We are called Desert Near The End and we are a metal band from Athens, Greece. We have released two albums so far “A Crimson Dawn” in 2011 and “Hunt For The Sun” in 2014.
2.So far under this name you have released 2 albums, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on both of the recordings and also how do they differ from each other?
Both albums share the same heart and are on the same path. If you must put a label on our sound then I guess you can tell it’s a kind of modern power/thrash. Because both albums are part of the same concept the music is story-driven so the differences between them are those of two chapters of the same book. Where “A Crimson Dawn” is mostly mid- tempo with a more monolithic approach and a more(at least to our ears) desolate sound as a man lost in a desert, “Hunt for the sun” has richer orchestration and it’s a lot faster and more aggressive like a man determined and driven who hunts it’s prey and all these will escalate in our third album which going to bring the story to it’s conclusion.
3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
As I already said both albums share the same story and everything moves around two ideas: that something is never lost as long it is not forgotten and may rise again someday and that the absolute light is not guiding, just blinding. Absolutes are not for men, you can hunt for them but you must never catch them. But that’s only the ideas behind the concept the story itself follows the story of a man who wakes by the sea in a world without sun and with no memory of who he is or what brought him there. So we follow him on his quest for his true self and destiny as he search for the sun renouncing the burning star in the sky as not his own and hunts for the sun the real one, the one who guides and not only blinds. We follow him on his quest from the shores of the sea to the deepest desert where time stand still and the flaming star never sets and from there through a passage of time to the heart of the sun where in flames as a burning star himself he is lost from the world but his trail remains in the sky as a promise for every man. There is where “Hunt for the sun” ends with a promise of return which we hope will be fulfilled in our next album.
4.The band was originally known as "Stormbringer" then "Eventide" but changed the names, what was the decision behind the name changes and also the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Desert near the end'?
Yes we used these names in the past and we stack with the name Eventide for quite some time. At some point we realized that there were at least two other bands with the same name one from Sweden and another one from USA. So we decide to change our name into something more personal, something that has a meaning only to us and was born from our music and our lyrics. So Desert near the end was the name and we’re following the path across the desert since. As for what our name stands for its simple: hope. It describes a situation familiar I think to every man when everything seems lost, nothing ever changes and the time seems to stand still, in a desert like this you have nothing but hope, hope to continue, hope to survive, hope that everything will change. Is like pandora’s box the thing that matters the most comes last. So hope it is.
5.What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?
Because we were a studio band for many years every show is important but if we must name a few then our show with Primordial in Athens was a dream come true because is one of our favorite bands. And also an incredible experience was our first tour in Russia because it was the first time we played abroad and it seemed that every show was better than the last. As for our performance we try always to give our best because metal is meant to be played live and the songs always take new life on stage and we try to do them justice.
6.Do you have any touring or show plans for the new album?
At this moment we are waiting for the world wide release of “Hunt for the sun” on February to announce some gigs in Greece and we are trying hard to organize something abroad but we don’t have anything solid to announce at this point.
7.Even with the different names the band has been going on since 1997 a year when a lot of bands where no longer playing this style of metal, do you feel that this genre has been making a huge comeback over the years?
I’m not sure , we’ve seen many revivals and comebacks during the years of thrash, old school death, epic, etc… with all these retro bands, but the era you referring to and I mean the mid-90’ was marked from milestone albums like “Burnt offerings”, “Imaginations from the other side”, “Sanctified” and others which are not present today in any form of retro-comeback. And I personally prefer it that way because I don’t really like any retro bands. The beauty of these albums was exactly that they didn’t fit in any genre exclusively, they stood in many worlds and didn’t serve under one banner that’s why they can’t produce any retro movement. Retro bands are like time capsules, they copy everything music, clothing, sound everything except personality. It’s good to have roots but it’s also important to have branches and leaves, if you have only roots you’re not a tree you are a potato. So I don’t see a comeback because the spirit of those albums was always here in every good metal album with no genre boundaries, and I can in the same way I once heard “Burnt offerings” to hear “Veto” from Heaven Shall Burn or “Desideradum” from Anaal Nathrakh and so many others, pure metal, aggressive-heavy-epic.
8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of the heavy, power and thrash metal genres?
So far we have very good feedback but it’s on a mostly local scale because our first album was self financed so it didn’t have any worldwide distribution and one could find it only through us or downloaded from the internet. Now with our second album and with the help from Metal Scarp Records we hope this would change .And the reaction to our first video clip for the song “Storm on my side” from “Hunt for the sun” was very positive.
9.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
As I’ve already mentioned the next album will be the conclusion to the story we started to unfold with “A crimson dawn” and pushed forward with “Hunt for the sun” and it’s already completed but I don’t want to say anything about it yet except that it’s going to be a lot faster, heavier and more extreme than it’s predececcors.
10.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
Our basic influences are those we grew up listening to and will always define the way we perceive metal. So bands like Iced Earth, Blind Guardian, Rotting Christ are our roots and all the great old ones who are behind everything. As for what nowadays I can give you a personal top 5 list of 2014: Anaal Nathrakh – Desideradum , Machine head – Bloodstone & diamonds, Primordial – Where greater men have fallen, Behemoth – The Satanist, Misery index – The killing gods.
11.What are some of your non musical interests?
I can answer only for me here, so I love books I constantly have one close to me and I read every day even for a while. I like a good story wherever I can find it : books, movies, tv series, and of course music which I hear it as a listener and not a musician , I hate musicians opinion about music most of the time
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Thank you for the nice interview and I want to thank everyone who will spend moments and thoughts over our music and always...follow the Path across the Desert...whatever this desert might be.