Hanna Tsepesh: Olá (Hello in Portuguese) André! Thanks so much for accepting this interview and Welcome to THE GATES OF METAL! First of all: how are you and how are the things doing with your concerts?
André: Hello! I'm okay! Thank you for all the support in the first place! About concerts I can say that we stopped temporarily, but we have some local calls and we have also to present the Ep. But nothing concrete…now the main concern of the band is getting a drummer!
Hanna Tsepesh: the band is searching for a new drummer, right? What quality’s the band are searching for a new M.O.R.G? If one drummer is interested to join to the band, can you leave the contacts?
André: Of course! First of all, has to be a person with a great dedication that knows how to work in group! Must have their own material, be available and belong to Porto or Santa Maria da Feira area, but if someone else from other location wants to join us that’s alright! What we want is someone professional with dedication and love for music like us! That person has to be ready to do some sacrifices for the band. You can contact me through my personal email (andre_sand_men@ hotmail.com) or just call me 919125377.
Hanna Tsepesh: for those who do not know the band, could tell us a little how it all started?
André: Well, I got into the band in 2007! I know that the band (M.O.R.G.) started in 2004. A few friends got together and formed the band: João Almeida (voice), Paulo Caetano (guitar), Claudio Maia (guitar), Pedro Simão (bass) and Miguel Coelho (drummer). About two years, they played in several local places and composed several themes, two of them are present in the Ep "Dark Pain" and "Devil Inside", despite having been modified by current formation topics. In 2007, Miguel left the band for personal reasons and Daniel Maia drummer joined the band, changing the band's sound and bringing a new maturity! After a few concerts, they have entered into a home studio to record a demo that never came out. Simão was put out by the band in May of 2007 and I joined the band with 18 years among people 25-28 years! It was very interesting. At the time I was starting to take steps in my music and they invited me, João had seen me play in a local band. He invited me and I accepted, of course! After I entered in the rhythm of the band, a lot of work fell into our hands! Claudio Maia left the project because of this process and, at the beginning of 2008, Vitor, best known by Gadelhas, joined the band. Because of him there was a huge change in the band’s music…about two months later, a lot of changes in our music were made. We participated in a contest for local bands and we won the award for best band of Santa Maria Da Feira - 2008! Besides the band had already won some competitions, I have noticed this was the most important! With the Grand Prize went to studio in the summer of 2008! In Chaos armed studio, but the atmosphere between the band and Gadelhas was not the best, many musical differences and a lot of disrespect. We stopped the recording of the Ep and we give some concerts in Lisbon and Porto and Spain ', but bad environment remained making. Vitor was placed outside the band! And so we began searching for a new guitarist, had several interested parties, but only one is shown with the necessary skills, especially at the level of person was a good fit, Liliano Sousa! We enter again in the studio and recorded the Ep in the summer of 2009 that was produced by Daniel Valente! And unfortunately for the band during this process Daniel Maia leaves the band for personal reasons! And here we are with an Ep released and no drummer!
Hanna Tsepesh: What inspired you the most to create the lyrics and what process the band use to create the riffs to comply with the lyrics?
André: It is a difficult question to answer… But the basic thing is the riff or a chorus, someone brings a good riff and we start to jam and develop the skeleton of the music during this process the voice will be pasting while the music is created, so we have a better idea of what works for us or not, that is unlike most bands that make up the base and then insert a voice in our case the voice is introduced during the creation process. But sometimes more in this new phase of M.O.R.G. already beginning to compose all the music at home and then shows up the idea to the rest of the elements, was something I started doing now and I have several ideas and music composed just for the future! On top of that we have some two or three unfinished songs with new guitarist Liliano that brings other influences for the band, so we are developing a new process of creating songs in the band for the future! About the lyrics, João is the main protagonist in this work, he creates the lyrics and vocal parts, but because I know it is based on a very personal way, and in his manner, but sometimes also based on the concept of the band's name, which goes back to the revolution and change the mind of our generation, this factor can be found very well on the song "Believe" and "Salvation" which has some messages for our generation! "Open your Mind"
Hanna Tsepesh: What are your favorite bands? You have any musician that you admire the most?
André: This is good! Favorite bands... hummm ... lets see.. In my taste, I have a variety of bands and styles that I adore and worship, I love out of Metal Funk Blues and some jazz, but the level of metal bands, I began to hear Metallica and I still hear, then bands as Megadeth, Carcass, Testament, Motorhead, Misfits, in a more old school style! But I can say that my main benchmarks for the composition are Carcass, Arch Enemy, Dark Tranquility, Metallica, Dream Theater, Black Sabbath, The Doors, etc. The level of musicians, I'm a fan of Cliff Burton (RIP), I love that song he left us "Orion" as others, am also a big fan of Victor Woten, Geezer Butler, John Myung, Greg Christian, Rex Brown, Les Claypool, James Hetfiel, Dimebag Darrel (RIP), Michael Amott and Ken Owen. Due to its importance in the composition, and the unique qualities of each!
Hanna Tsepesh: When you start to play bass? It was difficult to learn?
André: I started playing bass when I was 16 I think it was in 2005, took lessons with Paulo Barros (Tarantula) and a professor of jazz and blues in the area of Aveiro, Zeto Robinson who scored quite my style of play. It was not hard for me to learn because I always spent a lot of my time on the instrument, each instrument has its difficulties and the Bass is one of them, many are indifferent to the bass as the weakest link in the band, but this is an injustice, the importance of the Bass in a band is more than a guitar, why? I say why! The bass is the glue between the drummer and the rest of the band, is what makes it all sound a wall, is very important because it’s rhythmic function to monitor the Drumms and the guitar, and try to add some musicality to the music. I´m not trying to take importance to the guitar in the band, all instruments are important, I just want people to think that bass is not easy, or bass is easier than guitar, each instrument has its own techniques and their purposes, and we must work very to do it at all!
Hanna Tsepesh: I have one curiosity: your vocalist (João Almeida) has any singing lessons or other preparation?
André: No! He developed his style of singing through their influence that only he knows who they are! And with many years of practice! He told me he already sings from his 14 years of age! But I can say that he investigates a lot and always tries to improve, remove voice exercises, and is very careful with it, before playing or recording, he does some exercises to warm up and out there!
Hanna Tsepesh: oh, very cool! What was the highest and lowest point of your career as a musician?
André: My highest point of my career as a musician was when I gave my first concert abroad in Spain in the city of Vigo! It was a big step for me as a musician and the band! The lowest is already more complicated because I have had many low moments, but this time was the loss of our drummer, it was like a brother to me! And lose it has been very difficult to accept!
Hanna Tsepesh: Let’s talk about the “M.O.R.G.”EP. I liked a lot this EP and I was very surprised to listen to some 80’s elements on this EP and also we can listen to some Thrash elements too! I send my congratulations for the entire band! IS a really interesting EP! Can you tell to our readers what they can expect from this EP?
André: What our readers can expect from the Ep is basically a set of five very different songs! Each with a different story and message that together form a union very complex! In general the level of production and recording, we had a lot of time and many personal difficulties to record this EP, it took 5 years for high-terms financial stability and staff to give we take this step forward! The sound level think Daniel Valente, our producer did a great job, is a uniform sound and work well, as mentioned we have many influences present in the sound as heavy and thrash metal, but also have many components melodic! Now one by one! The song "Feelings" was a theme created by our former drummer, I think the music is more universal than the others, more melodic with a heavy message-level lyrics, "Believe" is now a more progressive music full of Riffs Thrash old school and perhaps the heaviest song in the Ep with a message to people in general, "Dark Pain" one more song Heavy Rock, with a letter typical of thrash metal, then we have the "Devil Inside" a theme Thrash melodic with some punk rock influences, such as letters rather good, which speaks of the devil that everyone has within himself, finally we have the "Salvation" is a purely heavy metal music, with influences of 80 years, the level of letters has to do with our band name and the revolution of the mind of our modern generation!
Hanna Tsepesh: at recording studio, you guys faced with difficulties? If yes, tell which was and how as the whole process?
André: The record was a slow process but very fun and creative, we had no problems, all pledged to do the best in parts and had a very competent producer and that left us very at ease! But until we recorded it we have some difficulties, changing elements, even during recording as I said, financial problems, but with a great spirit of sacrifice and dedication have been exceeded and the end achieved a good result!
Hanna Tsepesh: If one of our readers wants to buy your EP, what they can do?
André: If you want our Ep to simply add firstname.lastname@example.org or send an email to morgband.04 @ gmail.com! Its simple so do not hesitate!
Hanna Tsepesh: I liked a lot the EP art cover! Is like an X-ray of one monster! Is a really cool! Who was the person behind this work? You think that this cover transmit what this Ep are?
André: Yes I think the cover forward and our vision and what is present in the EP. It was a cover drawn by a close friend of André Rios Burning Strain, a band that I recommend to listen, and transmits the aggressiveness of our music, is basically an angry Pitbull in X-ray, as these types of animals can be quite violent as friendly , what is present in our sound! An aggressive yet melodic sound! Simple but straight to cover in my opinion!
Hanna Tsepesh: Very interesting! what is your favorite music in this album and why?
André: In general I think the song "Feelings" is very good, but as a musician I prefer the "Believe" I love playing this song has a bass line very diverse, with mixtures of slaps and other techniques, rhythmic and very heavy! I can shake my head during the music. Very fun too plays this song!
Hanna Tsepesh: What is your opinion about the metal in our country (Portugal)? You think in now days are easy to get support?
André: This was a question I feared, Because I have a very personal opinion about this, and they cannot agree with me, but in five years what I think is that there is still much to do, very much, I give in crazy because of the lot of a nightclub across the country, for the pop music and others styles, hundreds and hundreds, and there is not a infrastructure large enough dedicated to metal, only bars and small clubs to tiny bands touch with poor conditions, taking place or another, but we need someone with the courage to create a infrastructure large enough for the metal bands playing, we need a hard Club again, or something like that. But something that also annoys is the lack of respect for metal bands, but to start his own metal bands have to respect themselves, for there is much competition in this country, and much hatred between bands, which is bad because we are all in the same boat, if we can we help improve the quality of the bands and the conditions for these! We have had several bands that I will not say the name, that tried to harm us and affect our work, of course they failed, but with five years of band already know what the bands that are true and have love for the national metal and which are just to compete and say they play more than this and that! Bands such as Web, Burning Strain, Hells Blood, Warchittect, Buhdy, these are some of the bands that have a futuristic mindset and help the national metal! In the level of disclosure, I think we are an example, Portugal has plenty of people willing to help garage bands and give some coverage to their work, such as blogs and forums, many people who love the style created to publicize the bands, and has done a great job as your example THE GATES OF METAL is one of them, to give the bands an opportunity to outline the work!
Hanna Tsepesh: Yes, and I hope to see more people helping the bands! Do you want to send any message for the people who going to read this interview?
André: Yes! Be yourselves. Help to disclose the Metal in Portugal and the level of M.O.R.G. I can only promise that we will make news, and we will always strive and be true to ourselves, a lot of developments and surprises await you, and can always see some of our videos on our Youtube channel where we play songs that are not in Ep unfortunately! And above all we will always be truthful in what we do and say!
Hanna Tsepesh: Thanks o much for your answers and time. THE GATES OF METAL wishes the entire band a big success and a great 2010! Hope to see you guys very soon on stage…
André: Course! Since I thank THE GATES OF METAL and You Hanna for the time and dedication in helping us, to all the readers who read this interview! And I hope you enjoy the Ep ready and that I can say to disseminate and support us as they can! And we are looking for drummer interested in being part of the band! Thank you all! And Rock On!
Hanna Tsepesh: You are very welcome André! Thank you for your words! All the best...
By: Hanna Tsepesh
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Publicada por THE GATES OF METAL Webzine