Do you reckognize the name Necromorbus? Yes, it's the drummer in the Swedish Black Metal band Funeral Mist. What you perhaps didn't know too much about is that the guy also have his own studio, simply called Necromorbus Studio. Since it's not very often you see interviews with studios in magazines I thought it was a good idea to investigate Necromorbus studio as well as checking out what his bands are up to now. Tore "Necromorbus" Stjerna told us the following...

Interview by Whodan


How do you think the studio and you as a sound engineer has developed since you recorded Funeral Mist’s demos (which both had horrible sound quality if I may say so.)?
When I look back on that time, I can't call what I did "studio recording", it was simply a hobby so to speak, even if I at times felt quite satisfied with the result. At first, I had no knowledge in Black Metal music, which mainly was what I got to record (since the Death Metal scene, which perhaps interested me more then) was completely dead at that time. Anyway, time went by, and I got to record some stuff that of course gave me greater insight in the studio engineer profession. I read articles in magazines a lot, bought new equipment and tried stuff out, tweaked the equipment to the maximum and experimented with different settings. I guess this is a very important step in the development; had I just sat around doing nothing, and just try everything in modest proportions, I would never have known what I know today. However, the latter is of course the most accurate, since my job is to document what is being played, not screw everything up with cool effects and such. Actually, I experimented a lot with electronic music at one time which was a great experience for me. I tried to mix both natural and electronic elements to a great mishmash of sound, and some stuff actually turned out quite satisfying. I guess the big break came when I got hold of some money, that I used to upgrade the studio from four to sixteen channels. After that, I've invested almost all the money I've made, in the studio, so I buy new equipment all the time! I guess there is two reasons for this: first of all, I like new stuff basically, and second, you wouldn't believe me if I told you the tax rate of uninvested income! I never thought there were tax rates that high actually, but believe me, now I know...

When and how did you get into producing at the first place?
It all began when I bought my porta studio, a long time ago when I look at it now... I guess recording our first demo (with the good ol' band) was kind of a beginning too, but back then, I didn't know shit about recording equipment. Anyway, I studied music in different forms from the seventh grade, so I had been concerned with how things sound for a long time before I started doing recordings on my own. Anyway, once you get a hang of how the equipment works, it's really easy to "maneuver"! The hard thing is getting a satisfactory and even sound image, which is something I still have problems with to be honest. So I guess the driving force when starting was to eventually do something that I could be proud of. And I guess that's where I am today, with a few exceptions of course... So to conclude this, the main reason I started was my great interest in SOUND, and it has all escalated from that!

How much money have you invest in the studio so far? It must have cost you a fortune!


I guess that would be around 150 000 SEK, which isn't much for a studio I might point out. However, I didn't buy everything in one day! I've expanded more and more all the time, and still do. The largest investment was the big upgrade two years ago or so, when I spent 45 000 in a few days... Also, the upgrade from analogue to digital wasn't that cheap either, I had to borrow money for that actually, so in an sense, that didn't feel like that much when come to think of it... *haha*

Do you think the studio have the potential to become as known as the Abyss studio or Sunlight studio in the future? Or will you keep it as a studio mainly for the underground bands?
My main goal is of course to upgrade the studio as often as possible, so eventually, perhaps I will play in the same league as the above mentioned. However, people must realize that it's a long way to get there. You can't compare my business with Abyss or Sunlight; same as you cannot compare Abyss to Metropolis Studio or Abbey Road. Sunlight studio has been around for a very long time by



now, and it's pretty natural that Thomas is more experienced than me, who hasn't been doing this really "seriously" for more than two years. As for the "underground" aspect, I hope to retain my underground reputation for long to come, and the prices will stay about the same I guess. However, this brings up an interesting question: is Sunlight an underground studio? It most certainly started out as one! When did it become "non underground"? (Hmmm, don't know. I consider a cheap studio to be an underground studio. - ed) I rest my case...

Contrary to most other studios it’s pretty cheap to record in your studio. Will you keep it this way?
As I said before, probably. I might raise the prices a little in the future, but I'll not double my prices over night or anything like that. Many bands are tempted by my prices, and why would I want to lose such customers? Many of the bands are also very surprised when they hear the result, you know, the sound in relation to the price. And good criticism is what keeps me going!

Which of the productions are you most satisfied with so far?
So far, I'd have to say the Insision MCD. I've done some other things that turned out quite good too, but it's really nothing worth mentioning. It's a little hard for me to answer that question, since most of the time right after a recording is done, I think it sounds great/good/whatever, but after a week, perhaps I don't feel that satisfied anymore. Anyway, an other recording that I think turned out pretty good is a future Furia demo, that will probably be out pretty soon.. Even though the music isn't really that intriguing to me, I like the sound and all that. Of course, as with everything else, it has it's flaws, but generally I like it a lot!

As it seems there are mostly Black Metal and Death Metal bands who approach you to produce them. Do you think you are able to produce a Heavy Metal album or perhaps a Power Metal album?
I don't think that would be a problem. It's perhaps quite the opposite actually... I like doing new stuff, and since Black, Death and Heavy (among others) can be put in front of the word Metal, I don't really think this would be a problem for me. So in other words, I haven't limited myself to Black or Death, I have just decided to exploit Metal music for my evil plans... *haha* Perhaps I will do other kinds of music too in the future, but my main interest is metal music, and it'll probably stay that way too if you ask me. One thing deserves to be said though; it's not really that surprising that I have produced/engineered mostly Black and Death, because when you think of it, this is way more common than say Heavy or Power Metal among young bands!

What band would be your dream to produce an album for?
I don't think there is such a band. The sound I produce wouldn't give the band justice, I am way too inexperienced! Perhaps if you would ask me that very same question in ten years, I'd come up with a better answer, but I doubt that it would be the same bands in the spotlight then, so it's really impossible to answer. However, what I enjoy producing the most is Death Metal. Without a doubt.

You and Heathendoom use to arrange Skärseld (Purgatory in english. A local Metal gig with certain good bands - ed). Will you continue with this now when Heathendoom is moving away from Stockholm? Tell me about your plans for the coming Skärseld.
Oh yes, we will most certainly do! the fact that Per has moved to Örebro doesn't really bother us that much, in fact, it's perhaps even better, because he will be able to do promotion in another town, while I'll take care of Stockholm. And boy, do we have plans for the next gig! I think our goal will always be to exceed the previous, and I can tell you that we certainly will at Part III. I cannot tell you anything more right now though, other than that it will take place on the 30th of October, in the same place as before. Promotion will be out weeks before the gig, so you won't be able to miss it! Updated information will also be found regularly at

Don’t you think it would be a good idea in the future to expand and make Skärseld into something even bigger? Perhaps like a smaller Metal festival or something.
We have talked about it in great extension actually, but it is at this moment not clear how things will develop. Taking it to that level means a lot of organization, and a lot of hard work, plus we have to have a much bigger budged, as well as a lot of permissions from the authorities. But we will do what we can, and we have many people behind us, so hopefully, a sort of festival outdoors gig will take place in the summer of 2000, if we're lucky!

What do you do to pay your bills? Can you make a living of the studio, Funeral Mist etc or do you have a normal work besides of this?
Yes, I am able to make a living out of the studio. At times, it's a little difficult, but I always manage to make ends meet. Then of course, I still live at home with my parents, which really is a pain in the neck, but it also means that I don't have to pay that much rent, and the food is free, so I really don't want to complain... When it comes to Funeral Mist and the other bands I play in, I don't make any money out of it. I guess nowadays, you should be happy if someone wants to pay your expenses in the studio plus pay the printing and take care of promotion. After all, the scene is really not that big, it's simply a sub genre, and I doubt that many people can make a living out of playing this type of music. As for other work: no, I have only my studio, and I would probably not coupe with another job...

Weren’t you also involved in an e-zine called Krieg or something?
Almost, it was called Krig. We had some pretty interesting interviews actually, among others a ten page interview with Typhon of Necropolis. Unfortunately, things didn't go as planned. Me and the guy I did it with were both unemployed i..e. didn't have any money to print the thing, and as time went by, we got less and less interested in releasing it, since interviews started to get inaccurate, and the reviewed albums had been out for like two years. Finally, I decided to put the zine on the net, because I didn't want the material that we spent a lot of time on to just wind up on my hard drive. I never bothered to promote the site much though, it still is there yes, but I will not bother to promote it now either. He who seeks shall find, but don't expect anything new I tell you.

What is happening with Funeral Mist at this moment? Isn’t time for a new release soon?
Indeed it is, and we are truly working on it as we speak. We have a couple of new songs, and there is more to come. There will be some old goodies on it too, but I'll share no details right now! Check out the Funeral Mist page regularly for updated information. Furthermore, one song will be recorded for a split 7" with Malign, and it will probably also wind up on Nordic Metal II I think. More information on this will also be found on the homepage. Also, the "Devilry" album is soon out on vinyl, containing a bonus track and some changes in the layout. So keep your eyes open!

Do you know how many copies you’ve sold of ”Devilry”?
I have no idea, you'll have to talk to Shadow Records about that.

What happened with your own band Necromorbus then? You told me something about that you will record a cover of Vithatten. Why?
Because Vithatten is the essence of pure primitive evil, and deserves a bigger audience. I have put the Necromorbus project on ice for a long while now, since I haven't had any satisfying ideas in a long time. I wasn't too pleased with the second demo, at least not as pleased as after the first, so I wanted to wait a while so I didn't make the same mistake again. Then, Zavorash got into the picture, and I started composing for that instead, which I fancy a lot actually, I have missed being in a full-size band for some time. So most of the stuff I write nowadays wind up in Zavorash, but I do have some new riffs that doesn't fit in in Zavorash, so those will most certainly wind up on some future Necromorbus release.

What is happening with the rest of the bands you’re involved in?



It's not that many bands really, just Funeral Mist and Zavorash. We are both rehearsing new stuff, what's more to tell... By the way, we lost one of our guitar players in Zavorash about 6-7 months ago, and we are still looking for a new. Right now, Henke of Mornaland has become more or less a steady member, and will probably stay that way for a while, but he lives a bit too far away... Our main priority right now though, is to find a bass player, which we have never had (I have done the bass on the recordings so far), so if anyone is interested, get in touch!

Cheers! End this interview with filling in something I might have forgotten.
Thanks for the interview (cliché), and keep up the good work. For those who are interested in the studio, any information you need will be found at which at this moment only is available in Swedish, but I'll do something about that some day. Any questions? Just mail me or call! I'll be more that happy to answer. Till then... ¤ ¤ ¤