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Corr Mhóna | Interview

They’re a band straight out of black metal’s history – or so it sounds like. They’ve got the moods and the feels of classic Scandinavian black metal. It was a sound they developed with real character on their last album.

Their new one promises to be equally atmospheric. With a better production and more songwriting maturity, it looks set to be captivating.

Metalireland spoke to guitarist Martin Farrow about that signature sound, their imagery, and the low key celticism of their approach.


The debut album smacked of old In The Woods and Ulver. How inspirational were those bands, and how have you developed for this release?

Both those bands as well many other bands of that ilk like 3rd and the Mortal, Anathema, My Dying Bride etc. are important for us. Between the 4 or us we have quite a range of musical inspiration, could be anything from the above mentioned bands to Daft Punk to Rotten Sound to Dead Can Dance to 80s cheese.Basically any music that moves us in some way can be inspiring. I think for this recording we have improved as writers and as a result we have developed our own sound a bit more.

Your tracks ‘Eachtra’ and ‘Mac Tire’ had a really naturalist feel – samples of birds, for example, which I see you’ve even incorporated into your artwork this time. What is it youre trying to evoke?

Nature is a strong image for us, especially the duality of it and we use this to illustrate our music. Corr Mhóna means heron in Irish and translates directly as “the twisted thing of the bog”. Herons are quite graceful at times epically in flight or when standing on one leg waiting, but they are also ungainly and savage, swallowing fish whole, taking the eye from a lamb or when they are “singing”. This juxtaposition is a nice image for music as it allows us to move in any direction we want.

Irish language is rare enough in metal lyrics, even in Irish metal. Do you think its an aid to the atmosphere? Is there a possibility that some people might find it a turn-off?

Definitely I think the Irish language is an aid to atmosphere, the language is quite poetic in syntax and structure, phrases run together in a way that just doesn’t work in English. There are siollaí garbha(hard) and siollaí míne(soft) syllables in Irish that lend themselves well to heavy and quiet parts. Obviously not a lot of people speak Irish so there is that esoteric quality, but that’s not really what we are going for.

It is not our aim to be secretive or elitist. We have English translations to all our lyrics, with the hope that people can read along and get a deeper sense of the music. With regards people finding Irish a turn off, I’m sure some do but that’s not really a concern for us, if hearing a different language is a turn off for someone then Corr Mhóna probably isn’t for them.

It was obvious last time round that you were trying for a quality clean vocal, but the production didn’t do it any favours. Is that still the way you’re going and how have you addressed that?

Yeah we suffered a lot at the hands of the production from our last effort.

It was our first time recording in a studio and we didn’t really know what we were doing. Having quality clean vocals and quality vocals in general is definitely the way we are still going.

We try to have diversity in the vocal department, which allows us to paint with a few more colours and keeps things interesting. We invested a lot of time into getting a better production for this album and I think it has paid off.

‘Dair’ has several different guitar sounds and moods that remind heavily of old Enslaved and Burzum at times. Is there something about the Nordic lands that was calling you during the songwriting process?

I don’t think there was anything in particular about the Nordic lands that was calling us.We can identify with a lot bands form Scandinavia like At the Gates, Dissection, and Eucharist etc.

Some of the material on “Dair” is quite old but seems fresher now that it is finally in place with other newer parts. We do try to create an atmosphere in our songs, like Burzum and Enslaved did, but I think it is a different atmosphere, maybe a more hopeful one.

What’s on the horizon for you at the moment – what are your plans for the release?

There is an album launch in Mr Bradleys, Cork on Oct 4th with a few more gigs around the country to follow. Hopefully we can get to play a few gigs abroad also. We will obviously be pushing the new album as much as we can now, both at home and abroad, through social media etc. Maybe we can get another recording out within a year of this one which would be great.

Interview by Earl Grey ::: 28/09/14

  1. Looking forward to hearing the album. The samples I’ve heard sound very promising.

  2. Cant wait to get my hands on this. Their demo is one of my favourite released by any Irish band.

  3. Great band

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