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Suicidal Angels’s Nick Melissourgos: “...it refers to the modern lack of respect. People have lost their respect to each other, everyone is intense for no reason, for no real reason”

Interview with Nick Melissourgos from Suicidal Angels
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 12 August 2019, 9:57 PM

On the verge of collapse, entering a violent cascade that is soon to tear the human race apart from within. It is not the first nor the last time this theme is mentioned. Funny thing is that it became a theme because nobody actually listens. At least there are those that still hail about it. The Greek Suicidal Angels returns with “Years Of Aggression”, a new prospect that is bound to make them a Thrash Metal totem. Steinmetal had a chat with Nick Melissourgos, the band’s founder, about the new album, the way up in the ladder, evolution of the band’s music and Slayer. 

Hi Nick, it is tremendous having you for this interview for Metal Temple online Magazine. How have you been doing mate?

Hello my friend, nice meeting you, thank you very much for this interview. I have been doing great, quite busy the last days with press for our new album but apart from that, everything runs really smooth, nice and easy, hope the same for you as well. Before we start I would like to send my biggest greetings to your readers and a huge thrashing hello to your audience.

Thank you very much mate for the kind gesture.

Let’s begin. After three years of studio silence, the Suicidal Angels terror squad is back to tell the evil tale with “Years of Aggression”, continuing your allegiance with NoiseArt Records. So what are we up against this time around? Perhaps an even harsher reality or a crude awakening?

Indeed, has been 3 years, the band has been really busy with the promotion of the previous album. We have done around 5 European tours for the promotion, plus the festivals and all the rest. We needed to find some time and jump in the rehearsal room in order to start practicing the new songs. “Years of Aggression”, as an album title refers to the modern world and to where we are living nowadays, it refers to the modern lack of respect. People have lost their respect to each other, everyone is in tense for no reason, for no real reason! Also, “Years of Aggression” has another meaning as well. It describes the existence of the band so far, from the very beginning till nowadays. It’s been a rough ride but the best are yet to come!

How do you feel about the album once it is up and about? What was your vision for how it would sound and portrayed?

For us, on every album, we want to evolve and move forward our music first and us as musicians also. There was no certain vision, we only knew and wanted to do something different compared to all our previous works. We wanted to search deeper within our perspective on the music that we love and that we serve. And indeed I believe we made it. This album consists of 9 songs which all are different between them but they are all under the thrash metal umbrella.

Do you believe that your songwriting improved with “Years of Aggression”? Did you deliver that extra punch in order to gather more people in your circle pit?

As I mentioned before, we want to move on a little bit more and more with our music, on every album. I think it will sound as a cliche but it is the best album we ever did. I don’t underestimate our previous works, not at all, but I believe that this one has something that has a bit more inner touch, I don't know how to explain it exactly. Sometimes magic happens, can’t be easily explained. So far we have received great feedback and as it seems the circle pits will grow wider and more violent!

As the first official video of the album, you chose “Born Of Hate”. Quite a strong title, as any means to keep people tuned in to the constant heeds you have been spreading all these years. What was behind the decision for it to become a video? How is this song special for you?

We decided to have this song as the first single, because it is thrash, it is fast but on the same way it is a bit more melodic than our common songs haha. It has a lot of guitar work and quite a different arrangement that we usually do, so since we made something like that, we decided to throw it first, as the first single. Risky? Maybe, but we don’t belong on the safe side…

In terms of sound, once again you guys nailed it with an amazing show of force, and with the crew of Lindgren and Bogren, as mastering and mixing, you have to be proud. What is your impression?

It was the first time that we worked with that team to be honest, the “Fascination Street Studio” team. It was an amazing experience, they are both incredible professionals and really nice people as well. The most important is the fact that when they got the tracks and especially Jens who did the mix, he understood that this is a thrash metal album overall, but the songs themselves, they need extra attention on the mix in order to manage and present its song’s character and attitude. That's a lot of work on the details of the mix of every song, I don't want to get into the technical stuff, makes no sense, but at the end of the day, he did an incredible mix, we are absolutely satisfied and happy with the result.

Which of the album’s songs is your foremost effort made? That one tune that can’t leave your ears, waking you up in sweat at night? Please elaborate

Let me tell you something. When being in the process of composing or recording, you wake up in sweat every night. You can’t easily separate one track from the other, because you see the whole process as one thing. Of course there are parts that make you think a bit deeper and more, but actually it is a process that needs attention, focus and a tremendous amount of mental work.

You have no idea how honest that answer felt Nick, I understand your point of view on that.

I have always noticed Suicidal Angels as the next in line Slayer, not a mimic yet a version that took the American juggernaut’s form of music into a parallel reality. Lately, you performed with Slayer in one of their last shows of their career. How was it for you to take part in such a massive goodbye party?

Thank you very much for your nice comments, this is something really honorable to hear, indeed it is. Slayer of course they are our main influence, they are the reason why I started playing thrash metal music. On the latest press period, there have been quite a few journalists that they share the same opinion as you and I must admit that we are honored and thank you all from the depths of our souls.

It was a unique experience, it was an evening that I will not easily forget, no matter how many years will pass. As I told you they are the reason why I play thrash metal and I couldn't easily comprehend that they are indeed in their last moments of their career. I couldn’t exactly process that in my mind…But when they will be gone, we will all realise that it was it, a really weird feeling.

Overall, do you really believe that Slayer, which partially defined Thrash Metal, is actually retiring or is it merely a publicity stunt that was made by other supposedly retiring bands of early ages?

I have no clue on that. If a musician wants to retire, in my opinion, that’s what he should do. It is music, it goes together with passion. If you can't do it anymore or don't want to do it anymore, nobody should force you. Because the empire you built, it will remain solid and with dignity. If they force you to return, then it loses something of its past glory!

Playing old school oriented music in a modernized Metal scene is a thing of passion, at least in my bill. Do you believe that passion triumphs over the market or is it the other way around?

I totally agree that it is a thing of passion but the last years thrash metal re-conquered its throne in to the metal music scene. Ok, some years back it was a “museum” music…that’s when we started also, hahaha. But no matter what you do with true passion, along with a bit of luck, you will succeed. But you need to truly believe it and apart from that, to be able to do all the necessary sacrifices that your dream needs, and I mean serious sacrifices. Passion doesn’t only go alongside music. Passion goes hand in hand with all those that they are willing to risk everything in order to try and make their dream come true!

Which bands of the last decade have you been listening to? Are there newcomers which are in stored for a bright future? Maybe to become the next Metal gods?

The last decade I have been discovering a lot of bands, new bands or older bands that I didn't know existed. It has been a really busy year and with tons of new music that I wasn't familiar with. I was surprised and excited, listening to all these people that I didn't know before, doing their thing, inspiring the audience. There are a lot of good bands out there who can carry on the spirit and the greatness of metal but it needs effort. It needs effort, it needs sacrifices, it needs touring, playing concerts all the time, creating new albums, generally needs to be productive in order to accomplish the goal. Hard work and dedication can lead and make your dream come true.

As a member of sheer aggression, I have to ask you this. It has been told that Heavy Metal music is supposed to calm people, when you think of it, it sounds preposterous right? Aren’t we supposed to be rip & tear all the way? Does it actually calm you down?

Heavy metal music unites people. Heavy metal music “brings peace” among equals no matter where they come from. Heavy metal music makes us think a bit deeper and if necessary then we will act and we will act hard! But if need to strike, you need unity, you need to know your shit, you need to know what you are doing and why are you doing it for. Heavy metal is our way of living against all those who suck “anything they find” in order to achieve their goals. No we aren’t like you and we Do.It.Versus.Anyone ( D.I.V.A )

Now I see which song do you prefer most from the album haha… just kidding. An excellent song nonetheless

How do you intend to celebrate “Years Of Aggression”? Festivals? Tours I assume? Where can people see you?

This summer we celebrated the release of our new album with our exclusive appearance at the Party San festival in Germany and as soon as the album is out we will follow with some news concerning the future touring activities. Stay tuned, news are to come!

Nick, I wish you thank you for the interview. Already bashed through the new album and I am loving it. Continue to go strong without mercy. Hailz!

Thank you very much my friend for this interview, thank you very much for your time. Before we say goodbye, I would like to thank your readers for their unconditional support, never surrender, never kneel, we were, we are the fire and still burn!

The pleasure was all mine Nick, thank you again!



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