Interview: I chat with Teo from Chiral

Posted: February 17, 2015 in Interviews
Tags: , , , , ,

Chiral became a great discovery for me last year. I really got into their Abisso demo thanks to Steve at Sixsixsix Music recommending it to me, and have since followed them very closely. Mainman Teo has graciously answered some of my questions about the band, metal in general and the Italian scene.

Hi Teo, thanks for doing this for me!

Hey Sandy, it’s a pleasure to be interviewed by you.

What’s your history in the metal scene? Which bands got you really interested?

Oh, I see we start nicely. That’s the first time that someone asks me these questions.
So, if I can say that I have a real history in the metal scene probably everything started the first time I listened to Opeth’s ‘Master’s Apprentices’. It was probably 2006, when I was 15. At that time I had never heard nothing like growls and double kick drums. I was definitely struck by them. And after that my interest in extreme metal music grew exponentially…and is still growing impressively, and it probably won’t never stop!

So I said Opeth caught me at the very beginning. But other bands that helped me get inside the extreme metal world were: Shape of Despair, Cynic, Death, Bloodbath and The Black Dahlia Murder.

Where did the genesis for Chiral come from?

I started with Chiral in February 2014 when I released my demo “Winter Eternal”. All the tracks in the demo were recorded between October and December 2013, but at that time I wasn’t sure what I was gonna do with these recordings, not yet. And the name takes inspiration from the TV series “Breaking Bad”.

What is the main lyrical and musical inspirations behind Chiral?

Lyrically I’m inspired mostly by my life, my fears and my thoughts. Musically I’ve wide inspirations. They go from classic Swedish death metal to atmospheric black metal, from electronic music to fusion. But my major influences probably are Opeth, Wolves In The Throne Room, The Pat Metheny Group, Dissection and Porcupine Tree (early years).

You’re a one man project, does that make life easier or harder as a recording artist?
Well, of course it could be harder when you have to record each and every part on your own. But you know what, I’m happy this way because I have the ultimate freedom to work over my music. And if I do something good it’s my credit, but in the case I do shitty things well, there’s no one to blame but me.

I’ve been a big fan of yours since your Abisso demo came out, has your songwriting methods changed since your original demo? It’s a lot different from your 20 minute track from your HaatE split?

I won’t say that my songwriting method has changed. You know, I don’t have a precise “modus operandi”, I like working in different ways each time.
For example, Abisso was written and recorded entirely before I got any lyrics. All the music were already stuck into my brain, and when it came to record the instruments I knew already what to do, precisely. Then I wrote the lyrics afterwards, shaping them to the music. For example “Everblack Fields of Nightside”, the one included in the split with HaatE, things have been quite different. I started working on a single synth riff, and I built the whole track from there.
I was recording each riff and part when it came to my mind. It has been a sort of work in progress. Nothing were set in stone and every idea I had could be a good point to work on and elaborate new ideas, riffs, melodies and loops. And yes, there’re a lot of loops and samples in that song.

You’re rereleasing Abisso with two new tracks, tell us about that, what’s the newer material like?
Yes, Abisso it’s going to be out with two new songs. The first one, called “Atto Finale: Di Notte, Cielo e Solitudine” it’s going to be the final act of the Abisso concept. A song I left behind in the original tracklist of the demo, but I decided to include in this ultimate release because, you know, I needed a sense of closure towards this album. That track is a long mid-paced suite. With a lot of synth stuff, and it could kind of remind you the track I included in the split with HaatE.

The other one is a bonus track, and it has nothing to do with the album concept. This song is called “Death’s Dominion” and I released it as a digital-only single on my Bandcamp page. (https://chiral27.bandcamp.com/track/deaths-dominion) This song has been written in the very beginning of 2014, when I was still working on my first demo “Winter Eternal”. This is my personal tribute to the amazing Swedish death metal scene.

Your split with HaatE was a meeting of two very distinctive styles, is the whole dark ambient scene something you’re a fan of?

Honestly? No I’m not. Hahaha
I mean, I like some ambient stuff and I love certain ambient releases, but most of them really bore me. You know, too often the “ambient” label is simply an excuse to throw away awful and senseless music, this is just my opinion of course. Otherwise some ambient releases are simply unbelievable. Like some Solar Fields’ works, latest Wolves in The Throne Room album and the ambient records crafted by Ulver or Lustre for example. Yeah, that’s the ambient music I’m a fan of.

Are there any good underground Italian bands that the rest of us should know about?
I’m not listening to many Italian acts these days, but if you ask for a suggestion and you want to know a bunch of bands from Italy, these are my favourites. The ones you must know.
– Chaos Plague (amazing prog death metal, they’re going to release their first full-length).
– Earth And Pillars (a brand new act that has crafted a rather good atmospheric black metal record).
– Solitude Project (depressive black rock/metal, check their split with Vita Odiosa).
– Korrigans (folk/black metal, their “Ferocior Ad Rebellandum” album is astonishing).
– Monumentum (you probably already know this one, a pillar of Italian dark music).
– Ornaments (instrumental sludge/doom, probably my fav Italian band).

Ok, that’s it. Hope I suggested you something you would enjoy.

When you’re not doing metal, what do you like doing in your spare time?
Well, more than a half of my day is spent working. I work as lathe turner. In my free time I like watching movies, hiking and drinking beer with friends. Especially I love dark beers. And of course I also listen to tons of music.

You recently did a kick ass cover of Emperor’s Toward the Patheon for a cover compilation. Will it see the light of day sometime soon?
Thanks, yes I did that cover and I enjoyed a lot recording that amazing Emperor’s masterpiece. But unfortunately I think that this compilation thing just failed. I don’t know how and why but the person who was arranging the comp just…disappeared. That’s a shame.

You are part of The Somber Lane Blog, tell me how that came about?

Yes, I started “The Somber Lane” with my fellow Andrea “Rizzo” who shares with me a great passion for music. We both love discover underground artists and bands and share them with our friends. So we decided to start this little blog to do so.

We try to be very professional in running “The Somber Lane” because we firmly think that this is the only way we can emerge amongst a ton of other blogs and also as a form of respect towards the artists we get in touch with.

So, if you feel to take a look at our small “somber” blog, follow this link then: https://somberlanemusic.wordpress.com/

Finally, please use this space to plug your band, your blog or anything else you want!
Ok, thanks. So, if anyone would like to follow my projects these are the main links you have to reach out:
Chiral website: http://chiralitaly.wix.com/chiral
Chiral Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ChiralItaly
Chiral Bandcamp: https://chiral27.bandcamp.com

The Somber Lane blog: https://somberlanemusic.wordpress.com/

Cheers man, appreciate your time!
Thanks a lot Sandy, and great work with your blog!

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