Just a few hours before their show in Eightball Club in Thessaloniki we have the honor and pleasure to speak with Universe217. The experimental doomsters with the marvelous sound are featured below in this very interesting interview with our editor Lilliana Tseka …
So I welcome you to Metal Invader! You are active for about 12-13 years now, how much things have changed for you guys since back then? Let’s say how you work and handle some situations for example.
Hello, Liliana and thank you for your interest in our music and this interview. 12 years ago we were different people, the country is not the same as before, we learn, and we are evolving, changing, all this seems reasonable to me.
Four full length albums, four split / EPs and a live album in your assets! Let’s assume tomorrow you decide to end the Universe journey, would you be proud of your legacy?
Sure, we feel we have a lot to say. I am proud that we took risks in all of our records, we did our research, wetried. I do not listen to all of our releases with the same pleasure, I am not the same person as 7 years ago. Now if all of this musical tangle is a legacy … really wish that it is…
Genre labels musically speaking, how important are they? Several bands big or small, dismiss the metal label out of fear of not being acceptable from a larger crowd, even though their followers derive from this particular genre. How would you characterize your sound? Are metalheads the most loyal fans?
We definitely play metal, I think it’s obvious. Our audience is mostly metal. The people with the hard sound. To classify our music in a way that does not disturb the unlikelyor likely listeners, now I don’t know, are these things worth to concern oneself?
In general, you avoid media and social media. How do you succeed that despite your success, I mean it’s easy to get carried away in all this, and not necessarily in a bad way, besides it is a promotional tool, is it not?
Our tools to promote our work are our music. I do not object to the fact that media is a “tool” for the bands, but I strongly feel that some things have to remain private. Now,I can’t say when it is right to put a stop or what someone believes it’s the right thing to do or a must do, I believe it is clear where we as a band put a stop to it.
In your album ‘Change’ you have a richer and more complete sound, with more textures, the music itself could easily stand by itself, without even having Tania’s excellent vocals. Is it a logical development that, over the years, experience, hard work and endless rehearsals have done?
I have never thought about it that way, you know, our music without vocals. We are a whole, we are together in this. Atmosphere and acoustic guitars are sometimes supplant from the distortion(ease ep), other times the orchestrations are made with the most unsualmusical instruments. I am glad you believe that there is an evolution, and thank you very much for the time you’vetaken to listen to our work.
How did you decide to release an anthology and not to give us yet a full length album? Did you think it was the right time to take a step back and create more comfortably a new album without pressure?
As you previously stated at the beginning of this interview, we have 9 releases already. Someone who begins listening to us now, and wants to take with him what he heard in the live show, may find a meaning in this anthology. We also felt the need to have material from all these 10 years, in one release, thus closing a band period. We’re actually working on a new record, but no one pushed us to release that. I would say that we now have the luxury of circulating what we want, and we have defeated the need to do it, not so much out of someone pressuring us.
Since 2005, you have developed a steadily rising course characterized by both your constant recordings and frequent live performances throughout Greece and abroad. How stressful is it to hold the bar high?
Thank you for your kind words. From respect to yourself, I think, you ought not to rest. Every Live, every rehearsal, we’re looking for something new, something, better, to the composition, to the sound, to how we share it all. I do not really recall telling in anytime, ok we came to a conclusion, what else to do? There is always something else…
It’s no secret that the Greek scene has reached a great level and rightfully that is. We are seeing more and more bands popping up in the top ten international and domestic magazines and zines. Do you think that there is such a great amount of bands, in the end?
Surely the great bands are not just the ones that are featured in lists. In filthy basemens, I see bands raging to say something of their own, and I feel that something really important is going on here. The Greek scene is active, it’s 100 different things together, it’s what its creators want it to be, you have to look for it to find it.I believe there is substance in all this.
Universe217 shape alternations of emotions, moods but always in focus there is this dark introversion. The lyrics are experiential? What exactly inspires you?
Tania uses simple words to describe great emotions. The band uses simple forms, a few notes, and with these simple forms tries to talk about big things. Our music is definitely related to reality. What we do every day, the city we live in, the things that are difficult for us, strange, all that… A bit like psychoanalysis, just like looking at the mirror and trying to understand what you see.
You collaborate with German Ván Records. How did this happen and whether you are satisfied with the approach so far?
A few years before our Ván approached us, and our collaboration is excellent. Sven and Karolina are also exceptional people, which is also very important to us.
On December 16, you perform together with Mother Of Millions and A Void Eternal at EightBall. What should we expect from your performance?
Mother Of Millions have a new extraordinary album and they will present it, Void, they are preparing their own, which from what I’ve listened so far, it’s quite interesting, and as far as concerning to our appearance, we will include new unreleased tracks in the Playlist. We will get together with our friends, and we will find ourselves once again in the hospitable Salonica.
Thank you for this interview and I’ll see you at Eightball! The epilogue is yours!
Thank you for your time and interest.