Exclusive Interview: Entheogen talk “Other World”!

The spark of Entheogen began life during some chemistry-laden jam sessions between friends Laurens De Cock (guitar and vocals), Keyvan Valamanesh (guitar and hair) and Anton Hellemans (bass) gave them ideas to peruse in 2017. They took their time to craft their sound before they found drummer and percussionist Chey Mahieuin in 2019 and that gave rise to the release of their debut record “Other World“, a Progressive Death Metal magnum opus which we were thrilled to be able to chat to them about…

We love “Other World” the vocals really caught us off guard at first like “what was that?!“. How have you found the reaction to the record so far?Lets divide our audience into 3 separate groups, people who know us like friends and family, people who don’t know us personally, and the critics; it was interesting to us that a all three groups agreed on the fact that it’s an interesting and catchy EP, there were comments about some parts that could have been different in their opinion but the general consensus was overall positive and at times surprised

Do you consider “Other World” to be something of a concept release?Let’s say musically there was not an exact concept in mind when these songs where been put together, but lyrically there is an overarching theme
How did you come to choose Matthijs Quaars (Spoil Engine, Exhuminate) to mix and master “Other World”? How did you find working with him?We won a local rockrally and the prize was a recording session with Mathijs, we already had our guitar lines recorded by then and only drums were left to be recorded, so the timing was perfect, we were happy with the recording, and we decided to hire him to mix and master our EP. Also there was a very good connection and communication between us, lots of good vibes, so we definitely are going to continue working with Mathijs for our next releases

When it came to writing the record, particularly with those almost Black Metal vocals, did you find yourselves needing to beef up the guitar sound to give the record more of a rounded sound? Do you work with a particular set of gear or move around and experiment with different sounds? If you could pick up a gear endorsement from a manufacturer, who would you really like to work with?About rounding up our guitar sound to keep up with the (black metal) vocals, I must say, it was quite the contrary. We started with some beefy, multi-layered guitar track. So, to have the vocals keep up, those were also multi-tracked. This was also used to have different-pitched growls layered on top of one another, creating a big sound. We took some time to find the gear we liked, but now it’s mostly fixed. All of the recordings for the guitars and basses were done with a Line 6 Helix. Live we also use a Helix for guitars, bass goes through an Ampeg stack. About endorsements, it probably depends who in the band you ask. Laurens really likes Strandberg guitars and his Helix, so he would happily be endorsed by them. Keyvan is really into Ormsby and would sign with them. Chevy would probably go with Tama or Pearl for drums. Anton would like to be endorsed by Kiezel and Darkglass

What was it like winning the Moshroom Rockrally (Moshroomfest Sint-Eloois Winkel) in 2019? Do you feel like the accolade has helped inspire the band and gain some new fans? It definitely inspired us, made us feel like we are on the right track. The crowd was mostly made up of loyal fans of each band present, but we did some valuable networking there

The synths of Jolijn De Cock add another dimension to “Of Remembrance”; do you see yourselves working with him again in the future? In terms of guest musicians, who else would you like to work with going forward? Jolijn is a good friend of Entheogen and an amazing pianist. She’s also frontman Laurens’ sister. We appreciate every possibility to work with her again. We haven’t really thought about including guest musicians in our next releases yet, it will depend on what extra parts we think we need for the music

Flying the flag for Belgium, we know about acts like Aborted, Nasty and Leng Tch’e; who would you recommend we check out from your homeland? “We recommend you check out Omnerod and Vermillion from the Belgian prog metal scene or The Fur who play psychedelic/stoner/space rock

What does the future hold for Entheogen? More releases, higher technicality, and ambition to get to the biggest stages worldwide

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