Tag Archives: heavy metal interviews

PiercingMetal Talks To Blackguard’s Paul Ablaze (3/2010)

Logo - Blackguard

Artist: Paul Ablaze, lead singer for Blackguard
Label: Sumerian Records
Interview Date: 3/1/2010
Genre: Pagan Metal

I learned about Blackguard first from a noted scribe in Metal’s realm and then from Alissa White-Gluz, the singer for The Agonist and with such powerful believers in their camp I felt compelled to look into them. At the time the band was known as Profugis Mortis and they had never been over to this region, and since I had no direct contact with them outside of the Internet, I was left to enjoying their MySpace songs while maintaining a hope that they would one day embark on a US tour of some kind. Since this time the band had signed a US deal to Sumerian Records and a European one with Nuclear Blast Records and most important of all – had changed their name to the much more imposing “Blackguard”. The name change seemed to open new doors for them as we found the band appearing on the second go round of Pagan Fest and then on tour with bands like Ensiferum and Epica. PiercingMetal.com was able to sit down with the bands singer Paul Ablaze for a quick chat and here are the results of our discussion.

PiercingMetal: Let’s start with a very simple one. What made you decide to change the bands name from “Profugis Mortis” to “Blackguard” and how long has the band been together for those just coming into learning about you at this point in time.

Ablaze: We’ll the band has been together since about 2001. It started with Terry and juice and since then the band has developed into the line-up you see today. There’s only been one line up change since our first record “so it begins” and that was the replacement of our former Violinist for our current lead guitarist Kim.
As for the name change, it initially started before the first record. We tried changing it then but we couldn’t agree on a name. Then when we started talking with Nuclear Blast Records they were telling us that there were a lot of bands around Europe with very similar names, so they asked us if we’d be willing to change, so we gave it another go and decided on BLACKGUARD.
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PiercingMetal Talks with Alissa White-Gluz of The Agonist

Logo - The Agonist

I had caught The Agonist for the very first time when they opened up a show for Epica back in September of 2007 and I was immediately impressed with the way that singer Alissa White-Gluz does her thing. She is a kick ass straight-edge Metal chick with a number of interesting aspects to her life which made setting up an interview something that would generate a lot of interest for our readers. Of course, the girls absolutely hectic and insane schedule led to our exchanging emails and doing it via that medium. Having met a few times at the clubs you will find that we managed to hold our internet conversation just as if we had done it face to face. The Agonist is among the hot new signings to Century Media Records and a band that delivers up the Melodic Metalcore with crushing abandon. The four piece group is led and fronted by Alissa White-Gluz who is a young woman of talent, strong conviction and incredible focus on her reasons for doing things. We met up with Alissa backstage at one of the shows in NYC to talk about all things The Agonist but the often hectic nature of appearances led us to having this done via email. Read on to find out what makes this beautiful young lady tick and how she plans on keeping the audience thrilled as the band continues to rise.

PiercingMetal: It’s nice to get a few moments of your time Alissa based on the bands apparently rigorous touring schedule. Before we talk about the group let’s go back to your own beginnings as a performer first because I am wondering how you even got your start as a musician. Care to enlighten me?

Alissa White-Gluz: Thanks Ken! I actually really just got started in my first metal band because I happen to be friends with a lot of bands seeking singers. To help out I told them I would search around for freelancing vocalists. After not really finding any, and not wanting to let my friends down, I decided maybe I would suffice! My house has always been full of musical influence, my mother being a great appreciator of good music. My older sister also has a band, called Badflirt (very different from the Agonist!). So basically, music was never a foreign concept to me, but I also never really thought I would be playing it to this level.
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PiercingMetal Talks To Lauren Harris (6/15/2008)

Lauren Harris is the daughter of legendary Iron Maiden bassist Steve Harris. She is also a Rock and Roll singer in her own right and is set to release her debut album “Calm Before The Storm” on Demolition Records. Tonight she would be continuing her adventures as a solo artist by opening up for Iron Maiden as the band returned to the legendary arena Madison Square Garden. We met up with Lauren backstage to talk about her feelings about being the daughter of such a musician as well as being the opening act for his incredible band, her own career goals and thoughts on the music business from someone who is just now approaching this as a part of their life. Below is the full dialogue that we exchanged.
Logo - Lauren Harris

Artist: Lauren Harris
Label: Demolition Records
Interview Date: 6/15/2008
Genre: Melodic Rock

PiercingMetal: As the world knows full well, you are the daughter of the legendary bassist of Iron Maiden, Mr. Steve Harris. I am curious as to what that actually feels like for you being a performer. Do you feel you have a lot more impressing to do for the general public based on this relationship?

Lauren Harris: I think that in some cases you will find people who say “ok, impress me” because you are the daughter of a legend or kind of an icon or whatever some people kind of see him as but for me myself I try not to not even play up to that because I just think that with them having a twenty five year career and they’ve done so much and he’s done so much as well that I cant even begin to even stand up to what they’ve achieved or what they’ve done so personally I try not to think about it too much and instead try to just do my own thing and do what I do. I also try to have a good time doing it. I do sometimes get the whole nepotism thing and people kind of stick that out there but I think that I wouldn’t still be here if I was rubbish or not doing a good job or I couldn’t hold my own. He can really only get me so far and I have to go the rest myself because his name is not going to be able to carry me the whole way through for whatever I do so yes in answer to your question I try not to think about it too much.
Continue reading PiercingMetal Talks To Lauren Harris (6/15/2008)

PiercingMetal Talks To Atrocity’s Alex Krull (3/30/2008)

Alex Krull is the imposing front man for the German Metal band Atrocity and when he is not doing that, he shares the stage with his beautiful wife Liv Kristine in the band Leaves’ Eyes.  We saw Atrocity as a part of a Death Metal festival show back in 2005 and were blown away by their intense power so we were a little bit surprised when the band decided to release a follow up to their covers album as opposed to another mind melting Death Metal epic.   The album was entitled “Werk II” and since the group had not returned to our shores sine that 2005 we sat down at the keyboard and did an email interview with the main man of the band.  To learn more just scroll past the logo.ain PiercingMetal.com site.

Logo - Atrocity

Alex Krull is the imposing and dynamic front man for the band Atrocity and for the past couple of years he has also been a part of the growing popularity that is Leaves’ Eyes, the Gothic Metal sensation that’s fronted by his wife Liv Kristine. As a band, Atrocity has walked many different paths over the course of their career and while beginning as bone crushing Death Metal have morphed into Symphonic Melodic Death and even touched upon that which is Gothic. Capable of delivering surprise after surprise, the band followed up the epic “Atlantis” with a second volume of classic 80’s New Wave with “Werk 80 II”. We snared some time with Alex and talked about things Atrocity, Leaves’ Eyes and life as a touring musician with a family. Read on for his insight into the new album, videos that are in the making and how he manages to keep a balance with all of these exciting projects.

PiercingMetal: Before we discuss the new album, let’s talk a little about the band in the touring sense. The last time that Atrocity appeared in the States was during an Extreme Metal festival which made a stop at the now closed down CBGB’s in NYC. Since the group went over so well at this appearance, I had expected to see you performing again shortly after but it didn’t happen. Why doesn’t the band gtover to this region a little more often?

Alex Krull: Yes, you are right; the US shows we did went very well! And I have to say it’s a pity that couldn’t have the chance to come over more often with Atrocity to the states, also back in the past of the band! At least we managed to tour a couple times with Leaves’ Eyes in the meantime, and we’ll be back with Leaves’ Eyes in September and maybe we have the chance to play also some shows with Atrocity then or in the future. Well, let’s see. In the moment we are happy that we finished the album, after we toured nearly in 40 countries in the last years with our two bands Atrocity and Leaves’ Eyes and on top we had this big production with a symphony orchestra and choir for the “Werk 80 II” record! So it took all a little bit longer than expected but we are very happy with the result. Many fans allover the world asked for another WERK 80 album, so here we are and we had great fun producing it as well as it contains new ideas and elements, too!
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PiercingMetal Talks To Bobby “Blitz” Ellsworth from Overkill (1/18/2008)

Logo - Overkill

Overkill is one of the legends in the Thrash Metal annals of history and the band while going through a number of guitarist lineup changes has remained the core of D.D. Verni and Blitz for decades. Consistent touring and album releases prove that the band still has what it takes to entertain the fans. There are few bands like Overkill because not only are they able to say that they helped the genre form but they also never really swayed from the path since their inception in 1980. The band recently released their new album “Immortalis” on new label Bodog Music and they are seldom found off tour. Having just caught a smoldering gig at B.B. King Blues Club, we made plans to speak to the bands enigmatic front man Bobby “Blitz” Ellsworth at his earliest convenience. We caught up with him on the telephone in the beginning weeks of 2008 and found him eager to talk about a wide number of topics that ranged from the bands beginnings all the way up until today. We talked about a little bit of everything that Overkill was up to and even covered some of the singers other adventures in life and music. The transcription of our entire conversation is presented for you below.

PiercingMetal: As Metal history has documented quite well – Overkill was one of the very first Thrash Metal bands around so I am curious as to what it was like performing this type of Metal back when the genre itself was still in its formative stages.

Blitz: Stop, I think I’m popular but I think that what made it sell was the commitment to it. Not just by ourselves but by those who were also within the genre, those who believed. Obviously that following grew into legions at one point and still to some degree to this day. There was a great value to it and it was influenced by what had come out of the United Kingdom with the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal and with us stuff like the Dead Boys and The Ramones to a certain degree, Motorhead. It was different, it was new, but I think there was a great belief in it and that’s what sold it in time.

PiercingMetal: When the group first began what would you say appealed to you most about the kind of music you chose to do and what events led to the formation of Overkill.

Blitz: My Father sat me down I remember and I was in college but we were doing gigs at night and it was Overkill, rather a version of it and I think it was right before Bobby Gustafson had joined the band, and he said “so what do you think about this music thing?” and I replied that I think we have a great chance to make some noise and maybe get a deal etc.etc. and he goes “are you sure it’s not just about free beer and girls” (laughs). Years later I confessed to him that in those early days I had lied to him and that it was mainly about free beer and girls. But there was something different about it obviously and it was aggressive, it was action versus reaction and I think that this was the first time barring Punk that there was action versus reaction music. Definitely for the first time in Metal. Pits formed, and there was natural movement in the crowds, stage-diving started up. The Hardcore scene grew out of it so in some sense it was the planting of the seed that became the mighty oak. So it was really cool to be there at the beginning.
Continue reading PiercingMetal Talks To Bobby “Blitz” Ellsworth from Overkill (1/18/2008)