Interview: The Order Of Israfel

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THE ORDER OF ISRAFEL consist of Swedish Patrik Andersson Winberg on Bass, Staffan Björck on the guitars, Hans Lilja on the drums and Australian Tom Sutton (formerly of Church of Misery) on vocals and guitars.

Just before they were about to hit the stage of London’s Islington Academy supporting Pentagram, I had a little chat with Tom about their debut album, WISDOM, and music in general.

Destructive Music: How did you get the ideas for the songs on Wisdom, is it a concept album as such?

Tom: Yes and no, I guess the songs came together over a period of a year, they took quite a long time. Half the songs on the album have a certain type of lyrics, and the other half another certain type of lyrics. Half the songs are almost horror stories, Hammer horror type movie stories, and half the stories are more based on life lessons and life experience and life in general. I often talk about spiritual lessons that we all learned along the way, but done in a language where it might not super obvious what I’m talking about when you first listen to it.

It can work like story-telling, if you see a film or read a book. There’s a story there, but the story needs talking about. In some way those songs are connected, and then the horror stories are connected. It’s almost two themes there.

DM: How did you write the songs?

Tom: Up until now all except for one songs on the album I demoed in great detail, I made the drum tracks with the drum machine, recorded all the guitars and bass and vocals – I even made all the sound effects and intros, because I was still in Australia at the time. I didn’t know where I’m going to end up, and it’s really hard if you’ve got a band to describe it. First it’s difficult to do, and then people don’t know it’s actually good or if they’d like it. If the band thinks it’s cool, then let’s see. In that way I really wrote the songs, even down to small details.

We are working on the next album now and everyone is putting in more this time. On the first album there are big parts that are not me as well, for example the first bit is Staffan’s acoustic guitar, one is mine and one is his. The new album is definitely more collaborative. Basically I come with pretty new songs. Now I’ve run out of finished songs.


DM: What were the musical influences for Wisdom?

Tom: The biggest one is very much Cathredral – first doom metal band I’ve ever heard and I’m still obsessed with them today. Candlemass and Leif Edling’s other band, Krux. They have members of Entombed and Opeth, and Pentagram, and Reverend Bizarre. Then there’s also stuff like folk music, you know, as well as Led Zeppelin, and there are riffs from Metallica, and Entombed. It’s doom metal influences but other stuff as well.

DM: What are your albums of this year?

Tom: The latest Tribulation album, The Children Of The Night, and The Death Penalty album. I listen to this album a lot, I really love it.

DM: Thank you very much for the interview, looking forward to seeing you live in an hour!

 WISDOM is out on Napalm Records