A CURA DI GIULIA DE ANTONIS E LAURA CASSARA
To get started. Where did the idea of creating a musical project like this come from? Why did they choose this particular name?
It all started after exploring the fields of Death and Doom metal with other projects. The objective with this project was to create music with dark atmospheres and symphonic elements for the treatment of occult lyrics and gloomy themes. At the beginning we knew about pure black metal in the Norwegian style and we weren’t interested, that’s why our first influence was Septic Flesh, then we got to know symphonic Black metal from the hands of bands like Cradle of filth and Dimmu Borgir and we realized that was what we needed to create music with a dark atmosphere and rich in harmony. Of course, our Death Metal influences have never left us, that’s why the mix in our music. Not to mention that we don’t want to be musically limited by style issues. We are not a purely Black band even though we sell ourselves that way. Rather we are Black/Death with dressings of other styles. The name was chosen from the play “Faust”, by J. W. Goethe, where a doctor makes a pact with the devil (Mephistopheles) to obtain all the wisdom in the world. Mephisto is the abbreviation of the name of this character that adds to the long list of nicknames that the devil already has.
What are your songs generally inspired by? Who is in charge of the compositions? What can you tell me about the lyrics?
I, the bassist of the band, is the one who takes care of the compositions, although when the time comes for the arrangements everyone puts their hand in, so the final product can be said to belong to everyone. On the theme of the themes, well: the eternal antagonism between God and Satan, good and evil. The legends about this beyond the “official” scriptures of the Bible. Many dark and mythological literary influences such as E. A. Poe. H. P. Lovecraft, Milton, Baudelaire. The heroic fantasy of J. R. R. Tolkien, the writings of E. Levy and A. Crowley, the Satanic Bible of A. Z. La Vey, etc. On the Pentafixion album you can find all these influences. There are two trilogies, one based on the poem “Paradise Lost” by Milton and the other trilogy based on “The Lord of the Rings” by J. R. R. Tolkien. Also much influence of the Lovecraft stories and some antichristian hymns and diatribes against the figure of God.
This album was born in a particular way, first the lyrics and then the music. How do you manage to make them fit together?
I would describe it differently. First you think about the theme where the song will go and the music is made based on that principle. The other way is to develop an idea, a riff, or several riffs, and say: this works for a song with such a theme. In the end, based on that idea is then, as a final process, that the letters are made. But the idea of where the theme of the song will go is already thought from the beginning.
Among all the songs, is there a particular track that you think best represents the band? If so, why?
Within the album I think there are two tracks, which due to the influence of Black and Death, simultaneously, that it possesses, and because of our taste for fast songs, they are the ones that best represent the band. These are Storming war anthems and Burning Fantoft. It should be noted that these songs are fast, with riffs of both styles, but they also have weighty symphonic elements, so they are the songs that most represent the style that we have been building over the years.
Speaking of your style, why did they choose it among so many? Describe him.
I told you at the beginning that when the band emerged we did not have Black metal as a priority, but that only lasted a few months, long before our live debut, because we got to know symphonic Black metal and we turned the music to that side, converting ourselves, without knowing it. , in the pioneer band of Black metal in Cuba; we were also the first to use corpse-paint. Many years later, bands began to emerge in our country that followed our example. Some of a purer style than others, but in the end a black metal scene began to arise on the island long after Mephisto was touring all the cities of the country. I think this style was the one that helped us become a band full of atmosphere and symphony, giving it an epic touch.
Is there a band or musician that has been your “guide” or that has influenced your style?
Septic flesh first, then the early Cradle of filth. Dimmu Borgir until now and later other bands like Emperor and some Behemoth. Sure, I’m also going to give you a curious fact. The members of Mephisto have dissimilar and disparate tastes in metal and musically as instrumentalists. The secret that a band has this diverse mix is that along the way, in the dissimilar line-up changes the band has undergone, different people have been inserted, united for a common good and under a single banner. Now, this diversity of influences individually are reflected in the arrangements and the way of playing of each one, so our music can give you a varied flavour with a Black metal cover.
They have had a lot of live experiences, what can you tell me about it?
We are more than anything a stage band. We are not built in a studio and we are something else live. Everything that is recorded has been previously tested live under intense blanks for a long time and in several different places and stages and before different audiences. This strategy gives you time to round out song arrangements by seeing how people react to each song.
Is there a particular genre of music that you are attached to? And if so, which one? How did they get to know it?
Anyone who sees us thinks that we are all radical black metal men and that we live in a dark forest, but no, we have disparate musical tastes individually. I, who am the architect of this project, am more death metal than black metal, although I am always on the dark side of metal, that is, at the most extreme. With respect to the other members, their tastes vary from Black, Thrash, Djent, to progressive metal, blues, jazz and strange animals such as Pink Floyd and Animals as leaders.
The interview is over and the final words are yours. Do you have any words to share with our readers?
More than anything, the fact that it was precisely our turn to teach the world that there is a metal scene on a lost island in the Caribbean called Cuba, and believe me, there are many bands here, of quality, and of different styles. Getting here has been hard, and marked even more by the politics of the country where we live, where this type of music belongs to what the rulers call “The Enemy” We have fought hard to stand out and jump over those obstacles, so that when you listen to our album “Pentafixion”, you know that there is a lot of sweat, blood and tears invested in it.