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Samsara Blues Experiment



Three guys in a room making music



Prologue
Samsara Blues Experiment is undoubtedly one of the most interesting and original bands in the vast sea of a stoner. And, like most of the advanced groups of the genre, over time this German trio goes further out of the narrow bounds of genre cliches, gradually growing into something more than just another bunch of hippie nerds. Released in 2017, One with the Universe album significantly expanded the creative palette of the band and it seems the musicians do not intend to stop in their evolution. I am sure that fans of high-quality stoner/psych music are already familiar with amazing works of this group. If not, this interview will be an excellent opportunity to start exploring the music of Samsara Blues Experiment. The leader and founder of SBE, Christian Peters (level-headed and friendly as always) spoke a lot of interesting things about the band and about himself.
Hi Chris! Whats the news of the Samsara Blues Experiment at the moment?

Hi! After a little break, because we did this sort of a World Tour in Sep-Nov 2018, we are preparing our next tour already, which will be Europe from End of March to Mid of April 2019. We also agreed on not recording a new album too soon and instead want to write more songs before. We have already 5 new tracks, but we want to collect more material. My personal views on music in general may have changed a lot too, so we need a bit more time...

All right, what do you think, the next album will be in line with One with the Universe, or will you continue the experiments and we will hear the influence of your solo project Surya Kris Peters?

Let's see, I can only say that synthesizers fascinate me more and more and guitar well... it's such a long time that I play guitar (30 years almost), it gets a bit old sometimes you know. It seems just a little limited because a guitar just basically sounds like a guitar and a synthesizer, now that is a universe of sounds! But also our music tastes change from year to year and well... we will see!

Tell me, how successful was the year 2018 for your band?

I think very successful. At least I think we are happy with the result. It was also quite a challenge! Like I said we did a kind of World Tour, playing Australia & New Zealand, South America & Mexico and Europe in the time frame of three months which is not much if you add all the time we spend in airports only. We played many surprisingly big shows, some of them sold out which is always thrilling and rewarding. So, lots of good memories...

How do you rate your latest album One with the Universe today, almost two years after the recording?

I think it is our best album by far in terms of songwriting and sound. Period.

Can we say that you finally found the most suitable formula for playing in a trio format after Richard left?

Of course man, it is 5 years that we play as this three piece! Richard was in this band for only 5 years. That is now really in the past, even while we too cherish the memories because we were young and naive etc. He also still visits us in the rehearsal room occasionally and then there's this old feeling when we hang out, but
he changed (he's happy with his studio work and being a sound engineer on tour), and we arranged quite well I'd say.

Please tell me how the band concept has evolved since the first album? It would be interesting to know your vision of the creative development of Samsara Blues Experiment.

Well just speaking from my personal point of view here, but in the days of Long Distance Trip I was a total Stonerrock/Psychedelic-addict, totally immersed in this scene - I even run a fan-webzine, went to all the shows, listened to all the bands, eagerly awaited the news albums etc. With Revelation & Mystery I went back to my roots in Metal, I was also in the turbulent times of a divorce and had to start again with my own life. With Waiting for the Flood well there was a lot of tension in the band I think, a bit of a feeling of being lost in space. Everybody wanted something, but no one seemed to know what exactly. The band was on the verge of breaking from Richard. With One with the Universe I think we finally sort of matured. At least we found ourselves somewhere again not being lost. Prog Rock has gotten a bigger influence too.

Please tell the story of creation of the cover for Revelation & Mystery album. Why it shows the Slavic characters?

Oleg Korolev (modern Russian artist in the style of Visionary Art) already had that painting finished. We found it on a website and loved it instantly. I myself was particularly drawn to the big spiral and the lions head, my exwife was kind of a Wiccan and made me read a lot of books about certain symbolisms, astrology etc. But the whole feeling of that artwork just totally fit with the music. Also we are East German, with a childhood in the former GDR, to a certain extend we feel slavic, it may sound strange but yes we do!

How do you think, what is the main feature of Samsara Blues Experiment?

Three guys in a room making music. Their very own music.

Can you say that Samsara Blues Experiment performs some kind of mission?

Maybe? I still believe we are very different from many other bands, especially in this Stonerrock scene. Correct me if I am wrong.

I know that you are a musician 24/7. And it's cool! But do you have time for any hobbies besides music?

Pho
tography and food. I am vegan now. Before I always thought vegan is kind of strange, but I had to become this due health issues, and it's actually fun to get to know more about food, how to prepare a nice meal. I really enjoy that! And, I also love to travel.

I always wanted to ask you this question personally. How did you come to this music, how did your passion begin?

Well, when I was 15 my father re-married and we moved to a very remote village in the German woods. I lost pretty much all my friends and hobbies (I was 100% into team sports before!). I had to rethink my life. I was lonely. I was miserable. The usual problems of adolescence kicked in (girls became interesting, know what I mean). I became more and more introverted. I discovered music. I mean I listened to music before, but it was just music without deeper meaning. I had my first metal tape at the age of 11 already. But now, all of a sudden it was my remedy. Metallica's Black Album became my sort of holy grail. I listened to this album every day and tried to play songs on a simple acoustic guitar. I wanted a electric guitar. I got one. And from there my father gave me stuff to listen to; Sabbath, Zeppelin, Rory Gallagher (Play like this! - he said.). Well, I discovered Kyuss, Fu Manchu and Nebula very shortly after that... Like I said I was an absolute Stonerrock maniac for many years to come! Only these days I lost interested, because the scene changed; the band's imagine often became more important than music and I don't like that at all.

That is, at the beginning, your father supported you. Did you feel (and do you feel now) the support of family? Is such support important to you?

My father encouraged me in the beginning, but never really said he's proud of what I achieved or sth, which I find a bit strange and sad. It was always clear to me that I needed to work in a creative and artistic way, but he always wanted me to have a secure job in some administration or sth. But I can not do that. Well, it's complicated with him still, I don't know why. My grandparents, who were sort of my second parents, especially since my mother died very early, always supported me with money and constant encouragement. Without them I probably would be a drug addict now, or dead too, who knows. It may sound dramatic, but I owe them a lot. Not just moneywise, but also from the love that they sho
wed me. And that is kind of necessary for everyone to have; the feeling of being important to somebody else.

How do you feel about extreme metal genres? It seems that such genres as thrash, death, black etc. are somewhere in a parallel universe for you. Note, I'm not saying it's bad! ))

I still dig bands like early Sepultura, Six Feet Under, earlier Metallica and some early Thrash like Sodom. It's not that I listen to that often, but occasionally I do, like when we just played a hippie festival and everything was a bit too peaceful and euphoric (I mean unbalanced.) LOL. I grew up with this stuff in the 90s. Black Metal is not my cup at all.

I think now is a unique situation in the music world. In the old days, each new generation of groups partly overthrew their predecessors. This was translated into business, media and among fans. Former heroes became irrelevant and they were forgotten. Now, thanks to the Internet, everything exists all at once in music. Everyone can listen and learn about a variety of groups, both modern and older. And now it's not a problem for people to listen Deep Purple and Morbid Angel at the same time, now this is a completely normal. I believe that this situation has immortalized many great bands. Now the listener is almost independent of magazines or MTV, as in the old days. Today everyone can find information about any musician himself and take a decision if he needed it. Everyone finds his own niche and now it is difficult to say what is really fashionable and what is not. There is just music. A lot of music. How do you comment on this?

I guess I don't think so, in some ways... There is always a lot of marketing activities from sides of big labels, and also media who present a certain group of bands as heroes, and everybody who is not as individualistic to go out and find his/her own way, seems to repeat their mantra: Oh yes Sleep, absolute gods! Come on! I know only very few people that judge music without the whole hocus pocus about a band's image. And the majority of people seems to be lost with that kind of brainwash imaginary; big amplifiers, big image THIS BAND MUST BE GOOD! It's ridiculous. Do you have instagram?

No

Every time I go there I feel like, the world has gone crazy, very crazy. Which of course is also an exaggeration, because in certain asp
ects it was always like this, only now everybody can retweet these informations and multiply everything to a multiverse of posts that you have to sort out, each and everybody for himself. I mean you have to mature and learn to sort out from this really huge amount of information; What is your truth? Where do you see yourself? What is good and bad for you? I can not judge others, but I learned that certain things are not good for me at all. And , people need their idols it seems. Its not always only about music. For a real musician that can be a bit sad, especially when you are struggling like pretty much everybody does in the beginnings of a band, some forever. But speaking for myself, I welcome the many opportunities that the internet offers. I totally worship my Spotify account! But then of course this is a gazillion times better than having to buy a CD, as it was in the 90s. Geez, who really wants to have that again, that is crazy! I know people who are like this.

What is your main disappointment?

The superficiality of people in general. The weird things you see in the music business everyday. And also, the issues we had with our last USA tour. I can not be too much specific, but not all that shines is gold.

How could you comment on the One with the Universe bootleg I sent you? ))

To be honest with you, I do not support this thing. I mean it is sort of interesting and in a way flattering BUT this person copies my label, my work, my life and gets money for this while we of course see nothing - and this is nothing but a SHAME! It is less about the money that we lose, as more the thing that people think it would be official while it is not. Know what I mean? Listen up guys, whenever you see a SBE CD and it is in a clear tray - PLEASE DON'T BUY IT! We sell our records for very decent prices from our webstore, the shipping to Russia is very cheap (4 Euros! Means the CD costs you 16 Euros). Please, if you want to support us, this is the way! Or Bandcamp or Spotify. Thank you!

Thats all. Thank you for your answers and your time. What important (for you) thought would you like to share with readers in the end?

Thanks for your interest! You know I can not address anyone directly. All a person does and is comes from his/her decision, and I believe that most people from their insides are good. The world seems crazier these days, but actually it's not. Just the amount of decisions you have to make may have increased. So, don't be sad or angry just because you don't understand sth. Being positive is what life should be about! Being grateful for the life you have, even if it is not always easy. And saying it with Greg Graffin sanity is a full time job, in a world that is always changing. So, best of luck to you whoever reads this! And, again thank you!

Interview by Alias
6 2019
the End


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