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Interview with Karolina, Skeptical Minds | FESTIVALPHOTO

Interview with Karolina, Skeptical Minds


Festivalphoto: OK for anyone who hasnt listened to Skeptical minds before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?

Karolina: Skeptical Minds was formed in 2002 in Belgium.
Our music is a mix between electro-industrial music, metal guitar riffs and melodic female vocals.
In the beginning, Skeptical Minds sounded more ambient and darker. Now, it’s faster and more aggressive. Since Skepticalized album we added new keys. Every song is related to minimum two of those words: Sad, aggressive, depressive. We turn around those things. We have a story and we tell the story with our tools: the musical and the emotional elements we combine in different ways.

Festivalphoto: Your new EP has just been released. Can you tell us a bit about it?

Karolina: Yes, as we prepare a new album for 2014 and as those songs won’t be on the album, we wanted to relase them for different reasons. First because we like them and we also like to play them live. We wanted to have them recorded too. Secondly, we wanted to make some tests about production. Until now, we did absolutely everything by ourselves. We reached our limits and if we want to sound with a more professional production, we have to work with professionals. This EP was perfect to test that and see what kind of result we can reach. Better to make a test with few songs than with a full album. It was also good occasion to test and learn what to adapt or correct for the next album. We are very satisfied of the result and the EP shows the way we choosed now and the kind of production you can expect in the future.

Festivalphoto: Where can fans buy a copy ?

Karolina: We made few copies of it. We released 300 exemplars as a collector (Vinyl + Audio CD). We only sell it during our gigs. Some people ask for the music, we’ll have it available soon for downloading. All info will be given on our website or FB page. We don’t know if we’ll release other physical copies. The idea was to records those songs, to release a collector object and make some production tests ;) We never expected to sell 5000 exemplars of that. But the music will be available in the future for those who couldn’t buy it before. Music must travel and be available ;)

Festivalphoto: What's the song writing process in the band - is it a collaborative thing or are there one or two main song writers?

Karolina: You got it  we have a main song writer and we also all collaborate. First, the main song writer makes the whole structure and basic riffs, melodies, chords, ideas. Then each member can listen to his parts, personalize them, propose alternatives and that’s how we build the final result. Each band member puts his own personality in the composition and that’s something we want to keep because it’s the best way to stay creative and original for us.

Festivalphoto: What plans do you have for your next album? Any estimate on when it might be released?

Karolina: The next album is a concept album. The CD will be released with a full comic (48 pages) and both will tell the same story in two different ways.
We are collaborating with Alain Poncelet (Comic Designer – since more than one year about the story board, the temporary versions of the drawings. Now, we fixed everything and he’s busy with the final drawings. We received the first pages, four until now and it’s very good work ! Beside that, we have to work on the music. It’s very difficult to make it match to the story. It’s like making a movie track. You have to create ambiances that fit to the story. It’s passionating. Now, we are full busy with the music composition. No gigs until begin april 2014. I think the composition part will last until end of februari. Then, studio, production and release.
We hope to have it before the summer 2014. Now, it will also depend of the budget. We want to do that project since 2008 but the needed budget is big for us. The band is self-produced like many other bands… We always had priorities, but now, we decided to make this dream come true  We will be ready with the music and the drawings around april or may 2014. For the release, it will depend of the founds we’ll collect until then. I tell you honestly… that’s the reality… depending on that, it can be delayed until end of the summer maximum but we planned may 2014 so far.

Festivalphoto: What are your inspirations for writing the lyrics?

Karolina: Daily life and people around us.
In our songs, we like to talk about the dark side of the people, the secret side, the hidden part. We all have secrets or things we’ll never tell to anyone. We like to look behind the masks… People are never what they show you at the first sight… That’s why we are “Skeptical Minds” ;) we know there is something else and we like to explore that… The truth is never where you think it is… Every people has something secret or very bad experiences they keep buried inside them. That’s our first inspiration source…

Festivalphoto: What tour dates do you have planned at the moment?

Karolina: We are busy with the booking. The only date we can announce is the Dames of Darkness Festival (UK) on 10th may 2014. Other dates are on the way. We’ll announce more very soon, when we get the green light. Before the release, we won’t make a real tour. We’ll play in several places and we’ll propose a setlist with songs from all our releases. Also old ones we never played or didn’t play since very long time. After the release, in the second part of 2014, we’ll really tour to promote the album and present a special show focused on it + some old songs too.

Festivalphoto: What bands do you think have influenced your music?

Karolina: We have many influences because every member gives an input to Skeptical Minds’ music.
I can tell you: Rammstein, Rob Zombie, Voivod, Massive Attack, Motorhead, Laibach… Electro sounds from the eighties, but also elements inspired by Massive Attack… It’s very rich.

Festivalphoto: When you buy music, which do you prefer and why - CD, Vinyl or legal mp3 downloads ?

Karolina: I prefer to buy the CD’s but during the gigs. That’s where bands win the most. I like to support the musicians and especially when they are self produced and released. When a label is there, you know where the money goes. If you buy in a shop or legal downloads, most of bands receive nothing or just some cents… The whole money is not for them… most of times, the band has to buy the CD to his own label (that’s the sad and ugly reality) and then, sells it during the gigs to make some Euros… First they have to payback the price they bought the CD’s and if they sell everything they have a small benefit they can use for their future projects… That’s how it works and that’s why I prefer to supports the bands this way.
To give you an idea, a band can buy his own CD for 9€ to his label and is he sells it 12€, you can calculate… if they buy 100 Cd’s and sell them, their benefit is just 300€….. what I tell you now won’t please to some people but it is how it works and that’s why we always refused to work like that…

Festivalphoto: What was the last album you bought?

Karolina: Chaostar album. Wonderful compositions, ambiance and production. They are from Greece and I saw them for the first time at MFVF this year. They deserve to be known.
Thank you for that interview 

Skribent: Anthony May
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