Interviews > Saturnian Mist
Saturnian Mist
Interview by Athena Schaffer

A shimmering celestial body has appeared on the horizon. Finland’s Saturnian Mist has unleashed their debut release upon the masses: Gnostikoi Ha-Shaitan.

Hailing from Kuopio, Saturnian Mist are: Famulus Zetekh (lead & backing vocals), Somber Chaoswind (lead guitars), Shu-Ananda (rhythm & solo guitars, clean vocals), Ptahaz (bass guitar), and Wyrmfang (drums). On this album, they’re joined by guests A.M. (keys), Heidi Haikala (female vocals), and Hi Kivela (other instruments).

Check out their video for one of their earlier songs, “A Call In The House of Malign”.

Heavily influenced by Gnosticism, Saturnian Mist was formed to combine musical expression with Occultism in both theory and practice. This album is an apt testament to that as it indeed conjures Black Metal magick.

The Crowgrrl caught up with Zetekh by e-mail to find out more!

"Gnostikoi Ha-Shaitan" is an excellent album! Can you tell us more about the fiery enlightenment of the title track?

I rather do not interpret the lyrics per se on behalf of others. I can talk about concept & themes behind the songs, but it is always best to leave the final interpretation to the listener. This is because there is always more in the lyrics than what the artist intended to put there and it's about existentialism in art like it's in life - everyone sees it through their own eyes. In general, it is the last song of the album which should be one kind of axiom of the whole album and of the whole "journey" which listener has gone through from the first song to last. By theme, it is a miniature of the whole album and the album is about exploration of the different aspects and modes of archetypal Satan, which are found from every religion and culture by different name and different emphasis. It tells more of the human mind, but also very much about the world which surrounds the mind.

What were your influences behind “The Regicide”?

Musically speaking, I don't honestly remember as it was first song to be composed to the album which draws way back. Journalists seem to label it in category of Black and Thrash which maybe partially true, but I wouldn't buy it completely yet sometimes things influence subconsciously very strongly. During that time I was though involved in some Death metal bands, which may have left a mark too. I only remember the emotions which made the song. It serves as an opening to the album and as the very thing which started the spiritual and occult path under the banner of archetypal Satan. More or less, everyone into the Left-hand-path Occultism or Satanism found themselves from the path they chose after being angry, hateful or miserable towards the world view from where they left. Otherwise they wouldn't have started this path if they were satisfied. According to this, "The Regicide" is about the moment of realization what is wrong in the world, Self and God and what would be the solution in such hatred and energy to solve it. To kill a "king", but how?

I love “Consecration Of The Temple”! Can you tell us more about that song?

We used some tribal drumming & atmosphere there to underline the primordial nature of this archetypal Satan, and that it is not a 'personal horned figure' but instead, it is force in nature. Like I said, this album is about the different aspects of this archetypal Devil imagery, in symbolic, physic and theistic ways. Title of the song tells the rest, but to clarify: it tells what is truly needed to understand when 'Consecrating the Temple'. It's like when the vague views about the world begins to be outlined in coherent ideology. Alongside with 'Sacrifice Of Faces Unbroken' it seems that these two songs are the hardest to comprehend in this album. For this song, an explanation maybe derivative from the statement of our sound engineer guys, who said "it resembles of Kingston Wall in Black Metal format, and maybe puritans don't understand the point". It is though amusing, that these so called puritans were the ones who comprehend it, and those "with open mind" did not. Something to think about.

What about the inspirations behind “Temps-Des-Cranes”?

Main inspiration was the difference between the ancient Occultism & modern Occultism. As in ancient tradition, Occultism was studied under a physical guidance of Guru or a Master, but in modern way you teach yourself more or less. It is also some kind of tribute to the works of Michael Bertiaux & his book "The Gnostic Voudon Workbook" which was one of the keys to understand this difference.
"Rejection of the Great law shall be the law of laws
I take these steps in order I want...
...Rejection of the Great law shall be the law of laws
Dogmas shall not bind but we shall and we will".
- Temps-Des-Cranes

What’s your personal favorite song on the new album?

Impossible to say because the album is wholeness. Most challenging though was 'Sacrifice Of Faces Unbroken'. Lyrically, it was inspired by the Shakespearean plays and dialogues of Plato & Socrates. Musically, well, everyone can make their judgment. If only opera could meet black metal, but here we have people who have listened too much of King Diamond & Darkthrone.

This album was five years in the making?

Yes and no. First chords were composed in 2005 and the idea for the album came out during these days. The actual making process were though in 2008-2010 where the working was more or less 24/7 and there were no difference between the "bandlife" and "normal life", so as you can see it’s rather relative how long you think the album was in the making, because 2005-2008 were just some kind of "gestate the thought" and studying of occultism & philosophy in general which is too the major point of the album. Most of the compositions made during that time ended up to demo, Repellings EP and Split CD with Creatura but some of them were waiting to be arranged to the full length. With the albums like these, and the message like this, it was important to us to "practice what you preach". Saturnian Mist is a tool to work with our different levels of consciousness and to reflect the development in the path of the Soul.

Who does most of the songwriting for the band?

These kind of questions don't matter. Album is a wholeness. Band is a wholeness. Music, songs and the band itself is always more than the persons involved in it. Even from medieval times, and the Renaissance or so, musicians have said that their 'art is from God'. Unfortunately, nowadays it’s just "me me me"...

Do the lyrics come first? Does the music come first? What is the songwriting process like for you?

Idea comes first. Sometimes it can be music which supports the idea in the beginning, sometimes it is lyrics. It is hard to say anything coherent about songwriting process, because it seems that the works of art create themselves just using us puny humans as their vessels. Just learn to let go.

Any stories behind the cover art?

Stories which are unrelated to the raison d'etre of the works are not worth to tell but there is one thing which describes very well the energies which influenced to the painting. Artist painted & crafted it so intensively and so much into the concept of the album, that when it was ready, he messaged me "All right, the painting is now ready. Now I must go to mental hospital...". When he got back from there, we got the painting. He started doing this project while we were still working Repellings EP, but got hibernated because of the same reason.

Any video plans for any songs?

We made video for 'Aura Mystica'. It can be found at this point from the digipack CD. If something is not found from internet, it doesn't mean that it wouldn't exist...

Tour plans?

No tour plans, just single concerts at this moment. Maybe in future.

What is your live show like?

We try to combine the trancelike and shamanistic elements into the atmosphere of Black Mass rituals, with the purpose of underlining the loss of control and channeling of energies which are much more greater than us. We think that some things cannot be captured into a recording device, and one of these kinds of things is the energy in its pure form which is entangled around the Occultism & Mysticism. It must be witnessed and experienced when it happens. To repeat it through recordings is just as feeble as memories are. That is why we offer a whole new level of our works while playing live, and that is why we play live.

Which songs are you including in your set list?

It changes and it depends on the occasion. We have played live almost every song we have ever made.

Are you filming any shows for a possible future DVD?

Some camera groups have filmed our shows already couple of times. We will see if they come out in what format and when. At least our shows in Rotterdam, Netherlands (2009), Tampere, Finland (2011) & Jyväskylä, Finland (2011) has been filmed by a camera group + proper sound quality, yet I don't have any idea what is the situation with these when it comes to the editing & mixing.

What kinds of merch do you have available?

We've had some t-shirts and hooded sweatshirts available but they are sold out at the moment. Some embroidered logo patches seems to be available in our old record label's mail order. There will be at least t-shirts available again with new design hopefully in near future by our current record label Ahdistuksen Aihio Productions.

Are you already writing songs for a follow-up album?

Yes. There are many songs already composed, and some concepts already thought through. There will be another concept album, because we think that albums without concepts are just pop music with collection of songs independent of each other. But there will be another time and place to reveal precise information about these things.

Can you tell us more about your Gnostic viewpoints?

Gnosticism is just one movement & tradition we are inspired of. We are inspired about the archetypal world view & the Occultism in general and per se, since it seems to be the key to all understanding. We see that were it Gnosticism, Veda or Hermeticism, they all have the same fundamentals when it comes to their ontological & ethical standing points. All religions speak about the same things, all philosophies try to explain the same things. Occultism is this formless, energetic "level" here, which unites them all, but which is somewhat hidden in the inter-subjective planes of existence and of one's mind. And we unite the musical expression together with this level and let the experience speak its language. It is the language which is understood by everyone, no matter were they atheist or theists (which by the way is almost useless separation and just terminological difference considering of world views, since its functions are the same as realism versus romanticism. ). "Satan" exists even if you do not believe it. It doesn't care about your beliefs.

Is there anything that I didn’t ask that you want to tell our readers?

Yes. A lot, but I don't know where to start? The bottom line with Black Metal is to keep ideological (or any kind of profound message) and the musical quality in balance. Either one should not compensate other. Interviews will go more or less into a monology about our ideologies which is fine of course, but on the other hand, one should remember that musical expression is also very important. Musical expression and ideological message should discuss with each other, fulfilling each other, like lovers. All in all, thank you for an interview. Gloria in profundis.