Summon: How did the band get started?
Kommandant: Originally, the band started as a simple side project. The overwhelmingly positive reception to the first release spurred us to become a serious, full-time band in winter 2005.
Summon: What kind of music do you play?
Kommandant: The band plays blackened death metal. Many people have mentioned that they also hear an industrial element in our music, but that observation came as a surprise to us.
Summon: How has the band response been?
Kommandant: By in large the responses and reviews we’ve been getting have been positive. People seem to sense that we’re on the cusp of something and everyone seems to be waiting anxiously for our next release to see where we’re headed musically.
Summon: In your words describe the type of music you play?
Kommandant: Extreme metal. We’re not focused on adhering to the “culture” or trappings of any particular sub-genre within metal. We play what intrigues us and it is up to our listeners to categorize it.
Summon: Where did the band name come from?
Kommandant: “Kommandant” is a word for a military rank that exists in the armed forces of several countries. It essentially means “commander” but is not necessarily interchangeable with the rank of commander.
Summon: Introduce the band members.
Kommandant: The current lineup is Jim (guitars), Marcus (guitars), Mike (bass), Nick (vocals) and Dave (drums)
Summon: Who writes the music? Lyrics?
Kommandant: Kommandant is a truly collaborative effort. Everyone is free to suggest or change ideas or expand upon concepts. We’ve established that if you come in with a song idea or riff you can’t be afraid of someone else changing it.
Summon: And where do the lyric ideas come from?
Kommandant: A great many sources: world events, literature, sometimes something as simple as an abstract concept or a turn of phrase.
Summon: How many albums/CD’s have you released?
Kommandant: Iron Hands on Scandinavia was our demo, followed by our first full-length, Stormlegion. We released an EP titled Kontakt last year on Planet Metal and we’re currently in the studio to record a new full-length called The Draconian Archetype.
Summon: Tell me about some the songs on the latest CD?
Kommandant: This new album is going to be a truly defining moment for us. Everyone involved is focused and dedicated and it will show.
Summon: Do you have any side projects?
Kommandant: No. Kommandant is everyone’s first and only priority.
Summon: Who are some of your musical influences?
Kommandant: Everyone brings a great variety of personal influences into the mix. It would be unfair to try to say that we as a whole are influenced by one band or another when if you asked each of us individually you would likely get a different answer.
Summon: What is the band like when you play live?
Kommandant: Our live show is what makes us really stand apart. We are very focused on the visual as well as the musical performance when we play live. Stage presence seems to be a lost art these days.
Summon: What was the best band you played with?
Kommandant: We’ve played with a great number bands that we respect, including Watain and Behemoth. Each show is important in its own right.
Summon: Have you guys ever played in another country?
Kommandant: No, but it is one of our goals for the next year.
Summon: How big of crowd shows up at shows usually?
Kommandant: It varies depending on the show. We would rather play a packed house in a medium sized venue than a half empty large club if given a choice. It’s really about atmosphere.
Summon: How is the crowd response when you play?
Kommandant: Quite enthusiastic. We’ve played shows on the other side of the country for people who know nothing about us and been rewarded with a very positive crowd response.
Summon: What are some of new favorite black metal/death metal bands?
Kommandant: Again, it’s impossible to speak for the entire group when all of us have widely varying tastes.
Summon: Any plans on writing any new material?
Kommandant: Currently we’re recording all of our newly-written material. It should be released sometime in late summer 2011.
Summon: Have you ever heard any band(s) that seemed like they were influenced by you guys? And do you like those bands?
Kommandant: I don’t think there’s anyone out there currently that is doing anything similar to what we are, especially not anywhere in the United States.
Summon: What does the future hold for the band?
Kommandant: Our schedule is currently filling up quickly with shows all across the US for the rest of 2011. We’re looking forward to playing in new places and expanding our circles of influence.
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