(Editor’s note: Originating from Brazil, Arken has found a new home in Luxembourg)
When and where did Arken come into existence and what is the story/concept behind it?
Arken was born in 2015, after the split of my previous band. I felt the need of taking more action as a songwriter, I got the band together and we started working on scratches of songs from the late 90s, which I had stored, and after two years we finally had enough material to record a full length album. We recorded a self entitled EP with four songs, released in august 2018. The EP had great acceptance by the underground media and the fan base started to grow from that point on. In 2019 we had the Arken Opening Tour, playing songs from the EP and new songs as well. The tour hit the countryside cities of São Paulo, ending in a major festival called Metal Stock, in Botucatu city. In 2020 we released the single Hope, for the Roadie Metal 6 Years Heavy compilation.
The concept of the songs are about modern life as well as literature and cinema works that caused some sort of impact and triggered the motivation to write about it.
The name of the band was inspired by J. R. R. Tolkein’s book “The Hobbit ”, which tells the story of a quest that has in its center the Arkenstone. The song Arken is about Thorin Oakenshield greed and desire for the jewel.
Which are the albums and the bands that have influenced you the most during your musical growth?
I have to say, without a doubt, Iron Maiden. Their entire discography is a key influence to my style of writing songs. Other than Maiden, I could also name several bands from the nwobhm, like Tytan, Dark Star, Bitches Sin, Crucifixion, etc. Dio’s Dream Evil and Helloween’s Andy Deris records also have a great musical influence on me.
Is there a specific country or region that the band would like to perform at?
Definitely Europe. With the recent change from São Paulo to Luxembourg, now the band is based in the heart of Europe and has access to a variety of worldly famous venues and festivals, which were the goal all along. We also have plans to hit the USA and Japan as soon as we can.
What´s the songwriting process? How do you usually come up with your ideas?
The inspiration usually comes at bed time, during dreams… So I get up and write everything down in order to not forget anything. In the next morning, I start to develop the ideas into themes and then into actual songs. The first riffs are usually more linked to inspirations that come from life situations, emotions, films and books. After that there is the technical process of assembling ideas into structured songs. As a composer ever since, I rarely discard an idea, even when I don’t use it right away, I keep them so I have a lot of material stored that I use to arrange new compositions.
How has the whole situation with the pandemic affected your creativity and mindset?
The pandemic had a huge impact, because we were in the final stage of recording and preparing a South american tour to support the full length album. In order to keep our fans, family, friends and ourselves safe, we decided to focus on writing new material. At the same time, we had enough time to rethink plans and decide to move on to changing the band location. It felt the right moment to do it. As a result, we had an increase in compositions, so there is a lot of material to work on for the next two albuns.
Who would you most like to collaborate with?
I would love to collaborate with local bands, get to know the Luxembourgish metal scene and build partnerships to thrive here in Luxembourg and expand to our neighbours.
What’s next for you?
We are making final adjustments for the release of the first full length, yet for this year, and preparing the tour of 2022. We are very excited to be able to show all the work we are on and have a great time onstage again, specially to new audiences. It will be an awesome experience.
I would like to thank Earthbound Collective, I am very excited to be able to get in touch with people involved with metal in Luxembourg, I always wanted to bring the band to Europe to develop it in a thriving environment as Luxembourg offers, with its venues and festivals. I am sure that as we leave the pandemic, all bands and artists will get back on touring and have great times with fans.