Interview with SolNegre
Hello guys, nice to have you on Volatile Weekly! What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music, what would you be doing today?
Thanks so much for this chance. Music is the only way I can organize really complex ideas and manifest my true self, as well as to socialize with others. And being expensive it’s cheaper than a psychiatrist. Fair deal.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music, and how does that influence your creativity?
To do music in one way or another is the only chance I have to make the voices stop for a while. Staring at the starlit oceans or climbing mountains is another.
How long has your band been around?
The channeling of our music began in summer 2022, but they respond to a long process of highly functioning depression that’s been going on since basically forever.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
We’re from a rather small island, a sunny and funny place rich in nature and mental health issues. The feeling of isolation is never ending. The fear of the outside and the deep sense of communion with our mountains and the mysteries from the Sea are also a never-ending source of inspiration.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
SolNegre means “Black Sun” on our native language. It’s a deep philosophical concept as it’s the nocturnal Sun for those who can’t feel it’s warmth, so it’s basically a reversed or negative concept with deep implications. Fucked to spell, that’s true!
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
Solnegre is all about studio work, but we’ve been on other projects related to the extreme metal scene since the mid-nineties. Every epoch had it’s own vibe, nineties were a golden age of moshpits, smoke and ultra loud concerts, 2000’s were shitty for the most part and this last decade saw the rising of the festival as the main event and the frosty non-communicating concert with tracks and clicks as a norm. We’ve been one way or another touring or playing on venues since our teens, with kinda huge bands and understandably have many many dirty backstage and onstage stories. Still now I look back and I see this without emotion and even with a rather large degree of regret. Still, there’s some graphic material I fondle sometimes, when I feel really on the need to feel again what does this really mean to me.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
I will never forget Collectiv in Bucarest. Many died horribly just two weeks after I played there.
If you could play any show with any line-up, who would be on the ticket?
My aversion towards people and my imposter syndrome makes me anxious just by thinking about this. If I had to choose, I would go back to 1996 and play with Opeth on their Morningrise release tour, with a quite teen-ish Akerfeldt selling merch after they were opening for CoF on the Principle of Evil Made Flesh era. That was probably a life changing moment for most of us.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
Try and fail as many times as possible, look for the path of less resistance, try to understand where are you going, never procrastinate, be efficient. Speak slow and think slow but learn to play really fast (never know when the closest tech death metal band will call you to play). Keep toxic people away, don’t let them take advantage on your light. Eject them at the first red flag, because more will follow. Create a solid plan, if it doesn’t works create another one. Listen to a ton of music every month, support others as you want to be supported. Build solid relationships and above all, keep yourself focused and let this blessing flow through you in the way it desires to manifest.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
Walk among your equals or your betters. If the option is to walk among assholes, then walk alone.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
Probably “Vessel” as it explains how easy is to become the prey for the depression and the desperation. All of us are just two days away from failing, losing everything and ending our lives ourselves. No one is safe, nor the happiest, most stable person on earth.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
As a notorious dark artist said “We do not perform in front of humans”
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
All I do is to channel my darker self into existence, and this songs are a byproduct of this second me trying to communicate. On many occasions I just sit and relax and let this process of channeling to complete, and I end up with several minutes of usable material. The ancient greeks believed in a world of perfect shapes that could be gazed into but could never be fully understood. I can do nothing but agree with this point of view as I’m not fully understanding how, but the deeper the anxiety and the frustration, the easier if for me to follow through many minutes of music. On the past and on other projects we’ve used other more scientific systems, but to no avail. The results tends to be a rather poor mashup without real substance, which is no doubt an undesirable way of working. Real music is not composed, it’s channeled from somewhere else.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
This is about making others feel as bad as you feel yourself. Loss, betrayal, your past mistakes following you, guilt, overarching anxiety and the continual feeling of being crossing your red lines and losing your mind. All of us had been there at some point, any many of us live on a continual state of highly functioning depression. Our message is always to embrace these beautiful monsters and try to make them speak, as maybe they have something interesting to say.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
Not in this project, as we keep our distances and get together to record or to put something in common only. A very healthy misanthropic outlook. Disagreements within bands are extremely fucked up and inevitable at some point, especially when there’s some skin in the game, which happened on our prior project with my dear colleague Rigel. It’s always the same crazy shit, and no one realizes how pointless and futile this is. To lose long term friends and colleagues that sweated and most literally bled along with you in the name of the Ego and the credit for some music that just a bunch of people care for. What could possibly go wrong.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
We’ll release three times this year. Two singles and then a full LP at the end of the year. We put everything we are on the grill and that’s not an easy task, but we0re also very proud of what’s going to appear.
How can your fans best keep up to date with you, any socials you want people to check out?
Please follow us on @solnegre_official on Instagram and SolNegre on FB. Hope this don’t depresses you too much.