Interview by Eetu Niskanen
For the beginning, you just released your new album “My Fatal Kiss”, how much work did it take to get it written, recorded and finished?
It took us over a year to write and record “My Fatal Kiss” primarily because we also changed record labels during that process, which is not something you can hurry. But I guess we made the best of the situation, cause when the new deal was finally signed we had already finished about 90% of the songs. We put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into “My Fatal Kiss” not only as far as the songwriting and the actual production is concerned, but we also worked extremely diligently on its artwork so it would reflect the album’s lyrical concept in what we hope turned out to be a creative and thought-inspiring way.
How have you improved as musicians since your latest effort “Bloodangel’s Cry”?
Well, Krypteria is now in its fifth year together, which I consider a testament to the dedication of the four individuals in this group, that being Ji-In, Chris, Frank and myself. Sticking together through these years despite a huge number of setbacks gives us a sense of cohesiveness both musically and personally. We absolutely cherish the opportunity to keep working on our dream. With that in mind I’d say the most significant improvement is us benefiting from our collective experiences as a group both live and in the recording studio over the last couple of years.
How would you explain your music to readers who haven’t heard you?
We are a female-fronted rock/metal band of four who like to combine catchy melodies with heavy rocking riffs and hard driving grooves. Add a bunch of classical and gothic elements such as the occasional Gregorian chants or Ji-In’s delicate piano to the mix and what you hear is a dark, emotional and dramatic kind of high-energy music. Some people call it Gothic Metal, some call it “Rockmantic”, somebody even dubbed it “Sexy Symphonic” – whatever you want to call it, if you like passion, power and emotion all rolled into one you might want to give our music a try. I’d say checking out “My Fatal Kiss” will give you a pretty good idea of what Krypteria stands for.
How long have you been playing drums?
I got my first drumkit at the age of 15 and formed a band right away with a couple of classmates – and, yes, it’s safe to say we weren’t very good. (laughs). A couple of years later I met Chris and Frank and we joined forces for the first time – little did we know then that we would reunite and start Krypteria together more than a decade later.
Who writes the music on Krypteria?
We all do. Everybody brings different ideas to the table and we are lucky to have four people in the band who are able to write both individually as well as in groups of two, three or four. Plus, due to the fact that we spend a lot of time together away from the studio or the tour bus I guess you can say we are a very tight-knit family. We don’t have to deal with any ego issues when it comes to writing songs. That said, discussions about certain parts of the music can still get pretty heated every now and then – however, it never gets personal and always happens in the best interest of our songs.
Who are your biggest influences?
Personally, I’d have to say that Queen had the biggest influence on my development as a youngster trying to become a decent musician. They of course first blew me away with their musical diversity and their unique image. But more importantly Roger Taylor’s drumming and him being one of rock’s greatest background vocalists ever as well as contributing as a songwriter big-time was something I tried to emulate – so I owe trying to become this drummer/singer/songwriter combo to him being a role model in that regard. As a group we all listen to a very wide array of musical styles and we consider ourselves pretty open-minded. If it gives us a kick we appreciate it, be it metal, rock, pop, electronica, classical music or even some obscure avant-garde stuff. And if you listen to our music closely you will probably discover some of the less genre-typical influences we draw from.
Could you tell us something about the other band members?
I guess everybody can see that Ji-In is a very beautiful woman and that she is an amazing performer both in the studio and on stage. What people who haven’t met her don’t know is that she just has the sweetest soul. It may sound like a cliché but to know her is to love her. Plus, she is one heck of a team player and one tough cookie. Chris is a man of conviction, a visionary and Krypteria’s savvy business authority who is not afraid to get in the ring with anybody for the good of the band. Frank not only plays the bass in Krypteria, he is a fantastic singer in his own right, a guy I trust and the ultimate goofball who is not afraid of constantly going the extra mile. And I guess that’s what unifies us, the goal we share, the hopes and dreams we share and everybody being willing to go the extra mile no matter what. We know that us finding each other is very special and that’s why we’ll never let go of it just because the going might get tough once in a while.
There are tons of female fronted rock/metal bands out there, how does Krypteria keep unique?
By staying true to ourselves. This is who and what we are, four individuals working as a team, combining their creativity to make music that is meaningful to us while hoping that we’ll be able to reach out and touch as many people as possible. I am a firm believer that you can’t be truly relevant if you try to chase a certain formula or try to be different for the sake of being different. It either comes naturally and hopefully people will recognize a uniqueness of some sort, or you probably don’t have it in you. See, you can’t force anyone to love you, love has to find you. So basically our fate is in the fans’ hands. It’s up to us, though, to make sure we’re out there so they can find us.
With “Bloodangel’s Cry” you changed your music style a lot from the earlier works, when and how did you decided to go for a rockier style of music?
That’s just part of us evolving as a group. What originally started as a fun studio project between Chris and I only became a full-fledged band when Frank and Ji-In joined us and that’s when things took off. Becoming rougher and edgier just came naturally, because that’s where our hearts are musically. As I mentioned before, we’ve since shared quite a number of different experiences both good and bad.These experiences and all the concerts we played kept shaping us as a band and brought us even closer together. All this combined with our individual musical backgrounds as well as our influences and preferences made this a very natural process and the inevitable next step in the evolution of the entity that is Krypteria.
After four studio albums wouldn’t it be ideal place for a live DVD, what do you think about making one?
Oh, we’d absolutely love to. But right now we are focusing on making sure the world knows about “My Fatal Kiss” first. However, I am pretty sure that a Krypteria DVD will be released in the future, I just don’t see it happen within the next year or so – but, hey, I’ve been wrong before. All I can say is that the four of us would love to do it, so our fans who don’t have the chance to attend a Krypteria concert in person will still be able to see what we are about on stage.
What can we except for Krypteria in the future?
For at least the next 12 months we’ll primarily be playing live not only in Europe but we’ll return to Asia and Latin America as well. We simply love to introduce our music and the band to as many people as possible in a concert setting. Fortunately, we’ve built a reputation for being quite energetic and entertaining on stage which rings especially true for Ji-In – again, she is simply adorable but at showtime she turns into this uncontrollable wildcat. I’m glad I have the best seat in the house to watch this tiny firecracker explode everytime we play live (laughs).
Is there anything readers should know I haven’t asked?
Yep ! That our bass player Frank really is bat-shit crazy ! (laughs) And that I’d love the readers to check out our new album “My Fatal Kiss” at www.krypteria.de. Please let us know what you think of it and come see us live if you can. That’d be awesome and you’re guaranteed to see a band work their butts off to give you a great, great time.
Thanks for the interview!
It was my pleasure, thank you for the opportunity and keep up the great work ! Here’s hoping we’ll see each other at the Femme Metal Festival 2010 😉