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Among the multitude of global names that spring will at all times, we often do not pay attention to big bands and musicians that may emerge on the world stage.
First, it is humanly impossible to know everything, and secondly because I really do not have access to material or information about them.
And certainly the band that brought him to an exclusive interview for the Road To Metal, fits into one of these that is well worth knowing! Talked a relaxed chat with the leader Metalmorfosis Nick Banger that will tell us everything about the beginning of the band dating back to 1989!
Road to Metal: Hello Nick! Welcome to Road To Metal! I would like you to tell us details of your early music and how the band started.
Nick Banger: Hello Fernanda!! First of all, I want to thank you for giving us the chance to be presented through Road To Metal!! It is my pleasure to be here with you!
Well… some things about the band's formative years...
Me (vocals and guitar) and Steve Breaker (drums) were lucky enough to start listening to metal music in a very early age back in 1986 and our dream was to form our own band, so in 1989 we formed the school band of MAD AGES. We were a bunch of young kids trying to play metal music!!
We recorded three home demo tapes and we were quite popular in our area. Even a local radio station used to play one of our tapes back then.
RtM: At first had a hard time getting gigs? As the decade of eighty in Greece for the heavy music?
Nick Banger: Greece had a lot of metal bands in the 80s… some of them were lucky enough to release an album or more in some cases.
We were very young back then and our first official live appearance on stage came many years later.
RtM: In 1993 the band changed the name of "Mad Ages" for "Spectre". Tell us more about the changes of line up and name the band. And it intends to release some material from that time for the fans.
Nick Banger: Yes, in 1993 we thought of making a more serious attempt with our band, so i decided to change the name to SPECTRE. The band members were the same at the beginning, but year by year we were changing bass players. The music was the same- pure heavy metal-, influenced by the bands we were listening at the time and we had as idols, some well known... and some totally unknown.
In the 90s we recorded three demo tapes and we still play live many of these old songs. Some of them made it to our new album, it was something that had to be done for us and for our fans and we still have a lot of old songs left aside. Maybe we can record two more albums by using old unreleased songs. I have tons of material in the old tapes that we used to record at rehearsals. Although i am not interested for these old demos to be re-released in any format. I was happy with the sound of tapes when I was 16 years old...but now, no way. So, many of the old songs will be re-recorded.
RtM: There is a hiatus from ten years in the band's career until they returned to Metalmorfosis...What happened?
Nick Banger: Well... at some point from the late 90s up to early 00s me and Steve started playing with some other bands of our area. The conclusion was that we put our energy to other people's music and we put our music on ice and that was our mistake at that time.
In 2003 me and Steve had a very serious discussion about our project. He didn't liked the name SPECTRE anymore and he insisted for a name change, so I came up with the name METALMORFOSIS while we were listening to the same titled BARON ROJO album.
Also at that point I wrote "Show me the way", that was the song of our new beginning and says what is all about and behind METALMORFOSIS!
RtM: They released two EPs "Metalmorfosis" (2006) and "Mask Of Gold" (2010) and full-length "...Through Space And Time..." (2012). Tell me more about the reception from critics and fans and visible progress in the development of the band.
Nick Banger: In 2006 we managed to make our dream come true. It was the release of our songs on vinyl.
It was a very special year for me and many things happened. In late 2005 we entered a studio to record six songs but the amount of money the studio charged us was so big that so we ended up taking only two songs finished and with the rest of the money I paid everything including the album covers and pressing. It was a high quality release in every aspect, the quality of the paper, the quality of the vinyl, even the logo of the band is embossed on the cover and the most important thing? I put my soul into it!!
As for the music... it is nothing more and nothing less than pure Heavy Metal the way it should be played!
The cover artwork dates back in the SPECTRE days. It was the cover that we wanted to use if we could manage to release an album in the mid 90s.
But better late than never! The reviews at that time were all excellent! Metalheads from all over the world saw it as the explosion that metal music was need so much. Two days after the release of the 12" around 100 copies were already sold here but strong interest came from Germany as we gave our first three page interview there and in a matter of days we had been offered a record deal and an invitation for playing live there but sadly we were not able to make it because Steve and George Dynamite (Bass) were no longer members of the band.
|Line-up 1999 - 2006|
So in 2007 METALMORFOSIS returned with a new line up and giving their first official live show ever! opening for the mighty BROCAS HELM!
Many gigs followed, we opened for NWOBHM legends ELIXIR , we shared the stage with local bands or we headlined on our own.
The first studio session with the new line-up was a cover version of the KISS classic "The oath" for a Greek tribute to KISS cd.
The next time we entered the studio in 2008 we recorded the songs "Mask of gold" and "X-Dreamer" that first released as a special limited edition cd of 100 hand numbered copies for the Japanese market and some months later as a 7" for the European market through High Roller Records.
This time the songs had a more dark feeling... even though "Mask of gold" was a song written in 1999 and "X-Dreamer" was about to be recorded for the 12"… but anyway… this 7" gave us more popularity, even I had an invitation for interview and photo-shooting for a major Greek weekly magazine that sells thousands of copies!!
This 7" for me was a reward of my hard work all these years. I succeed in all the plans I had all these years.
Fans really supported this release, not only buying the 7" but also get our t-shirts. Reviews were again amazing with the exception of one from a Greek asshole.
After the release of the 7" we had a lot of plans to give some more concerts and record the full album. But nothing happened because of bad luck: line up changes, diseases and accidents, cancelling an opening slot for OMEN, ready to open for WHIPLASH and WHIPLASH cancelling the tour and these type of crappy things were happening.
|Line-up 2007 - 2010|
And finally we come to July 2010.Then we stared recording the whole album again from the start and took more than one year to complete the recordings, up to it's release in April 2012.As you understand this is the album that everybody was expecting from 2008!!
So far we have a lot of positive feedback!! Seems that fellow metalheads who got the album really liked! I have red two reviews so far both of them are great!
This time I see a really strong interest from Brazilian metalheads! I personally spoke with them in my Facebook page and I am really amazed how much you like my music and how much warm and supportive people you are! I really appreciate!! I wish we have the chance to play someday there!
RtM: As you analyze the musical maturity seen in the above mentioned two EPs, and Full-length “Through Space And Time"?
Nick Banger: Well... year by year I think I am becoming better as a singer and composer. I am not considering myself as a good guitar player because I am very lazy to practice even though I am the main composer of METALMORFOSIS music. The songs on the new album are basically old, some of them date back in 1996. All of our releases have many similarities and many differences as well. I guess our fans can give a better answer than me here.
RtM: And the distribution of the new album is being made on all continents? How's touring schedule?
Nick Banger: Yes, we have worldwide distribution! With a simple internet search I had seen the new album in almost every corner of the world!! We are very lucky that our record label does such a good job!!
At this very moment we do not have any plans for giving live shows… let alone touring. For me this very moment is good for promote the new album through interviews and personal conversations with the fans.
RtM: The current economic times in Greece is not very good, is not it? How has it affected the lives of headbangers, with issue frequency of shows that will dock in your country, etc?
Nick Banger: Sadly the current situation in Greece is really crappy and miserable. Faults that politicians made for decades, stealing the money of the hard working simple citizen and feeding him with lies reached now to this living nightmare. Of course everyone's life is affected here. More and more people losing their jobs every day, losing their hope. Many of the metal fans here now do not have money to spend as they use to spend before for buying albums or to go to the metal bars or attend concerts. Sadly I am included in this list.
RtM: In our previous conversations before this interview, you showed yourself a real Brazilian metal's fan... Tell us how you met the Brazilian heavy metal and what your favorite bands.
Nick Banger: I like this question! It was 1989 when I got SEPULTURA "Beneath the remains" original tape!! What an awesome album!! This was the first Brazilian metal band I ever listened to! They were very famous here and "Inner Self” video clip was even played by the Greek television! When they released “Arise” they gave a memorable show in Athens!! In early 90s I discovered bands like VIPER, ASTAROTH, OVERDOSE, SARCOFAGO which I was lucky enough to find their vinyls here in Athens!! During the years I collected more Brazilian metal like two amazing compilation LPs called S.P. METAL which in my opinion include some of the best metal from Brazil! The list continues with STRESS, ALTA TENSAO, A CHAVE DO SOL, AZUL LIMAO VULCANO ect… but the sure thing is that I need more LPs!
It's hard to pick up a favorite... I would possibly say SEPULTURA because they were the first I've listened from Brazil… but I love also the first two LPs from VIPER! Hard to choose!
RtM: I want to thank you in the name of Road to Metal Team for this interview and ask you to leave a message for your fans in Brazil! This space is yours.
Nick Banger: I want to thank the team of Road To Metal and especially you Fernnanda for giving us the chance to be presented here so more fellow metalheads from Brazil will have the chance to know us and listen to our music! We had already met some of you and you showed us your support!!
We salute you!!
All fans and friends that need more infoare more than welcome to contact us at: email@example.com
We still have t-shirts available for sale and copies of our 12" that now has become a collector's item at a normal price!!
We want to meet all of you boys and girls! My best wishes to Road To Metal!!!!! BANG YOUR HEADZ & METAL ON!!!
Interview: Fernanda Nascimento
Edition: Eduardo Cadore