The Conquerors of the World Tour made its way onto the wilds of the Sunset Strip, bringing a massive amount of world class Symphonic Death Metal to sunny Southern California. Co-headlining the tour was the mighty Septicflesh from Athens, Greece, unleashing a mesmerizing performance that will be remembered for the dark and glorious ages ahead. Prior to their explosive presentation, we caught up with guitarist Christos Antoniou on the patio at the House Of Blues on the Sunset Strip to find out more about their thrilling new album Titan on Prosthetic Records, the present and future tours, and other topics of intrigue. Read on…
Introduce yourself and tell me what you do in Septicflesh.
Yes, this is Christos Antoniou from Septicflesh and I play the guitar and I make the orchestration for the band.
How’s this “Conquerors of the World” tour going, what have been some of the highlights?
Well, it’s going really well. We have a strong package, you know, Septicflesh and Fleshgod Apocalypse are two of the most active bands in the symphonic death black metal. We had great moments in Chicago, New York, Seattle. It’s really… really going really well.
Let’s talk about the new album. Is there any overall story or concept behind the title?
It’s not the concept album, although it has many similarities, you know, some songs have common elements. As example, we have the song “Burn” and “Prometheus“, which is the bringer of fire. Then we have the song “Titan“. And then we have “Prototype” and “Order of Dracul” … that they talk about the manipulation of the masses through fear. And we have “Ground Zero” which acts as a prologue to “The First Immortal“.
How do you think Titan compares to all the other Septic Flesh releases?
Well, although it sounds cliche, you know, to say “This is our best album”, the facts are facts, you know? And now we can see that we have overpassed the previous album, which was the most successful, “The Great Mass“. We are in many big magazines, album of the month. We are in Norway, in Holland, in Belgium, in France, in Greece. This is a fact, you know? And also we have very good feedback from North America. And, it stuns for us, also, the most important, is the feedback from the fans, you know? Because this is the most importantly, that the fan base like the material and we are in a good path, and for us, “Titan” stuns as our best album, the most mature, most electrical work we have ever done. Because, it was our vision to go the band a step forward, you know? And not copy an album like “The Great Mass“, which would be a really big mistake.
What is the most difficult part about working with an orchestra and choir?
Well, you know, I have studied classical music and I know how to work straight. It’s not something that I find difficult. The most important is to… to give them as many details as you can to the orchestra in order to make the music they’re participation much better. And it’s always exciting for me to compose and orchestrate for an orchestra, and it will always be, Since I was a student, our dreams were to see an amazing orchestra perform our works. And now we have done that. And as I said, it’s something that, it’s really runs smoothly in the recordings, you know? We know them, we have cooperated together many times and I try to make their life very easy. Because we don’t have many hours to record. If we start to make mistakes and create chaos, this will cause a fortune to the band. We have to be perfect, not less than that.
If Septicflesh could open for any band either now or from the past, who would that be and why?
I’d say Death, probably. Morbid Angel, Celtic Frost, Death. Our main influences when we were youngsters. Especially Chuck, this guy had a great vision. He was a pioneer in his style, he changed music for me. Unfortunately we don’t have him alive now. If we had him, he would create always something that has a meaning. All his albums for me are a masterpiece.
Can you imagine if he lived, what he would be doing now?
For me, he’s like the composer of concert music. Like Mozart, but in his era. People that have changed the music with their talent.
Septicflesh has been around since the 90s. What do you think has kept you around since then? What has kept your music so vibrant?
Probably the second period. Septicflesh, for me, are two periods. The one from the 90s until the split and then we have the second period which is the most important. Since Communion and now with Titan, we are now in a very good label(s) that support our ideas and our vision. We tour many times. In the 90s, we didn’t tour. I had to go and study music. My brother had to study finance, we were not so active. But now we know we are more mature. We know which path to follow. If you managed to create good albums and to be on good strong packages, you will find your way. The second period established the band as it is now.
How close are you to the band Rotting Christ and have you ever toured with them?
I’m very good friends with Sakis. We have never toured.
We played once in Greece, that’s it.
What’s up next for Septic Flesh after this tour is over?
We will tour as much as we can to promote the new album. We have a festival in Europe, Summer Breeze. Then we have plans to return to the US, but I cannot say anything more. Maybe a tour in the beginning of 2015 in Europe, we shall see. We are now in talks with the agency and management to see what will be our next steps.
Do you have any messages for your fans that may be reading this right now?
I want to thank all our fans that have supported the band for so many years. I hope they will like the new album. I think we make an honest work that has a quality meaning.
Seth Siro Anton – Bass & Vocals
Christos Antoniou – Guitars & Orchestral
Sotiris Anunnaki V. – Guitars & Clean Vocals
Fotis Benardo – Drums & Percussion
(Interview by Ken Morton – Photos by Jack Lue)
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