1. Can you tell us a little bit about the band for those that have never heard of you before?
The band was created in 1999 by its permanent members Troll and Jetra (at the moment they are the only from the first line-up). Having left St.Petersburg Viking metal band “Nomans land”, I, wishing to play more folk music, came across Jetra, who sang and played Irish whistle. I offered her to make a funny folk band based on metal rock. Later we named the style “Beer folk” that defined our material exactly.
2. How would you describe your musical sound?
The rhythmic base of our music was taken from metal but we often play using little guitar distortion or sometimes without it at all. Combining such way with tunes different from typical European folk metal, we get quite fresh, emotional and catchy sound.
3. What is the meaning behind the band's name?
Troll Bends Fir’s Russian name “Troll Gnyot Yel” sounds very close to Scandinavian languages, it’s original and dynamic. It just came to mind somehow and we realized that it would be the band’s name.
4. How would you describe the lyrical content of the music?
The heroes of our lyrics live in pagan Scandinavia and in Europe of the Middle Ages. Some songs tell funny stories happened to characters in taverns and woods due to drinking too much amber nectar. Other ones are praise for hop and beer philosophy. Actually, it’s not easy to find more beer band than we are!
5. What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and how would you describe your stage performance?
I can’t think of one particular show because we like to perform live and do it often. When we’re on tour we can play both in a small club without even support bands, where you see faces of happy fans just in meter from yours, and at main Russian festivals or cities’ beer festivals, where there’re tens of thousands of people and a huge crowd jumps to our music. What do I prefer? I enjoy all of them… We use several concert costumes of different kinds: Scottish themed costumes, beer monks and ones with leather armors of brewers.
6. Are there any plans for a U.S tour?
Well, it’s hard to say if we have plans. We’d love to come there and according to many feedback's on our Myspace profile there’s an interest to music like ours in the USA. However, we started promoting ourselves outside Russia a short time ago, so we’ll live and see how things work out.
7. The band has a lot of beer drinking songs, what are some of your favorite beers that you drink.
Our favorite sort of beer “with a perfect taste, much, not expensive and better paid by organizers”! Haha
8. How has your music been received so far by folk metal fans worldwide?
As I mentioned before, we get lots of positive feedback's via Myspace from many countries, even such distant from Russia as Brasilia and Japan.
9. Out off all the albums that the band has recorded so far, which one are you the most satisfied with?
We’re the most satisfied with our upcoming album, we’re recording at the moment… We like a lot what we have already nailed!
10. How would you describe your musical progress over the years and what direction do you see the music heading into on future releases?
As for me, our music hasn’t changed, I enjoy making it as I used to in the beginning, let the others judge it. I think we’ll keep on moving in the same direction.
11. What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your music and what are you listening to nowadays?
Can’t say right away… but there’re some Russian bands influenced by our music!
12. What role does Slavic and Norse paganism play in the music?
An active role. To be honest, though we’re patriots, pagan Scandinavia as an art symbol is more attractive.
13. What are some of your interests outside of music?
My hobby is tourism, drinking, my wife and collecting beer mugs, festival T-shirts (certainly, with our participation), gifts from our fans. I have no idea about other members but, probably, almost the same. At least, our bass player is really fond of drinking :)
14. Any final words or thoughts?
“Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy” (B. Franklin) I totally agree with that! Cheers!