Interview with Shield Anvil and Mortal Sword
Interview conducted by Sargon the Terrible
Date online: February 18, 2013
Caladan Brood have come out of nowhere (or more accurately from Salt Lake City) with an astonishing debut album with the epic Echoes of Battle. Mixing the atmospheric mastery of Summoning with the epic sweep of Moonsorrow, this album is destined to make waves. I was fortunate to get a few words from the enigmatic Shield Anvil and Mortal Sword about the creation of this amazing album.
Sargon: Salt Lake City isn't exactly a hotbed of metal bands, tell us how Caladan Brood came together.
CB: There are actually some fantastic bands here, they're just few and far between. Caladan Brood came together through our mutual love of fantasy literature and metal. We are both die-hard fans of bands such as Summoning, Elffor, and Nazgûl, so we decided to try our own hand at creating music in that style while dedicating the lyrics to our favourite books.
Sargon: So there are just two of you in the band?
CB: That is correct.
Sargon: For those not in the know, can you explain the band's name?
CB: Caladan Brood is a character from the Malazan Book of the Fallen book series by Steven Erikson. Science-fiction enthusiasts may also recognize Caladan as the name of the planet on which Frank Herbert's Dune was set, which is unrelated to our music but cool nonetheless.
Sargon: What bands have really inspired the sound of Echoes of Battle?
CB: Summoning, Elffor, Nazgûl, early Nokturnal Mortum, and related bands are the primary influence, as well as stuff such as Bathory and Moonsorrow. As far as non-metal influences go, we pulled from medieval/fantasy ambient such as Mantle of Dust, Lord Wind, Wongraven, and the like. We are also undeniably influenced by our favourite game soundtracks, including Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness, Diablo I & II, the Elder Scrolls games, and Heroes of Might & Magic, to name a few.
Sargon: The album sounds very polished, especially for an unsigned band. How did you get that great sound?
CB: The entire album was engineered, recorded, and mixed on a home computer, and then taken to a friend's home studio for vocal recordings and final mixing, mastering, and engineering.
Sargon: How did you record those choral parts?
CB: It's just standard, straightforward vocal layering (so the clean vocal parts were recorded numerous times and 'layered' over one another to achieve the effect). For the most part, it's a single person's voice layered somewhere on the order of 8-12 times depending on the part, but in the case of bits like the very end of Book of the Fallen, we actually layered numerous different people's voices to achieve a larger 'group chant' feeling.
Sargon: How long did it take to write and record the album?
CB: That's kind of a difficult question to answer, actually. We had a couple of songs that were written back in 2008, but we ended up not using any of them except for what eventually became the song 'Echoes of Battle'. Over the following year or two, we eventually pieced together riffs and ideas until we had the track list for what was to become the album. Once we had the foundations laid for the six songs, we would work on them sporadically, sometimes letting them sit for months at a time before returning to them (largely due to life, school, and work obligations). So we started the band in 2008, but it isn't really accurate to say that we spent 4 solid years working on the album, haha.
Sargon: What are your future plans for Caladan Brood?
CB: We do have somewhere on the order of 30-40 minutes of material that was written during production but never got fleshed out into finished songs, so we are considering reworking them and releasing them as an EP or using them as the starting point for the next full-length.
Sargon: Where can people get the album now it's been released?
CB: Directly from us or from the Northern Silence webstore: http://shop.northern-silence.de/index.php?lang=en
|Other information about Caladan Brood on this site|
|Review: Echoes of Battle|
|Review: Echoes of Battle|
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