Interview with Amiensus

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The latest EP by Amiensus – All Paths Lead to Death – has shown a stripped-back band, ready to savagely burn anyone near them with their red-hot display of blistering black metal. WIth some quality songwriting skills and plenty of venomous attitude, this is 29 minutes you don’t want to miss.

So, sit back, take All Paths Lead to Death for a spin and have a read of the below…

Introduce us to Amiensus

Amiensus is 5 core members and our 2 studio singers. The band consists of Chris Piette, James Benson, Todd Farnham, Alec Rozsa and Zachary Morgenthaler. This is the live lineup that does the writing and playing. Aaron McKinney and Julia Holter join us in studio for some production. We are based out of Minnesota, but have members spread out across both Minnesota and Wisconsin in various cities. The group started in 2010, though a few of us have been playing music together for a little bit longer. However, most of this group has been consistent since at least 2013.

What are your influences?

We all have TONS of different influences. Metal and non metal. What keeps us all on the same page is a love for black metal. What we bring together is an understanding and love of musicianship, and appreciation for several types of music, whether it be bands, movie scores, classical pieces, or rock and roll.

Name five things you’ve listened to recently that you’d recommend

Warseid – A New Land to Find

Mac Demarco – This Old Dog

Antoine Dufour – Back and Forth

Falls of Rauros – Vigilance Perennial

Kendrick Lamar – DAMN

Tell us about All Paths Lead to Death

We wanted to write an album that was meant to be played live. It had to reflect us live too. So we made some changes for this EP that won’t necessarily reflect our music direction forever, but the goal was definitely to bring our intensity to recording.

Amiensus Band

This latest release of yours is darker and more aggressive than some of your other work – what led to this, and will this be a path you will walk more in the future?

Yeah, I would say you’d at least see this a little bit from now on. As I said before, we wanted to write songs that were meant to be played live. We had never thought about playing live until after we had finished Ascension, our second full length. This lead to us wanting to make some songs that reflected our intensity and strengths.

How were the songs written?

For the most part, basic song structures were written, the group processed it and then wrote their separate parts, and then it was rerecorded in a matter of about 2 weeks before our release. We really pushed ourselves for honest takes on this album.

What’s your favourite song on the album and why?

That’s pretty darn hard for me to say. I like them all for different reasons. The River is probably my favourite at this time, but it changes.

How did you choose the cover artwork?

Previously we used a John Martin painting for our split called “Gathering” with our friends Oak Pantheon (Go check them out!). This painting also really fit the lyrics and theme of the album!


How important is good album art to you?

Very important. We were delighted to bring together some artwork from our favourite guy, Manum Diaboli Art, and two great photographer friends, as well John Martin!

What continues to interest you about extreme metal, and black metal in particular?

The ever expanding influence of other music into black metal vs the black metal elitists vs antifa.

Playing live – essential or pointless?

Not essential. We didn’t do it for 5 years. We do it now because we enjoy it and because we wanted to bring a different dimension to our fans. I look at some of my favourite bands and they don’t tour constantly. I think that is ideal for us personally. Although we like being on the road quite a bit, we can’t do it constantly right now, and to some degree we think that constantly touring makes the shows less special. We want to bring the best show possible.

What are the next steps for Amiensus?

Strangely, touring Europe, and writing and recording our next full length album. We may be a little quiet towards the end of this year but its because we’re planning something huge next year!

Any final words?

Thanks to our fans over the years, we’ve grown from freshly out-of-school kids into young adults, and just sharing the evolution of our musical journey with everyone is more than we expected. We set out to do this for fun, and that is why we are still doing it. Everyone supporting us keeps us going though!

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