As promised we are republishing all intreviews due to VampireFreaks.com’s social network shut down. This was done June, 5th 2018.
"Tragic black" has been around for almost 20 Years right? When did you really start? Like before the instruments were bought? When the idea came in? And how did you pick the band name? How many names did you guys think of? Is there a meaning behind the bands name?
vISION: I was in high when I thought of the band name while driving around with a handful of friends talking about what would make a good goth band name, and by chance I thought of Tragic Black. With magic and will, a year later Vyle & I made that idea a reality. So yeah, it was a idea in 1999 and then Vyle & I started working together. He would come up with cool keyboard riffs and I would write lyrics and vocals. Our first gig was Halloween of 2000. That’s pretty much when we consider our beginning. There are some bands with polarity in their names, a light and dark side (think Black Sabbathd , Christian Death, Marilyn Manson, etc) and when I came up with Tragic Black, it felt like destiny. A double negative. Something those of us on the dark side may gravitate towards. Tragic Black also has a spiritual side to it, with a distaste towards religion, especially Christianity and the Mormonism that’s so prevalent here in SLC Utah. We felt religion was a block, a Wall in front of the true nature of spirit. So we’ve always had that blasphemy embedded in us.
Vyle: Oh the flood of memories that washed over me as I read through this question :) sweet Nostalgia :heart Vivid impressions of hazy recollections fueled on alcohol and dreams. One from one of the first time seeing vISION and his entourage in an SLC Club named Confetti's before we had met: Elegant and terrifying, an anorexically-dreadful vampire surrounded in a murder of crows, and party-going porcelain people. In a city run by the church, he was a spiritual prophet of the faithless orphans of God's followers.
He fed on music with an insatiable hunger, and burning spirits coursed through his veins.
With glasses of something red with some body to it, he played albums upon albums of his musical influences. One of the first was Xavier Haight's Malign: Shatter and Impale. I had studied and performed music throughout my younger days, but the affect that this album had on me opened a Need to create music that I could not refuse. He shared with me his vision of Tragic Black, and within days we were jamming. Sixx seasons later, we were playing our first show.
Morticia: Vyle you are such a poet!
What type of music genre is Tragic black ?
vISION: We were introduced as a deathrock band at our first gig in 2000, but we have done a lot musically. It depends on the year and who was in the band at the time.
Photo by: Wendy Karr
How many band members are there and what are their stances?
vISION: We are a three piece currently; vISION - lead vocal, programming, Vyle - Bass, backing vocal & programming, Stich - Guitar, backing vocal & programming.
How many band members have you had through the years?
vISION: Vyle and I are the core of this band, but we’ve worked with 11 people over the last almost 18 years (Vision, Vyle, Stich, Ashe, Toni, Hex, Seputus, Jesse James, Filthy McWhiskey, Johno Varoz, Kyle Leary).
What has been your biggest challenge as a band through the years?
vISION:The challenge is to always end up with music you enjoy making and performing live & we have met that challenge.
Do you have a band mascot?
vISION:Spikey Bats, as featured in our logo, the “Bat Cross”.
What has been your favorite place to play? If you could play at any venue anywhere, where would it be?
vISION: Wave Gotik Treffen (WGT) in Leipzig Germany, which we’ve been lucky to perform at 3 times (2006, 2008 & 2016). If we could play anywhere, I’d love to headline a festival like Mera Luna, Whitby or WGT. We have dreams of playing festivals in Japan, and South America. We are very grateful for all the opportunities we’ve had but in no way have reached a place where we felt like we’ve done all we set out to do.
Vyle: WGT is my all-time favorite, and my first choice of anywhere to play, but I would love to play Tokyo Dark Castle.
Who writes the lyrics? And the music?
vISION: I write the lyrics. In general each of us contributes to each song with what instrument we play. So guitar player writes the guitar and so on. On our last cd NOSTALGIA I wrote most of the drum beats and a lot of the keyboards. When we were a live band we would write songs at practice, jamming them out until we had a song. Now that we use a back track again for drums/keyboards, we write those ideas based on guitar or bass ideas, or we write guitar and bass to a back track idea.
What are your band practices like?
vISION: a good time with great friends! I don’t see many other people besides my band members, who are like family. The best friends I have We are committed to Tragic Black and our practices can be personally legendary, better than a lot of shows. We really put a lot into this band.
Do you have a Motto for the band? Or a superstitions?
vISION: This is a old lyric that I feel still applies “To bring in the darkness, is to show them the light”.
Vyle: It's been said that our performances cause weather patterns to form in the area.
Photo by: Wendy Karr
Does the band have anything new coming out? And when is your next show?
vISION: Next gigs are back to back. July 20 in SLC w/ Neon Kross & Kill Kouture. Then July 21 to headline at Colorado Goth Fest.
Dead Bettie: Colorado goth fest! Yassss how exciting! We loveDj BatBoy!!!
Who has done the cover art for your Albums and logos?
vISION: I drew the logos such as the Tragic Black band name logo and the blasphemous Bat Cross. Our friend Jordan Livingston did art for a lot of our albums.
Morticia: 3 shotgun questions with Stich
What do you play in the band? Do you sing too sometimes?
Stich: My name is Stich and I play the guitar. I also do backing vocals.
Do you have a favorite song or album from your band?
Stich: My favorite album would probably be Nostalgia. It is the newest album and it was wrote with my best friends. At the time of the recording I was on a bad place and the album helped me pull out of the depression.
What do you do outside of the band?
Stich: I love to paint, draw, make clothing..ext I love to do anything artistic and expressive.
Morticia: Here is a music video guys, must watch!
Fan question: Where any of you guys in other bands before?
vISION: not before TB, but since I’ve done and still do a few, active; SUBSTAINED (new blackmetal band with Stich, a former TB member Kyle Leary & good friend Ryan Saxton), Precariat & Spectre Theatre. Inactive; Corvid & Disruptive Creatures. Stich had joined TB but then moved to the UK & formed All Gone Dead.
Vyle:Tragic Black has been my first band, but I have been involved with Corvid, Seed Loader, Zombiance, and Redemption.
Fan question: What are Vyle's music influences?
Vyle: My musical influences range manically from She Past Away to Crash Diet, but truly I draw as much inspiration from dreams, and emotions as I do from music. Some of the music I have been listening to recently are Visage, Sub Version, Gary Numan, Brick Bats, Rudimentary Peni, Skinny Puppy, Marilyn Manson, and Type O Negative.
Fan question: vISION are you going to transition tragic black to metal, I hear metal in some of the new stuff. Or was that just for fun?
vISION: Our latest album NOSTALGIA has a very goth sound, but the previous album (The Eternal Now) had a more metal sound, as we were a five piece band with a drummer, two guitarists who came from the metal scene, bass & vocals then. Our current direction is more goth, post punk kind of stuff. I do play metal in other bands (Substained, blackmetal & Precariat, thrash /stoner).
Fan question: Where do you see the band in 5 years from now?
vISION: Have new music out before then, and playing more gigs around the world, especially Europe.
Closing interview questions
Any last words? Or quotes you'd like to leave us with?
vISION: Thanks for yer support!
Do you have any advice for bands that are new or forming?
vISION: Make Music you like & make it with friends you like to be around.
Photo by: Josh Wee
You can find Tragic Black here:
Cover photo credit by: Ailyn Regala