Interview by Marc “Peston” Sels
Anabioz is a Russian band from Oktyabrsky in the republic of Bashkortostan. (for those who don’t know where Bashkortostan is, look it up, you lazy bastards!!). They play, according to the Encyclopaedia Metallum folk/doom/death metal. For me they just play good metal, you can listen to it on their latest album “…The Light” (2010) The following interview is with singer/violinplayer Olga.
Can you introduce the bandmembers to us (musical influences, professional occupations…)?
The band’s line-up is: Olga – vocal, violin; Anton – guitar, vocal; Damir – guitar; Dmitry – bass; Alexander – drums. We’re all into different kinds of music. For example, I like folk and viking metal, Damir is into progressive and progressive/death metal, Dmitry is into doom-metal and sympho-metal and Alexander and Anton are listening to everything from math-metal and grindcore to jazz. All members of our band have a work, excluding me – I’m sitting at home with my baby. Damir and Dmitry are electrical engineers, Alexander and Anton are working at musical stores.
How’s the Russian metalscene? Any interesting new bands?
In terms of development of metal-scene, Russia is still behind Europe. There are certain moves ahead, though. Several interesting new bands I was listening to in the last time – Der Galgen, Fangorn, Grai (all are playing folk-metal), Armaga (dark-metal), Eclipse Hunter (prog-power metal).
Is there a special meaning in the band’s name?
We got this name as a some kind of heritage. Earlier Anabioz consisted of totally different people playing different music. The band was reborn in 2003, the musicians of former line-up were gone and the new line-up was completed in 2006. We wanted to change the name a few years ago, but at that moment our band was confirmed on several festivals, and we decided to stay with this name.
Is there, for you personally, a big difference between touring and recording? And what do you prefer?
These are two sides of life of every musical formation, and they are equally important and interesting! I can’t choose just one of them.
Do the recent terrorist attacks on the Moscow metro have any influence on the life as a musician in Russia?
We live far away from Moscow and we know about these terrible events from news on TV. You can’t absolutely defend yourself from terrorism, you know. People have to use metro every day, they just can’t not use it. As far as I know, life keeps flowing its usual way – and for russian musicians too.
Do you read your album reviews in mags and webzines? If you do, do they have any impact on you or the other bandmembers?
Yes, I try to read all reviews and opinions I can get. Of course, we listen to people’s responses about our music, but we keep moving on our own way. For example, nothing and no one can force us to change our style drastically.
Haven’t you ever thought – Why didn’t I become a waitress?
Funny question! No, I’ve never thought about it! I got a job as a waitress when I was 18, though, but I’ve worked there just one day. It isn’t my cup of tea, you see!
How would you present Anabioz to someone who haven’t heard of the band?
I’d say, we play heavy but melodic music with violin and the stirring folk motives! But I doubt I can name some really similar bands, maybe just the distant similarities… Amorphis, Eluveitie…
Any favourite violin players/componists ? I myself like Paganini. Did you have a classical schooling?
Paganini is a greatest violin player! Also I really admire D.Oistrakh, L.Kogan. My favourive composers are Vivaldi, Mozart and Bach. Also, what I like very much is the violin in celtic music. I have finished musical school in violin class.
How’s the new CD selling?
New album is selling just for a few days at this moment, and we even didn’t touch it with our own hands! So I can’t tell you anything about the sales numbers.
After the release of a CD, most bands start a promo-tour. Can we expect you on the European stages this summer?
I have a doubt about this summer. We’re going to send our new album to the foreign labels. Maybe in the next year we’ll have an opportunity to play at some European festival! Now we’re making the gigs here and there in Russia, maybe in some time we’ll make a little tour in Ukraine.
You (the band) describe your music as folk metal / doom / death. Isn’t that a bit confusing for the fans?
It’s the most accurate description of music we are playing. We have already thought about some way to shorten it, but decided to not change it.
Which book, CD, comic, movie would you take with you when they dropped you on a deserted island ? And can you give us a short explanation why?
Book – “The Lord of the Rings”, it’s a fantasy classic, I’ll never get bored with it! CD – Amorphis, I think. These guys always make the interesting and qualitative music, with a lot to learn for us! If I could take several CDs, not just one, I would take Blind Guardian, Turisas, My Dying Bride and Epica and be pretty happy! There are many movies that I like… I think I would take “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and watch it from time to time. It’s a timeless classic, just like “Knocking on Heaven’s Door”.
Any “famous last words”?
I wish all the best for your magazine, and real spring mood and more of good music for your readers! I hope you’ll like our new album! So far so good.I hope the band has got a great future, they deserve it, and I hope to hear from them very soon with more new, fantastic material.