The Glorious Heavy Metal Force of the Almighty Dragonhammer
Dragonhammer has returned with the almighty Obscurity, their fourth full length magnum opus now available from My Kingdom Music. Fans of bands such as HammerFall and Freedom Call will find an everlasting comradery when encountering the glorious anthems Dragonhammer has bestowed upon the world at large. Highwire Daze Online recently caught up with two members of the Dragonhammer army to find out more about their exhilarating new album, recent tour supporting the one and only Freedom Call, chilly stories from the road, and a whole lot more! Read on…
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Dragonhammer, and how long the band has been together.
Max: Hi guys I’m Max Aguzzi the singer / guitarist of Dragonhammer.
Giulio: Hi everybody I’m Giulio Cattivera the keyboard player of Dragonhammer.
Max: The band was born in 1995 founded by myself and Gae Amodio (bass) while today in the official lineup we have Giulio Cattivera (keyboards), Flavio Cicconi (guitar), Andrea Gianangeli (Drums).
Is there any overall story or concept behind the title Obscurity?
Max: The album is the second part of a concept story started with the previous release “The X Experiment”, it will continue with next album (could be the last chapter of the concept).
A world devastated by war and economic crisis is now adrift and men no longer believe in anything! Only the discovery of “something” that proves the existence of our “Creator” can bring again harmony to the world.
Follow this story on: www.dragonhammer.com
Select any two songs from Obscurity and what inspired the lyrics.
Max: “Remember my name” talks about the death of one important character of the story and my inspiration came from sad stories of some friends of mine and of my relatives. “The eye of the storm” speaks about the difficulties of life: also into a storm if we’ll be united we can win!
Who produced Obscurity and what was it like working with them?
Max: Obscurity was produced by Dragonhammer but me and Giulio Cattivera have managed the recordings and the sound engineering. We had some great collaborators like: Alessio Cattivera (Giulio’s brother) for the final mixing, Simone Mularoni for the mastering and Alb Bandino for drums editing and guitars reamping.
We are really satisfied about the groove and sound: power, epic and metal!
Who did the cover art on Obscurity and how much input did you have on it?
Max: The picture of the cover is my idea, it represents the end of this chapter: the amazing girl (the baby in the previous chapter) is killed and the mighty creature covers her with mystical energy to try to save her from the incumbent obscurity!
It was realized again by the Artside Company!
How did new members Flavio Cicconi and Andrea Gianangeli become involved with the band and what other bands have they been involved with prior to Dragonhammer?
Max: Andrea joined the band after the release of “The X Experiment” while Flavio joined 1 year later.
They both were playing with local bands in Rome before coming on board with us.
I think this lineup is really much powerful than in the past!
What could one expect from a live Dragonhammer show?
Max: Regarding our show? We are real and not a bad Facebook’s fake! We don’t buy “Likes” and we don’t pay for a virtual fame in the web! Of course we are not the “new Mozart” of rock but we can play what we record on our album! We just like to play. We love this and the people understand by appreciating the show: exchange of energy, power and metal! The Dragonhammer show is a fucking metal concert!
How did your tour with Freedom Call go and what were some of the highlights.
Giulio: The European tour with Freedom Call was a fundamental moment for the band: we had the chance to play outside of Italy for almost the entire duration of the tour. This has allowed us to better spread our music and to have a good response from those who did not know us before. But at the same time, it has allowed us to meet all those fans who were already listening to our music for years but who had never seen us live. Both creates very strong feelings that I wish to every musician.
What are you looking forward to the most about your upcoming show with Firewind?
Giulio: It will surely be an opportunity to know Firewind in person. We also hope it is an opportunity to create an important metal event in an environment that has been characterized by a fall in attendance at such concerts in recent years. And we believe that a band like Firewind along with two historic Roman bands can help reviving the Italian and Roman metal scene.
Any strange or scary stories on the road or at a show?
Giulio: It was bad enough on the last Swedish date in Finnspång city. It was almost winter and just after the show we got to the car to get to the Copenhagen airport in Denmark where we had our flight to Rome. A night trip of over 300 miles among the Swedish forests alone in the van with a 0 degrees temperature and a broken heating! We could not stop somewhere to warm us because we were in danger of missing the flight. We did shifts to drive but every time the driver was at risk of falling asleep because of the cold and the sleep. Andrea did not speak for more than 5 hours, we thought we should have looked for a new drummer! Once arrived in Rome, most of us had very high fever and the others did not talk for a week ahahaha
If Dragonhammer could open up for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
Giulio: In August of 2015 we had the chance to open up for the show of Rhapsody of Fire in Rome. We can confirm that one of the greatest satisfaction for a musician is to play with bands that are part of your inspirations. For this reason, it would be great to be able to open up for Hammerfall or Stratovarius or maybe for Helloween or Deep Purple and AC/DC.
Any chance of Dragonhammer coming over to the States to do some shows?
Giulio: For us it would be a pleasure as well as an opportunity to grow for the band. I do not think it will be possible soon, because at least for the entire 2018, we have to consolidate our music in those places where, thanks to the European Tour of The X Experiment, we’ve “sown” with great results. Once this is done I believe that Dragonhammer would be ready for the States as well.
What’s up next for Dragonhammer?
Giulio: After coming back with a new album, now it’s time to come back playing on stage maybe as headliner in those places where we did well. Moreover, since with this new line-up we have a great synergy, and since four years from The X Experiment are not so many but neither a few, we want to come back in studio reasonably soon for a new Album.
Any final words of wisdom?
Giulio: Always go on your way with authenticity and professional humility.
In recent times, we have seen so many bands creating a false life on social networks just to appear as they would like, but then in reality they are far from anything else. You do not have to lose the real sense of going to the concerts or listening to music. Try to be always yourself everywhere and in every circumstance, no more, no less. Making music is not a competition and being music experts does not mean knowing how to criticize everyone.
Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions! Hope to see your band here in the States one day.
Giulio and Max: Thanks to you for the time spent together, we hope to see you soon! Ciao!
Max Aguzzi – Lead Guitar and Voice
Gae Amodio – Bass Guitar
Flavio Cicconi – Guitar
Giulio Cattivera – Keyboards
Andrea Gianangeli – Drums
(Interview by Ken Morton)
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