• Frost Tears est un jeune groupe taïwanais qui mélange des genres aussi diversifiés que le métal gothique, le métal symphonique et le power métal tout en s’inspirant aussi de chansons religieuses, de différentes comédies musicales sur Broadway, de l’opéra chinois et de plusieurs éléments de la musique traditionnelle chinoise et taïwanaise comme l’emploi du guqin, un instrument à cordes pincées de la famille des cithares qui se trouve sur la liste représentative du patrimoine culturel immatériel de l’humanité de l’UNESCO. Fondé dans la capitale de l’île à Taipei en 2010, le groupe a sorti deux maxis et se prépare en ce moment pour la sortie de son tout premier album qui est prévu pour 2014. Après la montée en popularité internationale du groupe de métal symphonique taïwanais Seraphim et du groupe de black métal symphonique Chthonic, Frost Tears a tout ce qu’il faut pour devenir une autre exportation à succès de la République de Chine. Pour découvrir davantage ce groupe prometteur, j’ai décidé de faire une entrevue avec eux et j’ai pu faire la connaissance de jeunes artistes très ambitieux, illuminés et optimistes.

    Griffonnier: «Bonjour et merci d’accepter cette belle occasion d’entrevue. Pourriez-vous vous introduire brièvement à nos lecteurs et nous parler des origines de votre groupe?»

    Frost Tears: «Notre guitariste Taku et le claviériste Yu se sont rencontrés dans le groupe d’un ami qui jouait des reprises de power metal. Ils ont quitté le groupe pour écrire leurs propres chansons et ils ont fait la connaissance de Len. Elle avait étudié le chant classique pendant plusieurs années et a même gradué académiquement dans ce domaine. Le trio a ensuite rapidement recruté le guitariste Lee du groupe Silent Hell et la bassiste Peggy du groupe Roughhousen. Frost Tears ont uni les forces respectives de chaque musicien en 2010. Après quelques changements, notre groupe est aujourd’hui composé de la chanteuse Len, du claviériste Yu, du batteur Van qui joue aussi pour Seraphim, du guitariste Ken qui joue normalement pour R’aie XIII et du bassiste Mone du groupe Sonar. Nous nous connaissons depuis longtemps maintenant et comprenons bien nos styles musicaux individuels. Nous sommes confiants de rester ensemble pour longtemps.»

    Le métal occidental rencontre les instruments folkloriques et l’opéra chinois

    Griffonnier: «Comment est-ce que vous décriviez votre groupe et comment est-ce qu’il fonctionne? Quelles sont vos inspirations conceptuelles et musicales?»

    Frost Tears: «Vu que nous avons une chanteuse classique, un claviériste inspire de la musique classique et un guitariste qui adore les genres du power et speed metal, notre style commun se compare au métal gothique et symphonique. Notre ancien batteur Ibara nous a aussi amené une sonorité plus progressive. Nous sommes inspirés de plusieurs groupes de métal occidentaux comme Dream Theater, Epica, Helloween, Lacrimosa, Nightwish, Rhapsody Of Fire, Tarja et Within Temptation. Pourtant, nous écoutons aussi Abba et sommes inspirés de plusieurs comédies musicales du Broadway. Le groupe Seraphim nous a inspiré pour son côté avant-gardiste et le groupe Chthonic encourage les groupes taïwanais à ajouter l’utilisation d’instruments traditionnels à leur son. C’est pour ça que nous prévoyons utiliser des guqins et nous inspirer de la musique d’opéra chinois. Notre musique est très ouverte et nos processus de composition et d’enregistrement peuvent varier fréquemment. Nous tentons de créer notre propre style à nous au lieu d’assimiler nos créations à un genre en particulier. C’est pour cela que nous avons enregistrés de courts maxis avec quatre chansons sur un même sujet plutôt que de sortir un album entier jusqu’à date. Après quelques expérimentations sur nos deux maxis, nous écrivons nos chansons en mandarin maintenant. Nous tentons de changer les méthodes de prononciation de cette langue car son grand désavantage est qu’elle n’a que peu de rimes. Bien sûr, nous aimerions bien écrire des paroles en anglais, en mandarin et même en japonais un jour si cela s’avère être possible.»

    À l’inverse des clichés de la scène gothique

    Griffonnier: «Vous avez également tenté une reprise de la chanson chrétienne «Amazing Grace». Comment est-ce que c’est arrivé?»

    Frost Tears: «Nous avons fait cette reprise car nous aimerions exprimer notre reconnaissance pour tout ce qui se passe autour de nous. Il y a beaucoup de cœur dans cette chanson et nous l’avons enregistrée peu de temps avant la date que les prédictions mayas avaient ciblé pour la fin du monde. Cela n’a donc pas de raisons religieuses. Taiwan est un pays multi-religieux qui respecte les croyances de tous. Yu est par exemple baptisé et vient d’une famille catholique. Taku et Len ont grandi dans des familles taoïstes. Le métal gothique nous suggère souvent des sentiments de noirceur, d’horreur et de solitude tandis qu’«Amazing Grace» fait tout à fait le contraire. Cette chanson représente nos attitudes dans la vraie vie. Nous ne faisons qu’extraire certains éléments de la musique gothique et certaines inspirations de son esthétique visuel en les appliquant à nos chansons et performances. Mais la scène gothique n’a pas d’influence sur nos paroles ou nos vraies vies.»

    L’existentialisme et les questions humanistes au ménu

    Griffonnier: «À quoi ressemblera votre premier album qui sortira en 2014?»

    Frost Tears: «Cela ressemblera un peu à notre deuxième maxi «Reminiscences», mais la musique sera plus dramatique qu’auparavant. Ce sera un mélange de métal gothique et symphonique d’un côté et de power métal mélodique de l’autre. Les genres musicaux seront encore plus diversifiés et riches comme nos propres vies. Au niveau des paroles, le sujet principal sera l’existentialisme et on touchera à des questions humanistes.»

    Griffonnier: «Cela sonne très détaillé, diversifié et philosophique et me semble être prometteur. Pour terminer, parlez-nous un peu de la scène musicale taïwanaise.»

    Frost Tears: «Durant les années 1990, la musique rock et métal taïwanaise a beaucoup été influencée par des groupes américains. L’influence européenne est venue plus tard et s’est plus ressentie dans la musique pop avec les succès du groupe Mayday. Le genre du britpop est encore un des plus populaires de notre pays. Ce n’est qu’avec le succès de Chthonic que de plus en plus de groupes de death métal mélodique ont émergé. Les groupes de rock et de métal à chant féminin ont connu une forte croissance au courant des dernières années. La culture gothique n’est pas la nôtre et nous la trouvons plutôt abstraite, fantastique et nostalgique. C’est plus au niveau de l’atmosphère de la musique que nous pouvons faire des comparaisons avec la culture diversifiée et l’histoire bouleversée de notre propre pays. Nous essayons d’imiter la scène gothique tout en tentant d’y ajouter une touche typiquement taïwanaise au niveau de la culture. Nous aimerions un jour avoir un propre style de musique gothique taïwanaise. Si ce style vous intéresse, je vous recommande d’écouter les groupes Crescent Lament, Renascimento et Seraphim. Au niveau des concerts, nous jouons dans des petites salles de spectacle. Nous participons aussi aux festivals. Il y a le «Spring Scream Festival» en avril, le «Ho-Hai-Yan Gongliao Rock Festival» en juillet et le «Taoyuan Hakka Music Festival» au mois d’août à chaque année qui sont les festivals les plus importants. Nous n’avons pas encore joué à l’extérieur du pays, mais nous espérons un jour faire partie du «Wacken Open Air Festival» en Allemagne et du «Metal Female Voices Fest» en Belgique.»

    Griffonnier: «Merci beaucoup pour cette entrevue très informative et sympathique. Est-ce que vous voulez dire quelques phrases pour terminer?»

    Frost Tears: «La musique enrichit nos vies. Elle remplace la langue pour exprimer nos sentiments. Elle est même au-delà de la barrière des langues.»

     

    http://www.facebook.com/frosttears 

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  • Frost Tears (or: 冰霜之淚is a promising young Gothic Metal band from the metal developping country Taiwan. Formed back in 2010, the diversified female fronted band released two colourful EPs so far and participated in several concerts and festivals on their beautiful island. This band has though more ambitious plans and is preparing its first full length record for the next year. After the successes of Chthonic and Seraphim, they have everything the need to become the next big thing from the increasing Taiwanese Metal scene. I've contacted the band and conducted a very detailed and interesting interview over the last months. If you're intrigued by the band, read on to find out more about them!

    Frost Tears from Taipei, Taiwan

    Sebastian Kluth: Hello and thank you a lot for taking some of your precious time for this interview occasion. Frost Tears is a young and promising Gothic Metal band from Taipei, Taiwan that is around since 2010. How did you come together?

    FROST TEARS: Taku (Japanese pronunciation, and it means burning in Chinese), the guitarist, and Yu (Japanese pronunciation, and it means rain in Chinese), the keyboarder, got to know each other in a Power Metal cover band which was started by a friend. In order to write songs by themselves, Taku and Yu left that cover band and began piecing together a new band. In the meantime, they met Len (Japanese pronunciation, translated from her Chinese name), who has learnt classic vocals for years and majored in “Performing Arts”. The original members were recruited in a short period of time, including Lee of SILENT HELL and Peggy of ROUGHHAUSEN. FROST TEARS combines each member’s unique strengths and formed in 2010. After a few replacements, our current band members 2013 are: Len on the lead vocals, Van of SERAPHIM fame on drums, Yu on the synthesizers, Taku who has already been involved in MORPHEUS and Ken who has been with R’AIE XIII on guitars and finally Mone of SONAR fame on the bass guitar. Now our members have known each other for a long time, and we understand our individual musical styles very well. We are confident that we’ll keep a long-term relationship and keep on making good music in the future.

    Frost Tears as of July 2013

    Sebastian Kluth: Tell us a little bit more about your music. How would you actually describe it and how works your song writing process? Which artists or bands inspire your lyrical and musical direction? What are your favorite bands and albums?

    FROST TEARS: In the first place, we hope each member brings their talents to make our own music we love. Since we get a very good female classical singer, a keyboardist from a classical music clan, and a guitarist who is really good at Speed/Power Metal, our music spontaneously shifts to Gothic/Symphonic Metal. Our former drummer, Ibara (Japanese pronunciation, and it means “thorn” in Chinese) also brought us a more progressive sound. FROST TEARS is influenced by many bands and artists such as HELLOWEEN, STRATOVARIUS, RHAPSODY OF FIRE, NIGHTWISH, WITHIN TEMPTATION, LACRIMOSA, DREAM THEATER, EPICA, TARJA, even ABBA and many famous Broadway musicals. However, SERAPHIM, the metal band who was the first into international markets, gave us the confidence to keep on. SERAPHIM was an avant-garde ideal among masculine metal bands in Taiwan. CHTHONIC, another famous metal band from Taiwan, adds Erhu to their musical elements, and encourages bands in Taiwan to add traditional elements to their music. This is the reason that we consider to adopt Guqin and Chinese Opera in our music. Because we’d like to open our music to all possibilities and keep the varieties of the melody when we started the band, we change our process and style all the time while we are composing songs. Another advantage of varieties keeping is that it brings our members to cooperate in different ways in order to create the character of FROST TEARS. So far, the styles of our songs are different. We try to compose all kinds of music, and that’s how we get our musical creations featured. We’re writing new songs and planning to release a full new album in 2014. Len writes lyrics and composes melodies; Taku and Yu are responsible for musical architecture and styles while Mone and Van make our gigs more dramatically by their great musical techniques.

    Sebastian Kluth: You have released a total of two EPs in 2011 and in 2012. Could you describe them? What do they sound like and is there some sort of evolution between both of them? What are your lyrics about and in which language do you prefer composing your lyrics?

    FROST TEARS: As we talked before, when we’re writing songs, we used to consider our members’ talents and preferences. These two EPs are in experimental stage and phase in many unusual methods while writing songs. We focus on creating self-style as “FROST TEARS” instead of conforming our songs to some kind of music style. Therefore, these two EPs blended kinds of musical styles such as Gothic, Symphony, Power, Speed and Folk Metal as well as Chinese opera influences. After an experimental stage, we are now writing our lyrics in Mandarin. We are familiar with Mandarin, so we’re trying to adopt Chinese Opera to increase dramatic tension. We are also changing pronounciation methods to make up the disadvantage of Mandarin that lacks of rhymes. Of course, we may write lyrics in English, Mandarin, and Japanese at the same time if possible.

    Sebastian Kluth: On several internet sites, one can also find your version of the Christian hymn “Amazing Grace”. How comes you decided to cover this rather unusual track? How important is Christianity for your band and its development? How comes that many bands from Taiwan are religiously inspired while Western Gothic Metal bands seem to care a lot less about this intriguing kind of spirituality?

    FROST TEARS: We covered this song because we’d like to express our gratitude for everything rather than religious reasons. Taiwan is a multi-religious country that respects everybody’s religious beliefs. For example, Yu comes from a Catholic family, and he was baptized in his childhood; Taku comes from a Taoist family, and he is a "religious investigator" and Len comes from a Taoist family as well. This song, “Amazing Grace”, attracts us because the lyrics are full of grateful heart and not because of a religious dimension of Christianity. Just before the date of the end of the world according to Mayan predictions, we chose this song to show our gratitude for everything. Gothic music always impresses us with darkness, horror and solitude while “Amazing Grace” doesn’t. We only extract Gothic music elements and visual aesthetics and then apply them to our songs and performances. It does not affect our true lives, nor did the lyrics we wrote. The cover of “Amazing Grace” shows our attitude of our real lives. Because some people say that our songs don’t fit to each other, we issued EPs with different themes. We’ll give a thought to the entire atmosphere when we write songs in the future. Let's wait and see.

    Sebastian Kluth: As far as I know you have signed a contract with the Taiwanese Magnum label. How did you get this opportunity and how does the deal help you to spread your music? Where can we purchase your music?

    FROST TEARS: Our contract with Taiwanese Magnum label is agency issuing, which means Frost Tears is still an indie band. We appreciate the opportunities and recommendations provided by our friends. FanTwn also helps us a lot. Thanks for all you guys. We're not experts in marketing. However, our priorities are making good music and wait for good opportunities. Fans may purchase our works from these platforms as below:

    Taiwanese Magnum

    http://www.magnum.com.tw/

    FanTwn

    http://fantwn.com/

    Indievox

    http://www.indievox.com/frosttears

     

    Sebastian Kluth: After two promising EPs, are you going to release a full length debut album anytime soon? What would this album eventually sound like?

    FROST TEARS: Now we’re working on it and planning to release it in the middle of 2014. Our full-length debut album would be like our second EP, “Reminiscences”. It will be more dramatic than ever. We can’t define this album with any music style we know. The theme will be existentialism and humanistic issues, and the style of the music will be changed with the lyrics. Sometimes the style will be Gothic/Symphonic Metal and sometimes it may rather be Power/Melodic Metal. The music styles will be diverse and rich, just like our lives.

    Sebastian Kluth: Apart being artists and musicians, what are you doing for a lifetime? What kind of impact do your jobs or your family lives have on your creative processes?

    FROST TEARS: We are artists and musicians, and we’re also normal employees in companies. We can’t avoid illness and death, nor do get away from the economic pressures, either. Making good music is our focus point, but not our main source of income. We care about our society and politics, and we love our families. We have different religions. And we enjoy and experience living in this true world. For us, these are founts of inspiration.

    Sebastian Kluth: You are soon going to play live with three other bands called GUNPOWDER, SONAR and ULTRA VIOLET in your country. Can you tell us something about these bands and the event itself?

    FROST TEARS: At every performance we try to take the chance to invite different bands to join the performance and to work together with us, so we can improve our bands together. This theme, “Alchemy”, intends to promote Metal music and to express our appreciation for fans’ supports by giving free tickets to those who bought our albums. We’ll keep this same style of event theme going if possible. GUN POWDER is a Power Metal/ Hard Rock band; SONAR is a Progressive Metal band while the bassist is our partner; ULTRA VIOLET is a progressive band and they pay attention to modern fashion. We had this concert together and we are also friends in private. We all often discuss about music.

    These bands’ fanpages are as below:

    ULTRA VIOLET

    https://www.facebook.com/UltraVioletTaiwan

    GUN POWDER

    https://www.facebook.com/GunPowderBand

    SONAR

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sonar-%E8%81%B2%E7%B4%8D%E6%A8%82%E5%9C%98/326151830730417

    Frost Tears and friends in concert in April 2013

    Sebastian Kluth: Do you have often occasions to play concerts or even festivals? What are the best locations and festivals in your country one should not miss out? What are your favorite concerts you have attended in your life? Have you ever played outside your country? With whom or where would you like to give a concert in the future?

    FROST TEARS: We often play concerts in small live houses. We’ve played at “Spring Scream Festival” and “Ho-Hai-Yan Gongliao Rock Festival”. We also played in “Taoyuan Hakka Music Festival” this August. Taiwan is a very beautiful island with very friendly people. “Spring Scream Festival” is held in April every year and “Ho-Hai-Yan Gongliao Rock Festival” is held every July. You shall not miss them. We haven’t had the chance to play outside Taiwan yet. We’d like to have a tour and play with great bands all around the world. We believe every band has their strengths that we could learn from. Whoever we have played with, we could have a lot of variable experiences. Our dreams are to bring Taiwanese music to the world with Taiwanese bands, and to play with good bands around the world. About the world’s top festivals, we hope we will play in Wacken Open Air Festival and Metal Female Voices Festival someday.

    Frost Tears back in March 2012

    Sebastian Kluth: Can you tell us a little bit more about Rock and Metal music in Taiwan in general?

    FROST TEARS: In the early 90s, Taiwan Rock music and Metal music were affected by America. Europe style music was rare in Taiwan. Because of the success of MAYDAY, Britpop is among the most popular musical styles in Taiwan. On the other hand, because of the success of CHTHONIC, there are also many Melodic Death Metal bands and Symphonic Black Metal bands in Taiwan. Female fronted bands began to grow in these years as well.

    Frost Tears back in April 2011

    Sebastian Kluth: What does the Gothic scene look like in your country? Can you name some favourite albums or bands?

    FROST TEARS: For Taiwanese people, Gothic is not our original culture. So Gothic is kind of yearning and fancy to us. But we can find the same scenes and atmospheres in history and our culture as comparison. We hope to add our own cultural elements to this Gothic style the best we can while yearning and imitating. We also hope to create Gothic music style that belongs to Taiwan. When we talk about this kind of music, we must recommend SERAPHIM. Besides, CRESCENT LAMENT and RENASCIMENTO are also good Taiwanese Gothic bands.

    Frost Tears in December 2010

    Sebastian Kluth: What are your plans for your musical year 2013?

    FROST TEARS: We focus on creation in 2013. Our plan is to release the first album in 2014, and begin to accelerate the career of our band.

    Sebastian Kluth: Thank you once again for this great interview occasion. The last words are yours. What would you like to tell the Gothic, Metal and Rock fans out there in the whole wide world?

    FROST TEARS: Music enriches our lives. It replaces language to express our feelings, and it even breaks the language barrier. You may not remember us after many years have passed by, but then you may not forget how you loved music in the very beginning.

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