Rock Meeting Nº 137 (English Version)

Page 1





etal is not just the sound of heavy guitars, but also heart-filling melodies. I talk about the experience of listening to Spiritbox songs, especially “Circle with Me”. It has everything: heaviness, melody, emotion, clean vocals mixed with guttural/ scream, and technique. What else do you need?

What other quality do they need to win the bangers' hearts? In my view, none. They are on a path that is bearing fruits. Even with the pandemic, without concerts, without showing what they are like on stage, they are being noticed and heard. Unlike the bands that found themselves lost in this pandemic period, Spi-

ritbox worked around the limitations imposed by the moment, and they pull a very interesting scene. It's not that band that has a female vocal only. There's a delight in hearing Courtney LaPlante's clean voice, there's amazement at how she screams, there are powerful riffs that make you shake your head, there's a musical engagement that hugs you in a way you can't stop listening to. Definitely, Spiritbox is a metal band that everyone can and should listen to. It's gentle, it's aggressive, it's charming and it knows how to involve you very well. But of course, only those who are open-minded will listen, those who don't look to the past and

just stay there, bragging about the deeds and condemning what they are doing in the present. When we talked to them for issue #133, we made our bet on this band long before their exponential growth. And now we see that we were right, and Spiritbox is going to climb a plateau faster than they were imagining. Write this down: they will be mainstream very soon. So, if you don't know this Canadian trio, it's still time to follow the growth of one of the new bands that Modern Metal is pleased to have. Spiritbox, yeah. The metal that everyone can and should hear!










GENERAL DIRECTOR Pei Fon EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Felipe da Matta DESIGN Thiago Silvestre Chama Publicidade

STAFF Augusto Hunter Bárbara Lopes Bárbara Martins Bruno Sessa Fernando Pires Kayomi Suzuki Marta Ayora Mauricio Melo Rafael Andrade UIllian Vargas CONTACT






llt comes from Sweden, and from there they bring a modern and refined sound to listeners. By releasing the EP Dark Waters, the band managed to transmit and connect with their audience through intense and immersive music. And with their super-produced music videos, they take us to another dimension. Even though it has only been a few months since their release, Allt is already surprising us by reaching famous playlists on streaming platforms and gathers positive reactions across the internet. Small details, heavier sounds, are just a part of what makes Allt. The band is Robin Malmgren (vocal), Olle Nodström (guitar), Viktor Florman (guitar), Samuel Mills (bass), Adam Björk (drum). In a conversation with Olle and Samuel, we found that Allt goes far beyond what we imagined. Allt is everything. First of all, we would like to thank you for having this interview with us. Allt only has one year since it was formed, but brings such power in the music. How Allt was born? Olle - We use to be called Karmanline. Long story short, we had some songs, some videos,

8 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

but was kinda stagnated, you know. We didn’t have any social media strategy, and we really didn’t know what to make of the band. Our drummer left and we had some plans for "Dark Waters", we were gonna do some performance videos, but without a drummer, you can’t record a performance video, you know? So we revaluated all our strategy and got into contact with EuroBlast

Records which helped us set translation. (laughs) up the release, and the branding for Allt. So we launched it Ah! So why you in September last year. decided on this name? Why everything? So Allt is really fresh. And Olle - So… we decided to it takes me to your descrip- change our name, but we tion, where you mention didn’t know what to use beAllt is everything. What sides Karmanline. Finding do you mean by that? the name of your band is the Olle - In Swedish, Allt trans- hardest thing. Cause you go lates to everything. thinking “oh do you want a Sam - Yes, is literally the sentence?” “Do you want a



10 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

name of the band or the word. Olle - Yes! (laughs) You hear the word and you go like “oh wait… nah, it is just the word…” “Dark Waters” is your first EP, just by looking at the number of views we can feel Allt is on the right track. How do you evaluate this first year as a band? Olle - I think... we had all the music finished basically in the summer of 2019. So the entire 2019 and 2020, was just planning. Got a social media schedule and follow it very strictly. So we had regular posts scheduled, all in order to develop our social media, our brand, our name, the image of the band. So all

2020 was just building the connections, like Robin who does the covers, Adam our drummer. We are so fortunate to have Adam. He is just such a great drummer, so was a building process. So you feel like all this time building and planning, help you reach these numbers, right? Olle - Yeah, first we didn’t know what to expect. We went without any expectations because you don’t want to end up disappointed. You invest all this money, all this time, so you want it to blow up. It kinda works in its own way. Of course, and you can see it really works just by seeing that Blind-


12 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

sight. It already surpasses 100k views on Spotify for example. Olle - Oh yes, it is really cool. Big thanks to Nik Nocturnal who put it on his playlist. And how is the feeling of being featured in these important playlists? Like recommendations and stuff. Olle - Playlist is obviously a big part of it. You have to stick out, you must have good visual content, the image, and of course the music. And Robin helps us massively to reach these influencers, getting Nik Nocturnal to hear it on a stream and ended up putting it on his playlist. So we build really good connections with so many people, and we are so happy and thankful for all the great people we have on our team. Sam - Is kinda overwhelming. At least, since we released all Dark Waters songs, the reaction has been great, and we work so hard on these songs, we heard them one year before we release them. We never lost our beliefs in our songs, but the reactions had been so overwhelming. I can imagine because people, not only react to the songs but also the visuals. The music videos themselves are so impactful. Olle - We really wanted it to be polished, you know? Where the music and the video kinda just click on their own. It becomes

this thing that you can just connect to it, and I think is so cool that people can actually connect to it. Me for example, the first video I watched was Rupture, which made me really connect to your music, the video itself is super cinematographic, so for Allt, how important is it to release music videos? Olle - For Rupture, for example, we wanted to keep the creepy, the claustrophobic vibe, so it is just what fits the song. Also, have the sound design, is a big part of what makes the track be what it is. Small details like the clock noise, the ambiance sound, are so important as well. So we like to set up a theme, hold on to it and see what we can do with it. “We survive these days without meaning, to someday achieve, to someday be free”. What do you mean by these words for "Blindsight"? Olle - We would have to have Robin here to really get inside the lyrics, but the point of Blindsight. When we wrote, I and Robin were stuck in a very pessimistic mindset, it felt like life just passed by. You wake up, go to work, eat, sleep, wake up again and keep repeating. At some point, you feel like you are in a hamster wheel. You are working for someone else interest, you making money for someone


else. So we both were stuck in this thinking: “So it is how this gonna be. How this gonna end…” I think it comes from that and tries to break free from that stuck feeling. So now for example you feel freer? Olle - Yes, create music and being able to share it with everyone. It’s so important for us. It is so good that people connect to it. When we see comments saying “Oh I can relate to that!” or “It resonates with me!” it makes it all worth it. All the work, the effort, all the days we spent from nine to five working so we can afford it. So this is Blindsight, when you are stuck in a really pessimistic mindset, the world can easily become dark and hard to live in it. You just released “Dark Waters”, but there are any new tracks on the way? Olle - Most likely until the end of this year. There are no dates set yet,

14 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

but we are always working on music because that is what we do. We love getting wrapped in the process, immerse ourselves in writing, in creating these songs and themes, really getting into it. So that is what we are actually doing right now, we are writing for our second release. So probably one single this year. Some artists had released their albums in an instrumental version, what made you release "Dark Waters" in this format? Olle - Me personally, I am into post-rock for example. So is very rare you have lyrics in post-rock, so since there are so many sounds that get hidden behind the vocals, you can’t see what really makes the song. When you remove the vocals, you can listen to all the structure inside a track. I know we have people who think like that in our fanbase, so that is why we think is important for us to release just the instrumentals. Not feeling like listening to the vocals? Ok, play the instrumental. Sam - For us never was a question if we will release the instrumentals. We always wanted to release it, was just a question of when and how. I think all of us appreciated it when our favorite band drops an EP or album full of instrumentals, so it just opens up the music in a different way, a different perspective. Olle - You can take for example the Dali


Thundering Concept, they released Savages, and later they drop the instrumentals, so for me, it becomes even better. I could really hear the sounds, hear how was the production of the song. With the songs and music videos, you also released three playthroughs, and with that, you keep feeding your fanbase. With concerts paralyzed because of the pandemic, this is an important action, how this impact Allt? Olle - We get so many messages from people asking for the tabs, stamps, so since this interest exists, it was really important to provide this content. So if you really want to reproduce the song, go check the riffs, the tune, the song structure and it is all for free. You get the playthrough for free, the stamps, the tabs, so we really wanted to make it as avail-

16 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

able as we can, open-source so to speak. For me is interesting to know you giving everything. Normally bands don’t do this open-source that much. So you giving your fanbase what they requested, is so important and it actually helps the band, right? Olle - Yes, it does. We have this connection with our fans, listening to what they want and providing it. By this point, is part of our identity. One thing that fascinates modern metal listeners is to know how the songs are played. So recently you released The Ruputure ‘Stem Pack’”, why release something so specific? Olle - "Rupture" was also featured in the Nail the mix, so there are multi-tracks for it too and even a session where he shows how we mixed Rupture. So there are no secrets. We are open about our process of writing, song structure. We feel confident in our music, so we are not afraid of people matching tunes or whatever. If it helps, that is good. It’s insane to see how you really have no fear of being so open. When you release something so raw like stems, you are completely


18 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

exposed to anything. So you really have no fear at all? Olle - No, because of the way we write we already dissected the music so many times. We get a couple of parts, dissect them, cut them, change the order. For some people, it is really interesting to hear it. Music is a powerful tool to transmit ideas and feelings. How hard is to organize your thoughts and transform them into music? Olle - Sam, please you have the outsider perspective here. (laughs) Sam - I’m not included in the songwriting at all. Mostly is Olle and Victor who does the writing, there is no routine behind it. There are periods when they get creative, so they sit down and write down the music, record it. We send it back and forward, in the group chat, we discuss what to do. It is a really interesting take on everything, Olle said before he really into the Post-rock ambiance, so he goes to that direction of the song and Victor goes more to the riffs, the heavy parts, and that mix together is

what makes the music. For example, you mentioned that both of you were in a dark place, feeling stuck, so this is one of the moments that you come with new ideas and write? Olle - Yes, it could be one of the moments. Some of the music comes from longing, just wanting to explore other ideas, themes. Normally it starts with Victor sending me the riffs, and I sit and think how can I arrange it, what can I do with it, maybe write a chorus to it, an ambiance to it and send it to him. Odium, for example, that song started with a riff, and it stays like that for about three years, and suddenly in an afternoon, it was just done. Something just clicked inside your head? Olle - I was just watching Into The Spider-verse, and I was super inspired by that. So I was walking home and I could hear the chorus playing inside my head, and suddenly just “oh shit!” and when I got home I just finished the track. But for example, Blindsight and Covenant was a completely different process. We change it so many times,


Blindsight for example just clicked when Victor sent me the breakdown. This makes me think about your description on Spotify, you transform scenes into music. Is exactly that, right? How is it? Olle - I don’t know, I have this thing that I get wrapped in the aesthetic. If something is aesthetically pleasing to me, I can start to come up with sounds in my head. “What might be my take on this?”, “How it makes me feel?”.Sam - Is hard to explain, is not uncommon that when we hagging out and then Olle or

20 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Victor comes with a sound and we just think “Oh this reminds us of when we were hiking the other day!” and from that we create things. And last but not least, what we can expect from Allt? Any plans for doing live streams? Olle - You don’t want to talk in an empty room, but we want to have this direct interaction with the fans. Sam - Is not set in stone, but we having some ideas and plans for it. Olle - An for next release, hopefully, we can make you feel closer to the band. To show what and who we are.




usic is a very efficient mean to propagate information and, as it is increasingly studied, musicians are never satisfied with their knowledge, always looking for more. And we, as listeners, are the ones who win with this. In this musical journey, Rock Meeting met the Mexican group Afterglow, a new quartet, with expressive numbers and which is only growing. Although they were born in 2016, it was in 2020 that they started to stand out in the music scene. Formed by Albano Arce (vocals), Aruh Harrison (drums), Erik Azpíroz (guitar) and Mariano Fuentes (bass), Afterglow arrives to embody the Mexican scene and emerge as one of the relevant names in South American Modern Metal. About performance, music, past, present and future, we talked with the friendly Albano and Erik. They split on the answers, but they sound in unison, it's the band's mindset that you'll read from now on.

Foto: Promotion

Coming from Mexico, you were born during the pandemic. Where did the idea of setting up a band at this difficult time for the music world

22 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

come from? Erik - We started this project way back in 2016, released our first song in 2019 but we didn’t start gaining a significant number of listeners until April 2020, in the middle of the pandemic. We believe the fact that the entire music industry was facing extreme challenges during the first months of the pandemic leve-

planned, or it took you by surprise? Erik - We’ve always had our intentions clear, we did not, however, expect the quick growth we’ve experienced during 2020. It’s been an Afterglow was born with amazing experience and we’re very clear intentions and really grateful for the recepthis reflection is clearly tion and support. seen in the numbers. Is everything going as you There are many bands led the playing field for smaller acts, as many of the bigger bands put a halt in their release and tour schedule, which freed up attention for lesser-known bands.



24 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

that are not in the main Spotify playlists, and you have already entered these lists. What do you think is the reason for this expressive result in such a short time? Albano - We are just as surprised as you are! We tried many times before we ever got into our first editorial playlist. I believe what made the difference is that we followed their guidelines to the letter. However, there’s a luck component that we can’t dismiss, as we were lucky enough to be liked by their curator team. The way the Mexican scene has shown itself in recent years is surprising. But speaking specifically to those who live on the scene, what is the music scene like, especially for modern metal? Albano - We are really fortunate for the amazing talent we have in this country. However the scene is in a bad situation right now because of the restrictions implemented during the pandemic. Lots of venues have closed, so metal shows are limited to underground on-line shows, as metal has very little relevance on mainstream media here. Afterglow already has two EPs released and some singles, and this year there are already two new songs. Does this indicate that your third EP is coming or are you


working for the debut album? Erik - We are working on a set of songs to be gradually released as singles, but all of them are part of an EP. We aren’t planning to suddenly release multiple songs at once any time soon. Speaking of new singles, “Lost” was the first of 2021. Powerful music, it has a heaviness and a strong message. How do you evaluate the receptivity of this song? Erik - Lost was the first song to not be playlisted on release, so the numbers

26 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

don’t reflect the way we feel about the song. It just reminds us that we can’t have it all the time and we must keep working on our music and our release strategies. However, our release on youtube via Dreambound was better than our previous one, so we are optimistic more people will discover the song organically and be able to enjoy those riffs. "Of an amnesiac humanity, I wonder what will remain". I highlight this passage in “Lost”. Making a

parallel with the human attitudes of today, who will be the human being tomorrow in the post pandemic, will we learn anything? Albano - EHopefully the post pandemic human will learn not to let his freedom be taken away by the power of mass media manipulation. “Lost” speaks about us humans repeating our past because of our collective amnesia. History gets lost and rewritten by the victors, while we get to repeat our mistakes over and over again. The amount of censorship (from mass media and social networks as well as

peer pressure) in recent years is contributing to our amnesia, as information gets suppressed and distorted, rendering it useless for retrospective historical investigations. I was introduced to Afterglow listening to “Burning”. This song was made to be echoing in the mind, it is a very sure formula, you listen to the music and suddenly you are singing. Tell us about the song writing process. Erik - Initially we wanted to write a


28 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

bouncy riff to base our song around, then we kept adding parts until we had a song structure. Once we had that we refined the structure, moved parts around until it had a nice flow. The lyrics and vocal melodies were just a natural response to what we had in our minds. The lyrics speak about the divide between different collectives, as at the time of writing, it was getting too extreme, while our governments had absolutely abysmal responses to the pandemic crisis, so the whole world felt like it was burning with us inside. "Now it's time to take back our lives, to claim what's left out of ourselves". This part of "Burning" is powerful. Pulling into today's world, what can we recover and what should we put aside? Erik - We should recover our freedom of speech, our freedom of travel, our freedom of gathering and our critical thinking. We could totally do away with ideological, religious and racial tensions, as they contribute absolutely nothing to our society, except for dividing us even more and making us much easier to manipulate and control.


The song “Black Hole” has a melody that is fixed on the head. It is so true that it has been heard almost 800 thousand times. Did you imagine such an impact? Erik - It is truly mind blowing, as those numbers aren’t easy to grasp. We wanted to make a song that had a powerful message for those who suffer from depression, so it feels like we are on our way to accomplish our mission

30 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

so far and that makes us very happy. "The only promise you can't break is the one made for you, Don't turn your back on yourself", this part of "Black Hole" is very impactful. How to help someone not to succumb to himself? Albano - It is very important to maintain meaningful relationships with your close ones, so you can rely on them whenever

you feel you’re on the edge. We believe empathy is the number one tool to help the ones in need, as you can understand what they’re going through and give them an outside perspective which may be helpful to get over their troubles. "Ephemeral" is another song that listeners can’t get enough of. With just over 700 thousand plays, this

song is a beautiful synthesis of what the band wants to show. Melody, technique, and lyrics with feeling, is this Afterglow? Albano - Totally! We want to make songs you can groove to but also leave you thinking in the end. Our goal is to make you feel part of our family. In the description of the band it says that Afterglow exists to animate,


connect and relieve the feeling of being alone on this journey. Many bands have talked about existentialism, what is it like to discuss this theme through music? Albano - Naturally, music is our preferred method of expression, and we love having long conversations where we dive deep into philosophy over a few glasses of whiskey, so we always have some existential topic in mind, ready to be projected onto our next lyrics.

32 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

To close our conversation, you released playthroughs for some songs, do you intend to do with the songs released this year? Much success and take care. Thank you! Erik - Yes! We are currently working on some new video content. We’ll let everyone know about it on our social media pages as soon as we have some

thing to announce! We



support and wish you the best!





EXCORE is a band from Japan that has gone through several changes but has always gained attention from overseas listeners for its sound quality, and obviously how heavy it can turn. Don't be fooled how the members look, the band goes way beyond the visuals, and it sure shocked many listeners with the famous DRAGOUT. With kagami on vocals, yumeto on guitar, reizi on drums and kai on bass, DEXCORE is able to take you on a roller coaster of emotions in a single song. The band brings a certain innovation by breaking their music into moments, and in different ways, and their latest work Red Eyes managed to make the sound even heavier. DEXCORE is one of the many in Japan who use visual-kei to express themselves visually, but the sound is simply metalcore and because of the appearance many pass up the chance to meet a band with a powerful, insane, and unique sound. First of all, thank you very much for having this interview with us. DEXCORE has already undergone several changes in its formation, but the band never stopped its activities. Last year,

34 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

it was also announced that your drummer and bassist left the band. Did it affect the activities of DEXCORE in any way? kagami - No, it hasn’t. Although I cannot say it hasn’t affected us at all, we just keep moving on. kai is your new bassist, and from the song “Red Eye” it's obvious that he seems to fit in very well

with DEXCORE. kai, was it difficult for you to adapt with the current members? And for the band, has anything changed since kai joined? kai - As a new member, I was indeed a bit nervous at first, but with time I felt a sense of security and comfort, like being part of a family. As for the songs, it was tough to familiarize myself with them because they are quite unique

and there are so many, but it was not difficult to get in sync with the members. reize - If anything, the change from to-ru, who played with a pic, to kai playing with his fingers has changed the quality of our approach considerably. yumeto - kai and I are exceptionally compatible as the string-combo of our band. When it comes to movements and how we present ourselves, we are very like-mind-


ed and are able to work well together. So, I think that we're adjusting more and more with our band’s style and the way we play. Still on “Red Eye”, many comments point to the fact that you managed to make your sound even heavier. At the time of creation, did you have any limiting factors or were you freer? yumeto - We wrote “Red Eye” around January this year. At the demo stage we really wanted the form and the melody of the song to be exactly this way. We also wanted the song to be about the pain of the innate hatred towards parts of yourself. How can I explain this, for example, like the darkness of the night can never know the light of the day, right? That's because the night was born in the night, and I was born in myself, so I can't experience another person's life. However, even if I wish to become somebody else, in their life there is pain as well, so I real-

36 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021


ized that this world is full of suffering people… I got tired of thinking about it, so I wanted to express my hatred for all that. I imagined the sound as black metal of 2021, so the structure became much more difficult, and the sequences became much more elaborate. kagami - In this day and age, you sometimes see influential engineers dictate what’s the “right” sound, and if that influential person says that “this is the only way it can be”, then the listener will assume that that is “right”. I think it’s a shame that a self-made sound, such as ours, isn’t being perceived as “unique”, and instead just labeled as “sounding bad”. I don’t know if there’s a limit to creating, but there’s no “right” way, “the sound that we think is crazy is the DEXCORE sound’’. If there was a “right” sound, I think the “right” sound for DEXCORE would be us. I am not sure whether I answered the question, but I wanted to say this anyway (laughs). In 2020 you brought “Breath”, which is much calmer compared to other songs and the lyrics sound like an outburst, doesn't


it? And it fits a lot with the difficult time that a lot of bands are going through these days. How was DEXCORE affected by the entire pandemic? kagami - As far as I'm concerned, people who keep saying that they want to die are too scared to do it when they come close to it. People who really want to die just do it, without anyone noticing. I don’t suffer from mental health problems, but I myself have thought about dying many times when nothing was going right. But of course, I can't die, being too scared. During those times I thought, "even if I don't want to, one day I'll die and everything will be over, so I'll just try to hang on’’. I wrote about those feelings. I'll be happy if people listen to this song and think "Let’s keep living some more". yumeto - The song has separation as its theme. I was taking a walk when I suddenly thought of a piano melody and wrote it down immediately after returning home. I was so moved when I saw the kagami’s lyrics added to it. This song came about precisely because I was spending every day depressed from not being able to perform, so it's possible that we wouldn't have been able to

38 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

complete this song if we had done any gigs during this period. This is also a consequence of the pandemic, so I can say that it wasn’t necessarily only a bad thing for us. I do hate this pandemic with all my heart though. reizi - But it hasn't necessarily only had a negative impact. It was an opportunity for society as a whole to think about what impact live music has had on society and where the need for live music lies, but also to understand that we can't just wait for the pandemic to be contained. In particular, Japan has been notably slower to respond and recover than other industrialized countries, and I personally believe that this correlates with the course of pandemic, so we need to establish guidelines for our activities to ensure that this aspect does not work against us. kai - This song was released before I joined the band, but when I heard it, I felt a message of strength in living, of connecting the present self to tomorrow. It is about wanting to turn away from the things you don't like, wanting to disappear, but also being afraid of disappearing, so you end up lying to yourself over and


over again, day after day, playing the character you call yourself. However, as long as you’re able to smile, that’s enough for you to live. I’m sure everybody has experienced this more or less at some point in their life, and this song is a message to those who feel this way. The world is affected by the new coronavirus, and we are not able to perform as much as we would like. Especially now that we are not able to perform, how can we still convey the beauty of live performances? And how can we communicate and convey the music of DEXCORE? As long as we don't stop thinking about the answers to these questions, we will continue to make great strides, just as DEXCORE has done in the past. The power and vocal control of kagami, constantly changing the tone at different parts, is another factor that always astonishes us in your music. It must be hard to reach that level, right? Was there anything in particular that influenced you? kagami - It's not easy. I haven't said much about it before, but of course I've worked

40 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

very hard. If you listen to our old songs and compare them, it's very obvious and I think you’ll notice it immediately. There is no particular influence. It’s something that I do because I want to express myself. DEXCORE released “Cibus” in collaboration with Ryo from Crystal Lake, who is well known in the metalcore scene. Where did the idea for this collaboration come from? Was it difficult to work with another musician? kagami - We were in the middle of album production when we finished the song, and we enjoyed working on it so much, we thought we could do something that would surprise everyone. The first person who came to my mind was Ryo, the vocalist who is my biggest influence in screamo. We've known each other for a while, but I really didn't expect him to agree when I asked him, thinking I have nothing to lose. I was shaking. It was the first time for us to work together, but Ryo was very supportive, and it went very smoothly. Thanks to him we were able to perfect an insane song, and I’m very grateful for it. You are well known online, including abroad, for the innovation in your music, especially the “breakdowns”. My favorite is “NEW ERA”, it's just


brutal! Where do these ideas come from? kagami - While we were making this song it just evolved into what it is before we even realized (laughs). As I mentioned earlier, DEXCORE is very popular overseas, and there are always many comments in several languages for your music videos. Do you have any idea why DEXCORE is so popular outside of Japan? kagami - I don’t know. On the contrary, I’d like you to tell me (laughs). kai - Visual-kei is not a music genre, but a part of Japanese music culture. By further adding metal elements to it, it brings out each individuality to the fullest, so I think there is something fascinating about it that makes you drawn to it. yumeto - I'm sure the people who like listening to our music can feel our spirit of taking on the world. Our ambition is to go global, that’s why we want them to spread the word. We've been getting

42 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

comments in many different languages, so I'll try to learn as many as I can so I can respond to them. We know that the visual-kei and metalcore scene in Japan is not that big compared to other genres and that society judges a lot of these more aggressive styles. Do you think having this visual element of visual-kei together with metalcore is an additional obstacle that DEXCORE has to overcome in order to grow? kagami - As we are moving forward,

it isn’t. We're proud of what we do. reizi - I discovered visual-kei when I was 14 years old, and I was fascinated by the unique looks, the staging and its worldview, which is unlike any other genres, and that's why I'm doing visual-kei now. In Japan there are still very few opportunities for visual-kei to have a big impact on Japanese society, but in Brazil that culture is seen positively, therefore I'm excited to see what will happen when we perform there, so if I have the chance I want to go. In Brazil there is a large group of fans of metalcore and visualkei, do you think we will have any chance of seeing DEXCORE on Brazilian stages? kagami - It is a given! kai - We are in Japan, and Brazil is exactly on the other side of the


world, which means it is the farthest country from us. In the meantime, we will continue to send out new songs, so that people can fall in love with our music despite the distance. reizi - We want to perform live surrounded by people from Brazil who love visualkei. Please give us a warm welcome when we go there one day. yumeto - Thank you so much!!;) I am looking forward to meeting all of you in Brazil someday. kagami - At the moment we're still even too cautious to travel around in Japan, 44 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

so we're not in a position to go abroad yet, but once the situation settles, we'll be travelling all over the world, so please look forward to it. Of course, we're going to destroy Brazil too. Thank you very much! DEXCORE released the music video for “Red Eye” on April 30th, but what comes next for DEXCORE? DEXCORE - From May 22nd “Red Eye” has been released for streaming and download, so please listen to it a lot. We also can't wait to share with you our new songs, so please look forward to them as well!




Foto: Jacob McAllister

hat the UK is a nest of bands, whatever the style, that we all already know, but this search for new bands that Rock Meeting has been doing is full of surprises. For this edition, we present the quintet of technical Deathcore Monasteries. The group exists since 2013 and since then it has released three EPs and a range of heavy singles. The band consists of Josh Davies (lead singer), Dan Hill (drums), Aaron Wright (guitar), Sam Mitchell (bass) and Ben Standley (guitar). Monasteries recently presented their newest work, the EP “Silence”. Massively heard by this one who writes you, it is a record that must be heard by the fan of heavy music. It is a very technical, aggressive album that knows how to mix Metal influences very well. In other words, you need to listen to the Monasteries EP “Silence” now and it is available on digital platforms. And to talk about this new EP, we talked to vocalist Josh Davies. A very nice dude, he talks about the new songs and the band. Read more! Monasteries is a new band, but with well-defined purposes. Tell us about the beginning your work.

46 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Foto: Ollie Wood

Josh - Monasteries are a fivepiece technical Deathcore band from the UK that was formed together by founding member Dan Hill (Drummer) over the coming year’s we’ve faced countless lineup changes but now we’re confident that this is our strongest line up to date, we’ve come together collectively with the same intention to write ridiculous

heavy music. The name of the band was inspired by one of the characters in Warcraft. What is the common point that united the game to the music? DDan (drummer) used to play World of Warcraft religiously for years and always thought the name in the lore were cool

which I don’t blame him for! There’s one dungeon called Scarlet Monasteries so he took it from that but you can see some of the influence in some old song titles from The Empty Black EP. The band calls itself Tech-Deathcore. It is clear how technical you are and how much you



48 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

develop the music. Was this refined sound something intentional from the beginning of the band, or were you discovering it as ideas came? I would say so yeah like I can assume when the band started Dan had the intention to start something stupidly heavy in which he accomplished and ever since I came into the picture to annoy them it’s all we’ve ever wanted and I feel like we’re achieving that and making our mark in the music scene. Monasteries has already released two EP's and a few singles. Do you intend to continue in this dynamic or do you intend to release a debut album? We’ are always writing no matter what and whether that’s collectively or in our own spare time but that is all I’m going to leave


it at until the time is right to speak upon our next move.

Gassed Up and Freehowling, but ay maybe in the future we might do one.

Since 2021, Monasteries has released a single every month. Is there a possibility of a livestream for the band? We’ve thought and spoke about it but with live shows hopefully coming back in July we don’t really see a point so we are going to smash out a ton of practices for our August tour with our friends in

“The Amygdala Chorus” was launched in 2020 after two years without news. The reception was so great that it has been heard more than 170 thousand times on Spotify. Did this boom take you by surprise, or did you expect it? Oh yeah absolutely! We decided to release a standalone track to keep the

50 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

momentum going because Monasteries will not be slowing down anytime soon at all so when we released that song it just took off and we were speechless and even now it’s still going bits, we also had a load of covers that were coming in which was cool. The lyrics for “The Amygdala Chorus” are quite intense. One of the parts that strikes me most is “I was meant for, Meant for something, Something more”. What would that be something more that would mean in life? For me personally it’s just finding my own meaning and purpose in life because I still have those days where I wake up questioning why am I here and I’m pretty sure a load of other people do, and it’s something I’m always thinking about because you don’t know your main purpose in this crazy world. In times of pandemic, the use of social networks became much more evident, but many downsides come with it, and “Digital Suicide” speaks of this destructive relationship.


What can we do to reduce this damage in our real life? Being open minded, because everything you see on social media may not be what it seems, and in today modern world social media can be very toxic and life threatening. It would be advisable to analyze whatever the topic may be before diving head into it with judgement or a comment. “Seeking validation fueled by mass intoxication, they abused their platforms hiding their toxic traits putting lives at stake”. This is cer-

52 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

tainly the part of “Digital Suicide” that draws the most attention. What inspired you to write that message? This is what I see day in and day out where people think just because they have a bunch of followers they can look down on individuals or make strong comments about them without having a back leg to stand on, and words stick as well so spewing spite for the attention will only take a turn for the worst. “Allowing my Traitors to Die” is intense, melodic and captures the listener with each riff played. It brings many sound references that I particularly like to hear. Tell us a little bit about the process of creating this song. This song was half written through lockdown and the other half when


we were together but with this song, we wanted to experiment a bit more by adding a melodic section into the song, especially vocally with how I wanted to bring some cleans to the table and go a different approach with it all but we knew when we got the masters back for this track that it was going to be the first one we release. “You acted out on me. You showed me no fucking sympathy”. I admit that I was intrigued to know who this traitor is, ref-

54 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

erenced in the song. Is there a character behind "Allowing My Traitors to Die"? I wouldn’t really say there is a character behind the song as the lyrical theme itself just speaks upon the in-denial side of any form of a relationship and how it can be toxic because either of you could be turning a blind eye to your own toxic traits whether you show them intentionally or not. You released "One Minute to Midnight", another new single

for the most demanding ears. How has the reception of this song been? “One Minute to Midnight” has been received so well and we can’t thank people enough for checking it out! When writing this we clearly wanted to take people chins off and I’m pretty sure we did with it haha For the music world, the pandemic directly impacted what makes sense in having a band: live concerts. What can change in the post-pandemic, both in the


behavior of the public and in the actions to promote events? Keep supporting one another by sharing music, buying merch and even attending shows more regularly when they do come back like even sharing the event/ tour help even if you can’t attend. To conclude, what can we expect from you in 2021? We wait for

56 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

you in Brazil. Success, take care. Thank you! We will be touring with Gassed Up and Freehowling from August 28th to September 5th and then we have Europe with Gassed Up from the 13th to the 17th so fingers crossed that these will go ahead and that we can spend the rest of 2021 just smashing out shows and promoting our newest EP ‘Silence’.




ith 24 years on the road, Caliban is sick of genres or being pigeonholed. Caliban's music is much more than that and with the Zeitgeister album, the band received a visit from the ghost of the past and ended up giving a new identity to their old songs. Coming from Germany, Andreas Dörner (vocals), Denis Schmidt (guitar), Marc Görtz (guitar), Marco Schaller (bass), and Patrick Grün (drums), bring deep life questioning and social criticism to their albums. In a conversation with Marc Görtz we had the chance to delve deeply into how, and why, Caliban manages to blend the future with the present, and how they keep their music at such a high level over all these years.

Photo: Tilografie

58 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

First of all, thank you so much for having this interview with us. Caliban has a long journey as a band, is 24 years on the road. Is difficult to see bands continue active for such a long time, especially with music so solid and updated. What is Caliban’s secret? Marc - I think one of the reasons, is even if we are a group of friends, we still not

Photo: MCPixx

a group of best friends who hang out together every day. We all have different hobbies, different circles of friends and for example, Andy, the vocalist, lives over four hours away from here. That doesn’t mean we are not friends, but we have different lives besides the band. We don’t annoy each other too much. Marco, the bassist, leave in my town, but still, we don’t hang out

every day. After so long if you hang out with the same people for over 20 years, I think that will be rough. And how was the evolution over all these years? I, as the main songwriter, instrumental-wise, not lyric-wise. I always like to progress, learn new technics, try to develop my songwriting skills, and add new layers of other

music styles to what we do. This for me is very important, and the reason why we kept doing what we are doing. I think if we keep recording the same thing, the same type of album, over and over again I will be bored. This way I keep myself motivated, I always find new interesting things to add to our music and bring it together to traditional Caliban style.



Photo: Der Pakt 60 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Your new album is called Zeitgeister, which can be translated to “ghost from the past”. In this EP, you visit your past to bring these messages to the present. Why revisit these songs? Was very interesting. We delayed our ‘normal’ album, which is ready, but we postponed it to next year. So our international fans don’t have to worry, our upcoming full album will be in English. It will not be German all over. (laughs) Zeitgeister supposed to be special, which is still special but supposed to come after the ‘normal’

album, but because of the pandemic we can’t tour, so we delay the album. For me was important that we just didn’t re-record the old songs. There were different ideas on how to approach this, someone suggested we do a live jam session and just play the old songs, and I was like nah. What is the point of recording the same song fifteen-year again? Because of modern technology, it will sound different somehow, but maybe it loses its charisma. Of course, the German lyrics will be different, but not different enough for me. So was interesting to take something from the old songs, melodies, don’t know, some kinda vibe, and bring them to the new world. Was interesting to listen to this old song, there are songs I never heard in more than 10 years. As a musician, you always grow in different ways, there albums from us that I don’t like anymore. I like it, of course, when I recorded it, but right now I don’t like it anymore, maybe because is different music. But was interesting to hear how we approach songwriting


62 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

ra p Ph ot og iza or Sa s ot o: Ph

So wasn’t simply to get the old songs and remake them, right? I imagine it wasn’t an easy thing to do. No, because it was a very long process to find the recipe to develop the songs to what they are now. Some of them, while writing, was too close to the original or too far away from the original. Took some time to actually find the spot to say “hmm, you still feel the old song, but is not the old song.”, was so hard. Also, for the lyrics, in the beginning, we tried to translate them, but we found out that it doesn’t work. The patterns are completely different, some words in English we don’t use in German, or they sound very cheesy. So we decided to keep the topic and write new lyrics with the same topic, just match them to the new version of the


at that time. Was even harder, and took longer, to write down this EP than the full album.

Photo: Sasoriza Photography

song. Took some time to decide how we will do it. Must have been difficult to turn the lyrics in German, but there was something you got from this time travel? Was fun in the end. Also digging in the old catalog had a little impact on the upcoming album. In the middle writing process of the normal album, we decided to delay it and work on Zeitgeister, to finish it first, and after we work on the album. After the writing process of the EP, we went back to the new album and we add some kinda vibe from the old songs. Of course, it still sounds like Elements or Gravity, but with a very big touch from the old school Caliban. Let’s say a heavier and rough version of Gravity or Elements, somehow, with a couple of old-school hardcore riffs mixed with modern style. Not as much as the EP, but somehow in this way. The album feels like a good return to ‘home’. It almost fits the current situation where we had to stop our activities and stay at


home. Zeitgeister reflect this actual moment we are living? Somehow it is different, actually for us, the recording and writing process was the same. We live far from each other, so we record and send by email or talk on skype, and just the recording was a little bit different. Normally I am always there when we record the vocals, but this time I had to be there online. The instrumental parts I record and mix everything in my studio, like the EP, Elements or Gravity, was made in my studio. Just the vocals we go somewhere else and have a vocal producer, and I go there as well because I have a clear idea of how things must be. So this time I couldn’t be there and it took a bit longer, but besides that, the pandemic just made us, or me, more creative. Well, I was more at home and recording than usual. For Andy was a bit more of an impact since he is somehow sensitive to his surroundings. Some of the songs had this topic of the current situations, but of course not all songs, since we bring some social criticism as well. So I think the personal side of the upcoming album had an effect on him.

64 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

It takes me to your new song, nICHts, which brings a heavy theme to the surface, suicide. In the actual moment, many people can relate to this feeling in the song, including me. In which way you connect to this topic? Where the feeling for nICHts came from? That is hard to say because this is more related to Andy. But I know many people can identify with the lyrics, the music as well. For some reason, for us maybe more than other bands, but our fans are regularly messaging us on social media things like “Oh I hear this song, and I really relate to that, it helped me feel better.” So he really tries to have a positive perspective in his lyrics, even though the video perfectly transfers it in nITCHS, but it means to be kinda a help. Andy also tries not to keep it always on the dark side, because he knows his responsibility and many people get influenced by this. In the past he had an experience of one fan writing him from a psychiatric hospital, he really tried to help, and latest he notices how impactful the music can be to people, so he is very careful about it.

Photo: AnshixArts - Angela Michel


So these feelings are more related to Andreas, right? How the rest of Caliban feels about it? When are these personal things, we go through them and tell him when it is too much. Because it can be misunderstood, so he re-write certain parts. But for us as a band, we discuss things as a group, and that is why we have these critics to society, or animal abuse, this is something we as a band we want to do. So is kinda a balance, is not like only personal lyrics, we also have criticism and it is a good mix of both.

66 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Listen to the songs in German give the feeling that the message is more straightforward. nICHts is a great example. It was your intention to make it this way or it just happened naturally? I think it just happened naturally. I think the language makes it more straightforward, also the way it sounds. I think it is somehow a natural process. Not only in Brazil, but in many countries, Caliban is an inspiration for new artists. When you start

Caliban, you ever thought you will become a musical reference for so many people? We never thought that, but is such an honor when some people say “I love your music, the way you play, so I made my parents buy me a guitar.” Not only people starting a band, but just the fact people also start getting creative, get inspired, and get an instrument. This is more than enough of what I can expect. I never thought that will happen, but it makes me really happy that people see it this way. Of course, I also had my reasons why I picked up a

guitar, so for me is cool I inspired people to make music as well. But I would never have guessed (laughs). Europe is famous for having so many metal, metalcore and hardcore artists. What makes Caliban different? That is hard to say, maybe it’s because we are around for so long and developed our own style. But it is really hard to say, I think it is up to other people to define why. You really don’t know why Caliban just got popular?


I mean, we had been touring consistently. Nowadays I see a lot of bands getting really lazy. Like in the past when we started the band, we played literally everywhere. I remember people saying “Hey I have this gig in Spain, I pay you 100 euros, is that ok?” And we just said yes. We were so into playing and getting our music out, that we just literally played everywhere. Sometimes the money was not even enough to cover the gas bill, so we sold some merch to fill up the gas to travel to one concert and back, even invest our own money. A couple of promoters’ friends said, “I remember the old days when I called you guys and I offer 50 euros and a couple of pizzas, and you guys just say hell yeah! and now offer some bands, who are not even known as far as you were in the time, to play as a local act they just refuse or ask 1000 euros.”

68 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Photo: AnshixArts - Angela Michel

Well, I will play for a couple of pizzas (laughs) Yes! A lot of these young bands have really crazy ideas on how to get their names around. Of course, is not all of them. Sometimes there are bands who ask for a guarantee of 1000 euros and, in the end, somehow, they don’t bring any people

to the concert, that is not cool. I don’t mean support bands shouldn’t get paid, but if there is a local band they should get enough guest money, food, be treated respectfully. I, for example, hate this pay-to-play thing. Some of these bands are just not realistic, they are lazy, they want to play big shows for big money and stuff like that, but they don’t realize takes work to be known.


You think is because of these new streaming services? I mean years ago, streaming services were only an idea, was hard to make your music reach other countries. and Caliban experience this transition from physical CD to digital music. How was it adapt to this digitalization of music? I really don’t know to be honest, but wasn’t really nice to see this transition. As you know many of these services like Spotify and others are a shit pay. You cannot make a living out of that. But on the other hand, is easier to get your name go

70 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

around because it is somehow free to take your music around. Like YouTube or Spotify, is easier to upload things. So I think there are ups and downs. It takes me to another social media, which recently I notice how it has become a way of staying closer to your listeners, since concerts are not happening. How has been the interaction between Caliban and their fans on social media? You think is important to use it? We are a band that is very close to our fans, especially on social media. But for example, we didn’t make a streaming concert yet, maybe we will do. So for us is important to keep this contact, but we always had


this social media communication. Right now, concerts and world tours are impossible to happen in a safe way. Do you have any idea how things will be after the pandemic? How do you think it will change? I’m not sure. In the beginning, we still would have restrictions, people will have to get used to concerts once again, but after a while, it will be ok. You know, people have this thing they forget about the past… So let’s say concerts are possible in October, latest next year summer things will be complete to what was before. Maybe it will be a little bit more expensive because companies had been heavy affected by this situation. So besides that, I think after a while things will return to what it was before, at least what

72 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

I think. I must ask, you mentioned an online concert. There is any possibility Caliban will do a streaming concert? We had an idea to do a streaming concert, not only a gig, we would like to do something more with an insight of the band. Something like an evening with Caliban. A chat with old friends, reply to fans’ questions, do a concert and do something after the concert, so will be something more personal, not only a concert. That is not interesting, because if it only a concert, they can simply go to YouTube, find an old concert and just enjoy it. So need to be something more special.

Photo: Firemoon Pictures

Foto: Christian Ripkens


And last but not least, you mentioned today about an upcoming album, when we can expect that to come? We wish you all success and hope to see you in Brazil once again! Like a said the new album is ready, we just have to record some little bits here and there. Let’s say 95% is done.

74 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

It’s gonna be a heavy album, and we gonna release it as soon as the pandemic is over. At least to the point, we can do somehow a tour. I guess we will release it in December next year, but it is not set in stone. Uow… I think had been 6 or 7 years since we had been in Brazil, so we hope we can return again someday!




hat music is a universal language, everyone already knows that… but who really wants to search for bands outside the US/Europe axis? Every day there are bands from countries that we don't have much information about, nor about the music scene, especially for Heavy/Rock. And it is from Thailand that we bring a pleasant surprise, the metalcore quintet Annalynn. They show their strength and carry a scene and a country on their backs. It's because of these guys that we now look at Thailand and see that there is also Heavy/Rock happening there. The band consists of Bon (vocals), Eak (bass), Pob (guitar), Boss (guitar) and Mong (drums) and brings nearly twenty years of experience, open mind and professionalism. Releasing their newest album, “A Conversation with Evil” opens the doors to the western world and they embark on this trip head on and already reaping good results. It's an album worth listening to! Very friendly from the first contact with Rock Meeting, the whole band answered the questions to demonstrate how they are united and focused on this journey. Read it right now and meet Annalynn.

76 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Annalynn is a band that is almost twenty years old and is now working to be known outside Asia. When did you feel it was time to expand to other continents? Bon - Although this is just a small first step for us, we are truly excited and really happy. Because we have strived so hard just to get to this point, especially when you are a band from Thailand.

You recently signed with Cube Records, from Japan. What has this partnership brought to Annalynn? Bon - - Well, before we officially joined Cube Records, we have known Crystal Lake since 2014. They always helped us out and gave us advice about working and touring outside the country. And of course, working with Cube Records

has brought us to another level in terms of promoting, dealing business, getting exposed to the audiences and media. It is very important for us to get a chance to work with the label and band that have the same goal. So, working with Cube Records and Crystal Lake are just great. In the western part of the world, we don't have much news about the


music scene in Thailand, nor about Rock / Metal. Do you believe that you are bringing new looks to Thai bands and even to the local audience? Pob - The fact is many western people don’t even realize that there is this kind of music in Thailand. You can see it clearly from their reactions when they watched Closer to the Edge and Holy Gravity music video. They seem to be amazed after knowing that this is a band from Thailand. Many times, during the tours, other bands that we met always said they never knew before that this kind of band exists in Thailand. So, we kind of proud that at least we made them recognize Thai band. Bon - Being a metal band in Thailand is not easy, due to the majority trends of Thai listeners. But actually, the Metal scene exists in this region for a long time and although it’s only popular among a small group

78 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021



of fans, metal never disappeared from music scene during the past 20-30 years. Since your first release “First Shut Up Then Shut Down” (2004), going through “Stare Down the Undefeated (2015) until arriving to your latest work “A Conversation with Devil (2021)”, how do you evaluate the musical trajectory of Annalynn? Pob - We learned from all the mistakes we’ve made in the previous records and tried to improve for the next one. All the experiences we’ve got from making one record would take us to another level for the new record. We would write EP album before making the LP to experiment with the new sounds or new direction that we’ve never done before. Eak - We never want to write the same record over and over. We always keep up with the music trend and apply it to our music direction. Bon - Some fans probably think we’ve changed a lot in our direction. But if you listen to our music care-

80 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

fully, you’ll see that the essence of our music has always been the same since 2004 just adding some new materials to it. We find it challenging every time that we try or experiment with new ideas in our works. It’s important to be open minded, whatever you do. “A Conversation with Devil” is an album that has a very moving musical mix. How has the listeners' response been to this new work by Annalynn? Pob - There are very good feedbacks from fans. Many of them said this record is catchier and they can play it over and over. I’m sure all the fans are familiar with heavy stuffs that we made, so this time we wanted to challenge ourselves in writing music to expand our fan base. Bon - We were looking to make the record that is emotionally completed, that’s why this record has everything from catchy songs to heavy, head banging songs. I have always been wanting to write a record that people can listen to every single track without skipping. You know,


like when we were young, it was just so exciting to listen to one record from the beginning to the end while reading the lyrics from the booklet. And this record is like that, it tells the story of the whole album through each track. With important musical appearances on “A Conversation with Devil”, these personas brought even more weight to Annalynn. To name a few, how did the choices of CJ McMahon (Thy Art is Murder) and Masato Hayakawa (Coldrain) happen? Pob - We were once the opening band for Thy Art is Murder in Singapore and we got a chance to meet them. By the time we wrote the song “Holy Gravity” we felt that it’s one of the heaviest songs on the record, but something was still missing, so we thought about bringing in the guest vocalist and CJ was the first one that came across our minds. For Masato, we got to meet him because we’ve played in Japan many times. People want to see our collaborations, and here it is, the song ‘Damage Control.’ Bon - I got to meet Masato the first time

82 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

at Truenorth Fest. back in 2017. Ryo (Vocalist of Crystal Lake) introduced him to me. We have seen Coldrain played live for the first time, and it was so impressive. No wonder why Coldrain is so popular. After that we got to meet with Masato again many times when we played in Japan, at Coldrain live and even at BLARE Fest. It was 2019 that we’ve talked about our collaborations. I think it was at Coldrain’s after party in Tokyo. I happened to be in Tokyo at that time and went to that live show unexpectedly. It was all coincident. From that meeting, I thought that it would be cool if Masato sing in our song. So, it eventually happened in 2020 when everything was in perfect timing. The first manifestation that a new album was coming was with "Closer to The Edge". A strong and connected song with a sound so modern that is featured in the main playlists on Spotify. Has this song conquered the space you were planning? Bon - It went far beyond what we expected. Boss - Exactly, the feedback in Spotify was so impressive and it’s good to see our song featured in many playlists abroad. Thanks for the love, we hope


someday we can play this song live for you guys around the world. Eak - We want our song to get to the fan base as much as possible and communicate with them. "Closer To the Edge" really did the job. A phrase in “Scars and Wounds” caught my attention: “All I want the most is the truth that you can’t even give”. What is the truth that you are looking for in that part of the music? Bon - “The Truth” refers to any word or anything being said from the one we trust, which is better than being silence or ignore that is killing you. Because in reality, being silence in the breaking down relationship can mean you are lying or hiding something from another person. "You can’t escape the pain to survive the day, whatever it takes, do it all over again" this part in "Damage Control" is a constant fight against yourself. How can the individual move forward with this challenge? Bon - When life is suffering, when no choice is also a choice. We have to cut it loose before things get worst. It’s the basic instinct. Making

84 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021


life better in everyday, surviving all the shits, I believe everyone can make it, just change your mindset. That’s all. “Weight down your soul, blindfold the humanity, becoming a slave to the choice of fallacy”. Paralleling this part of “Holy Gravity” with the current world moment, where can we find these fallacies that blind humanity? Bon - We are all disguised with or being

86 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

fooled by something in our lives, like politic, society, religions or whatever, because when you believe in something you can do anything for it, good or bad. Just like you are being blindfolded. “Leveling God” is one of the songs that I like most on this album. In addition to having the heavy elements that I like to hear in the songs, there is an impressive transmission of feelings. How important is for music, to be that instrument of emotion? Boss – Thank you. Good to hear that. That’s exactly how we wanted it to be. The main groove of the song consists of easy rhythm part but heavy and strong from low tune sound of 8 and 9 strings guitars along with Whammy effect. Plus, the Diminish chords that give Dissonant Sound that we added every here and there. All together you get a crazy nervous breakdown track. In “An Evil Aftermath” I highlight the phrase “Heaven knows, I am a flaw”. Throughout the album, there is a constant struggle over internal


problems, questioning everyone and everything. What is the next step after recognizing itself as flawed? Bon - Yeah, the concept of this album is about internal problem, grievance and disappointment in our lives. The answer you’ll find after listening to the whole record is not really the escape or the solution to those problems. But instead, I hope you’ll find the way to live with them, which I think people nowadays really need it. Annalynn has ambitions like any other band, which way are you heading now? The sky is the limit? Mong - It seems hard for bands from Asia, especially from Thailand. But many Asian bands have already proved that they can go big worldwide, so why can’t we? There is no excuse not to try. The metal scene is concentrated specifically in two markets. In addition to the question of logistics, what do you think is missing for Asia to be a third music hub? Pob - Not so surprise that Asia is not on the list, because metal scene in

88 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021


each Asian country is so small. Nonetheless, we believe that people around the world now probably start to see that the Asian bands like Crystal Lake and many other bands are gaining more and more popularity. It might take some time, but eventually, Asia will be one of the world’s hub of Metal scene in the future. Finally, can we wait for a live stream? Success and we look forward to seeing you in Brazil.

90 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Thank you! Eak - In the situation of Covid-19 pandemic where there are no live concerts going on, we are trying to find the way to utilize our music at best and live stream is of course one of the best choices out there. We hope to get a chance to do the live stream session soon. Bon - When things get better, we hope to go back to touring again. And of course, if there’s a chance, Brazil will definitely be on the list! See ya!




ock Meeting has found a wide and dynamic music scene that doesn't have the proper airing, as much as it deserves. And thinking about it, since September, we go after what is not being seen, bringing to the knowledge of our readers the bands that are emerging and those that already have an ongoing career. Luckily for us, the French quintet From Dusk to Dawn is this band, deserving to be heard. Like every band, they work hard to deliver their best sound and they are aware of their goals that are set and well defined. Formed by Florian Costes (vocals), Jean-Baptiste Muller (Guitar), Axel Ané (Guitar), Red Mertah (Bass) and Jacques Maupeu-Wise (Drums), they want to be recognized for the music they make, and it won't be difficult. We talked to the friendly Red, he talks to us about the past, present and future with his feet on the ground, aware of the work that will come in each edition, and he assures us, this year he will still have more releases to do. Follow us! From Dusk to Dawn has that classic line-up of friends who got together to form a band. However, you are from a generation born within technology. How do you use it in the band’s favor

92 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

and as musicians? Axel - I would say the technology can be of great help but has to be used carefully. Indeed, very often it helped us collect skills and to gain autonomy. For instance, we record guitar and vocals by ourselves, we mix our music by ourselves and now we have even started to do videoclips by ourselves. We are now playing guitar on digital amps, and it gives so many possibilities,

which is a great thing for sure. At any time, we are just one footswitch away to any amp or guitar effect possible. But do we really need to change the guitar tone between each song, or to add effects in every song? Does it really support our music? Very often, less is more, and we must remain careful not to dig in the ocean of possibilities without a clear intent in mind, otherwise we might just lose time or even

harm our music. We’ve been experiencing a vibe of new bands with well-defined objectives, and it wouldn’t be different with From Dusk to Dawn. How do you see yourselves in five years from now? We definitely have some well targeted objectives; without them we wouldn’t have the drive to deliver all the work



94 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

necessary to push our band forward. In 5 years from now, I see ourselves signed to a solid label and touring Europe opening for top tier bands. To give a concrete example by naming another French band we really like, being where Landmvrks is at right now would be a success for us. But targets are made to be finetuned along the way and trying to imitate another band is not the way to go, we’ll make our own way and we’ll see where we land. Let’s talk again in 5 Years to see what happened haha. Modern Metal bands are the ones that use digital platforms the most. Due to that, music is more and more accessible. How has FDTD related

to these devices? Yes indeed, our activity on digital platforms is almost as important as our music. There’s much to say on this topic but I think we can focus on streaming platforms. Music is easily accessible for everyone, that is true, but we could argue that it is as much a burden as a privilege because any music consumer is drowned under the choice, and many people rely on their platform of choice’s algorithm to choose for them what they’ll listen to. In addition, we could say that for consumers, it costs the same to listen to a band engineered and produced by the best audio guys and written by the best musicians working full time on music. There’s no reduction on the consumer's Spotify bill if they listen to


their local bands, so why would anyone do it? What I mean after all this, and the reason why I am saying that digital platforms are at the very heart of our activity, is because if we don’t take this seriously and promote our music correctly, people won’t even know we exist or notice we released new music, and our work will be in vain. We could also talk about social media which is the only space left in this pandemic time for us to exist publicly, but maybe it is more positive not to do it and to focus on live shows which are only a few months ahead. 2021 started and you guys put out two singles. Do you intend to keep these dynamics up to the release of a new EP or do you already intend to launch the first full length? To be honest, we are still trying to figure that out. All plans could be good if they are correctly executed. But for now, we are unsure about the timing and are finding ourselves comfortable by releasing separate singles. It is a privilege to take the time to make a videoclip for each song, to give it a proper promotion and identity that people can remember. By listening to the first EP “Blooming” and the songs re96 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

leased after that, one notices your musical maturing. Do you evaluate the old material to elaborate what is to come or is it a natural path that bands go through? Thanks, I’m glad you noticed an evolution in our music! I would say there are several variants influencing this evolution, but the most impactful ones are probably the experience as a songwriter, and the experience of playing live music. The more we write, the better we become at evaluating the options we have and choosing wisely. In addition, when playing live shows, we can see how people react to our music, how they dance (fight? haha) on what we thought was an intense part, etc. Both combined probably have a significant impact on our way to write music. But for sure there’s also some evolution in our everyday’s life and in our taste that influences our music. “Play Pretend” is a song that talks about depression. It’s a reoccurring issue, but each band sings about it in its own way. How does FDTD portrait this disease in its songs? Any experience or close people living this drama? Our singer who wrote lyrics for this song suffers from this disease, which is why he had to express himself on this


specific topic. Florian decided to go for an “ironic / first person point of view”. When it says in the chorus “I feel good” or “the smile on my face”, it is not what he feels but what he wants everyone to believe or to pay attention to, even though the truth is different but hidden behind a mask. Still regarding “Play Pretend”, the pandemic has raised the depression rates. How can music help people who are going through this moment? I’m afraid I don’t have the skills to answer this question. I think listening to music you like can bring you a moment of joy, but depression is more linked to fulfillment than to happiness, which is why I would say it requires support from a specialist more than a metal band. “I Belong to Myself” is a message to oneself, even a form of encouragement. What inspired you guys to write a song to remind us to keep loyal to ourselves?

98 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

I had to make a strong move in my personal life last year and I encountered a few remarks from people around me. Even though I encountered opposition, I personally was confident in my move and wanted to remain true to myself and decided to give it a go anyway. For the anecdote, the move was to leave my current job which was safe but against my value to grab another job which was aligned to my ethic. COVID striked, all proposals I received went to trash and I’ve been unemployed for almost a year. “All my seeds, all my gifts, that’s who I really am, I made a pact to make my path”. By thinking about our own actions, in what moment of life does the phrase “I Belong to Myself” come to surface? IBTM is a sentence that pops up everytime someone is telling me what to do or is trying to influence me. I mean, I can consider advice when it’s on the restaurant’s menu, or about what consumable I should buy over another one. But for personal decisions, I don’t want anyone’s thoughts to weigh on the balance when I should be the only matter of the decision. You have just released one more single. “Suffocating” is


straightforward and brings an important message about the hyper media coverage that has caused anxiety. How has the repercussion of this song been? So far, it’s been great, we are really happy about it! We were very proud of this song when we wrote it, even more when we received the final mastering audio file, and we were looking forward to this release with a lot of excitement. So far, the feedback is very positive, and we couldn’t be happier. “The world is dying, no more smiles, no happy ending”, this part from “Suffocating” draws attention. In such a connected world, why have people used the social networks to harm others? I think this topic is very complex and does not have a single source of explanation, unfortunately. Socials can be very helpful or beneficial, but harmful at the same time if you don’t pay attention to your connections. And even if you are being careful, just by existing on social platforms means that you expose yourself to others and have a public identity which can be attacked or at least criticized at any time by a person you don’t even know. Why would people

100 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

use those social networks to be mean? I don’t know, and I think I don’t want to know. Still concerning “Suffocating”, by observing how people have behaved and everything that has happened, do we lack empathy? How do you guys see the world in the next years? Very hard to answer this one, but I would say yes, overall, we do lack empathy. We all try to live decent life and struggle to

pay the bills, when you read the news and read that third world countries can barely get heard and obtain COVID vaccines, that there’s a fascist rise in the world while at the same time inequalities have never been this high between rich and poor, that thousands of people die in the Mediterranean Sea trying to join Europe, etc.… it’s too much to take for any sensitive person, you have to build a protection for yourself, or you might lose your mind. Unfortunately, I believe it is a synonym of losing empathy, but I can understand the reason why. I truly have no clue on how the world will be in 5 years. I don’t want the pre-pandemic world because we all know it is not sustainable and harmful for the planet, but on the other hand I don’t want to keep going with the current claustrophobic world we’re living in. But I’m very curious to see how things will evolve and I hope we’ll create a better version of the old world. By the way, answering this question gives me ideas for lyrics. Wouldn't it be cool to write a song about this better world we could imagine, like a kind of “prediction”?


In these times we live without shows, bands have live streamed to fill the gap. FDTD has gifted its fans with a “Blooming” EP studio livestream. Is a second one part of the plans to introduce the new songs? Funny you say that, because yes indeed there’s something planned, but we are not the owner nor the organizer, therefore it is not ours to announce the event. All we can say right now is… stay tuned! This is the end of our interview, but, before we go, what can fans expect from From Dusk to Dawn for 2021? Thank you very much and we wish you success. Take care! 2021 should see 2 additional singles come out, and one of them is really wild, very different from our already existing songs. We are really excited about this one and truly hope it will be well received! Thank you so much for this interview, it has been a pleasure to answer all your questions!

102 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021






he greatest show on earth. I’ve used these words before, in 2018 to be more precise, but I use them again for a very plausible reason that will be explained throughout this Live Report. Rock Meeting was invited to watch “An Evening With Nightwish a Virtual World”, a livestream that would present the band’s new album, “Human. :||: Nature.”. In 2020, many bands released new albums and were unable to tour for promotion due to the pandemic. From that, a new presentation movement with livestreams began. Many bands have done this, and with Nightwish it would be no different.

104 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

The visit to Brazil was scheduled for May 2020, starting the tour of “Human. :||: Nature.” for South America. There was a huge expectation with the new album, besides, of course, having the privilege of seeing the tour first. But we all know that the plans were modified and, now, if all goes well, only in the second half of 2022. At the end of 2020, Nightwish announced a livestream, a virtual experience never done before. However, in January 2021, bassist Marko Hietala, a striking figure both in voice and on stage, left the band


and this took everyone by surprise. Pointing out numerous reasons for their departure from the group and public life, the pandemic calls for a reflection on the musicians’ perspective on everything and on the music industry. Hence, a quest for a new bass player started. A difficult task, because Marko had played an important role in the musicality since he joined Nightwish in 2001. The live, which was for March, was res-

106 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

cheduled for May and generated a lot of expectations. On May 28th, just before the first streaming, the new bass player was introduced. Jukka Koskinen, from Wintersun, the same band as drummer Kai Hahto, joined Nightwish. Tuomas Holopainen (keyboard player) and Emppu Vuorinen (guitarist) remain from the original line-up.


AN EVENING WITH NIGHTWISH A VIRTUAL WORLD It was two days of a unique experience that deserves applauses. Two distinct setlists that rescued songs that hadn’t been played for years. Not to mention the adaptations made, since there was no longer Marko’s voice, like “Planet Hell”. On the set, images of a large interactive hall that changed according to the music. The band made use of chroma key technology, very common in cinema, and now at the service of music. What was projected gave the feeling that everything there was real, that they were in fact in that place. Very well done and not cheap

108 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

at all. There was an investment for this live to happen and it completely left the stage environment. They innovated in livestreaming. A point that deserves full emphasis is the sound. It was the best sound I’ve ever heard at lives. Congratulations to everyone who worked to deliver something clean and crystal clear. Let’s get to the show. It started with the intro of “Music”, showing Kai Hahto’s skills on drums and then comes “Noise”, the first single that introduced “Human. :||: Nature.”. The song works very well live and left that feeling of wan-

ting to see it with an audience present, with the human warmth we miss so much. Then, “Planet Hell”, the first song in fact to know who would take over Marko’s vocals. Well, Floor played that role, as neither Troy Donockley nor the new bass player would be able to perform. She did her best, it’s true, but I confess I miss Marko, he made his mark and it’s a song that was made to have two vocals. To make it short, I will stick to the differences in the setlists. Overall, in addition to those


110 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

already mentioned, the songs played were “Élan”, “Storytime”, “Harvest”, “I Want My Tears Back”, “Nemo”, “How’s The Heart?” (album and acoustic versions), “Last Ride of the Day”, “Ghost Love Score” and “The Greatest Show on Earth”. Needless to say, how wonderful these songs are played live. Just an addendum to “Harvest”, which is part of “Human. :||: Nature.”. It was the second single released, it has a calm atmosphere, and it was a good opportunity to see her live. From the songs played on the first day, “Tribal” is part of the new album and it works very well live, the vibe is really good. It’s supposed to be on the setlist forever. “She is my sin”, classic of the classics, could not be missing. And already seen during the Decades tour, success whenever it plays. “7 Day To The Wolves”, for me it was a pleasant surpri-


se. I didn’t think it could be played again. I loved it! “Bless The Child” requires no introduction. Another classic played was the acoustic version of “How’s the Heart?”, which was very beautiful. Whoever follows the band has already seen this version. “Shoemaker” was perhaps the most anticipated song by the fans. It rescues what Nightwish once was, lyrical. But we know it’s just a pass and Nightwish won’t go back to the way it was. That needs to be said. About “Shoemaker”, it’s beautiful, it has to be on the setlist and it will always cause wide eyes, contemplative smile and goose bumps. Applause! On the second day of the live, we had “Alpenglow”, a song that has already performed very well live. The

112 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

album version for “How’s the Heart?” it’s also another one that should always be on the setlist. The acclaimed “Dark Chest of Wonders” and “Ever Dream” were present. Both need no introduction, are striking, impressive and will always feature in Nightwish’s repertoire. “Sleeping Sun” was a total surprise on this second day of live. I don’t even remember if I’ve heard this song in the Nightwish shows I’ve watched. A treat to watch this song again. “Pan”, a song from the new album, is another one that I never imagined would be played. It surprised me with its strength and I believe it will continue to fight for a place in the setlists. In the two days of live, “The Greatest Show on Earth” finishes the work. Needless to say how great it was and only reinforces the title of this special Live Report. At the end of it all, when we were already regretting that it was over,


the band formed a semicircle, toasted that unique moment, to life and, suddenly, came a little more Floor, for our delight. Floor sings the final part of “All the Works of Nature Which Adorn the World: Ⅷ. Ad Astra”. She doesn’t sing, she enchants. Truth be told. And we wait for everything to go back to normal, safely,

114 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

so that experiences like this can be done in person, sharing the same joy and passion with the person next to you, celebrating that moment. For the rest, it’s about taking care and continuing to hope that everything gets better. Until then, for more livestreams like this from Nightwish.




Photo: Willian Marques

116 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

fter four long years, the Brazilian band Eminence releases their sixth studio album. “Dark Echoes” is full of social criticism and reflects what the band has experienced before and after the pandemic. Eminence is formed by Bruno Paraguay (vocals), Alan Wallace (guitar and synths), Davidson Mainart (bass) and Alexandre Oliveira (drums), and you can be sure that this new play has their face. “Dark Echoes” is not just another album by the band, there are a lot of people involved who endorse the messages the quartet wants to convey. That's because it counts with the participation of Björn Strid (vocalist of Soilwork), of Jean Patton (guitarist of Project46), of Márcio Buzelin (keyboardist of Jota Quest), for example. The production was done by the Danish Tue Madsen (Antfarm Studios), a producer known for his work with Moonspell, Behemoth, Meshuggah, Rob Halford, Vader, Dark Tranquility, Kataklysm, Suicide Silence and Heaven Shall Burn. Few references to Madsen, eh? Rock Meeting had the pleasure of talking to Alan and learning from him about the recording process, why the personas chose to appear on the new album and other matters. “Dark Echoes” is now available on digital platforms, just play.

Photo: Willian Marques

After four years without releasing new songs, Eminence kicked off 2021 with a preview of their sixth studio album, “Dark Echoes”. How has listeners reacted to it? Alan - For us it was a pleasant surprise that everyone's receptivity to the first singles was super positive, and we managed to add new fans.

features guest appearances by members of Jota Quest, Project46 and Soilwork. How did you come up with these names to contribute to Eminence's sound? The Bjorn Strip was through our producer Tue Madsen (Meshuggah, Heaven Shall Burn, Behemoth) who introduced us to a mutual friend who bridged Bjorn. The album "Dark Echoes" We showed him our pre-pro-

duction and made the invitation, it was really cool that he accepted! Jean Patton from Project46 and Márcio Buzelin from Jota Quest are longtime friends. We thought that for this album there had to be some special guests and this partnership worked out really well. The lyrics of “Dark Echoes” clashed with poli-



118 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

tics, racism, homophobia, social inequality, seen in Brazil and around the world. Is this song an outburst? Is it a way to make the listener wake up to what is happening? We could not remain silent with everything that is happening in the world and especially here in Brazil. We had to take a stand and we showed that standing around watching all this happen is unacceptable. The music is indeed an outburst. With your 25 years on the road, how do you use the experience you have to address socially relevant issues, especially in these times of pandemic where prob-

lems appear on a large scale? On all our albums we talk about social issues and now even more. “Dark Echoes” is an accumulation of everything we went through before and during the pandemic. In a second moment, you released the song “BYOG”, heavy criticism about those who manipulate and sell the faith. What is the reason to portray the disapproval of this religious practice in the form of music? If we stop to analyze, look at what is happening in Brazil today and in a good part of the world. The false prophets, selling the religious dream getting rich and the people mostly dying of hun-


ger, manipulated in the name of God. Can we call this religion? The issue of religion and politics are very close together and we have to wake up people who are not seeing this. "Wake Up the Blind" portrays how human beings have been cruel to the environment. Has the current moment of pandemic made you reflect even more? What is your perception of what has been happening in Brazil? The planet has been warning for a long time about the devastation of nature and the bill is coming. Here in Brazil, the Amazon is being decimated like the Pantanal and so are the indigenous reserves. We are living through a terrible moment of deforestation here in Brazil. The mining mafia continues. The videos for "Wake Up the Blind", "Dark Echoes" and "Into the Ashes" were produced by Bruno Paraguay (vocals)

120 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

and Davidson Mainart (bass). What is the advantage of producing the sound itself? Is it a way to connect even more? Besides them being also composers of the works, it was a complete synergy of us doing this within the band! Paraguay and Davidson's production and direction was really cool. Still talking about music videos, why did you choose to portray contemporary solo dance on "Into the Ashes"? How did the dance reflect the message of this song? The general idea of the music video came from vocalist Bruno Paraguay in passing on the feeling of the music in the dance. And yes, we managed to convey this essence of music with the dancer Debora Roots (Grupo o Corpo). Launching an album is usually a daunting task. And during the pandemic, how was the production, creation...? What were the ease and difficulties of developing an album during the pandemic? We started pre-production on the


album in April 2020, remotely. Each one at home sending files, lyrics, and arrangements. In the beginning the adaptation process was very difficult, but after about 3 months it started to flow, and we managed to do all the pre-production. The album cover has as its concept the idea that, although we are connected, we are distant not only geographically but spiritually, and this reflects exactly the moment we are living. How do you see the weight of the pandemic in this aspect? In a post-pandemic scenario, will we be more united or more distant? The pandemic came to change all our concepts and mainly to show how fragile we are as human beings. I think the post-pandemic can make the world a little better, I still believe in changes. Unity is strength!

122 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021

Eminence has always targeted the market outside Brazil. Why do modern metal bands face more difficulties in launching within their own country? We have always had the opportunity to work abroad, and we would love to be able to work more here in Brazil. The biggest difficulty I see here in Brazil is the long distances and the cost of doing a tour is unfeasible for local producers. I think the public has changed their mentality a lot and every day I see more modern bands appearing in Brazil. As musicians, you've already seen what the Modern Metal scene is like out there. In Brazil, even though union is preached, this is not quite true in practice. Why is there this resistance with more modern bands? What are the points that Metal in Brazil needs


to improve? I think that here in Brazil there can't be this distinction between bands. Abroad there are shows of Black Metal, Death Metal, Metalcore and Heavy Metal at festivals. Each in its own style and respect the respective tribes of varied styles. Here in Brazil, it will take a while for this to happen, but it will be a matter of time. If the metal scene doesn't come together, we'll never be heard anywhere. Finally, with the uncertainty of the return of the live shows, do you intend to make a livestream? Success always, take care! Thank you! We don't have plans to do an Eminence Live yet, we are concentrating on promoting our new album. We have a documentary of the recording to promote as well. I believe that by the end of the year we will have a lot of material to release yet. but maybe we’ll think about a live.

124 // ROCK MEETING // JUNE. 2021