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September 17, 2019

Interview NEVALRA

Good day NEVALRA! How are you guys doing these days?

To say we’ve been busy would be an understatement. Very pleased with progress.

First of all, please introduce your band and band members to our readers.

I am Scott Eames. I created NEVALRA originally as a one-man-band studio project. All the material was very guitar focused to begin with; as I am a guitarist first and foremost, and only dabble in drums. Once I had a handful of songs together, by sheer chance I met drummer Zach Lindsey. We immediately had some music chemistry. Adding a drummer of his caliber to the project definitely shifted the music from mostly guitar focuses to a more well-rounded experience overall. The songwriting began to open up and allowed me to be even more creative. After recording a song together to get things off and running, we added longtime friend of mine Cody Sprock on bass. Thus, filling out the band as a trio and bringing NEVALRA out of the studio and to the stage.

I’d like to know about the formation of the band. How did you guys meet and all. Also, is there any special story behind the band title?

I met Zach through a mutual friend. Somehow we hadn’t crossed paths to that point, while only living about a 45 minute drive from each other. Zach had played with NEVALRA for a number of years before relocating to Florida to be close to family. A good friend of ours Simon Dorfman (Drawn and Quartered) tracked the drums for “Conjure the Storm”. He absolutely nailed it.

Cody (who actually goes by his last name “Sprock”) and I had played in a prior band together for a few years. When Sprock heard the first single NEVALRA had released he called me up and wanted to join in the band. …so just like that, from a one-man-band to a 3 piece. I was very pleased to have such a strong group ready to hit the stage.
As for the band name, there actually is a special story behind the name. While I had spent a lot of time writing the initial material for the project, I hadn’t settled on a name for it. I actually hadn’t even thrown around any names/titles for it yet. It was all music. During the months I had been writing all these songs I continually had recurring dreams that included awe inspiring, life changing epiphanies & discussions with a mysterious dark entity. We would discuss life’s “big picture” subjects; things that were magnificent and extraordinary, astonishing as well as terrifying.

During these recurring dreams, the entity never mentioned its name. Finally after many months of these discussions, the being identified itself as NEVALRA. At this point, knowing its name was inconsequential to me. I continued to have the recurring dreams. After some time had passed and the songs I had been working on were close to completion; I needed a name for the project. Recalling the name “NEVALRA”, it seemed to make sense. The music was very abstract, as was the title “NEVALRA”.

The most curious part of naming the band; once the project was titled NEVALRA the recurring dreams stopped.

I expect a long reply to this one. Can you please tell us about the concept and lyrical themes of all your previous releases?

Prior releases have a few different conceptual ideas and themes. Some are very directly anti-religion. Some derive from controversial or conspiracy subjects; such as the possibility of alien life, the occult, and ancient myths. It is fun to dig deep into such realms. I am attracted to where the darkness lurks.

The lyrical and conceptual direction I am leaning into is more philosophy now a days. Which the upcoming album “Conjure the Storm” begins to guide the band towards. I really feel like NEVALRA is headed to a more intellectual approach.

Is there any special reason for choosing your music conception?

As a kid I was always very artistic and creative. But it was all visual: drawing, painting and such. As a teenager music began to speak to me. Judas Priest, Aerosmith & Black Sabbath I started to fall into. My parents listen to good music.

But for me it was Metallica that made me want to play, and no longer just listen. Specifically the solo on “Blackened”. That was the moment I felt it, “THAT is what I want to do”.

Meaning, play guitar. And play it fast.
How do you guys manage to create music at all? What challenges do you face while writing and recording an album?
“Creating music is so exciting. It is one of the toughest things to describe honestly. To create something from an idea, then to the guitar, to the band, to the stage, and finally to the listeners ear. It is indescribable. Sometimes when creating a segment I can play it for hours on end. When it comes together, there is no better feeling in the world.

I’d say the most challenging is keeping pace. The music industry can be one of those “what have you done for me lately” businesses. So to constantly have to be writing, and even more so stay touring can be exhausting. The band loves to be progressing and working on the next big project.

I can honestly say that this industry is more work I ever thought it would be, but also even more rewarding. I’ve never shied away from hard work. Sometimes I even feel guilty if I take some time to do something that is pointless (like play a video game) instead of working on music.

Tell us more about your coming album?

I can’t even describe the anticipation I have for NEVALRA’s debut release with M-Theory Audio. Our label has been monumental in shaping this release properly, and I’d like to thank them profusely.

It has been quite the voyage in the writing and rehearsing of the new material. I wanted to pull out all of the stops to usher in a new era for the band. Including introducing the new NEVALRA logo by “Lord of the Logos” Christophe Szpajdel (Belgium/UK), most famous for his work on the iconic Emperor logo. Dan Swanö (Sweden) who is world renowned for his mixing/mastering with bands Opeth, Dissection, Dark Funeral & Marduk. Our great friend Seth Siro Anton (Greece) of Septicflesh agreeing to create the perfect atmosphere for the album cover artwork. We had the drums recorded by Ryan Vincent at Apollo Alternative Audio. Special guest appearances by close friend Mark Kloeppel (Misery Index/Scour) and bandmate Andres Vargas (Thy Antichrist). I can honestly say some of the best in the business have had their hands on this album; and I appreciate all their expertise is helping mold this creation.

I can’t wait for its official release on June 7th. NEVALRA will be hitting the worlds stages with a whole new level of violence and enthusiasm, starting with more than 6 weeks in Europe alongside Carach Angren. One thing I can guarantee… The upcoming album “Conjure the Storm” is going to drop like a BOMB.

You guys are still underground/underrated, although your music has been appreciated by the critics worldwide. What, according to you, is the reason behind it?

Simply put, it is extreme metal. Definitely not music that is generally accepted by the public. I much prefer devout fans over fair-weather followers like other genres tend to attract.

Can you throw some light on your past as musicians?

Sprock (bass) had played in a few modern rock bands leading to our working together. He had always wanted those bands to be heavier and was excited to join a band that was much further on that extremity spectrum than those prior bands.
Simon (drums) plays in Drawn and Quartered and is located in Seattle, WA. NEVALRA is based near Columbia, MO so we do a ton of traveling as you’d expect.

I co-founded some semi-successful metal bands prior to NEVALRA. I feel like those projects gave me the know-how to hit the ground running, so to speak. I also perform as “Wicked One” in black metal band THY ANTICHRIST currently. I definitely love playing with those guys. How often do you get to join one of your favorite black metal bands?
Between NEVALRA & THY ANTICHRIST I stay very busy. Not too busy that a can’t fit in even more music… I absolutely live this stuff.

Tell us about your favorite bands, from whom you gain inspiration. Are you having any favorite artist/band that has emerged from metal/rock soil?

If you were to ask me that years ago I would have listed off 20 bands right away.

At this point, I really love listening to bands who I actually know personally. It is crazy that musicians I hold in such high regard now know me by name, and actually go out of their way to come see me play or to just go have some food someplace while they themselves are on tour near me. Teenage me would have never imagined… A few friends’ music I listen to regularly would be Lord Ahriman & Chaq Mol (Dark Funeral), Mark Kloeppel (Misery Index), Seth, Christos & Krimh (Septicflesh), Tony Lazaro & Brian Werner (Vital Remains), Derek Engemann (Scour/Phil & the Illegals), Kerry King, Gary Holt & Phil Anselmo (obviously of Slayer & Pantera).
Also, playing some of these enormous festivals have brought me back to some music I haven’t listened to in quite some time. After backstage meetings & sharing the stage with bands like Alice in Chains, the Stone Temple Pilots and System of a Down, I had to go back and go through all their material. I love it all.

Another great thing about being on tour is the great music we hear from all over. A lot of these bands give us their albums to check out after the shows. There are a ton of great unknown bands out there that are about to get noticed.

How is the metal scene going in your county? And how do you see the whole American musical evolution?

I think the United States has a great scene. The only thing I would urge the USA fan base to do, is to go see those unknown bands. These bands on the rise will surprise you. USA fans show up in full force when the big headliner bands come through, but tend to not check out the bands right under their nose that are starting to gain some recognition.
American music is damn good. This is a tough industry. Support these bands. Someday they themselves will be headliner material. Your old favorites won’t be around forever.
Tell us, if you have played abroad.
I have played many countries outside the USA with THY ANTICHRIST.
NEVALRA has toured America on a bunch of occasions. We have also played in Puerto Rico. This Tour with Carach Angren will be the first time in Europe. Absolutely looking forward to this expedition.

Are you working on any music videos, might it be a video clip or lyric video?

Yes, NEVALRA is working with our record label on a Music Video and a Lyric Video from the new album. We’re very excited for the world to hear the new music, adding a new dimension using visuals.

Rapid fire section. Just for fun. So just chill, and just type the first thought that comes to your mind when you hear:
* Religion – one of my favorite quotes comes to mind, “I think religion should be treated with ridicule, hatred, and contempt, and I claim that right.” – Christopher Hitchens
* NEVALRA – constructing a legacy.
* Flames of… – …the lake of fire. Lord Lake of Fire. The reason this comes to mind will reveal itself in my future music releases.
* Drugs – an unneeded obstacle.
* Theory Of… – Evolution.

Thanks a lot for your time! It’s really nice to know more about you. Would you like to say anything to your fans and our readers?

The fans of extreme music are the reason I get to do what I love; travel the world playing music. That doesn’t go unnoticed. We look forward to meeting all of you, from the stage and in person. It’s about to get LOUD…