interview with Lamashtu

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Have any of you played in other bands?
Lamashtu plays with No Brain Just Heart, Morlocks, Decorate the sky and session for Strauss ex Machina right now. She used to play with Imagine Iris, session for Warheim and before that Your Naked Shoes.
Pazuzu is the founder of Älvsång Production and the band Unit Ted. Also he is running the band project Kingsword.
Buer is singing with the choir Ars Veritas.
Empusa have sung with Infinite Escalator.
How is it that you started playing music? We have always played music in one way or another. Pazuzu plays music for a living and Lamashtu have been apart of bands since her younger sister asked her to join theirs’.
What are your names? / Who plays what? / How old are you?
Lamashtu is Sandra Mattsson. She is 32 years old, writes the lyrics, plays bassguitarr and creates the music together with Pazuzu. She and Paz is also partners in life (not only in music) and are responsible for making Lamashtu Lamasthu. The idea originally came from Sandra, but the music came from Pazuzu.
Pazuzu is Johan Älvsång. He is 31 years old and writes the music, produces it and masters it. He is also in charge of almost all recordings (although Lamashtu intervenes at many points). Pazuzu also plays all piano, keyboards, guitars and all other instruments (except for some drums that are played by Lama and Paz child Uno). Pazuzu sings many of the vocals.
Empusa is Mimmi Kemppainen Persson and was born in 1989. She sings the higher female choirs.
Gorgon is Yvonne Platon and was originally Lamashtu’s personal tailor. Then Lamashtu and Pazuzu discovered she had a wonderful voice and included her in the incarnation. She sings the lower and more experimental tones.
Buer is Isak Andersson. Isak sings the low male choir.
Have you had other previous members? Lilith aka Frida Mattsson (Sandras sister) was originally part of Lamashtu. She is singing on the song Blod Blod Rött Blod on the album Fallna Själar.
Did you make music even when you were young? Yes.
Where are you from? Lamashtu is from Halmstad and Pazuzu is from Gothenburg (Älvängen)
What year did the band form? The band was formed in 2015 (summer)
What's your style of genre? Doom/progressive/avantgarde metal
What inspires you? Cognitive processes, evil in the world and provocations! When making our first album we were inspired by the movie Seven (Lamashtu’s absolute favorite movie) and the seven deadly sins. We also wanted to write it in Swedish and produce something that was powerful like Rammstein in our own language. Also we were inspired by Opeth, Devin Townsend and the Halmstad band the Shining.
How have you developed since you started with the music? Yes. I think next album (already in the making) will be more true to the genre metal (instead of being more towards avant-garde progressive).
What made you decide to make this music? We wanted a combined music and art project that we could run (Lamashtu and Pazuzu) by our selves (as a solo project) instead of having to rely on other band-members time.
What are your songs about? The songs are about evil in de world and about how temptation can lure you to do bad stuff. Actually the theme surrounds Lamashtu and the story about if she would rule in Sweden today (instead of Mesopotamia, killing unborn babies in their mothers’ stomach) how she would do that. After some time we came to the conclusion that Lamashtu also stands for disease. Today we have a lot of mental illness which is why we thought that if Lamashtu existed today, that is what she would do = Spread mental illness and manipulate people to do things that are bad for them.
Who does the composing and writes the lyrics? Mainly Lamashtu writes all lyrics, but Pazuzu sometimes comes up with amazing themes that Lamasthu can follow. The same goes for the composing of music, which is mainly done by Pazuzu, an idea is formed and then the music flow like wind.
Do you start with the music or the lyrics?
With the lyrics, most often. However both are done simultaniously, intervened with an idea that makes words and winds spring to life.
Do you compose in a certain enviroment? We compose in our house. And we developed strict rules for that. There should be no pressure no nei-saying. The music and lyrics creative process should be effortless and intuitive. Otherwise we have done it wrong. We as artists should rely on our gut feeling and nothing else, which is also why we try to just do what we feel is right instead of thinking to long about it. The main idea for our first album took us about two months to complete. The first month we wrote and made the structure to the six last songs. What took a bit longer time was the first song, but that came around too in the end. What took time later on was to get the choir together and to do the final decision-making on what parts to keep and what not to keep.
What language do you sing in? Evil Swedish
When did you start to sell merchandise, and what do you have for sale? We started just now. We have tshirts, shot glasses and will be having LPs.
Where can people buy your merchandise? On our facebook page
What do you think about people downloading music instead of buying records now a days? I say, go right ahead. Bands don’t earn money that way anymore anyways. And at this point if we can’t spread our music we wont be able to sell it anyways. Maybe these thoughts will change, but right now that is what we feel.
What do you think of my work? Awesome, its really good that you ask all these bands a lot of questions. That’s rare and unique. Keep it up!
Do you have any role models or idols? We love Rammstein, Devin Townsend, Shining but we have a lot of influences.
Is it easier to find inspiration from older bands, or bands that are more active today?
I think it is easy to find inspiration in everything. Everything that makes you think is good (quote from my tatoo artist)! But of course I (Lamashtu) am more impressed with stuff from older bands because you couldn’t cheat back then. Today you can outotune the hell out of everything and also you don’t have to be really good at anything. For me what is really important is the song. The lyrics, the melody and the strength in the combination of that. Some people are able to create magic that way. Others just cant. I hope that I can.
Do you have any new material? Our next album will be called VANSINNET (translates to the madness or the rage) and will be about different psychological states that you can get yourself into. I (Lamashtu) am very interested by the human mind and part of her research concerns how the human mind works (she works as a researcher). Vansinnet is already in the makings...
How can people reach you? By joining our Facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/lamashtudarkness/ or by emailing me sandramattsson (at) gmail.com directly.
What are your plans for the future? We will make the next album and will perform live some time in 2016. Hopefully on a bigger scene.
Do you have something to add? As I stated to some extend Lamashtu is a music and arts project. On the 13th of February we held an exhibition of paintings connected to each of the seven deadly sins (presented in the album).
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