Chilean epic doom heroes Capilla Ardiente’s album ‘Bravery, Truth And The Endless Darkness’ is awesome, so we had a chat with main man Claudio Botarro…
DoomMetalHeaven: Hi Claudio, love the new album. How pleased with it are you?
Claudio: Hi! Thank you for your support! I am very pleased about the album, from the composing / rehearsal stage to the recording and release of it. It was a really satisfactory process overall.
What did you want it to sound like before you started recording? And does it sound exactly as you planned?
Well, to be honest, my first thoughts were what I don’t like the album to sounds like: Overproduced, plastic, mathematic… So we looked into old recordings, listening to certain guitar tones, specific types of snare / bass drums, etc. We had a lot of references that we took to the studio, but trying to keep our sound, our way of playing DOOM METAL. It does not sound exactly as we planned, it sounds way better!!
Having planned this album for many years, was it a very intense personal experience for you?
Yes, it has been. Music-wise, I think that I haven’t changed so much since the EP in terms of composing, but I have had a lot more time to try, fail, probe and, in the end, build songs that I’m 100% satisfied with. Lyric-wise, it reflects most of my growing process from the last six or seven years, and that’s a lot… I cannot see this album as random parts without connection. For me is a complete opus that took a lot of time to be ready.
Who are your musical heroes?
For me “heroes” have been the one’s I grew with when I was a teenager, and that made me say “OK, I’m into metal and I’m into Bass guitar”: Lemmy Kilmister, Cliff Burton and Jean Yves Theriault (Blacky) where the reason I play Bass and use distortion. Other big influences for me are Geezer Butler, Danny Lilker, Tom Angelripper, Leif Edling, Steve Harris, Steve DiGiorgio, Roger Patterson, Klaus Flouride, Jerry Only, Leo Smee, Mario Mutis, Jim Schumacher and a hundred more.
What are your main lyrical inspirations?
I think existence and self are the canvas on which the main concepts paint the history. The struggle to rise, gain wisdom, fight mediocrity, the loneliness of the search, the suffering process… All seen through the eyes of a character. A solitary one representing the individual… I don’t remember having written a lyric about “we” or “us”.
There is a clear Candlemass influence in your music – what special qualities do you think Leif Edling brought to the metal scene during that classic 1980’s period?
For me he brought a lot of things: First, the obvious Black Sabbath worship in times of “the faster, the better”. The Arabic-sounding melodies, which are their trademark and influence for a lot of bands, then and now (think Sorcerer, Memory Garden, Forsaken, and us, to name a few) and finally the EPIC way of playing slow music, with the drive-me-to-tears solo virtuoso-ism over plain heavy riffing. Yes. He is one of those bass players that can really come with some unique, fresh music.
If you decide to take Capilla Ardiente on the road, which bands would you like to play with?
Old ones: Candlemass, Pagan Altar, Angel Witch, Brocas Helm. Newers: Funeral Circle, Cauchemar, Metal Grave, Lord Vicar, In Solitude, Atlantean Kodex. Yep, that would look like a great time!
When you’re writing music, how do you know when you’ve got it right?
I think that when I’m listening to the music we recorded at the rehearsal room, bang my head and say “I want to listen to this again” we have something. I don’t make music I don’t like to listen to or I find boring.
What was (band-mate) Felipe like as a roadie for your previous band Poema Arcanus?
Yes, he was. He was around 19 years old when we first met and it has been a loooong friendship/brotherhood/camaraderie since then (he is 30 now).
Procession’s album (Felipe’s other band) was well received last year – will there be competition between you and Felipe to be successful?
Absolutely not. We are both part of each other’s musical vision and we are proud that we have 2 ways of expressing DOOM METAL instead of one. When you talk about true art, you need to put that negative part of ego aside.
Do you see signs of growth in the doom scene in Chile?
Not really. There wasn’t a DOOM scene when we started with Poema Arcanus, back in 1995, there was no DOOM scene when Procession released the “Burn” Demo in 2008 and now, when we are releasing the debut LP from Capilla Ardiente, there´s still no DOOM scene. So, no, no signs of growing here, maybe just a couple bands like Condenados, Marcha Funebre and Skull of Heretic (R.I.P.) but nothing else.
Who is the greatest Chilean metal band ever?
Pentagram, of course. Way ahead of their time if you ask me.
What next for Capilla Ardiente – some festivals maybe, and hopefully you will be able to record a follow-up album soon?
First thing after the release of our debut album would be a 12″ split EP with Polish doomsters Evangelist, where each band will tribute an old band. We will be playing Angel Witch’s ‘Waltz The Night’ in our own DOOM way. It is supposed to be released on August/September via Doomentia records. After that, we are supposed to have a gig here in Chile before the year ends and after that, we are planning an Eurotour son summer 2015, so be prepared!!!
Where’s the best place to buy your new album?
Directly from the label, High Roller Records (or you´ll have to wait until we will be on tour…)
Thank you for your interest and support!