I can’t shake the constant feeling that this and the past year mark the new golden age of post rock inspired screamo bands. The additional elements Swedish band VIA FONDO adds to this art current are the ones that makes descriptions and reviews somewhat more challenging. Join us in the first hearing of their new 12” record “Efter, Utan Under”, full of impressive structures, chaotic beauty, celestial passages and heart-grabbing vocals, and read my interview with VIA FONDO below.
Video trailer by Chariot Of Black Moth. Interview answered by VIA FONDO‘s vocalist and guitarist Karl Nilsson.
Hey guys! Thanks so much for letting IDIOTEQ premiere this amazing record. Being on the verge of its official premiere, how does it feel to have it out? What does it mean to you?
Aww, thank you! It feels so good to finally get it out. Everything we have ever released has been recorded and produced by ourselves. Sometimes its the easiest way, but this time it has been a struggle.
It feels relieving to finally get it off our hands. Writing, and producing an album is hard! It’s a bit nervous to be honest, to have it out. But most of all it feels good. We are happy about how it turned out as an album.
How are you releasing it? Tell us a bit about the great labels you’ve decided to collaborate with.
We have always been focusing on writing songs that matter to us, and if none of these people, meaning Paul, Dave and Kimiyuki showed interest in releasing our tunes we would probably still just record random songs and upload them to the internet.
In the beginning of VIA FONDO, it was very much secondary for us to reach out to an audience, since we never really thought there was one. We are very thankful for this new dimension of making music that we have been given by the people that support us. It means a lot.
What was the motivation behind releasing “Efter, Utan Under”?
The motivation is always to try to cope with life by making songs that processes what is going on around and inside our heads.
That being said, our intentions with Efter, Utan Under was to try and incorporate our view on society and take clearer political stand than earlier.
I guess that came along with the realization that someone out there is actually listening to/reading the lyrics, but also discussions within the band about what we want to protest against/what we support, and the importance of trying to communicate that. We also very much had a vision of making an album where songs would not stand out and matter as much as the album as a whole, trying to create a dynamic record that would be best enjoyed by listening to it as a whole, from the first track to the last.
Was it a challenge to juxtapose these varied styles of heavy yet atmospheric music whilst maintaining the record’s coherence?
It is always hard to balance not being predictable, and still remain the necessary consistency to make songs that make sense. This is something we always consider while writing songs.
VIA FONDO has always tried to stay somewhere on that line, we want to surprise, but not for the sake of it. A great song or album should challenge the listener, but still be somewhat seducing.
Can you tell us about your concept behind your artwork?
Oh, that. It is hand drawn on a 1,5 x 1,5 m canvas with a 0.5 mm black ink pen. It took too long to make. The drawing is an portrait of society as it is today, where some people become losers and others become winners, and the fact that this society of ours very much needs losers and winners in order to maintain balance. The hole in the ground, under the tree is where you come in to this world, and realize that it’s pretty much impossible to be successful without sacrificing fellow citizens. The image was drawn during five months and therefore there are many diverse aspects you can read into it, and discover for yourself.
Have you performed many gigs so far? What are your touring plans? Where are you taking these addictive tunes in the coming months?
We have been playing as often as we found it possible. It’s impossible not to mention Stockholm straight edge here, they have hooked us up several times and are always supportive. We got to play with LOMA PRIETA, THE WORLD IS A BEAUTIFUL PLACE.., ADORNO, PIANOS BECOME THE TEETH, and in April we share stage with AMPERE, thanks to Sthlm SXE. It’s safe to say that we are less ambitious booking gigs for ourselves than writing songs. We jumped into a van with SHIROKUMA and played some shows in Germany and Belgium last summer, apart from that we only played in Sweden, here and there, now and then. The plan now is to tour with REASON TO CARE (also released by Through Love) around Germany, at the end of February and mostly in the first half of March. This is pretty much what we are looking forward to right now, keep an eye out for tour dates!
Any plans to go overseas and arrange a Zegema-presented North American tour?
Not any flight tickets booked, but that is definitely something that would be unbelievably cool to do. None of us has ever crossed the Atlantic ocean.
I’ve been driving through the streets of the lovely town of Tierp on Google Street View and have been wondering who of you guys lives there. Tell us a bit about your roots and musical backgrounds.
Haha, it’s funny you say beautiful streets of Tierp, since I think all of us has a hate/love relationship to that place, in various ways. Maybe that is almost universal for peoples relationships to their hometowns?
Simon lives in Tierp today, but Gusta, Karl and Kim lives in Uppsala (50 km south of Tierp). That is also where our rehearsal space is located nowdays. We all went to school in Tierp and one could say that we where all sort of outsiders… Tierp is a small town where boys are expected to be good at sports etc. In smaller towns like Tierp people tend to be more narrowminded and it’s harder to live outside the norm. We where probably trying to fit in like everybody else, but it’s pretty safe to say that we failed. We pretty much tought ourselves to play our instruments. Karl and Gusta played in a couple of bands toghether more metal/post hardcore orientated at first. Later on Simon started a very strange band where he played impossible riffs roughly put together into something that could be called some sort of flippy hardcore. Music, skateboard and a few very nice people made those years in Tierp barable. Even really fun and beautiful at times.
Do you garner some inspiration from Swedish cities, areas, and landscapes that surround you?
Certainly on a subconscious level. But mainly our inspiration comes from social aspects of life, relations with people and society in genral, yet surely we would have a different sound if we lived somewhere else. The music is a reflection of our surroundings.
How did you form VIA FONDO?
Year was 2010. Conditions where perfect for some serious screamo action. Everyone was unemployed, most of us living on our parents couches. No money, nothing to do except to make music about how everything felt hard.
Frankly, we did not have anything to do, other than to form VIA FONDO. It just had to happen, and it did.
Do you have a mission?
This question was epicly hard to answer, for some reason. We don’t carry an outspoken agenda.
But of course, we want to reach out through our music and lyrics, and when someone contacts us and tells us that a song has been important for her/him/them then a feeling of completing a mission emerge.
We try to be nice people, and we try to write genuine, powerful and honest music. Maybe one could say that our mission is to try to keep doing that for as long as it’s possible.
What is your vision for the future of this band?
Write more songs, do some splits, play a lot live. That’s pretty much it.
Thanks so much for your time! Thanks again for letting me be a part of this great project! Congratulations!
Thank you, Karol!!!