Interview with Albert Melear
Hello and Welcome to Acier Doux Metalzine Tunisia , Alright, you guys are more obscure than most Folk Symphonic Metal bands out there and I couldn’t find much about you, so we’ll go with some stuff to introduce the band… You guys have been around Since 2006 . How did Crown of Sorrow get started ?
Technically this project began in 2006 under the name The Blasted Heath. Then it was only myself (Albert, vocals/guitar) and I was essentially doing everything. A few extremely rough demos were hobbled together but nothing was ever released. The project was put on hold because I started hanging out with a thrash guitarist. We formed a thrash outfit called Resurrection with him on guitar and myself on drums. Multiple lineup changes later in 2012—with me having moved to bass at this point—I parted ways with them due to, among other reasons, differences of opinion on the musical direction we should take. I had been somewhat dissatisfied before the part so I had begun revising my older material and writing new tunes as well. That’s more or less when Crown of Sorrow in its current form was born.
Who came up with the band’s name ? It’s nice to see not only a name that hasn’t been used 20 times already, but is also an eye catcher… I mean…” Crown Of Sorrow “, one cannot be indifferent when they see a name like that !
The band’s name comes from a quote by English poet Alfred Lord Tennyson: “…for sorrow’s crown of sorrow is remembering happier things.” I think it fits both with the music and lyrics.
There’s some Black Metal melodies influence in the band music . What are the members’ music background, and how does it “Affect” the songwriting ? Is this a team effort, or are there only one or two main songwriters ?
For myself, I got into Death and Black Metal early on later into power and folk metal before plunging into the abyss of Doom and Sludge Metal. I tend to draw from a lot of different places. Our drummer Aaron has a background in both Thrash and progressive—hell of combination, eh? Our bassist Daniel is mainly into more brutal death and extreme oriented Metal while our lead guitar player, Cody, has a lot of melodic death influence. For the first album, it was all written when it was just myself and produced as a two piece. Adding another guitarist has really given the older songs a new more intricate feel because there is lot more to work with. That’s what’s been really fun about our practices and live shows is hearing it evolve even more. I still do most of the basic songwriting myself, but once the structure is down we work on filling it out more as a unit.
You released an Album “ Exile “ What’s good for you in this kind of formats ? Do you prefer to selfrelease? Tell us more about the forthcoming New release ?
We released it digital and also on CD. I love CDs. I still collect them. Everyone around me is obsessed with vinyl and I still buy CDs. Don’t get me wrong, I like vinyl too and hope that in the future our releases will also be pressed on vinyl. Our drummer is actually a vinyl junky, he’s got hundreds. The next release that we are currently working on will have two brand new songs plus we’re hoping to get a couple live cuts as well. As far as the self-release thing, that was done out of necessity. I wanted to get music out there.
Tell us something interesting about Crown Of Sorrow’s lyrics ?
Almost all of the lyrics I write are based on personal experiences. Though they may be dressed in metaphors, most of them begin there. There is also a small minority of songs that are more or less about stories and such I enjoy.
It seems your songs are more melodic and a quite rawer sound that could remind of some European Folk Symphonic Metal from the past ! Am I right and is this your goal to become more brutal and heavy Or is it just a natural evolution than the first Demo that happens because The more you play, the better you play… The more you play, the better the feeling comes… The better the feeling comes, the deeper it comes from the guts…? Was there a clear goal when you created the band, or was it “just” to play Metal with the ?
My goal in mind when beginning this project was to play music and stop freaking out over subgenres. I’ve been in bands before where someone might bring a great idea or riff to the table but we had to forgo it because it wasn’t Thrash Metal or Black Metal or whatever enough. The same people of course would then use that same idea for their side project of another metal subgenre. I find that illogical. Why would I write Death Metal songs for a Death Metal band, then have doom metal songs for a doom metal band because some unwritten rule says I have to keep every subgenre purposely separate and pure ? That is dumb. Crown of Sorrow is music that takes Mwhatever form the inspiration brings. I listen to all different kinds of Metal and this am influenced by different types. This is just what comes out when you turn the ideological filter off.
Do you think original/ different Folk Symphonic Metal can be good ? Since you’re American , I’m sure you got an overdose of melodic plastic metal with trolls and dancing tiny angels everywhere, so this would explain why your music is uncompromisingly good ?
I play music because I like playing music. It fulfills me. There are a lot of acts out there in all types of music that may have other motivations and their art certainly reflects it. There’s plenty of good music anywhere, especially here in Atlanta, you just have to look a little harder.
Did you play gigs ? How does Crown Of Sorrow sound in real conditions, I mean during live, or rehearsals, compared to the recordings ?
We’ve played a few gigs within the last year. This started as a studio project first so practicing as a band and then playing live has been almost surreal. Each one of us has worked hard and I’m glad to have the people I have around me. With a second guitar, our songs have become more intricate when played live.
What are your future projects ? Is there something special in line ? Tell us all we need to know ?… Do you think it will take some time before the next release !!
Well, we’re hoping to get an EP out by the end of the year, and the second full length next year. We’re sitting on a mountain of fresh material.
Interviewer : Med Manef Slama