The Bloodstock Interviews - Blaakyum Print E-mail
Written by Linzi A   
Sunday, 03 September 2017 03:30

Blaakyum was one of the first Lebanese metal bands to have their music played on their country’s national radio.


Blaakyum Montage


After a gap of ten years, these thrash heavy titans from Beirut recently returned to the UK to play the Hobgoblin New Blood stage at Bloodstock, and they took some time out of their busy schedule to sit and have a chat with us about what they’ve been getting up to since they were last in this part of the Überverse...


It’s incredible really, we have never been to this festival before… we had heard a lot about Bloodstock, [and] we really wanted to come here and play. It’s like one big metal brotherhood. The atmosphere here is very friendly and we are very excited to be here.


So tell us a little bit about the band, starting with the meaning behind the name... Most people might think you’re a black metal band, but you’re not, are you?


Well, this is something we don’t usually disclose, but the actual meaning… all we can say is in a way black is a colour and ‘yum’ is a chemical charge for the metals, like uranium. Many people do think we are black metal, but where we are based black metal didn’t really exist or wasn’t known to us [when we were starting out]. The name of the band it’s just the colour black and metalizing the shade and making it a name.


Many people also ask us why we write it the way we do… that’s because it simply looks better: it’s eye catching, you know!


You’ve got a couple of albums under your belt, haven’t you?


Yes, we have actually got two albums out already: one we released in 2012, and ‘Line of Fear’ we released in June 2016, which we supported with a European tour. We toured with Onslaught throughout Europe; we also played in Finland, we played Wacken after coming third in the Metal Battle for a place.


We [actually] released a [couple of] single, in 1997 and 1999, as we are a ‘90s band, but our actual first debut album ‘Lord of the Night’ was released in 2012… We are about to go into the studio to do our third album.


Tell us more about this: what can we expect?


It’s going to be less shit (laughs)! I’m joking!


Blaakyum photo


We are trying to put a lot of new elements into our music. How the music progressed from the first album to the second album, a lot of people thought it was more groove thrash with some oriental parts thrown in. With the third album we are going to go a little heavier.


We want the new album to be different, because what we want to avoid is [being] like most bands that come from the Middle East, who incorporate a lot of the Middle Eastern sounds: even though we love that sound, we want to pull ourselves away from that cliché, if you know what I mean. We want to avoid sounding exotic in what we do, and remain heavy and true to what we do.


We love those typical crushing riffs, but of course you can’t do that because it’s been way over done; and, at the same time, you don’t want to go to the other extreme and become extremely eccentric and exotic with what you do. So, it’s hard for us, as we are trying to produce our own sound and style, and not sound like every other band from the Middle East.


So, with the new album we are trying to push ourselves one step further, including maybe throwing some black metal elements in there to mix things up a bit.


What’s next for the band?


Well, we have just played London, [so] we’re hoping to organise a tour in the UK before we go to record the album - but I don’t know yet if it will work out like that.


We have invited Onslaught over to play in Lebanon… it’s going to be interesting; they are going to be playing with a couple of Lebanese bands, including us. We are recording in January in Italy, so we may organise some shows around Europe at that time. [But], we are just focusing on the next album.


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