Norse (Australia) have redefined extreme music with their scathing new release Ascetic. It is bleak, compelling, and aggressive in its musical chaos created as weapon. Ascetic is the natural progression from their last album The Divine Light of a new Sun as Forge explains.
‘’The sound and the writing style have evolved, and I’d call it refined now, a bit less chaotic, even though there are still very chaotic parts in the new album. I feel more in control of what I’m writing and have more of an end goal in sigh t. More focused, more refined and being able to execute what I hear in my head this time around. That also applies to the production on the album, better know how studio and audio engineering this time around.’’
The approach to extreme music has changed.
‘’I find that you don’t need chaos and a million bpm blast beats and shredding the whole time to create the atmosphere that I’m after, sometimes less is more, and you leave space in the music. Its like artists, they won’t draw every single line in the picture and its up to the viewer to join the lines up. It’s the same with music, you can leave stuff out and let the listeners imagination join everything together. I don’t feel that I have to cram a million different ideas into music or the songs these days, having a bit of space and dynamics is always a good thing’’
The constant quest to push the boundaries of music.
“I just don’t want to bore myself. I think if I’m writing something that sounds like something else, why am I wiring that you know? Am I just doing that to feel good about myself coz this riff sounds like Mayhem, or this riff sounds like Vader or something? I’ll delete tonnes of stuff if I think its just run of the mill. I want to be on the very edges and fringes of extreme music and really explore areas that haven’t really been explored before. It’s just a matter of making music that’s interesting to me and making music that I would actually want to listen to I think.’’
The undercurrent of darkness throughout the record?
“Look as far as central theme and darkness I just feel like it should resonate with me and if it doesn’t really sit with me, then it’s like why don’t I connect with this music and stuff that I’m writing? It has a certain framework that I work within or write within and strangely enough its dark apparently ha-ha.
‘’It is just what comes out of me., I don’t believe in forcing it, whatever comes out comes out and we roll with that”
“I don’t like to question it too much or over analyse it too much, I think if you do that you can end up chasing your tail and go around in circles. I Believe first impressions are most important and whatever comes out and I record is the purest and best form of what I can make ‘’
Where does this come from?
“’I’m not sure actually. Its probably a subconscious release for me. To have an outlet like this that is just dark and chaotic and aggressive, and that lets me live a normal life ‘’
The things that inspire Norse lyrically.
“Without going too far into ADR’s ideas and realms. Basically, it’s the extremities of humanity. ADR worked as a driver and security guard for mobile doctors in Sydney Australia. He was seeing the most awful chaotic drug dens on medical visits and then going to the other side of Sydney and seeing billionaires’ mansions in the same day. Being able to see the huge, huge difference between the living styles of people not even twenty kilometres apart is a real wake up call. There is plenty of inspiration there for lyrics ‘’
Being labelled as black metal?
I don’t really call Norse black metal; I don’t think there’s any elements really of black metal in Norse. I mean the last album has nearly no gain on the guitars which is the cardinal sin of black metal Ha-ha! there’s some clean singing, there’s some drop A riffs, it’s like what my friend Tim Pope from the Amenta always says;” It’s just Extreme Music”” I’m not limited by genres and styles because they are pretty much meaningless’’
What drew you to extreme music?
“It was always s the musical side of it. The quest to be the best you can at something, pushing the boundaries and working harder and harder to be the best you can. That has lapsed over into life for me to be the best you can be, obviously there’s that dark element and visceral side to it is appealing for some reason, I think it’s just night and day to most people’s normal life, so it’s a bit exciting and interesting.’’
The intent of Norse?
“’Just a creative outlet for me, to write whatever I want, record whatever I want, the fact that people listen to it and appreciate it is still confusing to me. Its just noise that I make, and people seem to like it. Who am I to Judge?
The nature of man and our quest to destroy everything?
“Yup that’s pretty shit of us, and we are pretty good at it”
Do your other musical projects delay Norse or is it organic when it's time to create?
“Yes so, I work full time as a session drummer, making tracks for bands and sending them off all over the world. so, trying to fit in Norse stuff around it, technically it should be an issue but once I’m inspired, I will just stay up all night, all of The Divine Light of a New Sun. was written and recorded around 2am in the morning until six, and then I’d go home and have some breakfast and go to work for the day. When I’m inspired nothing gets in my way, nothing, no sleep no food, it will just happen and then ill wake up out of the creative coma and go back to normal life.’’
Plans for the future
No plans for the future. Maybe some shows, touring is impossible at the moment, I’m not phased either way about the live front, I enjoy the studio process, the writing, the mixing. Shows are great as well, but they are a lot of work and a lot of time which I don’t have these days. When the mood strikes, I will create more Norse and write, and it just happens
Top albums of all time
Mayhem- Wolfs Lair Abyss
Emperor – Anthems to the Welkin Kind
Pig Destroyer – Terrifier
Morbid Angel – Formulas Fatal to the flesh