Earlier this week I was fortunate enough to interview Pieter Oevering from Insurrection and ask him some questions about the band as well as their upcoming release Circles Of Despair. The interview is below, enjoy!
For a little background on the band, how did you choose the name Insurrection, and how did you come together as a band?
I actually don’t know how the guys came up with the name Insurrection. I know they used to call themselves Deathwish in the beginning of the band. It started with our guitarist Marten Hutten when he started writing songs with his buddy Sander Blok. When the first songs started to take form they went looking for members to complete the band. That’s how they found our drummer Douwe Talma and soon after that our guitarist Armand Venema. With this lineup they called themselves Insurrection and started doing the first shows.
But after a few years things didn’t really work with Sander anymore. Different views and ambitions. So Sander left. At this time I was working as an intern at the Audioshape Studios. That’s where I met Douwe who was recording with his band Enraged in the studio. He told me about the vacant position of the band and asked me to do an audition for them as a vocalist and bass player.
When first starting out, did you start out as a straight up thrash outfit, or had you always had the idea to intertwine death metal in to your thrash foundation?
We didn’t really think about it in that way. We just tried to make the best songs with the best riffs we came up with. Looking back to it I realize we never aimed to be a full blown thrash outfit. There are enough of those bands already and we aimed more for our own unique style. Writing the best songs was always our main interest. Our songs need to be catchy and they need hooks. We want our songs to be catchy and to be remembered.
Thrash over the years in certain regards had and has grown pretty stagnant with a lot of ideas and sounds being rehashed. Was there a driving force for you to want to make a more unique thrash sound?
The whole process of creating our unique sound came remarkably natural to us. We are a band with 4 members with their own opinions and their own musical taste. Everyone in the band has their part in writing the songs. It takes a lot of compromising to imply all our own views into the songs. We went through a lot of trials and errors but now we know what works for us and what doesn’t work. The result is our unique blend of metal that we call Insurrection.
From your EP Catatonic to your full length Circles of Despair, what changes did you make to your sound if any? And how did the lyrical content from Catatonic to Circles of Despair change?
We played a lot of shows since the release of ‘Catatonic’. Our sound matured and we grew as musicians. We invested more in gear and we went into the studio with way more preparations in comparison to ‘Catatonic’. We took more time for the recordings. And this time we knew what we wanted! ‘Catatonic’ was more, we just go to the studio and record our parts and let’s see what happens. This time we knew what we wanted to achieve for this album and we didn’t stop working on it until we were fully satisfied by the results. Lyrically I also feel like I’ve matured. I found out while growing up that I became way better in expressing myself. It’s easier for me now to create a mood using my lyrics.
What were the driving forces for the themes in Circles of Despair? And what was the driving inspiration behind the lyrics to the tracks within this release?
Most lyrics on the album are a point of view on certain events or certain feelings. They’re always a way to express myself. I found out it comes naturally for me to write lyrics from a personal point of view. I write the lyrics and sing the songs, screaming the lyrics this way keeps it real and personal. The recurring lyrical themes on the album are about losing hope until complete hopelessness. The relief you can find in that hopelessness until reaching the deepest depths. Self reflection, suicidal thoughts, hate and hearing the call of the comfort of an endless void.
Can you tell me a little bit about the writing and recording process that went into making your new record?
I already told a bit about our writing process. Just like on ‘Catatonic’ we used different studios for different instruments. The drums are recorded at the Audioshape Studios. The bass is recorded at the Oeversound studio. Guitars are recorded at the Vainman Studio. Vocals and some choir parts are recorded at the Tunnelgeur Studios. And finally the acoustic guitar and the cello is recorded at the Neushoorn Studio. This way we could focus on each instrument separately and really pull the best performance out of the situation. We are really proud about how it all came together especially with the help of Fredrik Nordstrom and the Fredman studios for mixing and mastering the album.
The album art for Circles of Despair is amazing. What was the inspiration behind it, and what was the message if there is one that you are trying to convey through it?
The artwork is done by Remedy Art Design. We found him while looking for inspiration for the artwork and we really liked his style. We sent him some songs and he made this for us. We are really pleased with the results, it matches our feelings about the music and it gives a really nice and memorable face to it.
If there was anything that you would feel like you wanted to change in Circles of Despair what would it be?
I’m extremely proud of the final results. Wouldn’t change a thing. I listened to every song over a hundred times, there are some slight mistakes here and there, I think I’ve found them all by now. But editing them out would make it feel less honest and less real. With this album we captured our musical skills while we were on top of our game. This album is a reflection of our conjoined abilities of that time. There are some things I would like to do different now but that’s for the next album.
How has the reception been to Circles of Despair so far?
So far it is beyond our expectations. Haven’t heard a bad thing about it yet. But the album isn’t out yet. I can’t wait until it’s finally released to the mass public on august 30th. In the end the opinion of our fans means the most to us.
Are you planning on touring in support of this release, and do you know where you’ll be touring?
There are some really cool shows coming up. We’re heading back to Germany for a few days in october. Some cool festival shows next summer. And of course some cool stuff in between but I can’t confirm any of that on this point. Just that we are planning to play a lot of shows all over Europe in support of this album.
Finally, Is there anything that you would like to tell or say to your fans?
Yeah, i would like to tell everyone who is slightly interested in our music that we really worked our asses off for this album. We were all broken by the end of the recording process. It took a lot of sweat, tears and other manly body fluids to make this product. We’ve just released a new music video taken from the forthcoming album. Check it out on Youtube:
I would also like to invite you all to give our album a fair listen when it comes out on august 30th and look for the emotional energy that we try to capture. I want you guys to find the pure passion and ambition we put into making this album. And enjoy it to the max of your ability. Play it loud so the neighbours can enjoy it to 😉 see you guys at our shows! And like us on facebook ofcourse: www.facebook.com/insurrectionofficial
Thank you for your time and for answering my questions, it is greatly appreciated. Circles of Despair will be unleashed August 30th!