Ashkan Safapour interview

Ashkan Safapour : “I prefer the original music. Fans pay to hear and watch our music”

Satura has recently drawn attention big time. here we talked to the band’s leader, composer and guitar player, Ashkan Safapour.

satura

Click here to read the interview in Farsi

Pouyan Madadi Interview

“Doing covers is not always bad”

we talked to Pouyan Madadi , 5grs leader, about his work and its ups and downs.

5grs was formed 14 years ago and the current members are:

Pouyan Madadi on guitar, Yashar Mojtahed Zadeh on drums, Aiden Hasanzadeh on guitar and Mohammad halaji Zadeh on bass and vocals.

Pouyan Madadi

click here to read the interview in Farsi

 

Empyrium interview

Empyrium is a German symphonic folk/doom metal and neofolk/dark folk band.

It was founded in 1994 by Markus Stock and Andreas Bach, but later many other participated.

Empyrium draws inspiration from nature.

We had a little chat with Markus before Empyrium’s reunion with their fans in Istanbul, Turkey September 7th and 8th.

1-Where do you usually get the ideas for the songs and lyrics?

Inspirations come from deep within ourselves. Also nature has always played a huge role for Empyrium. Also we are of course inspired by other music too and also poetry play a big role.

 

2-What took you so long to make your latest studio album?

After our 4th album „Weiland“ we quite Empyrium in 2002. Only in 2010 we reunited and started writing music for our 5th album „The Turn Of The Tides“ – this is why it took so long.

 

3-You have both German and English songs. Which do you prefer making more?

It always depends on the setting of the song. The more folkloristic songs work very well with the German lyrics since they tell about German myth and fairy tales and German nature. The more romantic songs are often heavily inspired by British romantic literature by Lord Byron or Shelley or Keats and naturally I think they work better with English lyrics.

 

4-Why did you replace violins for flute?

The original flute player Nadine (who is my wife by the way) is not very interested in playing live and since I knew the violin player Aline from her work with her band Neun Welten and really liked her playing I thought we give it a try to replace the flute with the violin and what can I say – I think it works really well in a live setting.

 

5-Seemingly the fans enjoyed the early albums better. Will you go back to making music the way you used to back in the early days?

We are working on new songs since over a year already and yes there will be some songs/parts reminiscent of earlier Empyrium works.

 

6-Do you prefer making studio albums or be on tour and play live?

100% Studiowork. I am working as a record producer as a dayjob for other Metal bands from all over Europe and I always loved the creative process. I like playing live too and I absolutely enjoy sharing the emotions with the audience in a live setting. But I see myself much more as a composer than a performer,

 

7-Did you know you got a lot of fans in Iran? And have you listened to any rock bands from here?

Yes, I know we have a big following in Iran and I am grateful and amazed that some of the music that I composed when I was 16-18 (first two albums) years old made it that far. Deeply grateful for that!

 

8-You’re playing Istanbul September 7 and 8 (Where many Iranian fans will show up) Is it your first time playing there? And will there be an opening act for the shows?

We already played in 2016 two concerts in Istanbul. Probably two of the most memorable shows we ever played for our Turkish and Iranian fans. That‘s why we were really glad we got invited one more time this year to celebrate again our hymns to melancholy with our friends from Turkey and Iran!

9-What music labels have you worked with so far?

We always stayed on the label Prophecy Productions since 1995. Actually our first album „A wintersunset…“ was also the first ever release of the label Prophecy Productions.

 

10-Have you ever looked into the audience and see something funny that made you laugh?

I’ve seen a lot of things from stage. Funny (fails) and disturbing (fights) stuff. But I better keep this to myself…hehe

 

11-Is there anything else you wish to say?

Hail to our Fans from Iran! We know about you and we are deeply gratful for all the support over the years! Thank you so much!

 

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https://www.instagram.com/empyriumfans/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/994513967255089/

empyrium

interview by Aida Zarifian

Suburbian Rex interview

interview with Suburbian Rex

Anton, Ivo & Julian comprise Suburbian Rex – a Germany based rock trio. Founded in 2015. the band first focused on preparing a smashing live show and hit the stage in march 2016 for the first time. Since then they played about 100 gigs all across Germany and neighboring countries. After several festivals, their first tour and the release of the „Clockwork Universe“ EP, Suburbian Rex gained a lot of experience, professionalism and has now tasted blood for more.
Being somewhere indefinable between „Stoner Rock“, „Psychodelic Rock“ and „Classic Rock“ Suburbian Rex is an interesting live act for everyone that likes to flee from the unbearable mainstream pop (-rock).

We had an interview with Anton, Ivo & Julian. Go ahead and find out more about the trio…

 

1-Tell us about the band and how did you guys get together?

Rumor has it that the three of us have met each other long time ago in school, listening to the same music, having the same hobbies and sharing the opinion, that rock music seems to slowly die in peoples heads. I mean.. listen to todays popular music. No more words needed.

But in fact we all got brainwashed and reseted about 2,5 years ago.. we really can’t tell what happened before Suburbian Rex. All we know is that rock needs a proper revival in todays youth.. we don’t ask. We do.

photo credit: Patricia Heck

 

2- What can you tell us about your first EP?

Well our first Demo EP is a five song EP with legendary bangers like „Last Gang in Town“ and „Pair of Dice“. But that one is definetly not worth talking about. (laughing)

We released our first real EP „Clockwork Universe“ in June 2016. It was more like a compilation of the songs we liked most. We still tried to put a certain feeling in it, we didn’t want to have it straight forward into the faces, which lead us to the decision to put some smooth and more personal songs like „Tell me your story“ or „Behind those walls“ on it. But all in all back than it was time to finally release something that shows people „Hey we are here. Get ready for some heavy shit“.

 

3-Have you ever looked into the audience and seen something funny that made you laugh?

That moment when there are more people on the stage, than in the crowd…

 

4-Do you listen to music from the middle east?

„System of a Down“ and of course „The Lemonoise“.

 

5-Any projects you are working on right now?

Right now we are working on our debut album which we are planning to release next year. Songwriting, demo – recording, cover – design (cheers to Arash Zarifian). Another project we are working on right now is called holiday. Holy shit, last two years were intense.. we need a breather.

 

6-How did you come up with the Band title?

Too many Weizen and crazy minds. Don’t judge us, we are German!

photo credit: Patricia Heck

 

7-Which 3 songs should be your every road trip soundtrack?

Buffalo Springfield – For what its worth
Red Hot Chilli Pepeprs – Pretty Little Ditty
Parov Stelar – The Sun

 

8-What was the best show you’ve ever played?

Playing „Rockaue Festival 2017“. God damn.. rocking the smallest stage with tons of people in front of it. And they even became more during the gig. What would you say if women start running to your merch after your show?!

 

9-Any last words to say?

Thanks for taking the time to read this. Check us out on Spotify, Instagram, Facebook and everywhere you want. We love everyone who supports proper music. Don’t loose faith in rock, spread love, peace and harmony, take time for yourself and don’t let the modern society and stress enter your head till your gone. Be tolerant and be kind to unkind people. They need it most!

Thanks for the interview.

Anton, Ivo & Julian
Suburbian Rex

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All photo credits go to Patricia Heck, Ausdrucksstark Fotografie

  • Interview by Aida Zarifian

Partyzant Interview

Partyzant is a rock band from Poland consisting of a father as the guitar player and his son as the drummer. they got the chance to visit Tehran, Iran for the first time and did a show at Vahdat hall. As they would say it was their first time visiting Iran, but won’t be the last.

1-Can you tell me about yourself and your career please ?

Mikolaj: Actually the whole thing started with my dad when he started playing with the famous Polish band, “Dzem” and he was playing even before I was born. Now we’ve been touring as a band for five years, and we did some shows and it went so huge that we are right now in Tehran. It’s so great and we are very happy about that.

 

2-How do you define your music genre ?

Mikolaj: I think it’s rock music

Krzysztof: Rock music, metal music, classical music! Persian music!

Mikolaj : everything ! you see we try to put things together and search for some new things I guess and we are experimenting like we are trying to create something that hasn’t been done before, and we believe that we can do it, we’ll see !

Krzysztof: We just love to create new styles, you know..

 

3-How did you form your band, Partyzant ?

Mikolaj: Well It started with dad and my mom actually! he’s been taking me to shows and showing me a lot of stuff like he showed me musicians, instruments, and at the age of five I just decided that I want to play drums, and I’m doing it until today and when began to play kinda good, he was like let’s do it together and play together ! and I didn’t know how long it would actually last, but we did a few shows and we kept extending.

Krzysztof: It started ten years ago.

Mikolaj: and now that’s all we do, it happened naturally I guess and now it’s getting bigger

Krzysztof: now it’s officially what we do, and we are just a band and we play, and we are getting better and better.

4-how many albums or single tracks you’ve released so far?

Krzysztof: as for Partyzant only one album, but as I’ve made a lot of CDs, about 19

Mikolaj : yeah, but as a band together we made only like one CD, the second one is being made in Poland right now, we are recording it right now, and that’s all I guess, cause we don’t have like single tracks, whatever we do we do on Youtube and Facebook and other social media.

 

5-Who are your biggest influences?

Krzysztof: I very very much like Chopin, Paganini, that’s for classical music, when it comes to rock music, Metallica is my favorite band and I started because of them ! they played in Poland in 1987 to promote their album Master of Puppets and I was there of course and it was after when I knew I should start playing guitar. So Metallica, Metallica and Metallica and METALLICA!!

Mikolaj : for me things were kinda different actually, we are very similar in music taste but it all started with Slipknot ! it was all because of them, I saw them for the first time when I was 6,and I fell love in with them right away and it keeps on growing, they’re like my biggest inspiration. Basically that’s it, I could name some drummers but if it wasn’t for Slipknot, there wouldn’t be me playing drums I guess.

6-How do you feel being in Iran?

Mikolaj : it’s amazing, I can actually show you (shows a footage he shot during their show at Vahdat Hall) the Tehran audience went crazy ! how can we not be happy with that audience ? they treated us like we felt like home, they were quiet, they were loud whenever they should

Krzysztof:  we are one big family ! we’ll be back !

Mikolaj : exactly ! and I’m so happy to be here, I’m about to buy a house here, I mean I love this country, I’m wondering where should I buy it, in Tehran or somewhere outside Tehran, or maybe both ! I personally fell in love in this country (father says me too!)

 

7-What Iranian bands or artist do you listen to ?

Mikolaj : I can name one artist actually, Masoud Saeedi, and our friends gave us albums of interesting bands, and the most interesting one was Andisheh Hozhabr. So we listened to his album twice and it was very good, we’re gonna listen more.and we also listened to our friend Arash Koochakan, he has made music for movies, advertisements and it’s a different style, it’s great.

Mikolaj : some say It’s kinda like reggae and similar to Bob Marley, but it isn’t, it’s very original.

8-What else do you do other than music?

Mikolaj : do we do anything other than music? I don’t think so! well we fly by planes, we travel by cars, we sleep, we sleep a lot, and here in Iran we eat a lot ! the dishes in Iran are so delicious and crazy big I mean the size of them is crazy, it’s like I’m supposed to eat half of it and give the rest to some homeless or something.

 

9-What is your favorite Iranian dish?

Krzysztof: we had noon barbary and sangak, they were delicious, and jooje kabab, and gheime bademjaan and one more thing, Dough ! I love dough !

Mikolaj : and my favorite is kabab actually, and there’s this non-alcoholic lemon beer in Iran which I love, you can get a cold one when is warm outside, or when you’re thirsty and it just kills your thirst!

 

10-What are you future plans?

Krzysztof: we’re going back to Poland today, and then we’re playing two shows there, and next we play Germany for two weeks and after that we’ll record some new song

Mikolaj : I already told you about this recording, and we are about to finish it

Krzysztof: we just signed a contract with an agent in Iran that we will be playing here in the future

Mikolaj: yes we signed a contract with Alireza Farhadi, and now we can promise you that we will be back, it was our first time here, but won’t be the last time.

Krzysztof: now our question! what should we see next time in Iran?

Mikolaj: yeah what shall we see in Iran?

Aida : I hope to see you guys SOON again and let’s hope the next time you come to Iran, things are going to be better in here and we gonna have more concerts and stuff!

Mikolaj : and I wanted say thank you very much for the interview and spending time on us.

Aida: it was my pleasure.

 

interview by Aida Zarifian

Piclavier Interview

Piclavier is a Teharan based band. They officially started their career in 1393, the lyrics to their songs are English and French and they’re gonna release their first album soon.

1-How did you guys met and how did you form the band?

Mostafa: Shayan, Mehran and I have been friends since high school and we got lots of memories that one of them ended up in Piclavier. Meeting Mehran had a real fun story… so we were 4 friends. Farhad was our bass player but sadly he left the band but he was a founding member and one of our best friends. We did music and enjoyed it a lot and then decided to form a band and play rock music.

 

 

2-Who came up with “Piclavier” as the band name?

Mostafa: we were trying to come up with some title for the group during one of our jammings, and after lots of thinking and checking,all of us agreed on Piclavier as the band title.

 

3-Where do you get your ideas for composing?

Mostafa: usually, Mehran comes up with the ideas and the rest of us work on it and he’s also the lyricist of most of our songs. But recently Mahyar has written some real good material which we all dig and hope to write much better stuff together. also, not to be forgotten that Shayan usually takes care of all arrangings and stuff……

 

 

4-What was the best show you ever played?

Shayan: I think it’s different for each of us… for me, 2 of them were my favorite. Our first performance which was an underground show ( though we had the certificate for it) and people liked our show a lot that made us continue with the band more seriously and go for bigger shows,also the show at Azadi back in Ordibehesht of 1395 was hell of a fun.

Mahyar Salehi Nia: yeah, Azadi was my favorite one too.

Mostafa: We’ve never had a bad show, have we ? I liked them all!

 

4-Have you ever been in a real fight with the band?

Mostafa: How can you not ? but we always manage it somehow.

Mahyar : We are four guys with lots of ideas and different perspectives,but at the end of the day, one thing that keeps us all together is the fact that we are intimate friends

Shayan : Of course the are differences,and arguments at points but as Mostafa said we always somehow manage to get over them and keep our friendship.

 

5-Who do you think was the first rock musician in Iran ?

Shyan: As far as  I know,Kourosh Yaghmayi was so big back in those days,there were also bands who would do English songs.

 

7-Do you think technology is helping music or helping destroying it ?

Shayan : There’s no stopping it,is there ? I think it’s contributing.

 

 

 

8- can you tell us about your album? How long you’ve been working on it ? when is it coming out?

Mostafa: We’ve been focusing and working on our album since last 2 or 3 years and been trying to do our best.

Mahyar: We’re gonna release our album in summer,the thing is this is officially the first English/French album to be released in Iran which is very exciting and we’re really positive that it’d do great.

9-What is next for you once the album is out?

Mostafa : We’re planning to do shows,we’re actually talking about in now,trying to set the right times and places.

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interview: Aida Zarifian

 

Interview with Abdi Ohadi Guitarist Aortae band

Abdi Ohadi Interview

Abdi Ohadi (born 1369 in Kerman), started playing guitar since he was 10 years old and in 1389  formed the band

Aortae with Homayoon Majdzade (Kahtmayan’s leader) and Saeed Piltan as drummer who left the band later.

1-  How did your childhood go?

I like my childhood a lot. Playing and watching cartoons and lonely times were my favorite. I was a quiet kid and

sometimes other kids would bully me which made me so sad, so I was happier alone.I’m still a kid inside.

2-  How did you form Aortae?

Aortae was the name I had in mind since high school, because of the unusual form of my own aortae . the band was

formed by the time Kahtmayan visited kerman. I composed most of the material through that time. The album

“Schizotherapy” was a series of my repressed emotions after years, I could never form the band without

Homayaoon.  Right now us two are the only members of Aortae.

3-  How do you write your songs?

Usually in the middle of the night and they totally just happen.I never said ok let’s pick up the guitar and write a

song! You always get good results while improvising.

4-  What is your favorite song among your compositions?

I’ve written lots of songs in different genres, “Still Bleeding” is so special to me and I did a cover of “Tide Is Turning”

by Roger Waters which is also my favorite.

5-  What do you think about the bands in Iran?

Personally, I think good things are about to happen. Things are getting better everyday. I’m a huge fan of

Kahtmayan and I also listen to other musicians. To me, the most important thing about an artist, is having a

character without technical complications,I seek for deep emotions,be it sadness,happiness,love or hatred.That’s

what appeals to me.Technics don’t quite work out without a nice concept behind.Also I think doing covers is a good

exercise in order to know the musical roots.

6-  What would you rather do, if you weren’t a musician ?

An author or a chef! I’m crazy about food! and I love writing a lot. Or I would be a basketball player if I could,or

maybe I’d do food testing.

7-  Do you think the meaning of mainstream has changed through times ?

Not the meaning but the place. If you check your Telegram you see everyone is so anti mainstream. Everyone is

looking for unknown artists that nobody’s ever heard of, but I don’t call the everyday musical events as mainstream

This is sad to see people have heard more Amon Amarth than Death and Andy James is more popular than Marty

Friedman. Or hardcore Camel fans don’t go beyond Rajaz and the song Stationary Traveller,or same thing about

Pink Floyd.Metallica is being punched from every side everday by those who cannot bear new different things

happening.They  go hard on the album “Hard wired to self destruct” and the performance with Lady GaGa and stuff

like that. I have my own way,I’d rather be eating a fancy meal at some old routine restaurant than having a routine

meal at some new fancy place,I might test the new fancy place and go back to it every once in a while,but my first

choice would always be that one old restaurant.

8-  If you could be a Disney character, who would you be ?

It’s the most interesting question! It’s so hard to choose cause I love them all… umm guess I’d like to be Goofy! He

has a cool character with weird adventures. He doesn’t live so logically. He also goes to beautiful places.

9-  Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I’ll be around ! trying to enjoy music more and getting better at it,with my big mind which is getting bigger

everyday.

 

interview by Aida Zarifian