THORNYWAY Show the Path of Righteousness


Thornyway come from Minsk in Belarus, and this metalcore act has been active since 2010. They launched their debut album ‘Absolution’ in 2014, and are planning to release its follow-up titled ‘Awaken’ this year. In a new interview for Prog Sphere, the band talks about their mission, the new music, and more.

Define the mission of Thornyway.

The mission of Thornyway is, first of all, to open the door to Christianity for people for whom there is no other way to learn about it, except with the help of heavy music of high quality in the Russian language. In the last album, we also touch upon the problems which mostly concern life in the post-Soviet countries, including excessive interference of a state in people’s lives, unfair judicial system, and a huge number of tragedies due to indifference and negligence. As the result,  the person who shoplifted a chicken because he has to feed his family gets into prison, while officials steal billions, and one of their drugged son in a car kills mom with one year old child on a pedestrian crossing, and nothing happens. Even the Internet has become a dangerous place, since it is no longer free and independent. Hundreds of people, who had been convicted of felony because of repost or “like” in the social media, are in prison now.

You have recently started a Kickstarter campaign asking help for funding your second album “Awaken.” Why have you decided to go that route?

We decided to do so because we had spent all our money on developing our own computer game, which we wanted to use to promote this album, but after we had faced with unscrupulous freelance artists, we had tore-start the development 3 times completely from scratch.

And we are infinitely grateful to those people who helped us finish the project though we could offer them only a small reward. Apart from that, we realized that many people highly appreciate our music and would like to have it on physical media, CD and Vinyl. We pay special attention to this fact, and we want to make CD and Vinyl the most complete version of the album, with the exclusive design.

Thornyway - Awaken

Is the album fully complete? What can you tell me about the new songs comparing with your debut album “Absolution”?

Compared to the previous album, the album Awaken became more specific. At some point we tried to reflect the most complex biblical themes which the Christians are afraid to touch upon, such as the history of the character Iyyov (Job). If we sang about the internal problems of a human in “Absolution”, in Awaken we present what you have to face in the real world, and what is happening right now. Biblical prophecies are coming true before our very eyes. For instance, we see how radical Muslims are willing to kill and kill in the name of their religion, coming under the guise of refugees. These people have formed sleeping terrorist cells which are waiting only for the opportunity to take the truck. However when the refugees ask the Christian church for help they meet love. It’s something they’ve never experienced, and it changes their hearts. We also see that even in the toughest Muslim countries, such as Singapore, the largest Christian summits can take place with hundreds of pastors from around the world. The world is changing by re-discovering Christianity.

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

We can write music for our albums for several years in a row. We have a large stock of demos which we collect in albums. The songs are always interconnected, and the plot evolves while reflecting a new facet in every next song. Some songs were written and released in demo version more than eight years ago, but in the album they have been reworked so that it is almost impossible to recognize them. We took the courage to include singing in soft falsetto to a hard decor album, or songs which are consist entirely of symphonic music, even without the guitars, or a songs of an exotic genre “piano screamo”. We are great fans of symphonic sound: for the previous album we negotiated with a real church choir, and for the new one we also recorded a choir, but this time a children’s choir. We want to do what gives shivers even to us every time. We are ready to spend a huge amount of time on that.

Is the dynamic flow of the pieces carefully architected?

Of course, even the songs in the teaser on YouTube are not in the order in which they will be on the album, but in which they look better in the teaser. The album will have a different order of songs, it will reflect a very different drama. We were shocked with the fact that by changing the order of the songs, we can obtain in one case “deathcore album”, “post hardcore” in another, and even “epic symphonic metal” album. Still, in the end there will be an order that will correctly show the story.

Which bands or artists influenced your work on the release?

WILHELM FRIEDEMANN BACH, The Chariot and the St. Petersburg band ADVENT.

We could put a lot of bands here to get the attention of their fans. But you can just listen to the teaser, and everything will be clear.

Moreover, each participant gets inspired in their own way and writes completely different music in their side projects.

For example, our bass player is engaged in atmospheric black metal. Someone may like our drone, or a cute and heartfelt project Ukulele Pugs. We participated in the creation of post metal. How about almost totally keyboard album that contains atmospheric version of all our songs. And maybe a bit of pop music from our drummer. Or mad electronic music from our guitarist. And you can expect something more special from us here, and on our YouTube channel.

What is your view on technology in music?

Each technology exists to achieve specific goals. Now the popular opinion is that you can record all the parts at home, send them to a sound engineer via Internet, and get an excellent result. But you will never know what result you could get by working with a good sound producer like Josh Schroeder, Jacob Hansen, Fredrik Nordstrom, Steve Albini directly. It feels as if these people draw with the help of sounds. But fewer and fewer people can truly appreciate it. The culture of listening to music is now at a very low level.


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

We even see the result of this serving. Many people wrote us that our music supported them in difficult life situations, we also know people whose lives have completely changed. These people became our good friends.

What are your plans for the future?

Well, to get through this and survive. But, if to be serious, we have very few videos, and most likely in the nearest future we will concentrate on that.

Follow Thornyway on Facebook.

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