Exclusive Interviews Only Found Here at MetalCore!
Firewind are a killer power metal band and I got in touch with Gus for this interesting chat:
MC: The old boring question ha ha. How did the band get
together? Did you know each other much before the band formed? Were any of you
in other bands?
GUS: Since this is an international line-up, on the first album we had 2 guys from the US that our label got me in touch with. The drummer was Brian Harris (x-My Own Victim, Kenziner) and the singer was Stephen Fredrick (x-Kenziner). I'|ve never met or played with any of those guys, but it worked out just fine on the album recordings. The bass player was my old friend, Konstantine from Greece.
On the new album however, things changed drastically. The band
got a new rhythm section and a stable line-up. The new drummer is Stian
Kristoffersen from Norway (Pagan'|s Mind, Jorn Lande) and the bass player
is Petros Christo (x-Breaking Silence). Stephen Fredrick once again handled the
vocals on the new album.
MC: How did the band end up signing with Leviathen records? Were there any other offers? How is the label treating you?
GUS: I was sending my demos to Leviathan since 1998. I didn't really consider searching for another label, as I always wanted to either work with David Chastain or Mike Varney. So, since my music attracted David, I kept on working with him until he offered me a contract for Firewind in 2001. The relationship with Leviathan is really good and friendly. They have done a lot of things for us and have tried to push the band as much as possible.
MC: How did the process for the recording of the new cd go? The writing and recording, did it go smoothly?
GUS: It took me about a year to compose the songs for the new CD. The recordings
took us about 3 months, as we recorded in 3 different studios. The guitars, bass and keys were done in Greece while the drums were done in Norway and the vocals in the US. Yeah, things went smooth. It's very easy to work with the guys, although we did this album from a distance. Everybody is very professional and did an awesome job!
MC: I think the cd is incredible. How have been most of the reviews?
GUS: Thank you. The reviews have been very very good on a worldwide level. We have scored high points in major press,as well as high soundcheck potitions. I'm very pleased with the reviews.
MC: How does the process of writing a song come about? Was their any song on the cd that was very hard or very easy to write?
GUS: Sometimes songs just flow and I can have them down in one hour, other times it might take me a few days to find maybe the perfect chorus or the best opening riff, it really depends on the inspiration and on how creative you feel at the moment you're composing something.
MC: How did you come up with the name and was any other names considered?
GUS: The name is Burning Earth, is a general concept we worked on. It has to do with the destruction, war, hunger and sickness on Earth in our days. This album could be considered as an alert message maybe.
MC: How do you and the label plan on going on about promoting this release?
GUS: We have really worked on the promotion of the album in Japan. I was there last September and did interviews for one week, as well as a special video clip shot that was used on the Japanese version of the album. We recently completed our first Japan tour this January and it went very well. We also did a video clip for the song I Am The Anger that has recently started getting played in some tv stations in Europe and we are also planning on doing some selected tour dates in Europe in countries like Sweden, France and Greece.
MC: Do you have a website? if so what is the url of it and what will people find when they get there?
GUS: Yes, people can check out our official website at: www.firewind.gr There you will find reviews, interviews and the latest official news of the band, as well as updated galleries, video and audio downloads, tour dates, etc.
MC: As a band do you have any set goals?
GUS: Of course we have many goals. But it is better to act first and then talk.
MC: Do you plan to try and do any mini tours at all? How is the cd being received overseas?
GUS: Like I mentioned above, we plan to do a few selected dates in May. We are
planning on a Swedish tour and some shows in France and Greece. I don't know much about what is going on in the US with Firewind. However, I|'ve seen many good reviews on line from American websites. As far as I know, the CD hasn't been reviewed in major publications, so I guess things are quite underground for us there still.
MC: What do you think makes your band stand out any differently than all the other bands out there?
GUS: I think our music has a special quality that is different from other bands in our genre. A lot of people tell us that although we don't play anything new, we really don't sound like any other band. I guess we have a good blend of elements in our music.
MC: Do you think you can ever make enough money off the band to not have to work?
GUS: I feel blessed to be able to make a living from my music. But don't forget that I am a member of 3 bands. At this point it wouldn't be possible to make a living only from Firewind, but I hope I will achieve that soon.
MC: If you could start your own label and sign 5 bands, which bands would they be and why.
GUS: I really can't think of any specific band right now, but I would sign bands that would contain great vocals and great songwriting. Also, bands that have a great attitude and of course their music would have to touch me in a way. Only then, I could believe in a band.
MC: What are some of the things that you hate and love about the music business?
GUS: I hate that there are no guarantees when there is situations where there is money involved. Nobody can guarantee you will sell this x amount of albums, for example. Or you can spend a shitload of money on a great video, and it just doesn't work. I guess that is life in general and not music business. I cannot say that I love anything specific about this business, I just try to do my job as good as I can.
MC: What are your plans for 2004?
GUS: The new Dream Evil and Mystic Prophecy releases and the recordings of the 3rd Firewind album with our brand new singer, Chity Somapala (x-Avalon). I'm very excited about working with Chity!!
MC: Any last words. Thanks for the interview.
GUS: Thanx for all ur support, I hope we play in ur country soon!!!!!!!!Stay Metal!