Keith Fay (Cruachan)
When I listened to Cruachanís latest effort "Pagan", I felt compelled to prepare a couple of questions, which were kindly answered by the bandís percussionist Keith Fay. This is what the storyteller from the land of the bards had to say.
Andreas SolvestrŲm (Within Y)
Good news for all the fans of the Goteborg Metal scene: A new band which answers to the name Within Y is out there, and has quite recently released their debut album "Extended Mental Dimensions".
Even though I had arranged this telephone Interview with Wade Black a few weeks ago, I have to admit that the frontman of the all-star band Leash Law managed to surprise me with his spontaneousness and his excitement over the release of his bandís debut album "Dogface".
I also talked with this charismatic artist about his previous employment with Crimson Glory, his short duty with Seven Witches and also about our mutual admiration for Heavy Metalís leading band, Judas Priest.
It somehow seems that the Underworld is the best place to make an Interview. This time I had the pleasure of 'interrogating' Martyn (Bass), and Ben, the gentle giant and frontman of Orange Goblin - reason being the release of their amazing new album 'Thieving From the House of God'. The couch on the backstage of the venue made them comfortable enough to explain how they almost got to the point of calling it a day, and why 'ThievingÖ' is considered to be the product of the bandís rebirth!
I was assigned to meet up with a band called Fireball Ministry, a band that Iíve never heard before. When I saw them on the stage of the London Asoria, the quite energetic quartet managed to blow me away with their dynamic performance. One hour after the end of the show I met up with Janice (bass) and John (drums), and this is exactly what was said.
I grew up listening to classic Death Metal, so it was quite a pleasure to Interview John McEntee, the axeman of both Funerus and Incantation. I met John in the Underworld minutes before Incantation hit the stage and we spoke about Funerusí long awaited release "Festering Earth", as well as to all the reasons that made him stubborn enough to continue being a part of the unique movement thatís called Death Metal.
Five Horse Johnson
When I was told that I was going to interview Eric from Five Horse Johnson, the only information I had was that the bandís frontman is quite fond of alcohol. What Karl Demata didnít tell me is that Eric is one of the friendliest people on Earth. This helped to make this interview a quite enjoyable experience.
On the 13 April, minutes before Kataklysm appeared on the stage of the Electric Ballroom, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jeff Dagenais, the bandís guitar player. We talked about Kataklysmís latest release "Serenity in Fire", the revival of Metal music and our common admiration for the musical phenomenon called Loreena McKennitt.
Life is definitely full of surprises. The first time I spoke to Mike, Destructionís axeman, I was a fifteen year old kid attending my first Thrash Metal gig in the famous Rodon Club in Athens. Fifteen years later and based on the release of their first ever DVD "Live Discharge", I got the chance to continue a long overdue conversation with my childhood hero. The butcher strikes back!..
Being a great musician and a well-known producer are two things which perfectly describe Chris Goss, the man behind the legendary US outfit Masters Of Reality. Chris made a short trip to the UK in order to promote his latest release "Bring Us Barabas" and to explain to me exactly what "total gass"really means.
Having to interview one of your earliest favourite bands is something many people would be ecstatic about, but managing to turn this into a friendly conversation is more than I had hoped for when setting out to interview Rob and Mark from Death Angel.
Our conversation touched upon the release of their latest album, The Art of Dying, their plans for the future and the wizard of the electric guitar, Kirk Hammet...
Tom Hunting/Gary Holt (Exodus)
Exodus, the founders of the Bay Area Thrash Metal scene, are about to
release their new studio album "Tempo of the Damned". After having
two cups of coffee and plenty of breathing exercises to calm myself
down, I met founding members Gary Holt and Tom Hunting in the Norfolk
Plaza Hotel in Paddington. With the precious help of my laptop
computer and the quite reliable "Optimus" tape recorder (cheers
Paul), I made a thirty minute trip in the wonderful world of Thrash
Metal, and found out why Gary feels like a kid in a candy store...
Anders Friden/Peter Iwers of In Flames
It took me a while to find Mandeville Hotel, regardless of the fact that itís located in the very centre of London.
While enjoying a cold pint of lager (cheers Karl), I met Anders Friden (Vocals) and Peter Iwers (Bass) from In Flames, for what proved to be a very interesting Interview...
Martin of Decapitated
I didnít need a better excuse in order to be in the Underworld on the 28th of February, rather than the fact that my countrymen Rotting Christ and the new Death Metal phenomenon called Decapitated were to share the same stage.
Somewhere between the sound checks of the bands I managed to chat with Martin, the bassist of Decapitated.
If you think that being a member of a Metal band is all about having an attitude and pretending that youíre evil, you need to meet Mircea, the guitarist and mastermind behind Mnemic, a very promising quintet from Denmark. This interview took place on the backstage of the London Underworld, half an hour before the band stormed the stage and blew our minds away...
The dressing room of the Underworld is not the best place to hang out, but it proved to be the ideal place to interview Soilwork, minutes before appearing in front of one of the most energetic British crowds I have ever seen in my life. Peter Wichers (Guitar), Speed (Vocals) and Ola Frenning (Guitars) talk about their album "Figure Number Five" and explain how you can compose music in your sleep!
The last thing you want to eat after a long and tiring concert is prawn crackers, but unfortunately that was the only thing that the waitress of the ĎSingapore Slingí had to offer to Magnus, the Frontman and mastermind of the Swedish quartet Witchcraft. After a very successful show at the Barfly in Camden, I spoke with the young-looking musician about Witchcraft and his great appreciation for the Doom Metal legends Pentagram.
I really admire bands who have the strength to resist the trap of commercialism and release creative and unique albums. One of these bands is 9ine. On the 14th of March and only minutes before the bandís final soundcheck, I met Nay (Guitars/Vocals) and Mead (Decks and Programming) and the friendly chat we had reminded me that a musician must be, above all, a free spirit.