De Arma – After Dark, You’re There | Progressively Melancholic
De Arma is a Gothic Rock duo from Sweden. Consisting of guitarist, vocalist, and bass player Andreas Pettersson and drummer Johan Marklund the music is phenomenal. With loads of experience under their belt, De Arma has been releasing music for a while now. They have dropped a couple of tracks to tease their upcoming EP, Nightcall. This new album has shown us hints of experimentalism and plenty of relearning with the Melancholic Rock genre.
After Dark, You’re There is truly an experience that spans a whopping 9 minutes and 16 seconds. With a slow burn progression that develops as the song progresses, After Dark, You’re There has everything you need. The guitars have an ethereal sound that immerses you fully in the song. The vocal work reminds me of such acts as Dream Theatre and oddly enough, Depeche Mode. The upbeat rhythmic drums and the melody play off of each other with such great chemistry. Moreover, the entire sonic experience is immersive and almost interactive. There’s so much to unpack with these lads.
De Arma has so much to offer the world with its music. Redefining genres and immersing listeners isn’t all they do, yet they do it so well. Keep an eye out for their upcoming EP, Nightcall. We’ve also managed to score an interview with the lads that you can read down below.
Who/What has influenced the band’s sound over the years? Oh, that’s a tricky one to explain. There have been so many inspirational elements. Life, in general, is a big one – 40 years of earthly existence cements a lot of impressions. De Arma is like a filter used to rid yourself of difficult life experiences that have left behind deep scars; hardships, loss, or any other struggle that might have come your way. I’d say our main inspiration is reflecting on how one feels in such situations. Obviously, the atmospheres created by various music and movies have also been inspirational to us.
What has been the most significant turning point for the band since you formed? That would actually be this present moment, with the release of our new EP, “Nightcall”. Seeing as how we were inactive for eight years – between 2012 and 2020 – and that both our two full-length albums were written before that time, it feels good to finally put out some songs which are fully representative of the De Arma of today. Our new EP is less metal-oriented than our previous releases and certainly more synth-driven. The latter is something we’ve wanted to experiment with for many years – in part due to our lifelong passion for the sounds of the 80s.
How have you developed your sound over time and how would you describe it to someone who hasn’t heard your music before? My roots are in extreme metal, which obviously coloured our early works. I suppose it’s only natural that parts of the musical source you originate from shine through in whatever style you embrace during your journey. A lot of the atmosphere from our early days is still present in what we do today – and will thus remain in what we do tomorrow. I’m not a big fan of putting tags on our music, but I guess we fall under the gothic rock genre. With “Nightcall”, I’ve seen genres like post-punk and darkwave mentioned but whether that’s accurate or not is not for me to say. Melancholy has always been a strong element, and perhaps a darker atmosphere.
What is the most integral part of the band? Writing music, definitely. Putting tunes to certain memories and emotions. Creating an atmosphere capable of either destruction or healing. De Arma is a therapeutic tool for us – and perhaps for some people out there who can relate to it in a similar way that we do.
How do you go about creating a song like, After Dark, You’re There? For me, writing music can often be compared to painting a picture: step by step, fragment by fragment, layer by layer. I can certainly have an idea from the beginning, but the end result usually ends up quite different. The first draft of After Dark was more in the vein of a traditional rock song; it was meant to be on our next album. After experimenting with re-arranging it to a more synth-driven piece, we felt that it made the song more interesting and also strengthened the atmosphere we were looking for. So, we did the same thing with two other compositions – hence, “Nightcall” was born.
Where do you see yourselves after this release and what is next for De Arma? We’re now back in the studio, arranging songs for our next album which we hope to finalise before the year’s end. No more, no less.
be sure to stream and add After Dark, You’re There to your playlists today!