Thanks for having time for our questions! To begin with, congratulations for your new album „Nuada of the silver arm“ – it’s great, I really like it!
Folkmetal.at: Compared to your first album, you have been to a real studio for the new one. Apart from the obvious, the better recording quality, what were the advantages you profited most from?
Stephen: It was a huge learning experience for all of us, this being our first time in a proper studio to work. We took a lot away from it. Advantages would obviously be the better production values, better recording gear and all round better workplace.
Going into our next work we now have a better idea of how we will do things this time around.
Folkmetal.at: The sound of your new album is quite retro and doomy. Could you tell me a bit about the decision to record it in that way?
Stephen: The material that we came out with suited the stories at hand, a lot darker material than our first, with that said going onwards we are going to have a lot more folk influence into the next work. Lot of interesting ideas forming at the moment, but still early days!
Folkmetal.at: What were the best and the most painful moments in the studio?
Stephen: Losing my voice and running out of coffee, joking. No, it was really a great experience and we learned a hell of a lot from going to a proper studio with a pro sound engineer. We won’t be going back to the way we used to do things, studios from now on is a must.
Folkmetal.at: Could you tell me something about the lyrics and the history behind them on „Nuada of the silver arm“?
Stephen: The concept of this album is about the life and death of one of our most pivotal high kings in Irish Mythology, Nuada of the silver arm. In the first battle of Magh Nia he had lost his arm to a great warrior named Sreng. Returning wounded to Tara, a great druid of his Diancecht created and forged a new arm of silver in the forges of Teamhair. When Nuada returned he became high king again and led an army with Lugh (the Sun god) against the tyrant Balor and his fomorian army. In the end Balor killed Nuada and in revenge he was slain by Lugh. The album finishes with the Dagda finding his harp Uaitne and putting the rest of the fomorian armies to a death sleep with the harp’s magic.
Folkmetal.at: It seems that you used less flutes in your new album. So, it sounds more black metal and less folk like. Was that intended or is it more coincidental?
Stephen: It was intended for this album, yes. We decided to go a bit darker for it due to the fact of being a darker story and concept. It needed that darkness there to suit the atmosphere of the battles and tremendous loss that came on the Tuatha De Danann. With that said we are returning to more folk laden plains with the next, it will still be dark but a lot more folk instruments within. Exciting times ahead!
Folkmetal.at: I really wonder about the composing process in your band. Do you compose mostly in teamwork or is it more the work of a single composer?
Stephen: Generally, when it comes to the songs, we all put our mark into it and put in ideas, but David and Fionn would be the main songwriters. All of our ideas and influences make Celtachor what it is, and it works surprisingly well when you have a huge pool of ideas from everyone. I work on the concepts, lyrics and some songwriting when the inspiration hits.
Folkmetal.at: From where do you get inspiration for your music?
Stephen: We each get inspiration from many different sources, from everything from doom to black metal and traditional Irish music and everything in between. I think the reason why the music and ideas work so well is due to us all having varying musical interests. When we pull it all together something really strong and epic comes out.
Folkmetal.at: How important is friendship for your band?
Stephen: For me it is absolutely paramount! When everyone is on the same wavelength it results in far more interesting music. Even though we have many different inspirations when we feel confident we know that we are on the right path for a particular story or part of a saga. It is a collective. Going ahead into our next work, I am already really excited about the direction we are going!
Folkmetal.at: What are your plans for the future? Do you go on tour?
Stephen: We tour and play gigs as often as we possibly can. We want to play in Europe and beyond as much as we can. Spreading our music and getting our message across. If there are any promoters reading this who would be interested in booking us, send us an email to email@example.com
Folkmetal.at: Tell me three things you think Irish and Swiss people have in common!
Stephen: Good drink, good food and great laughs/craic!
Folkmetal.at: Many thanks for the interview! I’m looking forward to our common show in Zurich!!!
Stephen: No problem, we are all looking forward to it ourselves! Thanks for the interview and a great hail to all our fans at home and abroad! Keep the fires burning!
Interview by firstname.lastname@example.org
Further Informations about Celtachor:
Official Homepage: Celtachor
CD-Review: „Nuada of the silver arm“