Nile Interview: by SweetDark
1.What is the current line up of Nile and what respective instruments do they play?
Karl Sanders- Guitar Vocals , Dallas Toler Wade -Guitar Vocals , George Kollias -Drums and on Bass Vocals -Chris Lollis
2.How did the idea of creating a band solely inspired by ancient Egyptian history begin and did you have a clear understanding of what you were going to do once you got together?
At first we weren’t at all clear of what we wanted to do ; that sort of evolved over the first couple years . What was clear , though, right from the start was we were gonna be a Metal band, and fuck anyone who didn’t like it. The name Nile really came from a friend of mine, who suggested, “You guys like playing that Middle-Eastern stuff, why don’t call you call yourselves “Nile” and it just seemed to fit. Figuring out what to do with the concept took awhile . J
3.What kind of musical influences does Nile have?
Lots of early metal , Zeppelin ,Sabbath , Priest , Early Rush , some guitaristic stuff like Dimeola , , Mahavishnu Orchestra, Robin Trower , Uli Roth, some other stuff like Ravi Shankar, Nusrat Ali Khan , Peter Gabriel Early Death Metal like Immolation, the first two Morbid Angel records ,Gorefest and so on. George listens to lots of jazz drumming and works hard to bring some of that into Nile.
4.Who do you like being on tour with Ozzfest and what band are we most likely to catch you watching?
Well Ozzy Is like the Godfather of Metal , isn’t he ? I like Zakke’s guitar playing so I’ll probably watch a bit of that. And Behemoth are old touring friends of ours . They have opened for us so many times I have lost count.
5.You guys have done several tours, which one out of these tours have been the best one for you and why?
Well we have been touring steady since 98; done more tours than I can actually remember - but probably the most meaningful were the 3 times we toured with Morbid Angel .They were very inspiring and encouraging, and we learned a lot from watching them day-in-day-out.. Not just on delivering a professional Death Metal performance ,
But on sheer road survival and how to scratch out a living from Death Metal Touring.
Which I suppose is a major feat right there, Death Metal doesn’t make much money , if any.
6.I’ve heard you are coming out with another work of art for this year. What can we expect with this new project and do you have a title for the new album?
Its Called “Ithyphallic” , it comes out in July - It is 10 tracks of unrelenting Brutal Death Metal with exotic middle eastern influences .
7.Nile is one of the few bands that have the ability to produce greater records with each release. How do you think the material that you have for this new album differs from your last material?
I think the new songs are more focused. We have managed to keep the lineup solid ,
Which is a real positive thing.
George and Dallas and I have had a couple years of touring together since the last record , “Annihilation of the Wicked” to grow as a band and improve. We are of very similar minds in that each of us is constantly striving to push farther ahead with our instruments and songwriting ,and working together as a team. I think that gives the material a real solid and aggressive foundation - and it really has allowed us to write our best album ever. There is stuff on this new disc “Ithyphallic” , that is harder and faster than anything we have ever attempted, but also a lot of new approaches to things that make it feel fresh to us. “Ithyphallic” is also the cleanest , tightest record we have ever done.. That cleanness and care of recording really helps to translate the ferocity of what we are actually playing , so that people can hear it.
There is nothing more frustrating than slaving for weeks/months on end , playing something amazing, and then the production not living up ; and the result is that people don’t hear it the way its intended , and then they don‘t “get it”. But this record, I can fucking hear every single goddamn note we are playing . To me It is the difference between ~just having a record that sounds heavy~ and having a heavy record where the content translates musically to the listener ; so that the listener grasps what the fuck we are actually doing.
8.Do you have any other project or collaborations in the works that you might like to tell us about?
I have a quiet exotic/ambient project called “Saurian Mediation “; George’s band in Athens Greece “Sickening Horror” just released their record, and Dallas and Chris did a record with Lecherous Nocturne.
9.You have been signed to a new label company, will there be any change in the band or would you evolve differently now that you are with Nuclear Blast?
Well, Nuclear Blast are behind us 110% . We wouldn’t be on Ozzfest in the first place if they hadn’t been willing to put up the money , as well as tour support so that we can offset some of the costs of actually touring without getting paid. .Nuclear Blast also gave us enough of a budget to record the new album properly - to do things right - and that right there speaks volumes about the truth of their commitment to and belief in the band.
They have also been real supportive of our ideas, and have allowed us free artistic reign in areas where we were censored in the past.
10.What kind of environment are you in when writing music and lyrics?
Usually at home, late at night, when its quiet and I can think clearly.
I have lots of Egyptian artifacts and stuff around my apartment , so its easy to catch the vibe and put myself in the mindset of writing Nile songs.
11.What music do you listen to on your free time? Give us your recent play list.
Peter Gabriel - “Passion” Last Temptation of Christ soundtrack
Immolation - Harnessing Ruin
Black Sabbath - Paranoid album
Black Sabbath - Dehumanizer
Robin Trower - Bridge of Sighs
Uli Roth - Metamorphasis
12.What reading material would you recommend to those interested in ancient Egyptian history?
The Book of the Dead is a good place to start. Or anything by E.Wallis Budge.
13.Which do you think would be the impact you’ll leave to metalheads in this years Ozzfest?
Who knows ? We realize we are a heavier band than what many mainstream Metal listeners are used to. Quite assuredly many of them will neither understand or appreciate what we have to offer. But there will also be quite a few Metalheads - who hear us and come to realize there is a whole world of Metal that goes way beyond anything they ever heard before. The fist time I heard Slayer’s Hell Awaits , it was the heaviest music I had ever been exposed to. It opened up a whole other world of Metal I never knew existed.
Board Member Questions:
14.Are there any contemporary bands like Lykathea Aflame you would feel are doing a good job in progressing the standard style of Death Metal? (schweger)
Well, Lykathea Alame are quite an obscure reference , I met them once on tour in Europe and they gave me their CD -
So I have heard them ; and appreciate what they are trying to do. Another fine example would be Necrophagist . They make incredible records containing exquisite crème-de-la-crème Metal guitar playing.
15.What advice would you give to a band in a small town who is trying to get noticed? (vampiremcmuffin)
I would say, play as many shows as you can, and get your CD into the hands of as many people as you possibly can. It matters. And please don’t suck.
16.If you could tour with any band who would it be? (Something_Wicked)
Uh….. If it is a wish list we are talking about here , Heaven and Hell !!!
17.Have you actually played any shows in Egypt? (Mustakrakissh)
Nope. Never had a single offer to play in Egypt.
18.We all know that Karl and Dalas write songs about Egypt. Dear Karl and Dalas, have you ever got an idea to write lyrics about other ancient civilizations… Maybe Atlantis, Maya, Sumerian civilization. All this civilizations have some resemblance (both in music and culture). Why you pay attention only to Egypt, isn’t it the time to try something else? Also oriental and mystical. Or you’ll continue “exploring” Egypt? (Gorlindar)
I don’t know if it is possible for any one band to be all things to all people.
Just taking on the Ancient Egypt topic is / was a monumental undertaking -
At least to try at least to do it justice.
Taking on multiple ancient civilizations might be biting off more than one band could chew.
19.Will there be any guest musicians featured in the new album? (wimm83)
Chris Lollis, our touring bassist , contributed some additional vocals , and producer Neil Kernon did a few keyboard bits. Other than that , No.
20. This year the Freefest as it is being billed, has an entirely new concept in marketing the bands to the masses. How do you feel about this new concept and what are your expectations of such an innovating style of touring?
I expect to lose massive amounts of money. Hahahahahaha
I guess, really, we will all just have to wait and see how it works out.
In the past I saw people griping about ticket prices and so forth - and now that its free, there are still people finding stuff to gripe about.
Afterwards, There are some who will say that “all festivals should be free”
And some that will then make the argument that “Ozzfest is devaluating Live music”
But I say , who knows ?
We were gonna have to tour this summer anyway , to support the new record ,
So I suppose touring as part of Ozzfest is as fine a way to promote the new Nile record as any.
21.Do you see the cultures melding together musically via your art as a healing thing in the tense world we live in as it pertains to cultural relations?
Well hopefully. I have always said that Metal is a unifying force, something that all people can find a common bond thru ( or any music for that matter )
But I think Metal has an especially powerful , galvanizing force .
Everyone understands a power chord , or a kickass drumbeat or screaming vocal.
And I believe the Goat Horns have become a Sign of International Metal Solidarity.
No matter where you go to a Metal show, no matter what country or language they speak , Metal Fans understand head banging , moshing , and the Horns.
22.Where do you see NILE going after the Ozzfest tour has completed its rounds?
Home for a few weeks rest, and then off for a headlining European tour.
23.Who will Nile be seen working with in the future as far as producers and opening touring acts?
Its too early in the tour cycle of this album to tell yet.
We are very happy with Neil Kernon, he did an amazing job on Ithyphallic. As far as opening acts, well it all depends on who is available, really.
24.Tell us about something that has never before been discussed in a NILE interview,...don't be shy.(we are not easily shocked)
Hmmmmm ….. Never before discussed ? That would be tough, I have done 1000’s of interviews over the years , and been asked all sorts of inappropriate things…….
25.To each member,..please discuss in detail the type of electronic set-up you use to play live,..and what tunings do you all use on your instruments?
Here is a link to he Nile forum FAQ for anyone interested in my gear http://www.nilechat.net/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=7707
26. From AC. I had never heard of you until you were announced for Ozzfest and at that point I decided much to my pleasure to listen to your music. Would this be one of your major reasons for doing a freefest? not necessarily just to get me :icon_biggrin: , but to draw people like me?
Of course. It is the complete Raison d’etre of a band like us doing Ozzfest.. That and slaughtering Hordes of uninitiated unwashed masses.
27. Again AC. Please describe (in 10 or less brutals or variations thereof) how you are different from other bands at the fest this year and why I should do anything to see your set?
Perhaps you shouldn’t. .But then you would miss finding out first hand what Nile is all about. There are plenty of other bands on the bill as well , all with their own fine qualities - go see them all .
Nile,.Thanks for taking this time with us to answer all these scathing questions...See you at the FREEFEST!!!
Keepin it Metal,
Nile myspace: http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=16993157
Nile website: http://www.nile-catacombs.net/NILE The Band
Photos courtesy of: S_Kinkade
Karl Sanders- Guitar__ Vocals
Dallas Toler Wade -Guitar__Vocals
George Kollias -Drums
Photo not available:
Chris Lollis-Bass__ Vocals
Some Badass Cover art from their CD's: Amongst the Catacombs of Nephren__1998
1. Smashing The Antiu
2. Barra Edinazzu
3. Kudurru Maqlu
4. Serpent Headed Mask
5. Ramses Bringer Of War
6. Stones Of Sorrow
7. Die Rache Krieg Lied Der Assyriche
8. The Howling Of the Jinn
9. Pestilence And Iniquity
10. Opening Of The Mouth
11. Beneath Eternal Oceans Of SandIn the Beginning__2000---Previously released as Festivals Of Atonement 1995 & Ramses Bringer Of War-1997
Festivals Of Atonement-1995/Anubis Records
1. Divine Intent
2. The Black Hand of Set
4. Immortality Through Art/Godless
Ramses Bringer Of War-1997/Visceral Productions
1. The Howling Of The Jinn
2. Ramses Bringer Of War
3. Die Rache Krieg Lied Der AssyricheBlack Seeds of Vengeance__2000
1. Invocation Of The Gate Of
2. Black Seeds Of Vengeance
3. Defiling The Gates Of Ishtar
4. The Black Flame
5. Libation Unto The Shades Who Lurk
In The Shadows Of The Temple Of
6. Masturbating The War God
7. Multitude Of Foes
8. Chapter For Transforming
Into A Snake
9. Nas Akhu Khan She En Asbiu
10. To Dream Of Ur
11. The Nameless City Of The Accursed
12. Khetti Satha ShemsuIn Their Darkened Shrines__2002
1. Blessed Dead
2. Execration Text
4. Kheftiu Asar Butchiu
5. Unas Slayer of the Gods
6. Churning the Maelstrom
7. I Whisper in the Ear of the Dead
8. Wind of Horus
9. In Their Darkened Shrines:
I. Hall of Saurian Entombment
10. In Their Darkened Shrines:
II. Invocation to Seditious Heresy
11. In Their Darkened Shrines:
III. Destruction of the Temple of
the Enemies of Ra
12. In Their Darkened Shrines:
IV. RuinsAnnihilation of the Wicked__2005
1. Dusk Falls Upon the Temple Of
The Serpent On The Mount of Sunrise
2. Cast Down The Heretic
3. Sacrifice Unto Sebek
5. The Burning Pits Of The Duat
6. Chapter Of Obeisance Before Giving
Breath To The Inert One In The
Presence Of The Crescent
7. Lashed To The Slave Stick
8. Spawn Of Uamenti
9. Annihilation Of The Wicked
10. Von Unaussprechlichen Kulten