Interview with Insania.11
INTERVIEW WITH INSANIA.11
Your style is a rather technical death metal with some industrial elements, definitely a different combination and approach from classic death. How did the decision to adopt this genre come about?
(Ethrum) Honestly it wasn't a decision to play with this imprint, but an evolution of our metal influences. I like to play riffs with many notes, twisted, that require executive commitment. Fortunately, every now and then there is some quieter riff that let the hands to rest
(Samaang) More than a conscious decision it is the natural consequence of our way of writing riffs and structuring songs. Our riffs are born in a completely instinctive way, they are based on the typical typically thrash metal palm muting but structured on a double voicing. There is always, or almost always, a melodic line suspended on notes played in palm muting. This produces unusual rhythmic tempos. similar to those of Indian tablas scores. Maybe this is the origin of the “industrial flavour” you got into our music. the choices made in production for "blood and light" have enhanced this artificial, almost inhumane, aspect.
even if we are introducing more and more a death-oriented riffing, to us death metal (and black metal) are a reference mostly about mood, attitude and atmospheres.
Very few bands are original in your genre, why do you think bands don't go beyond the classic sound?
(Ethrum) If we start from the beginnings of thrash and death metal there have been several evolutions with some bands that have traced a groove, then followed by others, which in turn have brought further original evolutions. Each of us has our own favorite bands, with their sound, riffing, drumming, singing, which often influences our personal style. My opinion is that you have to play instinctively, influenced but without trying to follow others ... then maybe something different comes out.
(Samaang) I grew up musically in an era, the 80s, when metal was renewing its canons. each group born in those years had its own style that defined the development of sub-genres which then became more and more codified. As for the lack of originality, I believe that everything revolves around the fact of starting playing as a cover band: at the moment you start writing your own songs you’ll use the pattern of the groups that wrote the songs with which you learned to play. It’s a matter of language: you use the words you learned. As insania, we wrote our own songs from the very beginning (with the only exception of one cover version of "Angel of death" we used to play live). The spread of youtube tutorials, in particular concerning the guitar techniques, closed the circle of this homologation. At the contrary we are self-taught instrumentalists, so we have built our own personal relationship with the instrument. Which is also reflected in the way we compose.
Besides the imaginary horror world that your new album "L'Orrore" is linked to, what is the real horror?
(Samaang) Human life the way we experience it nowadays is the purest form of horror: we are confined in a state of sensory deprivation, a compulsive hallucination we are forced in. We are more like Haitian zombies than living beings.
In the dark social homologation in which we are living, can horror be the parallel universe to demonise society itself?
Often cultural imagery runs through and influences our way of thinking and perceiving reality. Your lyrics reflect classic horror, both literary and cinematic. Where do you get the lifeblood to write your lyrics?
(Samaang) Horror tales are a lucid analysis of the mainframe of reality: they depict in the purest form the basis of reality as we experience it. If I had to choose between two books that have influenced my way of understanding reality I would say “1984” by George Orwell and “The Bardo Thodol - The Tibetan Book of the Dead”.
"Winter", is a track that differs from the other five tracks, there is a touch of Doom, more 'organised' guitar riffs. In its simplicity it is still a standout track.
Is this differentiation from the other tracks intentional or is it a song born spontaneously, without looking for something that could surprise?
(Ethrum) It was born spontaneously. We found ourselves playing something much easier than usual ... we decided to continue exploring something unusual for us and we liked it. This is leading to new influences for the pieces we are composing for the next album
(Samaang) Both intentional and spontaneous. We are always looking for different solutions and variety, still staying true to ourselves. I like to listen to different genres of extreme metal and i get inspiration from them: it’s more about “what they express” than “how they do it”. It’s about “the mood” more than the “technique”.
About “Inverno” i should say that the arpeggios opening the track were born after repeated listening Moonsorrow’s masterpiece “V Hävitetty”. It was a true epiphany to me.
By writing this album, did you manage to understand the essence of existing in human form on this earth and the mechanisms that govern it? Did it help you in any way to get answers to your questions in a pragmatic way?
(Samaang) In a sense, i have more answers than questions about this theme. it would be better to say: there is one simple answer that can be told in many different ways. Every time i write a new lyric, it’s about the same concept. The same demon with a new mask.
What is the meaning of the artwork? What do the numbers refer to?
(Samaang) The artwork offers a reading key to the lyrics, which are written as hermetic poems. Alchemical allegories. Regarding the meaning of the numbers, number 11 is related to the eleven dimensions of existence of the multiverse. In “B nAural (the sons of fifth sun)” I refer to the Maya’s eras depicting the creation and destruction of the world. They called each cycle “sun”: the fifth sun is the last one, the era of final destruction. The era of hindu Kaliyuga and of the christian Apocalypse which is also called: Revelations. Because at the end all the lies will be cleared off.
Speaking of "Of Blood And Light", it is a concept about the character H.u.man. in a way, the concept of this EP is related to "The Horror".
ho is actually H.u.man? An earthling, an alien? A transposition of yourselves?
(Samaang) All the lyrics I write are related to the same theme. There are multiple levels of existence at a different vibration state. As humans, at now, we have experience of one of the lower levels. Maybe the lowest one. But it’s up to us: our very body is the key to change our vibrational state and step in the higher ones. We are both made of light and matter.
The horror we are forced in is the lack of transcendence: we live in Kaliyuga because the matter is the prison we built for ourselves. The god without senses, deaf and blind, we worship.
What can we expect in the future with Insania 11?
(Ethrum) Today we play for pure passion, with a lot of commitment. We have a lot of material for an upcoming album. We would simply like to be a little better known. We don't rule out adding other members to the band, but we don't have a strict need. In case they should really match to our mood. For many years we have been playing in two, each with their own personalities that then joined together
(Samaang) A new one is coming: the tracklist is almost completed. It will be really various: up tempos are very extreme but there will be also more mid and down tempos and a deeply prog influence. Everything will be, anyway, 100% insania.11.
If I’ll be consistent with my intent, lyrics will depict a concept inspired to the “The Garden of Earthly Delights” by Hieronymus Bosch. A nice trip (maybe: a bad trip) beyond human boundaries. It will be titled “Il Mondo aldilà” (the world beyond). Hopefully released by the end of 2021.
Would you like to add something special to end the interview?
(Ethrum) We thank you for the opportunity you have given us. We trust that your readers can listen to our works but above all they can appreciate them.
(Samaang) At first thank you for the intriguing questions. Hopefully answers will make sense despite of our bad english. Then a great thank you to the readers: hopefully you’ll give our music a chance to be a part of your listening time.