interview with Diatryma

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Have any of you played in other bands? Every current member has had or have other bands than Diatryma. Wille has his solo project Ocriah, Erik plays guitar in Noodles for my Poodles and Lunar Veil, William pounds away at Social Elite and shreds guitar in Mumincunt and Alex shreds in Mumincunt as well. Mortem has no other active band but he lends his voice to other projects like In Zinnia.

What are your names? / Who plays what? Our axe shredders go by the names Alex Härkesjö and Wille Persson. Behind the kit you’ll find none other than William Parkstam and the rumble from down under, AKA Bass, is played by Erik Bashore. Vocal duty’s are handled by Mortem.

Have you had other previous members? Two previous members. A vocalist named Martin and a drummer named Theo.

Where are you from? We are from Uppsala, Sweden.

What year did the band form? The band formed in 2015 as a school project for Alex but soon got turned into a serious band.

What's your style of genre? We play a modern interpretation of Death Metal. We try to blend the old school Death Metal sound with the modern styles. With some Thrash Metal thrown in there for good measure.

What inspires you? There are no common inspiration within the band. Everyone is inspired by different things. For example, Mortem tend to gravitate more towards books, the occult and old school Death metal while Alex favour more modern bands and social issues. It is the melting pot of ideas that give Diatryma its identity.

How have you developed since you started with the music? We have grown into a heavier and far darker band than what we started out as. We have gone from a very modern and lighthearted sound and image to something dirtier, bloodier and more old school while still keeping a foot firmly in the modern metal scene.

Are you looking for a booking agency, and what are your thoughts around that? We have no real experience with booking agency’s, but based on what we have heard from friends they sound very beneficial. We are lowkey looking for one but as of right now the focus has been more aimed at the writing process.

Are you looking for a label, and what are your thoughts around that? Labels can be good but also bad. It depends on the deal. But we would consider signing with one if the opportunity should ever arise. 

What made you decide to make this music? It more or less just happened. We started out playing, as stated earlier, a style more inspired by modern acts. But as we matured as a band we felt a yearning for something darker and more evil. We tuned down one step, took a page out of the early German Thrash scene when it came to image, and started writing darker material. When the image and the sound came together it just felt right.

What are your songs about? In the beginning the songs where about social struggles and so on, but that started to change as soon as our vocalist became more comfortable in his role as a lyric writer. The songs we write today are mostly horror related in some way or another. If it isn’t literal horror stories about werewolves and zombies, it is about the horrors of humanity as a species such as war or torture. 

Who does the composing and writes the lyrics? 

The songs generally start out being written by Alex. He then brings the songs he has written to the rehearsal space and then we work together to make the song a full fledge Diatryma track. 

Mortem writes all the lyrics and bases them on whatever feeling he gets from the song when he listens to it. 

Do you compose in a certain inviroment? The Composing enviorment is different from day to day. But it always starts in Alex’s younger brother’s home studio.

Have you done any covers live? We have played Dead Skin Mask by Slayer and Laid To Rest by Lamb of God live.

What are the least and most people to attend one of your gigs? Least? Probably like 5-7 people. Most is maybe around 100 people give or take.

What ages are most of your concert attendants? That depends on where we play. We have done our fair share of youth center gigs and at these places the general age is around 16-18 years. However, lately we have been playing mostly at bars, and there audience tends to be more around 30 years old.

Do you always play the same songs live, or do you vary? We try to mix it up if we can but to us it is really important that the setlist is dynamic. Right now we have a very good selection of songs that work great together and we try not to mess with it too much until we have crafted a better one.

Do you have a regular place you play live often? We have done 2 gigs at Copperfields in Stockholm and that is always a blast. We can’t wait to play there again.

What was your first gig like? Our first gig went really well all things considered. For being the first time we ever shared the stage together it went above what could have reasonably been expected. Of course it was rough around the edges but it felt really good delivering carnage together.

What was your latest gig? It was in Gävle as guests at the Imagine Sweden national finals. 

Where have you played live this year? As we said we played in Gävle. We have also played 2 gigs in Stockholm and 1 gig in Öregrund. Also we are making the final preparations for a show in Maastricht, Netherlands this fall where we will represent Sweden at the international finals of Imagine. It will be our first performance on foreign soil.

When did you start to sell merchandise, and what do you have for sale? We started around 2017 with the release of our EP. We only have a T-Shirt for sale but we promise that we will get more for sale in the future. 

Where can people buy your merchandise? They can buy them off our Bandcamp or just simply send us a message on Facebook.

What do you think about people downloading music instead of buying records now a days? We do not support Piracy at all. If you like something then you should support it and Piracy is not supporting it. We try to make art here and stealing art is well deserving of a blood eagle if you ask us.

How do you think the music industry have changed because of this? If you stop paying for quality then quality will decrease. There is reason why metal music has seen an influx of really terrible bands the last 10-15 years. Though to be fair it is really starting to look better. You just have to look harder for the bands that actually try. 

What do you think of my work? From what we have seen we like your work and look forward to following it. Keep it up man!

How do you think and know that this interview will help you in the music business? An interview can always help a band. If not directly it might in a few years. Whatever the case, this will be our first interview which feels amazing.  We hope that this interview will garner some interest on the band and if not, we have fans that we think will enjoy reading this.

Do you have any role models or idols? Much like inspirations this is something that varies from person to person. Each member has his own role models and idols.

Why do you think that they exist? That also varies but probably because we are fans of their work or what they say/do. Sometimes it can be enough to meet them and realise that they are nice people, and in other instances it can be the journey the person has gone through that is inspiring. Also more often than not their musical abilities play a big role in why they become our idols.

Is it easier to find inspiration from older bands, or bands that are more active today? That depends. It is easier to meet smaller bands and through that you can gain a new form of admiration for them. But you can also have those untouchable legends which you will never meet but whom you have a deep admiration for nonetheless.

What have been your biggest obstacles? Without a doubt it was when we had to find a new drummer. The search didn’t last that long but it where so many uncertainties. We knew that to us then, Theo felt irreplaceable and that we only really had one person in mind that could fill his role. If he declined we wouldn’t know what to do. Luckily he said yes! 

What advice would you give other bands or artists? Don’t give up. It sounds cheesy and cliche but seriously. Early in your career you will have obstacles and you will have people telling you that you suck. But instead of letting that drag you down, own it and always strive to be better. Always look for how to improve your act and keep moving forward no matter what. In the end those people will no longer matter. It’s just a long way there, but it is worth it.

Do you have any new material? We have had songs written for a full length album for some time now. We are currently doing the final preparations to hit the studio. More news on that later this year!

What are your web sites? We have a bandcamp: 

Do you have something to add? Keep supporting the underground scene! There are some truly amazing bands out there that deserve you attention far more than the mainstream bands do. The oldies have had their time, its time for some young blood to take metal by storm! 

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