After the release of their first album, “Red ~ Phantom Delusive”, The Black Court have proven themselves as very kind for an interview. We talked to the bassist Marcel Schön about the career of the band, the above-mentioned full-length and their plans for the future.
Hi Marcel and welcome on Metalpit. How are you living these days after the release of your first album, “Red ~ Phantom Delusive”?
Well, it was quite a ride. We’re happy that we’ve accomplished writing and recording our debut album. After our release gig in January we’re back where we belong: in our rehearsal room, writing new music; and planning a few gigs to promote the album.
From your point of view are there lot of differences between the previous EP or what happened is a simple evolution without big changes?
I think it was an evolution in a sense that we’ve taken certain parts in songs that worked previously and wrapped them in new, better structures. Three years passed between our EP and the album. In that time we constantly worked on new songs, discarding parts that didn’t work, writing parts that represent the style of music we want to play even more. We’ve grown not only individually as musicians in that time, but we also grew as a band. One important change was at second guitar. With the addition of Alex we’ve become more versatile. And he’s one hell of a dude, as well. Fitted perfectly into our line-up right from the get-go. He brought some different musical influences which probably will be heard on our next release.
In certain parts we can hear the similarity with the classic bands of the genre, such as At The Gates and Killswitch Engage, but in other transitions I noticed a great personality. During the writing process of the songs, how much weight did you give to various influences?
We just play music. That’s basically it. Our big advantage is that we all like different styles of metal and music in general. Our guitarist Sebastian is more on the American side of the melodic death metal spectrum while our drummer Phil is more Scandinavian in a sense that he writes most of our more melodic stuff. By combining styles we like we try to create something exciting. We will see how Alex who is very much into Swedish old-school death metal will be able to contribute to that.
Is there anything peculiar behind the album? Something that connects all the songs?
“Red ~ Phantom Delusive” is not a concept album by any means. But yes, there is a broader theme that connects all the songs. Lyrically we try to focus on bleak aspects of life. The album title refers to all the delusions, confusion, and disturbances that we encounter in life and the mostly negative consequences they bring with them.
Is there anything you appreciate the most about this release? Something that happened during its creation, a song in particular or something else…
I can only speak for myself but as I’ve said before: it was quite a ride. Releasing our debut album took us longer than expected. But it was worth it. Hearing it the first time in full length was truly special. Especially because we’ve recorded most of the instruments individually on our own and nobody quite knew what the final result would sound like.
This is your first album but you’re already active from eight years. How many things have changed in this time?
There hasn’t been that much of a change since the band was formed in 2011. We’re still five guys who love making music and having a great time. Over the years we didn’t have too much trouble with line-up changes. Since our first demo recordings in 2013 we only had a change at second guitar in 2016 when Alex joined us. Things really started going after we recorded our EP in 2015 and were able to play our first short tour with gigs in southern Germany, Austria and Slovenia (MetalDays) in 2017. This effort and experience culminated in the recording of “Red ~ Phantom Delusive”.
In “The Maze” you joined forces with Britta Görtz, Cripper’s singer. Have you got good relationship with them and with other local bands?
Since the metal scene in our home town isn’t that large the bands are constantly in touch with each other. Over the years some musical and personal ties with Cripper and Britta grew and so she offered her support. Britta was a huge help in recording and releasing this album. She not only was kind enough to sing on “The Maze”. She also helped Oskar, our singer, to record the vocals. She believed in our music and was always there so support our cause. Thank you, Britta! Now she’s raising hell with her new band Critical Mess and they’re doing an impressive job. A huge help in our early days were our friends in Aeonyzhar. Carsten and Chris helped us record and producing our first EP in 2015. They somehow guided us during our first steps in the more serious recording business. And of course there are the numerous bands we’ve had lots of great shows with. Looking back at our few years of history we can feel really happy.
Have you got an advice to every emergent band?
Make music. Everyone sucks in the beginning. But get out of your comfort zone, have fun playing your instrument and enjoy yourself. Take your time getting better, nobody’s rushing you. Chances are high you won’t make a living with it anyway 😉
Actually, is your future planned? Do you want to stay focused on the promotion of “Red ~ Phantom Delusive” or are you already working on the following album?
Our plans for the future are simple: promoting and playing live, writing new songs, having a good time. Coming back to southern Europe sometime soon and maybe recording another album within three years’ time or so 😉