Das Interview mit Narbeleth Mastermind Dakkar zum aktuellen Album „Svmma Cvm Nox Arcana“ (English Version)

Cuban black metal visionary cross-examined

Artist: Narbeleth

Origin: Havana, Cuba

Genre: Black Metal

Label: Folter Records

Link: https://www.facebook.com/Narbeleth.BlackMetal

Bandmembers:

Vocals, Bass, Guitars – Dakkar
Drums – Vindok

Time For Metal / René W.:
Hello, my dear Dakkar, it’s been seven years since our first and so far last interview. I hope you’re doing well and have adjusted to your new bandmate Vindok, who has been with you since 2017. How did it happen that you changed your solo career to a duet?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
Hello there! A long time indeed! I´m doing quite good thank you. And yes, Vindok has fixed into Narbeleth like a lego piece; and this came in a very natural way. We met in 2014, the first time I came to Europe, and since then we developped a strong friendship. Eventually, I asked him to record the drums for Indomitvs and he agreed. Sometime later I came back to play a couple of shows and I asked him if he wants to take part in this, and since then he has remained Narbeleth´s session drummer. Then I moved permanently to Spain, and we continued rehearsing regularly. Due to his commitment dedication to Narbeleth, I decided it was right to make him an official member.

Time For Metal / René W.:
Besides this change, there are others in Narbeleth: What has stayed the same is the German label Folter Records you stuck with. According to the motto „Never change a running system“ you also started into the fifth album. What convinced you to work with the label again?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
Folter Records trusted Narbeleth to release the first album, bring the band to play in Europe, and give me an opportunity when Narbeleth was almost unknown. Jörg is a very honest man, and we have become good friends. It’s a label that supports its bands in a very transparent and truthful way. I´m very happy with this label and feel extremely comfortable, and I guess they feel the same with Narbeleth. And even when it´s a very old label and has worked with huge bands, it remains faithful to underground; this is very important to me.

Time For Metal / René W.:
Let’s get to Svmma Cvm Nox Arcana. The first thing that catches the eye is the artwork of the record: More intense, more extensive it replaces the older and more simple covers. What is the story behind the design and where does the gateway lead to, which is opened wide by your dark lord?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
I´m so glad you ask this! The cover was made by a great artist and friend of mine, Alba Porta. It is incredible how she can take the essence of your ideas and put it on paper with extreme accuracy. The illustration is the visual dimension of the topics handled in the album. The wanderer adventures itself into that world that lies parallel to our reality. But that wanderer may be the listener who interprets what he is listening to according to his inner world, experiences, and life background and enters into his subjective realm.

Time For Metal / René W.:
Together with Vindok, you bring eight songs in over 40 minutes under the sign of Scandinavia, which shakes the Norwegian flag very strongly. Your adopted home would probably be Norway, or don’t you see your art in connection with the scene from Oslo?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
Absolutely. My main inspiration is the 90´s Scandinavian black metal scene. I´ve always stated that clearly. This is the music that touches me deeply, and the music I wanted to make and therefore I created Narbeleth more than ten years ago.

Time For Metal / René W.:
The songwriting has been significantly adjusted compared to older tracks. What is it like to work together on new material? Did you keep the upper hand in creating the new compositions and Vindok is just your hand-tame marionette?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
I still compose all music and lyrics. I give Vindok a demo, with a programmed drum base, and he works over this, then we rehearse together. Even when I compose all, the energy he injects into the music is a very important and strong element. It is like putting the correct spices in food.

Time For Metal / René W.:
We have talked a lot about other things besides Svmma Cvm Nox Arcana. Now we wanna know more about it. Where are the differences to the four-year-old record Indomitvs? Which is the main theme and which abysses do you want to open for the listeners?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
Obviously, it’s a different album, but the essence is the same. It is a long time, and of course, it will sound different in some way. But Narbeleth is there, and I´m moved by the same feelings since I recorded the Dark Primitive Cult demo. Something that did change is the lyrical theme, so I have been more focused in the last albums around occult and mystic matters, more from a spiritual perception.

Time For Metal / René W.:
Cuba and black metal are still an exotic combination. How has the scene changed in the last seven years, have you been able to build a fanbase? And how do you market an extreme metal album in Havana without getting into trouble with the authorities?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
Luckily yes, Narbeleth has a strong base of followers that understand the message and connect with it, and that is the most important thing; to reach the proper receiver of your art, to connect at the same level.

And contrary to the prevalent idea, there is no political impediment to play extreme metal in Cuba. As long as you don´t enter politics, you have no problem.

Time For Metal / René W.:
The main focus should be the look to Europe. What hopes do you have for the black metal scene over here? When will you try to play the first shows after this extremely affecting time due to the worldwide pandemic?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
Everyone is so looking forward to live shows again! Narbeleth will play as soon as possible. We are already confirmed for the next edition of De Mortem Et Diabolum Festival, to be held next December in Berlin; and it looks that we will also play another show earlier in Germany. I think that when things come back to normal status, the live shows and festivals will gain in force and audience attendance.

Time For Metal / René W.:
Speaking of impairment: How badly did the Covid-19 virus hit Havana? Were there any complicating conditions that negatively impacted the production of Svmma Cvm Nox Arcana?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
I moved to Spain three years ago, and the pandemic did affect the new album, mostly due to the lockdown and the rehearsing impediment for some time. Cuba was way worse than Europe in all aspects, mainly because the country’s economy is based on tourism, and the covid struck severely on this.

Time For Metal / René W.:
Musicians from this genre are often considered closed, which would probably be fatal in your hometown. Do you respond to messages from your followers via social media channels, or isn’t this kind of communication an option?

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
I do respond to every single message from Narbeleth´s followers with absolute diligence. Is the least I can do for someone who spends time listening to my music and spending their hard-earned money buying my albums. They give their support and have all my gratitude.

We are in the digital era, and this is not bad, it’s just that we must take advantage of the positive side of it, and don´t let it ruin our lives. We must be responsible when using these very useful tools, and don´t let them take control over us.

Time For Metal / René W.:
Thank you for an exciting new work entitled Svmma Cvm Nox Arcana, which has shaken my walls at home. However, like last time, the last words belong to you, and you can address them to your followers and our readers.

Narbeleth / Dakkar:
Thanks to you for your time and the interview! Thanks to all Narbeleth followers around the world for the support and the awesome feedback on the new album. We will meet very soon!
Keep the Black Metal Underground

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