How high can Final Cry climb
Final Cry is a band rooted in thrash metal, founded in 1989 in Lower Saxony, Germany. In March 2021, the band signed with German label MDD Records to release the follow-up to the 2018 released long player "Zombique". The new album is called "The Ever-Rest", just released so time to ask some questions.
Please give us a short introduction of yourself and the band so we know who we are dealing with.
I am Burghardt, rhythm guitarist and responsible for the main part of composing and lyrics.
Final Cry started in summer 1989 in a little village in Germany. In our early days we were highly influenced by American Thrash Metal, especially out of the Bay Area, but also classic German Thrash Metal Bands like Sodom and Destruction. Over the years (and decades) we adapted additionally some influences of Scandinavian Death and Black Metal. The result of all that is what our music sounds like today - and what you can hear on our new album "The Ever-Rest".
I have to admit that Final Cry is unknown to me but saw you are active since 30 years. How much did the band evolve when started? And what about line-up changes?
Well, we started the band as teenagers at the tender age of 16 - and none of us could play an instrument at the time. We bought some cheap guitars and amplifiers and made some kind of noise. But it was very important to us from the beginning not to be seen as a punk band, so we did everything to appear as "Real Metal" Kids. At first making music was just fun, but with our 2nd demo tape "Stormclouds" we started to work more seriously and focused and we also became better musicians. Since then, in 1997, we released five albums and played many gigs all over Germany. Now with "The Ever-Rest" our sixth album is on the way via MDD Records - and this is something that probably nobody would have guessed in our early days. The band itself has always and continuously evolved throughout the years. Both our musical skills and our arrangements and songwriting has evolved, even after 30 years. I would say "we've grown up" - but for most bands that probably means they've gotten softer. We, on the other hand, seem to get harder and more aggressive from album to album.
Like almost every band we had some line-up changes of course, especially at the drummer and singer position, but the core of Final Cry, the three who started the band, never split up and still play together.
Can you recall what the initial plan was when starting the band? Just friends making music or becoming a professional band? And did it turned out the way you thought it would?
First it was just friends making music - not only making music, but also listening to music, going to concerts and festivals and of course drinking beer together. Between 2008 and 2015 we only met to drink and hardly played a note during those years. No, we never intended to become a professional band, at least not if you mean "success at any price". This band was and is something we do in our free time and especially out of pure passion for music, not for the money. In this sense, everything has developed as we imagined. We're still at it after all these years, we're on fire and I don't think we'd be any of that if it weren't for the fact that passion that bound us is still at the forefront.
Your style can be described as a mix of thrash and melo death metal. Which bands got you into this style? Are there other bands of influence outside the genre of thrash and death?
I would say that in the beginning we were highly influenced by the 2nd and 3rd Albums of Metallica, followed by Testament and Exodus and not to forget Flotsam And Jetsam. In the 1990s we were blasted away by the uprising Swedish Death Metal and bands like Naglfar, Dissection, Gates Of Ishtar and Unanimated; I would say, that Naglfar's "Vittra" was one of the most influential albums for our musical development. But another important impulse came also from Germany: Accept and Running Wild, whose Masterpiece "Branded And Exiled" was a huge inspiration. Outside the genre for me it is the work of Bruce Springsteen - not only the music but the lyrical art of "storytelling" - which was and is very influential.
What are you personal favourite bands to listen to? Maybe also outside the metal genre?
I am still in love with the NWOSDM and especially with Naglfar and Dissection, I have to add Soilwork including the side projects of Björn Strid - what a singer! In the last years most time I listen to "modern" Black Metal, mgła from Poland or canadian stuff like Forteresse or Délétère, from Sweden it is Necrophobic and especially Watain, whose Album "Lawless Darkness" is one of the best of all time.
After several albums and gigs you must have some nice highlights you can share with use. Also don't be afraid to share some goofy anecdotes.
Yes, we had several funny moments, especially in the 1990s we had great times on the festivals and concerts, where we met and partied hard with our heroes - like the guys from Entombed and Destruction, Jon from Dissection or Anders from In Flames. But most of the stories, especially from the nineties, should stay there though haha. Sometimes you can only speak of luck that there were no mobile phones with camera and internet connection at any time yet. I think you can put it this way: We have in our young wild years, no opportunity missed to enjoy the rock'n'roll to the fullest.
The album is called "The Ever-Rest" and obviously has a theme `bout climbing the mountain. What is the fascination about the Everest? Ever been yourself to it or want to go?
"The Ever-Rest" contains a lyrical concept about the history of high-altitude mountaineering since the early 20th century. There were many tries since 1922 to climb the highest mountains and Mount Everest, many failed and died, there were not only heroes. The dramatic events - the first british expeditions with Mallory in the 1920s, the stunning deeds of Reinhold Messner, who climbed the Everest without additive oxygene, the drama of Tony Kurz, who died climbing the Eiger-Nordwand in 1936 - inspired us to told them: heroic stories of struggle, fighting, winning and failing, triumph and death, and of course love and loss and treachery - the best stuff for epic Metal Works. Above all there stands the confrontation of modern man with nature and wilderness, also the wilderness inside, and this has much to do with the actual state of the world and the western societies. But: No, I don't intend to go mountaineering or climbing, I an only the guy who tells the stories.
If you don't climb mountains what do you like to do in your free time? What is your profession when not busy with the band?
As a historicus I am very interested in historical themes, especially from 16th to 19th century, the were the centuries, when our modern world was formed and worked out. Besides I love literature, classics like E. A. Poe, but also modern stuff. When there are no books, I love watching movies. The "Zombique"-album was highly influenced by italian and american horror movies of the early 1980s and the works of Romero and Fulci.
Running the band for 30 years is a long time. How do you keep it fresh? What motivates you to keep on making music? Maybe also managing the band yourself?
The secret to keep a band alive is: never split. We are of course all busy beside the band also with our families and jobs - but meeting in the rehearsal room, playing music and drinking and talking together is like a little break, like a short vacation from daily life. For us, these "time outs" are important to move on and overcome life's hurdles. As long as we are meeting like this, the band will exist. Besides we are all real Metalfreaks who can't live without the Heavy-Metal-Madness, so this will last.
The album will be released on March 18th. How you are going to promote it? And did you already planned a release show? How are the possibilities to play again in this Covid era? And when on stage again what can people expect?
Fortunately we have with MDD Records a label in the back which, concerning the promotion of the album, does an unbelievably good job so far and supports us. There is, for example, this limited box set, which MDD has come up with and which is only available there and in the Nuclear Blast mailorder. The press kit has also been sent out by Against PR and The Metallist PR to countless magazine blogs and radio stations around the world, so we've already had more radio airplay and interviews about the new album than probably in the last 20 years combined. There will also be 2-3 special promotions for the album launch like exclusive premieres and radio specials and MDD is running ads in many print magazines around the world promoting our album.
We are also planning some gigs in April and May 2022 and hope they will happen. Right now, things are looking good. We can't wait to play the Ever-Rest stuff live and be back on tour. After all, our last show was in March 2020 and it's about time people see us with our new singer, who has been with us for over a year now. You can definitely expect an energetic live show!
We are also looking forward to the summer festivals we go to ourselves as visitors to get in touch with our brothers and sisters and present our new album to them there on parking lots and camping grounds.
Like most of us we are happy Covid restrictions are going away. What did you miss the most the last two years? And what is the first thing you will do when we are 'free' again?
The pandemic has actually helped us in several ways so far: We lost our singer early last year, and that opened the way to our new singer Kai; without him, "The Ever-Rest" wouldn't have happened. Covid also allowed us to fully concentrate on working on this album, since there were no gigs and festivals.
These are also the things we probably miss the most. Concerts, festivals, parties with friends and other metalheads. But the first thing we will do ourselves is: going on stage and performing our new stuff live.
How did the writing and recording go for "The Ever-Rest"? What did you different compared to "Zombique"? What is your happiest feeling about the album, how it turned out?
Because of the pandemic we were forced to work on the songs, doing the compositions and arrangements in a digital way over the internet, without meeting. That was new and strange, but it worked. Then the recording process in Rhauderfehn, a litte village in East Frisia, which is a kind of desert region in Germany, was very "laid back" and effective, we had a good mood and the best sound we ever had. The big difference compared to "Zombique" was, that this time we had a "real" singer, who did the vocal arrangements and made a very professionell and stunning job.
The happiest feeling about how the album turned out is that we managed to forge the complexity of our roots into one big whole. I think it's our most layered album yet. There are monks and polyphonic epic choirs for the first time on a Final Cry album thanks to our guest vocalists, and overall I'm very happy with how we managed to convey this dark, cold, frosty yet atmospheric mood over everything. And of course the development around the release itself. That we would release this album in this way and to this extent on an established label was not even remotely foreseeable in January of last year.
Hope the people will like the new album and it don't take another 4 years to release something new. Maybe you want to add some promotion, feel free.
Burghardt: "The Ever-Rest" contains not only an adventurous journey to the highest mountains and into the beckoning wilderness, it is also the best blend of epic and monumental Heavy Metal Hymns spiced with Melodic Death Metal vibes and frosty Black Metal notes, while untamed 80s-Thrash Metal tunes enter the battlefield. This is a Must, not only for Thrashheads but for all lovers of aggressive but melodic Metalmusic without borders. Give it a try - it will be available as CD, Vinyl and of course on all download and streaming platforms worldwide.
Apr 4, 2022