Answered by: Ryan
-The first question is ordinary. Could you tell us some things about your history?
It all began in 1996 when we started to play some Metallica cover numbers. This period of time was used to find the right members (it started out with just Jesper and Ryan), and in 1998 we changed our name to Compos Mentis (from a name which we probably shouldn't tell anybody). Then in 1999 we recorded our first 3-track-demo 'Vulturous', where Andreas and Ryan played a little piano, which we all agreed sounded quite good, so Bo joined the band. Serious Entertainment responded to our demo and asked if we would like to have a track on a compilation cd called 'Extremity Rising vol. 4', so we had to record a newer track, Brave and Lonely, where we experimented with some female vocal ('never more said the Raven', Poe.). When the compilation cd was released, we found out that the sound sucked, so we went to Jacob Hansen (Illdisposed, Without Grief, Autumn Leaves...) and recorded Quadrology of Sorrow in the beginning of 2000. Until now we have sent it out to a lot of clubs and about 150 labels and magazines all over the world.
-Why have you entitled your MCD "Quadrology of Sorrow"?
The concept of the MCD is about a character who, after having lost his bride, experiences a huge sorrow, and since the demo is in four tracks, it ended up being a quadrology about sorrow.
-The cover as far I can see, it depicts a bird flying, and at the background, a very nice landscape during sunset. I am of the opinion that it's concept (if of course there is a specific concept behind "Quadrology...) has to do with liberty. If the things are opposing to what I just told you, could you tell me some things about it's concept?
You're right, it is partly about liberty. We have placed the character from the lyrics in a hard situation and after this experience he goes insane. His actions etc. are therefore pretty much a result of the opposite of liberty. But after quite a while he returns to his normal state of mind and from this point he is free. Nothing is left to bind him anymore, and he has grown stronger from the experience (what doesn't kill you makes you stronger!).
I don't know if it's only us who in Divine Wrath can hear Jesper singing, 'a bride to be, now nothing but a fantasy' and the start of Beyond Salvation where the text goes, 'Farewell my beautiful bride to be, let the raven guard upon thy soul.' The raven is here ment as the link to the land of the dead but it could also be seen as the love that flies away.
The background of the cover illustrates a landscape, split up in the light from the sun and the darkness from the mountains, which is meant to illustrate the life and the death as well as good and evil.
-The place which is depicted on the cover, is it a real place, or just a place of your imagination?
Does it really look that real? The sky was a picture of a blue sky at daytime, where we simply adjusted the colors. The water was taken from a library of standard pictures in a graphic program, and the mountains were generated in a 3D graphic program. The raven in front was stolen from a homepage about ravens and later we have just twisted it and removed its colors.
-I' d say that your music owes to a large extent a lot to DARK TRANQUILLITY. To become more specific I am refering to the past of this band. It seems that 'The Gallery' is one of your favourite albums.(I don't mean that you are a copy of DT) What do you have to quote?
I'm sure you're right when you say that we sound a lot like DT, but I believe that the thing that makes us sound like them is that we use some Swedish metal passages, which we have conjoined with different black metal kinda things. But actually we have never heard 'The Gallery', the only DT album we've heard is 'The Mind's I' which we found to be a rather good album. It has been quite a while since that album has been in the cd-player, though, due to too many new releases. But perhaps we should try 'The Gallery'?
- Your music is constructed in a way according to which you can enrich it with some folk-elements.
I don't think that we used any folk-elements at all on the demo, or at least not deliberately. But actually we have thought about it ourselves and we are also experimenting a little bit with folk-elements though it is not that serious - yet?.
-What does the name of the band mean? Who invented it?
Compos Mentis means something like being at your common sense. I believe that it was Andreas, the drummer, who came up with the idea, but not because we believe that we are at our common sense - but then again maybe we're trying to (it's okay to fail!). We just thought it sounded quite OK, so we took it even though it doesn't mean anything deep.
-Do you perform any live shows inside or outside Denmark?
We are going to play at two festivals, and 2 clubs have asked us to come and play, but it's all in Denmark. Hopefully we're soon coming to a town near you, haha. Right now we're discussing a contract with Rich from Lost Disciple Records, and he has made it clear that he wants us to go on tours, which we look forward to do.
-How is the current underground scene of Denmark? Would you like to mention some bands you appreciate?
In our opinion the underground scene of Denmark is really great. I guess there aren't that many bands who are well-known outside Denmark as it's a little country. You should you know some of the following bands: Withering Surface, Illdisposed, Konkhra, Saturnus, Aurora, Autumn Leaves... There are more and when I think about it they all play very different types of metal. It's not like we have a special sound here in Denmark, I think.
There are also a lot of upcoming bands (like ourselves?), which help each other so that everybody gets a fair chance. And there is an increasing number of people going to the metal concerts in our area, and still everybody seems to know each other. I believe that it has changed a lot during the last year, before that there wasn't very crowded at metal concerts. At least that's the way it is in our part of the country - and that's even pretty far away from any major cities.
-Close this interview as you wish......
Well, thanks a lot for letting us tell about ourselves and we'll make sure to get a copy of METAL INVADER when it's out - let us know!. To the readers: Hopefully some of you got interested in our music. If so, visit our homepage at http://www.geocities.com/composmentisband or contact us for a copy of 'Quadrology of Sorrow' (4 US$ / 8 DM). If not, just keep an eye on us in the future as we hope to sign a record contract soon...