Triptykon Frontman Tom Gabriel Warrior Talks ‘Melana Chasmata’ Album
Triptykon frontman Tom Gabriel Warrior was the guest on Full Metal Jackie’s radio show this past weekend. The vocalist spoke about the band’s ‘Melana Chasmata’ album, their special edition box set version, the band’s artwork and the live concert experience. If you missed Jackie’s show, here’s her full interview with Triptykon’s Tom Gabriel.
It’s Full Metal Jackie bringing you two hours of metal each and every week. With us on the show this week, the one and only Tom Gabriel. How are you sir?
I’m doing very good. Actually, we had our first show with the new album two days ago, and I’m relieved now that that has happened. I’m doing very good now.
Fantastic, the new album ‘Melana Chasmata’ — it’s been a long time in the making, we’re all excited it’s here. The music is great. In terms of time, creativity and emotion, the making of ‘Melana Chasmata’ was a long journey. What makes the end result worth such a painful process?
I’m the last person to know that. I created the music, I cannot possibly rate it. It’s been such a difficult album that I myself still have a very critical stance regarding this album. And I haven’t even been able to listen to it in one go. I really have to leave that up to you or our audience. I first have to digest this whole process that took like 3 1/2 years. You’ll have to ask me again in half a year.
More music recorded throughout the making of the new album may be released as a mini album, or an EP. What separates those songs from ‘Melana Chasmata’? What do you like about them?
Nothing much separates them. We simply didn’t want to create an album that is overly long. It’s certainly a very long album, and we thought the first album was a bit on the long side so we tried to restrain ourselves. First and foremost, we wanted the album to have a natural, organic flow, so these are the songs that we selected for the album, and we simply had material left over. There is also one or two songs that we will re-record, so there is plenty of material left over. That is the reason why we were thinking about further releases.
Tom, Century Media was open to your vision and worked to produce a special edition box set version of the new album that meets your high standards. Creatively, how important is that type of non-musical collaboration to a band?
It’s extremely important, to me, it doesn’t take a backseat to the musical process. As people who have followed my career will readily know, the visual side has always been as important as everything else. A good album for me needs to be a combination that really works together, on every level — music, lyrics and visuals. I know a lot of bands separate that and put the focus on the music, but for me it’s always been a full package.
What is it about H. R. Giger’s art that you think makes a perfect visual interpretation of your music?
Well, in my eyes, first and foremost, he is the greatest living surrealist on this planet. In my eyes, he’s Hieronymus Bosch of our time, and he’s a genius. I’m an art enthusiast, but I cannot name a single artist who has reached his kind of vision and his kind of craft. In addition to that, he manages to show darkness with an incredible beauty with aesthetics. Unlike everybody else, it’s not just gore or — it’s something really, really beautiful, and there’s so many levels to it. It would take a book to describe everything that moves me about his art.
It’s Full Metal Jackie, it’s Tom Gabriel from Triptykon with us on the show. One of my favorite times seeing Triptykon was a Wacken. It was this amazing experience. It was my first time there. Your performance was my favorite of the evening. Do you know when you’ll be back in the States?
Well, we are always looking forward to going back to the States. We’ve had fantastic concerts in the United States. Unfortunately, it’s become extremely difficult due to, I guess, political or government processes for European bands to get work permits and to fulfill all the tax regulations and everything. I’ve been touring the United States ever since 1980, and it’s been much, much easier back then. So, it’s become quite a challenge to make it over there for a band from Europe. But, of course, we would like to play there — we have a fantastic audience there, we have a lot of personal friends there, and the South Maryland Deathfest — there is some other ideas that are out there, that we are talking about right now. So all I can do is assure you that once we can get the whole administration out the way, we will definitely will come over there.
Looking forward to that. I want to see the band live and see these songs played live. The new album ‘Melana Chasmata’ out in stores. Tom, I appreciate it!
The pleasure is all mine. It’s an honor.
Pick up Triptykon’s new album ‘Melana Chasmata’ at iTunes. This coming weekend, Full Metal Jackie will welcome on her show Animals as Leaders‘ Tosin Abasi and Javier Reyes. Full Metal Jackie can be heard on radio stations around the country — for a full list of stations, go to fullmetaljackieradio.com.