Vetrodar, seinerseits Visionär und Idealist, formte vor nicht all zu langer Zeit die Band „Tverd“. Aber nicht nur Visionen, sondern auch harte Arbeit und jede Menge Erfahrung, gesammelt durch die Vorgänger-Combo „Pagan Reign“, stecken im neuen Projekt. Bereits mit ihrem Debut „Follow the sun’s way“ ließen die Russen Kritikerherzen höher schlagen. Wir sprachen mit Vetrodar über seine Visionen, dem richtigen Slavian Pagan Metal, dem Vorgänger-Projekt „Pagan Reign“ und was die russische Szene sonst noch zu bieten hat. Trotz sprachlicher Barrieren kam es zu einem sehr ausführlichen, ja sogar ausschweifenden Interview, welches wir im Sinne der Originalität nicht ins Deutsche übersetzen haben lassen. Keine Angst, mit dem Original ist nicht Russisch, sondern Englisch gemeint. Gerade deswegen, weil weder ich dem Russischen, noch Vetrodar dem Deutschen mächtig ist.
Folkmetal.at: Hello! Tverd started at January 2007. What was the ultimate cause tove finishted the chapter Pagan Reign after 10 years and to start the new Project Tverd?
All the matter is that one of group founders – Orey (Pagan Reign has been based in 1999 by Orey, Sloven and me) has decided to stop musical activity, in communication, with what I have decided to organise the absolutely new project, being based on the main old ideas of last structure and my new philosophy. Also one of the reasons of that I have created the new project, there was a presence at me absolutely new musical ideas which did not keep within any more frameworks of the old project. And I have replaced the name, as respected other participants Pagan Reign who were not included into my new structure.
Folkmetal.at: Which distinctive differences are between the old (Pagan Reign) and the new project?
Vetrodar: Tverd is natural development of the musical style Pagan Reign, all basic distinctions are connected by that now entirely for a musical and ideological component of group I answer. In project Tverd I managed to realise new musical and philosophical ideas. Music became more majestic and epic, there was magnificent Alexanders academic opera vocal and Svetlanas academic Russian folklore vocal. I began to pay more attention to a complete image of compositions which has resulted from more accurate conformity of a lyrical component of songs and music. Now it is the complete pictures of a life taken from depth of memory of ancient centuries. Also, on a new album I aspired to create the most readable and pure sound necessary for good perception of a considerable quantity of difficult parties.
Folkmetal.at: Two years ago, in June 2009 Tverd released Follow the suns way. Could you tell us the first responses from media world and fans – in Russia & the Rest of Europe? (Note: Folkmetal.at votes the new album 13 from 15 reason Points – Congratulation).
Vetrodar: The album has been very well estimated and in Russia and abroad. Some leading magazines and the edition Internet in Russia have put the greatest possible quantity of points in the reviews. People very much liked novelty and freshness of our music, high quality of realisation and especial, unique power and atmosphere of our compositions. On this album we tried to show ancient sacral beauty of traditional slavic pagan culture, outlook and power of Russian earth. All of us are very happy with result. It just that variant when that has turned out has appeared above expected result. Even I could not till the end of the nobility as our album will sound as a result. Creative work went even to record time in studios.
Folkmetal.at: I esteem the innovation on your new album. Tverd use many traditional instruments, an academic opera voice with Svetlana and also an opera voice with Alexander Ivanov, besides classical Metal Riffs. Any bands fails with this difference requirements. What do you mean: Tverd ve to reach so the own high claims on Follow the suns way?
Vetrodar: Everything, that you can hear on an album – there is a gradual realisation of already old my ideas. I wished to create the ideal formula of ethnic metal. For that moment we have made all at the greatest possible level. Now we already have new ideas which will be realised on our following album. Therefore I can is exact tell, that I with anybody did not compete in steepness, and simply did the music most interesting to me, wanted that it sounded so.
Folkmetal.at: Whatre your personality highlights on Follow the suns way?
Vetrodar: Complicated question, it as is difficult to tell, as well as to characterise the own person. I think, that everyone can judge my personal style according to the musical experience and preferences. I can tell only, that I tried to make songs academic, more symphonic with rich orchestral arrangements. I aspired to create a separate picture, a complete musical image as the artist drew brushes on a canvas. I wanted, that each song bore the unique emotional charge.
Folkmetal.at: For many Metalheads in Middle Europe, Russia is an exotic Metal Destination. But Insider knows, Russia offers a little but an excellent Metal community. From the side of Folk/Pagan Metal we know bands like Arkona, Pagan Reign, Wolfmare, Nomans Land, Alkonost and now Tverd. Have I forgotten important bands in your home country? And pls. tell us something abour the russian Folk/Pagan scene!
Vetrodar: Actually at us in Russia it is a lot of good musicians, but worthy professional groups as you, truly, have noticed at us not much. For development Folk/Pagan of a scene in Russia in 1998 the group has much made Northern Gate, they have let out two fine albums, but then me their style did not interest any more. Also Russian sources pagan metal had such groups as: Ashen Light with an album «Song of Veles», Butterfly Temple, Scald. Well and I think, on all Russian and, in general, Slavic Folk/Pagan scene such great commands for me, as have very strongly affected: Gods Tower (Belarus) and Nokturnal Mortum (Ukraine). In my opinion, these two commands stand at source Slavic Pagan Metal, they the first, everyone in the style, began to unite metal music with a slavic national melody still in the mid-nineties 20th centuries. These two groups have made very big impact on my understanding Slavic Pagan-Folk metal. Now at us appears more and more the young folklore metal commands, but personally for myself interesting I yet have not allocated anything. Basically this imitation already existing known groups.
At present I think, that two advanced Pagan-Folk Metal commands in Russia are Tverd (ex-Pagan Reign) and Arkona. Now it is two most perspective commands. At us excellent brotherly mutual relations and a healthy sports 😉 competition. We always went on development approximately at one level, periodically each other overtaking.
Folkmetal.at: What do you associate with the word: Pagan?
Vetrodar: Ancient national outlook; history of the people; laws of ancestors; pride; honour; a life; the native earth; the Universe; harmony with the nature; development and association; freedom; will; the strong person; justice; the truth; harmony of spirit, soul and a body.
Folkmetal.at: The Lyrics treats about the slavian history? Russian has an old history. Slavians and Vikings. Could you tell us more about the lyrics an his backrounds
Vetrodar: Our lyrics reflects ancient pagan outlook of Slavs, Slavic-and-Russian history, beauty of Russian nature and mutual relation of the person with the it come, the earth, ancestors, a way of the soldier, Russian culture, ceremonies and customs.
Slavs and Vikings have much the general. A part of northwest Slavs-pomorov in due time were Vikings or hired soldiers of the north, only in Russian they were called Variagi, the first Russian princes of the state Rus in 8 and 9 centuries – (Kniaz Ruric, Kniaz Oleg, Kniaz Igor and Great Kniaz Sviatoslav) had in the teams, both Vikings, and Varangians. The Scandinavian and Slavic mythology contains a considerable quantity of similar legends and concepts.
In the lyrics we wish to reflect spirit of that ancient epoch, to force people to be proud of the history and to love the native land.
Folkmetal.at: Fahter and son in one band. A rare constellation! I heard, your father aided your visions?
Vetrodar: Yes, it is very unusual for metal scenes. All the matter is that my father itself has created in due time group, played on a bass guitar and was its leader. And now, when there was a question about new bass player in group Tverd, the best variant and to think up it was impossible. My father completely divides my sights. At us excellent mutual relations and mutual understanding. Once my father has shown me on a guitar some melodies then I became the guitarist and now often I train my father in some modern technicians of play on a bass guitar.
Folkmetal.at: Shall we know other projects beside Tverd or ist Tverd momently a full time job for all members?
Vetrodar: Svetlana Lebedeva the folklore-ethnographic ensemble Slavianochka the Tver State University is the head. She is engaged in reconstruction of ancient Russian national traditions of folklore singing at professional level. Tverd, by the way, officially is division Slavjanochka. We help this ensemble with tool national arrangements. Now even we reconstructed national songs of the Balkan Slavs in our folklore processing. With this program in the autumn we will go to act on festival to Bulgaria. Tverd and Slavianochka is a single whole, simply style Tverd – Slavic Folklore Metal, and style Slavianochka – Slavic folklore Music in a pure authentic kind. All musicians of group Tverd also participate in the project Slavianochka.Ours drummer – Demosthen is also founder of Death Metal formation – Funeral Speech in Tver.
Folkmetal.at: The next concerts and Festivals in Russia and Europe? Maybe well see Tverd soon in German, Austria or Switzerland?
Vetrodar: Now all questions on performances dare. The spring of 2010 plans the big round in Europe. And now all of us densely are engaged in work on our new album which will be called – Rus.
Folkmetal.at: What do you know about Austria? You know Metal Bands from the alpine country?
Vetrodar: I very much like your country and your history, I with pleasure would spend a week – another, walking on small streets of your ancient cities in the centre of Europe. Also it is very interesting to me to admire it is crystal the beautiful nature of the Alpes. From groups I can allocate one, it – Summoning. Albums of this collective make upon me the big impression. I often relax and I get into an ancient, semi-fantastic picture of the past, listening to music of this collective.
Folkmetal.at: The last song on the new album Russian Lands sorrow includes for surprise Electronic parts – An advice for the next album?
Vetrodar: No, in a following album of such surprise you any more will not find out, it was an exclusive. All the matter is that the composition is connected with slavic pagan belief in reincarnation of spirit of the person. This track symbolises itself a course of time and continuity of generations. It is original transition from the past in the future. And, this future we is final have displayed in such, comical Brejk-bit to the form. But we wished to underline, as now heroes presently are born, it is time to new heroes to make just causes, and to revive old pagan tradition, differently there will come a decline of a civilisation or as it is told at you in the Scandinavian mythology – Ragnarok. 😉
Folkmetal.at: Thanks for your answers and we hope to see you soon in Austria.
Vetrodar: Thanks for interesting non-standard questions. We with pleasure will act in your country.
Hails to Pagan Heroes & Gods!
Das Interview führte Erich von Folkmetal.at im August 2009
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