Friday, November 20, 2015

What does post rock/metal mean to you?

Hey guys,
I am currently finalizing a front cover article at Muzikus on post rock/metal. I have gathered numerous interviews with top post rock/metal bands, but I would also like to use some of the opinions from listeners and fans.

Please feel free to contribute on a question: What does post rock/metal mean to you?

Be open and philosophical as you wish and I will include the best comments in the article. Thank you

Here are the videos from bands, whose interviews are included in the article:


If These Trees Could Talk

Russian Circles

God Is An Astronaut


Long Distance Calling

Flash the Readies

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

How I got to interview Adam Clayton of U2

When you reach a point, where you speak to U2, there are two things which are more than true: It was a long way here and barely anything can top that. Plenty of various conditions had to fall in place, some great people had to help, it’s something worth remembering and it only took few months to reach Adam Clayton of U2.

Well, naturally rather years, as only few of us in Muzikus magazine team might hope for such an attractive product. Based on the gear essence of the magazine, there are plenty of top class equipment brands promoting their products and naturally carefully analyzed by our strict reviewers. Next to that, they are all also really happy, if we include them inside the few interviews we do. One might think we work on a deal: “We will get you a top musician and you speak nicely about the brand!” You wish my friend…

If we would have done it even once, readers would kill us, it would be more than clear to a musician and interview would suck. Therefore, when we talk to someone, all of the brands, which he/she ever used, are discussed and compared, no matter, who arranged the interview. In the case of Adam Clayton, it was more than a free interview, as there are numerous brands promoting their products, with Adam included on their portfolio of signature artists, in our magazine: Everything from Fender, Aguilar, Warwick and possibly even Ashdown. The ground was more than open for comparing and finding compliments and an appropriate time of usage for each. However we didn’t stop there.

We started covering what Adam does in his free time, as I just saw on U2’s Facebook page he was enjoying a visit in Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum. Than we moved to the magic of their live shows, followed by a new album and discussion on a band’s writing style. This was a chance to discuss some of the crucial songs as California (Remembering their innocent early days) and Song for Someone, where we also talked about Woody Harrelson and how they managed to get him for their brilliant video. Towards the end we talked about the new generation of musicians, which are walking in their footsteps, however still influencing them back and Adam’s charity activities within Walk In My Shoes Charity. No need to mention, there was not enough time for everything.

I was preparing for weeks, since I heard about the chance for an interview and I had numerous A4 sheets filled with structured questions. When I was informed, it would be a ten minutes interview, I had to pic only the best ones. As a part of my research, I looked at every single good article and interview from recent days, but also some of the established stuff from the past. Personally I can recommend some of them here:

God bless you Muzikus team

Nothing would have happened if I didn’t have a proper support from the Muzikus team, especially the editor-in-chief, deputy editor/graphic designer and a colleague Milan Janeček, who supported me, as a professional bass player, on the gear questions. Plus, I knew he was trying to get this interview within our team for years. Interview was actually supposed to be done at first over email, few months ago. I provided an extended list of questions by the end of July and we have waited for weeks. Suddenly, I received a call from editor-in-chief, saying Adam will call me personally at 10AM Stockholm time on 16th of September. When Adam called, we even agreed on sth more than twenty minutes. Cheers mate and thanks for a great interview!

What next?

After that, you can only humbly thank those who helped you, thank higher powers and hope you will get Ozzy or other guys from Black Sabbath, while they are still alive...

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

When a favourite band breaks your heart - Lonely The Brave

We all know that feeling, when you desperately fall in love with a band. On the other hand, those who really experienced it know, it doesn't happen every week. British Lonely The Brave are the band, for which I fell in love, like for any other in years. Unfortunately that love was not returned.

One of the best aspects of music journalism is the fact, you can contact the bands you love right away. Remember the days, when you were practically obsessed by the band, listening to all of their stuff non-stop, downloading every single photo and trying to find every possible live video? Music meant for night walks, close-to religious experinces - We all have been there...

The moment I heard the song Backroads, I was in love!

The first time, I heard about Lonely The Brave, was when I was checking the line-up of Rock Im Park 2014. Every music journalist should do that, when he/she gets the chance to be on such an incredible event. These guys were practically on the complete end of an endless line-up. I was really tired from checking all the bands, especially some really crazy German bands. No offence, only you can love it guys ;D But the moment I heard the song Backroads, I was in love! I started checking other few songs they had online and playing it non-stop. It had all attributes I love about music and it truly spoke to me. Magical feeling was also enhanced by the fact, their debut album wasn't released yet. No one denies it's simpler to fall in love with a band, which has released six songs so far, rather than hearing Dream Theater for the first time and desperately checking their whole catalogue. ;D

Lyrics of Backroads:
Making eyes with a sea of lies
So you understand
That you're raping on my dreaming

And you're ruining my best made plans

First line of twenty people at Rock Im Park 2014

Next was a live show at Rock Im Park 2014. They played on the second day of a four day festival and basically first, on the second of two giant outside stages. On the first day, only the main stage was occupied and Lonely The Brave were practically the first to play the second stage next day, early in the morning, around 10AM, I guess. My colleagues from Rock&Pop mag, really didn't share my excitement, plus I could see those bastards laughing at us, from the press centre. It was bloody hot and so early, I couldn't believe that there was somebody supposed to play, on that stage in the matter of minutes. Suddenly they started to play in front of the field that can hold around twenty thousand people, for about twenty viewers, with me in the first line. Well, practically all of us, in the first line. But it was magical...

Bookpack dream

Whole summer I couldn't wait for their debut album The Day's War to come out on the first day of September. I had really tough summer, so I highly appreciated their music, which helped me a lot.  Soon, after the album was released, everything was turning better and was really looking forward to buy the album. By the point my bank account was healthy again, I said to myself: I will get Adidas superstar shoes, red Long Distance Calling t-shirt and Lonely The Brave’s The Day’s War Bookpack. At that point I also asked for an interview. Well, inside my interview request was also a request to get the limited edition Bookpack signed, before they send it. I was slightly hoping that an interview will get me a free copy ;D but I would more than happy to pay for it. It had all the lyrics beautifully written and autographs of the members on the top would be the bloody best.

Well, I actually asked for the interview before the Rock Im Park, but I didn't get an answer from:

In September 2014 I returned back to the interview request and I carefully followed their promo team, they had on their Facebook profile.

3. 9. ed(at) - nothing 
16. 9. louise.mayne(at) – nothing
17. 9. james(at) – nothing
19. 9. wez(at)

Wez was the one, who replied and we arranged the time of the interview perfectly. When I reminded, about my request regarding a signed debut Bookpack, I was assured it should not be a problem and Mease will co-ordinate.

Can anybody hear me?

Interview was great and Mark Trotter apologised for the promo team, as it was just getting adjusted. Mease even wrote, it will get sorted and I will receive one of the last thirty pieces. I sent my address right away. When the interview came out in a month, I also sent a scan. I also tried to remind myself, but that was the last time I heard from Mease. After multiple tries, I included in the middle of December, all of the contacts related to Lonely The Brave, I came across during my interview requests etc.

Wez <wez(at)
Mease <mease(at) 
James Parrish <james(at) 
Sophie Graham <sophie.graham(at)

After that I wrote a sms to Mark Trotter and wrote on a bands Facebook inbox, and I have received this answer:

Lonely The Brave
Hey Dan, Mease is sorting this for you. Bear with him smile emoticon
Thank you for your support smile emoticon
Mark x

That was the last time I heard from anybody from Lonely The Brave team. (Bookpack was soon sold out). It's October 2015 and let's go for teenage girl attitude: "I only love them for their music now."


It was actually few weeks ago, when I saw my dad after a while, to whom I give some new music into his phone once in a while. A fan of Sting, Peter Gabriel, The Smiths etc., came I said: "You gave me some good albums, but one was hell of a good: Lonely The Brave!" He was not the only one, whom I recommended this band. When I meet new people or old friends and they ask me for a single music tip, I go for LTB. Including famous musicians, when we talk about latest musical discoveries...

Update 2

As soon as I released this article, Lonely The Brave team got back in contact. They apologized, but included a comment: "We actually have a signed book pack here in the management office. Only three of the band members have signed it at this stage." Anyway, I received the album very soon after that, which I'm grateful for. I was also offered 1 + 1 ticket on any of their show, but it's still too far for me from Czech Republic. We exchanged few tips on their future festival shows and plenty of friendly greetings. I'm glad, I didn't write all this for nothing.  

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Pictures of Tosin Abasi (Animals As Leaders) WANTED!

By now, interview with Tosin Abasi, the brain of Animals As Leaders, is ready to be placed on the front cover of Czech magazine Muzikus. However, there is one crucial problem: There are no HQ profile pics of him to be found. One would think, front cover offer would sound good, but we have tried on all sides, including label and his promo team, but they either don’t have them or don’t have a right to share them.

Interview with Tosin took place just before their show last year in Prague, where they were supported by Tesseract. Material was highly appreciated by the editor-in-chief of Muzikus, but I was not able to get the proper picture of him, to be placed on the front cover.

I asked for help Tesseract’s guitar player James Monteith, who is also working for Hold Tight! PR, with whom I spoke just before Tosin. Hold Tight! is a PR agency which is taking care of the bands as Circles, Chimp Spanner, Hacktivist, Norma Jean, Skyharbor, The Algorithm but also Animals As Leaders. However the only useful profile pics of Tosin were copyrighted.

DiMarzio familia, no supporta 

All of the pics were taken by DiMarzio brand photographer, but they are not willing to share the pics. Well, not even sell or license them, even though they were informed, the DiMarzio brand is mentioned in the interview. My ultra polite e-mail was answered, by the DiMarzio family in the same matter, as to James: “Sorry, but no.” James had even tried the band with no luck, unlucky are also at Sumerian Records and its natural Tosin would not reply on his Facebook, with such a flow of “other” messages.

We want your picture on the front cover

We are out of ideas and options. If you own a license to HQ profile picture of Tosin or even really good live picture of him, let me know. I add the example of Björn Gelotte of In Flames from 2013. If the picture fits the criteria and eagle eye of editor-in-chief ;D, your picture will be placed on the front cover, with appropriate photo credit. Thanx 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Myrkur Interview - 13th of August 2015

I’ve chosen to ask Danish artist Myrkur for an interview, as I belong to the rising number of the fans of her music. Interview was originally conducted for Czech magazine Rock&All. Interview went great, we talked for about half an hour from 8pm CET. However the next morning I realised a status on Myrkur’s Facebook 14th of August:

"Did you sing the scream vocals yourself on your album?" is a question I got from a "journalist" tonight. I don't know, do you do your own writing? Fuck you

Additional comments:
Myrkur Good, I'm proud to be "priggish" to idiots. But Linda Marleen, you may wanna stop calling other women bitches for speaking their minds, in the long run it could hurt you.
Myrkur All his questions were in that tone. This was just the one I chose to share. It's not hard to tell when a writer is well meaning or not.

Check for yourself lower. Full audio is also included

Download audio here
Press "Stáhnout", fill the 4 letters on a picture and press "Stáhnout"

Our interview was delayed, as I was informed, due to the family issues of yours. Hope everything is fine now?
Yes, it was nothing serious. It was rather internet stuff and I’m good now.

Glad to hear that. First of all, I would like to congratulate you on your debut album, which is simply amazing. I enjoyed the album for the past few weeks, as well your debut EP, where I would like to start. I’m aware you had plenty of guests on the debut album, but did you do the EP all by yourself?
I did everything on the EP myself, expect for the drumming, which were done by a friend of mine from Sweden, who helped me with that.

Why did you decide you need to include other musicians for the debut album including the bass parts, additional guitar, production, string instruments etc.?
It was not much of a need, rather than I just wanted to make a full length record. I didn’t want to do it all by myself, the way I did with the EP, as it was basically demos. When I started to talk to Kristoffer (Kristoffer Rygg aka Garm – Ulver) about him producing the record, he said yes to do it and started suggesting other musicians to get involved and places to record the album. People he recommended were great and especially legendary figures from black metal and even classical music. I feel I had an unique chance to work with such level of talent and it was very exciting and challenging.

Did you follow Garm’s career in a long term, especially in Ulver? Personally I still haven’t done it, except for their recent cooperation with Sunn O))).
I’m a big Ulver fan, especially of their earlier black metal stuff. Especially the album Bergtatt was a big inspiration to me.

Did you had a chance to see Sunn O))) live? I’m asking, as I just saw them at Brutal Assault, where we are hoping to see you soon as well.
No, I haven’t seen them live, but Kris speaks very highly of them.

When I first heard Myrkur, it was a brand new experience for me. On a first touch it seemed as a combination of Mayhem and Angelzoom. I mentioned the second name, as I was always a fan of female fronted bands. Not necessarily Nightwish and Within Temptation, but rather The Gathering and Ava Inferi which I like to... compr, comr

Yes, thank you. It’s getting late. (laugh) They are one the first comparisons, which come to my mind, when I like to introduce your projects to the people that haven’t heard about you. Do you follow other female fronted bands?
Not really, but it is not much of a choice. I just wasn’t seduced by it much, as they don’t get much coverage. (laugh) My love for black metal, started with a Norwegian bands as Mayhem, Ulver, Darkthrone, Bathory, Dissection etc. This was the sound for me.

How a girl does get to the music like this? 
Even when I was a child, I really liked classical metal as Mercyful Fate, Metallica and Slayer. When I was a teenager I was seduced by Darkthrone and I started exploring from there and grew a big love for this sound.

I have reached an extreme metal, by the end of elementary school with Sepultura’s Beneath The Remains and Death’s Sound Of Perseverance. I started listening to extreme metal, when I moved as a teenager to another country against my will. Suddenly I realised this music spoke to me. People who enjoy extreme metal, often mention, there was a certain experience which brought them to extreme metal. What do you think was your reason?
You know, I can recognise those feelings of anger, hatred and secluded of the people around you, who always make you feel you don’t fit in. People who enjoy metal tend to connect with each other over this love of metal. If you don’t genuinely like metal, you actually don’t want to listen to it. You can’t pretend you like it. For me it was based on the actual music, which was a natural extension of me playing classical music and playing traditional Scandinavian folk music. It made a lot of sense for a transition to black metal.

I’m glad you mentioned folk music, which is highly related your image and overall graphics. I would really like to travel to the Northern Europe and especially countries as Iceland and Norway. People from these countries seem always very close to the nature. We might consider it beautiful and calm, but on the other hand it can be very brutal, which seems as both sides of your music as well.
Yes, I find the Mother Nature very fascinating and exactly, there are the contrasts of extreme beauty, purity and light, where, on the other hand you have frozen darkness for many months of the year. That’s why I like to seek this extremity in music.

One of the locations, where you recorded the new album was Macabre Mausoleum. Could you please tell us why you have chosen it?
It is a burial chamber for the artist himself, who created it. It has eleven seconds of natural reverb in there and it’s perfect for my choral vocals and piano recordings. It is completely dark and cold in there. It has the feeling of death, which fits well for black metal and my music I guess.

I spoke to Einar from Leprous just few hours before that and as you may know, Ihsahn is not on the album. He just did clean backing vocals on one song as Einar told. However he used to do the guest vocals on the previous albums. When Myrkur has such a number of guests, you might want to check if one the guests might add some vocals too. From the overall tone of the interview, I would not expect she will get insulted by any chance by a question like this.

When you mentioned your vocals, the vocals, especially screams, are done by yourself right?

There is a rising number of female singers globally who can do the harsh vocals, even though the general public is still surprised, but you did amazing job.
Thank you.

If I’m not mistaking you practice your screams surrounded mainly by nature?
Yeah, but I also did the demos in my friend’s rehearsal place, which was empty burlesque theatre. Ceilings were extremely high and there was nothing except me in there, in the darkness. I could experiment with my screaming on top my tracks. Sometimes, when I record I forget myself in what I’m doing and it feels like I wake up all of a sudden and then I ask myself: „What am I doing?“ It is all dark and I forget for how long I’ve been here. I enjoy the feeling of disconnection. For example, I start recording when it’s a day and feel as there is light outside... then I wake up and its night. (laugh) Then I start to wonder if I’m alone or not. It is a weird combination of both, as when I scream I feel connected to my inner self, but I also feel very disconnected to anything else.

I can relate to that, as when I listen to your music, I switch to another world.
Yeah! I’m glad to hear that. (laugh)

It seems as a flight on a cloud, but suddenly there comes a fall into darkness. On the other hand both extremes, and there is a plenty of them, still work in a balance.
Human beings are this way. I’m very fascinated by a psychologist and a philosopher Carl Jung and the concept of your shadow side, where you can combine the masculine and the feminine qualities and become a higher version of a human race. I do think everyone has an echo of this inside them, but not everyone practices it and even remembers it.

Could you therefore say by your opinion that one should be aware of both of his/her sides and try to find a balance even between good and evil side...
Yeah, but I’m not even thinking about balance. I just refuse to repress anything. If you look at mythology even if it’s Greek or Northern, all the gods and goddesses don’t pretend to be almighty perfect gods. They all have different sides and make mistakes, as they have evil in them as well. It is all part of the human nature, but also part of the something bigger, possibly divine.

When we mentioned a personal progress, how much would you say, Garm helped you to grow as an artist?
He was very helpful both with his experience and expertise, but also his vision. Next to that he knows when to back off and let me practice my vision. Most of the time, him and I saw things in the same way and dreamed in a same way about the sound of the album. Actually it was very easy process.

If we compare the EP and the debut, there is a single song which is the same - Dybt I Skoven, plus I there is luckily not much of a change on that song. Why did you decide to use it once again?
There are few changes and especially it sounds better. We chose it because..., well it’s funny because I wrote that song many years ago and I guess I was very inspired by Ulver’s music for that particular song and even the content of the lyrics. When I started speaking to Kristoffer, he said it was his favourite song of the EP. When we talked about making the album, we started discussing re-recording the song from the EP, as we felt the song connected us in a weird way. Actually, before we even met.

I’m glad you mentioned Metallica in our interview, as when I heard the song Mordetfeaturing Christopher Amott, the beginning reminded me of them right away. Was it natural, as you are a fan, or was it rather Christopher’s input?
Both us like that thrashy/death/heavy metal riff sound and he happens to master it very well, as an incredible guitar player. I knew I wanted that style of a song on the album as well. He was my guitar teacher at one point and he is a friend, so I asked him if he would like to join me on the album. He thought me few Metallica riffs before, so I guess it came very naturally.

You mentioned that you spent most of your life in peaceful environment and nature. When your music came out, I started to see you all over internet and especially mainstream metal websites and their social media. How are you handling the coverage? Are you ignoring the comments from all those assholes from all around the world with their sexist comments etc.? (laugh)
(laugh) In the beginning it is overwhelming, as it is unnatural place to be in, for a human being. You are being attacked and you cannot defend yourself. Plus you are being attacked by someone who would not have the guts to approach you in person. That’s not a very human situation to be put it. It is very 2015-weird-cowardly way to be handled. But that’s how the things are right now. It might change and I quickly realised, it will happen and I see the anger as the secondary emotion and it is a result of another emotion that it’s harder to deal with. It can be all these different things. When people are angry with me, I just cannot take it personally.

You are being attacked and you cannot defend yourself. Plus you are being attacked by someone who would not have the guts to approach you in person.

Well handled! I know you must have heard this for the millionth time, but the first I heard about you, it reminded me of the Icelandic movie Metalhead. I would like to ask you, as probably one of many, if you enjoyed the movie?
I never heard of it! (laugh)

No way! 
No, I never heard of it (laugh)

Am I the first one, who is speaking to you about Metalhead movie? Icelandic movie, about a girl who finds salvation in black metal and starts her one-woman black metal project?
I swear to god! (laugh) I should definitely watch that!! (laugh)

Write me on skype, when you finish watching it, how did you like it. Until then, thank you for your time, it was fun. I would like to compliment you once again on an amazing music and a fresh air in black metal scene.
Thank you, thanx for talking to me.

Looking forward to your show in Czech Republic, either solo or on a festival. Have a nice evening.
You too. Bye

Bye Bye


Around the time, I posted this interview, I also wrote to Relapse Records, who represent Myrkur. We have long term cooperation and this was a first time, I experienced sth like this. Myrkur didn't reply, as she was in the woods, based on her FB pic, after she returned. She replied negatively on my comment, where a link on this interview was included, but she took it away, just a moment before I received numerous emails from Relapse Records. She didn't get involved in this matter anymore, which was probably advised to her. They told me it was a misunderstanding and there was an interview with very impolite Polish journalist, right after me. Whether it was true or not, I was offended by her status. In any way, it was still, with a reasonable background, one of my questions.

Update 2

Thanks for the support. All the likes/shares were erased, during the reconstruction of the website. So here is the look back at your support. thanx         


Thursday, July 16, 2015

Sepultura Lost & Found interview 2010

Although Brazilian SEPULTURA, is probably never going to beat the golden age with Max Cavalera behind the microphone, remaining members accompanied by the substitutes, are still making the cult name alive and worth the respect. With each album since the arrival of Derrick Green, they head higher, and the recent signing to Nuclear Blast is the best proof. I managed to catch Derrick, accompanied by his Czech girlfriend, on the festival Brutal Assault, and after well understood big apology to her, he devoted me a moment for short talk.

I can see that, as well as many others, you discovered that we have the most beautiful girls in the world. How did you two meet?
We met during a show and we have a kind, 2 years old.

That’s why you are trying to speak Czech during a show…
I’m trying to learn. But it is going slowly. My child is Czech citizen, so I have to work harder. (laugh)

How do you like the Czech audience?
I love it, and I always did, even before SEPULTURA. I played in a hard-core band and I played in Prague in 1993. I always felt, that there is a lot of passion for music. People are very open to express these feeling for music, which is something special, as it doesn’t happen everywhere. Especially for heavy music, it is a great place to play and it always has been. The festivals are usually very intense, a lot of people and a lot of appreciation, which is always incredible to play here.

I could feel it in crowd trust me. But the one show, which will always stay in my mind, was the one at Masters Of Rock festival in 2007.
Yeah, that was another incredible and massive festival; and also really cool.

Your latest album “A-Lex” was released already some time ago. How do you look at your work with certain time distance?
I’m definitely satisfied, mainly because we could see a lot of young people really getting into SEPULTURA, who never seen the old line-up. There is always a lot of controversy, as people talk about the past: “You know it’s not the same”! But, that’s what I’m saying, Yeah, It’s not the same, it is 2010! Everybody has moved on for a really long time. So, it is amazing to see a lot of young people that are really into the new songs. We can attract new fans along with keeping the old fans, which really enjoy very heavy brutal stuff that we are doing. I think we were able to grow and evolve, which is something that I always wanted to do with the band. I always knew it’s going to be hard to evolve but it was a challenge that really made us stronger. We can survive so many different things happening and I think that it kept us together; our passion and the fact that we were able to attract new fans. I’m really happy about the results, and the impact it had. We played a lot in Europe and we could see the changes, as more and more people recognized the new songs, mixed with the old ones, so it’s pretty satisfying.

What can you say about the concept of the new album?
The concept is based on the book by an Anthony Burgess, “A Clockwork Orange”. There was also a movie, which Stanley Kubrick did, but we wanted to focus on the book. Book actually has a different ending than a movie and it is naturally more detailed, more descriptive and we felt that it has a huge impact on what is happening today. It was something, that a lot of people fight for and they don’t realize it is a free will. There are a lot of things that are just forced on people in society. Propaganda has a huge influence on people, forced religion or other things that are telling people, what is good or wrong. It is up to the person to make his decisions, what is good or bad for him. I think this struggle is facing everybody, and basically everybody can relate to the story and main character, Alex. For us, it was really interesting and amazing to write on top of that, and following the book. So, the first part of the book is very violent, very open; middle is more seduced, Alex is in jail; then he gets out and everything is coming back, so it was cool to make music that goes along with the story.

As many fans heard, you got recently signed to Nuclear Blast. What does this change mean to you personally and as a band?
I think it is a big change for us. Personally, I think, it’s great, that there are labels, which want to make commitment to us and really believe in us. As a band, it’s great opportunity to show a lot of people, that we are still creating something interesting. So, it’s going to be good to do more interviews and more things when people would really know, what is happening with us. We’ve been working constantly, but it is much harder, if you have a label, which is trying, but the relationship is problematic and bankruptcy is on top of that. With Nuclear Blast I received very nice vibe that they want to bring us up, really work with us and put good ideas together. That is something what we really need for the next year and new album.

Not only me, we could all see that since you got in SEPULTURA, there was a stable progress taking place and signing to Nuclear Blast proves it.
I definitely agree. I think that live shows also help us a lot. Being able to come up stage, to show people we have the energy, and play wide variety of songs in setlist. It really helps the live show along with creating interesting and fresh album.

Where do you find after this amount time, still so much energy and passion during live shows?
I think it comes from many different things: Traveling, the excitement of being on the road, being with friends and family, and definitely the energy of the people. When you see people pumped up, this energy is transferred to the band and goes back to the audience. That’s what’s really cool about Czechs, as the energy is there from the very beginning. “Oh my god lets destroy the stage!” And it is consistent, from the very beginning to the very end, as the people are with you the whole time. You don’t see that many opportunities seeing such a crowd. That energy comes from everything around us, and our passion for so many years, of doing what we love to do. In addition, having a good crew of people around, that are there for us.

As we are talking about live shows, it’s obvious that most of the fans love the old stuff, and the show is mostly short, but do you maybe feel a bit uncomfortable that you basically have to play old songs.
I think it’s pretty common, with all bands. It takes time for people to get used to new material. But these days its interesting, as new generation is here, and they ask why we don’t play stuff from the first albums when I came to the band. We hear this a lot more, as these people never seen the old line-up. In addition we really try to play some rare songs, and there about 5-6 people enjoying it (laugh), but the others are asking for something else. I’ve been in a band for about 13 years, and there are songs, with similar age, so we are trying to put them in set, these days even more. During the full set, that we usually do, there is a chance to play a lot of new songs or the ones since I came, as people are complaining, because they want to hear the new stuff (laugh). So it’s a balancing and we really don’t have a problem playing the old songs. We actually like to dig and look for the songs that we never played before or even Andreas and Paulo didn’t play before, but it’s good to have a balance.

From the inspiration sense, Brazilian feeling can be still felt on the albums; it is obvious for the guys, but do you personally get influenced by the local music and environment a lot?
Big influence has the fact that I live in Brazil for 11 years, which is a huge impact. Not only from music but the environment has a tendency to influence how you feel. Brazil is a mixed place with a lot of roots from a lot of people. Especially being in Sao Paulo, which is very mixed, is I think very natural to get influenced. I can feel it inside, as we in the band, by this condition, connected very well. I have also another band and it helps as well, that are all Brazilians as well. And that helps too, communicating and playing songs with them. But definitely listening to certain styles of music there, had an impact on me.

I was always wondering why did you choose to cover “Bullet The Blue Sky” from U2?
Lyrics were the main reason. U2 is a very popular band and it was very unlikely that we would cover it, so it was another reason. But lyrics are very strong and powerful. It was a challenge; I mean U2 song (laugh). I really like U2 and we wanted to show people one of the revolutionary songs, what made SEPULTURA, what it is now. We don’t have to sound exactly like those bands but they have an impact. We like to listen to various styles of music, and we are open-minded, but we wanted to do it in our own way and show what feeling we have connected to the song. Overall it was challenging and cool at the same time, as we did something totally different.

What was the idea behind the video, you running through the city and then jumping from the roof?
(laugh) I love music videos and I wanted people to think during that; is he running from something or running to something? …And jumping from the roof, it was a director’s idea (laugh). He said, there is a need for some kind of a twist to it. We wanted a simple video, which will not let you leave the screen. It is mainly open for people’s imagination and was fun to do it.

It is not that long, when Andreas surprised us, by his solo album. How do you look on aside activities overall and on what he has created?
I really love it. I also heard demos early on, so I knew the album from inside out. I think it is very healthy to get out sometimes and play with different artist because it gives you perspective. There was a main reason why I wanted to do my project, MUSICA DIABLO. We are artists and we like to play and create with other artists. I think it’s healthy, but I really like what he did. It’s totally different from SEPULTURA but I think it’s incredible and I like listening to it.

When you mentioned your side project, it would not be bad idea to introduce it to those SEPULTURA fans, which still didn’t hear about it.
It’s called MUSICA DIABLO and there is a lot of stuff on MySpace, for them to check it out. We have basically just started and made one tour in Europe. As we returned, now we have a booking agent, we have an album, and its straight thrash. It’s from the beginning to the end, a punch in a face (laugh). It’s old style classic thrash, and you really don’t have to think much about it, but it’s fun to do it, definitely live.

What are the closest plans for SEPULTURA? You mentioned an album…

Yeah, right now the plan is to finish the tour and then go back to South America, and do some shows there. Really schedule time for rehearsing and working on a new album, and try to get that done before the end of the year, to have it released next year.   

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Graspop 2010 Lost & Found report


This was the first big festival of my life, but unfortunatelly due to the closure of Czech magazine HardRocker and it's future plans, this report was never released. Haven't seen this piece full of incredible performances, backstage ethics and few broken dreams, in five years. Note - no edit since, of early wanna-be journalism.

Overall experience from the first big festival is always very intensive and unforgettable. This option was offered to me at the 15th Anniversary of famous Belgiumopen-air festival, Graspop, for what I’m very grateful. This year promised again breath taking line-up and unique atmosphere, which is sharing a crowd counting up to 130,000 people.

Night arrival into festival grounds offered us a look that showed that pleasant sleeping will not be the case tonight. Masses of people were moving from large parking spaces into single giant camp. As, by the second year already, a festival complex was missing V.I.P. camp, we loyally joined the massive crowd as well. Massive reflectors, showing an unpleasant amount of dust everywhere, tents diving in sand, thousands of people around and sometimes too strict rules inside the camping site, kept us “entertained”, during the first conflict with organizers. Additional “entertainment” was served to us by never-sleeping neighbors, especially our German colleagues. It’s really surprising how much “Timmyyyyy” is still popular! ;-)


During the entrance into the festival area, I first experienced the look at the incredible mass of people, which was steadily growing and the alignment of the stages which included 3 big tents (Marquee I&II and Metal Dome) and the main stage. Here was first presented REVAMP, new band of Floor Jansen, previously the front-woman of no more existing AFTER FOREVER. Presented material is compared to her previous experience pretty similar, which was for the fans, even though it was slightly heavier, basically no surprise. Floor totally naturally switching from operatic to melodic vocal, proved why her new band received such credibility. At the same time, she expressed many times honest joy, from being again on the stage, in front of the satisfied crowd.

After this show, I went for the first time in the backstage area. Through out the whole festival we found the shade, peace, quality toilets and comfort in “Artist Lounge”, where only musicians and journalists had an entrance. Place like this is on many festivals unfortunately often missing. It offers big comfort for both musicians and needed back up for journalist, waiting to take some of their free time. “Artist Lounge” also offered pleasant bar, various places to sit but also two plasma TV’s which were showing footages from the main stage and matches from the finishing battles of soccer world championship. To get additional picture: I was really blown away, from watching the singers of CANNIBAL CORPSE and OBITUARY in vigorous discussion about the current soccer games.

During that time I also managed to catch Floor Jansen after her bands signing session to have a short talk, while SLAYER was playing in the background. Graspop Metal Meeting offered such a strong line-up that even SLAYER played in the afternoon block. Their show was as usual, very attractive. T-shirt with their logo were flying everywhere, musicians played like crazy and naturally top hits as “Angel Of Death” and “Raining Blood” were blasting the field. In addition, a photo with Kerry King was for me a perfect fan moment.

Right after, I quickly moved to Marquee II, where U.D.O. has just started. Honestly I’ve seen him here for the first time. And for the ones, who made this mistake more than I did, I give maximum recommendation. His voice is simple incredible and although the instrumental background is rather predictable, it still has balls! It wouldn’t be a bad idea to diversify the set, by attractive songs from his solo career, however the crowd is hungry for greatest hits. Therefore “Balls To The Wall” or the current hits as “The Bogeyman” and “Dominator” were obligation.

Afterwards I experienced a dilemma: DORO or TARJA? Graspop was sometimes very uncompromising and offered such an amount of bands, that one had hard time choosing. Sometimes it had to be simply 50/50. DORO followed already for a while by Bas Maas, ex-guitarist of AFTER FOREVER, filled the tent which was previously occupied by U.D.O and she kept the fans on the same wave which U.D.O. has started. Strong lady concentrated mainly on the songs from the WARLOCK era, and she also shared with the fans, her memories of Ronnie James Dio, who meant a lot for her.

TARJA on the other hand didn’t offer such a vital and attractive show. Although Mike Teranna was doing magic behind the drums, whole band of mercenaries didn’t sound compact as you would expect and even TARJA experienced I believe better days. Set was concentrating mainly on a debut album and also expected second album “What Lies Beneath”. As a dessert we received NIGHTWISH hit “Over The Hills And Far Away” and also slightly inappropriate “Still Of The Night” from WHITESNAKE.

While enthusiasts in the first line with the AEROSMITH t-shirts were holding their positions for the main act of the day, MOTORHEAD kept them entertained. Honestly, one can watch them even for the hundredth time. Excellent band, excellent set list, which enjoyed the most, guitarist Phillip Campbell, looking at his solos. In addition, massive stage-dive broke out in the crowd, although it was formally forbidden by the organizers. Lemmy was intensively supporting it though, which kept body collectors pretty busy. No surprise, you can hear “Ace Of Spades” or “Overkill” for bunch of times, still it pulls you in.

I was never a fan of MY DYING BRIDE, but the atmosphere of their show dragged me in, in few short moments. Smoke was slowly rising higher, musicians were almost systematically but sensitively, playing strong melodies and crowd was following them in trance. The most passionate during the show, was with no doubt the singer, who was wriggling, fainting on the microphone and falling into melancholy. Cold chording was replacing aggressive marching, where crowd reacted intensively only at the end of each song, which was ended by symbolic “Thanks” or “Cheers”. …At that moment, I became one.

Time has come for totally different emotions, served by American institution and main act of the first day, AEROSMITH. Current European tour caught the band still in strong condition. Unstoppable process of ageing is present only visually, fortunately not musically. Offered set, was compared to other headliners, bit shorter, however filled with such a famous hits, that even the hard-core metal heads were pulled in by this emotional wave. Performance of Steven is still after all this years impressive. Special platform offered a band almost a promenade and additional playground for their show. One could receive slightly sad impression while looking at both Steven and Joe Perry, whose relationship seemed mostly cold, resulting in thoughts, if this could be the last tour of the band. Finally, Steven’s perfect communication with the crowd and slightly female gestures are simply part of his personality, but the fact which could never be taken away, is that, there is only one Steven Tyler.       


Atmosphere of the festival was a real experience. In my personal example it meant multiply my previous experiences multiple times. Festival complex was filled by the sea of people moving from one stage to another and still basic needs were perfectly supplied. Water and toilets were available to such a level that I didn’t have to wait a single time. Refreshment was naturally very diverse and also without waiting, however from the Czech point of view, for the sake of squealing wallet. Fans were allowed only to pay by Graspop chips in the exchange rate of 2, 25€ for 1 chip. Food costed up to 5 chips, and drinks were regularly sold for 1, however in the amount of 0,2 liters. Crowd was formed mainly from the fans from Benelux, Germany and enthusiasts from all over the world, which were all pretty fine with prices.

Program at sunny noon, was served by today very popular Swedish SABATON. Their T-shirts were extremely popular product and crowd seemed more than entertained. They presented to their loyal fans series of their greatest hits and also some tasting of new album “Coat Of Arms”, naturally back up by essential effects, mainly fire. Singer Joakim Brodem was constantly entertaining fans and in the back stage, he was without no doubt, the most busy, in giving interviews.

Even younger fans received what they needed, when British BULLET FOR MY VALANTINE took over the main stage. Metalcore enhanced by catchy choruses, is today that popular, that even teenage magazines are covering steps of this British band, even though there are bunch of other similar ones. Whether it is due to their look or massive propagation, the crowd was insane. I was really glad to hear songs from the latest album “Fever”, which caught my attention the most, but naturally they pleased the crowd by even slightly older hits. Mosh-pits were a stable fun, but band let the crowd release steam also in “wall of death”, which resulted in some cases in blood drops. Somebody might condemn these activities, however when there is a need for help, everybody is available.

After we survived another period of hot temperatures, CARCASS took care of the main stage. They enjoy the reunion, already for a while, therefore their form was undeniable. Visually the most known member of the band, red-head Michael Amott, was spitting one solo after another, to the point where they had to cool us down by steams of water. I must honestly say that the watering of the crowd during these three days was extremely pleasant. Main stage, which was supported on sides, by double plasma TV’s, was always showing very professional video footages from the stage. In their case these footages included very sadistic or even disgusting videos from dissections procedures and cutting body parts, till I lost my appetite for local French fries.

Big numbers of fans, including me, were really looking forward to see guitar master, who calls himself SLASH. He has chosen as a vocal partner Myles Kennedy from ALTER BRIDGE, who as the only one, has on SLASH’s solo album, two songs. Both “Back From Cali” and “Starlight” sounded even better than on the album, and the other songs to which he didn’t contribute previously, were sang impressively accordingly to his talent and experiences. Somebody might felt that his vocal was positioned sometimes too high; however I must say, SLASH couldn’t find a better partner. To my big surprise, we could even hear an ALTER BRIDGE song, “Rise Today” and naturally also a GUNS N’ ROSES hits as “Sweet Child Of Mine” and “Paradise City”. During the whole time, Mr. Guitarist was having fun with the crowd, entertained him, ran through the stage and impressed us all with his play.

A quick movement took place to get to Marquee I, on time, to see PARADISE LOST. Luckily I took a place in the front row and I was really looking forward to see them. Big space luckily received their incredible latest album “Faith Divides Us, Death Unites Us”. Frontman Nick Holmes seemed slightly tired; however he proved himself well, worked hard, motivated the crowd and was banging with the microphone stand so hard that he even scared security guards under him few times. On the other hand Mr. Mackintosh had a taste. He is not hitting the guitar; his colleague takes care of that. He is not even playing the solos that much, he is debating with the guitar, slightly coquetting with her and eructating mind blowing melodies. A drum stick which felt into my hands, in the end of the show was just a peak of a wonderful show.

Whole metal Belgium lives from the reunion of local heroes, CHANNEL ZERO. Their return to the Graspop field was organized truly grandiosely by giant video and light effects, and naturally very looooong intro. Crowd was served by the greatest hits from the whole career and luckily some from my most favorite last album “Black Fuel” from 1997. On the other hand, this performance wasn’t anything ground braking and even though we take into consideration their qualities, on similar event in some other country, they would not receive such a lucrative time space.

AIRBOURNE, are already for a while entertaining audiences all over the world. For some, they are the fans of AC/DC tradition, for others, they are their close followers. One way or another, their performance has guts and incredible energy. The singer is, as everybody says, true beast. During one of the songs, he climbed on the stage construction up the roof, locked his legs and played on. Songs are really catchy, and mainly it pulls you in, so you would just enjoy this wild party.

Time has come for main star number 2, American-Brazilian SOULFLY. First line was occupied by wild youth, which reacted to each signal to get wild. Main word had naturally Max Cavalera, who surprised, not only me, how much he put on weight since the last time I saw him. He barely moved the whole time, and looked pretty swollen. Fortunately it didn’t have any effect on his singing capabilities. He left big amount of singing to the crowd as well. Audience was lost in Amazonian forest which was distorted by massive hurricane ordered by instrumental background. All members were impressive; however the main instructor of the hurricane was an incredible guitarist, Marc Rizzo. It was really unbelievable how impressively and precisely he could play. Without any doubt, all important chapters of SOULFY very covered, including “Carved Inside”, “Back To The Primitive” same as old SEPULTURA classics as “Territory” and essential “Roots Bloody Roots”.

Right after that, I went again to the backstage, where everybody was enjoying a needed drink. One could say that young and fresh music journalist realizes a lot. Life of a musician is mostly really a Sex, Drugs and Rock’n’Roll, but in some cases in a not so beautiful way. I had a chance to talk and drink with my big idol, Tom S. Englund from EVERGREY and ELUVEITIE singer Chrigel. But when a drunk ANATHEMA singer falls in front of you with a table, or high & drunk SEPULTURA bassist Paulo Jr. is barely able to sign you few booklets and has almost aggressive reactions its not such a ideal moment, as one would think. They are all humans from flesh and blood, and only few of them are worth the real respect. In addition, I truly respect a need and time for celebration and drinking, while a musician is still able to serve his main purpose: professionally entertain and play for the fans in front of the stage. This was not the Tom’s case though; whose reply on my question, if he’ll make it tomorrow was “Nope bro’!”


I took a position in the first line, under the early afternoon sun, with an hour advance and solid hangover from last night, so I could see again one of my top favorite bands. 3 significant members of EVERGREY left the band recently, from various reasons, therefore I was wondering how the band and new forces will deal with it. New members surprised me by their skills and hard work, however, without any personal feelings; they didn’t reach the level of the previous line-up. Already from the start, one could see that not everything is alright. After intro a wild beginning of “Blinded” should have started, however the synchronization of all members didn’t work at the time. Tom had often that typical look in his face, when something wasn’t going on as planned, especially when he played quicker parts. In addition, I was really surprised how much his guitar was louder, than a one from, at that time more capable, co-guitarist. Even though they covered most of the playlist I would like, and even camera caught me many times, the overall show didn’t have any power and the hangover of the significant members, showed her face. My personal dissatisfaction wasn’t even saved by the two guitar picks I caught, or by the fact, that Tom threw me water, because we, as loyal fans didn’t receive this time the most significant aspect of the show, professionalism.

Compared to that, Swedish KATATONIA was a totally different story. A set, compared to the one I saw recently in Prague, was naturally shorter but more intensive as they concentrated only on the greatest hits, which brought the crowd to the boiling point. Thanks to the site of Marquee I, a show received needed cold atmosphere. Stage was just slightly changing colors and musicians dived into the performance. Jonas showed even better performance than in Prague, and proved why the tent was in this time of day, full.

In the afternoon, I was really looking forward to see KILLSWITCH ENGAGE which I also didn’t have a chance to see before. Not only teenagers came to see this icon of metal-core genre. A singer, Howard Jonas wasn’t showing such a performance that I would expect, however it was still an incredible experience. The band took care of everything else and threw the whole crowd into a washing machine. The coolest guy on stage was with no doubt guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz. He is big showman, and apart from few funny conversations with the singer, he was entertaining the crowd by himself. He was provoking, motivating, playing with water and running on the stage as a small kid. However when he removed his “mask”, he truly thanked, as one of the few, the fans for the chance of being here. He also, in the name of the whole band, made a tribute to DIO, while waving to him up there in the sky, by their legendary cover of “Holy Diver”.

Guys from KATATONIA changed into even darker clothes and took their position in the Marquee I again, now accompanied by Mikael Åkerfeldt. BLOODBATH itself is for these artists very useful tool how to share their passion for 90’s Swedish death metal. In the back, guys from KATATONIA were creating deadly atmosphere and in the front Mikael was passionately roaring. He had to share 3 times with the crowd, that he is drunk, however on his performance it had no, or even better effect and their played very attractive set.

On the same place, actively touring AMON AMARTH, presented themselves and performed their typical show, full of popular hits. However at the end of the show, they faced the loss of sound. Technicians were doing what they could; musicians were having fun with the crowd, however it was soon obvious, that this is the end. We could see big dissatisfaction in the face of frontman, but the crowd reacted incredibly, by massive clapping to ensure the band, that the overall performance was more than satisfying.

Time has come for the third headliner and the final band of the festival, KISS. Everybody saw them already probably, but that “first” time is always very intensive. Such an amount of effects, screens, lights, fun and specific cheesiness at the same time, is simply unique. Same as SOUFLY before, the American cult extended its set and played everything that a crowd might wish. Whole show was naturally practiced till the last detail, same as communication with the crowd, but with each song they had additional ace in a pocket. No matter if it were flying platforms, firing guitars or traditional flying, Kiss performed such a show, which was expected from them. Fires and perfect projections were obvious. Even the performances of each member satisfied the crowd. Especially surprising were the singing capabilities of Gene Simmons. On the other hand you could feel in the case of Paul Stanley, missing that highest level of performance, which he is regularly capable of. One way or another, it was amazing show, worth the end of the festival. Goodbye and icing on the cake, of the biggest festival I ever experienced, was served by the giant fireworks. Hope to see you next year again Graspop.