Parzival has intrigued me as an artistic collective since the first time I came into contact with their music. The booming, strong sound, the deep voices, the forceful, totalitarian notion to their expression. Coming across their latest release, I grabbed the chance to ask them a few questions.
Though the Danish group is very busy, they found time to respond to my questions. The group is currently working on the following release and has recently unveiled their record ‘Urheimat Neugeburt’. A work that engages the listener in a reinterpretation of their classic ‘Urheimat’ album.
Read about the group and their recent efforts here.
The Order of Parzival
Hello! How are you doing?
++ “We are doing fine by your prayer”
Parzival is unlike pretty much any music group I can think of. I am curious how your sound shaped itself and what inspired you to choose this very distinct direction that could perhaps be most closely described as a mixture of Laibach, Wagner and marching music?
++ “Laibach is a good band, no doubt – but if you listen to our music carefully, it is very different from them – especially the harmonies and the overall ideas. You can also compare Deep Purple to Uriah Heep – they don’t sound like each other, but basically they have the same roots. And I think that’s the same for Parzival and Laibach. We have a lot of the same musical roots, but we don’t think Laibach have ever made something that sounds like our album “Casta”. Our true inspirations are stuff like Swans and Diamanda Galas, but mostly classical music like Wagner, Stravinsky and Prokofiev. But also Vedic music. And sometimes you get some feelings you just suck in. All the best fluids are always in the air”.
What can you tell about the record ‘Urheimat’. What is its meaning and story behind its creation?
++ “We were trying to recall feelings of old school EBM mixed with our bombastic minimal music. The concept of the album was the lyrical idea about a pre-fatherland, which all of us are looking for. Primitive eternal questions… why are we here? Why are we here? And we do believe our presence in this world is not vain. Do you think your presence in this world for you is in vain?”
Why did you return to this record and brought it back as ‘Urheimat Neugeburt’? What did you do to reinvigorate the music and did you aim for a new message in 2018?
++ “We are still very satisfied with the original version, but we wanted to explore a new sound and it was a bit more easy to do it with new versions material already made. The original album is old school EBM, so of course it was not that easy to convert in this new “gnostic rock” sound. Basically, we wanted to introduce electric guitars and acoustic drums in our music again. You know, we didn’t use electric guitars and acoustic drums since “Blut Und Jordan” from 2002. When we started to work with the guitars we preferred to reconstruct some old songs for the new sound, but it was much complicated than we thought. But we really like the result. We need to add that there is also a totally new song there “Lord Of The Sea”, and a new version of a song from the “Casta” album.”
What has changed internally, with Parzival itself, in the time between the two releases?
++ “Spiritually we are always the same. But of course, we have experienced with our sound. It’s our challenge. The concept of the band will die with us, but music will remain”
I imagine that your aesthetics, sound and work is often misinterpreted. Even the name of this album might be cause for some to immediately ring alarm bells. In a world of ‘triggers’ and polarization, where does Parzival fit in?
++ “We do like totalitarian aesthetics, but we don’t have any political views from the art to the world. Because art exists separately from the domestic things, in our opinion. You can also misinterpret a Herculus statue, because it also looks aggressive – and you can describe the statue from any point of view. But no, Parzival is not a political band, we are an art and aesthetic band that suits our spiritual feelings”.
What future plans do you have right now with Parzival?
++ “For the coming time, we will concentrate on promoting “Urheimat Neugeburt” and play some gigs in connection with this. As mentioned earlier, we are already working on a new album, which we hopefully will record later this year. We never have breaks – as we have our own studio we can work really at all times on new music as well as rehearsing for live gigs. We have been going on for 20 years as Parzival (and 25 years as Stiff Miners/Parzival), so it’s a long journey, but it’s for sure not finished yet. And especially, the first news for you is that we already wrote half of the next album, which will sound even different from the last albums. So start spreading the news 😊