Yayla interview (05/2017)


With: Emir Toğrul
Conducted by: Mr. Doctor (e-mail)
Published: 04.05.2017

Band profile:

Yayla


I've discovered Emir's band Yayla back in 2012 when I was chosen to review his sophomore album "Sathimasal". Our contact has grown over the years as I have reviewed albums from his other projects like Chaoscunt and still keep in touch on a regular basis. Naturally, it was just a matter of time before a formal interview was in the works.



First of all, I would like to thank you for taking the time out to chat with me today. How are you and your three main projects (Yayla, Blliigghhtted, Viraneisr) doing so far this year?

Thank you Rod, its always a pleasure to be talking with you. I am doing well, in London and happy. Although I have mostly been painting rather than making music, projects are doing good, they are mostly being worked in my head, future seems very extreme and experimental for all of them. Today I am releasing a Viranesir album called Satanic Mosque.

Viranesir is clearly the oddball of your three projects in terms fo music and lyrical content. Then again, all three projects differ from each other. For the newcomers out there: Could you tell us about how these musical projects started? Let us begin with the oldest, Yayla.

Yayla started when we were in high school and wanted to push the boundaries of musical and spiritual desolation. Blighted (Blliigghhtted) now known as Chaoscunt started with Ruhan coming into our lives with her Satanic majesty, it was supposed to push the boundaries of evil. Viranesir started out as a fictional band in my first film, which was the name I released the music I made for the film, I let it morph and it is what it is now, no genre and full psycho.

So you have set different goals for each one of them. Naturally, the pass of time can make a huge impact. This year, Yayla turned into a decade old project (most sincere congratulations!). How has Yayla changed over time in terms of both concept and sound? Is it going along an expected path visualized ten years ago or has it dramatically changed?

It dramatically changed and it should really get back to the path I envisioned for it, which it will. As I started I wanted to make music like I did in Ruhizolasyon, taking metal and doing something else with it, but with time it became less and less original, a normal fucking metal band. I am not saying next album will be a return to what I was doing in Ruhizolasyon but it will be made in the mindset of pushing away the limits of extremity and desolation, what Yayla was formed for.


Yayla's debut, Ruhizolasyon, from 2011

Your debut was indeed very different from the later albums by the fact that it was an instrumental album where the grey area between black metal and ambient was much bigger. This was further pushed by the warm and extremely fuzzy production. You seem disillusioned when talking about Yayla's evolution. We should go deeper into this. Can you look back and picture when and how these changes you now dislike started?

All throughout actually. Yayla started when I was 16 and now I am 26 and within that time frame I lived in 3 countries, went to 2 art schools full time and made so much art. I was always looking for the best way for me to make art and get the most satisfaction. I never held myself back from using my projects for this end. Imagine you're playing an RPG and you're exploring a dungeon, you want to go into every room, knowing nothing will come out but you go in anyway, it is kind of like that. Now I am closer to knowing which room has the treasure and I will be focused on that. Maybe this is one of those other rooms?

While not as old as Yayla, your other two projects have also experienced some drastic changes. Viranesir is chaotic and eclectic by nature, mixing tons of different styles at once. Chaoscunt, formely known as Blliigghhtted, saw the death of your bandmate and friend Ruhan. Have these two projects "stayed in the right lain" so far or have they derailed on their goals like Yayla did over time?

Chaoscunt's role was a philosophical or ideological one, its still on the path, music is irrelevant to it's goal. Viranesir never had a role to fulfil musically nor ideologically so it is still on the path of chaos.

Could you further explain what are the philosophies and ideas linked to Blighted? How do they translate into the music you make for that project? How do these concepts distinct themselves from Yayla's?

As you know there is ziillion satanic black metal bands, however I have never seen one so sharply define the question of evil in light to the dualistic construct of existence. I can sense that they have an essence of it but never go deeper. We aim to shaprly define it and go deeper. Evil is an illusion and there is no objective values in this existence, this is the key to freedom which law or forces of order call evil, or possessed by the devil. Musically Ruhan had a system where she would try to "transcribe" our riffs and compositions into a seemingly random structure, I don't think it worked well, that is why Into The Cunt Of The Witch is better because I made most of the structuring there, with her technique. Yayla is more down to earth and immediate where Chaoscunt is more based in fantasy both content and form.

It almost appears as if the projects are siblings. More or less similar origins yet using two opposite ways to express themselves. Would you say this was a conscious decision?

I am the guy who makes all these projects and I have a very sharp vision as opposed to many other people who are looking for what ideology or image to cling onto and suck like a leech pretending they actually came up with that crap, hence it is unconscious and natural for me to be expressing that one essence in all these different projects.

You are originally from Turkey but now live in London (you mentioned a third country though). Would you mind commenting on the reasons behind the change in location? How did you experience the music scene in each country? Have both scenes influenced you in any way? And if so, how?


Emir performing live
Third is Canada. In every country I played live, I like playing live but get banned and find it really hard for people to back me up, easiest have been Turkey because they don't ban me there. I am very social and outgoing and like the people who are in these artistic subcultures but music fans, especially those who like extreme ones are uneducated peasants most of the time. In my personal life I like intellectual people and having deep conversations better so I don't hang around metal people much. I don't like my home country because it is a conservative piece of shit full of peasants, they don't appreciate art. Canada is too cold and too PC for me to thrive in. I've been in England 3 years and it is the best of all worlds, hope I can stay here till the end of my life. The most influence I get from others is my will to separate myself from what I see around me, I look at what goes on in a scene and I try to be everything they hate, aren't, despise, etc.

I was just about to ask you about your live experiences. As a one-man-band, a live performance is always an interesting idea. Many artists working alone do not perform live. What made you give a live setting a try?

In a live setting, I am able to interact with society in a way that makes it impossible to do it in real life. I basically rape them, without going to jail, or them fighting back or feeling bad about it. I love trying different stuff, and theatre is a great thing to try out, which is what essentially live music is. There is also nothing I hate more than a band not raping the audience, which is all bands that I have seen except me or GG Allin. I worship GG Allin and try to expand on what he did, a fucking rape ritual. Life is short and boring, must rape!

You have performed live quite a few times now, with your most notable concerts being under the Viranesir banner. How have these experiences been to you? How has it been for the other two projects?

Viranesir is always great and fun. The audience really has a lot of fun and my ideas are well translated with what I do. The lyrics are audible and deep so they have a lot to think about and their horizons are expanded. We have great conversations afterward. Chaoscunt is great too and I had truly amazing dark shows, I love black metal and I love singing and playing guitar at the same time, though the lyrics aren't very understandable and people don't know what the fuck it's about except a generic satanic black metal show where the guy severely cuts himself. But I only had one tour and I will work on it and upgrade it like hell for the next tour so that it becomes as unique and ideological as Viranesir. When it comes to Yayla, I only had one ambient show, people really fell in love with it as I did a live music set for Fear Through Eternity but future holds much surprises for live Yayla also.

You mentioned earlier about you getting banned due to the content of your shows. I also remember how Viranesir ended up banned from bandcamp... Although, if you ask me, the way you use concepts like sexism and nazism are obviously in a tongue-in-cheek manner. What are your standards in terms of free speech and censorship?

They have the right to ban me of course, being the son of a mobster, I don't take shit and whenever someone disrespects me in my record label I kick them for what they say, which makes me a censurer haha. But I believe that it is pointless for venues or bandcamp to ban me because they do it out of fear from social justice warriors. I got banned for lack of hygiene and breaking stuff in venues which I repeatedly told the owners that I want to compensate for, but they said no and don't come back because in reality they just wanted to get rid of me for my subject matter. Everybody is afraid of antifa and SJW's these days and to not get bullied by them they distance themselves from me. Everything is so about being afraid of that mob and avoiding their assaults, which I ain't. The important thing to remember here is that there are no objective values and art and speech is a very healthy way to express yourself in my opinion. The moment one tries to question if my nazi or sexist lyrics are real or ironic is the moment one loses the whole point. Who means what anyway? Does a neo-nazi mean what he says or is he a frustrated young who was raped by his brother as a youth? Does that antifa who bans Marduk fighting his inner bigot who is clueless about the world as to be so arrogant to force his own comfort zone upon others by violence? Is that fundamental islamic ideologue just frustrated about not getting enough european pussy? These are the questions art should ask, and banning shit will only push these inside and make them explode into ways that would change their pathetic facebook profile pictures asking "why oh why?" and "pray for this pray for that". Your hands are bloodstained, not mine. Ban me all you want.

Dead Pedophile Looking Back At All The Kids He Could Have Fucked

Let us distant ourselves from the useless drama and discuss some of the practical subjects around your projects. You are basically a jack of all trades: Besides handling most if not all the musical aspects of your projects, you also have your own label (Merdümgiriz), do your own artwork and merch to the point of literally gluing pieces together, and even work with visual media and short films... How do you deal with so much responsibility and ambitions?

It is more me dealing with life through these things that I do rather than dealing with these things. I am really addicted to making art, I do something every day, sometimes 3 things a day. It is a lot of fun for me. I just don't like working in the record company that much because programming the websites, writing press releases, fucking promoting the shit is not art for me but otherwise the making stuff part is great! I really like painting because it is such a quick release of frustrations onto a canvas. Filmmaking is the worst because you not only need lots of people, but also takes long as fuck to make it.

Perhaps you could get hold of someone to do some of the administrative aspects of your label although that would imply you working with more people. What a dilemma! What would you say are the pros and cons of such a strict DIY atitude towards your art?

I would get someone if I had a little more money. I don't mind working with people if I can command them rather than "collaborating". DIY is the greatest because you're very independent, especially if you are someone like me who gets a hard on by doing edgy stuff. When you're the only one you have to answer to, you don't have to take any shit. Con's is the moment when you have to do the things you don't want to do because you're alone, but otherwise its totally amazing! Especially hand-making every cassette and t-shirt, like how cool is the fact that everything comes from my fucking hand, the hand that made the music. And I really like making the stuff. Also, it is fucking cheap as fuck. Sometimes bums tell me to give them change and I tell them how much I make to live by, they laugh hard. Freedom and independence.

Music is the area in which you are getting most recognition with. Despite the disadvantages of having to work with so many people, do you have any plans of doing more films and release them like you did with Fear Through Eternity (in which Yayla provided the soundtrack)?

There is actually two films made about me right now if that counts, one of them is a documentary about me and another one a feature film in which a character is obsessed with me, in which I will make a cameo. I actually have a feature length narrative film called Drink From The Fountain Of Uncertainty which is the mother of Viranesir. It was a movie made in 2013 about what I would be if I returned to Turkey and lived with my dad, doing nothing, just being depressed. I also need to make a new film called Clown Cunt to graduate from my shitty master's program. I am a filmmaker, I will continue doing it for sure!

What about your paintings? Have you done any exhibitions? Have you ever thought of selling them?

I took my paintings with me on tour last year and exhibited them on the venues, but I'd really like to do a proper one, I will look into it. I put it up on sale on the market where I sell shirts, nobody buys them because I value them really high. I would like to sell them!


Not So Pussy Now Are We


Torturing This Dyke For Satan's Might

During your journey, you have with no doubt gained some wisdom on how to handle all these elements of the art-making process. Do you have any particular tips for anyone working on his/her art as independently as possible?

Advice: You can really do it yourself, like, really. Fuck people...

Your label welcomes music from different genres; from black to doom metal, punk, folk, electronica and even hip-hop. I can imagine how entertaining it is for an eclectic person to work with like-minded people who play different genres as the ones you tackle with your projects.

Yeah man, I don't have a genre, everything can be extreme for me. Most satanic extreme metal bands are gayer nowadays than boybands in both their pathetic bandwagon attitudes and safe lyrical content so genre is no defining factor for beauty as it used to be back in the day. Which is good. Most my artists share this notion. I am releasing a hip-hop album myself today actually!

Wow! I'm very excited to hear that. I was actually wondering if these artists/bands have influenced you in any way. Have you become more interested in releasing your own albums dealing with other genres in particular?

I have always been interested to explore other styles, but more so recently. My mind is racing with acoustic guitar album projects and orchestral which are two of my favourite styles. When I was little I used to listen to Snoop Dogg a lot but Nick Noro, who is the guy from Bay Area Thrash outfit Survival got me into hip-hop when we were touring last summer. He provided me with 3 beats in this album, he owes me because he almost got us killed because he fucked the wife of a psycho guy on the last day of tour. But he really is a great guy! I am very inspired by my other artists as well, and other music I am listening to. Time will come to explore many, many styles with my own projects!

Well Emir, this conversation has been a pleasure. On behalf of Metalstorm, its' staff and users, I thank you for the opportunity to dive deeper in the inner workings of your craft and to separate the artist from the art. I leave the last words to you!

Thanks so much for Metalstorm and especially you for supporting it fully over the years, it shows real class! Most people are too afraid. Love & Peace, Emir.


Here you can find Emir's online gallery and his label Merdümgiriz


 



Posted on 04.05.2017 by An extremely lazy reviewer but he's so cute you'd forgive him for it.


Comments

Comments: 4   Visited by: 268 users
04.05.2017 - 23:37
flightoficarus
Stamp Tramp
Always an interesting dude.
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Daily underground metal recommendations at Metal Trenches.
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05.05.2017 - 15:30
Apothecary
PsyCHEdelic
Emir is a great guy and an extremely talented musician. At the surface level his art and behavior may simply appear as extravagance for the sake of extravagance, but if you actually sit down and talk to him you'll see he really has an interesting philosophy on life and is very passionate about who he is and what he does. Excellent interview and one that will no doubt bring some more attention to the guy, which he certainly deserves. Good work, Rod
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Written by RaduP on 14.01.2016 at 02:08

So you're not actually a bearded shaman opening his third eye through music?
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05.05.2017 - 19:11
Vombatus
Potorro
I like unconventional interview answers. I also like Mr Toğrul's DIY approach. That's how the underground should be if it does what it pretends to express.
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29.09.2017 - 10:32
Raven Of Death
FUCK SATANISIM
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