The end of last year saw the Athenian’s, Siva Six, release DeathCult, their fifth studio album, which came out on the label, Alfa Matrix. There were two years poured into the creation of this stunning album and the tracks are amalgamations of synths and beats with classical elements, all tied up with Z’s guttural vocals. It is a truly beautiful opus on the dark delights that await those that pass the veil. The lovely Z spoke to us about DeathCult and what makes Siva Six tick.
Welcome to the downward spiral that is Onyx! Please ignore the harpies, as they are grumpy because we put them on a diet.
You released your first album, Rise New Flesh, back in 2005. Did you ever think Siva six would still be releasing albums in 2022?
Z– Hell no… we thought we could have a good ride for approximately 10 years but as always, making plans is a part of reality. The other parts are a complicated equation, nevertheless I feel proud of what we have achieved so far. I assure you, it was not easy starting an Industrial/Dark Electro band in 00’s in Athens /GR
Can you tell as how the band started back then in Athens?
Z– We where just a couple of youngsters full of dreams and love for music, we had a hunger for life, to explore, to create, to do it our way. We started very young, we should have been around 15 years old when we had our first gig, trying to play some hardcore/punk/metal stuff. As soon as we got into Goth and EBM a whole new great world appeared and we wanted to be part of it. Since then we spent countless hours on the project and with faith, love and will, we made it happen.
You guys are also involved in the Greek metal scene as well, so when the band first started, what was the industrial/metal scene like back then and do you think it has changed?
Z– Along the way and more precisely, during our demo days, we were offered to play keyboards in 2 of the biggest Greek bands, me with SepticFlesh and Noid with Rotting Christ. Although our skills were not that great, I guess they loved our looks lol…Seth from SepticFlesh, once said that you guys look like pinheads son’s…,as for the Industrial /Metal scene, it was great back then, everyone wanted a piece of it in their music. Rob Zombie, Manson, NIN, Rammstein, that was the heydays of that scene and sure we were enjoyed it as well. Yes, its not a trend anymore, you hardly hear the good stuff with the exception of 3Teeth and a few more I guess…
November 2021 saw you release your fifth studio album, DeathCult. It took 2 years for you to give life to brilliant album, so what took so long?
Z– Thank you for the compliment! I have been hearing it a lot about “DeathCult” and honestly puts a smile on my face. It always takes too much time to do an album that I am happy with. It takes me more than a month to do the pre-production for 1 track. I was into some deep personal shit, living in Leipzig at the time and it was hard for me to focus. We changed producer and that was not an easy one to deal with, especially when you work with a certain producer for 15 years
The 2 year wait was well worth it. You said in an interview that you enjoyed the work of Erik Saite. What was it about Gnossienne No 1 that inspired you to incorporating it into the mesmerising track Ghost Dance?
Z– I love Satie’s work, its utterly unique. His works are simply haunting, so..all in all, I was obsessed with his track, “Gnossienne No1”. I wanted to do a cover of it and here you go…. It was the hardest track to deal with and it took me 2 and half months to finish the pre-production. From a point and on, I started to be delusional, thinking that Satie is punishing me because he was still not happy with my outcome. I was desperate hearing it over and over again and for many hours per day. I was stuck, hearing his piano theme in a loop, it was killing me mentally until I found a way out and finished the song. Totally happy with the final result and hopefully with Satie’s blessings. Definitely a track that has a great feedback and brought many on our ship
The album is all about death, from serial killers to the after life. Can you tell us more about this?
Z– Death and Life, that’s the total balance and opposition at the same time, although both part of the whole that is existence. In this album I chose to focus on Death, it felt more like kin at the time… so I dove into its ocean, tried to understand a bit more. I twisted the angle. I watched and I asked to learn more. I think I did. Death is vital. Death is a path. Death is the transition. Death makes life unique. Death is all around us. Our societies, since day one, worshiped Death, not in a good way….its easy to understand that if you look carefully. Which is the god we mostly obey to?…it’s Death. We hate, we take advantage of others, we step on our friends, lovers, colleagues, we will do anything it takes to fulfill our desires and twisted plans. We think we control our lives but we are mostly nothing more than just the pathetic servants of Death’s lowest quality…the vain and ignorant, close minded tourists of life’s miracle.
What is it about the grotesque and macabre that inspires you and your music?
Z– More or less that’s what has always attracted me in music, The grotesque and the Macabre. My music heroes were drug addicts, alcoholics, outcasts and dangerous, damned and the tracks that I was turned on, listened to, were always the one’s that made me feel otherworldly. I cannot really put it in a frame, as a music and lyric creator, its just a feeling and when I hear it, it rings in me, I know that I am where I want to be.
You recorded the album with Dinos Prassas, also known as Psychon, who mixed and mastered DeathCult. Can you tell us about working with Psychon and what he brings to the Siva Six albums?
Z– Psychon has also done the production on this album besides Mix/Mastering. We have known each other since the early 00’s. We met at the rehearsal studio that Siva Six and his band was rehearsing at the time. He is a great guy, very talented, easy going and skillful sound design wise. Meanwhile, the timing to do another album with our ex producer was not a good one, so I talked with Psychon. I asked him to do a couple of demos and when I heard with what he had come up with, I heard the ringing in my ears….Psychon brings all of his positive and artistic aura in our music, working along side with his big orchestras, guitars, basses and the rest of the weird stuff he is into. We love his work and final touch he did in “DeathCult”.
George Klontzas of Teknovore spoke to me about how much admiration he has for Siva Six and was super proud of the cover you guys did together of Save Me God. This seems like a close friendship.
Z– Its an honor and I am glad to hear George’s feelings about us! We have met a couple of times in Athens & Edinburgh. I don’t really get excited by collaboration offers, my time is limited but when he offered to me the singing position in his Dark Soho cover, which is one of my all time favorite bands, I immediately accepted! I am happy and proud at the same time for the final outcome.
Which song do you think you are going to really enjoy playing live?
Z– I will totally enjoy to play live again dear, since it has been 2 years and a half since our last gig, so all in all at this time, what really matters to me is to get back on the stage which I feel the urge to do so but “Ghost Dance” is the one I really can’t wait to experience on stage.
Talking of live music, how has covid affected the band as far as touring and are there any plans to do so soon?
Z– Some gigs in Germany & Greece were cancelled or postponed, we had no gigs for the last 2 and a half years. Lets face it…it’s a disaster. A ray of light has come in at the moment, so we will take the chance to do 4 live shows in Greece and hopefully our agent will sort out some gigs in Europe but its way too much complicated at the moment, since the line up bills and tours are full with the 2020 schedules. It’s sad but at least, since we get this feedback on a daily basis, that “DeathCult” is our best album so far but unfortunately the doors are not opened as wide as it would probably be pre-covid era.
You have toured with some legendary acts, so who was the most fun?
Z– We have shared the stage with some really great bands indeed. Tuske Ludder are great and funny people. We have became good friends with Hein from Theatre of Tragedy. Type o Negative were such a good people and Clan of Xymox are very cool and funny, I love Ronnie and we used to hang out a lot.
What music and bands got you into the EBM/industrial scene?
Z– I think it was mostly Ministry in the very early 90’s, Aphex Twin, Front 242, Einsturzende Neubauten but at the time the whole scene was on a launch and so many new bands were going out with a bang!
Who really gets you excited now about music?
Z– Without a doubt NIN and Trend Reznor projects, Chealsea Wolfe, 3TEETH, Wulfband, Perdubator, Soundtracks
Right at this moment in time, you have the ability to teleport to a beautiful sunny beach with blue waters or a gloomy cemetery full of mausoleums and famous artists……. where do you choose to go and why?
Z– If the cemetery would be the resurrection spot of a few of my favorite artists…. I would definitely wanted to be around and chat with them…. if not I would rather enjoy the sea thinking of them.
What is in the future for Siva Six?
Z– Our contract with Alfa Matrix is over and we have started some demo’s but as usual, it will take time to finish the pre-production. To be totally honest with you….I have no idea. There is too much mental strain all around us and the times we live in seem relentless. Hardships and setbacks are on the daily menu on everyone’s table. We will do some shows hopefully…and we will take it as it comes, you know..thinking a lot about the future does not really make sense, good things or bad things will happen or they will not.
Thank you for the dance while Chaos has her way with the world and thank you for your exquisite music!
Z– It was my pleasure and honour dear Adele ! Thank you.