The new album 'Swan Songs II' has just been released,
how are you feeling now the songs are finally out
Gared: Like with every release so far, itís a
mix of joy to finally let our fans hear the songs in their
entirety and excitement if/how they like it. Luckily these
days, with all the videos and song snippets released prior
to the actual album release, we can already get a glimpse at
how the new material is gonna be accepted beforehand. But
yeah, nothing beats the amazing feeling of the album being
acclaimed by the fans after its release.
How would you compare 'Swan Songs II' to your earlier
releases, how do you feel your sound has developed
over this time to where you are today?
Gared: Well, the
concept of Swan Songs I and II is completely different
compared to our "regular" releases, obviously.
features our most musical and orchestral side, both mellow
and harsh, but far away from rock/metal drumming and heavily
Compared to Swan Songs I, which was
rather mellow and melancholic, we decided to add a
relatively heavy and dark touch on Swan Songs II.
Although the music on 'Swan Songs II" is
beautifully composed and almost romantic sounding, the
lyrics are quite emotional and disturbing. Where do
you get the inspiration for the lyrical content of the
Gared: Our singer, Chris, is the main lyricist.
an outside view, I think he gets his inspiration everywhere
from personal experiences to whatever he witnesses in his
daily life, with a tad of social or religious criticism at
times. Not everything is based on true stories, though.
There are many fictional scenarios he comes up with and
likes to write lyrics about as well.
What draws you to the darker side of the melody?
Gared: I guess that arises out of our individual tastes of
music and general inspirations. Weíve always felt music to
be stronger and more intense when written in a minor key,
thatís a mutual feeling within our band.
Right from the start the band have always have always
portrayed a strong visual image, both in your live
performance and on your videos. How important to you
is the visual element to your music?
question sort of answers itself already. Weíve already
done it that way and still keep on doing it, because it is
in fact very important to us. Itís not like the music
wouldnít work without our visual approach, but we do like
to underline it with how we look. And thatís fairly
different on each album. We like to think of something new
with every release, something that goes along with the
respective album. Of course on Swan Songs I and II and the
accompanying tours, we refrained from using heavy makeup
with all the body paint and whatever we usually like to do,
because it just wouldnít fit the mood.
You've released 3 videos to date from the new album,
all very different but equally very appealing. Did
you shoot all three at the same time or separately and
how long did it take to shoot them? Who came up with
the ideas and do you have any plans of making any more
videos from this album?
Gared: We actually shot
four videos for this album, one of which yet being to be
released. Two lyric videos, two "real" videos. They were
all shot within three days. The shoots involved everything
from scenes late at night, early in the morning before
sunrise, heavy rain, very little sleep, a lot of running and
hours of driving between many many different locations.
it was three utterly intense days in fact, as you can
possibly imagine. But nonetheless (or because of that)
weíre very happy with the outcome.
The initial ideas
usually come from us which we then work out together with
our video director, the great team of Vdpictures (www.vdpictures.ch
). I donít think weíre gonna do more videos for this
album. Everything has been said and done with these four.
The new album features a couple of special guest
co-writers, Scarlet Dorn and Martin Engler, how did
they become involved?
Gared: As for Martin
Engler, he and his band Mono Inc. have been friends of ours
since our early days, as weíve had our first big tour
supporting them in 2011. Weíve had several collaborations
with them ever since. Scarlet Dorn is a singer/songwriter
that Chris discovered. He offered her to produce an album
with her and also wrote a couple of songs for that album.
return, she came up with a song idea for us, which ended up
to be "The Broken Ones". We just recently released a
video for that song.
You have been very consistent over the years with the high quality of your releases and return with your latest
album. What was the writing and recording process like
for this album?
Gared: Itís so different from
what we "normally" do and yet it feels natural to
us. A good song is a good song, no matter in which guise it
ends up stylistically. For me, the most interesting part was
to re-arrange some of our older songs in a classical,
orchestral way. Itís so interesting to see a song that
until then you only heard as a metal song become an epic,
orchestral piece of music. Some songs were even pretty hard
to "convert", but I really enjoyed that challenge.
'Swan Songs II' has been released in CD, LP, Box and
Digital download, providing plenty of choice for your
fans, but do you ever get the opportunity to listen to
other artists and if so, which format do you prefer to
purchase music in for your own enjoyment and why?
Gared: I was born in 1987, right into the CD era. So Iím
not one of those vinyl enthusiasts. I do get the idea of
certain musical styles sounding best on vinyl and the size
of its packaging providing plenty of space for an elaborate
artwork, but that does not necessarily apply to the music
and artists I listen to. So Iím totally fine with CDs for
artists Iím a real fan of and streaming services for music
I "just like listening to". I know itís a shame, but I
donít really have much time to listen to music with the
attention it deserves. I have grown to appreciate silence a
lot whenever I can, since Iím constantly surrounded by
music and sound in terms of my job.
In general I think more and more people are coming
back to buying CDs and Vinyl records. What do you
think about this revival of the vinyl record and CD?
Gared: I absolutely support that. Nothing could ever replace
holding a physical record medium in your hands, putting it
into your playback device and listening to it while flicking
through the artwork. Thatís what I really enjoy doing if
(!) I find the time.
I might be a bit nostalgic about that
despite me and my generation being guilty for giving illegal
download platforms with shitty-quality mp3s and nowadays
streaming services a chance to rise.
So itís all the more
relieving and delightful to see that we return to
appreciating this form of art not only acoustically but also
The band performed at a number of festivals over the
Summer and recently completed their UK tour. How
did those go and what were some of the highlights?
Gared: Both the UK tour and the summer festivals were
amazing for a number of reasons. We havenít been to the UK
since our first time in 2010, so it was high time to return.
And we couldnít have felt more welcome, both by the
audience and by KMFDM, who we supported on those dates.
Itís never fair to pick favourites, but the London show at
legendary 02 Academy Islington was definitely my personal
The current leg of the tour finds you touring the US,
given recent events in Vegas, has this changed how you
feel about the tour at all?
Unfortunately, we were forced to cancel our appearance on
this tour due to our visa applications being declined by the
US authorities. But to answer your question in a more
general context: as cruel and horrific as events like the
one in Las Vegas are, us humans must never allow to let fear
conquer their lives, affect their free will and stop them
from making, exposing, consuming and enjoying art. We live
in a world where things like that can seemingly happen
anywhere at any time which could lead us to think that
no-one is safe. And as much as that might be the case, we
will still be safe and strong if we stand together and and
carry on, flipping the bird to whoever wants to jeopardize
our freedom of speech and art.
The music industry has changed a lot over recent times,
now social media plays a very important role in music
promotion and connecting with fans, posting updates about
the latest happenings in your career. How do you feel
about that? Do you often use social media?
We use social media on a daily basis. Itís a major pillar
of a bandís publicity these days, though many bands still
seem to underestimate its possibilities. Itís both
blessing and curse. You can reach huge amounts of people and
potential new fans if you use it properly, connect to fans
and give them so much more than just albums and concerts.
But at the same time, it establishes a sort of virtual
proximity that some people take too much for granted,
thinking we know every single fan by name. As much as we
love our fans, itís simply impossible to have a personal
relation to everyone, let alone know their names, despite
Facebook and its interpretation of the term "Friend"
MM: Originally the band was simply known as Lord but
soon changed to Lord of the Lost. What does the
name represent to you?
Gared: Many people feel lost
from time to time, including ourselves. We want to provide a
safe haven for those who feel lost and show that, if in a
community, feeling lost doesnít feel that bad after all.
MM: In the past I would have described your music as
Dark Glam with a touch of Cyber Goth, but 'Swan Songs
II' is much more symphonic in comparison to some of your
earlier songs. How would you describe the must
of Lord of the Lost to someone who hasn't yet heard
Gared: I honestly would have never connected the
term "Cyber Goth" to us, but hey, itís just
categories, right? Swan Songs is not the way we will sound
like forever from now on. Itís more like a band-internal
side project which we will surely revive every now and then.
Seriously, I couldnít describe Lord Of The Lost without
writing a whole essay. As a band member, I might just be too
biased. And thatís the reason why weíve made a playlist
on our official Spotify profile, called "Lord Of The Lost
- Essentials". If you want to know or show someone, what
Lord Of The Lost is all about, thatís where you will find
What does the immediate future hold for Lord of the Lost
after your current tour?
Gared: Next step will
be the tour for Swan Songs II in November. And as always,
weíre already in the process of writing songs for the next
album. Stagnation has never been our thing.
by: Little Linda