Welcome to Cazador Nocturno. How was the band born and who are its current members?
Hi guys, and thank you for this interview! The band was formed back in 2015 when I randomly met an old friend of mine (and now former HyperioN drummer), Jason. He was looking for musicians to create a new heavy metal band that could mix the british “NWOBHM” style with the american power metal vibe. We begun to jam and soon found out that there was a good musical chemistry between us.
the current members of the band are:
Luca Fortini (Guitars)
Michelangelo Carano (Vocals)
Antonio Scalia (Bass)
and of course I Davide Cotti (Guitars).
How many discs do you have edited and how can you get them?
So far we released two full length albums, “Dangerous Days” in 2017 and “Into The Maelstrom” in 2020. Both albums were published by spanish label Fighter Records, so you can get them in their online store – or, if you whish to support the band directly, you can use our Bandcamp page (hyperionbandheavy.bandcamp.com) where you can also find all our merch.
Why did you decide to baptize the band Hyperion and what meaning is hidden behind that name?
The name Hyperion comes from a sci-fi novel by american author Dan Simmons. We are all big science fiction fans, and we thought that it was a very good sounding name for a heavy metal band. Later, we found out that we share the same moniker with some other bands (both in the metal world as well as other genres), but at that point we were already fond of the name, so we decided to keep it.
Italy has been characterized by having a high level of Metal bands. At present, leaving aside this pandemic that has affected the entire planet earth, what level of bands is Italy at? I mean if the metal scene has grown even more or because of the pandemic, many of the bands have decided to step aside.
In Italy we have a very large number of metal bands, and the overall quality is generally quite high. Just in our own city of Bologna, which is not as big as Roma or Milano, we have nearly one hundred active metal bands! I don’t think that many bands decided to step aside because of the pandemic, they are probably all waiting for more suitable times to release new stuff and go on tour. We had a very bad luck with our latest release, because when “Into The Maelstrom” came out we were in the middle of our first lockdown and all our concerts got canceled, but now finally thing are going better here in Italy, and we were able to go back on the stage just a few days ago, on June 11.
Let’s talk about your first album released in 2017. How was the compositional process of the songs and where was it recorded?
As soon as the band was formed I immediately begun creating new music. I always loved writing songs, so that part came quite naturally, and since I hadn’t played in a band in almost ten years, I was coming up with tons of riffs and ideas. The most challenging part, however, was working on the lyrics: in my past musical experiences I was used to just composing music, but this time it was needed from me to write the lyrics as well, and it wasn’t easy at first. When I got the hang for it, however, writing lyrics became one my favourite things to do and an integral part of my creative process.
What do your lyrics on this album talk about and what is the message you want to deliver to those who listen to said material?
I don’t believe HyperioN has a specific “message” to deliver, surely not a political one. Most of our songs are based on things I’m passionate about, like our song “Dangerous Days” which is about the movie Blade Runner (probably my favourite movie of all time), or “Ground and Pound” which reflects my love for mixed martial arts and combat sports. The thing I love the most about writing lyrics in heavy metal is the great storytelling power that this powerful and epic music can deliver.
The album remained as they had captured it in their head, or listening to it today they would change something, and if they had to change something, what would they change about that album?
I believe I wouldn’t change anything about the songs, but if we had to record it again today, we would probably use better recording facilities and professional sound engineers, like we did for “Into The Maelstrom”, to better capture the performance of each musician and improve the overall sound.
How was the presentation of this album and what was the public’s reaction?
As soon as the album was ready we were very lucky to get a very good deal with Fighter Records, and they were able to promote the album very well. We got some very good reviews all around the world, and the great reaction of the fans at our live gigs gave us the confidence to write the songs for our second album right away.
Have you done a show in another country other than Italy?
Unfortunately, not yet. We had plans to play many shows to promote “Into The Maelstrom” in 2020, some of them in other countries, but as we all know the pandemic hit in the same exact period the album came out, and we had to cancel all our dates. We are hoping to plan something again in 2022, but we’ll have to see how the Covid situation will evolve.
Do I want you to tell me about your latest album Into the Maelstrom, specifically what this album is about?
“Into The Maelstrom” is not a concept album, but I guess that if you want to find a deeper meaning in the lyrics, you could say that the message is about diving in what you believe with everything you have, and never holding back from a challenge. You can find this kind of themes in many songs, like the title-track “Into The Maelstrom”, “Fall After Fall” and “The Ride of Heroes”, among others.
In what circumstances does the compositional moment of the songs take place, is it group or individual?
Most of the times I write the songs on my own and then record a demo version for the guys of the band. Sometimes the finished song sounds very similar to the initial demo I made, but in other instances we work together in the rehearsal room, perfecting the arrangements and the vocal melodies. To give you an example, the song “Bridge of Death” came out almost identical to my first demo, while “Bad Karma” went through many changes while we practiced it together.
What positive and negative experience does working with a record label have for you?
To be honest, we really didn’t had any negative experience with Fighter Records, as they did a very good job promoting our albums all over the world, and they also granted us full artistic freedom. Maybe, nowadays releasing an album under a record label is not as important as it was ten or twenty years ago, but I’m still happy with our decision to sign with Fighter. One thing I really don’t understand, is when bands pays money (sometimes, lots of money) to enter the roster of some low-tier record label or promotion. If I were them, I would spend that money in a different way, ahah! It is always best to find a label who trust you with you music and you attitude, someone that is willing to invest their money in it, otherwise it might not be worth it.
Who is in charge of writing the lyrics?
Usually I write all the lyrics for HyperioN, but sometimes our singer Michelangelo comes up with some ideas and we change a verse or two. I’m always happy to have some kind external input from the guys, because I believe that is the way to write the best material. In fact, the song “The Ride of Heroes” on our latest album was actually created from some lyrical lines Michelangelo wrote, and I believe that it translated in one of our best songs.
What is a Hyperion show like?
First of all, our shows are loud and really full of energy. That is the real essence of heavy metal for us, and we sweat our ass off on the stage, to fully involve the audience in the performance. Moreover, we’ll never, ever, use pre-recorded tracks, as everything you hear comes from our instruments and our amps. I know that today many bands use that kind of tecnology, but we are an old school, traditional metal band and we respect our fans enough to trust them they will understand this concept; heavy metal need to feel and sound raw and alive, otherwise you might loose it’s very essence.
Future plans of the band
We’ll see how the pandemic situation will evolve, and we’ll try to book as much live show as we can until the end of the year, maybe also in 2022. Meanwhile, I believe the time has come to start thinking about another album, so we’ll se if something new will come up in the next few months.
Thank you so much Cazador Nocturno for this interview! Guys, head over to hyperionbandheavy.bandcamp.com to stream our music for free and check-out our merch (the “Into The Maelstrom” t-shirts are almost sold-out, so hurry up!), we’ll see you soon – let’s keep heavy metal alive my brothers!
Alejandro Allo 03/24/21