This internet interview with guitarist Thomas "Tom" Gilcher of Darkseed was done Vincent Eldefors in January 2005.

Darkseed have been one of the leading bands on the German gothic metal bands for many years now, having formed already in 1991. Their sixth album "Ultimate Darkness" will certainly help maintain and further solidify the band's position.

Hello, how are you doing? What is your name?
This is Tom of Darkseed. Im fine

Your new album "Ultimate Darkness" has just been released, what have the reactions to it been like so far from fans and the media respectively?
Majotity of the reviews we had was positive so far.... Of course you cant make everybody happy with your album but we feel very good with the new cd. The fans cant wait to get "UD"...

In what ways do you think the latest release differs from your previous ones? Did you have a certain sound in mind before writing the songs?
On this release, the average of the songs is more upbeat, heavier, more aggressive, more Sologuitar-stuff. Our certain goal with the songs was to be Darkseed in its best form.

"Ultimate Darkness" is a rather dark album as further realized in a line from the lyrics - "a useless thing called life", is there a lyrical concept behind it?
Not a concept, but Stefan is always picking serious topics for his lyrics to write about.

There is a very large gothic community in the German speaking countries today, have you seen the band's popularity grow in unison with the community? Do you see yourselves as part of it?
Of course were part of it, cause weve been one of the first bands in this genre here and still were one of the biggest of this scene. If the scene is growing, than so are we....

I have heard people compare your music with Rammstein, do you think that the harsh industrial influences might avert the ears of fans of gothic music who primarily appreciate more atmospheric and emotional songs?
No, I dont think so.... Darkseed is a well known name in gothic music, so I think people know what to expect from a band like Darkseed. I personally dont give a shit about to which other bands people compare us....

Does the music of Darkseed reflect your own personal taste in music? If so, how? What do you listen to yourself at the moment?
Yes, especially our latest release.... I like faster and heavy stuff like Soilwork, In Flames and I like cool drumgrooves with doublebass.... Im also into Guitar-Instrumental-Music a lot, so I like to play leadguitar a lot... And all of it is on our new CD..... At the moment Im listening to the new Dream Theater Live album, Diablo and to Rage

If you meet someone who has not heard anything at all of your music, how would you describe it? Which album would you recommend him / her to start with and why? Would it make a difference whether it's a boy or girl?
Id describe our music with the words: heavy, groovy, riffy, melodic, dark and serious... Id let the people listen to Diving Into Darkness cause for me that album has kind of a similar atmosphere to our new one.

Many seem to agree with me that the five opening songs of the album are the strongest ones and that the second half of it sounds a little too similar. Was the placing of the tracks intentional in that way? Did you or the label choose the order?
I dont think that they sound similar to each other... The order of the songs as they are on the CD just sounded right to us...

Who did the cover art and what is it meant to represent?
We wanted the artwork to represent the albums atmosphere (logo, colours). Alex our webmaster did it.

You began your career by signing to Invasion Records, what happened to that label and the people behind it?
Sorry, cant tell you anything about that... Stefan was doing that at a time were I wasnt part of the band yet.

Then came a long period when you worked together with Serenades and Nuclear Blast, what is the difference between being on Massacre (your current label) and being on Nuclear Blast in your opinion?
Massacre is a smaller label, so they take much more care of us because of not having all the big megaselling bands signed

You did a lot of touring in the mid 90s together with bands such as Amorphis, Lacrimosa, Therion and Dimmu Borgir but during the last few years you have been less active as a live act. Will we be seeing you on tour in support of "Ultimate Darkness" or on any festivals this summer?
Well play as much as it is possible for us... The first gigs are planned for March 05.... Headlinershows... Maybe well get a tour-offer that we can realize... Wed also like to play more outside-germany-gigs to get to our fans who arent living in Germany.

What is the writing process like within the band? Is it difficult getting everyone together for rehearsals?
Most of the time Stefan comes up with an idea for a song like Loops or stuff like that and then everyone else is doing his part on the songs... Like me doing all the lead and Solo guitar stuff for instance. Sometimes its really difficult to get all the members together for rehearsals cause were all very busy, you know

A lot of members have come and gone throughout the years, are you still in touch with any of the old members?
Yes Im in touch with our former singer Christoph.... From time to time we hear something from our old drummer Stefan and last week Rico our former bass player came to visit us when we rehearsed... That was fun....

There has been some confusion regarding the vocalist position and you announced a new vocalist named Christoph Puhr-Westerheide in 2003 but then Stefan Hertrich was behind the microphone once more, what happened?
I know..... It must have been a little confusing to you guys... Christoph was for a time in Darkseed where we didnt record a album so he was just live on stage with us but never on any of our records... So Stefan left after finishing Astral Adventures and returned before starting Ultimate Darkness

Darkseed has been alive for almost 15 years now, is it still as much fun as it was back in 1991? Do you look at the band and the music in a different way today?
Im in the band since 1998 and its still a lot of fun everytime we come together even with this lineup cause Darkseed has never had such skilled musicians before. Were friends... Everyone of us loves music and thats why Stefan Tommy and I still do it and still enjoy it....

Any final words for the fans?
Thank you for all the support! You are the greatest! Stay Dark!

Thanks a lot for the interview and good luck with the band and everything else in the future!
Thank you very much. I have to thank you for the interview... It was a pleasure for me... Bye

Links of interest:

Massacre Records