Here is a translation of official news that were published by Skambankt on skambankt.com, MySpace, or Facebook, as well as articles published by Norwegian and Danish media. The orginal texts have been published online. If you have an article you don't understand and want a translation up here, please give me a hint.
2008/09/20 Stavanger Aftenblad: Church sound
|Skambankt's project for 2008 sent drummer Børge Henriksen to temporary church asylum.
Nærlandparken: This doesn't have anything to do with the "Stavanger 2008" project "Kyrkjelyd" (church sound). It was just a cheap headline, but Skambankt's church escapades during the night to Friday were all about church and sound.
In February, Skambankt will release their new record. The band itself took control of the recording process for the successor to "Skambankt" and "Eliksir". This sent the punk rock band with the politically red lyrics into the church.
- Yes, I see the paradox. But we are looking for melancholy and some darkness. And there, churches fit perfectly well, Skambankt's bass player Tollak Friestad says smiling.
No substitutes:Say what you want about churches, but such acoustics is hard to find. Skambankt could have simulated a similar acoustic with some software and technology, but as sound-enthusiast and studio owner Eirik Bekkeheien says:
- There's just no substitute for big rooms.
Because Skambankt attending church is only about sound.
- There are not so many buildings that are so monumental. Churches are built for acoustics, and we are trying to develop our sound. The guiding theme on the new album is darker, both in sound and lyrics, and the church room fits perfectly well, Friestad says.
Eirik Bekkeheien has put out 150 meters of digital cable from his studio in the old sanitarium out to the Stefanus church (the church in Nærlandheimen). The Skambankt members are sitting in three different places and playing the same song.
So Skambankt's church asylum is pure sound cadging. Some tracks on the upcoming record are planned to be heavy and a bit pompous.
- Pompous and churches is a good match, Tollak Friestad says and laughs. - But the sound, especially the bass drum, is very good.
The goal for the night is to record the drums for four tracks.
While guitar player Hans Egil Løe turned off the lights and lighted candles in the recording room in the studio, drummer Henriksen is sweating in the Stefanus church. Terje Vinterstø Røthing is sweating less in his place behind the candles in the church, but he is burning with joy.
- The last takes must have been good. The transitions sounded better. Tollak? Can we listen to it?
Surreal: Bass player - and for the moment technician - Friestad asks the others to come into the studio to listen. Two men from the church and one from the side room enter the control room. The sound of the bass drum is praised again. A microphone might need to be changed, but it seems like the Stefanus church lives up to the expectations.
- It is a bit surreal that we are actually playing together. Me there, you here, and you two over there, Hans Egil Løe says.
- I'm getting a bit afraid, almost.
The hour is getting close to 11 pm, and Tollak Friestad tells about the man who walks around howling in Nærlandsparken at night. But the talking keeps short, because the sweaty drummer is facing a hard night. If there is too much noise, they risk to be forced to stop. They agree that among the three takes, there is at least one they can use. Next song. Run to the church. Count in. Play. Sweat.
- Very good bass drum sound, Friestad says while the others disappear to their respective rooms.
Notice the difference: The excitement about what has been captured under the high vault of the Stefanus church is huge. But will ordinary record buyers hear the difference between bass drum in the studio and bass drum in the church?
- Nja, if you give such a recording to hi-fi people, they will nodd and smile, Rekkeheien says.
- And this means something for the record as a whole. It's apparently small things that have a great influence when they come together. Lateron, we will record timbals and chimes, so yes, people will hear that, Friestad says before turning towards the mixing desk and checking if the team in the Stefanus church is ready for another sweaty turn. Count in. Play. Sweat. Time goes by.