Death’s Hand in Yours with Laurence Kerbov
Art: Timon Kokott
Legendarium is a Dutch/Italian metal band that has been making noise since 2017. The band consists of Laurence Kerbov on vocals, guitar, bass and keys and Stefano Vaccari on drums. Legendarium has experimented with many different musical styles, starting with a punk-influenced heavy metal sound. In the past year, the band has been most inspired by power metal and melodic death metal, which can be heard on the latest album, ‘Death’s Hand In Yours’.
Music means everything, and the Legendarium discography reflects that. I feel like Legendarium is a way for me to express my emotions and ideas without limitation. This is also why the music is so varied. I’m interested in many different kinds of music, and if I find something I enjoy, I try to incorporate that into our music.
Legendarium has quite a unique creative process since I (Laurence) live in The Netherlands and Stefano lives in Italy. Usually, I will write a song, record a demo version with basic programmed drums, and then send it to Stefano. He will write a drum part, record drums, and return it. Then I’ll mix and master the songs and publish them. This is the way the band has worked since the beginning, and since the new record ‘Death’s Hand In Yours’ is already our 4th full-length album, we’ve been through this process often enough that it’s like a well-oiled machine now, and I’m very happy with that.
The lyrics are inspired by high fantasy, sword, and sorcery. I enjoy writing lyrics set in a world like that, and it inspires me to imagine myself in such a setting. I usually gravitate towards the themes of apocalypse, corruption, war, and heroic defiance. I am fascinated by the idea of great forces that are almost incomprehensible, and there is no way anyone could ever conquer them. This can, for example, take the form of an immortal godlike being who has awakened underneath the Earth, like on our concept album ‘Reign In Repose’. I like exploring that idea and writing stories about how people in different positions would act if confronted with such forces.
There’s not a single source of inspiration I can point to. Different experiences inspire every riff and every lyric. The one constant in my inspiration is that I feel a constant drive to keep making music to get even better at it because improving as a musician is very rewarding.
I subscribe to no religion or ideology and don’t try to convey such a message in my music. I try to live my life the best I can and let my life experiences inspire my music. There’s a lot of escapism in the setting, but I make my songs about real-life topics and ideas that I encounter.
I saw the music video for Dragonforce’s ‘Through the Fire and Flames’ when I was 11, and I was instantly sold. From there, I learned about the classics (Metallica, Maiden, Megadeth etc.) and slowly became a massive metalhead. I also got really into punk, especially older bands like Bad Brains, The Damned, Ramones, and The Misfits, and you can still hear that punk influence in our music.
Music is the most important thing in my life because nothing makes me feel alive the way music does. I’m generally not spiritual, but music, like all art, has a spiritual quality. Tolstoy said that art is the transmission of feelings the artist has experienced. How we can transmit our feelings through music is one of the most important forms of human communication and is sacred. Being able to express feelings is what makes us human. And music is about nothing but emotion.