The Adventures of Phoebus The Knight
The Adventures of Phoebus The Knight
Phoebus The Knight is the creation of mastermind Axel de Montalembert, whose stunning vocals unveil a glorious sense of history and intrigue. By his side is Adrien Djouadou, whose stunning guitar tapestries and sweeping musical compositions set the imagination in flight. The latest heroic tales from the realm of Phoebus The Knight include The Cursed Lord and Ferrum Fero Ferro Feror – absolutely thrilling adventures that place the pedal to the metal in a grand and rapturous way. Highwire Daze recently delivered a royal missive to the wonderland of Phoebus The Knight to find out more about this vibrantly original project. Read on…
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Phoebus The Knight, and how long the band has been together.
Axel (Vocals,Writing): I am Axel the singer of the band and its writer. We wrote with Adrien Djouadou the album “Ferrum Fero Ferro Feror” in 2020. The other members of the group arrived little by little until the launch of crowdfunding in January 2021.
Adrien D. (Guitar, Composition): I am the composer of the band, I write all the music, produce the orchestrations and play the guitar.
Where is the band based out of and what is the local music scene like there?
Axel: The group is spread all over France, a country with great access to death and black metal.
Is there any overall story or concept behind the EP title The Cursed Lord?
Axel: Each album or EP of the band is a story. This story is that of the Knights of Heliopolis, an order of alchemist knights who have sworn to defend the dignity of the weakest and to uplift humanity physically, intellectually and spiritually. In “The Cursed Lord“, the knights of Heliopolis confront their former comrade in arms, Lord Gilles de Rais who has turned to black magic.
Select two songs from The Cursed Lord and what inspired the lyrics?
Axel: The lyrics come from the story I’m writing (novel to be published soon). Now there are references to several works that I admire scattered throughout the tracks. I invite you to discover where I refer to the Lord of the Rings in the EP.
Adrien D.: I would select « Surrounded by Darkness » as it is the big epic song of the EP with a lot of different vocal interventions and the Dies Irae by Mozart where the knights are fighting the demons summoned by Gilles de Rais. I would also select « The Tears of Rowena » because it is, to my knowledge, the only original metal opera aria in the style of XIXth century Bel canto ever done. Noémie Allet sings the character of Rowena, the elf godmother of Gilles de Rais mourning his death and regretting not being able to make him stay on the path of light.
Who produced The Cursed Lord and what was it like working with them?
Adrien D.: I produced the whole record. I did everything from recording to mixing and mastering.
Who did the cover art for The Cursed Lord and how much input did you have on it?
Adrien D.: I did the cover for the EP. A very knowledgeable friend submitted me the painting of « The two crowns » and I modified it to give a sense more accurate for our story. The light coming from the Christ going on the worried Knight shows his guilt. The knight is meant to be representing Gilles de Rais even if it’s not him on the original painting.
What is the story behind the title to your previous full-length album Ferrum Fero Ferro Feror?
Axel: The story of this EP takes place more than 300 years before Ferrum. This allows the listener to better understand the knights by seeing them in another context.
Adrien D.: Ferrum Fero Ferror Feror is the main narrative arc. It tells the fight between the Knights of Heliopolis and the big bad guy of the Phoebusverse : the Beast. The context is the French Revolution.
What could one expect from a live Phoebus The Knight show?
Adrien D.: Well, you can expect an epic story told with epic music, costumes, big energy, bombastic orchestrations, epic solos, acting work and an amazing moment with us. Our public is always so taken by our story, they all feel like knights by the end of the show!
If Phoebus The Knight could open for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
Axel: For Nightwish it goes without saying! They are the greatest symphonic metal band of all time, it would be an honor to play their first part.
What’s up next for Phoebus The Knight?
Axel: There will be a lot of news from this fall that I cannot reveal. But beyond that, our second album is on the right way.
Any final words of wisdom?
Axel: Our world is going through a very difficult period, in the face of the mediocrity, the wickedness and the stupidity that surround us there is still some remedy. Read a lot, keep a critical mind, feed on culture. Some think that only a great power can keep us from the forces of evil, personally I am convinced that it is through simple acts of kindness that we can keep darkness away.
Adrien D.: I couldn’t agree more with Axel, kindness, cultivating our own garden, giving proof of humanity and comprehension to others is key to taking our kind on a better path. Thank you so much for this great interview!
(Interview by Ken Morton)
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