Eluveitie: Bringing The Magic to the Sunset Strip

eluvietieivo1Eluveitie converged upon the Los Angeles area. bringing their own imaginative brand of folk metal to House Of Blues on the world famous Sunset Strip.  Performing songs from their various albums, including their latest masterwork Origins, the Swiss collective had the audience absolutely captivated throughout the entire performance. Just prior to their magical set, we caught up with guitarist Ivo Henzi to find out more about the amazing new album, touring the States, their thoughts on Hollywood. and other topics of intrigue.  Read on…

Introduce yourself and tell me what you do in the band and how long have you’ve been with Eluveitie.
Hi, I am Ivo from Eluveitie, I’m a guitar player. I’ve been in the band for now 10 years.

How’s the tour going? What are some of the highlights?
This tour has been amazing so far. We have been on tour for about eight or nine days, even more. I lost track, we had about eight shows that were amazing so far. I think the highlight was for me so far, Dallas. Dallas was really great. Good crowd, good venue, good backstage, good food. Everything was just perfect.

eluveitie4How many times has your band played out here in Hollywood?
I think here in Hollywood, its about five times, here in House of Blues, three four times about.

What are you impressions of Hollywood now that you’ve been here a few times?
Its great, it’s great. I think we all kind of love this place which we imagined as children as a big place where all the stars come from. So yeah, we really love it. We love the clubs, we love the food here, we love most people, not all. [laughs] And yeah, I’ve been sightseeing a bit and it was really great. I went to the Warner Brothers studios, there was a tour guide there and you could watch behind the scenes, watch all the film sets and it was really interesting.

71rXizdfJjL._SL1417_Is there any story or concept behind Origins, the new album?
Yes, Chrigel is the one who was making lyrics and making the concept of the album. I mean there’s like a red line through the album. Its a bit less on the Helvetios . Helvetios was much more like a whole story if you could say so.  But, this one is a bit more mixed, a bit more open than we used to do it. I don’t want to go much deeper because Chrigel is the one who likes making lyrics with all the factual background, the historical background. This is like, as always, really important for us to have a good background, and we already tried to make lyrics or topics which have substance, historically substance, substantial stuff.

How do you think Origins compares to the previous albums?
I think Origins is a natural evolvement or progression from Helvetios. It has similarities, I guess but we also try to make new things we never did before. Like just some musical parts which are not typical for us. But we try to include them in a natural way so that it still sounds like Eluveitie. You know it’s, maybe some people don’t really hear it, maybe it’s so well included, I don’t know. I mean I hear them immediately and I’m surprised the feedback has been amazing so far. I’m surprised that no one really got pissed off because of some parts with it. But, this is a good sign. People like it.

eluveitie3What song do you enjoy playing the most live?
King.” I think that one includes a lot of different parts, aspects of our music. Like, the fast parts, the really folky parts – the metal parts. It’s like a package of all the good things.

What can one expect from your live show tonight?
You can expect a furious show of folk instruments combined with amazing speed metal – no, just kidding. I think, I mean, it’s hard to tell. We just try to be natural about these things. We just do. Just naturally evolves what we do on stage. Some parts we, of course have some directions of what’s going to happen. But, I think you’ll hear a lot of different things like slow songs, some calm moments through the set, some furious moments through the set. I think you’ve got lots of different emotions. That’s what we are. That’s the main concept of our live shows, to have a lot of different aspects.

Are you involved with any other bands outside of this one?
Not actively, no. I have some side projects that I’m doing but Eluveitie is my main focus. It’s the main musical thing I’m doing, so at the moment – no. But, our other members have. Anna has her project.

I saw her solo album on sale downstairs. Did any of you play on that?
I did play some stuff on that, yeah. But she’s the songwriter. She basically did all the songs, I was just a slave. [laughs]

eluveitie5Do you think you’ll be doing any acoustic albums or performances?
We are planning an acoustic album, another one. Yes. But, actually we don’t know when or there’s no date set for that but it will happen eventually. Acoustic shows? We’re still talking and looking into that so, we did some acoustic shows in the past with Evocation.  When Evocation came out, we did some shows, some festivals, just acoustic. We have to see about – what’s the interest of the people is and if they’re interested in acoustic performances. We don’t know, let’s see. Maybe with the new Evocation album. That’d make sense.

What’s up next for you guys after this tour is over?
We go home for about a week and then we go on another tour in Europe for about 6 weeks until mid December. So we’re really busy. All over Europe, which is a long tour.

Do you have any messages for your bands fans out here in the Los Angeles area?
You fans in the Los Angeles area are one of the greatest. Please come to our shows. Next time as well, bring your friends and families so we can fill up the venues, thank you very much. You are the best.

Eluveitie is:
Merlin Sutter – Drums
Chrigel Glanzmann – Vocals, Mandola & Mandolin, Tin & Low Whistles, Bagpipes, Bodhràn
Anna Murphy – Hurdygurdy, Vocals, Flute
Nicole Ansperger – Fiddle
Ivo Henzi – Guitars
Rafael Salzmann – Guitars
Patrick Kistler – Tin & Low Whistles, Bagpipe
Kay Brem – Bass

(Interview by Ken Morton – Photos by Jack Lue)

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Erasure at Majestic Ventura Theater

P1050959Erasure at Majestic Ventura Theater, October 26 2014

I really didn’t know what to expect from a live concert by this infamous duo popular group. Considering they have been around 30 years, I was hoping this would be a treat and it was. Andy Bell came out’ on the opening number, in a silver glittering top hat with a slim jacket to match. The shirt he had on said Joy Division from back in the early eighties but had a lot of glittery silver on it and a rainbow of color panels shining as well. We find out later, after 3 numbers, it was a tank top, when he took his jacket off. He also wore baggy long pants that he later took off to skimpy black shorts. Considering we were within walking distance to the beaches on Ventura’s coast, this type of outfit was a great piece of work to finally show us and was very fitting for the hot theater crowd. After a couple of songs, right when the hat came off, Andy pulled a fuzzy stuffed white rabbit out of the hat to charm the audience. All through the night’s show, if you were near the front section of the venue, you got to hear Andy’s humorous jokes and fun attitude with his own songs. Those in the back of the auditorium might have caught a few of these references Andy was doing by sight, at least, but maybe not by hearing what Andy said.

ANDY BELL 2Erasure played 90 minutes and then came back and did 2 songs for the encore. 20 songs in all were done this evening. Only 3 songs were performed from their new album The Violet Flame.

Vince Clark was in a nice dressed suit, open jacket, with a nice dark vest. Mr. Vince Clark, programmer genius, pulled off being the straight man for Andy Bell with ease. However, when it came to introductions of the members, on stage, a very appreciative audience gave Vince Clark a long loud applause that lasted way close to two minutes. Beside keys and computer stuff for the evening mixture of sounds and music, Vince Clark also played an acoustic guitar for a couple of the songs. The crowd sang along and danced around, in place, where they were and enjoyed this upbeat joyous entertainment of songs and laughter. If you’re looking for a great lift to raise your spirits up, then go see Erasure at least once and give them a try. You won’t be disappointed by Andy and Vince that is for sure. Thanks guys, the drive from Los Angeles to see you play, was well worth my hour drive each way.

Below is the set list of songs to be performed from the band as written:
Oh L’ Amour, Star, Reason, Breath Of Life, You Surround Me, Elevation, I Lose Myself, Drama!, Victim, Ship, Sacred, Breath, Joan, Blue Savannah, Chorus, Love To Hate You, Respect, Chains. Encore songs: Always and Sometimes.

(Review and Photos by Jonathan D. Wright)

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The Dark Progressions of Tantal

tantal2014_2Based out of the vast confines of Russia, the mighty Tantal present progressive death metal in its darkest hour. Expectancy is their seconds masterwork, a thrilling collection of songs that should thoroughly intrigue metal fans throughout this dismal planet.  We had the chance to interview two of the Tantal members to find out more about their devastating new album, the metal scene in Russia, their stunning lyrical content, and other subjects of deep contemplation.  Read on as we explore the somber progressions of Tantal

Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Tantal, and how long the band has been together.
Dmitry: My name is Dmitry – rhythm and solo guitars, lyrics. I’m in the band since its foundation – 2004. The original members who have participated since 2004 – Vyacheslav (drums) and Michael (bass).
Milana: Hi, I’m Milana, the vocalist since 2013.

Where is the band based out of and what is your local metal scene like there?
Dmitry: One half of the band lives in Moscow and the second in Moscow region. But for the world we usually tell that we are from Moscow, Russia. As for the local metal scene: Moscow is the capital of Russia, so there are loads of metal bands playing in different genres: classical heavy metal, thrash, death metal, death core and so on…I think that there is a lack of progressive metal bands who don’t follow the modern “core” trend, but we try to improve the situation with our music, we try to make it original and interesting as much as we can.

expectancy1Is there any story or concept behind the CD title Expectancy?
Dmitry: Yes, “Expectancy” has a concept. One day everyone starts asking themselves: “Who am I?”, “Why was I born and what should I do in this life?”. “What do I need to change in my life to be happy?”, “Why am I so miserable?” and so on. Every song of the album describes each period of the “inner search”. It tells about a person’s attempts to find meaning of their life, to find themselves, and to understand themselves. As result, it leads them to despair and destroys all their hopes. In the end they understand that all their life was pointless.

Select two songs from Expectancy and what inspired the lyrics.
Dmitry:All the lyrics are based on my own feelings, thoughts and experience, everything is very personal.The very first song “Through the years” – is about state when you’ve grown up and got a little bit wiser, in other words when you become adult. You start to look back and analyze all your actions and results you’ve achieved. Of course, most of the people prefer not to show that they regret about something but deep inside we all would like to change some aspects in our lives. During this period, we start to think about our appropriation in life, start asking “global questions”. This song describes all that I felt at this period of “getting wiser than I was before”.

The last track called “Under the weight of my sorrow I crawl” is about my feelings again, how hard it is to live without a purpose, without the beloved whom you have betrayed or lost. Every day is the same; you are emptied and have to live with your recollections and regrets. You can do nothing to change the past. It’s like the cross you must bear for the rest of your wasted life.

Who did the artwork for Expectancy and how much input did you have on it?
Dmitry: The artwork was created by the famous artist Gustavo Sazes who works with “Arch Enemy”, “Gus G”, “Amaranthe”, “Morbid Angel” and many other metal bands. He also did the artwork for our previous album “The Beginning Of The End” and it was fantastic, that is why we decided to get back to him with “Expectancy”.

I wanted everyone who takes a look at the cover and through the booklet to feel depression, desperation, loneliness, devastation and hopelessness. So I wanted a dark and sad picture, but not necessarily in dark colors. Looking at it I see the reflection of the inner world of a desperate and lonely man. Butterflies fly through the whole booklet symbolize all our hopes that are destined to die.

How did you wind up signing to Bakerteam?
Dmitry: In March 2014 we finished the album and got the final mix. After that we signed a contract with Russian label “Mazzar Records” who released “Expectancy” in Russia. But we also wanted to spread our new music all other the world, so I started to send our digital promo pack to the different labels outside Russia via email. One of them was “Scarlet Records” whose management offered us to make a deal with their sub label “Bakerteam Records”. It was the best offer among the others which we got, so we said “yes, let’s do it” and now the album will be released in Europe and USA in the end of October 2014. For this release we prepared the bonus sections which is a little bit different from Russian edition and includes an alternative acoustic version of the song from the previous album called “In The End pt.2 (Epitaph)”. I hope everyone will enjoy “Expectancy” music and its artwork this autumn.

What could one expect from a live Tantal show?
Dmitry: First of all we try to do it as much dynamic as possible: different guitar tricks, work with audience, some jokes or funny things. In other words we try to show not only our musical skills but also give audience a chance to participate a little bit at the concert. But the very important for me is the bands’ dynamic – I try to release and to give all my energy to the people who visit our gig even if there are only few guys in front of the stage.

As for the set-list: now we play all songs from “Expectancy” album, at our Moscow presentation we also did a little acoustic show there we played one of the song from our previous album. I hope to continue this tradition; maybe we will do acoustic version of some our new songs. Sometimes we play cover-song, it’s Black SabbathDie Young” in the name of DIO \m/

Has Tantal ever played here in the States or plan to do so in future days?
Dmitry: No, we didn’t play in the States…you know it’s a question of the distance because we are too far and the tickets are very expensive. But deep inside I still believe that maybe someday we can do that. It would be cool to do it, for our little band it would be the great opportunity and honor. Definitely, if we get an offer to play there we will take this chance.

If you could open up for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
Milana: I would be eager to open up for The Agonist! I admire their new vocalist, Vicky, she, as well as their previous, is one of the brightest and professional female vocalists in metal. And I also think it would be cool for two bands, both fronted by girls singing in clean and extreme styles, to share the stage.

How did Milana Solovitskaya wind up being in the band and what is her background in music?
Dmitry: I found Milana at one of musical forums in the beginning of 2013…one year after our original vocalist Sofia decided to leave the band. At rehearsals and at the studio Milana behaved very professionally, she was ready and all these facts distinguished her from the other candidates. She recorded for us two songs from “Expectancy” and her clean voice fitted very well to our new music, after that we decided to do her a part of the band.

Milana: At the moment I’m studying for an academic singer in the university. I’ve taken classes of different vocal styles and techniques for about 5 past years, mostly of academic style, though. As for participating in other bands, there was one under the arm band, it’s not worth mentioning…

What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most after hearing Expectancy for the very first time?
Milana: The atmosphere, the spirit of the music. For me it’s the most important about music – to catch the core of it. And I suppose Tantal’s got some deep core to feel through.

Dmitry: Melodies, a lot of beautiful guitar and vocal melodies. We tried hard to do our songs easy listening in spite of the fact that some of them are “proggy”, complicated and very heavy…it’ some kind of the balance we try to keep in our music.

What’s up next for Tantal?
Dmitry: Till the end of this year we have booked some shows in different cities of Russia, so we are going to play there to promote the album. For the 2015 I hope we can visit Europe and continue to tour among Russian cities, but at the moment I can’t tell anything specific.Also, we are preparing new songs for the third album. At the moment we have 6 composed instrumentals with some lyrics and vocal melodies. As a tradition the new album will be different from the previous ones, but it will have all TANTAL’s distinctive marks such as complicated compositions with catchy melodies, dark and melancholic mood.

Any final words of wisdom?
Milana: Thanks for the interview and stay metal!

Dmitry: Thanks everyone for your support, we are really grateful for any comments, likes or emails from all our listeners, it gives us strength and inspiration to move forward. I wish everyone to find its meaning of life and purpose.

Visit us at our web pages and don’t hesitate to drop us the line here:
www.tantalweb.ru
www.facebook.com/tantalofficial

Tantal is:
Milana Solovitskaya- vocals
Vyacheslav Gyrovoy – drums
Alexander Strelnikov – guitars
Michael Krivuletz – bass
Dmitry Ignatiev – guitars

(Interview by Ken Morton)

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ATREYU Announce Final Show of 2014

ac7e96e4a9d9de3d2a6060d094c76685ATREYU to Close out 2014 With Hometown Christ-mas Show at The Observatory in Orange County

Show Takes Place December 20

Band Came out of Hibernation in 2014, Working on New Album, Its First Since 2009

(New York, N.Y.): Fresh off their main stage appearance at this weekend’s KNOTFEST in Southern California, which was preceded by an equally anticipated appearance at Aftershock and an off-the-hook warm-up show at the Chain Reaction in Anaheim in their native Orange County, which sold out in under 30 minutes, ATREYU will play a headlining hometown show at The Observatory in Santa Ana, California. The show will take place on December 20.

Tickets for this can’t-be-missed, all-ages show will go on sale on Friday, October 31 at 10AM PT.

“It has been far too long since we did a proper, full-scale headlining show at home,” said singer Alex Varkatzas. “We are rehearsing and pumped up to play this legendary OC venue that we have all attended so many shows at over the years.”

Chain Reaction was the appetizer,” echoed drummer Brandon Saller. “This is the main course. The Observatory is, bar none, the best venue in Orange County. We’re exited to rip the roof off of it.”

The band is writing and demo’ing its forthcoming album, the first since 2009′s Congregation of the Damned.

ATREYU entered a period of hibernation and dormancy in 2011, after establishing itself as one of the key band of the American metal revival that dominated the ’00s. The band was recently spotlighted in VH1′s Everything You Need to Know About Metalcore list, highlighting ATREYU’s status as one of the architects of that scene and sound.

The band is equally excited about the hometown holiday show and about plans for 2015. Stay tuned for further ATREYU updates.

For More Info Visit:
http://atreyuofficial.com
https://www.facebook.com/Atreyu
https://twitter.com/atreyuofficial
http://instagram.com/atreyuofficial

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SAYWECANFLY’S ‘BETWEEN THE ROSES’ TOUR LANDS IN 26 U.S. CITIES

121TORONTO – Braden Barrie will showcase his one-man acoustic act SayWeCanFly throughout the United States beginning this week with the Between the Roses Tour presented by ConcertBlogger.com.

A road veteran at the ripe old age of 19, Barrie has nearly 300 live performances under his belt, and dedicated following that he has established a deep connection with.

“My favorite part about playing shows in new places is talking to everyone who is there and building relationships with the people who listen to my music,” Barrie said. “The majority of upcoming dates will be completely new cities to me, which I am very excited about. I know kids in some of these cities have been asking me to play a show close to them for quite a while, so it’s nice to finally be able to do that. I played about 10 of these cities on my last tour, which is amazing because I’ve made some friends in those places.”

The Between the Roses Tour will be an all-acoustic package, with Joel Faviere and Rookie of the Year joining SayWeCanFly on all dates and specials appearances by Jason Lancaster at select venues.

122Barrie has built up SayWeCanFly by using a strong social media presence to connect his heartening songs with a large audience of young people, offering a sense of hope, inspiration, and understanding through his highly personal lyrics.

“Performing in front of a crowd is one of my favorite things to do,” said Barrie. “Second to being in the studio, it is one of the closest connections I can ever have with my songs. When I share them with a room full of people who are connecting to them, it makes me feel vulnerable but at the same time it makes me so happy knowing my words could potentially bring clarity to someone. Being in front of people who truly care about what I am doing gives me so much inspiration to continue doing it.”

On this tour, SayWeCanFly will debut material from the upcoming album, “Between the Roses,” which will see a release in 2015. The tour will make an extra special stop at the House of Blues in Houston, where Barrie will share his 20th birthday celebration with the fans he has so deeply connected with.

“Sometimes the future is very uncertain and can be frightening, but I just want everyone to know that everything is always okay in the end, and once you take the jump to do something you were scared to do, the fear will go away,” Barrie said. “Everyone who listens to my music has taught me that valuable lesson, and has inspired me to do things I was scared to do. Without those who support SayWeCanFly, it wouldn’t exist. I am so thankful to be able to walk down this road, and to feel like what I am doing is helping people in some way.”

SayWeCanFly – Between the Roses Tour Dates:
10/29/14 Wed. The Waiting Room, Buffalo, NY
10/30/14 Thu. Boulder Coffee Co., Rochester, NY
10/31/14 Fri. Game Changer World, Howell, NJ
11/1/14 Sat. DV8 Nightclub, Providence, RI
11/2/14 Sun. Middle East, Cambridge, MA
11/3/14 Mon. The Space, Hamden, CT
11/4/14 Tue. Knitting Factory, Brooklyn, NY
11/5/14 Wed. Revolution, Long Island, NY
11/6/14 Thu. Crocodile Rock, Allentown, PA
11/7/14 Fri. Shakas, Virginia Beach, VA
11/8/14 Sat. Green Street Club, Greensboro, NC
11/9/14 Sun. Kings Baracade, Raleigh, NC
11/10/14 Mon. New Brookland Tavern, Columbia, SC
11/11/14 Tue. Swayze’s, Atlanta, GA
11/12/14 Wed. Murray Hill Theatre, Jacksonville, FL
11/13/14 Thu. Bombshell, Orlando, FL
11/15/14 Sat. The Jam, Gainesville, FL
11/17/14 Mon. The Feed & Seed, Lafayette, LA
11/18/14 Tue. House of Blues, Houston, TX
11/19/14 Wed. Jack’s Patio, San Antonio, TX
11/20/14 Thu. Prophet Bar, Dallas, TX
11/21/14 Fri. The Vanguard, Tulsa, OK
11/22/14 Sat. Nathan P Murphy’s Bar, Springfield, MO
11/23/14 Sun. Reggies, Chicago, IL
11/24/14 Mon. Frankies Inner City, Toledo, OH
11/25/14 Tue. Mac’s Bar, Lansing, MI

www.saywecanfly.net
www.facebook.com/saywecanfly
www.twitter.com/saywecanfly
www.instagram.com/saywecanfly
www.youtube.com/saywecanfly

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