And once again we return to Finland. This time bringing you a huge interview with the brutal and majestic Black Metal horde CHAMBER OF UNLIGHT…
Chamber of Unlight is a new band. Tell us a little about its origin, about the name and when it became an active band.
Well, Chamber of Unlight has existed more than 10 years now, actually you can go back as far as 1996. Of course it was under a different name back then but some of the material on the album is from that time. I started by doing everything by my self, but when LRH agreed to step in on drums I was very pleased. This dude is a Beast! The two of us did the first demo and soon after that I asked the other members to join and they did. The name represents an actual place and also a place within me.
Is it still possible to get the demo tape “Chamber of Unlight”? Tell us about how it was recorded and how different it is from the debut album.
There were only 150 copies made on casette only and it was sold out rather quick, so it might be difficult to get that one. I had the whole thing ready for years but I never really was in any hurry to release it. I was talking to Molestor Kadotus from spread evil one day and he said that he was willing to release it. And so he did. The guitars, bass and vocals were all done in a small studio owned by a friend of mine. LRH recorded the drums in a other studio in the same sessions while he recorded the Forgotten Horror album. All the songs of the demo are on the Realm of the Night, but they have all changed more or less.
You signed with Werewolf Record from Lauri Penttilä. What is it like to work with him? He has a lot of big bands in his cast like Goatmoon, for example.
I have known Lauri for years, so it it really easy to work with him. We share the same view of what Black Metal is, what it represents and what it should sound like.
What are the main lyrical themes in Chamber Of Unlight music?
They are channeling the Satanic views that I bear inside. Some are more straight forward, others are presented in metaphors.
Chamber of Unlight has 5 members. So you (Necrosis) have been playing guitar and bass until now or VnoM and Infection have defined their role in the band? Did they join the band after the recording of the debut album?
VnoM and Infection had already agreed to join as live members before the recordings started, but it was easier to do this album with the three of us, me LRH and Leper that is. Actually Leper joined in during the sessions. He was originally supposed just to work as a engineer, but as I realised how well we got along and noticed his skills as a guitar player I asked him to join. The plan is that the next album will be recorded with this full line up. And we also have Spellgoth playing keyboards now.
Have you and Kassara worked together before Chamber Of Unlight?
Yes, me and Kassara a.k.a LRH have known each other for over 20 years now. We have played together in Deathchain all this time and have done shitloads of live shows together. As I mentioned before we do have one hell of a line up now.
So four years later, CHAMBER OF UNLIGHT revealed their stand-to-attention debut full-length, “Realm of the Night”. Tell us a little about this release.
A lot has been already been said in the earlier answers, but it was recorded by me, Leper and LRH. The strings and vocals we did with Leper at his small studio and LRH did the drums at his rehearsal space. The songs were ready for a long time and it was easy proscess really. 7 unholy hyms for the glory of Lucifer. I wanted to bring back the feeling I had when I first heard Black Metal in the beginnig of the 90’s.
The synth work is subtle but mesmerizing, giving a grand (and diabolical) aspect to Chamber Of Unlight. It is raw, but has this kind of synth that is there at the corner and gives a horror movie atmosphere. How did you balance this mix? Because it doesn’t sound predictable. Sometimes it shows up and brings a cold atmosphere to the song.
An old friend of mine named Øld, from my hometown did the synth. He is a real wizard creating this kind of atmosphere. I gave the basic ideas to him and we managed to create this dark feeling as you mentioned. Also you have to give credit to Trollhorn who mixed the whole thing. The idea was to keep the synt in the background but also to create this eerie atmosphere.
For me the album “Realm of the Night” could have been recorded in the 90’s. Have a 90’s atmosphere been the idea since the beginning? Do you agree that there is some modernity in your music?
Growing up in that golden era of Black Metal I think this is the way it should sound. Lots of atmosphere and feeling. Of course there are some modern elements there. I’m not forcing anything when I create music. This is just how it comes out.
The Black Metal in the debut album has much from the 90’s as we said before . Chamber Of Unlight has a nervous, aggressive and heavy Black Metal. Icy and cohesive. Which elements from your music do you consider taken from the “Finnish Black Metal” style?
I think that all the Finnish bands have their own unique sound, but the same melancolic base can be heard. It comes naturally for us. It is the surroundings here. The woods, dark long winters and so on. I can’t really say that I have taken anything, but the feeling is there.
And talking about “Finnish Black Metal”, what makes it so different from the Norwegian Black Metal, for example?
Hmm… I think Finnish Black Metal is rawer and more barbaric in a way. I have to say that I really like Norwegian Black Metal too. Definately many of my favourite albums are Norwegian. I think it has a bit more atmosphere to it. Then again Finnish style is more aggressive. I think I have managed to combine both in Chamber of Unlight.
Which are your favorite Black Metal albums from all time? And which bands have you been listening to nowadays?
In the Nightside Eclipse by Emperor, De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas by Mayhem, The Black trilogy by Darkthrone, Tol Cormpt Norz Norz Norz by Impaled Nazarene, Drawing down the moon by Beherit, Storm of the lights bane by Dissectkon, The first three Satyricon albums, Opus nocturne by Marduk, Secrets of the Black arts by Dark Funeral, Scarlet evil witching black by Necromantia, the first Bathory albums, the early Burzum albums… the list goes on. Let’s just say 90’s Black Metal in general, because I propably forgot something important here anyways. I still listen to these on regular basis.
What are the plans after this release? Have you guys been invited to some concerts?
We just did a show in Steelhordes and are doing another one in Steelfest 2022. As soon as this covid shit is under control there will be more live shows. I have also started to write new material for the second album.
Which bands would you like to share a Festival with?
Bands that perform their art with full dedication and give a great live show. Steelfest 2022 was a good examble of a great line up, but I don’t know what the hell is going on with that fest right now… but if you want some names lets say Marduk, Behexen, Watain, Mayhem, Archgoat, Horna always deliver a good show, just to mention a few. Often it’s just the atmosphere and feeling of the festival that gives you good vibes so in many cases you might miss a lot of the bands anyway…
Are you a Black Metal collector? Do you buy merch? Which bands have you collected albums or t-shirts?
Yes, I am a collector and I buy merch. I have quite massive vinyl collection and shitloads of CDs too. Too many bands to mention.
I asked you this because nowadays with online platforms like Spotify. Many people are “collecting” music online. Do you think it’s a good thing or an evolution?
I’ll put it this way. What will these people listen to when their precious internet goes to shit? But on the other hand I use spotify myself sometimes. Mostly with headphones when I’m taking a hike etc. I mean, I have nothing against it. I just don’t find it collecting at all. It’s a nice tool to have though.
How would you define Black Metal to our readers? Which bands in your opinion represent the essence of what black metal should be?
Powerful, atmospheric, spiritual and Satanic. Horna, Behexen and Watain are some good examples. These are the present day torch bearers. Back in 90’s I’d say Emperor made a huge impact on me with their s/t mini album and of course In the nightside eclipse. On their later days they have abandoned that essence, but back in the day it qualified all those things mentioned above. Marduk is also one of the bands that has kept the spirit going through out their career.
Time has passed. People have changed. But we are seeing that people are consuming tapes, vinyl and magazines. Do you think that is it possible to bring the OLD CVLT “Old School” Black Metallers back again?
I think it hasn’t never really died among the people who are into it. Of course nowadays the aspect of mystic is pretty much gone as you can get all the info you want with just a few clicks. But the true esence of Black metal has never died.
Besides Finnish Black Metal, which bands from around the world have you listened to? Anything from South America?
I already mentioned quite a few earlier. From South America Krisiun, I’ve actually been on tour with these guys. Had really good time with them. Sarcofago, of course. Mystifier and Goat Semen come to mind. You got lot’s of good bands there.
Since the demo tape, have you received any invitations for a split album? What happened to Chamber of Unlight between the demotape and the debut?
No split invitations have been presented. Nothing special happened really. Most of the songs were ready, so I just gavs them in their final form. The biggest thing was to get a full line up and start rehearsing for live shows.
Which elements inspire you to make music? Because you have a lot of projects. “How do you divide” your mind when you are working in “Chaosweaver” and you play or sing something that would suit “Chamber Of Unlight” style, for example. Do you bring different elements to Chamber Of Unlight or do you keep every project locked away from each other?
At the time being I have two active projects. Chamber of Unlight is so personal to me that I definately do it with full heart and nothing can interfere that. I write only for Chamber of Unlight now. What comes to Chaosweaver, I am not involved with that in any way. Never did any music for them either. I was actually recording some pre-Chamber stuff at the studio of CWs drummer when they asked me to do some vocals. As the drummer is a friend if mine I accepted. The Chamber demo is actually recorded at his studio. Anyway, I had good time doing that stuf, but it never was my cup of tea. I think the whole band has split up.
What message would you like to give with your music? And who do you expect to achieve with it?
Search what can be found beyond what you see and feel. There are things there than cannot be reached by feeble minds. A great source of strength.
After the new album, do you have any pressure to record another one or to tour? Is there any pressure from Werewolf Records about this?
Hahah, no pressure what so ever. We like to tour as much as possible of course but at this time it is not possible because of the fucking virus. But what comes to Werewolf, it’s not your typical label that give you deadlines and all that shit. I’d say it’s all done the way the artists want. And that is the reason it is also the best label possible for Chamber of Unlight.
What we could expect from Chamber Of Unlight in 2022? Anything you could reveal?
Live shows and writing the second album. We are also planning to release something…
Do you think Black Metal is a weapon against the “Modern World”? Do you think we are experiencing a degeneration of civilization in general?
The ignorance of many cannot diminish the wisdom of the few. Black Metal is a weapon against religions that are the plague of this world. The world is going towards its downfall because every fucking moron can now get their voices heard and the sheep follow.
Please, feel free to send a message to our readers. Some of them are learning about Chamber Of Unlight through this interview.
Check out the album Realm of the Night. The whole album can be found from youtube on Werewolfs channel. Listen to it and if you like it, order it! Cd is out now and the vinyl is coming out soon. Hopefully we can come on tour to South America some day.
In nomine Lucifer.