In April last year I wrote a post with 10 things that people might not know about our Armada album. The post was quite popular and it seemed like the fans appreciated that kind of information.
So, I thought I’d do the same with Kolossus so here we go:
- Since the studio we recorded Armada in went bankrupt, as you can read more about here, we took over the studio ourselves together with producer Rune Stavnesli. So we spent the studio budget on buying equipment to run our own studio. The same equipment has been used for all Keep Of Kalessin recordings since. The studio was already built, but all equipment was ripped out so we had to install everything from scratch when it comes to studio monitors and other equipment. But even though we used some money to install everything we have saved a lot of money on all albums since this recording.
- Once again, we realized that we had put the bar too high in regards to our own performance. We were struggling and using way more time than anticipated when we started recording. This resulted in less time to mix etc. so the production lacked some power, in my opinion.
- We constantly pushed the releasedate for the album because we never were able to finish the album. The releasedate was pushed so much that we at some point just had to say. Ok, enough is enough. We just need to get this album out there! Kolossus was released on June 6th 2008, but we were talking about pushing it further and into the fall of 2008. However, we decided to have it out before the summer. This stressful push for release resulted in the fact that we weren’t able to do any festivals in 2008. So it wasn’t until 2009, a whole year after the release, that we did the festival run for this album.
- Kolossus is a truly unique album. It doesn’t sound like anything else out there and when I hear the riffs on this album, I often think “wow. did we actually do that?”. I think that Kolossus has some great moments to it and my personal feeling is that it’s still an underrated album in the metal scene. Maybe lacking a bit in production, but the feeling and style of this album is truly unique.
- One of my personal favourites for this album is “Escape the Union”. Which also have one of the better leads I have done.
- If you listen to the bass on this track, you’ll be amazed of all the detail and how cool this bass recording is!! Especially the part from 5:16.
- I had never done sweeping before the Ascendant track. After the song was done and I was listening to it in the studio, I told Rune. “Hey. We need a guitar lead here!”. He agreed and I started testing a little bit. I was listening to the part and I kinda heard what the lead should be like in my head. I then told Rune “Wow. Imagine doing it like this and then going into this part just sweeping before we move on to something like this”. Rune said, “yep, you’re right we HAVE to do that!”. “But I don’t know how to sweep!”, I said. “Well, you gotta learn!”.
At this point we only had a few days until we had to deliver the master and I tried sweeping before, but never really managed to do it. I told Rune that I would need at least 2 weeks to learn the sweeping I wanted on this track, but he told me that I’ll be able to learn it in 2 days! I sat down, started to practice and I nailed the solo in 2 days! 🙂
- As I’ve mentioned in interview and forums before, I think the Ascendant video did just as much harm as good. We had great ideas for this video and it looked really cool when were filming it, however when we got the edit from the director, I said that this was totally not acceptable. I said to the record label that we needed to re-edit the entire video. We did some edits, but due to rush and pressure from the label we released it without doing all the changes I wanted to do. When we released it there was a lot of negative comments and I just regret not holding my ground so I could have gotten a video that I could be proud of. I saw the comments and I understood where they came from because I actually agree with everything they say! The video became way to cheezy and unfortunately that was the result of me crumbling under pressure from the labels. Lesson learned!!
- The middle part of the Kolossus title track is very much inspired by the scene in Xerxes Tent in the movie 300. I remember watching this movie and this scene had just an amazing atmosphere which inspired me greatly to create this title track.
- The cover art and the band photos are inspired by the computer game Oblivion as well as the movie Alexander. Some metal heads think it looks too “soft”, but I think it looks epic and it captures the mood we wanted. And besides it’s definitely something different than your ordinary corpsepaint band! You can probably see the resemblance, but you can also see the difference in budget for a blockbuster movie and a metal band as well! 😉
Hope you like the article and maybe you learned something that you didn’t know.
That ascendant solo is my ALL TIME fav black metal solo. I STILL ADMIRE how epic the sweeps and especially the bends are. That solo really formed me as a guitar player and I still listen To it from time to Time thinkin how awesome it was.
Besides that: if you ever do another greenscreen video like ascendant PLEASE write me a message. I WILL do it WAY better and I would be proud to do it. Really, I’d wank all night if that would come true to do a video for you guys.
I dearly love the epicness goining on in your music. Ascendant and the Devine land are my favorites. I also love the Rising sign.
Anyway, keep it up and big love from Germany!