Interview with Kim Carlsson

(ex Lifelover, Hypothermia, Kall)

Hello Kim! Very nice to have you amongst us ! thank you again for this interview J  How have you been lately ?

I’m glad to be. It has been very busy with recording albums with my solo project Consider Suicide at two different locations and countries followed by vocal recordings for the second album of Kall and concerts in Prague and London with Hypothermia before and after exhibitions in Mexico and guest vocals for Black Hate. I could say that not really having a break for those five months that have kept pushing me forward and around the world, has to some extent drained me, but also fueled me to wake to another half of this year, ignite the embers, and burn anew.

How did Hypothermia changed since (2005)Veins until Kaffe& Blod II? And what can you tell us about the latest one?

It was at the end of 2004 that the first stage of immersion and evolution of ritualistic meditation started with the first SFAMT demo, which was composed after Veins, but the atmosphere required to record the next releases was the countryside which we didn’t have access to until the following summer. So it made more sense to get into that special trance that minimalistic chords create, along with slowing down most songs to half the speed gave them a more powerful feeling and intense atmosphere. That is a path we have kept following since then, so I would rather call it evolve than change when it comes how the releases are composed, while the only change has been in the members chosen to channel these sounds into recordings that goes beyond a guitar and drums. I have since a decade wanted to take Hypothermia to a place closer to what the sounds in my mind are as I wander through the woods. And to manage all those different nuances it requires the right place for recording and the right people to manifest something that to me is closer to minimalistic classical music. Our orchestra only happens to be using different instruments than a traditional ensemble, because we could never replicate the force of what they are doing and that has never been the intention. My goal is to change the definition of genres which is only possible by creating our own. Kaffe & Blod II is the sonic link between the albums Svartkonst and Svartkonst II: Månvals which currently is being completed for a release date to be revealed. It incorporates subtle bass and nuanced violins. Something that is channeled in full force on the next album, further enforced by being manifested at a location where we have charged the area with rituals for ten years, its power can be felt immensely through these recordings, and be used as tools for empowerment and transformation.

Why did you choose to write the lyrics in Swedish? Most of the bands do create their stuff in English. Do you think a language which is not your ‘mother language’ would change the whole meaning of the lyrics?

I get all my inspiration from nature in its endless shapes. Language is a factor that gets chosen with intent to what will be the most powerful way to manifest a concept of a place and its atmosphere. Many of my wanderings are places of vast importance for me and it is often a place and a feeling that decides the name of the conceptual album or lyric. Forests and soil has many languages. My duty is to channel this as clearly as possible. So the name will as mentioned be based on what will serve the purpose the most. The meaning does not change with different language, but the melody does, and for that reason it is often natural to use Swedish. But I have some lyrics and albums in other languages too yet to be recorded.

All of your projects are very distinguishable and unique. Who are your biggest influences when it comes to music?

The force that guides me through the unknown and teaches me its paths. The moon and heather.

In my opinion you are an artist in all the forms. Following your work for long time, made me notice your great but at the same time out of this world paintings. How do you create them? Do you have a source of inspiration or is just the inner self who guides your hand on canvas?

Creating is as important as breathing to me, there are no sacrifices I have not made to do the things that I am doing. It is this affinity for emptiness and solitude. The connection to nature and the night. These are the forces that guides me, through different techniques of blending different liquids in different orders create different results through chemical reactions that are the foundation for how I paint. Most times, like when sitting down with an instrument after a wandering, I have a concept that I strive to recreate by either using different plants and branches or my hands, or my hair or bones that have found their way to me. I clear out a whole room and surround myself with a circle, square or rectangle of papers, incense, candles, plants, bones and different vessels that holds different blends of liquids that are chosen for the series of paintings. Often different shades of red or green or purple, together with plant based milk, blood let through meditation, wines that represents a place and sometimes water collected from ponds, lakes or rivers that are important to me, or when possible rain or snow. Sometimes ashes from different wood are used, and if I’m not satisfied with a painting I will burn it and in turn use its ashes in another painting. I haven’t painted on canvas for over a decade with few experimental exceptions, so I primarily use heavyweight textured papers that can stand a lot of matter. But I’m not against exploring canvases in the future if someone commissions a work of art from me.

Your scars have their own stories or it was only about the show and to create a dark atmosphere?

It has never been about a show and I can count on one hand the amount of concerts which has involved any form of bloodletting, which otherwise is and always has been a very private matter and extension of the meditation. It’s like opening a door to a place beyond yourself, that is similar to a psychedelic trip. Descend matter and ascend mind. To me there is neither darkness or light connected to it, it’s something in a realm of and by itself.

Hypothermia as a band name and as a band is quite over-whelming and has a sense of finality to it. How did it came the idea giving this name to your band?

I have always had an intimate relationship to the seasons in nature and how they affect body and mind. In my younger years winter always held a powerful force of transformation. Destruction and rebirth. There was a concept in the back of my mind for several years that I had started composing material for but didn’t yet have a name. But I was given this name from becoming unconscious and experiencing myself through a to others possibly lethal overdose of alcohol I was hospitalized with hypothermia and alcohol poisoning. Since then I learned that I had to sacrifice and leave parts of the self and this world behind to purely receive the sounds that have become the trademark of Hypothermia as a band.

Recently Kall signed with Prophecy. What can you tell us about this collaboration?

We have known them for many years now and they expressed interest when we started working on our second album around three years ago, and it was from this point and onwards that we started the process of finding a way to work together and release the next album that we are currently putting the last finishing touches to before it gets sent off for mixing and mastering.

I see you as a loner, or more as an introvert. If I ‘m mistaken please correct me but what can you tell us about live appearances? Do you like to be surrounded by a large public or rather by a small one who is there strictly to support you and your music ?

All the time I spend alone enables me to be more calm and relaxed in social situations like concerts where we usually handle our own merch and need to be prepared for anything. We are not of the size that we get a big backstage or dressing room, so when we travel we are prepared to be a bit more extroverted and welcoming to our supporters that gets our shirts and records. It depends on the venue and event just as much as the larger or smaller crowd. We have had very varied experiences both at festivals and concerts concerning if people are there to see us or not, or in some cases people who genuinely support both us and the event no matter if it’s just one or two more bands or a festival line-up. As long as the atmosphere is good at the event that will help the spectator and listener to get into our ritual and levitate with us.

For someone that has never heard you bands yet but listens to metal of the dark nature, how would you describe what your music sounds like?

I usually tell them to imagine if the forest would make music how would it sound if that music was talking to them and through them. To think how pianos, violins, cello, horns and flutes would sound through a guitar in slow-motion. As an echo of the void through the trees in the woods.

To wind things down, what music are you currently listening to? Anything new you would recommend?

It depends on what I’m doing. I prefer to not listen to anything when I’m by myself, because I appreciate silence a lot and it’s very important for me and my creativity. If I paint and want something atmospheric I have mostly put on Demen or Claire M Singer. Two women who makes music that is pure magic. When I got my most recent tattoos I felt like a different mood so we listened to Drab Majesty and Bölzer then.

Thank you again for your words and for your time! Anything you would like to add for our readers?

You are very welcome. As we are trying to bring Hypothermia to Romania I would like to remind the readers that it will be the first time that we are performing in Romania after trying for over ten years to come and perform concerts for them. So, if there are the least bit interested in witnessing our ceremony and be a part of the ritual they really should come because it might take a long time until we return! If they feel that any of the towns are too far away then please don’t hesitate to reach out and contact us and our organizers about what venues and cities we can perform in. If they don’t do it there is a big chance that no one else will either. And to all that are waiting for our next album it’s not far away and will be worth the wait! Embrace emptiness!

Photocredits to Dennis FL.


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