Hails, Sebas! The first question is a usual one, but At dawn aren’t very well-known yet, so… Could you tell us how was At Dawn born? Who are the members, and what do they play?
The foundators of the band are Fede (rhythmic guitar), Jonas (bass), Xavier (drums), who used to play on Sin Perdon, along with a singer who left, I am not sure on the reasons why, but they called me. Before singing at At Dawn I was at El Llanto de Los Muertos, I rehearsed with them and finally they picked me up to sing with them.
As far as I know, you have recorded a 5-tracks demo. Can you tell us where and how? How is it called, and which songs do appear on the demo?
Well, we recorded a home demo on the rehearsal room; we were lended a 8-tracks and we recorded just to have a reference, a starting point. With this demo we went to the clubs to know if they allowed us to play, we also gave it to some radio-stations, etc… The songs that compose the demo are an intro and an outro both made by keyboards. The intro is called “Twilight”, afterwards come “Light Fades”, “The Forest Path”, “Burning Luxury” and “Black Soul Consecration”.
Many bands do not feel very satisfied with their early recordings because the sound doesn’t use to be as one would wish… Are you satisfied with this recording?
As it is a home demo, the sound is not very good but you can listen to it, neither did we move it not to make people have a wrong idea on the band’s sound.
We all know how hard is for an underground band to move and become well-known. With the demo on your hands, what do you plan to do to promote it? (Mags, zines, radio programs, labels…) Is your demo on sell? How can fans get it?
The demo is not on sell, but if anyone asked us to give him one we did as long as we copied several demos as presentation. We sent a few copies to labels out of Spain but with no pretension. If anyone wants a copy then dial (977) 23 49 84 and we send it then to them. [Note: telephone number inside Spain; the snail-mail address is provided at the bottom of the interview – ed!)
Let’s speak on your music. Could you tell us how do you compose? Is there a composer or everybody composes? Do you write the music firstwards and then the lyrics or viceversa?
We have no formula, we simply play rhythms, to fix them and it goes advancing. The major composer is Jose, but if any of us has a good idea then we add it. The lyrics thing is done by Fede and me. The order doesn’t mind, if we have a good poem then we add the music or back the same.
Still on the lyrics… What inspires you to compose your songs? It seems that for most of the Doom bands (Anathema, My Dying Bride, Type O’Negative…) the sadness, the darkness, the decadence are outstanding sources of inspiration. Do they also apply to At Dawn?
We have no inspiration’s basis; I guess every song is a mood, an experience or something that has interested us. I like to analyze the human behaviour, a bit psychologically, with an epic touch. I don’ t know, it depends on the moment you start writing. Not necessarialy a Doom band must speak of sadness.
Let’s change the topic a bit:the lyrics. Who does write them? In which language do you write? Why? What do your lyrics speak about?
Fede and me write the lyrics. Topics are various, varying from the sense of life till the reason why of the fights between human beings…
Many extreme Metal bands deal in their lyrics with also extreme topics. Do you so so? What are your views on Satanism? Do you think that the bands that show themselves as satanic are honest or it is just image?
There may be bands that really feel that way but other ones may be into it just for trend or attempting to be more extreme than the others. Satanism is a thing that doesn’t apply to me, but I am not saying that I don’t like some bands which are satanic.
By the way we speak on extreme things, Black Metal has become famous by the happenings that took place in Norway (murders, church arsons, sects…) We have spoken more than needed, but now, with things more tranquil, and viewing them from the distance, what is your opinion on it all?
I think that burning down churches is bringing things too far. You can shit on whoever but killing a person means being a bit sick.
Not leaving extreme Metal, some bands like norwegian Burzum or Darkthrone, greeks Legion Of Doom or polish Graveland are show themselves truly nazis and spread racist theories through their music and lyrics. What do you think? Do you think music must bring a message?
Let’s step back to more concrete topics. You’re from Tarragona, How is the local scene like and the catalan / spanish one in general; I mean bands, zines, concerts, fans…
A few years ago the scene was very well; there were bands, people used to edit zines, there were more concerts but now there are no locals to play at, there aren’t many zines; there are bands but less than used to, and that’s all due to the fact that there are less fans into extreme music; therefore there are less gigs, it is more difficult to put your hands on specialized mags; the most important thing is the interested people’s support. People just want to see big bands and don’t care for the local area’s bands. Anyway there is people who still cares and attends the gigs performed by youngster bands.
Let’s go back to At Dawn’s music. I know that lastly you’ve come through some line-up changes. The keyboard player, the bassist…
We had a keyboard player, Andreu, who was in the band for a year more or less, but the music we played didn’t interest him; he was into another kind of music, ambient, AOR, etc… but he was with us just because he could play… till one day he got tired and left. By the moment we have no keyboardist. Yes, I play the bass now.
Finally… the last question. What are your future plans? Will we see some sunny day At Dawn headlining Donington (Hehehe)?
Well, we want to record a demo with new songs but more professionally to distribute it to labels. As far as Donington isd concerned… …hopefully we will!!!
Sebastian Rufat Lopez
Bloc Alt Penedes, esc. C, 1 F
St. Pere i St. Pau
Catalunya / SPAIN