Fvnerals Enters a Chilling “Ashen Era” of Atmospheric Doom Metal (Early Track Stream + Interview)
Fvnerals welcomes you to embrace winter with their frigid new track “Ashen Era.” The UK-by-way-of-Germany atmospheric doom duo has been solemnly simmering over the past few years, slowly adding tangible metallic morsels to their patient yet punishing aesthetic. ”Ashen Era,” the second single from their upcoming third LP Let the Earth Be Silent, reveals Fvnerals’ new approach; a desecration of structure entirely. The track is a formless entity that oscillates between tension-building haze and bleak doom metal stretches. You can listen to it below and read an interview with the band in which members Tiffany Ström and Syd Scarlet discuss their relocation to Leipzig, Germany, their developments into their new album, and how little goths affect their music.
You moved to Leipzig earlier this year as it was a long-time goal of yours. I’m interested in knowing what attracted you to the city and how the move affected your music?
Scarlet: We first discovered the city when we were invited to play at Doom over Leipzig Festival in 2016 and we really liked the vibe, scenery, and identity of the city. I made friends there, volunteered at the same festival the following years, and also spent time in the summer. It quickly felt homely and it just made sense to follow that feeling I guess.
I wouldn't say it has affected our music in any way yet because the album was written and recorded way before we moved here.
Piggybacking off of my last question, Leipzig is a hot bed for gothic music. How do you think that reputation pairs with Fvnerals’ music?
Scarlet: This is not actually a scene we pay attention to or feel connected with. We mostly gravitate around the punk and hardcore scenes ourselves, for which Leipzig has a good active DIY community and cool venues.
Ström: Even though this is something we have let interfere in the past, the decision to move was not based on our band this time but more about being in a place where we like spending time and living. We do know the city hosts WGT once a year but that's probably the only time we are in contact with the gothic scene.
You’ve said that Let The Earth Be Silent will be less optimistic compared to your earlier albums, which were already pretty bleak. How’d you modify your process to match that intention?
Scarlet: I think it happened quite naturally. The process itself is still similar but the sound has continued to evolve to match our current feelings and our artistic vision. Fvnerals is a band I use to address my struggles with depression and I think that in a way the music we make will always follow my feelings at the time. When writing Let the Earth Be Silent, we evolved towards less song-like structures and allowed ourselves more intricate layering of melodies and instrumentation.
Ström: We also coupled this with a more experimental vocal approach that complements the songs without necessarily having them as the central element.
Fvnerals have gotten heavier with every release, specifically with the two singles from Let The Earth Be Silent. What’s pushed you to explore the heavier aspects more thoroughly?
Ström: Syd and I actually also have a heavier music background. I was in punk bands as a teenager and Syd has been in multiple noisy and hardcore punk bands for years. When we first met he was playing in a sludgy hardcore band at the time and he and our then drummer started Fvnerals as a departure from that, with more tamed-down influences and a less aggressive sound. I think across the years that separation line has blurred a bit and we started incorporating harsher elements in our music.
Seeing as how it’s been six years since your last album, how do you feel you’ve developed as musicians and songwriters since Wounds’ release?
Scarlet: We had started to write the follow-up to Wounds around 2018-19 and had completed multiple songs but we eventually decided to disregard them all and to not release them as we thought they were too similar in sound and style and did not bring anything new. At the time, we had also just relocated from the UK and still had shows and tours planned. I started writing for another project with a very different vibe in mind and in the end it took a while until we decided to write new songs for Fvnerals again. It is very hard to evaluate ourselves on how the songwriting has evolved but I think the songs are less structure-based and less linear, we spent more time on non-guitar instrumentation and production and tried to not limit ourselves to our previous minimalist approach as much.
What’s one aspect of Let The Earth Be Silent that you hope sticks out that may not be obvious upon first listen?
Ström: Due to the sonic details we put in the album, we hope that each listen can reveal new layers, textures, or harmonies when you pay closer attention. In a similar way, the lyrical content, meanings, and themes we incorporated in the album can also add a dimension to the listening experience.
Let the Earth be Silent releases February 3rd, 2023 via Prophecy Productions.