“The Dead of the World” is the title of the sophomore album by German black metallers, Ascension . Its cover artwork proposes some interesting dichotomies. For example, it’s visually-stark but highly detailed. Also, the dominant element in the composition (a moth) and the band’s logo exude a cryptic magnetism that makes you wonder if there’s a hidden message behind these elements that only die-hard fans can understand.
Metal Band Art briefly interviewed the band about the making of the artwork and its possible secret meanings.
Who came up with the idea for this cover concept and what inspired it?
Ascension: The initial idea for the cover came from the band. It is hard to say what truly inspired it in the end. It was a picture that somehow popped up in the mind from one moment to the other. The album title was already there and while contemplating over it, we couldn´t find the right way to translate it into a picture. And then, some night, without warning, it somehow found it´s way to us. It was like with other things concerning the band as well. From thereon we were looking for someone who would be able and willing to make a drawing of that idea.
Who did you choose for the creation of the artwork?
Ascension: The cover was done by David Glomba (Teitan Arts), a very talented Slovakian artist from whom we will, most likely, hear a lot more in the future. The idea to ask David came from Sven, our label boss at World Terror Comittee. The two were already working together on another release. We had some talks and it became evident quite soon that we had to work together.
Is there a special meaning behind this moth featured on the cover?
Ascension: The moth on the front cover, as a symbol, can stand for a lot of things. We would leave it to the imagination of each and everyone what he/she sees in it. What we find interesting is the idea of a rotten and decayed moth as a thing of both, utter beauty and abomination. The cover therefore draws a line between those who have a true and sincere interest or fascination in and for death and the things corresponding to it, and those who are just disgusted and who are not able to find the beauty in decay. Moreover, the cover is not a drawing of „some“ moth, it is an Acherontia Atropos, a death´s-head hawkmoth. In some regions of the Earth it is said to be a foreboding of death whenever it appears. And last but not least, the moth of course is always a strong symbol to put into perspective the role of man in relation to the greater things that are at work beyond this world.
Last but not least, the new band’s logo seems to have cryptic symbolic overtones. Could you tell us more about it.
Ascension: The new logo you are referring to is a sigil. The quality of a sigil lies, first and foremost, in it´s magical purpose and force. The sigil is obviously a thing of great power for us.
“The Dead of the World” is now available via World Terror Committee and by Season of Mist in North America.