The Rise of Imperium
CoC interviews Tommy Lindal of Imperium
by: Pedro Azevedo
If you thought of a band consisting of Tommy Lindal (formerly in Theatre of Tragedy) on guitars, Dag (formerly in Dismal Euphony) on vocals and bass, Frode Clausen (from Dismal Euphony) on guitars, and Trym (of Emperor and Enslaved) on drums, you would probably believe something very interesting may come out of it. And Imperium's demo tape (see my review in this issue) shows you that this combination works. Despite the problems involving Dag (who left Dismal Euphony and is currently in jail for beating up a man who threatened Keltziva, Dag's sister and Dismal Euphony vocalist), their demo tape has now been finally released and they are working on a deal with Nuclear Blast. Having had the chance to chat with Tommy Lindal, I also asked about his former band, Theatre of Tragedy. A recent official press release stated that both Tommy and ToT's great vocalist, Liv Kristine Espenaes, were out of the band; however, Liv seems to have recently returned to the band. So, read on for news about Theatre of Tragedy and a band you may very well be hearing of in the future: Imperium.

CoC: Would you like to give us some details on your departure from Theatre of Tragedy?

Tommy Lindal: Theatre of Tragedy told me that, for professional reasons, I had to leave the band. My recovery was slow, and they had no time to wait for me. So I had no choice...

CoC: And Liv Kristine? I heard her departure from Theatre of Tragedy was canceled: what happened?

TL: Theatre of Tragedy weren't comfortable with her living so far away [ToT is in Norway while Liv is in Germany -- PA], and that she had so much control over our label [Massacre Records] (someone in the band disliked that), so they decided to kick her out of the band. A month later, she and our label had a meeting with the band in Norway and forced them to continue with Liv on their next three CDs, or else Massacre Records would sue them...

CoC: What do you think will be the future of Theatre of Tragedy now?

TL: The future, as far as I know, is that they will try and record three CDs (no matter what they will sound like) next year to finish the contract with Massacre Records, then break up to start from the beginning again. But I think that the band will die out.

CoC: Why was Imperium formed?

TL: Imperium was formed late '95. We (a couple of friends) rehearsed some songs, and liked it very much. We had always been talking 'bout starting a band together. I felt something was lacking for me in Theatre of Tragedy, 'cuz I wanted to blow out some brutal steam, so we started Imperium.

CoC: Will Imperium be a full-time band, as in playing live and all?

TL: Imperium is a full-time band for all of us. We want to do it all the way.

CoC: Is your Nuclear Blast deal finished yet?

TL: No, we still have some small problems. The Dismal Euphony guys aren't allowed to play in two bands yet, but we will fix that problem soon. Right now, our singer/bassist is in jail, 'cuz he beat up another guy. He will be released in two months, so we have to wait for him.

CoC: Why did the demo take so long to come out?

TL: We recorded it between the end of '95 and the beginning of '96. Then in June, I had to go to Germany to record _Velvet Darkness They Fear_ with Theatre of Tragedy. As you all know by now, I suffered a little brain bleeding at the end of the recording (August '96), so I was hospitalized for two months. That is the reason why it was delayed, but now it is out, at last.

CoC: Will you have a full-time keyboard player in the future?

TL: Nah, I don't think so. We will only use a keyboard in the studio and when we play live. That is the plan so far... We don't want to have too many people involved, 'cuz then it's easier to make a mess of things. The keyboards aren't taking a long time to practice, so we won't practice with a keyboard player.

CoC: When will the recording of a CD start?

TL: I really hope it will begin in March / April, but it depends on what happens with the Nuclear Blast thingie.

CoC: Would you like to describe your sound, since your band isn't well-known yet?

TL: It's hard, I don't know what to say... You (the listeners) are the right people to ask.

CoC: What will change in your sound, relatively to the demo?

TL: Nothing, I hope. I'm quite satisfied with the sound so far. Maybe the sound will be a little bit cleaner.

CoC: What are your personal hopes for the future of Imperium?

TL: That I will continue to play as my feelings tell me to, and that you all will like it.

CoC: What are your current views on the Black Metal scene?

TL: I think that all the Norwegian Black Metal scene has become fake. It's just considered very cool to dye your hair black and go out with inverted crosses, so almost everybody does it. So the whole scene is just fake. I don't like it.

CoC: Any final messages?

TL: Please visit my pages at: for some more info.

(article submitted 5/2/1997)

2/5/1997 P Azevedo 5 Imperium - <untitled>
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