The emotional journey of Hellsaw

After departing from their previous band Sangius singer Aries and drummer Svart wasted no time forming their own band Hellsaw. In 2007 the band made their mark on the Flesh For Satan Tour as support for Inquistion. With some live appearances under their belt they caught the attention of Napalm Records and signed. The band went into the studio with Dark Fortress mainman V Satura to record their Napalm debut "Cold". Hellsaw plays cold, hateful forboding black metal. One listen to "Cold" you know what I mean. Now the band is back to more chills down on spine with "Trist". Which we see the band growing and maturing as musicians and songwriters. I recently caught with singer/founder of Hellsaw Aries which give me and the readers a view of the dark cold world of Hellsaw.

Greetings brother, I hope all is well with you so far?
Thank you, everything is excellent.

To get some of the people up to speed can you give a little backstory of the band and how long Hellsaw been together?
Hellsaw was founded by myself and our then-drummer back in 2002. The current line up which consists of myself on vocals, Malthus and Isiul on guitars and Desderoth on bass has been together for several years, whilst our new drummer Neuroticon joined in time to record the new album.

When is the expected release date of "Trist" and how does this album different from "Cold"?
It’s already been released actually, both in CD and vinyl versions, and hopefully you’ve had a chance to listen to it now. The main point to bear in mind about this album is that it was actually recorded live in the studio, which is a much more difficult way of doing things, as you have to get everything right in one take, but we think it’s worth it for the immediacy and atmosphere it gives.

Why did it took so long to put new material together for this album?
Partly because like most bands these days we don’t earn a living from our music, so we also have to work at our day jobs and all the other commitments we have. But mostly because I personally don’t sit down and write an album for the sake of writing it or to meet some kind of schedule. It’s an emotional journey for me, so I have to create what I feel like creating, when I feel like creating it.

The band has been playing shows around Europe. When will the band finally have the opportunity to play 
the States?
Playing in the US is a big ambition, probably for most European bands but it’s quite difficult to get there. The expense for one thing is prohibitive, and of course, the US scene is quite conservative and they only bring over the massive bands, which is a real shame because we are constantly getting mail from US fans asking us to come over.

Can you give a little story about some of the songs on the album? When did you started writing the lyrics for the new 
As I said earlier, writing is a personal thing for me, so I could be writing about something I’ve experienced, or seen, or an historical event. Anything really that interests me, and the writing is really my reaction to it or how it has affected me. For instance “Beldame” deals with the persecution of witches in ancient times.

Can you tell how well the response been to "Cold" in the USA and has the band established somewhat of a fanbase
in the States?
The response has been great and we have an ever-growing fan base over there. There is a great hunger in the US for good Black Metal bands from Europe and fans can’t understand why there aren’t more touring. We hear time and again that they get to see the same handful of bands, but what they really want is a bit more choice.

Do you the feel the band matured alot as musicians and songwriters?
Yes absolutely. It would be disastrous if we hadn’t. Life’s experiences have changed and matured us as individuals, and ten years of writing and playing experience has matured us as musicians. It’s important to develop and grow otherwise you just stagnate and keep regurgitating the same old album with the same old sound and nobody should want to do that.

Please explain the concept of the album title and the inspiration behind it?
“Trist” is a German word that has meanings of melancholy and sadness and remorse, which is something that appealed to me, since all my writing explores the negativity of life and comes from the negativity within myself. It’s from the negative that I draw my inspiration, not from the positive at all.

On this album seem like the band pick up the pace a little in short this album. Is little more faster but there are
times you guys slowed it down a little?
It’s not a conscious decision at all, in that we didn’t set out to speed up or slow down or anything else come to that. It’s what came from within us at the time of writing and what worked best for any particular subject or emotion.

Have the band played any of the new material live and what have the reaction been so far?
Indeed we’ve been playing the new material live for some time, even before the album was released, and the reaction has been very positive. Everyone seems to like what they’ve heard.

How would you describe your relationship with Napalm so far?
It’s a very good relationship. We understand what they need from us, and they understand how important it is to give a band freedom to create what it wants to create and be what it wants to be. They are very supportive of everything we do.

I like to thank you for taking the time to do the interview. Is there anything you like to add?
Hopefully we’ll be able to meet up with some of your readers in person. We’ll be playing festivals over the summer and we will be hitting the road on tour in November, and you can find all the details on our Facebook page.
Interviewer: Paul Lewis
May 15, 2012

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