Interviews About Albums: Veriteras - The Dark Horizon (2024)

In this new interview, we sat down with the American Melodic Death Metal band Veriteras to ask questions about their album "The Dark Horizon"

1. What can you say about this new CD?

Santtu: We're super excited to release the album! The Dark Horizon really leans in on our old-school melodic death metal roots (think early-era In Flames, Dark Tranquillity, Kalmah, to name a few), and as a result has a more blackened melodic death metal sound compared to our previous release, Shadow of Death. There's more tremolo picking, and more blast beats, but still holds on to a very melodic core.

This album is also a step forward in almost every regard for Veriteras. The songwriting is more mature, the lyrics are better because Sean wrote most of them instead of Santtu, the recording is fantastic, and the mix and master are spot on. With Shadow of Death, we were overjoyed to just record an album, whereas with this one we'd been through the process once before, and had more of a concept for what we wanted to do and what sort of a sound we were going for. It's just a better album in almost every regard, at least in our opinion! We’ll see what other people think!

Jason: Adding to Santtu's comments about songwriting, I think we've grown quite a bit simply in becoming more aware and responsive to what each other needs musically. As for me, I feel that I have a better awareness of what the guys need from a structural standpoint. For example, how I might make a transition easier to follow or when to keep a part locked in vs. when I can open up and experiment with different drum parts that may add some variety to a song. Though I'm sure this is probably a common experience with any band that grows together, it certainly is a factor in our case.

2. What is the meaning of the CD name?

Santtu: The Dark Horizon is a line from the song Manufactured Dreams, which is one of my favorite songs on the album. As we were thinking about album names we literally went through all of our lyrics to see if there was something that jumped out at us. The Dark Horizon fit really well with the lyrical themes and overall concept that Sean was writing around.

Sean: The artwork also reflects that concept. The inspiration there was from the lyrics of "Celestial Darkness," which explores hope and despair when thinking about the cosmos and our place in it. I envisioned and started with a sketch of a mysterious nebula that gives life to new creations on other worlds. To me, it evokes the wonder of what other consciousness exists in the universe, and whether they look to the skies and ask themselves the same profound questions about the nature of existence. In many ways, this is a general theme across the album and the other lyrics.

3. Which one is the composer of the CD?

Santtu: It’s a team effort for sure! I wrote and arranged most of the music, and Sean wrote most of the lyrics. A few exceptions include Retrograde, which is almost entirely by Sean. The song Blinding is a cool blend of Sean and I for both the music and lyrics - I wrote the beginning and end, Sean wrote the middle part. Jason plays a key role in the song-writing process too, refining the drums and fills from the original demos as we’re rehearsing to record. Bass on this album was written and recorded by Matthew Kirkwold (Majesties, Inexorum, Antiverse, Obsequiae), and he came up with absolutely fantastic bass parts! We also had several guest soloists from musicians we have a ton of respect for - Adonis Reed-Boulos (Inpathos, Bellingham WA melodic death), Eligio Tapia (Crepuscle, Bay Area melodic death), and Major Bruno (who’s now our bassist!). Lastly Maria Mannisto provided clean vocals on the last song of the album, giving the final track a Nightwish type sound. In summary - it was a collaborative effort, and we think the album is better for it!

4. If you had to pick one song, which one would you pick?

Santtu: Celestial Darkness - it’s kind of our thesis for the album. Blackened melodic death with a touch of folk. I’m pretty sure that Jason would pick Certainty, the album opener. Really hits hard and gets the album going.

5. Is there a special message in this CD? If there is what it is?

Sean: The primary lyrical theme on this album is the tension between hope and hopelessness as felt through the human experience: war, politics, creation, destruction, faith, and doubt. The lyrics are reflections on these contrasts, zooming in on personal conflict, and zooming out on civilizational conflict. The backdrop for all of this is the vastness of the universe and how it evokes a sense of existential dread or crisis; in the midst of finding meaning in our struggles, there's an incomprehensible and unknowable nature of existence beyond the horizon.

6. Are there some lyrics that you'd love to share?

Santtu: One of my favorites comes from Manufactured Dreams, which is where the album name originates: “Between the dark horizon / And endless depths / A growing hope / Once weak and bleeding / Now never ceding / Between the versions of you / Through self-destruction / End this dysfunction / And this impending doom / Once ever-present / Now failing to torment”.

I must say though that Sean is a fantastic lyricist - he put a lot of time into crafting these lyrics and they turned out really well! Read them as you listen to the album!

7. Which inspirations have been important for this album? Like musically or friends, family, someone you'd love to thank especially?

Santtu: Early-era In Flames is probably the biggest one. The song Stand Ablaze is one the best melodic death songs (in Sean's and Santtu's opinion, at least), and by today's genre classifications, it'd be considered blackened melodic death or maybe even melodic black metal. Other influences are Dawn, Dark Tranquillity, and Kalmah. There's some Nightwish influence in there too, along with Children of Bodom.

8. Something to add?

Santtu: Thanks so much for sharing the news about our album! Keep an eye out for our singles coming out, first one 3/14 as a lyric video. Folks can pre-order the album here -

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