Fauna are one of the most interesting black metal bands about today, with Rain getting a particularly high score in these quarters. I recently contacted the band in their stronghold in the Pacific Northwest to ask them about the meaning behind Rain, and any future plans the band had...

Why did you choose eco-friendly issues as the motivation for your music?

We would not consider the motivation for our project to be “eco-friendly issues.” The motivation for Fauna lies deep within our cellular memory, a knowing that transcends this historical moment, becoming a valiant determination to forge a pathway for humans to once again attain to the grandeur we were meant to embody. This devolution, an atavistic reawakening of the Soul to the wisdom in the Deep Past, can only occur within an animistic immersion in the field of Nature. The ecological underpinnings of our philosophical framework relate to the ineluctable interconnectedness of all Life, a deep and wrenching awareness of the fact that when the Others die, we die.

Do you take an interest in any other political issues besides the environment?

We don’t see the ecological, philosophical, or spiritual dimensions of Fauna as political. Again, I think that perhaps there exists some kind of misunderstanding as to our intent. Fauna is not a political animal. As individuals, we fought on the political battlefield for many years, ultimately experiencing an utter resignation in regards to the idea that politics can potentiate the transformation we see as necessary. Now, we live within the light of this despair, illuminating the illusory fallacy that the diseased heart of civilization can support life. You cannot reform what, in its very essence, deforms the fundamental quality of humanness. Domestication inherently destroys what is most valuable in us, and no political system can ever redress this. Importantly, we also reject the notion that only certain aspects of our existence are “political,” recognizing again the interconnected nature of phenomena and the impossibility of “issues” being extricated from their contexts. Everything, and nothing, is “political.”

That said, we feel it is important to emphasize the inherent beauty of any action which enacts or embodies a respect for Life. Our hearts will always go to those who take any action in defense of Earth.

You've obviously chosen a very aggressive form of music to express yourself. Why was this? Would you say anger is a motivation for you?

Rage. Yes. A burning ire lives within our hearts, the bitter taste of revulsion and despair, necessitating the psychic maelstrom of Fauna’s ecstasy. Anger, truly lived and integrated, kindles the brightest purificatory pyre, our offering to this wounded sphere. Fauna is an invitation, both to ourselves and to those who interact with us, to enter the organic recesses of our beings, throwing aside and trampling the conditioned responses to the world that drown us. These conditioned responses, expressions of the traumatized psyche that lives within us, are frequently misinterpreted as expressions of our animal nature. They are in actuality a manifestation of the animal’s frustrated movement towards wholeness and meaningful engagement. The unrealized quality of our interior being quails for a righting of what’s gone awry; this necessitates a spontaneous catharsis of destruction, the creation of a space for the animal within to be what it knows.

You definitely don't promote yourself or work with the music industry in the same way as many other black metal bands do... Why is this?

Firstly, to understand this dynamic you would need to know that Fauna is not a “band,” per se. We operate within an idiom that presupposes a certain approach to sound and to the presentation of one’s art to others, but we have never been interested in the paths already trodden. We are musicians, certainly, but this profession is secondary to our roles both as seekers and as shamans. Fauna is an effort to safeguard our own ascension, as well as to open up a world within which others may taste the transmutation of the Gray. The music industry tends not to support these goals.

You come from the same area as Wolves In The Throne Room. If you don't mind, could you tell us about any relationship between the two bands? How do you feel about another environmentally-motivated black metal band having success?

There is currently little relationship between the two projects, though we do share many affinities as individuals. An early incarnation of Fauna featured Aaron Weaver, the drummer of Wolves in the Throne Room, filling an essential role. We have also shared a stage with them on three occasions, and may well do so again in the future. Having originated from a similar place at a similar time, however, the two entities have taken different paths. We do not begrudge them their renown, certainly, though we do question the means employed. Importantly, we don’t necessarily see their popularity as “success,” and see a danger that the deeper process they strive towards may be waylaid. We support the individuals involved in Wolves in the Throne Room and the quest that guides them, and we look forward to the day when the paths we have taken may again converge.

Do you still follow the black metal scene? Are there any new bands that interest you?

Negura Bunget, while not a new band, are doing very innovative things within the Black Metal genre. Procer Veneficus is noteworthy, as is Underjordiska from Sweden. Njiqahdda has a compelling orientation towards exploring altered states of consciousness with the tool of Black Metal, and Spite Extreme Wing from Italy has won our attention with their commitment to philosophical rigor married to a metal aesthetic. Our close friends Sere & A Sombre Boreal, also known as Sowing Seeds in Times of Darkness, have done amazing work, the most heartening and enlightened ritual performance we’ve seen in some time.

Rain is obviously a one-song release. Does it have any particular concept?

Many concepts contributed to the unfolding of “Rain.” We are here telling the story of the evolution of humankind, from the primordial seas to the ochre-emblazoned caves we crawled into. This is a majestic myth, a stunning tale of heroism and humility, and is a guiding light for the return we undertake. This return forms another thematic motivation for the work: the flight of the human flame from the cage of civilization. A disavowal of modernity fuels the belated recognition of the dictates of our inner animal, namely to again rejoin the chorus of beings and find our way back into the threads of the Web.

Could you tell us a bit more about The Hunt, and any plans the band have in the near future?

The Hunt” is a mythic journey into our ancient past, an exploration of the transcendent wisdom of hunting in all its ramifications. An attainment to totemic consciousness, we worked with the skins, bones, spirits and meat of our ruminant brethren, enacting a psychic journey from the hunger of our modern catastrophe to the rejoining of our animal selves to the flesh of another through the rite of consummation.

Thus sated, we moved on to our 3rd Cycle, known as Avifauna. For this chapter we worked with the bodies and the metaphor of birds, weaving owl, seagull and falcon into our world as part of an ascensional rite of flight and transcendence. Our 4th Chapter, undertaken in MMVIII, took us further into the Red Light of the Earth, and was performed thrice on Cascadian soil.

The Hunt” has been reworked and will be re-released on Aurora Borealis on or around this summer’s Solstice. We will be recording and releasing our 3rd and 4th Cycles at some point in the coming years, and will be returning to the spiraling skyward that is “Avifauna” in live environments throughout the West Coast this year. We are also currently seeking assistance with a journey we wish to take on European soil this Fall.

It seems to me like a lot more people around the world are taking an interest in green issues. Do you think this is just a passing trend, or a genuine shift in people's attitudes?

The spell has been broken, and the unraveling can only accelerate herewith. We are grateful to the spirits of the Land, Sea and Sky for easing humanity back towards the truth of who we truly are.

Thanks a lot for taking the time to answer my questions, and the last word is yours! Is there anything you'd like to say to our readers?

We offer our thanks to you, Alex James Evans, for your interest in our project. Our last word:


Oneiria Bound,


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