Posted on January 05th. 2018
Questionnaire by Officer Nice on behalf of METAL TO INFINITY WEBZINE BELGIUM
Hello, here Rico, aka Officer Nice from the Metal To Infinity webzine. Thank you so much for sending us the albums, full of impressive music. I have some questions for you, hope you’ll like them.
Officer Nice: Stömb is totally unknown band. So please, introduce us to the members and tell us something about the history of the band.
Alex: Hi Rico, first of all, thanks a lot for the interest you show in our project. It’s been a pleasure to read you and now answer your questions.
Stömb was born from the meeting of Aurélien (rhythm guitars), Tom (lead guitars), Olivier (drums), and myself, Alex (bass). We all come from different metal backgrounds.
We met at a specific moment when we were all looking for something different, a new personal experience, and we created Stömb.
We released our first EP ‘Fragment” in April 2013, and then our first album “The Grey” in January 2015. We’ve just released our second EP “Duality” last September.
We’ve had the pleasure to play with amazing bands and perform at festivals such as Metalsphere or Euroblast.
Officer Nice: Stömb is an instrumental band, there is no singer and two albums full of instrumental Metal music. What’s the goal? Why did you choose to play but instrumental albums?
Alex: It just naturally came to us. When we started composing the first tracks of “Fragment”, we were looking for a singer. But despite many auditions with different kind of voices, we never found someone matching perfectly with our expectations.
We decided to keep working on tracks in an instrumental way, still looking for the right person but in the end, we were totally satisfied with the atmosphere we had created. It became clear that we had to keep on working this way.
Officer Nice: It’s not because there is no singer now, there can’t be a singer in the future…. Are there any plans to add some vocals in the future or will Stömb be forever and a day an instrumental band. Tell us why…
Alex: Stömb is a dreamlike music project. Our music is like boarding a ship to dive into your own mind, for an introspective journey full of emotions which will be your very own.
Having a singer would mean having lyrics, and it would frame the context of emotions very precisely. It leaves less space for imagination, and our deepest emotions don’t always need words.
We use samples of voices when we want to support specific intentions and that’s enough for us. Our music can be considered as an original soundtrack, but pictures come from your mind, and are different for everyone.
Maybe we’ll collaborate with singers in the future if we come across good opportunities and appreciate it, like our “Corrosion Juncture” version from Dillon Costello (YouTube), but having a full-time singer into the project is not something we want for now.
Officer Nice: The music you’re performing is not easy at all, not in performing nor in listening. We can label Stömb as a progressive Metal band. Agree? Can you tell us what the sources of inspirations were? Name a few favorite bands as well…
Alex: Yeah, you can consider Stömb as a progressive metal band because the structures of our songs are built this way, but I don’t think this label is really correct. When you think about progressive metal, you immediately think of Dream Theater or Animals as Leaders, who play a very technical music, but actually, we are far from this. It could mislead some people on what they are going to listen to, we’ve already experienced this. I think I would label it more like “post-djent”, a mix between loud and polyrhtythmical structures from modern djent and the aerial and atmospherical part of post-rock, post-hardcore. But this is really tricky and it’s hard for everyone to agree on labels because it depends on personal feelings, experiences and emotions.
We’ve been greatly influenced by bands like Meshuggah, Vildjartha, for the loud, powerful, deep, very rhythmical part, and by Tool and Korn for the ambiances.
Some of our favorite bands would be Meshuggah, Tool, Cult of Luna, Gojira, The Faceless, Textures, Hypno5e, Tesseract.
Officer Nice: The song writing…. Who delivers the ideas and how important is it to create that melancholic sound in any single song?
Alex: Composing is mainly done by Aurélien. He comes up with every track’s ideas, feelings, and textures. Then we work on structures and arrangements together, and then Olivier composes his drum parts from the original idea, to keep the intentions and variations of the songs, but with his own feeling.
Officer Nice: I know you read the review of “Duality”. Agree or disagree?
Alex: We were all greatly touched by your review of “Duality” and we thank you a lot for it. The way you described your perception is very interesting and we are glad when someone get into our music and enjoy it this much.
I can’t really say if I agree or not because it’s all about yourself, about what you felt while listening, but at least, you seem to enjoy it, and that’s the most important thing to us.
Your review is the best way to bring people to discover our project and maybe enjoy it too. I didn’t know Fate Warning so I listened to it and I must say that the comparison is very interesting.
Officer Nice: You gave me the chance to make a review about “The grey” as well. What are the biggest differences, for you, between both albums?
Alex: There are two main differences. The first one is about sound. The sound of “The Grey” is colder, brighter and kind of mechanical on some levels. We wanted something that would be as estranged from humanity as possible. Now, the sound of “Duality” is much more organic because this time, we decided to get into a mental, psychic and spiritual topic, deeply enclosed in human’s soul and conscience. The second point is about construction. “The Grey” was our first full album, and his composition is pretty classical. Every song can be listened for itself, randomly, even though they’re following a logical red line. “Duality” has been written as a single piece song, very progressive, with 6 scales translating the six steps in the evolution of the “monster” hidden in every one of us.
Officer Nice: Help me out: why should people listen to Stömb or in other words…what makes them so special?
Tom: Well, tricky one! I think our songs are like stories you can get into and imagine what happens. It depends on you. We introduce it and lead people on topics, colors, textures and moods, but the listener can be the main character, or just a witness facing it.
There’s a lot of variations, from loud riffs to calm atmospheres, which gives some dynamic to each song, so that everyone looking for some modern metal will find something he likes in them (except for people looking for lyrics, haha).
Officer Nice: “The Grey” is available as a digi-pack, “Duality” as a slip-case. Where can people buy these albums?
Tom: You can listen to our music and purchase the albums (digital and physical versions) on our Bandcamp page: https://stomb.bandcamp.com/
You can also watch our live projections on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/STOMBOfficial/videos
Officer Nice: France has never been a big country in Metal, nevertheless I discover more bands every day (thanks to Dooweet Agency). Can you tell us more about the French metal scène nowadays, especially in Paris?
Tom: France is not one of the most known country for metal, probably because this culture still remains deeply underground. I mean, even if this music is increasingly acknowledged (thanks to promoting labels, bands themselves and most of all metalheads), there is no massive hype for it. But in the end, this is great. There is actually so many bands to discover on the Internet, and anyone interested in it can dig and discover new bands every day. There is a bunch of successful French bands like Gojira, Loudblast, The Algorythm, Uneven Structure, Gorod, Klone, Svart Crown, but we could talk endlessly about smaller bands that exist and create amazing music, such as Eryn Non Dae, Naïve, Atlantis Chronicles, Hypno5e, Lizzard, Kadinja, Weaksaw, Hangman’s Chair…
When we performed at Euroblast in 2015, we were amazed to realize that there were a lot of French bands for a German festival.
Paris has of course a big amount of good metal bands, even if it’s a small community, there is tons of diversity and you can go to gigs every week.
Officer Nice: I have noticed some pictures of live gigs. So, Stömb can be seen on stage. Any plans in the near future to make a tour?
Alex: We are working on “Duality” live part. We use video projection on stage and we are preparing some new stuff for the new songs. We will announce future events and gigs in due time.
Officer Nice: Well, for an instrumental band…. Can you give me your 3 favorite instrumental songs ever?
Aurélien: “Orion” from Metallica’s “Master of Puppets”. Probably the first instrumental track I heard, definitely one of the most mindblowing.
Tom: “Cascade” from Plini’s last album “Handmade cities”. It’s because we have to choose three songs, but all his work is amazing. Very colorful, technical and full of finesse. Handmade cities is like an unforgettable journey.
Alex: “Cafo” from Animal’s As Leaders’s eponymous album. This song is the representation of modern metal music in itself. The sound is powerful, technical and full of emotions at the same time.
Officer Nice: Some last words for our readers?
Stömb: We hope that this interview will give curious people the opportunity to discover us and people who already know us more details about the band’s project and music. If you enjoyed it, stay tuned for the next productions and gigs we are preparing. Thanks a lot!