Damnationis is a Symphonic Black Metal band that hails from France, and while they have been around in some shape or form since 2006, they recently released their debut album, 2023’s The Fallen Princess. We recently had the pleasure to listen to the album and did a review about it, so it was exciting to have the possibility to talk with the guys of the band to discuss the record, Damnationis’ history and a lot more. I hope you enjoy it.
Hello, guys. Welcome to MusikHolics! It’s a pleasure to have you here. How you’ve been?
Hello! Happy to be here with you to talk about our new album, The Fallen Princess.
First and foremost, congratulation on the release of your debut album, The Fallen Princess. What can you tell us about the reception that the record has received in recent weeks?
Thank you, we were pleasantly surprised by the reception. All the comments were excellent, whether on the recording or the songs. It’s nice because we’ve been working on this album for a few years to make it impeccable.
For people that are not familiar with your work, what can you tell us about the history of Damnationis?
Damnationis is a french Extreme Metal band formed in 2018. The band’s musical style evolved to a Symphonic Black Death Metal. The lyrical themes are influenced by Gothic literature, mythology & horror. Today it is a major group on the Extreme Metal scene in Lorraine, so we have forged a solid reputation on stage and have been able to play with international groups such as Negator, Agathodaimon, Zornheym.
When doing research for the review of The Fallen Princess, I found out that you started out as Damnation back in the mid-2000s. Why the change of name?
Indeed our group is older. We were then playing under the name of Damnation, but it was difficult to recognize our group because there are many groups bearing this name, so we chose to change our name while keeping our DNA and passing therefore the name in Damnationis, meaning Damnation in Latin.
On the other hand, considering the band’s beginning so many years ago, why took you so long to release your debut?
There are several reasons for this. First of all the changes of members, we have a hard core with Patrice, Adrien and me (Stéphane Leonardi), but we had trouble finding a keyboard and a drummer, we stayed motivated and we knew that this album was going to be released when we were ready, but I must admit that it took some patience 😉
Considering the brand of music that you guys do, what can you tell us about your evolution throughout the years?
Over the years our style got closer and closer to Black metal. The more we changed the songs, the closer they got to 90s black metal.
Being from France, how would you describe the Metal scene in that country?
The scene exists, but it remains discreet. Metal music is not one of the main scenes in France. Yet we have one of the biggest European Metal festivals with HellFest.
There is also the factor of you guys being a band starting out. From that perspective, what are the challenges of getting yourself out there and get people interested in your music?
It’s very difficult to get started in 2023. The challenges are many, what our previous years have taught us is that we must not want to go too fast, we will progress step by step and move forward in the right direction. There is also management in order to make themselves known to the general public. The scene will also help us to make ourselves a lot more known.
In terms of the album, what about the recording process? How long it took you? Any interesting anecdotes about how the songs were made?
The recording was long… very long. The COVID pandemic having passed by, we took two years longer than what we had agreed at the start, but the result was worth the wait. For the record, we knew we wanted Dominus…Spiritus…Satanas to have a solo, but two days before we didn’t know what it was going to look like. It was at the very last moment that we managed to find the inspiration, at the foot of the wall 😉
Which song do you think represents the spirit of the album the most?
I think The Fallen Princess represents this album well. The additions of female voices demonstrate our desire to always improve our songs until everyone is satisfied with the result. It can take several months or even years for some songs.
I know for a fact that Dimmu Borgir was a big influence for Damnationis, but what other groups played a big role in your sound?
Cradle of Filth also plays a big role in our inspirations, but that’s not all. Path to Hell, for example, was greatly influenced by At The Gates. The horror mood of the whole album can also be inspired by Behemoth and Gloomy Grim.
One thing I noticed about The Fallen Princess is that you guys rarely go overboard with fast-paced parts in your songs. Is that a concise decision or a natural inclination of the band?
It’s a decision, we are committed to remaining melodic and accessible, which is why we limit the too technical parts which generally serve the songs. It is clearly a choice that the group has made.
As of right now, what are the current plans for Damnationis? What are you going to do for the remainder of the year?
We have just integrated our new keyboard, Cyrielle, our new drummer, Jeremy, and our new guitarist, Jean-Philippe. We need to work to prepare our future concerts. Nevertheless, we have a little surprise in store for you in a few weeks with the release of a single and a new cover in this single. I won’t say more for the moment but it’s going to be very cool.
Thank you for taking the time to do this, guys. It was awesome! Any last words for our readers? Where can we follow you in social media?
Thank you for everything, it was a great pleasure to chat with you. You can find Damnationis on all social media platforms and all streaming platforms. We can’t wait to see you on stage for our next gigs, don’t hesitate to come see us to make you damn 😉