I had a pretty hard time categorizing your music. Most of the time I think I'm hearing black metal, but there's so much else going on there that it has quite a unique sound. Can you tell me a little bit about what styles you used?
I agree with that point. It wasn´t easy for me to categorize the genre of BIAW as well. Swedish melodic black metal was my favorite music genre in my adolescence. In every second bands like Dissection or Sacramentum dominated my cd-player. So although my music taste changed over the years, melodic black metal is an influence that got a steady part of my sound. Nowadays I love dirty simple music styles like Crust Core, Old School Death Metal or Industrial. I would say BIAW is a subtle mixture of all these styles. I also try to combine parts where it seems in the first moment that they don´t go together. Thereby I try to sound a little bit progressive but with catchy riffs.
Since this is a solo effort, I'm curious how the writing and the recording goes. I imagine in most bands the musicians complement each other to make a polished, final product, but you do everything yourself. Is that a conscious choice and if so, what's your reason to do things this way?
Yes, this way was a conscious decision I made back in 2006. The main reason for that was my social phobia. I played as a bassist in a Thrash Metal band from 2006 to 2008 and I hated it. The only possibility to go to the studio or rehearsal room was to drink alcohol before to stop my symptoms. Added to this I could not prevail my ideas because of my extreme shyness. Being a solo artist was the only possibility to be musically active and to realize my ideas. Since then I am active in various solo projects and was active in some bands but only as a session or studio member for a short time or for one album.
You are part of several musical projects as well as Buried In A Womb. Can you tell me your main reasons for writing and creating music in general?
At the beginning creating music was a kind of psychotherapy for me and helped me to dealing with my environment and my past. Now it became more functional and helps me to insure a psychic homeostasis. There are two persona in myself. The first one is a really boring guy who is neurotic and don´t want to take any chances. The second one is an artistic drug addictive nihilist who don´t give a fuck for everything. It´s important for me to have a balance between these two persons. Creating music is my way to keep the nihilist busy and give him a meaningful task which is constructive and not destructive. If I don´t do that he overpowers me in a quite perfidious way.
’Prenatal Suicide’ is a very personal album. The feeling that the album creates is very familiar to me. It's not a very cheerful topic that you're dealing with and yet it does have a positive vibe in my opinion. Can you tell me the point of view this album was written from and what it is about?
I tell a story from the perspective of an unborn child which has the ability to reflect the self as an adult. The fetus is aware that he will be born into a world without an existing objectified meaning of life. He understands that social inheritance exists and he is damned to inherit the scars of the parents. Social Inheritance is a phenomenon that extends over a lot of generations. He notices that everyone is determinate from the moment of procreation and how limited his freedom is. He is delivered to his reference persons which have the force to determine how he will being shaped. He can never trust his perception because of defense mechanisms that does not let him recognize the truth. The Protagonist is so afraid that he decides to commit prenatal suicide to use the only little part of freedom he still has. I do not know it myself, really or metaphorically. Maybe someday I´ll realize that. The hopeful part is that you have the opportunity to decide freely for the servitude.
I have no experience in writing music but I've always had the feeling that the environment and circumstances have a big influence on how and what musicians write. For instance, Judas Priest claims that the steel factories around where they grew up had a huge impact on their music. Did/do you have any such environmental influences?
Yes, I agree that environmental influences can be a big factor in the process of creating music. In my case I’m not sure if my music is heavily influenced by that. I grew up in a little town into a federal State with the worst infrastructure in whole Germany. There were not many opportunities for young people to keep oneself busy. We were forced to do something from our own drive and this was Heavy Metal.
Language is a very powerful thing. I sometimes notice when I'm writing or speaking English that certain Dutch words cannot be truly translated. The reason I say this is because one of the song titles on this album is in German ('Todesbewusstsein & Lebenstraum') and I want to know why you did this (since the rest is all English) and what these words mean to you.
Yes, you are absolutely right. I am a big lover of the German language. The strange thing is that I don’t like it if metal bands sing in German. For me as a German it sounds very cheesy in combination with metal. I use German words as song titles just because I like the pronouncing which is often martial and lovely at the same time. Todesbewusstsein is the awareness of being finite which we're denied by humans in many times. It´s important for the consciousness not to argue with the own finiteness constantly. It would make us unable to act. Lebenstraum is the chosen way we go in our lives, consciously and unconsciously. These are two words which belong together but don´t endure each other. It is very ironic how defense mechanisms save the integrity of man but make us look like fools behold from a meta-level. I wanted to emphasize that in this song.
A lot of songwriters base their lyrics on actual events and/or things they have experienced or are going through. A lot of it is fueled by emotions, and I notice that the best stories/lyrics often originate out of what most people would call negative emotions and experiences. The result is usually quite strong and beautiful. Can you tell me what experiences and/or emotions you based this album on?
My childhood and adolescents were characterized by fear, exclusion and the deep inner feeling to be unwanted in this society, the own family and the whole world. I was a dreamy and sensitive child who lived far only in the own fantasies. I was too strange for my teachers, my family members and especially other children. The feeling to be a stranger in this world was the main feeling that leads me to being a musician and it is the emotion which shaped the atmosphere on 'Prenatal Suicide'. On the other hand, my life is strange in some cases. My whole life I´m dealing with social phobia, depression, drug abuse and suicidality. Ironically, I´m working as an addiction therapist in a rehab clinic. Every day of my life is characterized by mental disorders and how to deal with them. So, this topic is an important influence on my lyrics as well. I use the word ironic often now but that is the point. If you hear so many life stories, you notice how ironic the life is and our way to live it. You see every day how close drama and comedy are together. I want to express that.
You're using the psuedonym Glasersfeld for this record. What's the reason you do this, and what is the name Glasersfeld based upon?
The name is an homage to the Radical Constructivism. Ernst von Glasersfeld was an important author for the development of this epistemology. He emphasized the unreliability of the human perception and the impossibility of making statements about an objective reality. In this way, the absoluteness demanding of every person and institution is doubted. I think this worldview is very inspiring, especially because they abolish oneself as a worldview by his theses. Besides, it sounds much better than Lord Raventhrone of Azaroth or some silly stuff, haha.
The name Buried In A Womb and the album name Prenatal Suicide are tied closely together. It seems as if you created the band/projectname solely to create this one album. Is that the case or can we expect more music under the name BIAW?
Currently, I´m working on new material for the second album. The working title is 'Nihilized Punk'. I look forward to record the album this year. It´s more Crust Core oriented but still very melodic and fast. Also the production should be more raw and dirty. It´s possible that the people who liked 'Prenatal Suicide' have some problems with 'Nihilized Punk' because the songs aren´t so melancholic and earnest. The main topic is about radical epistemologies. As example the Radical Constructivism which is quite "Punk" in my opinion. But your first thought was right, at the beginning BIAW should become a one album thing. Now I like the style so much, that I want to record some more albums in the future.
And finally, on a related note, is there a chance of you performing live as Buried In A Womb?
No, I want to run the band only as a studio project. It is also a matter of time. I think I couldn´t arrange my music and my job if I run BIAW with a line-up and play shows.