by Антон КОРАБЛЕВ // published 09/09/2015
Finnish «laser metal» trio Nightsatan starring in & soundtracking post-apocalyptic sci-fi short film «Nightsatan and the Loops of Doom». We talked with warriors of the wastelands and director CHRZU about pissing girl and visual style of this epic short. Russian version of interview is here.
In the year 2034 Karelia has reduced to deserts. On these plains territorial disputes are settled with sound and music. A pack of synthesizer warriors known as Nightsatan are pursuing a damsel in distress, who has fled her captor into the dunes. They wander into the habitat of an unknown musician, who enslaves his victims in his programmed choir. Nightsatan is challenged by a worthy adversary.
— First, an obligatory question about the meaning of your band name, ‘Nightsatan’.
Mazathoth: I think the name encapsulates well what our band is about. It’s also a nod to Retrosatan, an Argentinian speed metal band.
Wolf-Rami: As a graphic designer I needed a name that had the letter N in both ends to make lightning bolts out of them. The rest is history.
— What is the story behind the formation of your band and what are the origins of your trademark ‘laser metal’ sound?
Inhalator II: We had rehearsed with Wolf-Rami for a while when we decided to ask my roommate at the time, Mazathoth, to to join us because we knew he was something of a synth wizard.
Mazathoth: When I was asked to join an all-electronic band with a «Doom Metal meets Miami Vice» premise, I couldn’t say no.
— Did you intend to incorporate elements of the 80’s aesthetics in your work from the very beginning?
Mazathoth: Absolutely! They came very naturally from all the exposure to 1980’s trash and horror cinema of our childhoods. And the synthesizer music that accompanied them.
Wolf-Rami: We’ve all spent most of our childhood in the 80s and have fond memories of the popculture back then. Old comic books, video games and action movies are an endless source of inspiration for us.
— Could you name some composers or musicians who have influenced you? Is there any specific film, soundtrack or a visual artist that was the main source of inspiration?
Mazathoth: This list could be endless, so I’ll just name three: John Carpenter, Tangerine Dream and Megadeth. And a special mention to films of Enzo G. Castellari.
Inhalator II: John Carpenter’s films and soundtracks, but also stuff by Lucio Fulci, Dario Argento (Goblin soundtracks), and tons of minimal wave synth stuff.
Wolf-Rami: Not much to add to this. Except Slava Tsukerman and his movie Liquid Sky. That movie and it’s soundtrack broke every rule.
— Would you be offended if someone referred to your music as synthpop or synthwave? What do you think about categorization of music through genres?
Mazathoth: No, I don’t really mind how people categorize our music. Music and arts are experienced in such a personal way, so everyone should interpret and enjoy them as they wish.
Wolf-Rami: I’d be quite happy actually. We love synths. We love synthpop. We would be honored to be part of that beautiful scene.
— How did you develop your distinct visual style — those cool helmets, skulls and other paraphernalia? How does it inform your music?
Mazathoth: The visual stylings of our movie characters came from the mind of Chrzu, the movie’s writer and director.
Inhalator II: We do like to dress up and be visual in our live shows with the help of our good friends that happen to be great professionals in their line of work (lights, sound engineering etc.).
Wolf-Rami: Chrzu has also spent his youth looking at trashy movies and reading horror & sci-fi. He’s a perfect partner for us. But the way we look on stage is governed by what we happen to find in second hand shops and using our imagination to the fullest.
— What is the ideal listening environment for people to enjoy your records?
Mazathoth: Driving a Delorean down an empty desert highway.
Inhalator II: Or just lying on your back, your eyes closed, with the headphones on.
Wolf-Rami: I’ll have to back Matti in this. I’m not a big fan of cars, but certain music just sounds its best in that situation. A night drive would be preferable.
— Listening to your tracks from ‘Midnight Laser Warrior’, one gets an impression that your music became softer nowadays, while regaining the overall dark atmosphere. Are you content with your current sound, or do you intend to make some drastic changes?
Mazathoth: We just felt the Loops of Doom soundtrack called for a different sound. Our next project may be something a bit different, you never know until you press Record. Dark and doomy atmospheres will always stay with us though.
Inhalator II: We all get inspired by different type of things, so I think that the stuff that comes up in the future might be somewhat different, but it’ll always sound like Nightsatan.
Wolf-Rami: I have a dream of what our next album should be like, but it’s still a long way off. It’ll be something a little different but still very much Nightsatan. I like to think that we are evolving album by album. Adding new layers little by little.
— Considering your 80’s style post-apocalyptic mood and a certain John Carpenter vibe, it seems a perfect choice for you to release your latest record on Death Waltz, but what was your thought process behind it? And why did you choose to release the album on vinyl as well?
Mazathoth: Svart records had already done the original vinyl release of Loops of Doom, which sold out pretty much instantly. Death Waltz then contacted Svart and asked if they could do a special Record Store Day version of it. We agreed happily, Death Waltz is doing a hell of a job with their re-issues.
Wolf-Rami: It is an absolute honour to be in the company of the masters that Death Waltz have released previously.
— Tell us a bit about your epic short, ‘Night Satan and the Loops of Doom’. How did you come up with this project? And what originated first — the film concept or the music?
Mazathoth: It started as an idea for a music video. But Chrzu, the director somehow managed to get some funding for the project and from there it just grew insanely. We can’t really take any credit for the movie, it was all from Chrzu’s warped and twisted mind. A lot of the music existed before the movie, but some were written especially with the movie and certain scenes in mind.
Inhalator II: Yeah, Chrzu is a good friend of ours, and pretty damn good at what he does, and we were talking of doing a small budget music video with him… He then started to make a screenplay and things started rolling, and pretty soon we had big production company, Finnish Broadcasting Company, Finnish Film Foundation etc. behind us. Crazy.
— And the main question. What did the scene with the pissing warrior girl symbolize in your film?
Chrzu: It means that if you are lucky you can find beauty in the rough, gold in the sand and wet in the desert. Also in this introduction she is in a most vulnerable state tormented by her captor, which causes Inhalator II to act heroic.
— We thank you for finding the time to go through this interview. Maybe you have some final message for our readers?
Mazathoth: have a good time, all the time!
Inhalator II: Check us out if you can, and it would be nice to come tour in your country someday.
Wolf-Rami: Be true to your school.