Root celebrate 25 years of dark metal
After almost 25 years together, the Black/ Dark Metal band Root have constantly produced success after success, and their latest album, ‘Heritage,’ brings forth the exciting statement that they are ‘here to stay.’ Despite many progressions over the year in sound, their work has always been steady and their purpose has never wavered. Avoiding the hubbub of catering to industry and constant fan criticism, Root is one of those rare bands that will always try to stay ‘true’ to themselves and what they feel is best for their music. If you don’t believe me, just read the interview.
Hails from BRUTALISM and thanks for the chance to do this interview. You guys have been around for a long time. How’s it feel to just be finishing up with year 23 or so?
23?? It has actually been 25 years now which is such a beautiful feeling :o)
Your latest album, ‘Heritage Of Satan,’ features a very groovy black n’ roll, or dark metal sound as some might call it. Originally you used to be more in the vein of black metal like Bathory or Venom; when did you decide to change your styles officially?
We have always played what we want to play no matter about the styles. Each record of ours is totally different and also been marked or reviewed with a different genre. It's nice to know that we are not sticking at the same place whole life.
Do you believe ‘Heritage…’ is your most eclectic offering to date, or is it just continuing a sound that you’ve become comfortable with in the last few years?
‘Heritage...’ is present for us and our fans to celebrate 25 years of Root. We did not think about the particular sound or style. We just thought about the past 25 years and recorded it.
What made the band really want to follow black metal in the first place, compared to all the other genres?
As I said we were not care about the kind of genre we play. Things always move forward with the arrival of new musicians to the band. Just listen to our other projects (Equirhodont, Doomy Ballads) and you'll be amazed at what else we can play. :-)
Any particular theme that you wanted to experiment with on the new album or is there a running theme of ‘devilishness’ and ‘darkness’ meant to be on all of Root’s work?
There is no need to look for something that does not exist. Satan just got pissed off, destroyed the world and brought his Son to the throne. I like to play with imagination and words. And besides this, it is been a long time mankind deserves to be kicked into their asses. I chose this task for Satan himself. This is not a new experiment.
Do you feel the same about ‘black metal’ ideology today as you did when the band started out, or has shifting perspectives given new priorities?
I feel the same way. I just did not show that in public for few years. And the priorities are still the same. Sooner or later everyone ends up at our Hell and then we'll laugh. :-)
Ironically enough, when viewing places like Encyclopedia Metallum and looking at your discography with reviews and notes, popularity seemed to go down right around your shift in sound. Did you notice any strong backlash from the fans when you made your official change and did that ever influence a possible wish to revert to an older form, or do you ignore such things?
Noooo ... we fuck up if our popularity goes up or down. But, we play music because we enjoy it. It is not our daily job. Other great bands have to watch and care for their popularity but we do not have to. And that is why we may not be affected by this “handicap”. Do you think we commit suicide if some scribbler gives us 2 / 10 or 35/100? We do not care. :-) And this is our advantage.
So now that the new album is out and metal fans are hungry for it, what is next on the list for Root? Any tours coming up at all…?
We do not think that there is any tour in a short time. And it's a bit boring. Just bus, hall, bus, hall, bus, hall... again and again. If somebody will offer a good amount of money we would think about it. And we have enough single concerts anyway so fans can enjoy us there.
With the music world changing as it is and everything becoming downloadable, do you find touring more and more demanding as a way of supporting Root when almost anyone can just hijack an album that was worked so hard on, making CDs pretty much about to go the way of the cassette tape?
Concerts have been and should always be the most important events for each band. At least we certainly perceive it this way and I think our fans to do so as well. This is about direct contact between band and fans. They want to see personally those maniacs whose records they listen to.
Let’s say you ever encountered someone who blatantly admits ripping you off by downloading your latest album, but says that he or she really enjoys it and thinks you’ve got a special sound that made them appreciate black metal for the first time. How would you react to that?
We meet a lot of people you mentioned and we are very pleased that we catch another new fan with our music even though it is via Internet.
After being around for so long, Root has probably seen black metal evolve from its core sound- to bands like Emperor, Cradle of Filth, or even Satyricon- all with their own sound and idea. Did you ever expect it to go farther than what you might have heard early on with Bathory or even Dark Throne?
As I said it before we create the sound we want. We do not care to whom we are compared. Why do you still need to compare someone to anyone else?? I do not understand it. We are simply ROOT with our sound and lyrics :-)
Do you think the genre has evolved for the better with how people are embracing its ideologies?
Everything is developing which is natural. Music, people, ideologies ... but believe me that we do not care about ideologies. Music merges together which cannot be said about people. People are increasingly divided. It will end up the wrong way.
Last question: your fans are the heart of your engine, and most likely you’ve gained a few and lost a few. Has there been anything in particular a fan has done that really got the bands spirits up and let them know they were doing something right, such as either in a letter, something said after a show, etc.
Every record of ours has its fans. I do not think we lost them they rather growing up. But there are others to come so it is actually a cycle of life. We are receiving various kind of feedback from fans : we read it either on bandzone or myspace web sites. I remember one girl wrote me that our recordings have helped her solve the personal problems in school with schoolmates (bullying)... I was very happy.
That is excellent! Again, thanks for answering the questions and excellent work on ‘Heritage.’ It’s become a personal favorite on the list.
I am glad you enjoy our ‘Heritage’ album. Thank you for the interview, say hallo to all of your readers and STAY PROUD!!!