A Q&A with Arctic Dreams
Russian hard rock trio living in Serbia…
What’s the title of your latest release, and what does it mean to you?
Alex_Y: ‘And The Agony has Started’. That’s the title of our seventh track on the album. The lyrics of this track are about the world apocalypse as a punishment to mankind for their sinful existence. This theme is inspired by catastrophe movies like 2012, The Day After Tomorrow etc.
Sydius: Sometimes the title as far as lyrics is a game if not strongly conceptual and following a specific story. So you vary things.
What was the hardest part about putting this release together, and why?
Alex_Y: Well the first one, I think, is coming up with the concept. We went through a lot of options. Something was thrown out, something was left, and in the end we got this release. And the second thing is that we finished it in a hurry. The thing is that we had only one single ‘The City Built on Bones’ ready by February 24th, 2022. All the other tracks were in the works. We had to put all our business aside and focus on finishing the release. On top of that, it was all happening in a rather stressful situation, as we were preparing for the relocation in parallel. We weren’t sure if we could get this release done at all. But in the end, we got everything done and the release was successfully released in November 2022.
Sydius: The hardest thing is to actualise which was the hardest. In momentum some things might be harsh but seem nothing in retrospective.
“We want to give our listener our world”
Who produced the release – what did they bring to it? If you produced it yourselves what do enjoy most about producing your own material?
Alex_Y: I took care of all the production. I am the sound engineer and the owner of the recording studio of our studio Arctic Sonic Wave. So the question of producing wasn’t even an issue. What do you like most about producing your own material? For me, it’s the finished material. You know, when you work a long time and a lot of work on your material, after a while you can’t listen to what you are doing, you think it sounds terrible. But then you pause for a while and then you listen to the whole material and you know that you’re not wrong and you’ve done everything right. That’s what makes me feel satisfied and that all the effort was not in vain.
Sydius: But I think it would be useful to work with a producer and learn some new vision.
What do you want the listener to take away from listening to your music?
Alex_Y: We want to give our listener our world, our meta universe. In which he can immerse himself, disconnected from the outside world. We have already received such feedback, and we are very happy about it.
Sydius: Don’t take our music away from us! It’s just joke.
“First there is an idea. Then it matures in my head”
How does a track normally come together? Can you tell us something about the process?
Alex_Y: Yes, of course. I am the author of all the music of the lyrics. How does this happen? First there is an idea. Then it matures in my head, it can be compared to the maturation of a good wine. When the time comes, I just sit down and write the notes and the lyrics. Usually it’s already finished, we rarely make any changes.
Sydius: Sometimes the process is a mess and I’m surprised it finally works out!
Glam_Dickens: For me personally, the processes of creating a song always differ. This time I can take an instrument, start practicing and catch the whole idea riff by riff. Another time I can just get stuck with one riff. The same with lyrics. You can never know an idea come from where and when.
What band/artists have influenced you the most since you started this project, and why?
Alex_Y: We are asked this question every interview. It’s very difficult to single out certain artists. The thing is that since we’ve been creating our concept for a long time, there have been different influences from different artists at different periods of time, like me. If I think about it, it would be Metallica, Iron Maiden, Dimmu Borgir, Cradle of Filth.
Sydius: Monteverdi. He influenced those who got influenced by those who were influenced by influenced by his influencers. In the way that he invented the form of a pop-song in his madrigals.
Glam_Dickens: I am influenced by KISS all the time, not just from the start of the project. Since we started the project I’ve learnt a lot of new bands for me and forgot not less. So, if we consider KISS… they have everything I need in music and in the show. The have so diverse music and periods, so you never get bored.
“There should be no boundaries”
What countries would you like to tour? Are there any standout venues you’d like to play in?
Alex_Y: We will go to any country, to any city where we are invited and welcome. Our mission is to make sure that our fans are not disappointed in us. And we want to play on all big metal festivals and venues. I think any musician thinks so.
Sydius: Would be cool to play for Antarctic penguins.
Glam_Dickens: In every possible country, I believe there should be no boundaries for it. Since I started as a musician I always dreamed to perform at Madison Square Garden. I don’t know why, but it seemed like an Olympus for the rock’n’roll bands and not only… a lot of my favourite bands performed there.
If you could pick one track for our readers to listen to in order to get a taste of your music, what would you pick, and why?
Alex_Y: Let it be ‘The Arctic Dreams’ – I think it’s the quintessence of us as a musical unit.
Sydius: Maybe ‘Join to Space’. It has some of my favourite blends with dance and acoustic music. And a nice guitar riff.
“Unity in the love for heavy music”
What ambitions do you have for the band/your career?
Alex_Y: You know, we’re not young people anymore. We kind of learned how to make music. I would like to travel around the world and play in different countries and cities, talk to fans of heavy music of different nationalities. It’s great to feel welcome and supported in different languages and in different places, to feel that unity in the love for heavy music.
Sydius: Actions first.
Glam_Dickens: Never stop going and we’ll see what another day will bring.
Finally, as you leave the stage, what are your parting words?
Alex_Y: It’s simple: “Stay true, Be Metal, Never Surrender”
Sydius: You definitely want a Schwarzenegger-meme
Glam_Dickens: Finally!!! Frankly saying, I never thought about it and I bet no one honest, open-to-fans performer prepares such words. They’re gonna go from the heart at that time. Anyway, at the time if I say something like that it could be sound silly or they would not hear me, because we have a total mess after the show, ha-ha!