Today we are honoured and privileged to speak with Sotiris Anunnaki, the guitarist/ clean vocalist of SEPTICFLESH, symphonic death metal giants from Athens, Greece. We spoke about the new album, record labels, recording among other things. Excerpt:
MJM. Hello guys, thank you for taking some time out and doing this interview with our magazine.
Sotiris- You are welcome.
MJM. To begin with, congratulations, on your release of yet another majestic album ‘Titan’ last year. How was the overall reception of the album?
Sotiris – Titan received very good responses from both metal fans and the media. It managed to be included to quite a few “albums of the year 2014” lists.
MJM. Tell us about the overall theme and concept of the album. Also shed some light on the album writing and recording process.
Sotiris – It was like creating a theatrical play with a multitude of “characters” involved. There were many layers to the music and the lyrics, while at the same time we tried to remain focused in order to make a homogenised result. The recordings were split to the band’s recordings that took place in Devasoundz studios at Athens and the recordings of the orchestra and children choir that took at Smecky studios at Prague for the convenience of the specific orchestra.
Considering the lyrics, although each song can stand out as separate story there are also elements that interlink songs in various ways. For example “Prometheus” is the Titan that provided the secret knowledge of fire to man and so it can be connected with “Burn” that is about the fire of knowledge. As for the main song “Titan”, it is a futuristic story where the human race terraforms the moon of Saturn, Titan. Besides the main body of lyrics, there is a prologue for each song on the inlay of the album, that can provide food for thoughts for those interested in diving deeper to the meaning.
MJM. How did you come up with the idea of using children’s choir in ‘Titan’?
Sotiris -We liked the result of using the vocals of a child for “The Vampire from Nazareth” in our previews album “The Great Mass”. So when we started composing material for “Titan”, we decided to push this experimentation to the next level, using a full children choir. The result is more majestic and cinematic.
MJM. Along with children’s choir, you also used a live orchestra for recording. What were the challenges you faced while recording the orchestra?
Sotiris– It was the 3rd time that we collaborated with the Filmharmonic orchestra of Prague, although this time there were a lot more instrument sections involved. The key is good preparation. Actually, Christos has a diploma in classical music composition, so he makes sure that everything will turn out as planned, considering this specific element in our music.
MJM. In one of your previous interviews, ‘Christos Antoniou‘ has stated that a Deluxe box consisting of live material of ‘Septicflesh’s 2011 tour with ‘Amon Amarth’ and ‘As I lay Dying’ will be released by ‘Season of Mist’. When is it expected to come out?
Sotiris– Indeed in the Deluxe box of “Titan”, among other exclusive staff, is included a bonus CD with recordings from the Live show in Toulouse France on October 29th of 2011. If you cannot find it in a near music shop, check out the Season of Mist e-shop.
MJM. You guys have a done numerous live shows and played with many great bands. Which can you say is one of your most memorable shows? Any show particularly where you played alongside some of your influences?
Sotiris- A lot of good memories from all those years of live shows. It wouldn’t be appropriate to make discrimination between the various bands that we had the opportunity to play with, as there were special moments in each tour, that we cherish in our heart.
MJM. It’s been 12 years since you released one of my favourite albums by Septicflesh, ‘Sumerian Daemons’! Share with us some memorable moments you had during writing and recording process of ‘Sumerian Daemons’.
Sotiris– The recordings took place in Sweden ,with Fredrik Nordström on the helm of the Production. We were actually living inside the studio, rarely going out, and recording almost 24/7. I remember that although it was summer time, we were extremely pale when we returned in Greece. Also some other trivia you might find interesting is that we gave actual Sumerian texts for the choir to sing. Also in the song “Unbeliever” we used a recorded passage from the horror movie ‘Evil Dead II’.
MJM. Your long time drummer ‘Fotis Benardo‘ left the band in 2014. What were the reasons for his departure?
Sotiris– It was a matter of having different priorities.
MJM. After Fotis’s departure, ‘Namtar’ from ‘Carach Angren’ filled in as a drummer for next gig. Also you did a show with Carach angren and Deicide. How was it ?
Sotiris– The tour with Deicide and Carach Angren was amazing. Also, we are very grateful to Namtar for his help on the drums for the show we did in December 2014 at Cyprus.
MJM. ‘Krimh’, who used to play for ‘Decapitated’ and ‘Behemoth’ is your new drummer. Tell us something about him.
Sotiris– He is a great talent and we are thrilled that we have joined forces. We can’t wait to start working together for the creation of the next album.
MJM. Speaking of gigs, are you guys planning on touring India sometime?
Sotiris– It would be great to visit India. We are open to proposals.
MJM. Any last words you would like to say to your fans?
Sotiris– Soon the video clip that we shot for the song “Prometheus”, will be unleashed on the internet, so keep an eye out!
MJM. Thanks a lot again for doing this interview with us!
Sotiris– Thank you too for the support. Horns Up!
Seth Siro Anton – Bass & Vocals
Christos Antoniou – Guitars & Orchestral
Sotiris Anunnaki V. – Guitars & Clean Vocals
Kerim “Krimh” Lechner – Drums & Percussion
Connect with the band-
Aumkar Lele (Metaljesus Magazine)