Praise The Lord (Vicar) – A Interview With Kimi Karki Of Lord Vicar …   Leave a comment

John Wisniewski is a freelance writer who writes about film, music and occult-related subjects. He resides in New York City and used to write for Gradations of Morbidity Zine and now has added Doommantia to his resume of fine works. His first post for us is an interview with Kimi from Lord Vicar. Welcome John to the ever-growing team of writers and thanks for getting this interview together, I am sure the readers will agree, this is a great interview.

1) Please tell us about the forthcoming CD from Lord Vicar?

We will hit the studio for our second album, Signs of Osiris, in August. There will be seven songs, six of which already have names and order: ‘Sign of Osiris Slain’, TBA, ‘Child Witness’, ‘Between the Blue Temple and the North Tower’, ‘Sinking City’, ‘Endless November’ and ‘Sign of Osiris Risen’.

‘Child Witness’ is written by Gareth, our drummer, and the nameless song by Jussi, our bass player. Chritus is working on the lyrics for ‘Endless November’… The rest is mine. The general idea was to observe the variations of violence in our culture. The idea has been to think about actual, controlled, mythical, physical and spiritual forms of violence, which paradoxically offer an important basis to our society. The basic concept comes from Egyptian fertility mythos, but there is stuff about wars, lost architecture, children, women and solitude, to mention some.

Before this album is out there are some split releases for people to enjoy, with Griftegård, Funeral Circle and Revelation. And the first album Fear No Pain is still available from The Church Within Records.

2) Could you name some of your influences in literature and music?

Weird Tales authors such as H. P. Lovecraft, Clark Aston Smith and Robert E. Howard have always been important because of their mixture of beauty and cruelty, of poetic and pulp elements. Some old occult books because of the detailed aesthetical order they provide. I like the idea that something can be both ‘high’ and ‘low’ culture, depending on the angle – please note that I don’t believe such divisions are fruitful, they suffocate ideas like any cultural fences, so I try to mix all kinds of elements that resonate within me in my work as well. I think there is interesting stuff happening everywhere, including some forgotten bar in the desert with house band playing Country & Western, or some dude writing rap in Romania. And when I say interesting I don’t mean that I need to like all that stuff… But I think the richness of the cultures is inspiring in itself. I know there are many metalheads who don’t think like this, but that’s their problem. Saying that, I do like many songs which are purely about beer and sex. But I am not sure if I’m able to write a song like ‘No Stayer’… should give it a try, haha!

Musically the old school bands such as Pentagram, Saint Vitus, Withfinder General, The Obsessed and Trouble are obvious influences, with the solid foundation offered by Black Sabbath. But there is a larger picture of influences which is nearly endless, from movies, dreams, books, a large variety of music, from folk to classical, from progressive to electronic. Any songwriter works as a filter, observing the world and coming up with something they feel is meaningful somehow.

3) Are the members of the band, studiers of the occult?

I guess Gareth is into studying some forms of the occult, the history of Freemasonry, etc. I have collected occult books for about 15 years. My interest is purely scholarly, even if I find some of the spiritual and ceremonial qualities of the rituals possibly helpful, especially when it comes to the idea of silence and focus. I like the idea of studying something which is ‘useless’ for the modern technical society and the dominant discourses, but is at the same time somehow present there without people realising. I also fancy, as mentioned, the performative aspects, the aesthetics of the so called Western Tradition. Most of that goes back to the Victorian era studies of Quabalah and the Masonic heritage. In general, I love old books… the way they smell and have stories as items, as artefacts. I guess that’s one of the main reasons why I became a cultural historian, even if my own research is on modern popular culture.

4) What do you think of the current doom metal scene-any favorites?

I am glad that there are so many new bands trying to find their voice through playing doom metal. Saying that, there are not many which to my ears have a distinct identity and songs that REALLY capture me. Besides the old bands being reformed and touring again (thinking about Vitus, Pentagram, Revelation, Blood Farmers, etc.), I must say that my favourites of the newer bands are The Gates of Slumber, 40 Watt Sun, Mirror of Deception, Orodruin, Spiritus Mortis and Garden of Worm. While Heaven Wept is going to so many directions that it’s something else, but I like that strange synthesis of musical elements Tom has been able to pull together.

5) Where does the name “Lord Vicar” derive from?

I first thought the name as a joke solo album name, Sir Lord Vicar, based on Sir Lord Baltimore and my pseudonym in Reverend Bizarre. Then I realized what a powerful name it was, in the vein of Saint Vitus and Count Raven. Then I came up with the idea of a song ‘Down the Nails’ which is about Saint Peter being crucified upside down in Rome, contemplating how he had let down his ideas in order to carry on earlier. All this was meant as a play with the idea of ‘Vicar’, or ‘the first pope’, someone who follows a path that was prepared by something that had happened in the past. It is also a nice combination of Lord Chritus and Peter Vicar. With all this Christian imagery in place, I guess I’d better emphasize that none in the band are practicing that religion. I, again, find it interesting for scholarly reasons, certainly. If you look at the clerical rituals they are basically an institutionalised form of ceremonial magic.

6) When is the new album coming due out?

In the Autumn. If we record in August as the plan is, I guess the album could be our in September or October. But you never know, even if The Church Within has been reliable with us in the past.

7) What bands did you play with before Lord Vicar?

Kalastaja, Reverend Bizarre, Orne (originally called Mesmer), Kasarmin Valo & Annankatu Five. Some of these are quite esoteric.

8) Could you give us a short history of how the doom metal scene began?

Listen to the first track of the first Black Sabbath album.

9)What lies in the future for yourself? any solo projects due?

Besides the mentioned bands, I also play in E-Musikgruppe Lux Ohr, which plays a form of experimental and minimalistic electronic music. I have also written an album’s worth of folk music, singer/songwriter stuff, which I plan to record under the moniker Frater Moles at some point. Check also The Path is Clear, Gareth’s band, and Weekend Beast, Chritus’ band.
Interview By John Wisniewski

Take a listen:

Lord Vicar @ Myspace

Orne @ Myspace


Posted May 20, 2011 by doommantia in Lord Vicar, Orne, Reverend Bizarre

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