Interview with Tobias Fongelius (Voodus)
Hail my old friend/brother Tobbe, it has been a while since our last conversation, hope you are doing fine! Thanks so much for sending me the pre-listening stuff of the debut full-length Voodus-album, called “Into the Wild”, congratulations, excellent work! Tell to the readers please, when and where it will be released officially? Share all the important information about the circumstances of the recording process, lyrical-conception, guest-songwriters and cover-art.
- Hail! It´s great to hear from you again! Hope that everything works out fine with you.
Thank you very mutch! We are extremely proud of the album. It ended up being exactly as good as we wanted it to be! The album will be released by Shadow Records November 26. It will come in all formats! Double LP, CD,Tape and Digital!
The recording session was very intence. We had only 10 days to “make it happen”. And Ingo, our drummer, did get sick or something so we had to call for a stand in. Jocke Wallgren from Amon Amarth was just back from his world tour and he had a lot of time off, so he came down to the studio. He listened to the songs for about 5-6 hours. Then, like the fucking machine he is, he just went in to the recording room an fucking nailed the whole album! I think it took him about 2 days to record everything, and he had never heard the songs before! I am still stunned by his professionalism! The result of this drum-mess in the beginning of the recording did catch up on us in the end of the recording. Me and Erik had only 5 days to record all our guitars! And if you have in mind that every single guitar track must be recorded with 4 ( 2+2 ) guitars + a lead + solo! Man! Thats very tight with time! We worked like 12-13 hours everyday. We didnt have any time to do song or bass in Necromorbus because of this. So the bass is recorded in Armageddon Studio (Anders Backelin from Lord Belials studio). And the vocals in Studio Fabriken in Gothenburg.
Just like you mention we have two guestwriters on the album! A friend and magical inspiration of mine “Idlu Lili Regulus” did write the lyrics to “Communion amid the graves” and the fantastic Johannes Kvarnbrink (ex-Ofermod, Mortuus, Head of the Demon etc) did write the lyrics to our longest opus this far! The Terrain of Moloch, the last track of the album.
Let’s talk a little bit about Voodus: “Serpent Seducer Saviour” EP, which has been released through Swedish Shadow Records (distributed & marketed by Regain Records) in Summer, 2017. Enlighten us about the lyrics and songwriting processes.
- I guess that the lyrics speaks for themselves.. But we can speak a bit about the songwriting process! It´s quite easy for me and Erik to write together nowdays. We know each other so so well after all this years! I have a riff, Erik has a riff and then it´s just to go with the flow! I use to do the fundamental melodies, bridges and paths in our songs. And Erik lay his magic upon all this riffs, and then we have Voodus! It´s not always like this thou. Erik has for example written every single riff in the song The Golden, except for one passage, on our new album!
How was your Scandinavian tour with legendary Mayhem last year? Hope, we can see some live Voodus-video very soon from these hellish performances.
- It was a fucking blast! I mean wake up on the hotell and knew that tonight we will standing on the stage with fucking MAYHEM!!!!!! And tomorrow! And the day after that! Haha! All my respect to Mayhem. They are the real deal, I promise you. They give 666% every fucking night! It´s very inspiring to see and to be a part of! We did get along really good with the whole band, so we hold our thumbs for more rituals together!
I have listened to your debut material “NightQueen” EP under Voodus name a lot of times (my personal favourite tracks are “Mors Ianua Vitae” and “The Burning Light of Daath”). How were the reactions from the black metal fans after this release?
- Mutch better if you compare the reactions from our Jormundgand-era! We felt in a early phase that we were on the right track with this recreation of the band!
There’s a little change in the Voodus line-up. Desekrator debuted on bass at the Belsepub gig along with Grá the 1/6 in Gothenburg. How was this live-performance?
- Yeah! That was a great show!!! And Grá is a great band! As you said Desekrator did his first live performance with us that evening. He is a powerful individual who fits perfect in our band. We have done one more change in the line-up lately! We have a new drummer. Marcus Fors (ex-Vornth, Death Reich, XUL, Vulcanic etc etc) has now joined us instead of Ingo. He is a great drummer and contribute with a great deal of fierce fire and aggression to the bands energy!
Are you playing at your live-shows a few Jormundgand-tracks or just Voodus-songs?
- Just Voodus. Jormundgand is dead to us.
What is the situation with covering other, legendary bands? Do you plan to play live some covers or record them? I’m really curious, how it would sound a Dissection-cover for example by Voodus.
- We do never play covers, and we will probably never do. But yes, I can see what you mean! Dissection is absolutely a band that would have been great to pay our tribute to. But they have already done the songs 100% to the max, so the only thing you can do by trying to cover Dissection, is to disgrace yourself. I have never heard a good cover on Dissection this far at least.
Which bands/albums are you listening to currently? Could you maybe recommend some interesting bands from Sweden?
- Hmm… I do not listen to so mutch Swedish bands now days. I think that the German and the Greek scene is more interesting with bands like Ascension, The Ruins Of Beverast, Katharsis, Acrimonious, Thy Darkened Shade etc etc.
But you asked for Swedish bands! So i have to say Valkyrja, they are coming out with a new album very soon and i have heard a little bit from this beast to be unleashed! And man! That album will kick some serious fucking ass! Then we have the absolute amazing Funeral Mist and the new “Hekatomb” album! Mortuus is another band that I found very inspiring. Mephorash is recording a new album as well. I think it will be a fucking killer! And of course Voodus!
After the official release of Voodus: “Into the Wild” will you plan to play in Europe? It would be awesome to meet and see you live.
- Yes! We have the hooks out for a lot of festivals and promoters around Europe. We just have to wait and see I guess!
What landscapes, museums and places do you recommend to visit in Sweden?
- Västkusten (the westcoast) or the far north if you want to visit the nature. The westcoast of Sweden is loaded with pure magic! You can almost feel the breath of the old when you standing on a windy shore at this wild landscape! With lots of runes and petroglyphs carved in the rocks around the area, it contribute to this whole “sacred” feeling. If you want to visit museums then you have a great deal to choose between! But I guess that Stockholm is the city to visit if you want to learn more about our national history and our nations more palmy days!
Tack så mycket/Thanks a lot, brother, it was great feeling to talk you again. Hail and Total Support from us to Voodus! In the end send some thoughts from the “Communion Amid the Graves”…
- It is a monumental song, with a wide spectre. It´s one of the most intense tracks on the album. The lyrical theme is based on an ancient ritual of Hekate. And the song should be played with respect and devotion to HER in your mind!
Io Io Hekate!
Io Io Hekate!
Io Io Hekate!