Finsterforst was formed in 2004 and have, since that time, gained a small but loyal fan base across their country and throughout the world. They have released two full-length albums, 'Weltenkraft' and '...zum Tode him', the latter of which particularly impressed me to venture out and secure an interview with this dedicated outfit of shirtless miscreants. I could go on all day about '... zum Tode hin's' virtues but I'll spare you, though you can read a full review of the album.
A few months back I was finally able to get in touch with Simon, the bands hard working guitarist and he was kind enough to take time out of his very busy life and answer some of Metal Call-out's questions. With out further ado, 'Finsterforst... das Interview'.Lets start with your name. Myself, and most of our American readers are not familiar with German geography but I do know your name basically translates to 'Black Forest'. Which if I understand correctly is a large forest region to the south in Germany, do you all live near there or what specific importance does it hold for you?
That is totally right. Finsterforst is a synonym for the Black Forest which is a very beautiful region in southwest Germany where the world’s best beer is made! All of us are coming from here. To be more detailed, we all are coming from around Freiburg but lately our drummer moved to another town in Germany due to studying and I am living from time by time in Bulgaria. Still we all are “true” Black Forest citizens! Haha!
-In my recent review of your latest album, '...zum Tode hin' I remarked that a lot of the album sounded like 'focused jam sessions'- What is the writing process like for Finsterforst? And where do you draw inspiration?
To be honest, we never created anything by “jamming” or whatsoever. This wouldn’t work out for such kind of music. The songs are created usually in home at the computer. I have my guitar, my brain (?!) and my passion for composing. Step by step I compose and arrange the music in home before all of us prepare it for entering the studio to record the material.
I think you get inspired by anything you see, hear, feel or experience during your day life. And so it is with me I guess.
-I know that you have had a few unfortunate cancelations but otherwise, what is touring like for the band? Any funny stories, favorite spots?
Well so far we didn’t have a real tour. As you said you know about some cancellations, usually we had to play a tour last summer through Europe. But due to that incompetent son of a bitch of an “organizer” from Metal Maniacs Romania this whole tour was fucked just a few days before it actually had to start!! We and all the other bands were pissed like hell of course. Well anyway, in future it will be better, right? Hah!
But in general we experience always funny stuff when we have somewhere gigs in Germany. We travel then by our own together in one or two cars. You guys would understand what I mean with “crazy, funny, unbelievable, idiotic, awesome, Badisch, drunken” if you would know all of us in person! Haha! It is not only always a highlight when Tobi (our bass player) just takes someone of us and throw him to the ground or for example when David (rhythm guitars) is NEVER stopping with laughing (and no, he is not smoking weed or any shit like that!). So yeah, “touring” is more than awesome with this band!
-'...zum Tode hin' is a pretty clear departure from your other work (ie. longer songs, more interludes, maturity), but still has the inherent 'Finsterforst sound' fans love. Was this album's shift one you made consciously or was it more a natural next step?
I guess both. Of course I planned to grow up and become more “mature” with the music. I have put many efforts in it but I also have to admit that it was happening naturally. Time by time you get more critical with yourself and it needs more time until you say to yourself “Fuck yeah, this is the way I want it!” And I can already tell you, the development is going further and further. There is already new material for a next album and in my opinion it blows “…zum Tode hin” totally.
-Lets talk about lyrics for a second. I (after hours of translation) love them, for the sake of our readers without the ability to translate, What are your lyrics about? What experiences or beliefs drive them?
I have to be honest now. Usually I would have to give this question to our singer, but unfortunately we separated some months ago, so we are without a vocalist at the moment. The lyrics were always created very awesome. The content is mostly about life and themes you even experience in your day life. But it contains also of course much about nature, which is a very important theme for all of us in the band.
-Who influences you as musicians?
Like I said I am influenced by anything I listen to or even experience. Of course I listen much to other Pagan bands from Scandinavia. But also I like other kinds of music. Not even only Metal. I can listen to several stuff like Rock, Classical music (no, I don’t wanna sound musically “intelligent”!) or even to some Techno or Drum ‘n’ Bass shit. Haha!-What has been the biggest challenge to overcome as a band? Well I guess there are several events in our history. It started with finally finding a drummer, which took us more than a year! It was really hard to find anyone for the drums in our region. But from then on we could finally start to perform live on stage. After we released our debut album through that Japanese asshole label “World Chaos Productions” we had nothing but trouble with this guy! No answers, no contact, no nothing! It was just a huge disappointment for us and we experienced from the beginning on that in this “music business” are some wrong individuals. But whatever, we found a label after that and we are pretty satisfied with Einheit Produktionen (greets to Olaf!!).
We thank all the people who enjoy our music! Hope to convince also you Americans of our music and to see you soon! Cheers! PROST!