Tell us about your new album, ‘L’Aube Du Declin’!
Hails ! So “L’Aube du Déclin” (French for “the dawn of decline”) was released on 31st January 2013 through French labels Ancestrale and Mortis Humanae. It is composed of 9 tracks entirely sung in French and this is actually our first full-length effort.
What is the history of the band, its members, etc.? Give us, if you will, some background! When, where and why did the band form?
I started Neptrecus as a one-man band in early 2011. I spent a few months composing 8 of the 9 songs featured on the album. In the meantime, Claiomh joined the project as vocalist but he finally decided not to sing and just to write the lyrics. In September/October 2011, Arawn (guitar), Loki (bass) and Aharon (drums) joined Neptrecus and we began rehearsing the songs in order to perform concerts. However, the adventure went on without Loki and Aharon from beginning of 2012. Then I recruited Morne (bass) and Lagodas (drums) and we recorded the “L’Aube du Déclin” album during Summer 2012 while we were going on with rehearsals. We performed our first gig in Paris on 27th January. Now Morne has just left the band, our new bassist should be announced soon.
Where is the band from? How has your local area influenced your sound? Why?
We rehearse in Paris but every member lives in a different area in or around Paris. Living in this big urban area influenced us insofar as it led to some disgust of the modern world and its decadence. It enhanced some wrath in us and thus some violence, brutality…Black Metal is actually the best way for us to express what we think of this dying Western world. But on the contrary, being a French band also influenced us in a positive way, I mean: it is a great pride to be French and to sing (in French, of course !) the greatness of this country and its history and culture.
How do you describe your music? Why?
Well, to us it’s just Black Metal…We don’t think a lot of how we’re going to call our music ! However, we put the slogan “Black Metal de France” on each of our records, so I think it explains it all: just black metal music deeply influenced by French culture. Also, our labels describe our music as “epic”, “warlike”…I think they’re quite right hehe.
The material on ‘L’Aube Du Decline’ is very powerful, well produced and makes a great impression for a debut full length! How long was the material in writing and recording stages?
Thanks ! So it took 2 years from the very beginning of the writing process to the final release of the album. As I said, 8 of the 9 songs featured on the album were composed in 2011. I later composed the 9th song, “Au Royaume de Neustrie” and decided to include it on the CD (it was basically just an instrumental song). The recording process took 3 months: we recorded the vocals at Hybreed Studios (France), all of the remaining instruments, mixing and mastering were then done by Weddir (leader of French band Moonreich). I think he did a great job !
What are some of the more memorable events that led up to the album’s release? Was it more enjoyable for the band to write rather than record or…?
That’s a good question…I think that meeting Weddir was a determining event in the recording process. In early 2012 I didn’t even know when we would be able to record the album and then he proposed us to record it… Besides that, I think Ancestrale’s interest in Neptrecus and the confidence we had in Mortis Humanae (they released our debut demo) allowed us to release “L’Aube du Déclin”. I think the recording process was more enjoyable for the whole band than the writing process.
How are songs written in Neptrecus? Is there a sole songwriter? As a group?
I am actually the only songwriter in Neptrecus. I compose all the music while Claiomh writes all the lyrics. I like working this way and it may be the best for Neptrecus. But if another member of the band comes up with an interesting idea, I take it into consideration.
What about the recording process? How do the songs manifest themselves onto a fixed media? The production on ‘L’Aube Du Declin’ was quite clear and intelligible.
We only record a song when it’s totally finished. However, I never have any idea of how it’s going to sound like before it is recorded. Actually, I don’t have any “production plan” before the recording process…we actually just begin the recording and then adjust the sound and settings until it sounds good to us !
What other projects, if any, are members of Neptrecus involved in that we may be familiar with?
Guitarist Arawn also plays in Moonreich, Lagodas is also member of French bands Cave Growl and Ishtar. As for me, Neptrecus is my only band.
I understand ‘L’Aube Du Declin’ has a nice 8 page booklet and comes with a patch. Are the lyrics included? Who is responsible for the album art and how does it fit your message?
Yes, the patch actually comes in a limited pack that includes the CD + the patch. And yes, all the lyrics and credits are included in the booklet. We actually could not include them in the demo so it was an important thing this time ! The album art was entirely done by myself as we actually could not find any interested graphic designer. The front cover is a representation of the great fire of Troy by Kerstiaen de Keuninck. It is some sort of representation of Europe today: it has been trapped by the Trojan Horse, now it’s going to bleed and burn. But it is its own responsibility, and I think that’s the worst thing of it all.
‘L’Aube Du Declin’ was released through Mortis Humanae Productions, yes? How did your relationship come about with that label? Is there only the CD version or will a tape format be available as well?
No, it’s actually a collaboration between Ancestrale and Mortis Humanae. We already knew Mortis Humanae because they released our first demo and things went very well. But this time, we wanted to find a bigger label in order to give the album a wider distribution, so we began looking after a new label: Ancestrale were interested in releasing the album but their financial situation was a bit critical, so they proposed us the idea of a collaboration with another label…you know what happened afterwards !
What are some of the things that influence Neptrecus as a band to write and record, particularly on this album? Why?
Well I think it’s hard to say as I am the sole songwriter in the band…but personally, I’m just inspired by the music I listen to, the books I read and my living environment…I won’t speak for the other members of the band !
What does the immediate future hold for Neptrecus? What about 5 years from now?
For the moment we’re trying to perform a lot of concerts but it’s not that easy…we’ve gotten in touch with a lot of gigs organizers but actually most of them don’t even answer us. However, if you organize concerts and are reading this, you can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, we take into consideration every proposal. Besides that, we have 30 minutes of music ready for the next album and all the lyrics are already written…the concept will be quite different but you can expect a great thing ! More details
will be revealed in the coming months…what about Neptrecus in five years ? Honestly, I don’t know, we don’t know…but I assure that we will still be around, no matter what happens !
Where is the best place for fans to hear and purchase your music?
You can purchase our music through Ancestrale’s and Mortis Humanae’s own websites or you can directly get in touch with us ! We also may have a few distribution through other entities but it’s not confirmed yet.
The last words are yours!
Thank you for your interest in Neptrecus and in the French black metal scene. Expect to see us around soon ! Never forget your roots !