BLAME: Call to Social Unity

Valeriy Golub (Blame)

Blame is a technical death metal project from Kiev, Ukraine formed by guitarist and composer Valeriy Golub in 2014. The same year Blame released a debut EP ‘Dark Eyes,’ and earlier this month the second EP release ‘Almanac‘ was launched. Nile drummer George Kollias recorded drums for the new songs. In an interview for Prog Sphere, Golub shares the message behind ‘Almanac,’ his view on technology, and more.

Define the mission of Blame.

1) Identify the problems of modern society / individual person.

2) A call to the social unity.

3) Propaganda of critical thinking process.

Tell me about the creative process that informed your new album Almanac and the themes it captures.

Almanac is a symbiosis of old and new songs. We are inspired by our society and current world events. The song “War” is about the military crisis in our country. “Chalice” is about depletion of the world’s oil resources. “Gaia” is about how we neglect nature and do not pay attention to the ecology problems that we created on our planet in the pursuit of progress. “Desires” is the song about the difference between thoughts and actions — on the causal hereditary connection.

Blame - Almanac

What is the message you are trying to give with Almanac

To push the listener to make conclusions about what is happening and try to change the negative global trends through individual opinion/actions. For example — the war is not a method to fix the country’s disagreements, the oil production is the containment of the new technologies, the fragility of societies is an uncontrolled destructive mass force. It is time for the mankind to pay attention to global problems, the importance of a sense of belonging, of having a position which has the goal to change the world for better.

How did you document the music while it was being formulated?

In the beginning, the idea is invented and put on the recorder. Then it transforms into the main theme on the guitar. After that, the previously invented ideas are added, which are corrected in the process of their unification. Sometimes the order of ideas changes. The best parts are selected for the chorus and the rest are corrected for the entry and ending.  After that we added expressive means such as artificial flageolets, bands, slides, extra lots, etc. As soon as the order of guitar riffs is determined and the demo is confirmed – the bass is added and the drums are adjusted.

Is the dynamic flow of the pieces carefully architected?

Of course. At each stage, changes can be made. Sometimes notes on the guitar are changed due to drum changes. Sometimes the structure of the drums changes because of the adjustment of the bass guitar. Doesn’t matter if it is an additional sound effect like sub kick or reversed delay on a guitar part — until the sound becomes as merged as possible and each effect will fit ideally into a specific place.

Describe the approach to recording the album.

The main approach is to correct the idea several times. Experimenting with the sequence of parts until the moment when the idea becomes as expressive as possible. From the beginning, at the stage of composing guitars, then at the stage of writing other instruments and then when we are writing the final version. In this process, the tone of the instruments is adjusted until the overall sound will be formed.

How long Almanac was in the making?

The album itself was created in a few months. The main delay was to find the free time for recording drums (George is very busy). After that, vocals were recorded in a week. The mixing process took a lot, about a year, since we are very busy at our main works / families. In general, it took about two years. But some of the song ideas are about 6-8 years old.

Which bands or artists influenced your work on the release?

George Kollias (Nile), Sergey Golovin.

What is your view on technology in music?

It’s incredible that nowadays we all have the opportunity to create music just with a desktop computer and sound interface. The possibilities of digital guitars amp/mixing equipment emulation and IR technology allow creating records in better quality than many of middle and budget level studios sometimes, while the sound of audio plugins gets better every day. This simplifies the creation and recording process and makes possible not being in the studio all the time.

Do you see your music as serving a purpose beyond music?

We would like to believe so!

What are your plans for the future?

We would like to bring our music to as many people as possible outside our country. The reality is that our scene and musical journalism are at a low level in most cases. The culture is relatively young and subjected to mainstream currents. Not many people understand what we are doing and what it takes for us. Despite the insubstantial support from our Ukrainian fans, we see positive feedback from Europe, USA, Canada to our releases and we would like to continue to create new material even faster, better and better for all who are interested in our project. Thanks!

Almanac is available from Bandcamp. Blame is on YouTube and Facebook.

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