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Michael Rinakakis (Event Horizon X)

Interview with Michael Rinakakis from Event Horizon X
by Michael Dalakos at 05 February 2006, 8:17 PM

Event Horizon X is definitely one of the best choices if you're searching for damn good Power Metal from Greece. With three albums on their backs, lots of live shows and appetite for success, I managed to interrogate the band's mastermind, Michael Rinakakis…

Event Horizon X return with another album. Please let us know about the band’s activities during the period between this new album and your previous release…

Due to the fact that the Far Across The Wasteland concept was already complete in my head (both lyrically and musically), a short while after Along Came The Winter was released I started working on the third album by firstly recording the drum tracks! Meanwhile we were trying to arrange more live shows (as the last one we performed was with Rotting Christ, a couple of days before the A.C.T.W. release) so we managed to appear with Brocas Helm on 23/03/05 in Heraklion as well as headline the 8th Cretan Bikers Gathering at Komos (Matala) on 02/07/05, at which time I had already concluded all the remaining instrument and vocal recordings on F.A.T.W.! The rest of the summer of 2005 I was basically relaxing for a bit and at the same time discussing with the distributors we work with (Cosmic Storm, Twilight Vertrieb, Nightmare Records), trying to ensure that F.A.T.W. - as well as my previous two albums-would be released worldwide!

I find the fact that you work on your own quite interesting. Most one man bands are placed in more extreme genres of Metal music. However you have a full band for your live appearances. Why doesn’t this band follow you to the studio as well?

Ever since I started composing, I have been very specific in how I want my music to sound like… when it was time to start recording my first concept I had to face the fact that you can’t tell other people exactly what to do when it comes to performing which is something I really am ok with because when you play with other musicians (especially when it comes to Heavy Metal) everyone should be who they are and certainly not someone they are told to be! To that end (baring in mind that I could play and record pretty much all four instruments) I made a choice corresponding with both of these beliefs. On the one hand, concerning the studio, Event Horizon X would be me and me alone (recording my own creations, expressions, performances on each album). On the other hand since I always loved performing live and playing with other people there would be an Event Horizon X live lineup in which everyone would add their own touch into the music (creating a second, slightly different, version of it)! The only thing I had to do next was find a group of people that like and respect my music and consequently add stuff into it that we would all enjoy which luckily, after a bit of a search, I did!

What can you tell us about the recordings of the new album (where was it recorded, how long did it take etc)?

The F.A.T.W. recordings took place at my home studio in Rethimno (as did the A.C.T.W. ones) - which I moved from Heraklion a short time after the release of Fall Of Darkness - and I completed the album in about 5,5 months! The main reason the recordings took so long (for each of the previous two albums they lasted from 2,5 to 3 months) is that this was my first attempt to record the drums as well (in contrast to the programming on the previous two) which I wanted to sound as close to perfect as possible and needed roughly 3 months to do so since I used an electronic drum set (via M.I.D.I.) and had a lot of practice to do and many test recordings to perform!

Compared to your previous attempts, do you believe that Far Across The Wasteland takes your music one step (or more) ahead?

Absolutely! It is my belief that every next album should be a better album than all the previous one(s), one step up at least (in general) and I’d like to think that this is (and will remain) the case when it comes to E.H.X!

Why is the album’s duration so short? We don’t often see albums run for 30 minutes…

As you can see all three albums I have released so far have about the same duration (30-35 minutes). This is no accident! Whenever I listen to an album that runs more than 45 minutes long, even if it is awesome, after some time I tend to skip tracks… that is something I always wanted to avoid when it comes to my concepts! Each of my albums is a story, either epic (F.O.D.) or sci-fi (F.A.T.W.) or even based on a theory (A.C.T.W.) and in my opinion a story or theory should always be listened to in one piece! So if I have succeeded in my goal everyone of my albums will most of the times be played as whole (and hopefully, some times more than once!)! In any case, I have tried from the very beginning to make sure that the prices of the albums are as low as possible compared to most of the newly released albums these past two years so that the whole value for money topic would not be an issue!

What are your influences? What bands do you like?

My influences are basically… everything and anything I have experienced in my life until now, good or bad, consciously or subconsciously in any aspect! I like a lot of bands from various genres (the complete list would be too long!) but the music of E.H.X is often described as mainly influenced by bands like Iced Earth, Blind Guardian, Gamma Ray, Judas Priest and Virgin Steele though I would add a few others such as Crimson Glory, Savatage, Megadeth, Annihilator, Nevermore, Kamelot, Brainstorm, Dream Evil and so forth!

You are based in Crete and though it is the biggest island in Greece (and one of the most beautiful ones) it still remains an island. Does that make your life (as a musician) difficult?

In some aspects I would have to say yes, but in general I love life in Crete and even though I want to visit hundreds of places around the world, I can not imagine myself living anywhere else! Ever since I released F.O.D. I keep hearing If you want to succeed, get out of Crete, If you want to succeed, get out of Greece. Let me tell you something: I know it is very hard to arrange live shows worldwide from down here, I know I can’t fully control the promotion of my music wordwide from down here. But in exactly two years I have managed to release three albums, have them distributed worldwide and arrange to perform in live shows that may all have been on Crete and nowhere else but included bands like Jag Panzer, Brocas Helm, Rotting Christ, Marauder and Power Crue! So we may not yet be able to go around the world but we can certainly make a small part of the world come to us. Which makes me think that even though some things may be harder than if I was based e.g. in Athens or abroad, anything is possible!

The album includes a video clip and other goodies. Do you think that such treats are essential in order to attract buyers?

I believe that anything you can put in an album as bonus material (without it necessary being something that costs a fortune or takes a lot of time to create) will make everyone that purchases the album more satisfied so you are also more satisfied having created that material! I completed the video in 5 days (2 days of shooting and 3 days of montage) and the expenses were insignificant, still I think it is fair! …and so will the next one be…!

Have you planned any live shows for the promotion of the album?

We have already performed the F.A.T.W. release live show with Jag Panzer on 09/11/05 and at the moment I am trying to arrange a few shows in Athens and several other parts of Greece until the summer at which time we would hopefully also have arranged a couple of shows abroad!

A set of less serious questions. If aliens abducted you, what song would you play for them?

Sailing Away from the F.A.T.W. album! Definitely!

The most hilarious thing that ever happened to you while performing?

One day before the show with Jag Panzer we decided to play a certain tribute song as an encore - requested by one of our fans in Heraklion - which seemed like a great idea at the time! The problem was that on one hand we didn’t have enough time to fully rehearse it and on the other I didn’t have enough time to memorize the lyrics (having heard the song a total of 5 times in general!) and so, having agreed to play it no matter what (!) I wrote the lyrics with a black magic marker on an A3 size page, photocopied it 5 times and threw it on the floor when we got up on stage! That way when we played it whenever I started headbanging between the verses I caught a little glimpse of the lyrics as a reminder (even though I missed a couple of verses!)! The most hilarious thing about all this was that we played the song almost excellent and the response from the audience was truly amazing!

Thanks for the serious answers. What are the immediate plans for Event Horizon X?

Perform as many live shows as we can arrange in as many different places as possible! I have already started working on my next two albums but there will not be a next E.H.X release until the year 2007.

 Thanks for your time. Close this interview with a message to all our readers…

An enormous THANK YOU! to everyone around the world that has supported E.H.X. in any possible way, I hope I get a chance to meet you all someday! And never forget that you will always be, true Archonians!!!


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