For my taste there's a lack of originality in the doom genre in current times. I miss bands who add something new to the old patterns, but there's a light at the end of the tunnel and its named YOB! They are no real newcomers, because they have released two excellent full-lengths in the past but with the new album "The Illusion Of Motion" they have extended their style. There are still riffs that could have been played by the Melvins or mid-90's Sleep, but YOB have created structures that are more than just a pure repetition of the old stuff. More dissonant and aggressive moments have found their way into the massive monolithic creations of YOB and this outstanding group had left the usual doom limitations behind. Due to this inspiring changes within the YOB sound and the fact that this group belongs to the all-time Cosmic Lava heavy faves it was the right time to do an interview with singer and guitarist Mike about the new album, the new deal with Metal Blade Records, spiritual beliefs, gear snobs and more.
Hello Mike! The new album "The Illusion of Motion" that will be released at October, 19th continues the saga of YOB in an impressive way. But in opposite to the two previous albums, you have integrated a wider range of musical influences, without ignoring the roots of YOB. What's your point of view about it?
We didn't really think too much about it at the time of writing the material for "The Illusion Of Motion". It is known to our friends that we love the entire spectrum of metal and hardcore-whether it be DRI, Iron Maiden, SLEEP, Mental Horror, Akercocke, Cirith Ungol, Satyricon, IMMOLATION, The Saints, etc. Those influences started showing up in our songwriting. We wanted to integrate these influences into our sound but also keep our original foundation as a DOOM metal band.
For my taste, the new album has a much darker and aggressive mood in opposite to the other material you have recorded in the past. Can you agree or what do you think?
I definitely agree. It has our heaviest, most chaotic moments that we have recorded yet IMO. But our new record also has our slowest riffs too. That being said each of YOB's records has it's dark, aggresive moments. But there is something different about the vibe of "The Illusion Of Motion" for sure.
What are the new songs about?
The new songs are about the limitations of human conceived knowledge and the dogma perpetuated by our full belief in our own creations and ideologies. Something like that.
One of YOB's trademarks is the ability to create epic and long winding tracks, without being boring for a second. There's still a very natural feeling to it and so I like to ask you: how do you create such thick monuments?
We're glad you think so! I guess we write DOOM from the perspective of attention deficit disorder. We may have a 26 minute song on our new cd but it is always changing and shifting. We change up styles of playing the same riff, vocal structures, effects and tempos to provide a dynamic quality to the brevity. As much as we can anyway. YOB approaches DOOM like a death metal band would. Lots of twists and changes. But the trick is to not lose the vibe in the song, ever. The riff played in minute 25 of the song has to feel as immediate as the riff in the first minute. Not easy. We do our best.