“Mia Wallace, on Blabbermouth, today [paraphrased]: Niryth’s songs are all mine, they reflect more than 20 years of my ideas.
Also Wallace, in the very same statement on Blabbermouth [paraphrased]: Niryth’s songwriting credits have been registered by Fischer and me with GEMA as 50% Wallace/50% Fischer (music) and 100% Fischer (lyrics).”
So which is it? Is Niryth all Wallace’s music, written “in more than 20 years”, or is it really a collaboration in which I ‒ according to her very own statement, not least! ‒ have written half of the music and all of the lyrics? A collaboration, whose actual songwriting shares, as listed above, have been properly and truthfully registered with GEMA and the band’s music publisher in Berlin by Wallace herself, me, and Niryth’s manager?
Well, in reality not only did I write all of the lyrics, I also co-wrote all of the songs (some of them are primarily mine, some primarily hers). At the time, mainly in 2018, we seemingly worked in creative harmony, and Wallace’s contributions were indeed extremely valid and strong. In fact, this was exactly why I ended up playing in two bands with her! In addition to the songs for which she wrote the majority of the riffs (for example, Covenant or Wounds I Bear), she also created some truly exceptional harmony lines. But the very same applies reciprocally to the songs for which I provided the majority of the composition (for example, Violently Sleeping or The Spell), and which reflect 39 years of my ideas. And nobody here ever denied this or had the slightest intention to do so in the future.
I co-founded Niryth with Wallace in a restaurant near Milano Malpensa airport in northern Italy, on the evening of August 27, 2017. The idea of a band with multiple basses, as I had it in my first band Grave Hill in 1982, was mine, for example. The project arose from shared thoughts about a new band for Wallace. After discussing a number of possible concepts, I asked to be a full part of it from the very beginning. The name of the band, incidentally, was created some time later, by one of Wallace’s friends, a young woman by the name of Giulia Dulio, in Arona, Italy, late on Saturday, November 18, 2017.
Most of the first handful of songwriting sessions in Italy were conducted at the home of Triumph Of Death drummer Alessandro Comerio, who was an early member of Niryth and recorded these initial sessions. I provided for Niryth’s songwriting locations situated in Switzerland as well as for the rehearsal space in Zurich, Switzerland, and I gave Wallace numerous valuable instruments and guitar/bass effects as gifts; these were subsequently not only used for the songwriting and rehearsals but also for Wallace’s other projects, until today. I did most of the arrangement work on our songs, converting them from charmingly disordered demos to recordable material. In fact, such arrangement work would continue until the final vocal recording sessions.
Drummer Pidi Leuenberger, the successor of Alessandro Comerio, joined Niryth on Sunday, June 3, 2018.
Prowling Death Records Ltd., the UK-based record company I run with my manager, Antje Lange, financed the entire Niryth recording session from August 20, 2018, to February 22, 2019, and also paid for the mixing, mastering, and the associated expenses of all participants. As her boyfriend and band member, I had already frequently paid from my own pocket for Wallace’s travel (from and to Italy) and other expenses during the songwriting period, and I also provided for her accommodation.
I organized the studio recording sessions in Germany, I recorded approximately half of the music (approximately the other half was recorded as competently by Wallace) for all of these songs in the studio, I was present during every single recording session (from the drum recordings to the final mixing) while Wallace was only present for two full sessions (she also attended the drum recordings for one song), I co-produced the entire Niryth recording session from start to finish with Triptykon’s V. Santura (with Wallace co-producing whenever she was present). And V. Santura can corroborate all of these facts independently.
I provided the music industry contacts, I got Niryth a management, and together with Niryth’s management I got Niryth a licensing agreement with a renown label and with industry people I got interested in the project and have known for decades. Prowling Death Records also arranged and financed the flights, hotels, and listening sessions in Germany that led to this licensing agreement.
Prowling Death Records further arranged and financed three photo sessions for Niryth, including a major international one for the first Niryth release. Moreover, Prowling Death Records arranged for and financed the concept, art direction, and graphic designer for that first release.
And finally, I designed both Niryth’s logo and symbol and personally financed the graphic designer who converted my designs into professional print files.
But in spite all of these attestable facts, Niryth remains to be claimed solely as Wallace’s project!
Niryth started as a beautiful and possibly naively idealistic extension of the relationship Wallace and I shared during the time we were a couple. We knew, of course, that our romantic affiliation could end, and we felt that the music we created together in Niryth was so important to us that we agreed to continue the project on a professional level should this ever happen. And that’s what was attempted when we actually did split up. There are numerous successful examples for this in our scene, from Fleetwood Mac to Dead Can Dance. Unfortunately, by the end of the year, we had reached the end of the road, for a great many reasons (related and unrelated to our common private past), most of which can readily be corroborated by numerous witnesses.
In my letter of dissociation, dated December 11, 2019, I informed Wallace that we in Triumph Of Death unanimously and irrevocably felt we needed to continue the band with a different line-up, and Wallace was thus dismissed. But with regard to Niryth, I left the choice ‒ of whom of us would continue the project ‒ entirely to her. After a lengthy period of deliberation, Wallace decided to continue Niryth, and drummer Pidi Leuenberger and me left the project. We intended to form our own, different version of the band. Not to be in competition with Niryth, but because all three of us Niryth members had invested so much work, time, and money into this music (see above), and we felt a very strong attachment and confidence with regard to these songs.
The situation reminded me of the Sisters Of Mercy split in 1985, which resulted in the projects Sisterhood, The Mission, and The Sisters Of Mercy.
In 39 years as a member of the music industry, I have lived through many episodes that could be labelled implausible ‒ some of them pathetically caused by none other than me. But this is a first even for me: to be accused of stealing songs, a project. Songs of which every single one is fully co-written by Wallace and me. A project, not least, I co-founded from the very first minute.
In the aforementioned letter of dissociation, I proposed to Wallace that we remain professional and take the high road, refraining from any personal or derogatory public statements that would only serve to quickly take this to a despicable and defiled tabloid level. I have adhered to this proposal, and the content of this post is solely designed to provide some apparently indispensable information as to the inner workings of Niryth.”