German celtic metallers Suidakra have been making folk-infused, pagan metal for 14 years now. But unless you are immersed and enmeshed in the underground pagan scene, you've probably never crossed their path. Needless to say, staying together for nearly a decade and a half is nothing to scoff at.

"We are best friends and love what we do," guitarist and vocalist Arkadius told Noisecreep. "It's not a job for us and we have a lot of fun. We keep the business s--- out of the band and off the band's time, even though it's necessary, so we can concentrate on the music and having fun or you get disappointed with those aspects. We are happy we have our label and management to keep that s--- away from us. That's their job."

That allows Suidakra to focus on the task at hand. While pagan metal is all the rage right now, Suidakra aren't so stringent in maintaining the subgenre's parameters. "I think that a lot of people feel a special connection to the pagan sound because of their roots," Arkadius said. "Out of Germany and other countries, metal fans are interested in history and they like stories to escape from reality. Sometimes it's the lyrics. Sometimes it's the music itself.

"Amon Amarth from Sweden are a good example. The music is melodic death metal. The music is not Viking. The music has the Viking feel from the lyrics, and they sing and perform in a Viking-like way. Other bands like Korpiklaani? They use old ancient instruments, so pagan metal is different from band to band."

Arkadius said that his band does not see themselves as typically pagan. "When we started in 1997, we had a folk element but no one spoke about Viking or Pagan. We wanted to have the opportunity to use this folk element, but only as an element. That is the reason why we don't walk on stage with armor. That is not us. It was an influence from the first day, as much as death, speed and thrash metal. The main point is combining pagan folk is really the lyrics. We want to entertain like the ancient people did: sitting by the fire, telling stories."

The band's ninth album, 'Crogacht,' combines melodic death metal with Irish folk with bagpipes, banjo, tin whistles and a sixteen-member choir.

More From Noisecreep