WHILE HEAVEN WEPT’S TOM PHILLIPS ON WALPYRGUS

We are very grateful to Tom Phillips (While Heaven Wept) for sharing these words about WALPYRGUS.

“I wanted to take a moment here to shed some light on my whereabouts, what’s been going on, and why for the first time in 17 years I’ve become involved with something other than While Heaven Wept.

It’s been quite some time since I’ve discussed what I’ve been doing musically – two years in fact – and now the time has finally come to reveal what has been going on: in March 2015 I was just beginning work on a solo project when I was approached by Scott (Waldrop) about tracking some keyboard parts for the debut album of Walpyrgus, which I was more than happy to do even before hearing the new material given our long history, plus it was an opportunity to put the instrumental arsenal I was building up through its paces, and I was eager to do something in light of recent events involving my own band.

The songs arrived one by one, each being more enthralling than the previous and it became very clear that Scott had a lot of ideas given the extensive notes and rough drafts in demo form. It was also very clear that – in my opinion – these were among the very best songs I’ve ever heard coming from my old friends… needless to say I was “in”, full stop. I was totally free to interpret the ideas any way that I wanted to and thus I was able to truly express myself, in turn impacting the arrangements of songs in the same way that every musician involved has.

That’s the thing about Walpyrgus: EVERY member of the band is responsible for making these songs what they are; everyone brought their skills, personality, and “A” game to the table – and the performances are both real and inspired…organic…not Pro-Tooled or forged in any way, rather the kind of music that everyone involved loves playing, the way we’ve done in our respective bands all our lives.

It was not lost on me or Scott that 20 years prior we co-founded the now long-running Twisted Tower Dire, yet that original configuration ultimately was short-lived due to both copious amounts of alcohol and the necessity to express other things musically on a much more personal level – you all know the rest of that story – but the point here is there’s always those “What If?” questions that remain. You know – like “What if the original line-up stayed together…” and so forth…and it’s not often that “second chances” actually turn into second comings…now we actually had the opportunity to dive into that parallel universe to answer some of those questions for ourselves.

Anyway, with this in mind, my role evolved over time from creating/performing/recording the keyboard parts to engineering other recording sessions to the deep editing of various tracks finally reaching a stage where I was overseeing the entire project with full “carte blanche” – and those of you who know me are cognizant this means a lot of hyper-detailing, holding ourselves to the highest standards, etc – so it should come as no surprise that this lead to additional recording, re-recording, mixing and re-mixing…but it’s not just my usual manias; the fact is it was decided that we’d stop at nothing to fully realize Scott’s vision successfully, without cutting corners, sparing no expense (aka “WHW style”) – and I absolutely took that aspect to heart. I personally felt the responsibility to deliver in every role I served so as to insure the end result was not a watered-down version, an approximation, or some outside producer’s vision, instead “the album he always wanted to make.” I believe now that we have achieved this. When all is said and done, It’s truly been an honor to work with my buddies Scott, Jim, Jonny, and Charley – each of whom kicked ass in their own right on this one – bringing this to life, and involving Kevin and Gustavo from the “WHW team” made it that much more gratifying for me. It was a no-brainer to re-align with Enrico and Cruz Del Sur Music as well considering the direct ties to TTD and WHW, along with albums in the same vein from our mates Slough Feg, Widow, Bible Of The Devil on the label. Call it a homecoming if you will.

I’ve been involved with every aspect of “Walpyrgus Nights” perhaps more so than with any of my own albums – I mean like those, I know every note and detail intimately – yet, in this case my hands were on the console, twisting the knobs, adjusting faders, zooming deep into the waveforms – I’ve literally heard these songs hundreds of times…and what I wanted to convey here is I still LOVE them; it should speak volumes that I actually still want to hear them absolutely fucking cranked and truly enjoying every freaking minute of them after hearing them more times than I can count. And THAT is what mattered to all of us the most – satisfying our own ambitions for this record and hearing exactly what we wanted to in the end – on OUR stereos. Call it self-serving if you want, but I sincerely believe that this enthusiasm, this heart  translates to tape – and can only hope that everyone else out there feels that through their own speakers. \m/”

Tom Phillips

April 4, 2017

WALPYRGUS stream “Somewhere Under Summerwind” from forthcoming album “Walpyrgus Nights”

We’ve all heard the stories of legendary antics and debauchery backstage at Metal concerts – and while that is exciting to read or gossip about, very often there’s another conversation that happens back there, on the tour bus, or at a local backyard BBQ party over some beers – while you’re hanging out with fellow musicians you respect, blasting a classic Maiden, Lizzy, or Priest album – it’s almost inevitable that someone says “we should jam together sometime” and while this may be well-intentioned or naively inspired, it seldom comes to fruition. WALPYRGUS is an exception.

When these veterans of Twisted Tower Dire, While Heaven Wept, Daylight Dies, and Viper (amongst a long list of many others) broached this subject, it actually came to fruition with a very real mutual ambition and respect for both each others’ talents and the musical influences that made them who they are.
When you hear those passages recalling the aforementioned Maiden, Lizzy, Priest, Fate, etc…it’s truly coming from the hearts of musicians who have been performing this kind of music their entire lives.
The eponymous demo-turned-EP confirmed that these guys were serious but was really only a litmus test merely hinting at what was to come; their debut album “Walpyrgus Nights” represents the full realization of the potential of this dangerous meeting of Metal minds. Hook after hook, cascading guitar harmonies, anthemic soaring vocals, epic unexpected twists and turns abound, this 8 song opus is truly a genuinely inspired, wild, and I daresay fun ride through the annals of classic Hard Rock and early Metal with a distinct personality.
This effort gradually matured over a span of no less than five years and recorded in a variety of locations over the course of two intense years under the guidance of Tom Phillips (While Heaven Wept mastermind) was mixed by longtime collaborator Kevin “131” Gutierrez (Raven, Deceased, Believer) and features the artwork of Gustavo Sazes (Morbid Angel, Arch Enemy, Firewind).

So when the when the stars are right and you’re alone, take a journey, lock the world tight and prepare yourself for the tales of demons, spectres, and witches rising on Walpyrgus Nights!

“Walpyrgus Nights” will be released on compact disc, vinyl (featuring a 56-page comic book with lyrics!) and digital on June 9, 2017.

PRE-ORDER HERE:

Tracklist:
1. The Dead Of Night
2. Somewhere Under Summerwind
3. Dead Girls
4. Lauralone
5. Palmystry
6. She Lives
7. Light Of A Torch
8. Walpyrgus Nights

Musicians:
Jonny Aune – Vocals
Scott Waldrop – Guitars
Charley Shakelford – Guitars
Jim Hunter – Bass
Peter Lemieux – Drums
Tom Phillips – Keyboards, Guitars

16 September to 16 October Cruz del Sur VINYL SALE


Cruz del Sur Music is offering a special Autumn sale running from the 16th of September to the 16th of October 2013 ONLY on a bunch of selected vinyl releases. Please visit our store to place your orders and enjoy this unique 50%discount on some of our best releases of the past year!! Do not hesitate to order as this offer won’t be replicated for quite a while, folks!! Grab this unique chance to own some of the greatest, most critically acclaimed Cruz del Sur vinyl releases to stock up your record collections!!

Some of the titles on sales are:

PHARAOH “Be Gone” Gatefold LP + 7″ at 8.50 Euros Only

PHARAOH “Bury the Light” Gatefold White or Clear LP at 6.50 Euros Only

WHILE HEAVEN WEPT “Triumph:Tragedy:Transcendence” Gatefold Orange Vinyl LP with Poster at 6 Euros Only

TWISTED TOWER DIRE “Make It Dark” LP with 12 page luxury booklet at 7.50 Euros only

DARK FOREST “Dawn of Infinity” LP at 6.50 Euros Only


THE LORD WEIRD SLOUGH FEG “s/t” Gatefold Black Vinyl LP at 6.50 Euros Only


VISIGOTH “Final Spell” Red Vinyl MLP at 6.00 Euros Only


MAGISTER TEMPLI “Lucifer Leviathan Logos” Gatefold SILVER or BLACK Vinyl LP at 8.50/7.00 Euros Only


VOID MOON “On the Blackest of Nights” Gatefold Blue or Black Vinyl LP at 8.00/6.50 Euros Only