Lyric Video:

Neaera - "Decolonize the Mind"

Forging The Storm - The DVD - Official Trailer

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Neaera - Ours Is The Storm

Efter en kort intro brøler frontmanden Benjamin Hilleke "Ours Is The Storm!!”, hvorefter Neaera viser, at det er en meget passende titel på bandets sjette album. Det indeholder en knaldhård omgang Metal, som er en blanding af Death- og Thrash , men som også indeholder elementer af Black. Det hele får en ekstra skarp fremtoning via Hillekes vokal, der skærer gennem luften som en luftværnssirene. Samtidig har den en ekstrem vrede, som man normalt finder i Hardcore.

Denne cocktail er voldsom, men den indeholder så meget energi og fremføres så sikkert, at resultatet overbeviser, og jeg kan ikke lade være med at være imponeret af, hvor godt et greb Neaera har om alle facetter i musikken. Alligevel bliver det i længden en smule anstrengende at blive udsat for det konstante bombardement, for det kniber med at variere numrene; selvom der er forskellige musikalske elementer i spil, slår det ikke igennem på de enkelte numre.  Det samme gælder for vokalen, for Hilleke nærmer sig min grænse for dén type vokal.

Selv om albummet er godt, og langt hen ad vejen følger den vej, bandet slog ind på på forgængeren ”Forging The Eclipse”, kan det ikke helt leve op dets niveau. Derfor må albummet nøjes med en bedømmelse lige under forgængerens – absolut ingen katastrofe.

 

Tracklist:

1. The Deafening

2. Ours Is The Storm

3. Decolonize The Mind

4. Through Treacherous Flames

5. Ascend To Chaos

6. Walk With Fire

7. My Night Is Starless

8. Black Tomb

9. Between Us And Annihilation

10. Slaying The Wolf Within

11. Back To The Soul

12. Guardian Of Ashes

 

Samlet spilletid: 44:29

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Neaera

Revolution Music: Hallo. First of I would like to congratulate you on your new album “Let The Tempest Come” witch was released the 10th april.
Stefan Keller: Thanx, buddy! We appreciate it.

Revolution Music: Could you start out by introducing your self and tell us what part in the band you have?
Stefan Keller: My name is Stefan Keller, I am playing guitar and mostly responsible for the lyrics in the band.

Revolution Music: How and why did you come up with the name “Neaera”? Does it have any special meaning?
Stefan Keller: We just liked the idea of a band name that does not have an obvious, but a metaphoric meaning. We were searching for band names in a book called "Paradise Lost" by John Milton form the 15th century. This is where we found the name. Neaera is a person from Greek mythology and her life is a metaphor for oppression and freedom.

Revolution Music: How did you all come together, and became the band you are to day?
Stefan Keller: Tobias, Benjamin Donath and myself played in a death grind band called Malzan before. That band ceased to exist and a new band was founded. Originally, Neaera was planned as a side projectonce, but became the main thing later on.

Revolution Music: This is your second album and is released trough Metal Blade Records, how did the contract get established, and how are they to work with?
Stefan Keller: Metal Blade Records are great to work with. They are nice and friendly and we have a quite personal relation. We got the record deal by sending them a demo, which we recorded half a year after the formation of the band. We very totally unknown at that time and hadn't played a lot of shows, but MB offered us the deal anyhow. And, of course, we signed it right away.

Revolution Music: Why did you choose the title “Let The Tempest Come” for this record, does it have any special meaning?
Stefan Keller: We thought about using a hope giving and optimistic title for this record. The Tempest stands for challenges and problems in life that we all have to face. Let the Tempest Come means: "Whatever will come shall come. I am ready and it will not bring me down."

Revolution Music: When you started working on this album, how long did the process take from the first step to the final product? Was it hard to write new material for this record or did it come naturally for you?
Stefan Keller: It wasn't hard at all actually. As writing songs is a constant process in this band, it took us one year to write the reocrd. We are trying to write one song per month, which is the best method for this band.

Revolution Music: Where did you record the album, and who produced it?
Stefan Keller: We recorded the album in January in Denmark. It was done by Jacob Hansen. The studio is really great and Jacob Hansen not only did a fabulous job, but also is great person, a professional and a perfectionist, who knows how to get the most out of the musicians.

Revolution Music: Are you trying to express something through your music?
Stefan Keller: Musically and lyrically we are simply putting in the music what is in ourselves. We are playing all styles of metal music that we like and love and through our lyrics we want to voice what we think goes wrong with the world. Everything which makes us sad or angry or moves us is cna be found in the lyrics.

Revolution Music: How has the album been received by the press, the critics and the fans so far?
Stefan Keller: It is really good! The main press in metal in Germany has preceived it way better than the last record and I haven't heard anything bad about it yet. We are more than happy with the rections from fans and media so far.

Revolution Music: What is your view on the group’s position in today’s music scene?
Stefan Keller: As a lot of other bands, we also took some profit from the metalcore movement or trend or whatever you want to call it. We are very aware of the fact that our record deal had something to do with that, as we are quite sure that Metal Blade were looking for such bands art that time. Now, we still have our hardcore influences, but we don't feel dependent on a certain trend or something.

Revolution Music: How would you compare the material on “Let The Tempest Come” to your previous material?
Stefan Keller: It is a little darker, faster, more brutal and a little bit more melancholic. The song structures are more mature and and used way more growls. The sound of the record is heavier, rawer and the guitars sound dirtier than on The Rising Tide.

Revolution Music: How do you think old and new fans will react to the album?
Stefan Keller: I cannot not imagine that people don't like the new record when they liked the first one. It is not that we have developed so much as to speak of a change in style or something. All the trademarks are still there and I hope that we have worked them out a little more.

Revolution Music: A lot of metal artists are releasing a lot of documentary and live DVDs, do you guys have anything like planned for the future?
Stefan Keller: We just shot a video for the title track, but there is no entire DVD planned yet. We have filmed a show on the Darkness Over Europe Tour with Caliban, but there are definitley no concrete plans yet.

Revolution Music: What kind of stuff did you grow up listening to, and what kind new music do you listen to these days?
Stefan Keller: Tobias and myself, who write the riffs and music listened mostly to Swedish Death Metal like Drak Tranquillity, In Flames and At the Gates. But we also listen to Hatebreed and The Black Dahlia Murder and Heaven Shall Burn. Also at the moment, we mostly hear the new Maroon record and Coldplay a lot.

Revolution Music: Have any of these bands been source of inspiration for the album?
Stefan Keller: Yes, the Gothemburg death metal scene has had major influences on our music.

Revolution Music: In your time as musicians, what is your biggest musical achievement so far?
Stefan Keller: There are two things. One thing is definitely to be able to tour through Europe in a real tourbus with great and famous bands like As I Lay Dying, Heaven Shall Burn or Caliban. The other thing which is just amazing is having the privilege to write and record albums, which are then going to be released worlwide. Amazing!

Revolution Music: Could we expect any European tour and maybe se the band in action here in Denmark any time soon?
Stefan Keller: We might play the Fredericia Hardcore Fest again, but I don't know anything concrete yet. Something will probably happen, but I can't tell you concrete dates. Sorry.

Revolution Music: How did you think the music scene is in Europe, compared to the scene in the US?
Stefan Keller: I guess that the American music scene is changing faster. The European scene is open-minded for new stuff, but it is way more constant or conservative even, particularly when it comes to metal. Sometimes I have the impression that the US is more open to trends and new things, which are the best for a while and then will be totally neglected again when a new thing is found to be euphoric about. I think both scenes have their advantages and disadvantages.

Revolution Music: What would be the ultimate tour, festival or show for you to play at?
Stefan Keller: Ok, I say Slayer, Unearth, Slipknot, In Flames, Heaven Shall Burn, Maroon and us.

Revolution Music: Do you have any breaking news with the bands?
Stefan Keller: No, not really, I am sorry.

Revolution Music: That’s all we’ve get this time, do you have anything that you'd like to add or say?
Stefan Keller: I want to use this chance to say thanks to everyone who was at the Fredericia Hardcore Festival last year. Also I want to say Hi to our friends of As We Fight and Hatesphere and the greatest producer in the world: Jacob Hansen!

Revolution Music: We would like to say thanks a lot for you’re time. And we wish all you guys all the luck in the future whatever it might bring. And thanks to Target Distribution for setting this interview up.
Stefan Keller: No problem - I have to thank!

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Neaera

Revolution-music: Hallo. First of i would like to congratulate you on your new album “Rising Tide Of Oblivion” witch will be released the 21 th Martch.
Benjamin Donath: Hey, thanks, we are really excited about the upcoming release, we can´t wait!

Revolution-music: Could you start out by introducing your self and tell us what part in the band you have?
Benjamin Donath: My name is Benjamin Donath, I´m the bass player in Neaera.

Revolution-music: This questian is one you must get alot, how did the band originaly get to getter and how did you come up with the name “Neaera”? What does it mean?
Benjamin Donath: Stefan, Tobi and myself had been playing together before in a grindcore band called Malzan. Tobi originally formed Neaera together with Sebastian, whom he knew from another band they used to have, as a side project to Malzan. Back then we did not have a name for this side project yet. Tobi asked me if I wanted to play the bass in the newly formed side project, and I thought it might be fun so I agreed. Tobi then asked Benny, a friend of ours, to do the vocals. Benny had not been in any bands until then, he was very enthusiastic about singing in a band, so he said yes. Thus the first lineup of the band was completed. Stefan joined us after our very first show. Our then main band Malzan was disbanded about 2 months after we had founded our side project, so it became our only band. Shortly before our first show we were desperately looking for a name. At that time, because we were such a “young” band, we did not really have a concept as to how the band name should correspond to our lyrical message. We ended up choosing “The Ninth Gate” as our band name, but that was rather out of necessity, a kind of emergency solution. We never really felt comfortable with that name, also because it was the name of a movie. So shortly before we signed the contract with Metal Blade records, we decided to really stick our heads together and find a name that would fit better to our overall message. In the book “Paradise Lost” by John Milton, we came across the name Neaera, which comes from Greek mythology. Neaera was a woman who was mistreated and oppressed for most of her life, to put it shortly. We thought the whole story of Neaera´s life was very relatable to things that we think are going wrong in today´s world. Neaera for us stands as a reminder to stand up for oneself and try to influence things to make them change to the better.

Revolution-music: The album will be released through Metal Blade Records, how did the contract with Metal Blade get established, and how have they been treating you?
Benjamin Donath: In February 2004 we recorded a 7-track demo CD which we then cut short into a 3-track promo CD to send to labels. Metal Blade showed interest and so we sent them the rest of our material. After we had had some email contact with them, they offered us a record contract, which was a dream come true for us! Metal Blade sent us the contract, which of course was written in a very sophisticated way, which made it kind of hard for us to understand. We decided that it would probably the best thing if we discussed everything with them personally, so we ended up driving about 500 or so kilometers to the Metal Blade Europe residence. We had a really great talk with Michael, Andreas and Todde, they were really cool to us and explained all the details of the contract that we thought were important. We went back home and signed the contract the next day. Metal Blade have been treating us really great, they are always available to us if we have questions, and most importantly they are not putting any pressure on us whatsoever. They just let us make our music and write our songs, we just feel free to do as we like, artistically of course, hahahaha.

Revolution-music: In November last year you entered Stage One Studios in Bühne, Germany, with producer Andy Classen to record “Rising Tide Of Oblivion” how was it to work with him?
Benjamin Donath: Simply great. Andy is such a relaxed, experienced and professional guy, we always felt comfortable working with him. Of course we were really nervous because this was our debut album after all, but Andy took that nervousness from us completely. We are extremely satisfied with the record, it would definitely not be what it is if it weren´t for Andy.

Revolution-music: Could you tell us about you're process of making this album?
Benjamin Donath: We just wrote our songs whenever we thought we had enough ideas. Generally we just tried to write songs that we thought were both diverse and in your face. Some of the songs on the record were already on the demo, we re-recorded those for “The Rising Tide of Oblivion”, and some were also rearranged. Stefan recorded both acoustic tracks for the album in a studio in Münster together with two friends of his. When Neaera was founded Tobi was our only guitarist, of course getting Stefan to join the band as second guitar player brought a lot more ideas to the band. It just gives each guitar player the possibility to influence the other. Sometimes I will add a riff, bost most of the riffs come from Tobi and Stefan. We arrange the songs together. Every band member can just throw in their ideas, so there is something from everyone in the songs.

Revolution-music: Where do you get your inspirations from for this album, both on the musical part but also the lyrical part?
Benjamin Donath: Our main musical influences are bands such as At The Gates, Dismember, Bloodbath, Edge of Sanity, Dark Tranquility, Unanimated, Amon Amarth, Hatebreed, Heaven Shall Burn, Unearth and Born From Pain, to name only a few. Our lyrics basically deal with thing that we think are going wrong in our world. Unfortunately that seems to be a lot. Our lyrics deal with topics such as war, genocide, religion, such things. As you can see these are topics that deal with things on a global level, but we also have lyrics that deal with isolation of the individual, rape and such, which are topics that are on a more personal level.

Revolution-music: When you make an album, do you make it for yourselves or for your fans?
Benjamin Donath: Both. In terms of the music, I have to say we made the album for ourselves. Of course you always make music for your fans because you want people to hear and feel what is important to you. That comes with the lyrics we have. But when we write our music, the first thing we take care of is that we can identify with them and that they don´t become boring to us. We honestly don´t write songs thinking about whether this or that part might scare away this or that group of people or whether this or that riff is more attractive to this or that group of people. Being able to identify with our music is the most important thing to us. Of course it is just a great feeling to see that many people so far seem to be able to identify with our music as well. The fact that everything we do is really 100 % us makes this feeling much greater. If it weren´t that way, it just would not be honest.

Revolution-music: Does the album have any special massage to the fans?
Benjamin Donath: We just want to get out listeners to think about how to influence things around them instead of becoming numb because of all the shit that is happening all around. Our message is basically that self realization is always better than self isolation.

Revolution-music: The artwork for the album has be designed by art student Martin Grossmann from Steinfurt, why did you chose him to make the artwork, and why did you end up using this cover?
Benjamin Donath: We chose Martin to do the artwork mainly because he is a long time friend of ours. He is just a very creative person. He plays guitar in a local metal band called Steel Death, and he does a lot of their artwork as well, even videos and such. We were really confident that if we gave him some input from our side ( music, lyrics etc. ), he would be able to create something good out of it, and in our opinion he did. We are really satisfied with the whole concept he developed, and he was always open to our suggestions as well, so again there is a lot of our nput in the artwork. The whithering leaves he used in our opinion are great to show that something is fading away, decaying. That is Martin´s approach to “oblivion”, and we liked it, so we chose to use this cover.

Revolution-music: You wrote on your web site, that "The songs will consist mostly of (Swedish) death metal riffs, but they will also contain mosh parts and even some melodic black metal passages,” was it a nartrual move for you guys to play that style?
Benjamin Donath: It was a natural move for us to try to experiment with many different styles of metal, I think. As said, the band was originally formed as a side project, the aim being to be able to just go in all kinds of directions musically. I think the band has always kept this experimental “spirit”. The balance of parts in a song is very important to us, if one kind of mood overweighs, things can become boring very quickly. We wanted to avoid this by using the different musical measures mentioned above. We just have fun experimenting, and I think one can hear that. I guess you could call that a natural move, yes.

Revolution-music: Are you planing to record any other music videos for the album?
Benjamin Donath: Of course that would be great. We are always kind of playing around with ideas on how to adapt our music visually, but there are no actual plans for a video shoot yet.

Revolution-music: You only have a few concerts planted in March, April, and May all in Germany, are you planing a tour supporting “Rising Tide Of Oblivion”?
Benjamin Donath: Yes, that is currently in the works. We would definitely love to tour as soon as possible, but besides those you mentioned, we don´t have any confirmed dates yet, I´m afraid. But we are working constantly to get consecutive dates for a tour together. As soon as we have dates, we will definitely put them on our website, promise!

Revolution-music: Could we expect any shows in Denmark?
Benjamin Donath: Of course we will try to get as many countries as we possibly can for a tour. As I said, we don´t have any confirmed dates yet, so I don´t want to draw any conclusions. Personally, I love Denmark very much, I have come there every summer for about 15 years or so, except for last summer when I was in Greece. Denmark´s a great country, and the people are really relaxed. And of course playing a Scandinavian country would be awesome!

Revolution-music: How did you think the music scene is in Europe, compared to the scene in the US?
Benjamin Donath: The European scene still seems to be much more underground that the US scene. Hard to say why though.

Revolution-music: What would be the ultimate tour or show for you to play at?
Hellfest or Pressure Festival would work for me,hahahaha.

Revolution-music: The metal scene has recently had a huge loss, when “Dimebag" Darrell Abbott got shot on stage at a concert. What are your thoughts on that sad event?
Benjamin Donath: I could not believe this when I heard it. I personally think that Dimebag was one of the most talented guitarists music in general has ever seen, and for me he was the undisputed king of metal guitar. It´s already a tragedy to have some with so much talent and such a great personality taken away. But the way in which it happened is just perverse. It´s not like he died a normal death, quietly, peacefully. He got shot by some asshole whose name is not worth being mentioned. That just shows once again how insane the gun laws in the US are. If such a maniac can own a weapon, something is very wrong. The sad thing is that it always takes a tragedy like this before such issues are discussed. And what makes it even worse is that despite this sad event, the laws probably will remain the same. That is just very frustrating. I can only wish Dimebag eternal peace wherever he may be right now.

Revolution-music: When you think of a thing like that could happen, aren't you a bit frightened of going on stage and play?
Benjamin Donath: No.

Revolution-music: That's all we've get this time, do you have anything that you'd like to add or say?
Benjamin Donath: Thanks for the interview! We hope to come to Denmark as soon as possible to do some ass kicking! Skal, jeg elsker dig! ;)

Revolution-music: We would like to say thanks a lot for you're time. And wish your guys all the luck in the future. And also a big thanks to Target Distribution for setting up the interview.

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