Norway, the land of Death Metal & Mountains. But wait a second – Matterhorn? A Norwegian Band called after a Swiss Mountain? Find out more about our December Fresh Act Matterhorn and the man behind the band, Tommy Sebastian Halseth.
Hello Tommy how are you doing? Thank you for your time. First of all, please introduce the band, where are you from and how did the project start?
Hi, I’m doing fine! Thanks for taking interest in my band! Matterhorn comes from Trondheim, a city in the middle of Norway. As a result of being a big part of the music scene in Trondheim and Norway. In bands such as Atrox, Godsend, Griffin, Manes, Wattamezz and In The Woods. Matterhorn was initially formed by me (Tommy Sebastian Halseth) in 2015. Due to a number of reasons Matterhorn was put on ice, but fully emerged in 2017.
If I understand correctly you are doing this project all alone, how will it work for live shows? Do you plan to form a band in future just for live shows?
For the moment I`m doing Matterhorn all by myself, that includes writing the songs, arrangements, vocals, lyrics ( with Torstein Parelius from Manes) and promotion. In the recording studio I do a collaboration with Rhys Marsh, who does all the instruments, the recording and the mix.
I think my songs will work perfectly in a live show, because of the dynamics and sustain variety of the musical performance. Alternatively I prefer to pick the right musicians for a live show, musicians that can add a new dimension in the live environment.
How would you describe the music that you are playing?
I think the only label suited for Matterhorn would be “Alternative”, because of the musical bled of all kinds of genres.
The music has a lot of depth, what message do you want to deliver to the people with your songs?
Thanks, I think so as well, depth in music is very important for me, then you can go back and listen to the same track several times, and discover new fragments of the song. I definitely would like people to embrace more diverse and intricate songs, but at the same time appreciate melody and ambiance.
Why did you choose the name Matterhorn? How did you get the idea for the name? Quite unusual for a band from Norway to choose a Swiss mountain as band name.
…..A cragged rock tooth, ranging into the heavens…. Standing alone on the horizon…..
When I read this, I knew immediately that the name of the band had to be Matterhorn.
And this was so much more than just the Swiss mountain!
I felt the mystic and suspense I could build around these words, to create the Matterhorn universe.
Have you actually ever visited the Matterhorn area?
I have been to Switzerland a couple of times, but never in the Matterhorn area.
But maybe someday, I will visit the great mountain.
You’ve got two songs ready which can be listened to on SoundCloud (https://soundcloud.com/matter_horn ), are you currently working on other songs and do you have plans to release an EP or CD?
For the moment I am working with a couple of new songs, in fact I have material for a whole album. Currently I’m looking for a label who can support me, and I will release a full-length album during 2018, and this will of course be released on vinyl.
Your project Matterhorn is quite new, you started it in 2015 but this year you started to work on it as a fulltime project. What have you been doing before Matterhorn and how different are the former bands you worked with to this new one?
My former bands are Atrox, Godsend, Griffin, Manes, Wattamezz and In The Woods.
In Matterhorn I decide what to do musically, so that’s different to my former bands, where we made the decisions together as a team. It is liberating to make all decisions by myself, but also completely time demanding, to constantly rely on myself and my opinions, so I got my head on the chopping block if anything goes wrong, no one to blame, but myself.
You have been part of the Norwegian and especially of the Trondheim Metal scene for many years, is there one special moment with any of the bands that is always on your mind, something you always like to remember? If so what is it?
When I was the singer for Griffin, we got the chance to join Mayhem on tour.
I will never forget the grand declaration of war tour, back in 2000, when we played our way through Europe with Mayhem, Red Harvest and Aeternus. This was a rock n roll roller-coaster ride, that is hard to forget?
Do you have plans for a video clip in near future?
In fact I have one video clip out on youtube, it is for the song “Aorta”
Now I’m planning a new video, for my second song Bleeding Under Water: Aorta Pt 2, soon we start filming this piece.
I am very pleased with the result on the video for Aorta, so I am using the same guy ( Jan Ole Sundli) who did the first video, to create the new one as well.
What do you think is the internet a positive development for music business or a negative one?
I can only speak for myself and how I use the internet and all the digital platforms.
Back in the days we used to send letters to promote our music, tape trading it was called.
But now, it’s so easy to spread the word of your music, you can do it by a click of your mouse.
I think this is positive in a way, you erase all the borders, and the focus is strictly for the music.
I try to use the internet in a clever way, to promote Matterhorn, by creating a suspense around my band. I use the digital platforms to release my songs, this way I get a broader catchment for my music.
What do you want to reach with your band?
My goal now is to write more songs, and to release my album some time in 2018.
And of course, spread my songs to more people who appreciate the magic of music.
When the time is right, I would love to try these songs live.
Thank you very much for your time and all the best for the futureJ
Thank you, most appreciated!