PRESENT YOURSELVES OUR READERS...
"My name is Stijn Van Cauter, founder, and until this date, sole member of 'The Ethereal', a nihilistic and raw funeral doom project from Belgium."
WHO ARE ETHEREAL AS BAND MEMBERS?
"Just me, i play the guitar, bass and do all vocals as well as drum programming, soundscapes and keyboards. I also played electric violin on the CDr release of 'From Funeral Skies'."
WHEN DID YOU HAVE FOUNDED THE BAND?
"The Ethereal concept was created early 2002, the band wasn't officially founded until may 2002."
WOULD YOU LIKE TO TALK ABOUT THE VERY FIRST BEGINNING OF BAND...
"The first months were mostly spend setting up the right concept for The Ethereal and figuring out the sound i wanted. At the time i already had another funeral doom project and i wanted The Ethereal to be very different from that one. Once that was taken care off, the actual writing of the tracks didn't take all that much time."
WHAT'S ABOUT YOUR PREVIOUS RECORDING-EFFORTS?
"The only other release beside the recent re-release of 'From Funeral Skies' is the original CDr release."
WHAT'S ABOUT YOUR FOLLOWING?
"I dont have any real plans for a new release, though a concept for a possible CD exists and one new track, part of that concept has already been recorded."
THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTS IN YOUR HISTORY?
"may 2002: founded The Ethereal, november 2002: released the first version of 'From Funeral Skies'. This album was 'album of the month' at doom-metal.com in april 2003. And then came the re-release in october 2005. Music by 'The Ethereal' was also used on an abstract short movie by electrohead (http://electroheadfilms.com)."
ANY INTRODUCTIVE WORDS TO "FROM FUNERAL SKIES"?
"Since its the first 'The Ethereal' album, it was also some kind of prototype for the 'The Ethereal' sound. The concept was pretty solid (decay of mankind), but the sound wasn't in its final stage yet, so the album ended up being a bit more experimental than i wanted. The sound quality of the first album wasn't too impressive on top of that. Most of those things got fixed in the re-release and the extra track that appeared on that re-release was the perfect example of the 'old' The Ethereal sound."
THE SOUND SEEMS A RELIGIOUS CEREMONY, DO YOU AGREE?
"Some of the tracks do have a dirge like feel to them, something thats present in religious song/ceremony and i think the use of Chruch organ adds to that feel. I did put some sort of ceremonial elements in my music, but i wouldn't call it religious of any kind."
THERE'S A STRONG DOOMISH BACKGROUND IN YOUR SOUND, RIGHT?
"Definately. Dark, gloomy and doomy atmospheres are the most important elements i use when creating the overall mood of an album or track. For 'From Funeral Skies' i did take it further and tried to create a more nihilistic, cold and even horrific atmosphere."
WHAT'S ABOUT THE PRODUCTION OF ALBUM?
"The original recordings and mixing only took about 2-3 months to complete. For the re-release i did spend alot more time to get things recorded and mixed so the tracks would sound just the way i wanted them. For the next album, if i ever release a next one, i plan on a more raw sound. An example of that can be heard in the one track i already recorded for the new concept. It's available on my website."
ANY PARTICULAR CONCEPT CONCERNING THE ALBUM?
"The album tries to tell people of the decay of their race, interlaced with hate for their failure and ignorance and the damage they do to everything else while they slowly destroy themselves. This all is seem from the point of view of someone who -on one hand- wants to save mankind from themselves, but on the other hand also see the pointlessness of both this task and his own life."
WHAT'S THE MOOD OF IT?
"'Nihilistic' is probably the best word that fits the mood of the concept within 'From Funeral Skies'. The contradictions in the concept lead to hopelessness and depression and eventually to total nihilism."
THE MOST SALIENT ASPECTS OF YOUR NEW ALBUM?
"I think the raw production and the overall cold feel of the album are most prominent, at least those are the features i tried to put upfront. Looking back at reviews the album received, it seems that people mostly noticed the nihilistic and cold feel of the music as well as it being slow and harsh."
WHAT'S ABOUT THE FEEDBACK?
"The album got quite positive feedback overall, alot more than i ever expected for this kind of project. The first version of 'From Funeral Skies' even became 'album of the month' at doom-metal.com."
WHAT DO YOU WANT TO COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR SOUND?
"The sound itself serves the purpose to strengthen the concept, since the way i write leaves room for alot of different interpretations. But sound to me is also an experimental medium and in every album there are new things i try out."
"Not really, since The Ethereal is a solo-project and i don't plan to have any other people involved in it."
YOUR LIFE'S PHILOSOPHY?
"Very similar to the concept of 'From Funeral Skies' actually."
THE FUTURE OF THE BAND?
"Besides the possible released of a second album there are no other plans. When i originally started this project i planned it to a one-album only band."
ANY LAST REMARKS?
"Thanx for these questions. My site with the latest news on The Ethereal and my other project + unreleased tracks is located at http://svc.nulll-void.com"