Sonic Seducer Magazine | Interview with Monstergod

by Catrin Nordwig | April 2018 |

Your sound is, indeed, quite a unique mixture of oldschool and newschool electronics/goth stuff, it even has some synthpop moments. How do you bring these styles together? Must be quite challenging to throw all these – seemingly – generic borders over board, mustn’t it? It’s quite funny, when reading on FB that your sound is a mixture of, amongst other, The Sisters Of Mercy and The Retrosic I really wondered how that could go together, but yet, here you go, it’s quite a fitting description (and even reminds of acts such as Dance Or Die)…

Well, at the very beginning of our musical journey, we hoped to create some kind of mix of Suicide Commando and The Sisters of Mercy. Luckily, we failed, but we’ve managed to create something different—our own way of thinking about music and dealing with sounds. We don’t stick to any particular style, but rather try to express our feelings and emotions through music. And simply have fun when making songs.

It usually takes us a few years to make an album. It’s a long time, filled with various fascinations. We listen to other artists and try to learn from them. We’ve never limited ourselves to one, particular music style. Yes, we love goth music, but listen to some metal, industrial or dance as well. Working on new songs, we mix various inspirations in a very natural way and always stay curious. What would happen when you take some growling vocals and mix it with soft disco beat? What would Nick Cave do when he had played in the disco? Sometimes our curiosity leads us to the new, cool songs. Sometimes they’re not worth publishing.

This is your third full-length album. In your eyes: What is different to its predecessors?

“Invictus” is the most mature album, we’ve ever made. It took us almost 6 years to finish it, but we’re really proud of the result. Our listeners can easily recognize many characteristic elements of Monstergod style: symbolic poetry, nostalgic vocals and dark-electro vibes. But it’s the very first time we decided to invite other musicians to join us on the album, making it more diverse and unpredictable. We also did our best to focus on final production of the album to make it sound perfect.

How long did it take you to finish “Invictus”? And how did you work? Please give us some insights into your studio routines.

We’ve started to work on this album right after releasing Resurrected album, almost 6 years ago. Since then, we’ve made much more than 12 songs, but decided to release just those, that sound interesting in our opinion. Our studio work is probably not as exciting as you may expect. Both of us have the demanding careers outside the music, families with little kids and never-ending to do list. Furthermore, Marek lives in Berlin, while Miłosz stays in Wrocław, Poland. Therefore, we work mostly late at night contacting each other via Skype. We exchange some tracks and try to surprise each other. On our previous albums, we’ve played banjo and baglama or recorded a cover of Serbian folk song. At the end, we work with Kamil from Soyuz Studio to make final mix and mastering.

You were inspired by the poetry of Blake and Baudelaire once. What were your sources of inspiration for “Invictus” now?

We stick to some way of expressing emotions rather than any particular poets or authors. We feel quite confident, expressing our feeling with music. But when it comes to the lyrics… Well, sometimes it’s better to let professionals speak for you. On “Invictus” we used lyrics by Baudelaire, Verlaine or Poe. The most iconic poem is for sure “God lay dead”, wrote by Stephen Crane. It’s really powerful, sang or rather yelled by our friend Kr-lik (Controlled Collapse/Clicks) with a stunning guitar parts played by Sin Quirin from Ministry.

The album is entitled “Invictus”–quite a strong name. What’s the idea behind that?

Album takes its title from the poem written by William Ernest Henley. We used it as lyrics for one of our nostalgic ballades. With the repeating refrain “I am the master of my faith, I am the captain of my soul” it became for us a kind of manifesto, a declaration of independence. We think that being independent is much more than refusing to do what other people want you to do. First of all it’s taking responsibility for your own choices. We must admit, it’s quite a strong message for an electro album, but we didn’t contemplate, if it’s appropriate or not. We simply find it authentic.

And, in this context, you do care about your lyrics and have something to say. In your words: What is the new album about?

Using classical poetry may be taken as snobbery, but we simply hope that our listeners will enjoy interpreting, reinterpreting or even misinterpreting it with us. We hope everyone is going to find his own answer for this question. And we also accept the fact, that for some of our listeners lyrics and background are completely negligible. They just want the music to bring the good vibes to a dance floor and we are fine with it.

For „God Lay Dead“ you just tried your luck and asked Sin Quirin of Ministry to contribute the guitar parts – and he did agree! How did that feel, getting the commitment–and approval – of such an icon? And what was it like working with him? Did you meet in person?

Ministry is one of ours most admirable bands. Working on “God lay dead”, we felt that we miss some hard, powerful guitars. Who would do it better than Sin Quirin? We contacted him though we didn’t think he’s going to agree to work with us. But the did. After just few days, tracks were ready. We didn’t manage to meet him personally, but we hope to catch him at this year’s Meraluna.

Since this song is a bit out of line – and I mean it positively – of your musical style of „Invictus“ – how did that happen? It’s your „probably the heaviest song“ you’ve „ever written“… so, how did it happen that you composed this musical outrage?

We love the heavy songs played by Gojira or Meshuggah. Unfortunately, we don’t play guitars fast enough to make this kind of music J. God lay dead was composed as a hard electro song with distorted vocals. It was much closer to Suicide Commando than metal bands, but it didn’t meet our expections. After several changes the song evolved into some uncertain fields. That’s exactly what we love.

You’re from Wroclaw – when thinking of this city, I immediately link it to the Wroclaw Industrial Festival, but, obviously, that’s not the only “dark” underground event happening there… so please tell us a bit about what the scene in your home city is like.

There are two festivals worth mentioning in Wrocław and around. First of them is Wrocław Industrial Festival, gathering fans of hard industrial, electronic music or apocalyptic folk. People who are more into dark independent meet every year on Castle Party – gothic festival in Bolków, approximately 80 km from Wrocław. Festival takes place in an old castle and its surroundings and attracts many darks souls from Poland, Czech and Germany. Of course, there’s much more happening in Wrocław. It’s a multicultural, vivid city that supports independent artists. There are probably hundreds of punk, rock or electronic projects here, and numerous film, theater and art initiatives.  Of course, we can not forget about a club called Liverpool where we played several times before and where you can always find good music – not only from the dark side.

What are your plans for the coming months?

We haven’t played together for a long time, and now we’re spreading our time between promoting the new album and practising before the gigs, we’re going to play on upcoming Summer. You can hear us on Castle Party and few following concerts. More details soon to be read on our Fanpage.

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