Thomas ‘Sarke’ Berglie interview

‘Bogefod is the name of the Viking king that dies and wakes up again from his grave. This is a 1000 years old saga.’

photo: Jørn Steen

The Goat Tavern: Hi Thomas, how is it going? Firstly, congratulations on the new record Bogefod which was released last month. What was the response from media so far?

Sarke: Thanks. The response has been very good. Of course, there are some that are not so into what we are doing, but that is normal for everybody. Mostly, it has been great.

TGT: Bogefod is your forth album with Sarke. Did the writing process for this record change much since your first release Vorunah in 2009? How long did it take to compose and put everything together for Bogefod?

Sarke: We do it almost the same way. This time we worked more with each song as a complete band. As before, I made most of the music, put the work together and change it around and add or remove riffs. It works for everybody to get the best song. I guess it took a bit over a year to come up with everything. And I guess a three weeks time in the studio.

TGT: Also, you continue working with Indie Recordings. Looking at your career and the new release can you tell us more about your relations between Indie Recordings and yourselves? What do they do for you and are you all fully satisfied with their effort?

Sarke: This was our last release on our deal with Indie Recordings. We have to see what’s next – if we re-sign or look for something new. As a record company, they finance and release everything. Of course, I can say that they could do a better job, but I guess we, as a band, could also do a better job to promote the Sarke.

Sarke Bogefod

TGT: For Bogefod you’ve used the same producer as before, Lars-Erik Westby. He has been working with the band since your debut record. Can you tell how much input he’s got on this album? Will you plan to try someone else in future or you would rather work with the same producer?

Sarke: He has always done a great job for us. He knows how we want our music to be. He also helped us a lot with the sound. I guess we will work with him the next time too, but you never know.

TGT: Can you tell us more about this Bogefod title itself and what it means to you? How does it refer to lyrics which are written by Hilde Nymoen, inspired by Eyrbyggja Saga, could explain the lyrical concept?

Sarke: Bogefod is the name of the Viking king that dies and wakes up again from his grave. This is a 1000 year old Norse saga.

TGT: One last question concerning this album and it’s about a song called Dawning. Musically this is something new for Sarke. It’s different and very original I think it fits well with all the other songs. Who is the lady with this ‘angelic’ voice? Is this song related to the lyrical concept of this record?

Sarke: Thanks. I also think it worked out great on the album. Her name is Beate Amundsen. It was Steinar Gundersen that knew her from before and brought her in. She did a great job. Yes, this song was good for the concept and the atmosphere on the album.

TGT: Sarke and Khold don’t play live much. Why is that? Both bands have a massive amount followers around the globe. I’m sure if you played a tour it would be sold out pretty much everywhere. These days touring for metal musicians is bread and butter. What is your view on plying live?

Sarke: We do enjoy to play live. We have played some gigs the last year, mostly with Khold. With Sarke, it has been only a few. Because of the members we have in Sarke, it is a bit more difficult to have the time to rehearse and travel. Maybe we can get on a tour with Khold if we get a good offer.

TGT: Sarke and Khold made appearance on the Norwegian festival in Bergen, Blastfest in 2015 and 2016 respectively. What are your memories from both editions? Are you planning more summer festival appearances with either of the bands this year?

Sarke: Both these festivals worked out great. Really good crowd and a nice trip to Bergen. It’s not too often people get a chance to see Nocturno Culto live, so it seems both during and after the show that the people enjoyed that. And of course Khold delivered an awesome live performance this year at Blastfest. Next concert now is Khold and Tulus live at Maryland Deathfest in the US in May.


Sarke live at Blastfest 2015 photo: The Goat Tavern

Khold live at Blastfest 2016 photo: The Goat Tavern

TGT: Do you meet often as a band with Sarke to rehearse together or do you just exchange new ideas online? Eventually, when you all meet how does your band practice looks like? Is it filled with lot of alcohol and the meeting turns to a big party or you just meet, play and go home sober?

Sarke: We have a few rehearsals. Also, before gigs we have some rehearsals. When we make new songs, before entering the studio, we meet, but not as a complete band. We don’t make anything on the computer. We don’t even make any demos. It’s just in my head, then the rehearsal, then record the track in the studio. There is no drinking or party at our rehearsal.

photo: Jørn Steen

TGT: You all worked in the music business for a while now, what are your musical inspirations now? Is it different to what it was 20 years ago? What would be your top five records released in the last five years?

Sarke: My inspiration is the same now that it was 20 years ago. I don’t think I have even got 5 albums in the last 5 years. I don’t think I have any top five to mention either. I know there is a lot of good releases out there, but I will focus on our own music and try to be original.

TGT: On behalf of The Goat Tavern team I wish you all the best with the promotion of Bogefod. The record is outstanding. Thank you for taking your time. The interview is now yours! You can say something for your UK fans?

Sarke: Thank you very much for the interview and the good review. Hopefully people in the UK will check out Bogefod.

Sarke

Links:

Indie Recordings
Bogefod review @ The Goat Tavern