DIS PATER: “All the time we felt our band is a metal band”
Greetings, DIS PATER. So I guess it‘s already a tradition that almost every year you are visiting our country (Lithuania) and play a special show for us. Three years ago it was in „Kunigunda Lunaria“, last year – „Helloween“. As for now – again, just a week is left till you play on the same stage in „Mulen Ružas“. How do you feel about this upcoming show? Do you consider the Lithuanian audience is already loyal fans of yours?
Yes, we like to play here. The specific atmosphere here, on gothic parties, is very close to us. We understand our music is not what exactly gothic fans expect, but every time we come here, we meet very good responses from the Lithuanian audience.
You are going to play a live performance here for already the third time, but until today we didn’t find any special possibility to introduce your band more properly. So let us correct this mistake right now. DIS PATER was started more than ten years ago, in 1993, right? Tell us a little bit more about the whole growth of the band from the early days till now. Were there any special events that played a very important role in the band’s existence?
It was too many years ago that we even don’t remember our early days :). Yes, really. Everything turned over since this time. The band’s line-up has fully changed. The band’s life is like that of a human – every day is interesting and you never know what the next day will bring to you.
A long period of existence, but only one album “Princess of The Emerald Garden”. How could it be? Nowadays bands are able to make several releases during one year… How can you explain such a situation? Not enough time? Lack of creativeness (doubt so)? Or are you just trying to make everything perfect and wait for the right time?
“The princess…” is a not our first album. We recorded as least 3 albums before it. But the quality of them was not so good for releasing. That’s why “The Princess” is considered as “our first” album. The second reason – we are not a commercial band and we are not obliged to make album after album, as more as possible. We do our music for our own satisfaction. Every song – is not just a song, it’s a something very personal and very close to our souls. Every song must be passed through the time. Making production as on conveyor is not our way.
Considering the last question, what are your relations with the labels? Your only album was released on “CD-Maximum Records”. Did it take a long time to get into contact with them? How did you find that it was the most needed label for your band and music?
Our first label is just a label for introducing our band. With the help of “CD Maximum” our album may be bought worldwide. But we never think about any contracts. Concerning our next album, we think it will be released in the same way, maybe with a more famous label, better promotion etc. In any way, we are concentrated now on music creation and only after that we will think what to do with that.
Ok, as we started talking about the albums, I can’t miss this question. When are we going to hear about a new release of DIS PATER? By the way, maybe I just don’t know and you are already working on the new material in the studio?
Our relation with studios is not the same as for other bands. We can’t understand when we hear that some band is “sitting in a studio and is creating new material”. Many bands enter the studio with ideas which are transformed into songs and albums only during the recording session. Maybe it is a good idea but we cannot work this way. We think all material must be ready before entering the studio, since rehearsals. We create song after song, think about arrangements, etc. And only when we see that we have enough songs for recording, we record them. Recording for us is not a creative process, its just a technical necessity, which finalizes all the process of album creation. Answering your question, we think we will be ready to record our next album next year.
Let’s move straight to your music. From my point of view, you are trying to combine the aesthetics of gothic art and the heaviness of metal. Melody, melancholy and romanticism are dominating in your music. What ideas and feelings underlie beyond these sounds? What are the key aspects that force you to create exactly such music?
When we create our songs, we are not thinking that it’s gothic or metal or something else. We just do what we hear deep into our souls. To ask about reasons that forced us to do such music is a useless action. Can you say why people love or suffer?
You know, I’m reading the lyrics of your songs at the moment. And I have an idea that texts in your music are no less important than the whole music… Actually, much time has passed since I read words written so poetically. Who is the author of the band’s lyrics? How important are the topics that you’re singing about in fact? And the most interesting is what are the key themes that you realise in your music?
You know, the lyrics were not so important for us for many years. It was just as a filling of songs for completion. Just words, nothing else. But when we were creating “The Princess…”, we met Michael Cherniy, and his ideas, feelings we have found so close to ours that we asked him to make lyrics for the album. And we think nobody could do it better. So now we consider this man as a band member. No doubt, the lyrics are very important for us and can’t be apart from our music.
As far as I remember you on the scene, the image and appearance in front of fans are also not the last things in the line of your priorities. Medieval style and splendour are those features that I see in your personas. How do you prepare for live shows and how image is important to you? Shouldn’t the music be above all and stand in the first place?
To say the truth, image is not very important for our band. In usual gigs we are dressed as anybody wants, and nobody cares about it. Still, the show in Lithuania, as we said, is a very special show for us. Surrounded by the audience dressed so amazing, we cannot look like nomads. So before such parties we always try to work on our image. Also, we have prepared something for the forthcoming party. Anyway, music is in the first place for us.
Now, let’s move to more abstract things. Here in Lithuania you have played in two festivals that both were more or less related with the gothic subculture. But I guess you have lots of fans among metalheads too. What is the situation in your local country – where do you usually play and how do you imagine a typical fan of DIS PATER?
All the time we felt our band is a metal band. And one time somebody said that our music is close to gothic style. Since that time we got many gothic fans. It was not our idea, but you know, the fans know better. Here in Russia, we play in any concerts, either metal or gothic shows. We do not care about it. All people who like our music are our friends.
The members of DIS PATER… Different personas, different needs, pleasures, etc. How do you manage to make one and undivided result (I mean the music)? How does the creation process proceed? ‘Cause I know from my practise that, when different ideas collide, there can be many conflicts inside a band… Or do you think that there must always be one person, one leader, who controls all the creation process? What’s the situation in DIS PATER?
Maybe this is a reason why we do our albums so slowly. We try to reach the result which would satisfy every member of the band. Only this way. And we believe we never live to a situation when one person will decide what to do. We know many bands leaded by only one person. For us it’s very strange and we can not understand what all these musicians do behind this one person.
The art is the way to express your ideas, thoughts, contemplations… But there are always things that force you to create. What are the reasons that make you create the music? In other words, where do you take the inspiration from? Nature, different kinds of art, social life, the daily round, etc.?
It’s a very wide question. Just one answer is held in mind – “from everything”.
Besides the influence from the living environment, there are always musicians or bands that have changed your attitude toward the music or even thinking. What about you? What are the crews or different instrumentalists that made the biggest impressions on you? What bands have influenced the music of DIS PATER?
As we created our band, many famous bands were our idols. From METALLICA to SISTERS OF MERCY. In earlier years we were trying to find our style, music, sound. And tried to do it like a famous band. Then we opened for us ANATHEMA and MY DYING BRIDE. That was the point on which we decided we found our way. At the beginning we played like these guys but then we stopped repeating somebody’s ideas, creating our own music. We believe nobody says now that we play like ANATHEMA or MY DYING BRIDE, but originally these bands formed our visions. And these bands will always be very special bands for us.
Though you come from Russia, but your living place in Koenigsberg is isolated geographically. But it is interesting – what is the situation in your metal scene out there? Are you interested in it? Besides, your band members play in other projects too. How do you see the whole situation – are you an active person or just a “lazy” listener?
Comparing to the nineties of last century, the situation became better. Some new clubs opened here where bands can play. And you can be sure that you will find a place for spending time and listening a nice band every weekend. We are not active fighters for the development of music in Koenigsberg, but we definitely like what is happening today here in the music field.
So as we have slowly approached the end of our conversation, give the game away – what are we going to hear (and see) next Saturday in Vilnius? What songs are you going to play? Or maybe you are preparing any surprises?
As we have some changes in our line up (new bass and drum players), our show will not be so long as we wanted. But we will play some songs from “The Princess…” and some new songs. Also we have prepared an interesting show, and, believe, it will be quite original.
So let’s stop here. Thank you very much for the time spent with my questions and for the good answers. I hope your future show won’t be any worse than the two performances I’ve already seen. Good luck and see you soon.
Thanks to you too. Every party in Vilnius is a very important event for us. See you…