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Interview with Sonsombre. A goth rock band which is, definitely, worth to listen to!

There is a gothic band which could give a fresh new gothic sound while using the elements of great Goth Rock Bands from late 90's. I have the pleasure to present you Sonsombre.

Sonsombre is the band/project of Brandon Pybus from Northern VA, USA. Brandon is a musician lover since he was a child and he is involved in several projects. Sonsombre is his gothic self, reflecting all his pure gothic influences, coming from some of the greatest gothic rock bands of the last 30 years. He is carefully adopting the elements he loves and the result is, in my humble opinion, absolutely emotional gothic and dark. 

There is a debut fyll-length album which proves all these and I am looking forward for Sonsombre's next steps.

Read what Brandon Pybus told us about Sonsombre's music, his own thoughts on gothic rock and scene and his plans about Sonsombre.

ES: Hi Brandon. I would like to thank you for making this interview. Really great sound and tunes, reminds me some of my favorite goth bands back in 90's and early 00's.

I would like to begin with letting you introduce yourself to the Greek audience and our readers worldwide. When did you start making music? What does inspire you? Apart Sonsombre, are there any projects/bands you are currently in?

Brandon: First of all, thank you for this opportunity to share with your readers.  I actually started playing music when I was about 10 years old.  My brother and I formed a band and played some metal and punk covers with a few originals thrown in.  I've been playing ever since and have been in several bands and projects through the years.  My inspiration has pretty much always been from dark themes, horror films, novels, dark music- you name it. I think most of your readers probably understand that you are more or less born with this inclination toward dark art forms. I am currently involved in three other projects.  I play guitar and sing in a doom band called Wytch Goat and have a couple of active black metal projects going too, although I haven't really had much time for the black metal projects of late.

ES: When did you decide to form Sonsombre? What does Sonsombre means and how did you choose the band's name?

Brandon: Well, I've loved Goth Rock for well over 20 years,  I remember as a teenager riding home with a friend that popped in Christian Death's "Only Theatre of Pain".  That record really opened my eyes! It was dark, melodic, shocking.  Everything I loved.  I've had a deep love for the genre ever since.  In 2016 I finally started recording some of my Goth Rock ideas, not really thinking it would go anywhere.  I recorded about half of "A Funeral For The Sun", then got sidetracked with other projects, moves etc.  Early in 2018 I picked it back up and recorded a few songs like Nocturnal that really gave me the old Goth Rock vibe, so I decided to release it.  I'm certainly glad I did, as the response has been very positive, which has really inspired me.

As for the name, Sonsombre is a compound of two French words Son and Sombre.  It means sad or dark sound.  It just keeps me on track with what this band is and why I started it.

ES: While Sonsombre is a new band and project, someone can clearly identify elements from legendary bands of the past like The Wake, The 69 Eyes and more. Which are your influences in writing music?

Brandon: Well you certainly named one.  The Wake is very high on my list of favorite bands.  Everything about that band is pure Goth to me, and I think it's fair to say they have inspired me greatly.  The same can be said for Nosferatu.  Their work has always been very meaningful to me.  They really have a character all their own but totally Goth, I love it.  "Calling You" for example, with it's opening riff was a tribute to their fairly distinctive style.  Apart from the obvious other influences that most Goth Rock bands share like Fields of the Nephilim and The Sisters of Mercy, which without a doubt also greatly influenced this first record, I would also say bands really guitar heavy bands like N.F.D. really stick with me as well.  And I won't deny the influence of 69 Eyes records like "Paris Kills" or "Blessed Be" on some of the tracks.  I think they really had a great sound back then.  Even though it's not really obvious in the music, I still tip my hat to Rozz Williams and Christian Death.  They got me started.  His phrasing and everything about that early material still inspires me to this day, and I still listen to "Only Theatre of Pain" very regularly after all these years. 

ES: Do you listen to new goth rock bands nowadays. Do you think they affect your sound as well?

Brandon: Absolutely I do.  Eventually all things evolve and I'm sure it's unavoidable that influence will come in, but I think that's a good thing as long as I never stray too far from the roots.

ES: Gothic Rock had a great era some years ago with great bands and releases. How do you see current gothic rock scene now? Do you feel there is still equal anticipation from the audience for new gothic stuff?

Brandon: Well, the internet has certainly changed the way it manifests, but yes, the scene seems to be alive and well.  People (myself included) still get excited when something new and great pops up.  

ES: Sonsombre is one man project. Along with the music you also write the lyrics. What does inspire you in writing the songs?

Brandon: Sonsombre is recorded as a one man project, but we now have a 3 piece band together for live shows, I can mention more about that later.  I usually get inspired by a melody that pops into my head.  Sometimes it comes with a lyric, sometimes not, but it always paints a picture in my head that brings out the lyrical concept. Sometimes it comes from something I see but more often it's just a reflection of how I'm feeling.   

ES: Tell us something for the full-length album which released earlier this year, "A Funeral for the Sun". What this release is all about? Is there something new coming up related to "A Funeral for the Sun?

Brandon: Well, this release has a few themes. There are tracks based on horror like Nocturnal or Buried.  The rest are mostly about depression, isolation, love, or religious allegory.  "A Funeral for the Sun" will be released on CD by Post-Gothic Records in January 2019 with bonus material and some re-mixes, don't want to spoil all of the surprises. 

ES: "Funeral of the Sun" was released last September. Was the process during the release difficult for you? Are you happy with the result? What was the media and fans feedback and reaction?

Brandon: It wasn't really difficult because I didn't have any expectations.  I just wanted people to hear it and maybe get the feeling they had back in the '90s when listening to the records of that era.  I was honestly very surprised and overwhelmed with the reaction.  It seems like the record did exactly what I hoped it would for a lot of people and that is very satisfying to say the least.  The response across the board has been great, and since it's release the momentum honestly seems to continue to build.  I think Post-Gothic getting in the mix certainly has helped tremendously as well in getting the word out. 

ES: What are your plans for the future? Are there any live performances scheduled? Do you have any new material coming out in the near future?

Brandon: As I mentioned earlier, we now have a band together and have dates in the works for early 2019.  We're very happy with the way the material translates live and are excited to get out there.  As far as new material, yes, the next full-length is 90% complete and is scheduled for release in the late spring of 2019.  I sincerely hope that people like this material as much as the first record.  I think the new tracks really capture a very classic Goth Rock vibe and am very excited for people to hear it. 

ES: Would you like to add anything else? Would you like to say something to Greek dark scene and to all of our readers?

Brandon: I want to thank you again for the opportunity to share a little about Sonsombre with your readers, and thank all the great people out there who have reached out to let me know what they thought of the record and shown support in so many ways.  Thank you!!  

 Thank you very much. I wish you all the best and huge success to everything you do. I hope to see you performing live soon.






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ElektroSpank FMA is an online music magazine about the darkest side of our lives.

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