Metal Mofos’ Isaac Sauers spoke with unblack metal band Demonicuduth founder Taanak about the band’s history and their upcoming album Enemy of Satan to be released on Vision of God Records.
Metal Mofos: How did you choose the name Taanak?
Taanak: A lot of black metal bands use pseudonyms and sometimes have names of demons. We wanted ours to be from the Bible, but still sound black metal. I chose the name Taanak because I just think it sounds great. It’s a city in the Bible near Megiddo. It was a city reserved for the tribe of Levi in ancient Israel.
Taanak: We started in 1998 when I was 17 years old. I’m 35 today. The idea to form a band came because there wasn’t really any Christian metal in Switzerland, and we came up with the idea of forming a band. None of us played any instruments at the time. We learned so we could start the band. We asked each other who wants to play what instrument. I was like, Ok, I want to play bass. The sound of the bass was very natural for me. We didn’t like the articles we read in metal magazines where bands had a very anti-Christian attitude and thought it needed a response.
MM: Were you listening to a lot of black metal music at the time?
Taanak: Not really, to be honest. Most extreme bands I listened to were Christian. That’s how I discovered extreme metal. I listened to things like Sepultura, Pantera, and Rage Against the Machine. The first death and black metal bands I listened to were Mortification and Horde. That’s how I found extreme metal. I eventually became embarrassed of some of the lyrics in my albums like Pantera or something because I claimed to be a Christian and some things bands said were opposite of my views. I eventually threw all those CDs away.
MM: How did Demoniciduth decide to play black metal?
Taanak: We decided to play black metal because the mainstream was so anti-Christian. We wanted to fight against that, and that’s where it was most extreme.
MM: Did you ever get any backlash from black metal groups?
Taanak: Yes, some. On our old website we had a guestbook where people wrote some insulting things, back when websites still had guestbooks. We just ignored them. One other time was a bit more serious. A black metal label from France called Drakkar Productions where we wanted to sell some merchandise received our promo pack, and they sent us back a package in return. Their package contained a beer bottle filled with pee and a piece of excrement. I replied and said thank you for the piece of excrement it really reflects your production. They then replied in an email their next package will be delivered in person. I said Ok, angels of Christ will receive. I don’t think they were serious and that was the end of it. I believe there is a spiritual war and it should not be taken lightly.
MM: Take me through some history of the band. You’ve gone through different members since the beginning.
Taanak: I confounded the band with one of my best friends. Some members just wanted to play in the band but weren’t really Christians. We realized over time that if our real purpose is to preach Jesus and some members didn’t know about him we would lose credibility. We released Dogs of Antichrist in 2003 and our next release Valley of Decision was not until 2012 and the reasons I mentioned are why. We had 9 years of absence. I didn’t find the right members to continue.
We recorded our first album Post Tenebras Lux when we saw an advertisement in the newspaper that a local studio was having a Christmas special where recording time was 50% off. We were teenagers who didn’t have any money so we had to take advantage of this.
Taanak: First it’s because my wife is from Ecuador. I met her here in Switzerland, but the rest of her family lives in Ecuador. We go there once a year to visit. During our visits I met some guys who did Christian metal there after Demoniciduth did Valley of Decision in 2012. The main guy in The band Golgota named Abraham organized a music festival called Dikaion, and he said my band should play it when I came to Ecuador to visit. I said I’m the only member right now. I need a guitar player and drummer. He said I could play with his band mates from Golgota, just send MP3 files of your songs for them to learn, and we could play like 10 songs. This was 2 months before the festival. I said I would prefer the guys learn 6 songs really well than 10 songs maybe not as well. We met a couple weeks before the festival to rehearse. The show went well. The guitar player asked me if I had any new songs and if we could keep working together.
I had a computer program at the time called Reaper where you could record songs through your computer. I said I would send MP3 files of things I recorded. We recorded an all new full length album last year while I was on vacation. I told my wife I wouldn’t spend our whole vacation recording the album so I did all my bass and vocal parts in just 2 days! I stayed recording till midnight and had a headache. We then had the mix done in Switzerland because they have better equipment here. The price is high though so we are doing fundraising.
MM: Can you tell me about the songs in the new album Enemy of Satan?
Taanak: In the past some members weren’t really into black metal or death metal so they wanted to inject the styles they liked into the songs. So we mixed things like metalcore with black metal voices. When I met the guys from Golgota they were totally into black metal. So it’s possible to do things more aggressive and more black metal with them. The new album is definitely more black metal oriented. I also do vocals with more of a technique. Before I would just scream . Now there’s technique to it. I watched this DVD called Zen of Screaming where this girl teaches how to scream for a long time without harming your voice. My screams are even more brutal now I think.
MM: Wow, that’s sounds cool. I’d like to see it sometime. What are some of your favorite songs on Enemy of Satan?
Taanak: I love them all. The title track “Enemy of Satan” is a real favorite. It’s a longer song at 6:00. There’s a bridge within the song that makes me think of Antestor or stuff like that. We haven’t released a full song yet because we wanted people to discover it on the new CD. The lyrics deal with talking to Satan himself and calling him a liar and thief and his kingdom will not endure forever. Another part is saying that as Christians we have faith that even though Satan may be stronger than humans we have victory over his attacks through Christ.
MM: The samples sound great. I’m really looking forward to the new album.
Taanak: Everything is finished for it except the CD booklet. All the mix and mastering is done. Once the design of the booklet is done the album can be sent off to press.
MM: Awesome. I hope to hear it all soon!
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