WHITE VOID interview online. New album out on March 12th, 2021.

I spoke with LARS NEDLAND of WHITE VOID (also of BORKNEGAR and SOLEFALD) about the WHITE VOID album being released March 12th. A great insight into the ideas behind this band and how lockdown sped things along while other things were on hold. Also, hear him tell a story relating to a ‘Vodka sauna’.

MAL-
Thanks for calling
LARS-
My pleasure. 
MAL-
I was listening to the album last night. It's very interesting. 
LARS-
Thank you very much. 
MAL-
Where did this all come from? Now, you're from quite diverse areas of the musical spectrum and we've come out with a project like this. How did it form and how long have you known these guys and where did the ideas come from? 
LARS-
Well, I was born in the 70s so I grew up with both the Rock from the 70s and the New Wave from the 80s. So that's where the inspiration came from. And the band itself, it kind of started with some songs I'd written that didn't really fit into any of my other bands. You know, I play in BORKNEGAR, which is more like Progressive Black Metalish music and I play in a different band called SOLEFALD, which is like more avant-garde, crazy stuff and these songs didn't really fit in any of those categories. So I sat down and I tried to find out, okay, what's the common denominator here? And I found out well, it's the 70s, you know base to all of it and the sort of New Wave 80sish way of constructing the vocals, the vocal lines. So I wrote them on music in that vein and I found out I need to do something proper with this. So I started searching for the guys that would fit into my idea of what this was supposed to sound like, you know as a band. I didn't want to form this as a metal band per se. I wanted it to have more of a rock approach. So that's how the other guys came into this, they came from different genres than the musicians that I usually work with. And before you knew it we recorded an album and we'd signed the record deal and well, here we are.
MAL-
The part of the world that you're from seems to be the part of the world that isn't afraid to really go sideways if you know what I mean, if that makes sense. 
LARS-
Yeah, it does I mean but we even did that within the genre within the sideways genre to begin with, when I sort of started releasing albums back in the mid 90s, we were connected to the Black Metal movement with with SOLEFALD. And what we did was we recorded a quote unquote Black Metal album with handclaps and tambourines some, you know mouth parts and stuff like that. So from the get-go we were kind of crossing the cross stream so to speak so to me, you know, something like this, something a bit I guess unexpected if you know what I've done before it's you know, it's business as usual in a way. I've done this before in that respect. 
MAL-
It's all good. I love it. Tell us about some of the songs on here. As I mentioned, I was listening to it last night and I didn't have this in front of me. It was on the table and many times I found myself glancing over towards the phone checking song titles for starters, 'The Fucking Violence Of Love' tell us about that one.
LARS-
Yeah, well, it's kind of hard to tell something about a single song because they're all connected. You know, it's 
MAL-
Tell us about the connection between them on the album then.
LARS-
The basic concept of the album. It's based on absurdism, which is a philosophical direction worked out by Albert Camus and I've been preoccupied with Philosophy for many years and the last like four or five years. I've read a lot about existentialism absurdism and nihillism, which are all connected in their starting points. They all start with the same problem, which is the problem of the Absurd. It's the discrepancy between what we need when it comes to sense and direction in life as human beings, and what the cold brutal Universe serves us when it comes to sense of direction, which is nothing, you know, the Universe goes. 'There you go you exist' and you go, 'okay, fine. What am I supposed to do?' Universe goes, 'I don't know'. 'Can you point me in some direction?' 'Nah', so all of these philosophies they try to bridge that gap in a way between what we need and what the universe serves us, so all the lyrics for this album were written as a sort of stream of Consciousness realization of what that means with a lot of other things thrown in because I tried to write this as a stream of Consciousness, you know the way that the brain works with with these matters, that the brain doesn't work in a straight line, you know, it works haphazardly. So you'll think about one thing and then you'll pull something into that thought because it reminds you of something and that gets entangled into the whole thing. And so I mean, it's all haphazard, you know and 'The Fucking Violence Of Love' is the point in the realization where you kind of realize that you can't escape the fact that your own existence is absurd but you can sort of counter it by accepting it and there's a very fine parallel to that one comes to your very like mundane love life if you like someone if you have a special relationship with someone and that person breaks up with you, you're sort of put into the same kind of situation, you know, you can't do anything about that. But what you can do is you can accept it ,and you know that that's the easy mundane thing to talk about these matters in you know, okay, what you do when there's something in your life that you can't really do anything about. Well, you accept it. You rise above it and you move on and that's the parallel because on a great Cosmic scale, on an existential scale, it's the same thing you have to do with the fact that everything is absurd and you don't matter and I don't matter. Okay, how do we handle that? Well, we accept it and we rise above it and that gives us the freedom to enjoy all the other things.
MAL-
How was this album recorded and what part did isolation/lockdown play in it?
LARS-
Well, it was recorded in kind of in bits and pieces. That's the good thing about the quality of recording equipment that you can actually buy as a sort of normal person these days, you can get good production in your home studio. So it was recorded in various home studios and most of it was recorded before the pandemic hit. However, what happened when the pandemic hit was I was supposed to go on a pretty long tour with the BORKNEGAR last year to the US and Canada, first date was supposed to be the 19th of March. So everything was aorund the 12..
MAL-
That's the universe going, 'Fuck you'.
LARS-
Universe going. 'There you go. You don't matter, everything's absurd' right now that meant I had like five weeks on my hands with nothing planned and our guitarist in BORKNEGAR who's also incidentally the producer of WHITE VOID. He owns the studio that we mix and master everything in. I just sat down with him, and I said, 'okay, this is a bummer, you know, the whole tour gone to shit. We need something positive in our lives. Why don't we sit down and start mixing the WHITE VOID album?' So pandemic actually sped up the process with WHITE VOID, even though we didn't record the album during the pandemic. We finished it during the pandemic and everything else also happened, you know as the pandemic was going on. So this has been a constant positive thing in my life throughout the pandemic.
MAL-
In all the interviews I do I've heard a lot of stories like that where it's really, you know, stopped one thing but enabled people to have all the time to do this other thing, generally, you know for want of a better word side projects, but now they've got the time and they knuckle down and do it. 
LARS-
And it's like you have two choices in way. I mean you can sit down and mope and just drink beer and, you know drown your misery like that or you can just try and focus on something else, you know, get something positive creative projects going and have a beer afterwards.
MAL-
Wait till it's all done and then do it exactly right. So this album is coming out very soon within the next couple of days I believe, and then what? What happens then? What's happening for you in the part of the world where you are? What can you do? 
LARS-
We're having a full lockdown as it is now again, no shops are open, stay home all of that, but they've started the vaccination though. So things are moving forward and they say that probably within June things are going to get a bit better and they're going to open up.
Live playing. I don't think there will be a whole lot of concerts until well into Autumn. For WHITE VOID's parts. I think we just signed with a pretty big booking agency and they're saying that we should probably just start looking at 2022. So hopefully maybe festival or two late in the year, but as touring goes, yeah, probably next year. It's also one of the problems is that even if everything opened up tomorrow, it would be really hard to get any slots because everything that was supposed to happen last year is now supposed to happen this year and soon half of this year is gone as well. So everything's just been pushed. So all the festivals are full, all the tours are full, everything's pre-booked, you know, so yeah. We'll see mmm, I'm hatching an evil plan to find a good way of getting on the road sooner rather than later.
MAL-
Just on a side note did you know, Mr. Petrov from ENTOMBED?
LARS-
No, not personally. I met him like two or three times just like briefly on festivals through friends. I mean, lovely guy, just exchanged a few words, but I didn't really I didn't know him. However, I had a very close relation to ENTOMBED's early albums. I mean 'Clandestine' is one of my top three death metal albums of all time. So yeah, it's really sad to hear about his his death. Cancer is, cancer is a fucking cunt. 
MAL-
What else did you want to chat about Lars? 
LARS-
Well, if we can't play Live let's just make another album then.
MAL-
That's a good idea. When do you start? 
LARS-
Well, I have most of the songs written already for the next one. 
MAL-
For the next WHITE VOID or BORKNEGAR? 
LARS-
Yeah for the next WHITE VOID. I also have a lot of lots of songs from this for the next BORKNEGAR. So probably starting well the initial recording after the summer. I guess with BORKNEGAR, but I'm thinking why wait when it comes to WHITE VOID? If I've got the songs and we've got this thing rolling, if we can't go out on the road. It's just make another one and yeah see where that takes us.
MAL-
Sounds like a good idea.
LARS-
Yes.
MAL-
Just a little bit off track here. What's the funniest thing that's happened on tour with any band that you've been associated with? What's the funniest memory that just pops in your mind?
LARS-
Funniest? I think it must have been with BORKNEGAR in Lithuania back in like 2001 and we after a gig we did a vodka sauna. I don't know if you've done a vodka sauna, but they warm up these rocks inside the sauna. It's an old-fashioned sauna right. Yeah, so do they have they have fire and they warm up these rocks and its really fucking hot and they don't pour water on the stones. They put vodka on the stones. So you're breathing the alcohol and our guitarist at the time he just fell over after five minutes, he just got drunk out of his head from just sitting there and breathing, so we had to carry him out of the sauna and throw into a pool of very cold water to his very huge shock as he woke up when he hit the water. So yeah, that was kind of funny. 
MAL-
Wow, I'm just trying to visualize that yeah. 
LARS-
Yeah, vodka sauna, not for the faint of heart?
MAL-
Thanks for joining us, man. All the very best with the very very interesting and, it's a bit out of my realm and it really attacked by head. It was good. 
LARS-
Thank you very much. I appreciate it. And thank you for having me on your show. 
MAL-
Hey, no worries. Good luck with everything over there. It sounds like you're locked down a lot worse than we are, so good luck with it all, hope you come out the other side all good and get back into it as soon as you can.
LARS-
Thank you very much. 
MAL-
Thanks mate. You have a great day.

​WHITE VOID is absence of direction and sense in life. It’s a description of the fundamental disharmony between the individual's search for meaning and the meaninglessness of the universe.
Eclectic hard rockers White Void are a curious bunch. Forged in the space between the occult rock of the seventies, the no-excuses-hard rock of the eighties and the British New Wave movement, they balance on the event horizon that separates old from new. Aggression from melody. Dream from drive.
Add to that the fact that the bandmembers of White Void have their backgrounds in Norwegian black metal, chiptune electronica, pop music and blues, and you’ll see why “Anti” is an album that’s hard to pin down. It’s darkly melodic, it’s driven, and it’s infused with earworms, hooks and licks. Boasting a shameless attitude, though, it comes forth as deeply true to the core of our shared hard rock heritage.
In the center of White Void stands Lars Are Nedland, long time member of Borknagar and Solefald. Leading a team of musicians including Tobias Solbakk of Ihsahn fame, electronica staple Vegard Kummen and blues rock virtuoso Eivind Marum, he navigates the waters of hard rock riffs, new wave harmonies and blues rock solos with determination and elegance.
Still, “Anti” probably doesn't sound like you think. It’s an album riddled with contrasts and references, musically as well as philosophically. The concept is based on Albert Camus’ Absurdism and deals with how you cope with an existence that is in its core absurd. Musically it draws on the past while forging towards the future. And the result? Well, enter the Void to find out!