Danilo Nikodinovski of Consecration

Danilo Nikodinovski / Photo: Aleksandar Zec

Nick: Hey there, Danilo. How are you these days? You’ve just played the Exit festival, so how was it? Also, what are your impressions of the Faith No More concert? I know you’re a huge fan of them so seeing them live in Serbia must have been pretty special.

Danilo: Hey Nikola! I’m great. Really really great. I’m feeling that way beacuse of that Faith No More show! Maybe it’s too early to tell, but hell, I think it was the best gig in my whole life. I’m into Faith No More since I was 6-7 years old. I remember watching the Epic video clip and next thing I remember is listening to The Real Thing album. Angel Dust was the first bootleg tape I bought at the black market. It was 1992, it was war already over here and it was impossible to find music except bootleging it. I remember that the tape was lousy taped and the sound was really crap. Maybe I wouldn’t noticed if I didn’t tape a clip of Midlife Crisis before I went to buy it, so I went to the market to replace it. The guy was so surprised since I was a kid, a nine year old who could tell if the recording was crap or not! I got King For A Day CD for my 12th birthday from my brother and it was one of the first CD’s I ever got. It was also one of the most beautiful presents I got – being a kid and listening to some long-awaited album for the first time on the original CD, with great sound and looking at the lyrics at the same time… It’s one of those moments. After their 1998 breakup I was in doubt I’d ever had a chance of seeing them live. Last year when they announced the reunion thing, I was so happy! And the moment a friend sent me SMS that they’re booked for this year’s festival… I was over the roof. She was really sweet by telling me that way before the official festival statement was announced. I still keep that message in my phone :-)

Consecration performance was great I think. One could tell by the audience – they were really into it. That can be tough sometimes, especially on festivals with lots of different people down there and lots of other bands on the bill. But I think we nailed it. We even had some pyrotechnics at the end of Đavo Nije Urban, which was neat. Trying to get those video recordings from Exit at the moment.

Nick: Consecration is pretty active, as might be noticed from your performance at the Exit festival, which is the largest festival in Serbia, for those who don’t know. What’s it like to do such gigs and where does it stand in comparison with standard – “venued” concerts? If I’m not wrong it was your second time playing the Exit festival with Consecration.

Danilo: Yup, this was the second time. The first time we played was three years ago, in 2007. Back in 2007 I think Satyricon were the headliners of that day, so the audience was really

Photo: Aleksandar Zec

funny and not-into-what-we-are-doing. This time the headliners were Cathedral, so that was so much better. I finally met Lee Dorian and he’s a great guy. He watched our show but I didn’t ask him what he thought about it… Cause the moment we were offstage we rushed to the Main Stage to catch Faith No More. After FNM’s outstanding performance we were running back to the Explosive stage to catch Cathedral. It was insane! They pulled out a great show and their bassist destroys.

We like both venues and big stages actually. Playing on huge stage gives you opportunity to have the best sound there is, plus there are more lights which is nice. The monitor guy is working separately from the guy doing FOH and you can make 100% from both. At the other hand, venues are better for the audience. The stage is lower and people are very near so it’s the intimate thing. We love being near our audience too. The only thing about smaller venues is that we can get very loud sometimes and that doesn’t turn up so great in some venues! We wouldn’t like our fans’ ears to bleed every time we play indoors :-) A lot of people told us our best show ever was on Povetarac last year. It was on a boat so it was outdoors and the sound was flying everywhere literally. The river was carrying the sound so the riffs could be heard miles and miles away! I wish I could be somewhere down the river to experience that, but it was impossible since I had to be onstage haha! The thing about smaller venues is that those are our gigs you know, people have come only for us. Plus we can play for an hour; hour and a half and we’re more relaxed that way. I guess the best of both options would be doing big stages with only our audience, which I hope will happen sometime soon :-)

Nick: Let’s focus on your latest achievement, published in 2010, named .avi. As I’m familiar with the band since (almost) its beginnings (if you recall maybe you’ll remember the interview we did in 2003), so it’s notable that the band has made such impressive achievements for all these years. What can you say about .avi, idealistically, musically, and artistically?

.avi

Danilo: Thanks! Of course I remember that interview! It was so long time ago, but surely I remember it! Well, .avi is displaying everything the five of us have been into during the last three or four years. We had those songs finished in 2007-2008 already and one day I just said “We have to book a studio and record all this, otherwise I’d go insane!” It was really frustrating because we were always late; aux was finished back in 2006 and we released it in 2008 for free download cause we couldn’t look for any labels anymore. The day we published aux we already had the whole .avi finished so the frustration thing was up again. We knew we had better songs and better album in our hands but couldn’t move an inch further. That didn’t stop us though. We played live like crazy and after the show with Hesus Attor, Hrvoje (the singer) liked us so much he said he’d talk to his label’s boss to see if is he can do something to help us. And he wasn’t lying – I exchanged some emails with the label and we tried to arrange a gig in Croatia because they wanted to see us live. That’s most important for a band of course, to be great live. The thing is that we got fucked up at the border because of some stupid “laws” for musicians of Croatia and Serbia. We couldn’t cross the border, got back home and the whole frustration thing got even worse. As we entered the studio to record the damn thing nevertheless, I sent the rough mix versions to the label to see if they’d like it. They told us it’s great and from then on we started talking about it being released. It was such a relief, knowing after nine years that your work has finally been recognized as something worthy.

Nick: As I’ve said in the review, .avi is an album which has history, as it was previously released as a live downloadable album, consisting of all songs that are on studio version, except of a brief interlude, Cisterna, and I have to say that it’s pretty interesting, as there are very few bands who do things like this. So, how come the live version came before the studio release? Did you have a clear vision about it since the beginnings or did it just come as a spark of inspiration?

Danilo: When we decided to put aux for free download, we wanted to be the first Serbian band that’d do something like that. I got an information that some band already did it a month before, so we took the live recording we had from the gig held the month before and made it as the first Serbian band that put not one but two albums for free download! We wanted to make a fuss about it and we succeeded in doing so! It was a new thing at that time, especially for Serbia. Even in the global music scene it wasn’t spread so much, only Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails had the balls to do it. The only difference between us and them is that the whole world knows who Thom Yorke and Trent Reznor are, and nobody gives a flyin’ fuck for a band from a country that majority of people didn’t even know existed :-) Anyway, we had those two records out and we wanted the fans have Aligator, Somna and those songs to listen to before we record them properly in studio. We already were playing songs off .avi back then so they weren’t that new to the audience. Like I said, we were late with releasing stuff for the most of the time, so it’s only now it’s finally backing to normal when we aren’t rushing anywhere. :-)

Nick: It’s evident that you guys have invested lots of blood and sweat on .avi, as my total impression about the album is that it’s a picky record, especially when it comes to production and arrangements, considering that the album has been recorded in a “one, two, three” way. Are you satisfied with the ending result?

Danilo: The ending result is great! We created all those songs on rehearsals by jamming and shaping them up on concerts, so the option of recording them together in that good old “one two three” take was the only appropriate way for us. It’s more honest and natural. You let the band breathe that way, especially the rhythm section. The music got so mechanical and dry in the 21st century it’s annoying, at least the studio recordings. We wanted to get way from it. Plus I hate the clicktracks, it’s so unnatural thing to do. The drummer isn’t a machine! He’s a living being, let him play! We have those little tempo changes you know, especially in Aligator after the whammy/wah solo and if we tried to play it on the clicktrack it would be a disaster.

Nick: Compared to the debut album aux, .avi has stepped forward and continued to develop and “progress”, so I might not be wrong if I described Consecration as a band in constant motion (no relation with DT). Would you dare to make any parallels between these two albums?

Danilo: Well, I’d say that .avi is way much superior in many aspects – in songwriting, arrangements, production, playing… aux is a collection of different songs and .avi has that constant

aux

flow through it. The musicianship progressed more and I think one could hear that. As musicians grow older the musicianship becomes better and stronger. Matija and I were listening to King Crimson’s Power To Believe couple of months ago and were thinking “we’re gonna have to make some ugly prog music such as this in 30 years from now on when we are old and fucked up!” So who knows haha! The progression is very important for any band. I know that I liked Radiohead when I heard Kid A. Now that was a real progression, and after Kid A I started to like OK Computer more. In The Woods… is the band that was progressively insane and all of their albums are top notch. I’m so sad they didn’t do more records… I guess we’ll expand our sound more. It is important for an artist to be open-minded and therein lays the key for any progress I think.

Nick: Speaking of that development or progression, could we expect that on your following releases you might add some new elements, instruments or whatever? Or you have traced your way now and it is the direction you strictly follow?

Danilo: We are not strict in any way when writing music. If we should be strict, it’s only in writing good songs!

New elements are always welcome of course. The initial idea of our future progression is to make the third album better than .avi the same way that .avi was better than aux. I hope we’ll make it. We shouldn’t think about it so much because it wouldn’t be so clever to make any kind of pressure before even starting it. But I think we are capable of doing it properly, since now there will be less pressure in studio and we’ll have more time rehearsing the ideas. About the additional instruments, who knows? A friend Dušan, he’s a super guy who plays the guitar in this great band Temple Of The Smoke, and he said he’s gonna buy an electric sitar! If he does it would surely be awesome thing to try. We found some Russian old keyboard really cheap, it’s a copy of Juno and has these great sounds that Plastikman and Autechre used on their old records, really warm and analogue. We’ll surely use that one on some of the songs.

Nick: The only complaint I have about this record is its accessibility, which is not your fault. But it’s a shame that such a quality record is not released, at least, as standard jewel case CD. Why is that? Haven’t you had any proper offers for releasing a physical copy of the album?

Danilo: We didn’t have time to do the physical version before the tour. So we thought about doing it digital only and we were giving away download codes for free with every bought tee shirt or longlseeve. We are still considering the option of doing CD’s, since we are getting enormously many requests for doing them.

Nick: I like to think that the vocals on .avi are like another instrument, as they do not sound like “standard” vocals, they are pretty atmospheric and “cosmic”. Do you share my opinion?

Danilo: Yes. The more cosmic it gets, the better haha! I don’t have fantastic singing abilities as some of my heroes, so I do what I can with my voice. It is important for every singer to learn his/her limits. That’s why I rely on the ambience of the song. The atmosphere is the most important thing to me and I like really grand reverbs and delays. I had ideas of those huge reverbs way before but didn’t know anyone was using them until I discovered Slowdive’s Just For A Day… And some Sigur Rós later. Some jazz records have amazing atmosphere since it’s all down to the atmosphere and the feel the musicians have. My brother played me Miles Davis’ Panthalassa, the Bill Laswell 1998 remix record and I was blown away. The intro is one of the best intros I’ve ever heard. All of them are playing the intro you know, and then there’s John’s guitar and the trumpet… Miles’ trumpet was magical. I often think about bringing that trumpet vibe to a Consecration song. Lazar is playing saxophone but we never recorded anything with it… I often think of my voice as that trumpet. It has to say a story with the tones. If it doesn’t, then it’s better to shut the fuck up :-)

Photo: Aleksandar Zec

Nick: What’s the secret behind the lyrics? You probably don’t like this question, but it’s always interesting to ask an artist about the meaning of their work, no? :D

Danilo: Well, there’s lots of secrets in them, at least there could be. There are many ways you can interpret Somna for instance, as a love lyric, or as religious one perhaps. A dear friend of mine that lived through a lot of stuff during the war in Bosnia, told me he took it [the lyrics of Somna] as a dialogue with God. I liked that interpretation! I’m not saying it’s the proper one, or something I was aiming to, but I’d say it’s a good one because it means something to him; he took it personally and deeply. There are no proper or false interpretations of the lyrics really – all of them just might be correct. Aligator is about the reincarnation circles. I’m just obssessed by the damn animals and I don’t know why. Since my early childhood. It wasn’t that I got a toy or seen it in zoo – I can’t even recall the exact moment when it happened. Alligators and crocodiles are really ancient. They’ve seen a lot of stuff on Earth and they are truly divine. They are beautiful creatures and I made a connection with reincarnation circles and karmakosmik elements through them. Đavo Nije Urban on the other hand is about Belgrade. This city is fascinating and there is that nostalgic effect you have when you are away from it for long enough. I have lots of dear friends here and also lots of foreigners do I believe, so the song is dedicated to them. The titletrack .avi is dedicated to a person and her name is hidden inside the lyrics of the song. Idiot Glee has a paganish vibe and I wrote it in a sort of half-trance. I’m working as a soundman on bands’ gigs and there was some boring rock band playing with lots of lousy covers and I just disconnected at one point, trailed off and poured the whole lyric down before one could say “pour some sugar on me”.

Nick: The thing that makes me especially glad is that it was announced earlier that .avi is going to be released as a vinyl, which is lovely for all record geeks, including me. Is there any news about this? When is it expected for the LP(s) to be available?

Danilo: The thing is that we spent lots of money on new guitars and some gear we needed in our studio, so at this point the vinyls and their pressing depend only on the download donations on the bandcamp site. The more money we get, the chances of vinyls being done are higher. I hope too it will happen soon, but it’s not depending on us only. Please donate if you like our music, and you’ll have the vinyls soon! :-)

Nick: What elements do other members of the band bring to Consecration? How wide is your influence field? I have to admit that I was a bit sceptical when a live version became available, not because I doubted the quality of the songs, but because the change you made from Opeth/Katatonia/Anathema to Isis/Tool/Autechre made me feel like that, though that’s probably because of my personal preferences.

Danilo: Well, it wasn’t like, “now we’re listening to this and we’ll sound like it”. I still listen to Anathema, Opeth and Isis as much as I did before and lots of other bands too of course. Right now I’m influenced by everything I ever listened to but that doesn’t mean we’ll do a mishmash of all music there is :-) We’re always influenced by everything we’re into. The most of the time it might be a subconscious thing and we like everything that’s good basically. New Tortoise is good, new Health record is interesting, new Danzig is fine too. I love new Anathema, it’s a great record. Really musical and inspiring, plain wonderful. I’m so happy the guys did it. I’m so happy for Faith No More, not only for their great show in Serbia but also for them personally, you know. They are having a great time on stage playing and that means a lot. It’s a musicians thing, something mutual I guess haha.

As for the other members, we all have a big role. Everyone of us. One of the main reasons why aux sounds like it does and .avi being .avi is that the lineup has changed. We just love to play with each other, you know. And you get different chemistry with different people. We feed each others off with the ideas and it’s usually someone’s idea that gets us started about creating a song. Like in jazz music… Somna was done that way and you can hear by its flow that everyone is having their own little part; and then the parts of arrangement where we are all onto it with full force. We love to let the music breathe – that’s why the classic metal bands in thrash and death metal could never fully do it for me. It’s too one-dimensional in my opinion, just to have riffs and riffs blasting all the time. For example, Sepultura’s Arise is a great record, and the first three tracks are just plain awesome but halfway through the album, I’m like “Okaaaay… Anything else?” Don’t get me wrong, I love Sepultura. Chaos AD and Roots have some outstanding, genre-widening songs. But I love the diversity the most. That’s probably why Faith No More’s King For A Day…Fool For A Lifetime is one of my favourite records ever.

Nick: Some new songs have been made and you’ve already presented them to the audience. How’s the reaction been? Are you already working on the new album? Can you say at this point how would your upcoming album sound?

Danilo: The reactions have been really great so far! We played like five new songs already and people really love them. I’d say Vertikala is a fave so far and the heaviness of Debeli Leptir

Photo: Aleksandar Zec

is pretty much appreciated too. We’ve played two other ones just once yet, on the last gig with The Ocean. The working titles are Gilmour and Vangelis and even raw-ish as they are right now, they got very warm reception. Gilmour is named that way because this is the first time I picked up a Strat for a song. I usually relied only on Les Pauls before, plus the chords and the atmosphere were very Floydy in this one, with delays and Small Stone going you know, so it went from there. The lyric is about something universal, about music and musicians who are masters in their craft and the impact they have on people and other musicians as well. Vangelis is named that way because of the sound also. I was playing a theme and Nemanja was playing something really crazy on the keyboard, and Matija just stood up and yelled “Vangelis, yes!” so it stuck haha! The lyric to it might change; I just got an interesting idea today. A friend of mine became a father today and I’m thinking of dedicating a lyric to him and all other fathers of the world. It’s a really breaking point in everyone’s life, becoming a parent, and we’re all in our late twenties by now, going to turn 30 soon and we’re already getting some bits and pieces of our own midlife crisis, getting a bit grumpy and bitter about small stuff haha. The fifth track is Sheed, older track that didn’t make it on .avi. It’s really a sludgy one. We might re-arrange it a bit and put it on our third album. We also played the track called Rafinerija twice, but weren’t satisfied how it turned out on the gigs. It’s sort or Rinasek part 2 sounding but with some new electronic elements. I think the overall atmosphere of the new stuff should be dangerous and beautiful. Like before but more emphasized.

Nick: How is your collaboration with Geenger Records? Do you have a signed contract with them, which is binding, or you do have free hands?

Danilo: Nobody can bind us in any way haha! You can’t bind music – it has a life of its own ;-) They liked us so much they told us to do basically whatever we want! Which is great. Nowadays it’s really hard to run a label and small bands have a hard time getting noticed and labels surely know it, so Geenger doesn’t interfere with our creative side, something which we are very satisfied with and pretty much thankful for. They have very good suggestions for the band as for the marketing stuff etc. We’re emailing each other almost every day and making suggestions about reviews, news, plans for the future gigs… It’s been great so far. They even told us recently they were sorry they couldn’t do more stuff for us at the moment cause they like us so much and think we deserve more… So if any label thinks we are good enough and they are serious enough, they should feel free to contact us! We are open to everything really.

Nick: I saw on Yumetal (www.yumetal.net) that you were mentioning there will be a Live DVD later this year or in 2011. Could you tell us something more about it?

Danilo: The initial idea was that we should record a whole show and release it as a DVD. Then we realized it might be better to have all the gigs recorded and then take all the best songs and pieces and make a compilation out of it. If you record only one show and something goes wrong… You get it. It might be better to record the third album in studio and then to do the DVD cause there will be more songs played and it’d be more interesting for the audience too. We want to make it special so I guess there’ll be lots of clips offstage, just jerking around in the venues we play, our rehearsing place etc. I’m not sure if we could afford the highest-class production there is, so we’d have to make it at least interesting to watch! I liked the idea Oceansize had for their DVD but I think every band is so much better with the audience present at the gig. Cult Of Luna’s DVD is really good, Isis’ Clearing The Eye also. Fantomas’ one was hilarious!

Amaranth

Nick: What happens with Amaranth? Do you have any plans to release something or it is just an “exhaust valve” for you, aside of Consecration?

Danilo: To be honest, I don’t know. I had plans for an album but couldn’t do it at that time. Right now I’m having thoughts of recording songs lo fi at home or hi fi in studio. Had thoughts of getting a band, a real rhythm section you know, doing it stripped off yet acoustic, with some clean electric guitar sounds too perhaps. Yet all this is fictional still, the band didn’t rehearse once. Might work on some ideas when Tomica, the bass player, moves back to the hood this fall. He’s a very talented musician, playing bass, guitar and doing some singing too. He has some singer/songwriter stuff done and I’d like to hear it. He’s a good guy and I’d love to do something with him. Maybe the music we do will have nothing to do with Amaranth, but still I’d like to play with him.

Nick: What gear/equipment you use in studio/live?

Danilo: I didn’t have my own amp during aux sessions so I borrowed a Line 6 XT Pro rack while we were recording it. I tweaked it a lot and found some great options. I think it was some kind of JCM 800 used if I remember correctly. I played the whole album on Epiphone Slash Signature, my first electric guitar. We were tuned to D at that time. When Lazar joined the band, he had a 5-string bass so we thought it was more interesting to tune down lower, to B and drop A. And it stuck to this day :-) In the meantime I was always looking for a great amp, you know, the ultimate one that had both super clean sound and an excellent drive. I tried everything – Marshalls, Mesas, Peaveys, Randalls, Voxes, Rolands… Was never 100% satisfied. Some had great gain but lousy clean and vice versa. It was so frustrating! Wanted to try an old Sunn amp but couldn’t find one at that time. Then I stumbled across Laney, the GH100L model. I fell on my ass the first second I tried it. Honest! I still don’t know what’s so special about that amp that I love so much. I guess every musician has something special that turns him on, and this amp had it all I needed. I remember I also tried a VH100 model, which has more channels and should be superior to this one, but it didn’t work for me. It was too bassy. Just like enormous amounts of bass, especially because of the low tunings I’m into and it was almost unbearable. So I picked a GH model instead. I guess a VH model is more compatible to Fender guitars, cause they have less lows, and for Gibsons GH is top notch. Eversince that day of December 2007 I rely on Laney 100%. For .avi recordings I used both Laney and some Mesa Boogie Dual Rectifier. The Recto has supernice gain on the crunch channel and vintage mode, with 6L6 tubes on, but I find it too difficult to play. It [the sound] doesn’t break up easily so you have to play really hard with the right hand. Just look at Petrucci’s right hand right now, it’s enormous! It’s also a way too much compressed for my taste, I like it more open and, um, sludgy, so I guess I will stick only to Laney sound for the third album. As for the other gear… I always loved effects. The first pedal I ever got was a delay! You know, usually a guitarist buys some distortion first, but no, I was so much into ambience and stuff  I got a Boss RV-3 first, which had both delay and reverb and was very hard to find at the time. Later on I got the Line 6 DL4 delay. I still remember the first day I tried it, a friend lent it to me, and I toyed with it and tweaked it for six hours! It was truly a revelation for me, one of the happier days of my life at that time. Call me nuts, but that’s really how passionate I feel about creating new sounds and stuff! And you can do so much with delays and loops it’s overwhelming. The other pedals are also loved the same. I’ve got the Crybaby wah for the classic rock soloing stuff, a Boss tremolo for shimmering… I got Digitech Whammy, the XP100 model which is so rare. I got it as a present from a friend, and I still thank him to this day for such a gesture. Two months later I accidentaly bumped into John Scofield’s backstage when he was playing Belgrade and I was so thrilled when discovered he uses it live too! Those pedals are really important in creating specific sounds. Somna or Idiot Glee couldn’t sound as they do without the Whammy pedal for example. We realized the Somna theme, with the harmonics and stuff, resembles Faith No More’s Kindergarten theme. That was unintentional, of course :-) I have a good memory for melodies and interesting sounds so I guess it all remains somewhere in the back of my head haha! Lots of people use pedals just because of the fun element, but to me they are really important for the initial creation of the song. I usually have an idea on my mind, some melody that’s already processed with all the effects, so I don’t tweak much when playing it, just dial in the effect that’s already in my head :-)

I didn’t like choruses, flangers and phasers before, but I fell in love with Small Stone Nano when tried one a friend had. I also knew nothing about fuzz pedals but just had to get me one

Photo: Aleksandar Zec

after seeing Mogwai in Zagreb. I got Electro Harmonix Big Muff Pi without even trying it! A friend of mine brought it the day before we entered the studio for recording .avi. I plugged it in studio and what can I say… It blew me balls off and made me grin the rest of the day. Couple of days later I remembered that HIM debut, Greatest Lovesongs Vol.666. I loved that album at the time it went out, and the crazy distortion sounds it got and then I realized the guitarist was using fuzz, Big Muff or something similar [maybe a Zvex]. Funny thing is that he was using Laney too and I knew nothing about it but the affection for the sound remained to this day. You know what, every pedal I got has a history of its own, so I might just do a blog on it. It’s just too long to write about them all here :-)

As for the guitars, I have Gibson Les Paul Studio Special and an Epiphone Slash Signature. They are tuned to B and drop A. The Gibson SG Special Faded that I got last year was tuned to B also but I tuned it back to E yesterday. I started to miss the old days of standard E and now that I set it back up I feel so much better haha! Plus it works better in E, the B tune was a bit too much for it. SG is a great guitar. I’ll use it for playing live with E-Play for sure, but I’d might use the E tune for some new Consecration stuff too. It might sound good! Different tunings create different feel of the song, so the intertwined tunings of B and E might sound interesting. The Fender Stratocaster I got is really something. It’s 1978 Standard. USA of course, there weren’t Mexicans back then :-) I didn’t like Fenders before getting this one, probably because I tried all the wrong pieces. This one is ace. Two chords played and I totally get why Gilmour, Hendrix, Clapton or Knopfler loved them so much. Danny Cavanagh also got one recently, which is interesting cause he played Les Paul for years, like me :-) I also got a Jean & Jean guitar. This Serbian guy named Jean makes it. He’s doing excellent guitars for really laughable prices and many musicians from Serbia are playing his guitars. This one is called Jean & Jean Dr. Project The Guitar Pro. It’s wine red, the body is semi-hollow and it has wonderful clean sounds. Reminds of PRS, Fender & Gibson together in one. I used it once for Consecration live but it didn’t work so well, cause it isn’t built for low tunings. I’ll tune it up to E again and might be using it for some Amaranth live… Nikola has a Fender Telecaster tuned to B. He had some Ibanez at the time we were recording .avi but he discovered the real stuff with Tele hehe. Ivan has some old bass he got, but I’m trying to convince him to get Epiphone Thunderbird cause they are awesome for the price and sound great. We’ll see…

Nick: Do you dream of buying a nice new guitar someday?

Danilo: Oh man, I don’t know. Six months ago I thought I finally got every guitar I ever wanted, but right now I just don’t know. It’s the neverending process, buying equipment :-) It might be interesting to try a 12-string guitar, but having the odd tunings on it. Tuning it to sevens and nines instead of just octaves, you know. I’d love to have a Martin acoustic someday. I just tried the Gibson Dark Fire in the shop where I already bought two Gibsons before and I have to say this new one is beautifully crafted. Lots of different tunings in a second, plus it has the P90 coil I started to like eversince I started to dig the dead old blues. Plus it’s wine red, my favorite colour for a guitar. But I can’t afford it, no way. I also tried some handmade Firebird that Jean & Jean made for a friend and that piece is just awesome. The neck is so long it’s insane. I might borrow it for some recordings, who knows! As for the amps, I also discovered Hiwatt 50 Custom Head when I was playing in Paris with E-Play last month. Wow, what a clean sound! I love my Laney more than everything, but I just thought of having Hiwatt for clean sounds and Laney for distortions, it would totally destroy everything. Out of this planet! But it’s too heavy to carry two amps of that size plus boxes all the time… But might try it in studio! I also think a lot about microphones. Now that’s neverending. I finally found out what mic was Mike Patton using live. It’s a Shure KSM9 and it’s a condenser with very little feedback or no feedback at all. That’s why he can easily jump to the audiences without causing any feedbacks haha! I also heard that Peter Steele (RIP) was using it when he was playing Belgrade couple of years ago. Might try it myself to see how hard it is to use live, though it’s rather expensive. I’m also dreaming of Neumann u87 for studio recordings, but man, those mics are expensive as hell. It’s about 2k euros and that’s like six Serbian salaries! It’s a bit underwhelming knowing you’d have to work half a year for a single microphone! Life’s a bitch sometimes.

Nick: What would be perfect line-up in your opinion? Made of the best vocalist/guitarist/bassist/drummer/keyboardist in history… I’m guessing you’ll mention Mike Patton or Mike Akerfeldt or David Gilmour, but let’s see.

Danilo: Hmmmm… Well you got me, Mike Patton would be an obvious choice yeah! :-) The thing is that all the guys you mentioned are ace but very strong individuals, and who knows if they could manage to do something together you know. Akerfeldt is a good choice, Danny Cavanagh too. Danny’s been my guitar hero for ages. He led me to Gilmour, not the other way round! Though I don’t think Gilmour would be a good combination with Patton, since Dave is a “chill” type of guy and Patton is so lucid. It’s interesting question but I never thought about it really. You know what, I think Mike Patton, Tom Waits and Aphex Twin would be great together! It would be rather sick but in a good way hehehe. With some Robert Fripp appearances. Trey Spruance is so talented guitarist, I think he and Akerfeldt might be interesting together. But that’s another band…

Nick: What bands/artists have influenced you since you were kid and later? I guess that we have a lot in common about that, but I would mention Bajaga especially, as I’ve been listening to his music since I was 5 years old, haha.

Photo: Aleksandar Zec

Danilo: Bajaga & Instruktori, definitely! I think I was 3 or 4 years old when I heard him and I became a fan instantly. He was so charming and the music was both rocking and beautiful. Jahači Magle is my favorite record of his, it’s so rich arrangement-wise. One of Bajaga’s strongest weapons are his ballads, the colorful lyrics and the atmosphere in those songs he relies on so much. I was just thinking the other day it’s such a shame that Serbia and Yugoslavia in general, never had such a great pop/rock record eversince S Druge Strane Jastuka came out. And it was made in 1985! S Druge Strane had a rock opener, then a bluesy-rockabilly song, reggae one, a French kind of song, jazz one and a strong ballad… Serbian bands are so one-dimensial these days it’s really a pity.
I really enjoyed Black’s Wonderful Life in my early ages. It’s one of my favourite records. Colin’s voice was just amazing. Lots of people only know the titletrack single, but I like all of the songs, especially Everything Is Coming Up Roses, Sweetest Smile, Just Making Memories and Paradise.

W.A.S.P. were my first metal band. It was 1989 or 1990; my brother and I were taping a metal chart on domestic TV channel cause we were too young to stay up late to watch it. So by taping the charts we watched all the songs over and over again and that’s how we got into almost all of the bands that were there! Jadranka Janković hosted the chart and she’s really a legendary journalist, like a domestic metal icon of some kind. After the second W.A.S.P. gig here in Belgrade last year I found her on Facebook and said thanks and how much he helped me becoming a metalhead, deciding to form a band myself later on etc. She replied and was really nice. That meaned a lot to me. I might thank her again for the Faith No More show, cause I know she’s been friends with the band for years.

My brother was into GN’R and I was into W.A.S.P. and that’s how it started. Then we discovered Maiden, Metallica, Megadeth, Skid Row, Def Leppard, Sepultura… My bro soon got into faster stuff such as Suicidal Tendencies and Napalm Death and so on and 1991-1992 was great time for metal and rock. You got Faith No More, Metallica did their breakthrough with self-titled album, grunge was becoming big with Nirvana, Soundgarden, Alice In Chains and Pearl Jam… Alternative scene was going stronger too. In the mid-90′s I got more into underground, European doom & goth scene like Tiamat, Amorphis, My Dying Bride, Anathema, The Gathering, Samael etc.

Nick: So, to conclude: what happens next?

Danilo: Rehearsals. New songs. New ideas. Gigs, new album, more gigs. Ideas for DVD in between.

Nick: Do you have anything you would like to add/ask? I’m out of questions.

Danilo: I’d like to apologize to the Prog Sphere HQ for such long answers I gave. It’s wasting internet space, not the pages in the magazine haha, but then again I know that Consecration is a small band and that my opinions perhaps weren’t of any relevant importance. This band is ten years out there and I’ve been through a lot of stuff already so I’d like to share it with other people and other musicians. I have no secrets and I’d like to help others with everything I know that might help. I know lots of bands are reading this, lots of bands that just started or the ones that have one album released, or don’t have it released, or those who would love to make one but have difficulties in doing it. I’d like to encourage bands not to stop creating music and doing what they love. Consecration might not do a lot for the global music scene after this first ten years, but we might in the next ten :-) This interview is really something for a start and I’m so happy I have the opportunity to share my views with the world.

Billy Gould is one of my heroes and and he did one interview with Jadranka Janković just before the show on the Exit festival in which he advised young bands not to give up! I was really moved by that because it means that nowadays, in these weird times for good music, our heroes still care for that. They didn’t forget the times they were at during their beginnings and that hope for better times is overwhelming. Thank you Nikola and all staff at Prog Spheres for inspirational questions and for giving me this opportunity to speak up. Prog music is one of the most underrated genres there are but with bands such as Porcupine Tree, Opeth, Cynic, Mastodon or King Crimson, the future of prog is in good hands!

Nick: Thank you for the interview, Danilo. Best wishes.

Danilo: Cheers!

Nikola Savić is a prog enthusiast, blogger and author, in addition to being the founder of Prog Sphere, Progify, ProgLyrics and the ongoing Progstravaganza compilation series.
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