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PRIDE AND FALL (PER WAAGEN)

CONGRATULATIONS FOR A STRONG FUTURE POP ALBUM! COULD YOU PLEASE INTRODUCE YOUR BAND TO THE WORLD? WHAT IS YOUR MUSICAL BACKGROUND? AND WHAT INTERESTS DO YOU HAVE BESIDES MUSIC? Thank you very much for the congratulations. Pride and Fall is a Norwegian act in the EBM/Futurepop genre, consisting of three musicians coming together, having fun while creating good electronic alternative music. Our interests besides music is … none I think… hehe, well seriously, we have some interests besides the music, and it varies a lot, everything from sports to fishing, Simpsons and partying. We’re just normal dudes that really enjoy the goods in music, alternative music. WHY ARE THERE SO MANY SUCCESSFUL ELECTRONIC BANDS IN NORWAY? ANYTHING SPECIAL IN THE AIR? Maybe it’s the fresh air that makes this possible… actually I don’t know, it may have something to do with fastidious listeners which all the time puts pressure on that artists for making good stuff…? We really have some great bands in Norway, talking about Apoptygma Berzerk, and Icon of Coil for example, A-ha, Royksopp, Emperor and more… take the black metal for example. There are many talented and genious metal bands over here. The reason for successive Norwegian bands could be rooted back to all the great support from the local government, building communities for the youth, making it possible for kids to play with instruments instead of drugs. Well, having that said, in many parts of the society the Norwegian local government does a really horrible job, but when it comes to supporting musicians I think Norway is really good rated. Many festivals for the genres, much fun for the dedicated listener. In addition to that it is worth mention that every city and every genre has its own experienced core that works hard to promote and set up gigs for both newcomer and well-experienced bands. NORWAY IS ALSO KNOWN FOR SOME OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL BLACK METAL BANDS. DO YOU HAVE ANY CONTACT (PERSONAL OR MUSICAL) TO THIS GENRE? Yes, as mentioned we have many great black metal bands here in Norway and we do know a bunch people involved with that scene as we’ve been involved as musicians ourselves. We come from the west coast of Norway, a countryside known for good metal bands like Gehenna, Enslaved, Emperor, Forlorn and such. We also have close friends in Theatre of Tragedy and other bands. MANY PEOPLE CALL YOUR STYLE „FUTURE POP“. IS THIS THE TERM YOU WOULD USE YOURSELF TO DESCRIBE YOUR MUSIC? It is ok for us to be categorized as a future pop act, but we think still “with our own style”. It’s funny to think of but we never intended to become a future pop act. It gradually ended up with that after getting feedbacks from labels around calling our product “a good future pop release”, so we are pretty happy with that. It’s OK! YOU SEEM TO HAVE RISEN LIKE PHOENIX FROM THE ASHES WITH YOUR DEBUT. DO YOU HAVE PUBLISHED OTHER STUFF BEFORE UNDER DIFFERENT NAMES? No, we haven’t really published stuff from the earlier projects. We have been more into others projects just for playing around, growing musically. When it came to the project we ended up calling “Pride and Fall”, we first operated under the name “An Evening with Kisses”. This was the darkwave/gothic project runned by Sigve and Svein Joar alone. I joined them and we made some tracks together, did some gigs and had fun. We aimed to do something that matters and decided that this project had to bear fruit. We focused, worked a lot with shaping our sound, and it ended up being signed to three very nice record labels. We are very happy with the current situation, doing interviews, selling records, getting fan mails and stuff. It’s just great, and we really have this feeling that we are “doing something that matters”. People all over the planet are sending us positive emails about how much they appreciated what we do. HOW WAS THE CONTACT MADE BETWEEEN PRIDE AND FALL AND DEPENDENT? We just knew these guys were sugar, haha! Dependent is a well known and respected name in the scene, and of course a label we had interest in! We sent out demos to a lot of companies, and the most important thing was that we wanted to get signed by a record company that had the potential to spread our music worldwide… we wanted to get the music out there. Suddenly we got response from several labels showing their interest in us, and things started rolling. Several labels thought the demo was a brilliant piece of work. Then we worked on some offers and in the end we had the possibility to choose who to work with. Nice stuff. We’re now signed to Dependent, Metropolis and Memento Materia, the biggest actors in the synth/ebm/ scene – I don’t think we could have been more lucky… don’t you think? All three of them working on distributing Pride and Fall all over… In addition to the labels themselves we also have great people working with us. Stefan and the staff at Dependent are really nice people to work with, so we are very satisfied with our choice of record label. It’s like a dream coming true. They are indeed dedicated people. WHICH TECHNICAL EQUIPMENT DO YOU USE? HOW IS THE PROCESS OF SONGWRITING LIKE? DOES EACH BAND MEMBER PARTICIPATE IN THIS PROCESS? Our setup is simple, but it works. We have to get the most out of what we have. We have a couple of virtual analog synths including a sweet little Nord Lead 3. In addition we have a good old Ensoniq SQR, a Waldorf Microwave and smaller tools like Zoom studio FX and some equalizers. A Mackie mixer and a couple of nice mixing monitors. The whole album is built on my computer based Yamaha system, running on a 2,3GHz CPU with plenty of memory. There you have it… this, plus some litres of coffee and we are all up and running. When it comes to song writing I basically write the melodies and the main elements, then me and Sigve stick together building structures and shaping an audible image to the lyrics and sentences, colorizing a dark and somewhat cold overall feeling in the music. About the lyrics, personally I think Sigves lyrics are great. They are indeed inspirable and thoughtful, dark and mysterious messages. Then we have our guitarist Svein Joar who has been really busy the latest year with his studies, so he hasn’t been deeply involved in producing Nephesh. We have also received many questions about Nephesh, such as “hey guys, where’s the guitar??”… but then we say “hey, the guitar is with us live!!” – The reason is that we want to sound different on stage, in other words not too synthetic, keeping a live feel and making the audience experience something that differs some from the album. I think the guitar makes the correct “live” feeling on stage, it rocks things up a lot. WHAT DOES THE TITLE „NEPESH“ REFER TO? Nephesh is an old ancient term for the soul but it has also been used in old translations for “living being”, “man”, “self”, the personality and emotional part of the human mind involving passions and affections. It’s a word we find fitting for the concept of Sigves lyrics aiming on psyche and emotions. It’s really a mystic word as it was used in the old Hebrew testament as a substitute for many things… things concerning the living being. In relation to our debut album it does not have any deep religious or biblical meaning though, we are more found of the psychological meaning and the personality connection of it. Personally I’m very found of theosophic, esotheric and occult reading, so for those who have some knowledge about spiritual development should have read that word before. YOU SEEM TO LIKE „ONE-WORD-SONG-TITLES“. IS THERE A SECRET BEHIND IT OR JUST COINCIDENCE? We believe one-word-song-titles states something immediately. Take “December” : Either you think of something cold, something ending, the 12th month, the end of the year. We think it is important for the listener to think of “something” when reading the title… then we express it musically, in our way. People are different, and different things pop up in the head of the listeners. After reading the title and listening to the music you may have created your own image of the song, and no one can take it away from you. THERE ARE „ONLY“ 6 REGULAR TRACKS ON THE ALBUM AND SOME INTERESTING INSTURMENTALS. IS THERE A SPECIAL CONCEPT BEHIND COMBINING VOCAL AND NON-VOCAL TRACKS? We believe Nephesh is a great record with 10 full tracks. The only thing is that some of them are without vocals, making some variation to the others. The combination is a result of our whish to give the listener a wider experience even if the music is dance floor suitable. We had to break a little bit from the continuously pumping beats (which we of course love), and it is also a opportunity to show that we can do something else that just dance floor beats, take a listen to Serenade of Dreams as an example. „DECEMBER“ IS MY FAVOURITE PIECE OF MUSIC AND I CONSIDER IT THE CENTRAL TRACK OF „NEPESH“. CAN YOU COMMENT ON IT? Thank you very much! December is a nice track that we indeed get much positive feedback on. December has a special meaning. It is a symbol for an ending. December is about a friendship gone bad, better explained: It has something to do with Sigve and some personal stuff. At one point he and a friend started to grow from each other, after being friends for many years. So he has lyrically created a symbolic part in the refrain, when he and his friend meet again in the “afterlife”, “reaching out for each other”. So the name December comes from the month December, as a symbol of something ending. Im personally very happy with Sigves way of writing lyrics, they are somehow diffuse but still with some hidden feelings and messages in them. THERE IS A HIDDEN TRACK ON THE CD. ANY SPECIAL MEANING? I THOUGHT IT COULD HAVE SOMETHING TO DO WITH AMENABARS MOVIE „OPEN YOUR EYES“/ „ABRE LOS OJOS“. The hidden track is the original ending of The Approach. We felt it would be nice to sort of use it as an ending to a rather club pumping upbeat release. It has to do with feelings, just listen to it. It’s the end of a chapter. FUTURE POP IS A VERY LIMITED GENRE I THINK. HOW DO YOU WANT TO EXPAND THE BOUNDARIES OF THIS STYLE IN FUTURE? We want to put some more emotions and strong melodies into it, and at the same time presenting it in a club fitting style. We want to expand the genre a bit with making something that can be recognized as Pride and Fall, at the same time as people thinks it’s great stuff. And the people who like it could hopefully be club heads as well as metal people. DO YOU THINK „MELANCHOLY“ IS A BASIC ELEMENT OF PRIDE AND FALL OR JUST SECONDARY? Well, not exactly as a primary element… Hard kicking beats, a little depressive and some kind of dark mysterious, emotional structures of strings and synthesizers, that would be the best explanation. With melancholy on the top! WHICH OTHER FUTURE POP OR ELECTRONIC ACTS IN GENERAL DO YOU LIKE? Oh… there’s many great electronic acts I personally listen to.. Icon of Coil, Assemblage 23, VNV Nation among others. I also like Trent Reznor and Nine Inch Nails. His work means a lot to me with things like the Downward-releases and Head Like a Hole. And we also have Mesh and Apoptygma Berzerk of course. Frontline Assembly is brilliant, with my favourite FLA piece like HardWired. I also listen to other calmer stuff like A Produce and Robert Rich (Lustmord), Dead Can Dance and all their masterpieces, and not to forget “Blooding Mask” with the album “All the colors of Death”. Genuine! Not so many people have heard about Blooding Mask but it’s worth checking out, it is something special. In addition to electronic music many metal acts keeps my interest, At the Gates, Old Mans Child and Arcturus, Type O’Negative… there are so many great bands out there. WHAT CAN ONE EXPECT OF A PRIDE AND FALL LIVE SHOW? I ASSUME YOU DO NOT HAVE PLAYED TOO MANY SHOWS YET?! There have been some gigs, but so far just inside our country. What you can expect of a Pride and Fall gig is good electronic music presented in a techno-rock’ish way. The latest weeks we have got plenty of offers to play live both around Europe and USA, so we think there will be a few Pride and Fall live performances in the future. We are very happy for the interest in our music, and live performances are what we like best so we will indeed work on this as much as possible. IS IT POSSIBLE TO ENTER NORWEGIAN CHARTS WITH A FUTURE POP RELEASE OR IS THIS STYLE STILL UNDERGROUND? No, I don’t think that is possible. The average listener in Norway doesn’t know these styles, and the Norwegian charts are stuffed with artists like the winners of the “idol” contests, Britney Spears and stuff like that anyway. In Norway EBM and future pop is still very underground as you say. The EBM/futurepop/electronic alternative music scene is also quite small, but luckily we have a good little core of peoples who really is involved with these sorts of music. Many cool peoples in a small scene. WOULD YOU CONSIDER MOVING TO CENTRAL EUROPE TO ENHANCE YOUR CAREER AS MEMBERS OF COVENANT DID? Well, music means a lot in our lives and we certainly put a lot of effort in to it. Things may happen after some time… new possibilities may show up.. who knows? Moving to another country doesn’t make any sense for the moment though, since we are just preparing live shows and working on new material. But as always, time will show… At the moment the band is also about to gather as our live-guitarist Svein Joar is moving back to our city. This will make things more interesting and the whole process of creating music will change to a certain degree. ANY FAMOUS LAST WORDS (AS ZEROMANCER WOULD SAY NOWADAYS) A man of visions said this once, and we definitely agree: „Higher. Always higher.“ Chavez, Georges 1887-1910)

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