Interview with Nympherus (Seol, Guatemala)

I knew about Seol after doing a little research on Guatemalan bands, I liked some of their albums and I have been following them for some time. I had the opportunity to meet Nympherus at the failed Noctis Invocat gig in San Salvador, we talked a little and I took a couple of his albums with me. I have searched for some interviews with him on the internet and I have not found any, and I thought of adding my own in the first edition of the magazine.

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I was particularly interested in the origin of Nympherus' fascination with this type of music in someone with such experience as him, and how he came to create the band.

Greetings, from a very young age I have listened to metal, thanks to the girl who babysitted us when my parents were not at home. She would pturn the TV on just to keep us quiet I guess, but she just turned it on, and she was lost in the house. Luckily she put channel 5, where they played Heavy Metal videos, I was maybe 5 years old, but from there I began to get a taste for Metal and as it grew, the interest in knowing more music grew. At 10 years old I had my first Iron Maiden cassette and at 12 I started seriously collecting music on cassette and vinyl. With this came the era of music exchanges with friends and some acquaintances ... as well as attending concerts ... most of the concerts included mostly Death Metal and Thrash bands. Truth be told, there weren't many exponents of Black Metal in the region. For which Orpheus and I wanted to create a new band.

Parallel to this the second era of ABADDON was coming to an end. ABADDON was a band that had several years already in the stages as an Extreme Metal band more attached to Black Metal because of their lyrics, but it was never a band with a stable lineup ... and this one that I call second era was another part of the band's life that was about to end, again left in the band were only Diatharna Thoron and Abaddon (Erratum: This paragraph refers exclusively to the band Abaddon. Printed interview erroneously lists Nympherus as part of the band.).

Coincidentally the 4 of us studied at the same faculty at the University, and that's how we tied the 2 ideas of forming a band. We started rehearsing as ABADDON, but when I realized that the band had a very different sound than ABADDON, I came with the idea of carry on as SEOL and that's how we gave birth to the new band, this was in the year '98.

As a Latin American artist based between the US and Guatemala, moving in a society like the US in which the number of bands and labels is much higher than what we have in Central America, what has been the influence of this on the production of Seol and the development of your own record label?

This has definitely helped me a lot since I have learned a lot from them. Both in the quality of tangible productions and in the production of events. I have learned to plan things a long time in advance ... my compatriots and friends have made fun or thought it was just a joke that I plan events up to 2 years in advance ... but it has worked very well for them here. And so, I follow that example... trying to make things go well or cover every last detail ... I prefer to have spare time and not deliver a mediocre job for doing things without planification.

Based on your experience in different scenes such as the North American and Central American, what can we do locally to make the underground metal movement grow stronger in our countries? Reaching levels like Colombia, Chile, México. It seems possible to me.

Well there are many factors that could be solved in the short term and others that could take years. I think we should change the concept we have of how to get tangible music ... I am against the bands that (in a positive way) record music and get very excited... the studio gives them the final tracks on a CD or a USB or whatever and the next day they are already producing nonsensical productions... born of the excitement. It is sad to know how much time and money they have invested in the recordings to finally produce copied CD-Rs or homemade cassettes. This is fine for demos or promotionals, but not to be released as a final product. Where am I going with this? Some people bought the CD or Cassette and days or weeks later that work will be thrown away and undervalued because in the end it is a work that visually does not generate interest for a long time. So they may say... "People don't support us... they don't buy our music... they prefer the foreign stuff"... etc. etc. We must wake up! In our countries it is difficult to get money and when you save some and you have the option of buying a record, when the price of local productions is very close to foreign albums with a luxury PRO production... you don't think much about which one to buy. Another thing... the bands start selling copies of their material and the first thing they do is keep that money for themselves not for the band... they don't save it for their next production with better quality... then the cicle starts over... Again, it will be difficult to save money for a new production and the result will be the same... when the final tracks are delivered, there is no money to invest in quality final work... This situation is sad because there is good music that has been forgotten. It sits in some corner of someone's house, full of dust or with other CDs... cassettes covering it.


Full interview was published in English and Spanish in Metal Extremista Vol. I, August 2020.