Dark Entries is an independent Belgian music webzine with a focus on dark sounds. The webzine itself is completely in Dutch and can be found at www.darkentries.be. This blog was created with the intention to have an additional online place where our editors can post their English articles. We hope you like it!
The Greek band Opened Paradise released their third album 'Buried In Rain'
in 2016, full of disillusioned gothic rock and occult allusions. The CD is a
little pearl, in line with their previous CDs of the band. We asked
guitarist-composer Babis and singer-lyricist Periklis to give more explanation
on the background and motives of the band.
You play gothic rock in
Greece. Can you tell us more about the goth scene in Greece? How did it start?
Babis: First of all we would like to thank you for this interview and your
interest in our music. The gothic rock scene is very diverse and sometimes
bands that fall under the same category don't have much in common, musically or
lyrically, with each other. Of course we don't have a problem with the term
since our roots are deep in what the Fields or Garden of Delight did in the
past, but we are influenced by a much wider range of music and this is
something that will get clearer in our next albums if it isn't already. The
fans and clubs were always here since the 80s when the whole movement started, but
the bands involved in it are still very few. I don't know if we can talk about
a Greek gothic rock scene. I always believed that you need to have a good
number of bands with a distinct sound to do so.
How did the band Opened
Periklis: It was in the summer of 2003 when we planted the seed. Nothing
more than 5 guys trying to release their thoughts and feelings through music. I
don't think that any of us expected to be here today, active almost 14 years
after, still in search of sound, looking for new horizons.
I noticed you have got two
songs named ‘Opened Paradise’. The first one is your own composition on your
debut, the second one is a cover of the Garden of Delight-song. Is this where
the inspiration for the name Opened Paradise came from?
Periklis: You are right. It is a fact that our name came as an influence of
theGarden of Delight song. At
that time Elias and I where way into their music. The title was put on the
table by Elias during an afternoon discussion.
Your lyrics contain many references
to the occult, to Mayan mythology and others. Where does your interests in this
field stem from?
Periklis: That which is unknown, or to be more accurate less known, always
seemed to attract me. Small parts of truth with great significance are hidden
in myths and legends. Through myths you get to know hidden or forgotten
traditions of civilizations. There were cases in which religion, in an effort
to hide the actual truth, fed people with lies and forbid or burned books. We
crave for what is hidden and we are in search for what is lost. This was and
this is the turning wheel of our inspiration.
When going through the lyrics
of your last CD ‘Buried In rain’, I had an idea of an overarching theme: the
distance between what someone wants to make from its life, and the actual
reality. Is there a concept behind the CD and can you tell us more about it?
Periklis: ‘Leaving Dreamland’ has mainly got to do with that.What you
expect from life.What you were told to believe in and how finally you realise
that people and life itself seem to fail you.
In my mind "Buried in Rain" is hermetic. Speaking to all a different
language, but with the same goal. The search for truth. To acknowledge fear, to
embrace it and at the end letting it be your companion through life. Death is
there to let you know that things are ok as long as you're far from His grasp.
Since the very
beginning, you chose to sing in English. Why not choose for your native Greek?
Babis: We never thought about it to tell the truth. It came out naturally
probably because the bands we were influenced by at the time were using the English
language. I personally have great respect for some of the Greek rock bands that
did it differently and I really don't know how Opened Paradise would sound if Periklis
was singing in Greek. It might be intriguing and, who knows, it might sound
even more occult to some people.
After 13 years
of existence, you still play with the initial band. How could it last for so
Babis: I think that most of the times the reason for a musician to leave a
band is losing interest of what the team is doing at the time, commonly known as
"musical differences". Since we don't have to deal with tight
schedules and heavy touring, which can also be a problem within the ranks of a
band, I guess we still have the same passion as we did when we first started
out. We did have our issues though, which we tried to and finally managed to
overcome and we recently made the family bigger with the addition of Kiriakos
as second guitarist and 6th permanent member of the band.
We are all aware
of the current crisis in Greece. What are your thoughts about it?
Periklis: Well the "crisis" is here. If you live in Greece you
can see it all around you. The people have lost their will to smile nowadays. The
poor are getting poorer, the rich become richer and the middle class isslowly fading away. Surely we feel the impact
also in our lives but at least we still have a way out through music. Opened Paradise: bandcamp / facebook