Rise Of Avernus: Of Absolute Darkness and Auditory Intrigue
Rise Of Avernus is a symphonic doom metal band from Australia ready to envelope the world in their own intriguing brand on absolute darkness. Eigengrau is the fourth studio release from Rise Of Avernus, mixed and mastered by Logan Mader of Once Human – and now available worldwide through Code666 and Bandcamp! A compelling work of absolute artistry, Eigengrau is sure to enrapture all adventurous music aficionados all across this grim and dying planet. Highwire Daze Online recently caught up with Ben vanVollenhoven, lead vocalist and guitarist for the almighty Rise Of Avernus, to discuss their Eigengrau magnum opus, upcoming tour with Once Human, time spent in Japan with Eternal Tears of Sorrow, and other topics of interest. Read on…
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Rise Of Avernus, and how long the has the band been in existence.
Hello. My name is Ben, I’m the songwriter/vocalist/guitarist for Rise Of Avernus. We’ve been around since 2012.
Where are you based out of and what is your local music scene like there?
We are based in Sydney, Australia. The scene here is pretty good! Sydney has a solid amount of sludge and black metal at the moment… We have a lot of talented musicians and bands in the region.
Is there any overall story or concept behind the title Eigengrau?
Eigengrau is the name of the deep grey shade the human eye sees in absolute darkness. It’s a German word which basically translates to ‘intrinsic grey’. This album is an exploration of different facets of darkness. It draws influence from many places… occultism, dream states, neurological phenomena, H. P. Lovecraft, Carl Jung’s psychology, religious indoctrination, self determinism…
Select any two songs from Eigengrau and what inspired the lyrics?
Eigenlicht – This track is about people’s inability to comprehend absolute darkness. There’ll always be a projection of light, even if it’s completely imaginary. We don’t like accepting things for what they are, we have to try to interfere and colour things in our own way rather than letting it be.
Ad Infinitum – I suppose it’s about a type of person a lot of us encounter through life… no matter how much help you offer, or how much good you search for within them, the end result is simply that this person is spineless. They act like they’re drowning and need help but slap your hand away each time you offer. They love playing the martyr.
Who did the cover art for Eigengrau and how much input did you have on it?
Seth Siro Anton, we basically explained the concept of Eigengrau to him and left him to his own devices… Input is one thing, interference is another.
What could one expect from a live Rise Of Avernus show?
Grandiosity, misery, beauty, release, connection. We remove our identities and act as conduits for the music. The last thing we’d want to do would be to look like a bunch of muppets jumping around on stage, haha.
Has Rise of Avernus ever played here in the States of plan to do so in future days?
We haven’t yet, but who knows? We would very much like to.
What was the experience like touring with Eternal Tears of Sorrow in Japan?
It being our first international tour, it was pretty exciting. EToS are a fantastic bunch of guys, very humble and down to earth. Japan was very welcoming to us. Everyone we encountered was really kind and hospitable.
How did your recent show with Paradise Lost go and what were some of the highlights?
It was a great show. Paradise Lost were fantastic. We played after Cruciform who also had a stellar performance… the highlight for us was being able to debut two tracks from Eigengrau. They seemed to go down pretty well.
What are you looking forward to the most about your upcoming tour with Once Human?
We get to meet the man that mixed our album face to face, plus touring with our mates in Hollow World and In Death… It’ll be a really fun tour.
What is your favorite beer of choice and why?
Grolsch (the imported version). It being a Dutch lager, me being a Dutch dude… it just tastes so damn good, haha.
What is it you’d like to listener to remember most after hearing Eigengrau for the first time?
It’s not up to me to choose what people remember, if anyone takes anything away from it I’m happy.
Any final words of wisdom?
Get your asses out to live shows and support your local music scene.
Rise Of Avernus is:
Ben vanVollenhoven – Vocals, Guitar, Orchestrations.
Andrew Craig – Drums & Percussion.
Mares Refalaeda – Vocals & Keyboards
D’wayne Murray – Bass Guitar
(Interview by Ken Morton)
Rise Of Avernus on Facebook