Interview with Arie vocalist of Hellsaw by Patrick late May 2012Ö

Austria's Hellsaw are back with a vengeance! Their new album Trist is nine songs of classic black metal done the way the it was originally meant to sound. The music is dark, cold and vicious. the guitarist plays at whirlwind speeds but they also slow it down a bit to keep the music interesting, the drumming is perfection whether being blasts or slowed to a more controlled mid-paced speed. The music of Hellsaw ripped into me such viciousness that I felt compelled to contact them....



Hails Aries! Thank you for taking the time to fill out this interview with me. Please introduce yourself to the readers?

Iím Aries, one of the original founders and the frontman of Austrian Black Metallers Hellsaw.

When did you and the other members of Hellsaw first meet? Was it long until you formed the band? What is the "current" line-up? For the readers who have never heard the band how would you describe Hellsaw's music?

It feels like weíve all known each other an eternity in one way or another. The band itself was actually formed in the summer of 2002 by myself and our then-drummer Svart, so weíre coming up to our tenth anniversary. The majority of the current line up has been together for several years. Apart from myself on vocals, thereís Isiul and Malthus on guitars, Desderoth on bass, and our new drummer, Neuroticon, joined us in time to start recording ďTristĒ. Our music is essentially black metal, but we bring to it our own interpretation and emotions, so it could never be mistaken for anything but Hellsaw.

The bands newest cd "Trist" was recently released through Napalm Records. How long did it take you all to write and record the songs for this release? Does the whole band take part in writing process or does 1-2 members handle everything?

I couldnít actually say exactly how long it took, because we donít sit down and write an album in one go. I am the main writer, but all the members take an active part, whether itís writing a track, or a riff, or interpreting what someone else has written. Our tracks are quite varied because we write when we are inspired to write, so what we are feeling when we write one track will be totally different to what we are feeling when we write another, and this will be reflected in the piece. It would be impossible for us to write just for the sake of writing - there has to be emotion behind what we do. Obviously when we enter the studio we are on a schedule, but the songs have been written by then. This time we recorded the whole album ďliveĒ. Itís a much harder way of doing things because you canít make mistakes, but the end result is worth the effort.

Trist is the band's fourth release, how do you feel the bands music has changed if at all?

Of course the music has changed. It would be a sad state of affairs if it hadnít after all these years. Weíve all grown as individuals and musicians, and we have always brought our life experiences and all that we have learned musically to each album. We have continued to grow and develop Hellsawís sound and we will continue to do so. We are not a band that is happy to sit back and release the same album again and again.

Does the band have any upcoming shows, tours in support of Trist? If yes where are some countries or places you will be playing?

Weíve just done a tour of Russia, and we will be playing several festivals in Europe over the summer, then in the Autumn we will be embarking on a tour which will take us to countries like Germany, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Netherlands.

who are some bands you have toured with in the past? if you could set-up a "dream" show/tour who are some bands you would love to tour with?

Weíve toured with lots of bands over the past ten years, and we are often asked who we would like to tour with and what our dream show would be, but to be honest, the important thing for us is not who we tour with, but how good a show we ourselves give. Our whole focus is on giving the best of ourselves to our audience, and we donít let anything distract us from that.

Everyone has their own opinions, ideas on what black metal means, so I was wondering what does "black metal" mean to you?

Iím not really into all this over-analysis of what Black Metal is and isnít. Itís the music that inspired me to become a musician in the first place. It touches something inside me and it allows me to give voice to my feelings, to express how I see the world and how I interpret events, all of which are affected by the negativity within me.

The band comes out of the Austrian metal underground. What is your opinion of Austria's metal scene?

There are definitely some good bands coming out of Austria at the moment, as there have always been. But I think itís a mistake to restrict bands to a particular scene. They are either good bands or bad bands, regardless of which scene they originate from.

Coming back to the band for a moment you handle the vocals for the band, when did you first start singing? Do you do anything special to keep your throat/voice healthy?

Iíve been singing for over 10 years now, and I donít have a strict regime for my voice. I just need to make sure that I practice fairly regularly so that Iím always stage-ready, and if we are due to be on tour, then Iím careful not to strain my voice too much beforehand. As Iím sure you realise, itís a style of singing that puts a lot of strain on your throat and vocal chords.

Well Aries we have reached the end of the interview, do you have any final comments for the readers?

Thanks for taking the time to interview us, and we hope that we will have the opportunity to meet you and your readers on the road sometime.



The Hellsaw Discography 

SIns of Might Demo, 2003

Spiritual Twilight Full Length, 2005

Split 7" EP w/ Varvulv, 2006

Phantasm Full Length, 2007

Cold Full-length, 2009

Trist, 2012



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