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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Interview with Joel McIver

How did you start writing about metal?
I was a teacher in my 20s but wanted to switch to writing for a living, so did some freelance stuff for various magazines until I got a job at Record Collector magazine in London in 1999. I started writing books more or less as soon as I got there. The first one came out in 2000 and then in 2004 I had a bestseller with my Metallica book, which allowed me to quit a year later and work from home as a full-time author, which I’m glad to say I’m still doing eight years later.

What difference do you see in metal bands from the past and now?
I try not to let middle-aged nostalgia affect my view of modern metal, but it’s difficult because when I was a teenager, bands like Iron Maiden, Metallica and Slayer were recording their best albums and I haven’t really heard anyone do better since then. That said, if I were 15 years old now I’m sure I’d be totally into the modern stuff. It’s all a matter of perspective.

Tell me who was your inspiration?
As a writer, I was inspired by the late Tom Hibbert of Q magazine, whose relentless attacks on his subjects blow my mind to this day, not least because his writing was so good-humoured and self-mocking. I never really warmed to writers who portrayed themselves as rock stars. That’s not our function.

Can you share some of the best and worst times which you have seen in your life?
I’ve lost family members and become a father. Those are the worst and best things that can happen to anybody. Life has generally been good, though. I’m lucky enough to have a great job that allows me to be in full control of my time, which in turn has enabled me to be available for my family.

Personally which band do you like the most?
I’m currently as fond of the same mixture of metal (the obvious thrash/death/black/heavy acts) and non-metal (Prince, Beatles, Tom Waits, Bach) as I ever was.

Can you tell us which is your best and worst interview that you did?
Worst: Jon Bon Jovi in 2000, who was bored and distant, but it was my fault really: I couldn’t think of anything interesting to ask him. Best? It was a life-changing experience to meet James Hetfield, Dave Mustaine, Dimebag (just a couple of months before his death) and the guys out of Anthrax and Slayer. Dave Grohl was amazing, just recently. I remember John Williams, the classical guitarist, trying to speak down to my level. Lemmy of course, Bill Wyman, the godly Jack Bruce. Tom Jones, Mike Oldfield, Michael Nyman the composer, Clive James the thinker, John Simm the TV actor, Patrick Moore the astronomer, Katie Price the ditzy model. Having a curry with Rick Wakeman. Helping Bob Geldof write a letter to the Pope. Disagreeing with John Lydon. Having a laugh with Ozzy, Tony, Geezer, Bill, Ronnie. Talking death metal with Slipknot. Interviewing every metal band under the sun – Satanists, murderers and rapists among them – some of whom were great, some of whom made me feel disgusted. Nick Rhodes of Duran Duran phoning me up, and my wife answering the phone and being left speechless. Marc Almond talking about the road accident that nearly killed him. Gary Numan talking about the plane accident that nearly killed him. Bruce Dickinson of Iron Maiden inviting me onto his BBC radio show and telling me “What an amazing career you’ve had” (!). Most of Deep Purple, many times. Alice Cooper – in shock, the week of 9/11. Mike Patton and Billy Gould of Faith No More, some of Green Day. Peter Gabriel meeting my daughter when she was a few months old. Queens Of The Stone Age, Machine Head. Ice-T telling me about life in the army. Stewart Copeland teaching me Italian swear words. Standing on stage at Ronnie Scott’s and pretending to be Miles Davis. Asking Liam Howlett of the Prodigy about Rage Against The Machine. Exchanging fanboy tales about Randy Rhoads and Deep Purple with Tom Morello. Telling Slash I’d heard him swear on kids’ TV and him being mortified. Thomas Fischer of Celtic Frost gleefully reading me a bad review I’d written of his recent album, and me being mortified. It goes on and on – I’ve been doing this for 16 years and have done about 1000 interviews. Most of all, the three autobiographies I’ve co-written – of Glenn Hughes, David Ellefson and Max Cavalera. I did between 30 and 60 hours of interviews with each guy, which gives you a viewpoint into their heads that no-one else gets – not their bandmates, wives or children. It’s quite a responsibility.

As doing interview from a year I know at starting phase everyone do mistake. Can you tell me what is the most stupid thing that you did?
Nothing terrible, just basic rookie errors like lack of preparation, lack of research and so on.

Nowadays what are you working for?
I’m the editor of Bass Guitar Magazine and I contribute to Metal Hammer, Classic Rock, Acoustic, Drummer, Record Collector and The Guardian. I also write two books a year on average and do the occasional sleevenote for record companies.

What are the achievement that came in your life after writing for metal?
Being a good dad comes first.

When you start writing what are things that come in your mind?
How to manage my time so the thing gets done on time.

What do you think metal band should be underground or come to mainstream?
Both are fine.

Anything that you have say to the reader and your fans out there?
Don’t worry, it’ll all be fine in the end. And thank you for the interview.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Interview with Marc Cody Bassist at Feral Babies and Guitar Tech at Dean Guitars.

When and how did you start playing guitar?
-Started playing guitar when I was 14.  I took a few lessons but I was a terrible student.  I decided I didn't want to learn at someone else’s pace and started teaching myself.
Who inspired you to play guitar?
-When I was young it was Metallica and the Ramones.  Now I am inspired by any great musician whether famous or not.

Which band are you playing for currently?
-Feral Babies.  We have been together for about three years now and are about to release our third EP.
What you love about metal and how you define it as per your life?
-I love metal as another form of expression but I enjoy lots of other types of music as well.  There are more emotions in the human spectrum than just anger and I feel that metal, more often than not, leans into that direction. 
 You may have known in many countries metal bands are not respected by society? How you feel knowing such things?
-I actually believe that metal is more appreciated in other countries as opposed to in the United States.  Heavy bands just don’t get all that much attention here anymore.  Where I live, in Tampa, is probably a little more metal-oriented than a lot of other cities.  But as a whole, its not overly popular anymore.
 When you create music; what is the thing that comes to your mind at first?
-Melody.  I am not much of a lyricist so I focus more on the musical aspect rather than the words.

How your journey to DEAN Guitar started?
-I worked at a pizza place for about 5 years before I worked at Dean Guitars.  I would do guitar repairs and things like that at home on the side.  A family member of a friend of an acquaintance got me the job back in 2007 and I have been there ever since.
What you love the most about DEAN Guitars?
-I get to work in a field that I have a passion for.  I don’t have much ambition to do a whole lot else.

Beside Dean which is the company guitar that you like to use?

If you got to chance to work which company do you like to work for?

What you feel when musician copy someone else music to be famous?
-The idea of being a musician is to be creative and express to yourself.  How can you express yourself with stolen emotions?  To copy someone else’s music or style to achieve fame is simply shallow and bland.
  At last what you want to say to all the musician and viewers who will watch it?
-Stay humble always.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Interview with Visan Yonjan Vocalist of Visan N' The Groover from Kathmandu Nepal.

Before we enter the interview I would like to give some brief biography about Visan Yonjon and his journey to Visan and the Groovers:-
Visan Yonjan was born in India on Oct 2nd, 1981. From his early teens, he used to perform in his high school shows, being convinced that one day he would be a rock star. Influenced from the bands such as Guns n' Roses, Bon Jovi, Audioslave, Alterbridge and many rock bands, he dreamed the life he is living now.

In 90s, he used to be in a band called "SPIRAL" and released an album though the album was underrated. After leaving SPIRAL, Yonjan moved on and continued his musical career by releasing his first debut solo album, PREMIERE. It was released in 2007 with back-up studio musician like Raju Lama (The Angels) and Dibesh Mulmi (COBWEB). PREMIERE got noticed as it had got some good musician of  Nepal  and  then he realized that he'd need more session players if he wanted to capitalize on his success.

Than Visan came up with his another band  STOND AMP with other musicians. Their self-titled debut came out in 2009. Underscored by soaring guitar riffs and well-crafted melodies, the band caught the attention. Stond Amp was nominated in different national music awards as well. After that, Band released their 3 videos. "VANANA" AND "PRASHNA" become much liked songs among rock enthusiasts.

Their album gained more popularity after their tour in the Eastern Nepal, Darjeeling and Sikkim garnering critical acclaim for their songs like VANANA, PRASHNA, FARKI AAU and SAPANA. Now, Yonjan has defined his sound and vision to encompass new music and new collaborations and formed Visan N' THE GROOVERS.

Visan N’ the Groovers is a unique band that blends experience of years with fresh passion for music. And now they are working on their upcoming debut album.

Visan N' The Groovers is a Nepali rock band formed in 2011 by Sudip Singh and Visan Yonjan. Before the band formed, Visan Yonjan was in a band called Stond Amp which was disbanded in 2010.

This new band hooked up with ex-band The Buds Band, Sudip Singh (Rhythm Guitar), with Kabeen Shakya (Drums), Sajin Maharjan (Bass), Prajwol Shakya (Lead Guitar) and the former Stond Amp front man Visan Yonjan.

In 2011, the band recorded and released their debut singles, Kaaran. It was well received and the band noticed that they have established a separate identity. The band performed in various shows and gigs inside the country in 2011. The Groovers released their second singles Chaahanna Ma in 2012. Although all the threats visible in Nepali music scenario, Visan N' The Groovers is resiliently moved ahead to create wave in the rock music filed in Nepal by giving away their best.

Bibek:-How did your band start?
Visan:- I used to have a band named as Spiral in 90’s but it didn’t last for long so I tried something new by doing solo.After few months of releasing solo, I formed another band named Stoned Amp but after 2 years we disbanded and again I moved on and formed a new band called Visan N' The Groovers. It was formed with the member of Stoned Amp and The Buds Band.

Bibek: - Have you ever played outside Nepal
Visan: - Yes...Outside valley likes Dharan, Pokhara, Narayangharh, Butwal and Hongkong as in abroad...

Bibek: - From which band have you been inspired?
Visan: - I do listen all international rock bands. I don’t have a particular cause I I have respect for all kind of music. So I listen all type of music.

Bibk: - Which was the first song you played for the first time in your guitar?
Visan: - Oh I can’t remember it might be gun n rose’s stuffs...

Bibek: - How do you feel when sound man is blamed for the bad sound system?
Visan: - Of course we feel bad for bad sound system but is it their mistake? Many times I have seen young kids doing this thing. They are even unknown about their gadgets and blame it to the sound system. Hahaha I just want to say before you become a musician please guys get some knowledge about your gadgets.

Bibek: - Are you supported by your family?
Vison: - Yes I am...

Bibek: - People think unsuccessful person listen and join metal band. Is that true?
Visan: - Who said you such things? There are many people who are just not only musician but also have mastered in many fields other than music. So it doesn’t make any sense.

Bibek:- How often do you jam with your band?
Visan:- We do when we get free time from our work.

Bibek:- Except music what do you do for your living?
Visan:- I have one video production office. So, except music I work behind the scene.

Bibek:- Do you believe a bit of exposure is required for uplifting our local rock and metal scenario??
Visan:- It’s all about market brother .. As we know we have very small market in Nepali music scenario... We have to do exposure to bring new talents in it.

Bibek:- How much you struggled in this field?
Visan:- Yeah I struggled to some extent and I guess everyone does and did..

Bibek:- What do you want to say to the upcoming Bands in Nepal and to those, organizers and other bands?
Visan:- Play it loud!! Learn something more before u enter in this music stuff. And for organizer you must have to respect us in order to expect 100% from us guys. And when we are on stage it’s your duty to make the police away from all the stuff. When we are playing music we are working for you.
And other band please stop copying someone else music. It’s a crime brother!


Monday, September 23, 2013

Interview with Binay Yadav; Vocalist of Circle's End from Darjeeling, Gorkhaland.

The band was formed in the year 2004 comprising Ajit on skins, Dipendra on guitars, Adeep on bass guitars and finally with Binay on vocals. We were good friends from the same locality and from the same school, where, the band was formed. But the band first kicked off on stage in the year 2006. Between the intervals of two years from 2004-2006 we tried to know the musical taste of each other and we were experimenting with a new sound under the shelter of genre, “metal”. 
There is no pre planned vision of the band, but we are moving on and on hoping to influence people in large and reflecting back the image of the society and the world around us. We as a band believe that there should be some sorts of contribution by our side towards the society we are live in and the message we convey through music must be true, specific and reflect the true picture of natives. 
That are the anti-social things which is burning inside of us and it’s just because of those things we create our music in the way we are creating. We want to rule people’s heart and that will be our biggest achievement.
We believe in ourselves, some people may not understand what we are doing but that is also needed. We welcome both criticism and appreciation because there is no value of light without dark. I hope u know what I mean Ha.. Ha... Ha...
As a band there were many hurdles which we were trying to overcome but as we were likely to solve that, again new snags stood at the way to our success. So we tried to relate our problems, and each and everything in this universe with a circle, which has no end or beginning and in the same way beginning and ending of music cannot be defined. So like this we finally came up with a new name “circle’s end”.
For me “Binay”, music is a means to express my feelings and the way I see the world around me. Whatever we think and see we channel it through our music. The lyrical contents of our songs are filled with anger and aggression and against the anti socials and as our music is kind of fast and heavy, this is the way of my music. As we listen to all types of music but often we listen to the bands like, Black Sabbath, Death, Megadeth, Machine Head, Annihilator, Mudvayne,Iron maiden etc. We listen to various types of music but we do our music it in our own cause it’s the reflection of what we see and what we feel.
I always going to remember the first show of ours, it was late December of 2006, we had took part in a rock competition in our own home town but after playing through the finals we lost that competition but the way audience and other competing bands reacted to us was a kind of a green signal to the band and we realized that its gonna work, the way we are doing but, we have to work a lot in our music and team work.
We are really glad that people are always by our side and they like the music we play. We promise as a band to come up with materials to quench the thirst of metal to all our fans and whoever supports us directly or any indirect ways, ”horns up”. 
There are no worst experiences but if I will have to mention the best experiences, there are many. Everywhere we perform we get the positive reaction from the audience and that is the best part we enjoy and adds up to our best experiences.
The greatest achievement which we believe is that through the music we play and through our lyrical contents we influence people in each and every time we perform and every time they listen to us. But as to name few of the achievements are: Winner of blossom fest Sikkim 2011, Winner of youthopia (SIT) 2010 and Winner of pyrokinesis, Assam 2011.
Currently we are we are doing some studio for our Ep which is likely to be out at the end of this year and with the release of the Ep we will be out for the promotional tours in India this year.
It is hard to survive in Underground scene. Many good band disbanded just they can’t survive in here. But it doesn’t mean it is easier in mainstream too. People have to struggle every where no one can be in top in once. Everyone have to think a new way to be in heart of people if they can, they will survive in any scene. In my opinion on people thought on metal should be underground, depends upon place to place. 
In a place where there peace and prosperity it should not be underground and there is no field for that. But in a place where metal is suppressed by social diseases its obvious for the band to be underground but as there is message in each and every song the band should try to go mainstream and make people understand and spread the message to the people in large what they really mean.
We thank Bibek Bhattrai for giving us space and beautiful opportunity to reach to our fans and to the people at large. It was a great pleasure to share our ideas and views through this interview.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Interview with Vikrant Of Underside a Nepali Metal Band....

•How did the band UNDERSIDE come to life? Is there is any specific event which helped you guys to bring this monster out
It was around 2010 we got together and started jamming... But hadn't thought about forming a band... But as we started everything felt like we should start a band kind of thing, so here we are now... Four years after. Kicking everyone’s rash…

•What it makes you to choose the name “UNDERSIDE”? What is the ideology of the band and with what ideology does the band name stand for the band?
Nothing special... it was just a random name that Abishek came with... And we all felt good about this name... Not too much aggressive but still deep under...
•Do you remember you first show? How it felt to be in front playing and singing again?
As far as I know it was that dehumanization gig at silence street.. Felt alive and was an amazing moment...

•Who Create lyrics of song in the band? What is your Inspirational point to make those words into a beautiful song of composition?
Abishek does all the lyrics. As he is the vocalist and he is good at that.. So, we let him create his own lines to speak…
I guess it’s a daily living thing that u get into, you experience, happiness, anger, frustration...can be anything…

•Normally people consider you as a Metal Core band but some time it is heard that you are Thrash Metal? Is this thing is true?
What is metal core...? Can’t explain you really... we do what we like... there is no boundaries when making music... music we make is just a mélange of old school and new…might be thrash, rock, blues etc…

•How you and your band define Metal Music?
Something that we all like and are good at I guess...
•After doing many gigs in Kathmandu, and going on world tour and Evolving to life tour…What are you planning for 2013-14; any song release, Album Lunch or Tour?
Ep release... Australian tour in November and may more tour coming in 2014.

•How was the feeling of world tour and Evolving to Life tour? Which is the gig which you even have enjoyed and have seen a good support from the people?
Was amazing... We had such a fun... Every gig we did went amazingly well... our fans are so loyal and crazy at the same... We love them all…

•What you guys are doing these days?
Making new songs.. Practicing and getting ready for our Australian tour... 
•What is your influence? Which band, Guitarists make you think oh, I can be like this one... ha ha ha
Influences can be anything, any kind of music. I have been listening to the bands like Mumford and Sons, Alt-j, C2C these days and they are totally out of what we usually play.
Pantera, Dimebag and Van Halen are my man (Vikrant)...

•In general Metal is mot like and appreciated by society what are your opinions for this?
We really don't give a big fuck... If our fans like us that’s more than enough for us...

•Metal band are struggling to survive in the scene? Many good bands have been disbanded? What is your feeling in this? Did your guys have such experience till the date?
We are still alive and kicking... And we hope for the best... One day at a time…

•Wanna sy something to the fan around the world?
Support us, like you always did to us...