Whereas South America (first and foremost Brazil) has been very active in giving birth to great new bands, especially of the Thrash Metal variety, Doom has still pretty much stayed underground on the continent. So Capilla Ardiente from Chile could be seen as some kind of oddity. However, they definitely have a history, as bass player Claudio Botarro explains: "The concept of Capilla Ardiente dates back to 2004 or 2005 when I was part of the band Poema Arcanvs (who played a mixture of Doom/Death Metal) and of which Felipe was our roadie. The fact is that every time we travelled to play in other cities we both ended up drinking on the bus while listening to traditional Doom Metal, Heavy Metal and Thrash, and asking each other 'when will we start a band like this?' Because at that time both of us lived in different cities, we started sending each other riffs and arrangements via e-mail, giving shape to the early compositions, while parallel to that Felipe began his band Procession and I quit Poema Arcanvs for personal issues and obvious musical differences. After a couple of years, Felipe came to live in my city, so we started working seriously, giving structure to the songs and recruiting musicians who could be part of the band to record and play live, but given the non-existent traditional Doom scene and musicians who have what it takes, we chose to follow just the both of us and invite friends from other bands (and styles) to record the drums and guitar solos for our first EP 'Solve et Coagula'." Which is now out on High Roller Records. How would Claudio describe the style of Capilla Ardiente? Is it old school Doom Metal? "I must say more 'traditional' than old school", is his answer. "Because even if our music is deeply rooted in the ways of the old, we are a new band. I think 'old school influenced' can be a good description, too." So this is where the influences of the band come from: "I think that Candlemass and Solitude Aeturnus are our main influences. Sorcerer and Solstice too, plus early Voi Vod, Motörhead, and '80's Heavy/Doom/Thrash Metal the most." Claudio is from Santiago and has no good news about the current Metal scene in Chile: "Well, most of the Chilean scene has become a bag full of shit ... Maybe that's why we haven't tried to play live. Let's see ... I started playing with my old band back in 1995, and I have seen how metalheads have lost their compromise to Metal. The older bangers only talk of the 'good ol' days' but know/do nothing regarding the support of newer bands. The kids are just fotolog bangers who are into mp3's and gossip and never go to gigs, or buy music. And guys from my generation are mostly into work/wife/kids. As you see, most of the so called scene is crap. On the other hand, we have the underground 'evil Metal' scene, which is way more committed and solid, there are serious labels like Proselitysm and Kuravilu and really good bands, like Atomic Aggressor, Force of Darkness and Unaussprechlichen Kulten. About record stores, I can speak only for Santiago. Here, they sell music at expensive prices and mostly of well-known bands, so if you want to buy good or underground Metal at honest prices, you better buy it through distros. The only record store that I recommend is 'Templo', owned by the guy behind Proselitysm, Death Messiah. For ancient vinyl, you have to try your luck on a couple of flea markets we have. Lots of bands have been touring Chile in 2009 (in fact, in a few more hours I will be seeing Venom), this year I have watched Iron Maiden, Sodom, Carcass, Dismember, Destroyer 666, G.B.H., Hirax, Mortal Sin (and missed Heaven and Hell! Fuck!). So you see, there have been lots of international gigs ... And this is when more 'Metal' people show their support."
So this is probably one of the reasons why Capilla Ardiente are not a live act: "Because of the aforementioned almost inexistent traditional Doom scene here, we have been more focused on making music and record it than on playing for people wanting us to be Opeth or My Dying Bride. Only time will tell if we will ever appear live ..." So for now people will have to be content with the record "Solve et Coagula" (although the title is in Spanish, they are singing in English). The cover of which is really great. Claudio takes this as a compliment: "I'm glad you like it! The artwork has been done by me. I'm a graphic designer and I have the paradoxical work at the 'Fundación música de Chile' (Chilean music foundation) of designing album covers for musicians totally not into Metal (think Folklore, Pop, Reggae, and other terrible noises to your ears!), using a lot of computer graphics and stuff, so, it's really relaxing and gratifying to have the chance to draw again and use the computer at a minimum level."