Interview: Linus Klausenitze (OBSCURA)

1. Hi… introduce yourself to Bassylum readers please?

Hi, my name is Linus Klausenitzer and I’m bassist of the progressive death metal bands OSBCURA and NONEUCLID. If I can find the time I also play on biker parties with the German metal cover band FALLACY.

2.When did you start to play bass and what addicted you to that instrument particularly? Bands,artists you admire?

When I was 15 years old I was watching IRON MAIDEN’s ‘Life After Death’ video and knew that I wanted to do what Steve Harris does. I also played trumpet in a big band at that time and realized that the bassist had a more likeable role than I had. So I asked my parents to buy me a bass guitar.
I still like to play almost every style in which the bass has the possibility to play something meaningful. Metal is what I dealed with all my life and what also makes me happy right now. But every kind of music can be fun, if the bass lines have a heavy and rhythmical groove.
Bassists which influenced me are Cliff Burton, Rocco Prestia, Wojciech Pilichowski, Frank Itt, Richard Bona, Steve Bailey and Steve DiGiorgio. Bands that I listen to intensively at the moment are Exivious, Riverside and the Devin Townsend Project.

3.You are currently on European tour with OBSCURA…How did you get to play with them and what is like to tour with those guys?

In the beginning of 2011 I got a call from Steffen Kummer (front man of OBSCURA) if I could help out for an European Tour with Hate Eternal and a North America tour with Children Of Bodom. That went pretty well and when it was clear that Jeroen Tesseling would leave the band I took my chance and joined the band as a permanent member.
Last year we toured like hell through three different continents and had not even one bad argument. I just love it.

4.Quite a musical education you got there,really impressive..can you tell me something about it?

My parents are also musicians, so they early gave me a possibility to get a musical impression on different instruments. I learned to play piano, trumpet, upright bass and also bass guitar already at a music based secondary school when I was a kid. After I finished that I improved my musical knowledge at the music college in Regensburg and in a study course in popmusic at the conservatory in Hamburg. At that time it was most important to me to learn various styles and to get experience with different musicians and artists.

5. Can you tell something about OBSCURA’s current release that was financed via crowdfunding?

As probably the first band in extreme metal, we funded our current record ‘Illegimitation’ with the concept of crowd sourced capital and it worked out fantastic. We reached our financial goal within a few days and in the end we could use almost five times the amount to realize this demo collection. The record includes ten never-before-heard tracks, including the band’s earliest recordings from 2003, unreleased songs from the Cosmogenesis sessions of 2006, and brand new cover songs with the newest line-up from 2011. I think in times of decreasing physical sales crowd funding is a great way to release music with crowd sourced capital on an independent but high profile level.

6.With Noneuclid you have lots of different projects behind you – mostly collaborations with orchestras. What’s the story behind all that?

Noneuclid is a metal band with members of Dark Fortress, Triptykon and Revamp that is musically characterized by polyphonic, tonal and rhythmical complexity. Half of the band lives in the Netherlands, so it’s impossible to rehearse every week and play gigs in a continuous way. Thus we concentrate on particular special events like collaborations with orchestras and other cultural institutions. If we meet, we usually have very intense sessions and rehearse all night long.
Our main songwriter Morean is a classical composer which makes the work with orchestras like the very renowned Dutch Metropole Orchestra so special. The music he writes and arranges contents the common essence of both styles. When metal meets classic the orchestra usually gets just the role of a extended and better sounding keyboard replacement. That’s what Metallica, Scorpions and other famous bands did, but both styles have a lot in common that’s worth to combine.
Currently we have tons of recordings that we want to get out to the people and develop ideas how to arrange that in the best way. Just check our Noneuclid Facebook page (www.facebook.com/Noneuclidband) regularly and you will get more information soon.

7.You are endorsed by Ibanez and d’Addario…What makes you like those products best? What basses do you own,amps,effects?

At the moment my main bass is a custom made fretless version of the Ibanez BTB 676. I played all gigs and records for Obscura with it so far. It has a clear and powerful tone and fits to my ideal of a good bass sound. Other basses in my collection are an Ibanez ATK and an Ibanez Ashula, which has four fretted strings and two fretless ones. On stage I use a chorus, a volume booster and and an octaver for certain passages. D’Addario strings have the brilliant and steely sound that I like.

8.Where do you find your inspiration?

I try to find as many new sound influences as I can get. A lot of metal bands have problems to find their own identity and sound boring because they’re afraid to dare something different and copy elements of their few favorite bands. But there are still many possibilities to create something new. Specially in metal good bassists can make a change. Often bass lines are only simplified and octaved copies of guitar riffs and completely loose the function of a grooving rhythm instrument. Guitars get tuned lower and lower. That allows bassists to use higher frequencies again.

9. I understand that you like Bach a lot? do you find classical music inspiring for the bass guitar?

Totally. Bach’s music can also be a very good exercise to train timing and fingerings.
Especially for the metal genre classical music is a very good inspiration. Like metal, Richard Wagner for example tried to make the loudest and most extreme music at that point. Bach’s scales and rhythmic is something you can find in metal songs very often.

Thanks for the interview.

Thanks for your support. It was my pleasure!