Evoken might be the heaviest band in the world and their new CD kicks major ass! Guitarist Chris Molinari was kind enough to let me interview him.
Michael Ventura: Greetings Chris and thanks for doing this interview with Doommantia! How are things?
Chris Molinari:Things are going pretty well. I am very glad for this interview opportunity.
MV: How did you come to be in Evoken and what bands, if any, were you in prior to joining?
CM:I have known Evoken for a very long time, and I actually did a gig with them as a live guitarist in 1996. In 2008 I was asked to perform with them again after Nick left the band, and eventually became a permanent member. Prior to Evoken, I was in a band called Divine Silence for a very long time, as well as with Grey Skies Fallen for a brief period.
MV: How much of the latest album did you write?
CM: As far as Atra Mors in concerned, I wrote an instrumental interlude and contributed a lot to the song writing, but the entire album was a creation of all five members of Evoken. I would say the major contributors to the basic song structures were John Paradiso and Vince Verkay.
MV: I recently got the new CD and I love it but it's decidedly more melodic than I was expecting; was this a conscious move or something that happened by accident?
CM: In all honesty, we did not intend this album to be melodic from the start, it kind of just happened. There actually was no real blueprint of how we wanted Atra Mors to follow. It just turned out the way it did during the writing and recording process.
CM: So far the reaction to Atra Mors has been overwhelmingly positive. I am yet to read a bad, or even indifferent review. I am sure there are people out there who do not like the album for one reason or another, but so far it is exceeding our expectations. We have received many compliments from fans at the handful of gigs we did shortly before and after the album's release.
MV: Was there any one specific thing that influenced the albums lyrical or musical direction or was it an assortment of things?
CM: I would say the biggest influence on the album was The Plague. Not to say Atra Mors is a concept album, but a lot of the imagery and lyrical content are influenced by this. Musically, we tried to convey the same atmosphere associated with this tragic time in history; cold, dark, and at times peaceful.
MV: Are there any major touring plans in the works?
CM: Right now there are no immediate plans for a full on tour, but we are taking part in the Decibel Magazine 100th issue celebration show in Philadelphia this coming January, as well as the 2013 Maryland Death Fest. I am sure Evoken will be on tour again in the near future.
MV: The artwork for this album is pretty cool, who decided it was right for the album?
CM: The artwork of the album was an idea we were thinking of for a long time. Basically, it consists of the dead rising from their graves and marching into oblivion. The artist, Robert Hoyem, really did a splendid job of bringing it to life.
MV: Are there any new bands you've been digging as of late?
CM: Most of what I listen to are bands from the 80's and 90's. As far as new bands are concerned, I am a really big fan of Ghost and The Devil's Blood. I eagerly await new releases from both bands. Of course there is also Trypticon. They are such a great band. We would love to do a gig, or a tour with them.
MV: What is your ultimate gig lineup?
CM: We have played with some really awesome bands. Katatonia and My Dying Bride were probably the best in the band's history. I feel if we could get Evoken, Skepticism, Esoteric, and Trypticon together; it would be a hell of a doom assault on wherever we venture.
MV: Is there anything else you'd like to say to the doomed masses?
CM: Thank you for your support of Evoken and Atra Mors. We look forward to seeing you all soon.
MV: Thanks again for talking with us Chris.
CM: You are very welcome. Best of luck to you!
Interview By Michael Ventura
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