Anthems from Prague launched their debut album ‘Consciousness‘ in November last year. The five-piece successfully blends progressive metal(core) with hardcore sound, making for one of the most interesting bands coming from the Old Continent in the recent years.
Define the mission of Anthems.
Our aim is to produce great songs which talk to people. We are projecting our thoughts and emotions to our music, because we think that it could say far more than just words. Our main focus is to forward those messages to a broad audience all across the world through our live performances, which are always very powerful to us. Playing live is our passion.
Tell me about the creative process that informed your debut album “Consciousness” and the themes it captures.
Once we decided to record the album, we immediately started figuring out the main theme – what’s it all going to be about? In the end, it was quite simple, because it just came up from our personal experience (as it always does). We think that the message (and also music)is always honest and most powerful presented this way. Composing every song was quite different. Some of them just came up from jamming and then we worked on details together, some songs were entirely composed by me or our other guitarist… You never know when the right idea strikes you, so we are mostly making our songs in those exact moments, no matter if we are all together or alone. Despite that, album has its consistency both in its story and also in small ideas, which are sometimes repeated during the album (both musical and lyrical).
What is the message you are trying to give with “Consciousness”?
In a nutshell, our debut is about being aware of your inner self and about acting on it (acting on your emotions, thoughts, patterns, etc). It’s about moving forward, releasing yourself from chains you’ve been put in by yourself and by the society and about the way to achieve “perfection.” Main message is that people should be honest to themselves and aim to become the ones they really are. It’s about seeking inner happiness and peace.
How did you document the music while it was being formulated?
Usually, key ideas are coming when I’m not able to record anything properly (like when I’m in the shower, pub, walking on street…), so I mostly record such ideas on a phone recorder with singing or guitar, if I’m lucky enough to have one near at the moment. It’s the most important for me, that the particular idea is captured (no matter in what quality). Then I’m sure I’m not going to forget it and it can flow in my head, where I compose most of our songs. Ideas just grow into songs there, and when I feel it’s time, I’m taking guitar and make it real. Then we complete it together in rehearsal and we use mostly Cubase to make demo recordings. In the past I have been also using Guitar pro 5 to forward main themes to other band mates.
Is the dynamic flow of the pieces carefully architected?
Yes it is. On “Consciousness” we really wanted every song to be at the right place. As I mentioned before, there is also a kind of a story, which is evolving through the whole recording and holds entire album together. We definitely have tendencies to see our music as a bigger picture more than as separate songs.
Describe the approach to recording the album.
We decided to work with people we’ve been cooperating for a long time already. We know each other really good and it’s always great to work with someone, who exactly knows what are you up to. Basically, we made demos of 5 songs and then finished them completely, so we were able to release the video for the first single and later also the lyric video for the second single. In the meantime, we worked on the second half of the album and when everything was ready, we went to the recording studio again to finish it. According to my opinion, this kind of approach was really helpful, because in between those recording sessions we were able to evolve enough (both musically and personally) to create songs and the whole album exactly as we’ve imagined in the beginning. We really took our time and we believe that it was definitely worth it. Thanks to Damián Kučera (SOUND RAPIDS) and Jaroslav Celujko (JARO SOUND) for making it all possible!
How long “Consciousness” was in the making?
The whole process lasted for almost 2 years. It’s been a whole year more than we expected at the beginning, but we believe that in the end everything happened at the right moment.
Which bands or artists influenced your work on the release?
For me it’s definitely Textures. Their approach to making their music, albums and lyrics is inspiring me for a long time so far and they also just really kick asses. Other influences came definitely from Architects, While She Sleeps and more great, metalcore bands.
What is your view on technology in music?
I guess that everything is moving forward with a tremendous speed and it really opens more and more possibilities of making, producing and performing music (and everything in between). I’m the guy that uses one distortion, delay and tuner (and records ideas on the phone recorder), and I’m still happy, but I feel (and I’m right) that I’m really missing out a lot of great possibilities to bring my music to a whole new level, so I’ve been trying to evolve into that lately, because I think that musicians (and everyone else) should definitely stay up to date. Every new possibility of expressing yourself is crucial. Luckily, our other guitarist Honza has that huge pedalboard and is able to produce all the electronics that are really important to our music. I personally have a lot of things to explore.
Do you see your music as serving a purpose beyond music?
Definitely. Expressing yourself is always a message, and music is a great way to do so. My lyrics are mostly based on my personal experience, and especially on my way to achieve inner happiness and peace lately, and I think that a lot of people can relate to that. My aim is to produce music, which has a potential to help people with their personal struggles or anything else. Writing and performing our music is also a kind of a therapy for me. It also helps me to clear many important things out.
What are your plans for the future?
Currently we focus on promoting our new album “Consciousness,” in a month we are going to shoot a music video and then we’re playing a lot of shows across the CZ. In the end of 2018, we plan our first bigger European tour and it’s all only a beginning…
Consciousness is available from Bandcamp here.