Bes Webzine

1. Greetings to Ukraine! What news are in the camp of the Khors from release the album Return To Abandoned? I noticed that you recently released DVD Winter Stronghold. What is the current activity of the band?

Hi there! After “Return To Abandoned” is released we played some shows presenting this album just as we do it usually. This year we’ve got line-up changed and our original guitar player Helg is back so we’re feel glad about that cause Helg’s also the main composer for KHORS, not only just guitarist and vocalist. Talking about “Winter Stronghold” it was filmed during Kolovorot festival in 2009 and released only not so far. It’s bootleg DVD kinda “for fans only”. We’re still active after a couple of months of so called respite as we sometimes do and now we’re into composing of new tracks and preparing to play some shows as well.

2. Yes, I noticed that, when Helg was outside of band. What was his reason to leave a band and his quickly return back to band?

There was time Helg had no possibility to play as much as it was needed. He couldn’t play live shows, couldn’t attend rehearsals due to his extreme being busy with his family. He became father second time in May but as a year passed since he left us we realized that we can’t write music in the way of KHORS and we felt something like stupor. We invited Helg back just to write music further but as more we did this way the more we saw that Helg should be in basic line-up and Helg did realize the same. So as our guitarist Warth exposed us and left the band Helg then played a show with us already a week later. This line-up we have now I think much more powerful and we’re glad our old friend Helg’s found enough time to be in a band with us again.

3. I´m interested, why band is named by slavic deity "Khors". Have you got some deep relation to this deity or it was spontaneous?

The name of Khors, the God known long before he’s appeared in Old Slavonic pantheon. Ancient Aryans worshipped Khorset, the God of the Sun had this word meant “shining”, “brilliance”, “glory”, “grandeur”, “special well-formedness by Gods”. All this had sacral meaning for the ancient ones. White light – the universe had such a name. The days of Khors God concur with Summer and Winter Solstice – the important festival for ancient pagans. Modern Russian language remained radical of Khors name in such words as “good”, “became better”, “round dance” and Ukrainian town Korsun’ Shevchenkovsky also has radical Khors in its name. So there are no spontaneous things but you will find no any special legends in our band name’s choosing).

4. The last album got quite nice assessments from various zines. Are you satisfied with the response of the audience or would you change something on the album, if you had the opportunity?

Nice assessments it’s always pleasant for sure so it would be silly if I’d answer I’m not satisfied with that. But to tell you the truth we didn’t expected such good reviews after melodic and romantic “Mysticism” as we thought people want some deeper and atmospheric stuff from us just like a prolongation of the line we started on “Mysticism” but we recorded much brutal album instead of to do that and got great response as a result. It’s pleasant twice. I don’t know if I’d like to change something on this album if I had opportunity. I think we’ll better record another one.

5. „Return..." was issued by overseas label Paragon Records. How did you get to cooperate with this label and Are you satisfied with their work ?

Before “Return To Abandoned” we have got our previous album “Mysticism” also released by these Americans. We’re searching for a label after recorded “Mysticism” and we’ve got some proposals amongst which the proposal from Paragon Records was the best one. Since our first agreement Paragon Records released two our last albums and re-issued two first one as Double CD with some bonuses. We’ve got wide distribution and great support from the label so sure we’re satisfied with our co-operation with them. We don’t know if Paragon will release our next albums due to a critical situation with CD sales in recent years but all they have done for us we appreciate and respect.

6. Is the "Return..." conceptual work or each song tells its own story? What is the main idea of the work, also interests me a lyric site of music – who writes lyrics? What are they about and what would you like to express with them? 

“Return…” is conceptual work but each song tells it’s own story)) You know, I can’t answer your question definite cause all the songs we do are about mystical ancient world, ancient beliefs, breathe by ancient mythologies, sacramental woods, strongholds of Nature. The concept is one but this is beyond of one story. There are Helg and Khorus who write all the lyrics. We just express the mystical and dark side of our ancient world both through the music and lyrics. 

7. What are you interesting on ancient mystical world? Why you choose create about him music?

It’s just interesting things for us. What can I say more?

8. Let´s still remain with lyrics. I wonder why you used in two songs names of places from different mythologies? I´m referring to songs Asgard´s Shining and Sacrament of Buyan.

Ancient belief it’s not the one certain mythology only so we may use any of them. And Nordic and Slavonic mythologies are of ancient belief and that’s why I can’t say “Return To Abandoned” is conceptual album cause it’s based not only on one mythology but it’s still conceptual cause about ancient mysteries and belief in a whole.

9. Your music over time is increasingly adopting a progressive elements, it is the result of long-term development or you use these elements on purpose? However, you had titled yourself as "Dark Atmospheric Pagan Metal", by what you derive the genre? 

I don’t know how to answer your question right. One side we write the songs for it to sound just as we want it to but other side we don’t want our albums sound similar. After we record an album we think what we’d like to experiment with on a next one but I also don’t deny that we progress as musicians for the years and those so called progressive elements are the result of that I think. As about genre title so it’s right the result of our so called experiments. After our “Mysticism” album is out it was explicitly specified then as “not black metal” by many of musical issues and the very best definition of our music we considered as Atmospheric Dark Metal. I think we don’t offend black metallers anymore with our “black metal” as they was so dissatisfied. But to tell you the truth I don’t think the definition of musical style is so important. If the music you play is not just the collection of riffs you will not think much about careful definition. Just listen and feel it. 

10. Let´s talk now about your live performances. The official website have offered us quite a lot of concerts. Some of them are already done and others just will be. Tell us more about those concerts.

We love to play live but unfortunately we can’t play as many shows as we’d like to by some reasons. Now we’re going to play on big Pagan festival in Moscow, Russia then we’re going to visit Slovakia and Czech Rep. to play some shows there. So hope we’ll meet there.

11. Exactly, on Slovakia you will be playing on Perunica fest in october and if my information correct so you will play on two place. First place where you will be play is Prešov and secondary it´s Nitra. Are you played on the Slovakia even before ? How you feel now, before visiting Slovakia, Do you plane to look our natural or cultural relic and monuments ?

KHORS didn’t play in Slovakia before but I did with my death metal band back in 2007. I loved a much Tatras and cities I was in so I hope we’ll have enough time to look and natural and cultural relic and monuments.

12. If you look into the past which concert do you remember like the best one? Have you fulfil your dream to play with your favourite band? 

I can’t note the only one best show we played. There were great shows, good shows, not so good shows amongst ones we played and there are many factors by which you can consider the show’s good or not starting from your own feeling, through the venue type, equipment used there in, fans support, promoter’s adequacy but I think the best shows we played are the ones with good support. Having the great support you can close your eyes on many factors you think are not so good. I can’t say we’d like to play with the bands we love. Whereas the reality of Ukrainian shows playing with that kind of band as support one means you play on worse equipment, have no time for soundcheck, have no dressing room and so on. Doubtful pleasure))) We’d better just visit the shows of the bands we love with relax feelings. In fact we prefer to play together with the bands we are friends with. That case we can help one each other and we’re sure we’ll have great time.

13. Is Khors the only band of his members or as musicians you are also active in other projects? 

The very active band member is Helg. He has three projects he’s writing music for and plays guitar there in. I play in couple of bands just for my pleasure. One of them is not metal at all.

14. Have you ever thought about the possibility to express old pagan elements in your music with folk music instruments?

Sure we thought about that but we don’t hear it in our music. Our music concept is a bit in minor key and Ukrainian folk are in major key in general. We have to be in good balance in it and sometimes we try some minor key folk in our music as you can hear. We all consider insipid the mixture of evil death/black metal riffs, blastbeats and so on with jolly folk instruments and jolly folk riffs so there must be good balance. Personally for me the best balance between metal and folk is in our DRUDKH band. 

15. Now we skip a little bit into the future, I am interested if the band has some visions of the new material? Are you preparing some news? If so in what stage of preparing are you and when we can see these news? Alternatively how would you characterized new material?

Actually we prepared almost all the songs for the new album till now and we’re going to enter the studio in late September. I think this new stuff is kinda experimental. There will be atmosphere over the riffs, too many frames of mind, estrangement and some ambient. I’m sure the listeners will be a bit surprised with our new album and I think this album be like nothing we did before. 

16. Are you watching your home scene in Ukraine? Are you keeping as a band friendly relationships with other bands or have you got personal favourites?

Sure I know well the state of affairs on underground scene here in Ukraine but as about friendly relationships with other bands I can only note our good and old friends from NOKTURNAL MORTUM, DRUDKH and REUSMARKT. We know many guys from different bands and we’re friends with them but we have close friendly relationships for many years only with the bands I’ve mentioned before.

17. What about our Slovak scene? Do you know any Slovak metal bands? 

I know many Slovak bands and have first-hand knowledge of Slovak underground as I played in Slovakia with my death metal band some years ago. I can note ANCESTRAL VOLKHVES, the band we all know much better than the other ones from out there. 

18. How the band puts on the political themes in music, which are at east Slavic black metal bands quite common?

We have no politics not in our music, not in our lyrics. We have enough politics in our common life living here in Ukraine, believe me. But it’s another long story for additional interview I think.

19. Ukraine must be beautiful country. If you have to show me the most beautiful place in your homeland , which would it be? Alternatively, to which places on Ukraine are you proud or like to visit?

Depends on what’s interesting for you))) Most popular place for foreign tourist here is Pripyat’, Chernobyl and alienation zone there. Excursions cost a bit expensive btw. But if serious there are a lot of beautiful places here. Personally I love Carpathians, Crimea, Western Ukraine cities most of all.

20. The last question I directed a little more personal. Do you believe in old ancestors faith or you just sing about them? Are you participating on some feasts? Are you members of some pagan groups?

If you are about some kind of role plays, ostensible rituals, hippie games and drunken feast as ceremonies so I can definitely say we’re not into it and we’re not interested in any so called Pagan communities. We keep ideals of ancient belief in our hearts. To honour your blood, to keep your traditions and ancient sacraments, to love your motherland, to know your history, to bring up your children. And we don’t need any fests or communities for that. 

21. Thanks Khors for the interview and great music! The last lines are for you.

Thanks you Zoreslav for your questions, warm words and interest to Khors. Take care! Slava!

Question by Zoreslav
Translated by Azog

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