Interview by MALEFIC


Introduce yourself and you band Morthond for those who may not know. When did Morthond form? What does Morthond mean?
I am Thorstadt, the sole member of Morthond. I started this project in January of 2001. Morthond is the name of a river in some of J.R.R. Tolkiens writings meaning “Black Root.” Despite the origin of the name, I’d like to make it clear that this is not a Tolkien band. I simply like the meaning of the word and the way it sounds and thought it would well represent my music.

I see that Morthond is a one person band, why is this? Do you see yourself adding any members in the future? Or would you like to?

I want the music to be exactly the why that I want it to be, my own perfect vision. Another reason is that I don’t want to rely on other people, I want to do things when I want do them without any laggers! As for adding any additional members, I wont say absolutely not because I could change my mind but it’s very unlikely that I will.

Give me some descriptions of your music… What do the sounds reflect and what do you hope they will reflect onto others? How do you feel when you make it? Where are you when you make it, as in a state of mind?

Early/mid 90’s style BM with its own identity and originality, BM with thought and effort put behind it. A deeper answer can be found in the response to question #16. I’m usually in a neutral state of mind when I write music, that way I can concentrate on the sound I’m going for without other thoughts interfering with the process.

What are some influences of yours? Black metal and/or other…

Musically I have quite a few influences. The most direct ones would include Burzum, Abyssic Hate, Kristallnacht/Funeral, and old Polish bands. There are non-BM influences as well but they’re very indirect and I’m probably the only person who would hear it.

How do you record your music? Studio? At home? Dungeon?

I record everything on my own so I can go at my own pace. I used a mediocre 4 track before but now I’m using much better equipment.

If I were to compare your music to something besides Wyrd (Finland), what would you add to that? Not only musically and other Black metal bands, but life experiences as well?

Well I think only one of my songs sounds like Wyrd because of its depressive, slow droning pace. I’d like to compare my music to other unique BM bands that have something to offer. Aside from the emotions behind it, I’d hope it doesn’t relate to any experiences that one could have in this lifetime.

What do you think of this new ‘war metal’ trend? Last time I talked with you, you didn’t seem too keen on it.

I think most of the Australian bands are good but as far as this Canadian/American stuff goes, it’s in one ear and out the other. If I want brutal, intense metal I listen to good Death Metal or old Thrash. Also, the mentality behind their scene reminds me of S.H.A.R.P.s. I don’t want anything to do with it.

Whom are you in contact with in the Black metal scene? (as in bands, labels, distros, zines, people, etc) And what do you think of the US Black metal scene? Are there any bands you could recommend that you like?

I don’t want to start dropping names like so many bands do so they can give shout outs to their “buddies” in the scene or have people say “Wow! You talk to that guy? You must be Kult then!” I’m in contact with people that have similar, if not the same beliefs and are truly dedicated to Metal. The U.S. BM scene is very diverse. From Old School BM to symphonic new wave faggot cosmic art, every type of BM is played here. It is safe to say I can’t stand most of the U.S. bands but there are some good ones out there, such as: Grand Belials Key (hands down best USBM ever IMO) and of course their side project Arghoslent is just as good…Shroud of Despondency, Ritual (R.I.P.), Xasthur, Nachtmystium, Harvist, Nosvrolok, Crimson Moon, Cult of Daath, Acid Enema (fucking horrible name!), Winds of the Black Mountains, and of course the international Judas Iscariot and Weltmacht are great. There’s a lot of US bands I haven’t heard that seem interesting and I’m sure there’s other good bands that I’m forgetting about.

Tell the readers about the release of yours “Somber deathwinds”, give some details as to what goes in to it, and what goes into being a one person band.

I released the “Somber Deathwinds” demo early this year to roughly less than 50 copies. Recently it was Re-released to 150 copies on Profane Productions and will soon be released as a split on cassette format with an Australian band called Empire of Hate (dirty, sick BM) on Heiden Hart in The Netherlands. Recording this was a very stressful process, it was my first time recording music and I barely practiced beforehand. A one man project can be very difficult at times; in a band you can concentrate on 1-2 instruments, while in this situation you must concentrate on everything.

What are some of your goals with Morthond? What motivates you to play black metal in times like today?

My goal is to be 100% satisfied with my music and keep making it that way for as long as I can. I want Morthond to infect peoples minds and totally change their perception of reality. In times like today I HAVE to play BM to keep sane, it’s one of few ways to escape this dreary place.

What do you think about Suicide? And what is hate about to you?

I disagree with the whole “suicide is weak” phrase that little bitches like to throw around. Suicide is the ultimate way out. It’s the point where you realize you can’t take one more day of the pain and mental torture life has inflicted upon you and there’s no hope inside you left. To be consciously aware that you are ending your life and there will be no waking up the next day and you actually go through with it must take a lot of balls and I personally think it’s an honorable way to go. Although it is true some people do it for stupid reasons like they lost their girlfriend or something like that…that’s where the “weakness” comes in. If you are that much of a weakling you SHOULD kill yourself. It’s not like you’re worth anything… Hate has always come first nature to me. You cannot have love without hate or vice versa, but I think people are born (or end up) feeling one more than the other. A lot of people just throw the word around without meaning it but when I say I hate something that means I actually hate it.

What do you do aside from Morthond? Like hobbies, interests etc…

There’s really not too many things that interest me…I’m always trying to improve my abilities on the guitar/bass, read, or just try to occupy my time somehow. Soon I’ll go back to college, so that will take up a lot of time.

Are you, or have you ever been involved in any other bands/side projects other than Morthond? And do you have any hopes of ever playing live?

No, Morthond is the first and only project I’ve been involved in. I consider starting a side project someday because I have a lot of ideas that don’t fit in the Morthond criteria but I’d like to have additional members for it to make things easier on myself and make sure it wont sound like “Morthond 2.” However this probably won’t happen anytime soon, I’m going concentrate on this first. Playing live is another possibility that I wont completely rule out but it’s not very likely to happen.

Are there any other releases besides “Somber death winds” available?

No, that’s all I have so far.

Rumor has it that there are a couple labels that are interested in your band, could you give some details on that? Also, I hear you are taking a familiar path by having some sort of release through Profane Productions (a sub div. of Makahru), when will this be available? And how do you get along with Mike (Makahru)?

There’s a 90% chance I will have a deal for a full length with an American label called Bindrune Records. Marty and I just need to discuss the details but it’s pretty much going to happen. As I said before, Profane Prod. re-released “Somber…” 11-15-2002. It includes an intro track that wasn’t on the self-released version and is the same version that will be released on Heiden Hart. I get along with Mike quite well; he doesn’t pretend to be anything he’s not and he’s dedicated to the scene 100%! He has strongly supported Morthond from the beginning.

If you could describe what sort of feeling and/or message you’d like to give through Morthond, what would it be?

Most of my songs reflect somber and/or morbid feelings. At least that’s what most people have told me that have heard the demo. Musically there’s a message of longing. Longing for a return to pagan earth, longing for knowledge of the mysteries of this world, longing for an escape from reality. Lyrically I don’t think there’s really an overall message behind Morthond. Some songs don’t have a message at all, while others may. Both musically and lyrically I try to give each song its own individual identity.

What drew you or called you into Black metal, how did your involvement begin?

I’ve been listening to metal from a very young age, but in my early teens I heard BM and knew right away it was what I had been searching for all my life. “Music is what speaks to our souls…”and on a spiritual, philosophical, and even political level, I connected with it instantly.

If a label were to offer you a recording budget to enter some studio, what would you do? How would you feel about this?

I don’t think I would do it. As I said before I need to do things at my own pace, especially when I’m doing everything. If it was a band situation I think I could do it but as a one-man band it would be pretty tough. Maybe if I was a better musician. If they were willing to spend the money still, I would ask for it to buy better equipment and give them back whatever’s left over.

Being from California, have you noticed the people who attend black metal shows? Do you like to go to shows/concerts? Why or why not? What Black metal scene (if any) do you think you would fit into best?

Well first off, half of them don’t speak English and think they’re more metal than the “white boys.” The rest walk around with their Marduk/Dark Funeral shirts on or they all wear the same Darkthrone shirt like it’s a fucking uniform or something with their noses stuck up in the air thinking they are the biggest metal head to ever walk the earth. Ask them if they like Graveland, Azaghal, Clandestine Blaze, or Absurd and they’ll say something like “uh, I’ve never heard of them before” or how about a classic like “I only listen to Nordic bands.” That’s half the reason I don’t go to shows around here anymore. The other half is that nothing worthwhile ever plays out here. All the local bands try to rip off Dissection, Immortal, and their favorite Swedish blast-beat heroes and can’t even do that good! I’d best fit into a scene that is based around genuine Black Metal and consists of devoted, thinking people.

What gives you the will to live (if anything?)

Basically I don’t feel that I’m done yet. There has to be more to this existence than what there seems to be, it can’t just be “work until you die.” I still have many unanswered questions and don’t feel I have accomplished enough in life yet. Each day that goes by I grow stronger and I will not stop until I have evolved to the next level of existence. Uncompromising hatred and means of revenge are also motivation to stay alive. Crush the weaklings and backstabbers!

Talk about what you would like to accomplish with Morthond, what plans are in the future for you? Talk about some new songs and what musical/philosophical path will Morthond take in the future/near future? Future plans?

Plans are to continue working on new songs for future releases. New ones I have so far are mostly in the style of the ones on the demo, but perhaps with more solid song structures. I can’t be certain what path Morthond shall take in the future but I can guarantee it will be one that is true to myself.

Do you have any favorite songs that you have created that best define you or that you think people will take a liking to the most? And which instrument do you feel most comfortable playing or enjoy most?

All of my songs best define me. They each come from deep within my soul and are part of my “vision.” My personal favorite song right now however is “Lost in the Fog of Dissonance.” It contains almost all of the emotions that go into Morthond and came out exactly the way I envisioned it. I’m most comfortable with guitar, it’s the first instrument I’ve tried to pick up and creativity comes natural to me while playing it. Of course bass is enjoyable to play as well, but guitar is always the instrument I focus on the most while listening to music so that’s the instrument I focus on playing the most.