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Tuesday, 6 February 2018
ANCIENT VISIONZ INTERVIEW WITH SHADOW REALM (CLASSIC/THRASH/PROG METAL)
1. Hello how is 2018 starting off for you and the band?
2018 has started off great for Shadow Realm so far – We played local shows and have scored international supports slots for legendary thrashers OVERKILL and the One and Only ROSS THE BOSS from Manowar fame.
2. When did you first meet the other members of the band and was it long before you all started Shadow Realm?
Im Constantinos the drummer for Shadow Realm, I had heard our vocalist Torsha on a session recording my friend did. It was a low key recording for his community. As soon as I heard his voice I saw a vision for a future band. That band would become SHADOW REALM. The bass player and guitarist of Shadow Realm also played in a black Death Metal Band with me called OATH OF DAMNATION. Matt is a great guitarist, I would even go so far as to say world standard, and Pahl is a super solid bass player and great guitarist vocalist in his own right. On keys we have Tim who has a classical and metal background and is an ex scientist, we knew Tim from other local bands but as a drummer though. I basically got Torshas number from the studio, I called him having never ever met him and asked to to join my new project with the before mentioned musicians. I told him my vision, which was to have a classical metal band with elements of thrash, progressive metal and whatever else we thought sounded good. I told him the other musicians are very strong and we would kick ass as a team if he joined in. He said yes. It was a phone call that I am very glad to have made. I had a good feeling about the band. This was in 2012
3. Shadow Realm seems to draw influences from a few different genres of music, who would you say are the band's biggest influences? And for the readers who have never heard the band's music, how would you best describe it?
We like to describe ourselves as classic/thrash/prog metal. Some say we have elements of Power Metal too. We don’t totally feel the whole Power Metal Vibe as we think we are a bit more harder edged and harsher, but are fine if people think that. Some people have said we are Ronnie James Dio meets Forbidden. Both are very big influences on us. I love prog music, thrash, black death metal and have a large background in Jazz. Tim loves classical music and bands like Nevermore etc. Matt is a massive forbidden fan. He also loves Franks Gambale, Al Di Meola, Vinnie Moore and Slayer hahaha. Pahl has a broad range of influences in Metal from Classic to Death Metal. Torsha is a massive Dio, Halford, Tony Martin, Bruce Dickenson and Bobby Blitz fan
4. War Of Archons is the bands debut full length, which is being released as a digital release, are there any plans to do a physical release this year? If yes, any idea when it might be released?
It has also been a physical release since Nov 2017. It is available from our Bandcamp site
5. Does the whole band work on writing the music or does one member usually write everything?
I (the Drummer) and Matt the guitarist write 95% of the music together. We jam and sing parts to each other, discuss how they can be arranged, what kind of part should follow or precede it etc. We film a lot of these interactions so as to have a reference. Another technique we like to use is a spontaneous Jam. I will count in the tempo when the whole band is present and improvise a song on the spot as a band – we sometimes get the main themes of a song this way – Matt and I will later refine the ideas. Torsha will jam vocal parts over the music, or we will tell him what kind of melody we hear over certain parts of the songs and to give them a try. Lyrically we have used poems with permission, or Torsha or Matt will write the lyrics.
6. I know Australia has a strong black and death metal scene, but what are the progressive and thrash scenes like?
The Thrash Scene in Australia is pretty good actually, not so much in our home city but interstate. We have some great thrash bands from Australia. The Prog Scene has its followers. I wouldn’t say its massive, but it does exist. We do have a Prog Fest interstate, but as of yet we have not played on it. We wouldn’t mind playing it but have not been in contact with the promoters yet.
7. Who are your all-time favorite Australian bands and are there any new bands you feel the readers should check out soon?
Matt loved an 80s thrash band from Adelaide called the Bezerker, not to be confused with a latter band of the same name from interstate. Pahl loves Hobbs Angel of Death. When I was younger I loved Damaged with Matt Skitz on drums, and was a fan of all of Virgil Donati’s Bands. Good Current Bands to check out would be Harlott from Melbourne, In Malice’s Wake and Asylum from Queensland. Another cool band is Claim the Throne from Perth.
8. Does Shadow Realm play live very often? What have been some of the bands most memorable shows so far?
We try to play every 6 weeks. Last year didn’t adhere to that as I was overseas in China for a month and Philippines for a month and filled in on drums in a Thrash Band for a 2 month USA tour. Now that all that is behind me we will charge full steam ahead. Our most memorable Shows so far would have to be Supporting Anvil, Playing The Legions of Steel Metal Festival in Melbourne and Supporting Lord
9. Are there any tours or shows planned for 2018 if yes where will the band be playing? Who are some bands you will be sharing the stage with?
We will be heading interstate this year for a couple of shows at a time, no long stretches planned as yet. We are working on getting an Asian tour lined up for the end of 2018 early 2019. Asia is very close to Australia and easier to get to. Australia is a very large country with very few cities. It is a difficult place to make the touring life work, unlike the USA or Europe where there is a very large city or town usually within 3 to 5 hours driving time. We have as I like to call ‘The Tyranny of Remoteness or Isolation”. I want to get back to Japan and China to play. We also would love to visit Europe at some point. We would be everywhere but the only thing stopping us is money. As said earlier we will be supporting Overkill and Ross The Boss from Manowar.
10. What do you enjoy the most about creating music?
I love the satisfaction that comes from producing a good product that im proud of. I want to make a cd that I would like to listen to, if I like my own CD I am a very happy person. Music is so subjective, everyone likes something different, but the way I look at it is, ‘how can I expect anyone to like my CD if I don’t even like it myself? I always have an early vision, I try to bring it to life and then if others enjoy it too it’s a bonus. If we tried to write for others I think it would not be as sincere and would not be as good in the end. It sounds all very self-absorbent and masturbatory, but we do not set out to be that way. I always try to imagine what it would sound like if I was in the audience listening to the band.
11. Have you started working on the follow up album yet?
To be honest we already have the material for the next couple of albums written except for vocals and lyrics. Matt and I and used to writing together having been doing it now in 2 bands. I think by the time we hit the studio we should have another 4 songs written
12. Is it going to follow on with the same kinda themes or do you like to do something different with new music?
We will be similar, Some songs will be simpler and others extremely more proggy. Always will have that Thrash element there though
13. What other music do you enjoy outside of metal and rock?
I like Flamenco guitar, Jazz, Classical and absolutely love fusion. I also like Latin music too. I would love to record a solo latin fusion album but have no time haha
14. What would be some of your favorite movies?
I’m a massive horror fan and loved George Romero’s Dawn of The Dead, I also love Full Metal Jacket. I like more of the older movies. Im not a big fan of a lot of recent movies. Matt and I like our YouTube docos more than anything, especially on ancient civilizations etc. War of the Archons comes out of our love of the ancient and mysterious. Pahl is a Star Wars geek but hated the last instalment so I was told. I also love my war and politics docos/discussions.
15. Is there anything else you would like to shout out or mention about the band?
Yes we would love if people visited our Bandcamp site to buy Merch etc. Also we are unsigned and are looking for a good label to take us on! If Metal Blade are Listening…. Wink wink nudge nudge haha.
Thx for taking time to do the interview guys and hope all goes well with future music. Peace and thank you, Ancient Visionz.