International metal horror ensemble Them is back with their second album entitled Manor of the Se7en Gables, this time for SPV/Steamhammer. Their enigmatic vocalist KK Fossor is here to tell us everything we need to know about it and bid you welcome into their coven…
Greetings KK Fossor and welcome to the pages of Metal Sound! How are you guys doing these days, is everything alright in Them’s ranks?
Everyone is alive and breathing for now my friend. We will be clawing our way out of our caskets soon in preparation for some unearthly shows.
The main reason for this conversation is of course your second full length entitled Manor of the Se7en Gables! Now that everything is said and done how are you satisfied with the final outcome, is there something you would change about it?
We are all extremely pleased with the final product. We are very passionate about what we do and take pride in our music. With everyone involved, we would not change any of it. Of course we made small modifications as we evolve but the core foundation remains the same.
I would say that Manor of the Se7en Gables took everything that was good about your debut Sweet Hollow and made it even better in every possible aspect. What would you say about this comparison?
Well we definitely evolved as a musical outfit. We took what worked and tweaked it a little. A big addition was Paul Sabu (Alice Cooper, David Bowie) with his additional background vocals. If there is a 3rd album, we would keep the same basic formula with minor additional tweaks to evolve a little more.
How would you personally describe the sound of Manor of the Se7en Gables? I found some elements of heavy, thrash, power and even prog metal all thrown in for a good measure…
I would classify M7G as a cross between Megadeth and Dream Theater with a touch of King Diamond. The elements you find were all added strategically in order to drive the story and theme.
One of the most important aspects of Them is for sure concept horror story so please tell us something about the tale of Manor of the Se7en Gables, is it continuation of Sweet Hollow one?
Just like “Sweet Hollow”, “Manor of the Se7en Gables” is a concept story. What sets THEM apart from other bands that record concept stories is that we are telling a story on each album that when you put both albums together, tells one larger story. So M7G takes place moments before the ending of “Sweet Hollow” and continues with more death, destruction and most importantly…FIRE! M7G Finds myself and assistant “Remsen” fleeing the grounds of Sweet Hollow upon the conclusion of the transportation exorcism of Mary. The duo flees north to Salem, Massachusetts and are taken in to safety by a scullery maid named Sarah. This house they took refuge is run by a coven. The people of Sweet Hollow contract the last known witch hunter named Peter Thompson to hunt down KK and bring him to Justice for all the deaths they uncovered in and around Sweet Hollow. Peter Thompson tracks down KK, Remsen escapes and KK does not. To be continued?
Them is comprised of international musicians from two continents, please tell us how it is to write music for Them and record it in such circumstances?
We write our music in our respective countries. We use Facebook Messenger to mainly communicate and transfer files back and forth until we have a ground work for our album. Then we record in our own countries. With performing live, we practice our parts and several days before a tour we rehearse as a group and then go out touring.
From the band’s name all the way to your look and horror concept, it is no secret that you guys are very inspired by one and only King Diamond! Them initially started as KID tribute band as a matter of fact, so are you bothered by those comparisons or you take them as a compliment?
The comparisons will never stop even though we are 100% original band. Yes, we started as a KD tribute with the same name. I decided to keep the name because of the logo and history behind it. There is more KD influence on “Sweet Hollow” then on “Manor of the Se7en Gables”. I love horror/Halloween and Billy Joel and Lenny Kravitz. Do you hear those influences too? Our backgrounds stem from various styles of Heavy Metal. THEM is Power/Thrash/Prog/Death metal all wrapped up in one!
While we are at it, what would you say about the debate of originality vs. quality in metal, what would you choose as the most important aspect for a metal band?
That is a tough question. I would have to say they are equally important but if forced to choose one over the other I would say Quality. Being 100% original is very hard unless another sub genre is created. Some people say we are one of the first bands to lead the wave of a new sub genre calling us horror metal. I am ok with that label. Quality is always important to us. Our saying is “Music First”.
Are you perhaps planning to do some promotional videos for Manor of the Se7en Gables? I guess that you would need some huge budget to transfer your songs into video settings…
We are more likely releasing a music video in 2019 for one of the most exciting songs on the album. I will not reveal which one but yes, THEM will release an actual video one day in the near future…
One more question that interests a lot of fans is your activity on live front… are you planning some promotional tours for Manor of the Se7en Gables and when can we expect to see it?
We are planning on several runs in Europe, US, Canada. They will be broken up over different runs starting in May 2019. We hope to play more shows than we have played for Sweet Hollow. Hope to see you all there!
That would be all for this chat, I would like to wish you all the best and thank you for your time! Parting words are yours…
Thank you for your time and we hope your readers enjoy “Manor of the Se7en Gables” as much as we enjoyed making it. We hope to see you all in 2019! Peace.
- Questions by Slobodan Trifunovic
Answers by KK Fossor