For all who doesn't know you yet. Please firstly introduce yourselves:
Jeff : We are SURTR, the bringers of doom from France. We were born in 2009
and we play a fuckin' mix of doom metal subgenres because we like to play slow
and to hear the bass roaring.
Julien: Jeff said everything, what could I add? We are a power trio in
the “classic” sense of it. We're three music fans before all, and we know each
other for a very long time now. We just try to get as close as possible to our
goal which is to make our own place in the music scene.
Whom do you want to reach with your music?
Jeff : I don't give a fuckin' interest in reaching people. I need to express
myself and to share the sadness but also the rage which entered into me by
living in this stupid world. Surtr reaches anybody who can feel what we are
Julien: I've never really thought about this. For the most part, we just
try to express and satisfy ourselves by writing songs and playing them live. Of
course it's important to know that people are appreciating what we're doing, and
it's very pleasant and rewarding to gain some kind of recognition through this.
Personally I think that an audience of pure but open minded metalheads would be
the perfect crowd to play for.
Régis: Personally I want to reach my own wellness. But if we can reach a
handful of puritans either, that’s could be fun too!
You play Doom Metal, but you doesn't adhere to the musical rules of the
genre. This means you play multi-variant riffs also of other Metal realms and of
the rock music. You also use additional instruments like for eyample the organ.
Is this process of mingeling of old and new stylistic elements deliberately or
did it develop more randomly?
Jeff : We don't think about what we wanna do or how we wanna sound.
Everything just comes naturally. This is the sum of what we are as a power trio.
This is what Surtr is.
Julien: It's just the reflection of what we are as individuals and the
sum of our different influences. Thus it's pretty natural as we don't want to
stay stuck in one little compartment only. Music is too rich and wide to
restrain oneself to just one direction. Experimenting and exploring new options
is essential to develop creativity and to keep interest and motivation inside a
band. I couldn't imagine myself playing the same riff again and again on every
Régis: I can play the same drum pattern for hours without getting bored
of myself, just because it sounds too good. But Julien and Jeff need variations.
It is also good to break the codes of the genres when it is possible. Doing what
the others do is really simple to do, but that’s not what we want with Surtr. We
try to develop our very own style in the doom metal subgenre. And we see it more
like a true heavy metal style. That’s what doom metal is.
You recently published your cd “Pulvis Et Umbra”. Can you tell us something
about its content (musically and lyrically)?
Julien: This album is the picture of what we were at the time we wrote it.
It's heavy, dark and slow, but original in its own way. It was a big progression
after World of Doom and it was our first real “professional” release. So there's
still a lot of margin for improvement. This album is pretty varied although each
song sounds like us, and this is also why I think that most “extreme” music fans
can find something pleasing and appealing in it. It was a great pleasure to
write and record it and we now really want to bring this out to the crowd by
playing it live and loud.
Jeff: As in our first effort World of Doom, Pulvis et Umbra talks about a
constant fight to survive in modern society. I always work through metaphors and
similarities. For me it’s a way to write fancy lyrics mixed with daily life
facts. So you can just take it as a story or you can also find some ideas which
might make you remind your everyday life. The lyrics tell you how hard it is to
build your “own space”, the “own world” your need to leave with serenity and to
think you’re really living the life you want.
Do you have any role models?
Jeff: I never (and I never will) tell myself "I want to be like this band"
or "I want to sound like this guy". I seriously don't give a shit. Of course we
have many influences but we have no goal like becoming as famous as another band
or playing the same kind of music that another one. We just walk ahead being
natural, being authentic, being Surtr.
Julien: There are many bands that I appreciate, but no single one that
I'd like to sound exactly the same. I prefer us to walk our own path. I'd like
our band to keep its integrity, unity, passion and constant will to progress as
long as possible. That would actually be my model as a band.
Régis: As I said, doing the same thing that other band is very easy, but
not interesting. And they are too much various bands that we like; I even not
know which band I would take. Trying to be our own model is the hardest way, but
I think that’s the way each band have to think, because it’s the way musicians
improved themselves. And thus the day maturity will come out of it, you’ll
create your own style in pure integrity and maybe, if you’re lucky, you’ll make
evolve the whole subgenre.
Are you in contact with other musicians / bands?
Régis: We try to be in contact with others bands, because that’s our chance
to play outside our own region and to meet interesting people. It’s also the way
to learn from people who get other experiences, to share and evolve. I think it
is very important not getting egocentric and being open to others. I know so
much musicians who believe that they are the best ones, that they play the must
mind blowing music … in their own living room. That’s not why I want.
Jeff: For us, human exchange and communication is also important when we
perform live. We’re not the kind of guys who just come, play and leave. We like
to discover the other bands and people in the audience, to speak with them, to
live something with them. It’s like travelling. Each meeting can bring something
new to your mind.
Where do you see the band in five years?
Jeff: I can't look that far in the future. Everyday is a new day and each
day something new can happen. You can always have some dreams but don't forget
daily life sucks. So before the end of 2014 we'll try to go back in studio to
record our third album and we hope to tour a lot before that.
Julien: I can't even imagine myself in 6 months, so you're asking too
much. However our main focus in 2014 will be the third album. It's going to be a
very exiting musical journey and probably one of the most important step in our
evolution, both as a band and as individuals.
Régis: I just hope the goal we try to reach will be closer in 5 years and
to be blossoming as a musician.
Will we see you in 2013 also live on stage? In case yes, where?
Jeff: First we'll be in Lille (FR) on June 14th to support Dutch Stoner Doom
Metal band Dresden/Leningrad, then we will perform a week after at the biggest
and coolest French open air festival Hellfest Open Air, sharing the doom/stoner
stage with Sleep, Cult of Luna, Procession and playing the same day as
Candlemass, Down and Kiss. In October we'll be in Rotterdam (NL) for the Dutch
Doom Days festival XII and finally we'll have a mini-tour in Germany in
November. I hope more concerts will be booked until then.
Any last words to your fans and Extreminal readers:
Jeff: Keep supporting upcoming bands and if you like them, go to their
shows, buy their CDs, help them to grow. You can entirely listen our new album
Pulvis et Umbra on Spotify or Deezer, then maybe you will be interested in the
limited transparent blue vinyl version or the CD. Keep spreading the world and
being doomed by the giant's sword!
Julien: Thanks for your support and the positive feedback. Come to see us
on stage and have a drink with us! Keep supporting honest and dedicated music!
Régis: See you on stage and do not hesitate to ask us to play in your own
town or your living room