Not long after selecting Dawn of Ashes' epic industrial metal album Anathema for our Best Horror Albums of 2013, I was surprised to hear that founder and creative force Kristof Bathory has chosen to retire the group this year after a planned farewell tour. Still, there's a silver lining, because his plans for the future sound pretty damn awesome.
Kristof summed up his vision of the future with a chilling quote from H.P. Lovecraft: "The process of delving into the black abyss is to me the keenest form of fascination." I got to chat with Kristof recently about his latest ventures into that abyss, and the new ideas he's brought back.
FEARNET: For me, Anathema was one of the best dark-themed music releases of 2013. What kind of reception did the album get from fans?
KRISTOF: I think overall the feedback was pretty decent. The fusion between metal and industrial had a very unique effect, and really caught the attention of new fans and older fans. This album I feel hit the spot when pleasing myself and the fans, which overall is what I was going for.
What circumstances led you to call it quits for DOA?
This was a very hard decision to make, since DOA has been my pride and joy since 2001. There have been various reasons behind this decision: from ex-members trying to bring us to court over who legally owns the name (which under writing is legally mine), and the fact that we've changed or progressed our sound too many times – certain labels were having a rough time placing us in the right direction. Too many issues, overall... it's just time to put this baby to rest.
Have your fans been supportive of your decision?
Most fans seem to support any decision that I make, and are excited to see what I do in the future. On the other hand, we do get a lot of negative feedback... but how I look at it is if you're not going to back up a band's decision, then you're not much of a real fan in the first place.
Good point. Is there any DOA material that remains unreleased or unfinished as of today, including remixes?
I have a lot stored in my personal lock-box... but only time can tell where that ends up.
You're working on new material with Vanna Toxique, under her project Eunoia... what's the nature of that project?
Eunoia is a mix between dark ambient, electronica, trip-hop, and other experimental elements of world sounds and mood-breaking sounds. Vanna's also involved in my solo ambient project as well. [Listen to new music from Eunoia here.]
You've made yourself available for remixes and other production roles, and you've remixed tracks by high-profile artists in the past. Has anyone approached you recently with new remix possibilities?
I'm constantly hit up for commission remix work for artists in various genres; it seems to be more constant lately. If anyone has interest in working with me, you can contact me on my official Facebook page and Bathory Music Productions.
You've previously mentioned working on some film scoring projects over the past year... has that come to pass yet?
I've been so busy with DOA, and preparing to end DOA, that I really haven't found the time to focus on film scores. But I should be releasing an upcoming ambient album in the near future, along with other new things.
DOA's videos have been very memorable for horror fans, so I was wondering if your future plans include any projects in visual media?
We will have to wait and see...
When can we expect the DOA farewell tour to begin?
Tour dates should be announced at the end of February, but keep checking DOA's Facebook page for updates.