What happens when you put a bunch of bloodthirsty music-loving goblins together? Well, a lot of disembowelment, but also a lot of catchy tunes. Formed in 2006, they’re arguably the first ever goblin metal band. They are NEKROGOBLIKON, and they are all set to unleash their latest offering, Power, on the masses August 27. I had the chance to speak with vocalist Nicholas Von Doom recently about the way this all started, making music under penalty of death, the INSANE “No One Survives” video, and more. See for yourself:
Tell me about the "No One Survives" video. Was it as much fun to make as it is to watch?
Nicholas: Yeah, definitely. It was pretty insane. This fella Brandon Dermer, when he shot it, it was pretty legit in terms of the shoot. There was a full-on crew of 30-40 people working on it for like, three days. We weren’t there for all the days, it was pretty hectic, but when we were, it was just insane to watch.
Who had the connections to John Lajoie and Kayden Kross? How’d that come about?
Nicholas: John’s a friend of Brandon, the director, so it was kind of an accident, but it looks cool.
When I first watched it, I was like, “Holy shit! What is going on here?!?” I showed it to the wife, who promptly ran out of the room screaming.
Nicholas: (laughing) that’s awesome!
Sooo…Goblin Metal, huh? Where did this come from?
Nicholas: It was kind of an accident. My friend Tim (Lyakhovetskiy, guitars and backup vocals) and I were kind of bored on summer break. I had moved home because I dropped out of the first college I tried to get into. So we were just bored, working on tunes in his garage. One day the door just smashes open, and this group of goblins, they grab us, and took us into deep space and tortured us for an inconceivable amount of time. I can’t really put human time onto it, because it’s just endless. The technology to keep us perpetually alive while they slowly tortured us. After that, when we got back we decided to make Goblin Metal.
Right, to satisfy the goblins under penalty of gruesome death. So, is everyone all ready for the new record, Power?
Nicholas: We’re really excited about it. I think we were able to do something different than what we’ve previously done. And had we not created the record we would have been brutally murdered, so there’s that for inspiration, but I think we’re all still pretty proud of it.
I was looking on iTunes, and it really seems like people love you.
Nicholas: Well there are a lot of subliminal messages that we put in there that the goblins have told us to use. Their technology is so far ahead of ours. Really, it’s completely inexplicable. We have to.
What are the tour plans?
Nicholas: We’re definitely working on something, hopefully in the States this year. Sometime around early 2014, with any luck we should be getting out there. I can’t promise anything, but it seems likely.
The music sounds like something that is very visual, it really does. Is that intentional?
Nicholas: It was more of a happy accident. I’ve always been influenced by the electronic music side, and orchestration and composition, and there’s Tim, who was really into metal at the time. Plus we were forced to start working with each other by these goblins and we just combined in this interesting way, and it’s kind of cinematic, the blend.
Who does most of the writing?
It’s a group effort. Tim had a lot of leftover riffs from a band he was in before, like the Goblin Island stuff. The second album Stench was a little more collaborative, and then with Power we all contributed to the writing. I think it’s working well. It’s not a jam-type situation. We all work on things together.
Who’s the most serious and who’s the craziest?
Nicholas: Most of us are completely different. We have six different personalities. It’s tough to say. We all have that sardonic sense of humor, but no one’s too serious, or too crazy.
Anything you’d like to say to your fans out there?
Nicholas: Yeah, definitely. Thanks so much for everything so far. We really wish that it was US you guys liked instead of the goblins torturing us and forcing us to do this. But we’ll take what we can get. And hopefully moving forward people will like the evolution of NEKROGOBLIKON'S music, and I think they will.
Nick, thanks for taking the time to speak with me. Looking forward to the live show.
Nicholas: Yeah, thanks a lot for calling, and definitely don’t be a stranger. I’ll hit you up when we’re coming through Texas.
Power will be available everywhere on August 27. I suggest you pick it up, or their blood will be on your hands, people.