Germany's Night in Gales-fresh off of the great 'Nailwork' album
and weeks away from heading back into the studio for their forth
full-length effort, vocalist Bjoern Goosses was kind enough to let
us in on whats happening in the N-i-G world.
Wayfaerer-To start things out, how did you come up with the name
"Night in Gales"?
Bjoern-Well...actually our guitarist Jens stole the name
from a friend of him, who wanted to call his gothrock
band like this...but it was alright with him...we
wanted a name that's including sort of both beauty and
agression...you know a nightingale is a bird that
sings pretty beautifully and a night in gales is
obviously a damn stormstruck dark thingy thing,
W-What has the reaction been to 'Nailwork' so far?
I'd say its definitely your most mature release to
B-Thanx, Kyle. We're pretty pleased with the album
as well. Some say it's very progressive and sometimes
hard to listen to, but on the other hand most people
indeed seemed to be quite impressed by its original
sound...guess we are on our way to find the real
W-Well, it took me a few listens to fully appreciate
'Nailwork' (as with 'Thunderbeast') so correct me if
you think I'm wrong here, but I think there are many
people that still just seem to dismiss you guys and
lump you in with the NWOSDM (New Wave of Swedish Death
Metal) just because of your past releases and for some
odd reason, would prefer a more "In Flames-ish" sound.
What do you think?
B-We are that kind of band that usually has a close
contact to the crowd...when we play a show we really
appreciate to have a few beers with fans, or when we
meet some guys in a pub or something, we surely won't
be sort of arrogant assholes...and we are always
interested in our fans' thoughts and critics....but
actually this never influences our songwriting...when
someone likes one of the first albums but possibly not
the new one, we don't give a fuck...I mean, of course
a band is nothing without fans, but we create music
for us in the first sense, ya know?! The thing is...what does the listener expect...?! Does he want his
fave band to play the same style on each album?!
Unfortunately some people do this, but then the same
people who made you famous want to limit you...that's
kinda absurd, isn't it ?!
W-I know there are a number of people that don't even
know you have left Nuclear Blast. Why did you leave
and why did you chose Massacre Records?
B-As Skid Row said "...to me it's just monkey
business..." Nuclear Blast just got too big.
Especially for 'Nailwork' they almost didn't do any
promotion. The Nuclear Blast USA office was quite
alright, but here in Europe there was nothing...it's
surely a good label for bigger metal bands, but coz
they most times got dollar signs in their eyes now,
it's too hard to keep up the rat race for bands like
us. We dissolved the contract and got a good deal with
Massacre Records. I think the main thing between the
band and the label is the everyday life, you know?! A
good and easy cooperation, no asslickin' and no false
promises. Let's see how things work out out with
Massacre, by now the feeling´s pretty relaxed...(
check out their site www.Massacre-records.com)
W-Interesting that you mention Nuclear Blast USA's
promotion, I had figured it to be the reverse, I had
found out about 'Nailwork' being released in Europe in
March or April, but never heard anything from USA
until I saw it in the store in July. Either way,
seems like you made the right decision to me.
B-Indeed 'Nailwork' has been released in Europe on
March 20th 2000, and the U.S. release was set for July
11th 2000...so it was alright I guess...it's usual
for European bands that their records released in the
U.S. like 2 or 3 months later...but I have to say...we of course had much more contact with the German
office than with the American one, so we had much more
trouble with them as well...the contact to the U.S.
department was alright, but of course you don't really
get to know much about the promotion over there...you
seldom find American metal magazines here...however,
it's over now and we are focusing on new horizons...Nuclear Blast of course still spread the former Night
In Gales albums, but that was it...
W-I'm sure you've heard of the merging of Nuclear Blast USA with Century Media, what is your opinion on this,
given your former position on the Nuclear Blast roster?
B-I think it's a good thing...of course the Nuclear
Blast USA office wasn't much pleased with that, but
I think this will be a strong cooperation and a step
forward for hard stuff in the USA, we are in
frequent contact with the European Century Media
headquarters, and it's a really good label I think...
but what about the name?! Century Blast?! Nuclear
W-One of the other staff members wanted to know whether you were originally influenced by just the Swedish
scene or were you also influenced by the number of
German power/thrash bands? In a sense, what made you
opt for the Swedish sound instead of the German sound?
B-Well, I think the Swedes came up with a mixture of
classical metalmelodies e.g. Maiden-like twin guitars
and shit, and with a big portion of brutality as
well...our guitarist Jens, who writes like 95% of the
music, has always been a big fan of the
new wave of British heavy metal...when the other guys of
the band started up back in '92 or something with
their first band, they played kinda like grinding
doomdeath. But they just weren't satisfied with that
style and thought there was something missing, namely
the melody, the feeling...they just focused on
brutality back then...so Night In Gales was founded
with some new members to create music with more soul,
more melodies, but with the same level of agression...that's it...
W-Do you ever get annoyed by the In Flames/Gothenburg
B-Of course we do: when the comparisons are wrong.
Of course we had some Swedish styled stuff on the
first two albums, and then it's alright to be compared
with such bands. Most times it was meant as a
compliment, sometimes not...but 'Nailwork' moved away
from that I think, and the next record is gonna be
somewhat different again, and if anyone will judge
this as a Gothenburg style album, he doesn't know a
fuck about music...
W-I think Night in Gales would win the award for most
cool and original song titles, how do you come up with the lyrics?
B-Great to hear that you like the lyrix...indeed
I'm always trying to elaborate them well...it's just
that simple: when I'm in the right mood for writing a
few lines of neonblack nonsense, it just flows and
reflects the way I am and the way I deal with
everything...there's no special issue on which I
concentrate, I try to portrait a feeling, a general
kind of atmosphere. And when I tell ya how to eat a
scythe, you probably realize that I'm doing it with a
W-Of all the songs to cover for 'Nailwork', what made you choose "Black Velvet"?
B-Jens has always been a fan of Alannah (until he
realized she was a lesbian, hehe...) and we wanted to
choose a slow bluesrock song to transform it into an
evil thrashbaby... "Black Velvet" was just perfect. By
the way...the Japanese version of 'Nailwork' has
"Indians" from Anthrax as a bonus track...by now we
are covering a pretty cool doomrock classic...but
pssshht...more to come soon...
W-Interesting, well will this doomrock cover be on
the next album?
B-It will be on the Japanese release of
'Necrodynamic', but if we'll come over to your places
next summer, we'll play it live for sure...
W-Ok, I know this question goes back a ways but I
gotta know. One of the cool things on 'Towards the Twilight' was the acoustic song "From Ebony Skies", which had the death-rasp vocals over the acoustic playing, why did you go with this approach?
B-Indeed many people liked this song the most from
'Towards...', which was always quite surprising for
us...actually we just wrote this track to have a
short atmospheric break on the album, and when Jens
came up with the riffing, it was so sort of...yeah,
dramatic...and in combination with the lyrics this
little bastard song was so strong that I thought I
must scream like hell...
W-Any hopes of a US tour anytime soon? I'm sure
there must be a pretty big fan base here.
B-Yesss...we're working on it...hopefully we'll do
some shows next summer. We play some festivals in
Europe and in Marc, we're gonna hit Japan...the next
European tour is set for September 2001, so we hope to
get the chance to come to the U.S....we really get
lots of cool response from over there, and the sales
weren't that bad as well...just check out our website
once in a while ( www.n-i-g.com ), when we got any news about touring the U.S. they'll be posted there for sure...
W-What's the new material going to sound like, or is
it too early to tell?
B-No, it's not too early. We're gonna start
recording in 4 weeks actually...the new stuff is
comparable to the 'Nailwork' style, but it is a bit
more simple and straight, most songs are kinda like
3-minute neckbreakers...some riffing sounds like a
mixture of some 'Nailwork' stuff, bay area style,
grindcorepunk and I don't know...it's gonna be really
special...with strange vocals, even stranger lyrics
and yesss, the reaper himself will be collaborating
with us!! That's why the album title's gonna be
'Necrodynamic'...we'll work with Harris Johns again(
check out his studio's webiste www.spiderhouse.de!)
W-That being said, does this mean that can we expect an even more aggressive sound on 'Necrodynamic'? And
will there be even more vocal variation? I saw the
variation as one of the strongest points in 'Nailwork', you have a really great vocal range.
B-Thanx for the compliment...yes, indeed
'Necrodynamic' will be a bit more agressive than
'Nailwork'...I think it's gonna be really cool...
during the songwriting we did a little preproduction
to check out the arrangements and stuff, and coz I've
just got a little homestudio, we had to use a
drumcomputer instead of real drums. So we just
programmed the drums as fast as we liked them,
hehehe...so Christian is probably gonna do some nice
Lombardo-quality shit on the record.... also the
vocals are more important... there's gonna be more
melodic stuff, and sometimes the guitars are just
playing the rhythm shit while the vox is taking over
the lead melody...I think the style on 'Necrodynamic'
will make it pretty hard for the press to categorize
W-Do you happen to have any working song titles at the moment?
B-Hmmm...o.k., don't want you to cry...so here are
a few..."Doomdrugged", "The Zeronaut", "Go Get Some
Death", "Blackelectric", "Counting Flies"
................the lyrics are a bit more simple,
not that sort of "How to damage your tongue..."
anymore...aahh well, a little bit...but they got
some new aspects, coming down on you with a scissors
W-Ok, time for some fun questions. What have you
been listening to lately?
B-The musical taste varies pretty much from band
member to band member.... however, this is my personal
current top ten list...
1) Agents of Oblivion - Agents of Oblivion
2) The Tea Party - Triptych
3) Acid Bath - Paegan Terrorism Tactics
4) Pitchshifter - Deviant
5) Steve Vai - Sex and Religion
6) Nasum - Human 2.0
7) Down - Nola
8) A-ha - Minor Earth/Major Sky
9) Gladiator - Soundtrack
10) Dying Fetus - Killing on Adrenaline
W-What was your favorite metal album of 2000?
B-Being an arrogant rockstar I say 'Nailwork' from
Night In Gales...
W-Well, I don't know how arrogant a statement that
is...'Nailwork' ranked #7 on my list for 2000. I've
read many other positive reviews as well.
B-Great to hear 'Nailwork' is ranked #7 on your
favelist this year...usually no one wants to say he (or she, of course...let's stay p.c.) likes his (or
hers, hehehe...) album. And many people indeed would
judge it as arrogant, when a musician says that... but
I consider 'Nailwork' as at least the most important
metal album for me this year, coz I'm simply in that
band and I spill my damn heart's blood for it...
W-What is the greatest movie of all time?
B-I have to admit that I'm not that much into
movies...I seldom visit a cinema...but I'm a big fan
of Mickey Rourke, "Rumble Fish" is a killer one, "A
Prayer for the Dying" is really touching...besides
these movies I really like the Quentin Tarantino
stuff... but the best movie of all times is probably
the one called "Life", each person who watches it is
the main character and the story is written by some guy
called... hmmm can't remember... some people think
he's got a long white beard and they say he lives
somewhere above, some say his son was a famous popstar
like 2000 years ago...but I don't think so...
W-If you were given one wish, what would you wish
B-I´d wish to have as much free wishes as I want...
quite tricky indeed, hmm?!
W-Ooh, you got me on that one, haha! Any closing comments you'd like to make?
B-Not really, but take care, coz death is gonna take
over soon!! 'Necrodynamic' will be released in Europe
in late April, we're looking for an American licensee
right now, so if anyone is reading this, get in touch!
...I hope we'll soon damage your ears playing live
somewhere in the U.S.... so go get some death then !!!
W-Thanks for spending some time getting us up to date, I look forward to 'Necrodynamic' with an "all scissors smile" and hope to see you next summer!