This phone interview with the vocalist Christopher Schmid of the German gothic metal act Lacrimas Profundere was done by Cseke Róbert in August 2004.

The German band Lacrimas Profundere was formed in 1993, being one of the few bands at the time who combined classic doom metal with gothic elements. Two years later they released their debut album and this year it is time to unveil their sixth full-length album "Ave End" through Napalm Records. Cseke Róbert discussed the album and many other things in this lengthy interview. [The Editor]

Hey, how are you doing?
Oh, fine, and you?

Great, just anxious to do this interview, I've heard a lot about you, I have all of your albums so far...
That's good!

Yeah, I have a few questions to ask you, I think, many would be interested in knowing the answers to - if they don't already, of course. I'd like to start off with - the main reason we're doing this interview is because of your latest release "Ave End", so what I'd like to ask you is, what your opinion is on the album so far, your subjective opinion is what I'm interested in right now... how do you like it when compared to other albums and such...
I like it very much, because every musician likes the new album more than the previous ones because otherwise you would have to stop playing if the new album is more shit than the others are - yeah the album is - the way I would describe it... it's a rather sad output, emotional and hard and a lot of influences ... I have to like it.

I've listened to the album, I'm not the one who did the review, but I liked it very much, I can tell you that. Are you fully satisfied with the way things turned out, with the final result?
Yeah, we are satisfied with it. With the promotion we're definitely satisfied, and we're satisfied with our cover artwork, and all the stuff that is on the album, and yeah, we're definitely satisfied with it.

So you think "Ave End" is a better album than the previous ones? I mean, you like it more because it's fresh, but do you think it's a better album?
I don't know, I can't really answer that question because I can't be objective about that, I definitely like it because it's fresh and new, it's maybe a better album because... it's a new one, I don't know, I don't know - I can't really say that this album is better than the other ones, it's a good album, but I don't think we ever made a shit album.

I know you didn't, so, ok, do you have a favourite song on the album, and if you do, why? If there are more than one...
Yeah, my favourite song is, hmm, tough question, but I think I would say "Annabelle"... it's a little bit different from all the other songs and it's about sluts and whores and stuff like that, so I like it very much...

My fav is "Sarah Lou"...
Oh, that's good, thank you, it's amongst my favourites too, but my favourite is "Annabelle" because that song is very very fresh because we completed it in the studio, so it's a fresh song and maybe for us it's a bit special than the other songs.

What's the overall response to your latest creations? How did the media and fans appreciate your efforts?
Very good, we were definitely praised by lots of critics and stuff like that and television stations, have had our first video as well, so it's going better than with our previous album when we didn't have a video and nowadays everyone is so addicted to watching television, it is the best advertising that we can have and so these songs can be huge, it is very very useful and good for us, and we definitely earn a lot of money and sure that's good.

For which song do you have a video, I've heard about a video from you guys, I was going to ask you later on, but now is as good a time as any (laugh)?
"Ave End" is the song, the song we made the video for...

Ok, ok, did you try out any of the songs on stage yet? Did you have the opportunity to do this?
Yeah, we did some songs and they're really really nice on stage. Our previous concert, yeah, it was the best concert for me, the audience was fun, really quite aggressive, not real aggressive, but quite aggressive, and it's nice to watch all this from the stage. I definitely liked it!

I bet you did! Too bad I missed it. Do people respond better to the old songs or do they like the new ones as well?
We have some very very old-school fans which only like the very first album, the growling stuff and they're not too pleased with our new direction, especially with my new style of singing because they didn't like clean vocals. Most of the people who liked the old albums like the new stuff too, I think, because of the emotional power, we are always quite depressing and I think the feel of the music didn't change too much, it is still depressing, we only changed the style we express that depression and so most of the times people like the new album too.

I know a few people... I don't know which was the first album you used clean vocals on, I think "Burning A Wish"...
Yeah, "Burning A Wish".

Yes, ok, so many didn't like that, I liked it very much, but many were against it, did you hear about such things?
Yeah, definitely, yeah, not too much, in email and some magazines who didn't give too good reviews because they said "yeah, you're fucking assholes, you only want money with your shit, and your music doesn't come from the heart, because you changed your fucking vocal style" and, I think, that's really shit, because we only play what we want to play at the moment, I mean you can't expect a musician to play the same style from album to album, and so, I think, some people are quite angry because of that change, but what can you do, we can only play the stuff we want to play, 'cos only that way can we make it ... good.

What I wanted to ask you, how do you write your songs, I mean, do you write them before going into the studio and practice them in the rehearsal room, or do you go in the recording room and make up everything on the spot?
We write all the stuff manually, we write in the rehearsal room cos we can't pay so much money to go in the studio and write there. We only mix the stuff in the studio, we make it a little bit better and stuff like that, but we mainly write the stuff in the rehearsal room and then we go into the studio.

Is this the way you've always worked, and is this the way you're going to work from now on?
Yeah, I think so, I dont know, maybe when we're old fucking millionaires then we can go in the studio for a year and do all that shit in the studio but I really don't think thats in the near future. I would really try it, and yeah, we would do it that way...

Ok... here's a question... how did the people from Napalm Records like the songs, cos I know you're slowly approaching your fifth album now at Napalm and your original contract with them was for five albums... am I right?
Yeah, that's right, yeah, the Napalm guys like it a lot, I don't have response from everybody working there but our manager and the guys responsable for us, they definitely like our work.

So you expect a contract renewal after your next album, right?
Yeah, I think so.

How were things so far, are you satisfied? You said, you liked the promotion...
I said we're satisfied now, but on our previous albums we weren't too satisfied, but now we are because of the video and the advertising, but for our previous albums they didn't work too much or too well for our releases, but now we're definitely pleased.

Ok, back to the music... Did you work with a producer on the new record, cause I know, in the past - even if somebody was helping you out with the production process, one of the band members was always there in the studio, making decisions?
Yeah, the way we do it is finish all the songs in the rehearsal room, so the producer just adds to it, like he says "you can sing more emotional" or whatever, but he doesn't have anything to do with the writing so he only makes it a little bit better, or makes it sound better but he doesn't model the image or anything like that.

That's great! How did things go during the recording process, was it fun or anything, cause I know many bands hate recording, they just like sticking with the stage...
Yeah, that's the same with us, we hate recordings too, but it is boring a bit and it's stressful and boring, but it's a necessity, and we definitely like to play live a lot of songs because it has a direct response from the crowd, it's definitely better, but the studio, you have to do.

Guess it's a necessity, uhhm, Lacrimas Profundere is a band that didn't shy away from making quite radical changes in the music even from one album to the next. What was the cause of this? Was it the constant line-up changes, or do other factors come into consideration when making these leaps from one musical orientation to the other?
Yeah, a lot of changes, and it's always a little difficult, because you have to spend a lot of time with the new members, and some decided to leave the band, but now its definitely better for us and yes (laughs) what was the question? I was talking and I lost the question (laughs)

Uhm ok, what was the reson for those style changes? Was it a natural evolution for the band or...
Yes, definitely, definitely a natural, because you can only play certain music once, you don't want to play the same things over and over and the influences change a little bit and for me, I didn't want to growl too much, because growling isn't much fun because you don't have a lot of notes to say a lot in a musicians style and, for me, I did that quite a lot and I decided to sing in a clean voice because it is more interesting, I think.

And more emotional too..

You've mentioned about influences... What were the influences for the new album, any conscious influences or did you like go with the flow?
No (laughs), "go with the flow", definitely not, but our influences didn't change much from our previous album, I think, what I always listen to in my part time, I'm addicted to The Doors for example, Gathering, stuff like that.

With a new album out many would expect a tour, or at least a series of concerts to promote the new material. I didn't hear about a tour in your case, there's only two upcoming gigs I read about on your site. What's up with that?
I don't know exactly, because our booking agency, they work on the tour for us, and I don't know with wich band we'll go on tour with, or how long the tour will be, or is it going to be here in Germany or outside the country, I don't know much about it so I can't say too much - but we're definitely going on tour, that's for sure.

If I recall correctly, I've read about a DVD as well?
The DVD is a strange thing, because we wanted to do a DVD but then we watched all the stuff we had and we don't have too much good stuff and, I think, you shouldn't do a low quality DVD, because that will just piss your fans off, so now we'll just try to collect a very good material before doing a DVD but, I think, it will be in the next year.

Ok, so we'll just wait a little more. "Fall, I Will Follow" was a very successful release, as it ranked quite high for some time. Do you think "Ave End" can top that success, and don't you feel intimidated that the public is expecting more from you now?
Yes, I think it was quite successful but maybe "Ave End" is going to be - uhhm - definitely more successful, I definitely hope so, and I'm not very scared of people expecting too much of us, no, because we can only do the things we do and if it doesn't sell too well it's not a too big of a trouble for us and, hmm, that's it.

Any other plans for the near future that we should know about? Stuff unrelesead to the public, something we can print before everybody else (laugh)...
(laugh) Not really, sadly, there's the tour in the winter and there's definitely a lot to do with the album "Ave End" and, hmm, yeah, no other future plans now...

Ok, that's about it for my questions, if there's anything you'd like to share with our readers, your fans, feel free to do so...
Yeah, for the fans: thank you for everything, thank you for being here, and thank you for the support, that is definitely something to send to your readers.

Thank you for this interview!
Most welcome!

I wish you luck with the new album, everything, tour, everything...
Ok, bye, have a nice evening.

You too, bye!

Links of interest:

Lacrimas Profundere
Napalm Records