Interview: Bang Gang
Fri, 26 Jun 2015 10:32:26
Bang Gang Videos
Founder Barði Jóhannsson on new album The Wolves Are Whispering, feeling like you're in the forest, and the influence of Metallica.
After 2008's Ghosts From The Past, Bang Gang returns with the stunning fourth full-length, The Wolves Are Whispering. Led by musical visionary and producer Barði Jóhannsson, Iceland's most cinematic musical export conjures up a collection of icy and infectious soundscapes punctuated by shimmering melodies and stark movements. It's the kind of music you could easily hear over a haunting ghost story or some kind of dark documentary. That's what makes it stand out so much. It literally conjures visions. In this exclusive interview, Barði Jóhannsson of Bang Gang talks The Wolves Are Whispering, visions of the forest, Metallica's impact on him, and so much more.
Did you approach The Wolves Are Whispering with one particular vision or vibe in mind?
Actually, no. These songs wrote themselves, and I didn't think about it too much during the recording process. When it came time to pick the tracks and order them, I started to piece it all together. I feel that there is a lot of diversity, but still the tracks link very well in the album.
The music that I do doesn't have one specific sound or style. It always ends up being very different from one song to the next. I am a multi-dimensional artist and always strive to make my music as diverse as possible. I think that on this record and the previous one, I made an effort to stick to one style after writing several songs. However, it was tough to stick to it. I have such a wide variety of music and a vast amount of influences.
What are those influences for you?
When I am listening to a particular type of music, it can sometimes completely influence my album. Listening to a lot of electronic music results yields acoustic songs for some reason and vice versa. I was listening to old Metallica records during the most recent recording sessions and some classical music as well. I cannot say that it was very influential on the album, but it is what I was more or less listening to in my car.
What's the story behind "We Will Never Get Along?"
This song is actually the oldest one on the album. It has been around for a while from past writing sessions. The song itself never really seemed to get placed with any of the other material. It was an outlier in a way. This time around, I re-worked the song. The story explains itself. It is basically a combination of different experiences put together in one song.
Where did "Wait By The Lake" come from?
Actually, most of the time when I write songs, I see images or short films in my head, and the song becomes some kind of story. In the case when the lyrics of the songs are direct, there isn't the space for as many visual elements. For a lot of these tracks, I can visualize the music and the lyrics together, in a story.
Watch the video for "Out of Horizon" from Bang Gang: