LEVIATHAN interview about The Aeons Torn
“Actually the whole material of "The Aeons Torn" was written as one song. We wrote all the music in one line and also recorded the songs as one.”
As far as I know, the new masterpiece “The Aeons Torn ~ Beyond The Gates Of Imagination pt.2” is held high in the media’s estimation so far. So, congratulations! Did you get a lot of positive feedbacks about the album from your fans as well?
Tobi: Well the media's reviews were luckily overall very good, even though we also got a few rather bad reviews. But that was something that we expected from the very beginning when we started to record the new album. It's probably also just natural with all the influences that we have used on this record that some might be unusual to people, but we wanted to take this risk in order to full-fill the musical vision that we had for the album.
As far as the fans the reactions have been very good so far. We have never had such an amount of preorders even long before the record was actually released.
From the aspects of both lyrical side and musical side, I feel “The Aeons Torn” is more focused to inner adventures than the previous “part I” for its image. I mean the lyrical side in “part I” was a kind of metaphor of some negative sides of the real world, right? Can you explain the global concept of “The Aeons Torn” and each of the songs?
Tobi: That is absolutely right. "Part 1" was a lot more about our current problems in the world, "Part 2" now actually takes a look to where our decisions are actually based. And that clearly are our emotions, they are what drives us and what makes us take the road that we are on.
And therefore we took a set of 19 emotions or rather human motives that make up the whole themes of the songs. The lyrics are even little riddles describing the emotion that is currently reflected in the music. As far as the single songs, we just split up the emotions and put together what we thought would fit together.
The Crescent Moon: This song actually deals with uprising human motives like "Hope" and "Courage".
The Rising Darkness: As the title hints we have gathered all the emotions in this part that lead towards a dark path. Like "Hate" or "Loneliness". That is also very much reflected in the dark und rough music of this song.
The Sacred Fire: For this song we took all the emotions that drive us or to make the connection to the metaphor in the title that keep our inner fire burning. These for us where motives like "Love", "Pain" and "Reason".
The Restless Wind: In this song we deal with some motives that endanger the connection to other humans. For example "Discover" or "Diremption". We are today discovering new dimensions especially in case of technology, but this also bears a lot of danger to distract us from what actually means being human. So rather have contact to other humans instead of spending your time in front of a computer.
Elysium: As the title suggest, this song describes the final goal that probably everybody of us has. A state of "Freedom", "Peace" and "Harmony". That is also something we tried to reflect in the very gentle music of this song.
It was a nice surprise to hear some major-code tunes in the album –“The Sacred Fire” and “The Restless Wind” in a row. It sounds like one song as a large-scale of work. Why did you divide them in two?
Tobi: Actually the whole material of "The Aeons Torn" was written as one song. We wrote all the music in one line and also recorded the songs as one. In the end we decided that we wanted to give the people the chance to skip to a certain passage of the song, instead of having to listen to 20 minutes until you reach the part you were looking for. That's the main reason why we divided the album into five songs. But it was very important to us that you have this connection between all the songs when you listen to the album start to finish, rather than feeling like you're listening to 5 different songs.
I feel you expanded a folkish / acoustic elements plus clean vocals on the album. Was it a natural evolution for the band?
Tobi: It's mainly not the natural development of the band and I would also not say that it's the direction that the next album will go for. It just came along with the conceptual approach of the album. If you're trying to create the fitting musical feeling or atmosphere for an motive like "Peace" or "Freedom" you just can't accomplish that with Death Metal, so it just felt natural to go into the direction that the concept took us. As far as the next record, we are currently working on the basic ideas for the concept and as it looks right now the next album will be a lot darker and heavier again.
There’s no doubt that every Leviathan fan feel happy to find all songs from the past fabulous EP “From The Desolate Inside” in the new album as re-mastered versions! How did you get the idea to put those songs in the album?
Tobi: We have been playing with the idea of remixing and re-mastering the "From The Desolate Inside" EP for a long time. Back in 2010 when we recorded it we didn't have the experience or the budget to record the EP in the way we wanted it to be. But the songs still are all very dear to us and a fixed piece of our live-setlist. Originally we had the idea to re-release the EP seperately from "The Aeons Torn", but at that point our past distributor Twilight went into insolvency and gave us a very hard time especially in a financial sense. For a long time it was even a question if we would be able to release the new album, so in the end we had to merge both releases into one in order to be able to put both releases out.
The whole album artworks are brilliant! You guys managed it entirely by yourself again, right? What does the cover art represent?
Tobi: Yes, the artwork was again done by our incredible bass-player Tom, who did all the editing and drawing for the album. As far as the cover-art we wanted it to represent the story of the lyrics. The pentagram is a symbol for the five songs that "The Aeons Torn" consists of and inside the circle around the pentagram there is a symbol for each an every of the 19 emotions or human motives that the lyrics deal with. In the end we decided to put a human figure into the center of the circle and the pentagram as a metaphor for how we are all influenced by our emotions and motives. So basically the cover-art fully represents the lyrical content of the album.
Can you explain those artworks inside the booklet as well?
Tobi: For the illustrations inside the booklet we though well we have five songs and we have five band members, so why not let every member represent one of the songs. And that is exactly what we did, for each member we tried to capture the mood and the atmosphere of the song that he represents and designed the illustration according to that. Even the symbols that you can see on the cover for each of the motives are also placed in the pictures. So actually the whole artwork is very closely connected to the conceptual background of the album.
Well, I guess it’s not so easy to keep going as a band, I mean you didn’t lose any piece of the current members since you released the first EP. What is the secret of your success as a united team?
Tobi: That is a part of our history in which we have been very very lucky. But I guess it is because alongside the band also our friendship developed a lot more with each live-show or each week we spent in the recording studio together. On the other hand I think that a main reason for the stability in our line-up is the fact that everybody is able to bring it's creativity into the band. Be it Jonas as the main songwriter or Tom as the creator of the artwork, each member can give his input into the songs and identify with the music. I think that is a really important part.
Can you tell me your upcoming plans about gigs and so on?
Tobi: Well first of all we plan on touring as much as possible with the new album. Another thing on our agenda is the release of the second single of the current album which will be out very soon. And after that our view slowly moves towards the next record. We already have collected some musical ideas and in addition we have the main points of the concept figured out, so sooner or later we will start working on the new material more intensively.
I would love you to leave some message to Japanese fans, please.
Tobi: First of all we'd like to thank each and every Japanese Fan for the support we have been receiving in the past month. We haven't had such an amount of orders from any other country. In a way Japan still is a last stand for real music-fans, who support the bands by buying their albums instead of rather downloading it. And we'd like to thank you Kumi for all your support for us in the past 4 years, you've been around for us since our very first release and that is something that we are immensely thankful for!
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Leviathan - The Aeons Torn - Beyond The Gates Of Imagination Pt. 2 - Teaser
Leviathan - When Only Despair Remains (Remixed & Remastered)