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Interview - Juan Dominquez (Atsphear)

Interview with Juan Dominquez from Atsphear
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 02 March 2014, 11:38 AM

In 2005, from Spain, with “New Line System” we were introduced to ATSPHEAR, now with almost a decade under their belt and with their new release of “Redshift”, our own Steinmetal got to sit down with Juan Dominquez with an all tell interview.

​​​Hello Juan, pleased to have you for this interview for Metal Temple. What have you been up to recently? ​​​

We’ve been lately focused on promoting ‘Redshift’ all over the world, and rehearsing for the imminent shows.

​​​Recently your band Atsphear released its new album, “Redshift”, an album that honestly surprised me due to its musical proceedings. But before lunging into the album, a few words about Atsphear if you please? ​​​

We’re a band built over honesty. The five of us are passionate musicians with different influences, and we do what we do best: Put those influences in common and making the music we like. We’ve just released Redshift, which is quite different than our previous records, and we’ll keep on moving forward to different styles.

​​​ “Redshift”, via Art Gates Records, is certainly a change for Atsphear as the band has become something more than the average modern Melodic Death Metal, at times similar to Gothenburg Death. What do you make of this musical shift? ​​​

As I said before, we make the music that we want to do in each single moment. We’re really open-minded when it comes to listen to new artists. So we are challenged by change… We want to make the most of this shift, exploring it to the limit… and guess where it leads us to.

​​​Do you believe that Atsphear’s current music, as it shows on “Redshift”, is the ultimate goal that you guys wished to reach? Is it the band’s new standard? ​​​

Absolutely not. We are so proud of this record, but as time passes, we change our minds. We let our environment interact with our music, so I can almost assure you that our next step will be in a different direction. On the other hand, maybe when it’s time to release a new record, we’ve settled down and we want to make a similar record. Only time will tell.

​​​Is the album’s title connected in any way to that musical change? If not, what does it mean? ​​​

Not intentionally. I mean, Redshift is an astronomical concept, which describes the shift of the furthest light beams in the Universe towards red spectrum. It helps astronomers determine that Universe is expanding. Our music is always expanding as well, so indirectly, yes, it is related.

​​​What do you make of the track “My Grave”? Undoubtedly one of your finest of work ever achieved. Is it a sort of requiem or something deeper? ​​​

We’ve never referred to it as a requiem, but I think that you’ve nailed it. It’s a sad story about the consequences of too much curiosity… It talks about the desperation of humanity’s last individual as he can’t reach his goal. So it talks about the loss of hope. But don’t be fooled, the whole concept is not sad at all… just hard to understand.

​​​Generally, what can you comment on the songwriting of the band, especially with what is demonstrated on “Redshift”? ​​​

As you can realize throughout the whole tracklist, every song has its own personality. And the reason for that is we don’t ‘plan’ how a song must be. We just sit down together and listen to some basic ideas that usually Sergio or Manu bring to the rehearsal room. When we have chosen the best of them, we develop that idea bringing new shades into it. Obviously, depending on the day, the message of the lyrics… the final song blooms its own way. It’s our modus operandi, we just let the music be.

​​​Is there a specific track that made a difference for you? ​​​

We are pretty agree that the song that defines us is Imperio. It has everything that makes us who we are, put together in a single track. As Sergio says… it’s more like a movie, with different episodes, so epic!

​​​As a part of the European Metal scene, what do you think of it in general? Do you believe that is diversity is a blessing or a curse? ​​​

We think it’s a double-edged sword. On one hand, the fact that there are so many bands is challenging, and encouraging to be more original, to be better musicians. But on the other hand, it’s so hard to the audience to focus on one band and follow it, so the scene is quite less ‘solid’, and we, the bands, are mere survivors.

​​​The music industry, on its current formation, is on the verge of collapse. Does it considered an evolution, what do you think? ​​​

As in the previous question, I can answer both ways. It is good that the industry evolves, but it’s hard to wonder what will replace the old record companies. Now there is no investment on amateur bands, making it almost impossible to make a life on music, which is sad.

​​​What about the support for “Redshift”, what do you have planned? ​​​

We are now focused on play it live. We are planning some gigs in our area, and contacting bands from other cities to play all over Spain. Right now, we are working hard on rehearsing.

​​​Juan, I wish to thank you for your time and effort on this interview. I wish you guys all the best and once again, a wonderful prospect. Any last words for the readers? ​​​

First of all, thank you very much for your support. To all the readers, we would like to recommend them to listen to the full record, in a relaxing atmosphere, and focus on the details of the album. It is very complex, and it has an inspiring message…


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Edited 01 October 2022

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