Rock Impressions

by Giancarlo Bolther

Can you give us an introduction to your band with the history of your group?
After a while playing together in the metal band Insomnia Astrorum, we three guys showed grown interest in performing our strong interest in nature and also mythology in another way: with more acoustic and a somehow calmer music. That was the birth of the fundamental music concept of Neun Welten. It is just for us a more calm expression of our inspirational sources. Anja and Aline joined us after a while and their different musical background and influences, made the sound of Neun Welten to that what it is today. Well, nature is one of the major inspirations for our music. Now we are playing in this cast since ca. 7 years. Nowadays we combine diverse instruments from more classical ones like violine, cello, flutes (recorder and clarinet), piano with rather modern sounding instruments like drums and acoustic guitars. Our music is mostly pure instrumental and creates an emotional and eerie atmosphere which sounds very organic and natural. The result is a mystical, melancholic and sometimes forceful sound. All songs of Neun Welten are composed by ourselves. We would call the style of music as mystical nature-folk.

Between the first album and the new one there is a 3 years gap, what has happened during this period and why did it takes so long to realize Destrunken?
In the first year between the 2 records we played al lot of live shows for example the tours with Dornenreich and Tenhi in 2007. Afterwards we decided to fully concentrate on composing new songs for the album “Destrunken”. In the last year we finally recorded, mixed and finished the work on the layout. We actually wanted to release it earlier but due to some unpredictable circumstances and to our ambition to fetch the best adequate result for each song, we took the time which was required.

In your opinion, which are the main differencies between your studio records?
In the songs of both albums we tried to express our experiences in and with nature. With “Vergessene Pfade” we described nature as we see it...more like scenes/ pictures of the nature as such. In our recent album we don't describe the nature how we see it, we try to express more the different inner perception of nature (environment) one might have depending on his/ her emotional conditions.
From the beginning "Destrunken" had a stronger concept behind the songs and because of that the songs conveys a similar atmosphere, which is much darker and intimate.

Your music seems to have a double character, the aestetic one and the spiritual one; which is the most important for you?
Indeed the 2 characters belong very close together and we cannot say which is more important.

Your your music is a way to escape from the reality or to face it?
Not an easy question. Actually we want to take listeners on a journey and want them thinking about their experiences by listening to our music. You also can just dream by listening it. But often by thinking about things that had happen and reflecting them you'll be influencng reality as well....mybe with a certain point of view or different actions.

Does your music could be described as a dark reflection about our times? What do you believe about this period, do you are optimistic or do you fear the future?
It is not meant to be but actually some others before raised this question and thought already. We here in central Europe and especially we as individuals live a very comfortable, pleasant life without war, nature catastrophes and especially without major (!) financial problems. We have the possibility here in Germany to take care of our environment, e.g. to recycle almost everything and to choose sustainable energy resources or even to protect landscapes against human use. We try to be frugal with resources but that is the luxury we personally can afford. Most of the people in the world have to live the same way, but due to reasons of surviving. That is very important to reflect for yourself as often as you can. Let's say other way round, it is not necessary to have e.g. as many (new) electronic stuff you can get or a big car or even always new clothing. If you have the chance to travel, do it and everyone will see what is tried to depict here. We have to be thankful for our situation…Being optimistic or fear…mmmhhh…So far I think there are still ways to cope with environmental and financial issue but it will be much harder in 30 years, so solutions and research how to solve those issues are needed.

Can you tell us about the songs from Destrunken and how do you go about the process of composing songs?
Composing songs is a process we are all involved in and we all create the songs together. Thus, sometimes in the end a song can differ very much from it's primordial idea. If we start to write new songs, we mostly start with a theme, a melody which someone of us presenting. Around such a melody, or sometimes it is already a skeleton of a song, we compose new tunes, always considering which atmosphere should be transferred with the different parts of the whole songs.

In the album there are a lot of folk/traditional influences, can you tell us more about your interest in folk music?
This of course differs among us. Folk music often means for us, traditional instruments, less Pop (could also differ) and a certain interest of those musicians in historical issue. So this something we have in common. There are also some folk bands which all of us really like, e.g. Triakel, Tenhi or more modern folk bands like Dazkarieh.

Song after song in the new album I feel a crescendo in intensity and vibe, does it is a coincidence or it was a searched thing?
Interesting, that you mentioned that... it's somehow both or neither (not really searched but also not conicidence). The basic of our songs has been our conceptual idea and this "story", idea we had in mind somehow "controlled" the stories of our songs. And therefore for us, there is a story told among all songs which begins with expressing restlessness, fear and ends with "inner calmness". At the end of our song composing process we arranged the order of songs how it felt good for us and expresses our concept in the best way. The consequence might be a crescendo in intensity and vibe...but that also depends on the way one is listening to the album.

Your music is very melancholic, which is the message that you want to say?
There is no particular melancholic message. With “Destrunken” we want everyone exploring for oneself which feelings, pictures our music generates within the outer frame our music is giving. Maybe it’s less personal, if we don’t present a given meaning of the music, but we want the listeners finding their own experiences/meanings/pictures in our music. It is a more intimate process with themselves? We just want to show possible pathes…

Are you close in some ways to the new pagan movements?
Not so close. We try to meet friends and having a bonfire, mead etc. and the solstice days and we are of course interested in similar things as may be close followers of the new pagans.

The modern way to play medieval and folk music has got a long tradition since the seventies (Comus, Gryphon, Jethro Tull, Horslips...), the eighties (Dead Can Dance, Current 93, Sol Invictus and many more...), nowaday it seems that there is a very important scene at first in Germany with lot of acts (Adaro, Faun, Of The Wand And The Moon, In Extremo, Saltatio Mortis, Morgenstern, Schellmish, Subway To Sally...), do you feel to be part of this movement, or do you think to have something different to say?
May be we are part of it may be not. There are very few bands with a similar musical style but of course many more with a similar background of interests in history or nature. Our musical focus is to present a very organic and may be earthy sound without any dancing aspects, which differs to some of the bands you named.

What kind of music do you listen to? What are your favourite bands actually and what are your inspirations from the past?
Puh…again this differs quite a bit among us. Some bands additionally to those already mentioned are (in no particular order and mixed with current personal favourites and major inspirations): Minor Majority, Yann Tiersen, Estampie, Tindersticks, Emperor, Sigur Ros, Russian Circles, Ulver, Starsailor, Olafur Arnalds, Goran Bregovic, Vali, Tenhi, Empyrium, Naked Raven, Wolves in the Throne Room.

How culturally connected are you to your native land?
I’m not sure if I understand what you are asking. But I try. All of us feel very comfortable in Germany and esp. in middle Germany, where we live. We've travelled a lot across the world and our musical inspiration isn't bound to a certain country or culture. We already saw so many beautiful places which has inspired us/ our music, in Germany but also in other countries.

Which is the greatest satisfaction happened to you in your musical carreer?
The label contract with prophecy productions. Being on tour with Tenhi and Dornenreich. Holding all of our CD’s in our own hands and to name may be a single concert, the Prophecy 10th Anniversary Concert Night.

Could you give us some anticipations about your future projects, please?
We are planning to play live shows to present "Destrunken" to our fans, but there is nothing concrete yet. Furthermore we already started to write new songs :O). Just keep an eye on our Internet pages for more news.

Thanks a lot for giving us this opportunity and feel free to end this interview with a message or a salute...
Thank you very much for your interest in Neun Welten!
…in perpetuity wood…

Reviews (only in italian): Vergessene Pfade; Destrunken

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