Darkwave: the whats, the whys and the hows

Darkwave is my experimental music project built on the backbone of old-school thrash metal riffs, with an outlook to a wide variety of musical scenes. Despite its intimate connections with thrash metal, the musical dynamics I try to accomplish in Darkwave often deviates from the classical concept of the genre (e.g. the rapid, catching tempo generated by tight rhythmicity), and incorporates elements with significantly different tonal and emotional characteristics than those of thrash metal, ranging from power, doom or symphonic metal themes to progressive, electronic or even jazz elements.

Such a diverse mixture of different styles is seldom intentional, but rather a mixture of instinctual and intentional elements reflecting the character of the composer and the impact of influences shaping the songwriting process. Balancing on the razor-sharp edge between these domains of human consciousness, I think it’s always revealing to indentify the composer’s primary influences to understand the core philosophy behind the final product. Despite their essential innervation with thrash metal, my main influences come from somewhere far beyond, from the distant realms of hard rock, NWOBHM (New Wave of British Heavy Metal), and – in certain extent – from classical (or even gregorian) music. I see it as some kind of an evolutionary process: first it was the intensity, then the complexity of the music that grabbed my attention and put a significant emphasis on my way of looking at all things music. Regarding the metal frontrunners, the complexity of the Shermann-Denner duo’s guitarwork as well as the dark, monumental, epic atmosphere of Tony Iommi‘s musical skyscrapers clearly shaped my personal attitude to music. Still, the artistic genius of the late Jon Lord (who aimed at building bridges between “old” and “new”, traditional and modern) was that characteristical influence that put its almost deterministic mark on my musical taste and creations. I started to listen to bands that somehow unite various territories of the world of music: it felt amazing to listen to Mekong Delta’s Suite for Group and Orchestra or the jazz-metal fusions by Atheist until the point that I could finally identify a third essential element besides intensity and complexity: the gloomy, epic, emotional (sometimes sad) and monumental atmosphere: something that I could find so often not only in music, but also in my favorite books and poems. And this is that exact point, where the intentional and instinctual motifs become somewhat indistinguishable from each other, and form a distinct entity of thoughts, feelings, desires and aims that might be characterized as my personal attitude to music, art – and in general, life.

It’s not that hard to grip the essence of that attitude. I tend to agree with G. K. Chesterton‘s paradoxical jeremiad from 1905 on the loss of universals (“…we are more and more to discuss details in art, politics, literature… Everything matters — except everything.“) and accept that it’s always the core philosophy behind art (or “everything“…) that we must understand, if we ever want to grab the creator’s personality that is mirrored in the final product. The secondary details in composition, performance or production are merely consequences of this primary attitude or basic approach behind the creative process. My primary aim with Darkwave has always been (and will ever be) nothing else but to formulate, express and transmit feelings and thoughts without words, while constantly realizing that there exists nothing more suitable to facilitate this communication between human souls than music itself.

When words fail, music speaks.”

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