Sight of Emptiness are the first melodic death metal act from Costa Rica. The six-piece are currently shopping their recently completed album, Instincts, to interested labels. Guest appearances include Christian Älvestam (AtomaA, Miseration), Glen Drover (Megadeth), Ralph Santolla (ex-Deicide, ex-Obituary), Ole Halvard Sveen (Lengsel), Whitfield Crane (Ugly Kid Joe), and the Costa Rican Minister of Culture, Manuel Obregón.
Introduce Sight of Emptiness to the world, please.
SoE: At the very beginning (2005), there was just Eduardo on vocals and Rod on drums making plans and coming up with a suitable name for the project. It all started as the first ever melodic death metal band in our country, influenced mostly by European bands. We evolve with every following release and lineup change to a sound that we consider our own. Rafael (guitar) and Esteban (bass) entered to write and release the second record (Absolution of Humanity – 2010) and finally, Andrés (guitar) & Gabriel (electronics) are the newest addition to the band. We all gave our best to write our 3rd and soon to be release new album Instincts. So far, we have been able to play in all sorts of venues and events in our homeland, anything from bars, small clubs to big festivals, stadiums and sharing the stage with Megadeth, At The Gates, Amon Amarth, Accept, Obituary and Living Sacrifice. We also played in Europe, including Bloodstock Open Air UK in 2007 (main stage) and 2012. Other memorable dates include venues at UK, Iceland, Portugal, Spain, Honduras and Nicaragua, and we are really hungry for more.
All of your albums are self-released. Is that more necessity than label interest or is there a bit of uncertainty towards Costa Rican metal bands from metal labels?
SoE: I guess all of the above. We understand that currently there are no Costa Rican bands signed to a major international metal label, so there are no precedents whatsoever and we might be perceived as a gamble. With record sales dropping in the digital era it is understandable how labels have to be hesitant, so we´ll just keep working harder and harder, because we are aware that we still have a lot to prove. We remain very positive, believing that some of them may come to realize the true value of this band when they clear their minds of any pre conceived notions, and give a fair chance to this new album, and let their ears find out the potential that a top Swedish producer and very well-known singers and guitar players from U.S., Sweden and Norway already felt on these new songs. This album has a 100 percent professional production and it was financed with great sacrifice by us, thanks to the unexpected great sales of the previous two albums, merchandise and tickets to our shows, so we can’t help but wonder what would happen to this new album with the right label handling promotion and distribution. We are sure that even Sepultura struggled more than other bands just for being from Brazil at the beginning, but they were able to prove to right the A&R who signed them and after that their uncommon nationality for a metal band became a very positive thing.
Tell us about “Paradox.” Sounds more developed than your previous material.
SoE: The evolution of “Paradox” and the rest of the songs on our new album are the result of bringing on board an experienced Swedish producer (Thomas “Plec” Johansson) to take this to a new level. On the second album, we started to stretch our boundaries and add everyone’s influences. Now on our third album Instincts, with the current lineup, we decided not to care about genres and just focus on quality songwriting more than ever to find our musical personality. We are still a metal band and always will be, but we will leave tags and genres for music critics.
I hear the Costa Rican Minister of Culture, Manuel Obregón, plays on it. How’d you get Mr. Obregón involved?
SoE: The piano and Marimba you hear at the end was his contribution to this song. It all started at the backstage of a festival we played in early 2012 that included rock, funk, salsa, and pop bands. We were the only metal act and after our set he came to congratulate us. The best thing was that he proved to be really open-minded and admitted not knowing or understanding much about metal, but when he saw us play he perceived great musicianship and energy. We were so honored and humbled by his words that we kept in touch after that and when the invitation came, he accepted. There’s a beautiful Central American ethnic rhythm known as Tambito, and we decided to include it in “Paradox,” for it was one of the very first songs to be written for this album. It was an amazing and satisfying experience to get to play and record with him. Words can’t describe how pleased we are with the outcome.
When does the new full-length drop? How can metalheads get it?
SoE: The master of the album is ready, as well as the artwork; we are working on two new professional videos as we speak and on lots of other cool stuff to make sure we can deliver a great product to everybody interested in checking out a hard working band with a unique and solid sound, that doesn’t follow any trends or is afraid to experiment with different sounds. Get in touch with us if you are interested in releasing the album, signing the band, or booking shows. You won’t regret it. We won’t let you down. Anyways, if we don’t hear from anybody in a certain period of time, we would go ahead as usual and release it ourselves as professional as we can and make sure to cover the whole word through our official store on www.sightofemptiness.com.
** Sight of Emptiness’ new album, Instincts, is out soon via the band’s own distro channels if they don’t get a label deal. It’ll be available HERE shortly in such an event.
** Visit and LIKE Sight of Emptiness on Facebook. Click HERE.