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"The way I see this revival going on, is that it slowly fades away. This makes sense because it is a fashion, and as every fashion, it could not last forever. Right?"

Interview with Marios Petropoulo / Dimitris Kartaloglou from Sacral Rage
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 13 September 2018, 11:27 PM

If there is something that has a pain in a neck for plenty of bands decades over decades is how to sound original enough to standout. No just mere playing quality, but material wise, something different. Steinmetal sat down with members of the Greek Heavy / Speed Metal band Sacral Rage, due to their new release “Beyond Celestial Echoes”, in order to understand their side of the story.

Greetings Marios and Dimitris. It is a pleasure having you for this interview. With the upcoming barrage of furious onslaught coming our way generated by your new music, I believe that an “How have you been doing?” is in order. So, how have you been?

Hello Lior and Metal temple. Thank you for this interview. Well, everything’s OK in our camp. We have just finished with the mix/master process of our new album and now we are planning our future moves.

It was almost two months ago that I came to listen to fragments of your debut album in a dear friend’s apartment in Athens, and I can surely say that it blasted mercilessly. So much vigor and intensity, how do you guys keep this motor running?

Thanks for your nice words. Well, there isn’t any secret about this; we are just taking our music pretty seriously and try to deliver our best. We are putting ourselves under a hard self-criticism, so I guess this is transported to the final outcome.

I noticed that you took your time nicely between your debut and sophomore album to be out soon, titled “Beyond Celestial Echoes”, coming out via your label Cruz Del Sur Music. Any particular reason for this gap? Or was it highly important for you to support the debut in a rightful manner?

There are 2 reasons for this. First, as you said, we wanted to promote our previous album in any possible way, so it was our priority to schedule our live appearances, etc. Secondly we wanted to take out time, in order to present something fresh. (Although some of the songs were written about 1.5 year ago.) So a break between these 2 records was necessary.

It is evident from the new album, and also somewhat from the debut, that you are some Sci-Fi diehard fans, which I can easily say that it is a theme that can be quite addictive. Can you elaborate on your various of takes of the theme on the release?

Well, it’s true that it can be a really addictive concept. As we evolved as a band, we knew that something spacy fits us. As the sound of the band evolved, we added many synth sounds as well as the lyrics got more complex and mysterious. I guess the fear and the will to understand the unknown is something that attracts us. Although our songs are under a general concept, we don’t have a concept album in a sense of a solid and continuous story. We speak of strange events, mysterious stories or inexplicable facts, sometimes already happened, sometimes not.

Music wise, it seemed to me that “Beyond Celestial Echoes” is a step forward in your musicianship level. Sometimes I felt as if I was listening to HADES with a shred of HELSTAR, but with enough clarity of Traditional Metal. Do you agree with that perception?

It is a step forward in many levels. The production got better, the musicianship as you said got better and also we added many new elements to our sound. From my point of view, I see things a little bit different since I always believed that the core of our influences are among King diamond, Death, Crimson Glory, or even 70’s acts like Rush but with a bit more modern and fresh twists. The good thing is that people hear many influences in us, a thing that makes our music pretty wide.

How do you find the integration of the intensified music with the album’s main theme?

In general, the sci-fi concept is by itself really weird, mysterious and multilevel. The concepts of space and time are something that you can’t just put in a box. It’s really abstract. Having this in mind we try to simulate it via the melodies the riffs and the uncanny song structures. The way we approach our songs is like we see them as a continuous thing that progresses and morphs as the time passes by. We really never know where a song might take us.

Do you believe that in the future you would be crossing additional thresholds, clinging harder to Progressive Metal?

Hmm, I can’t say. I don’t know. The chances of doing this will be the same as to try to be less complex and easier going. The sure thing is that we’ll try to not repeat ourselves.

Out of curiosity, and I am sure that our readers would be interested in recommendations, which is your favorite tune on the album, and, I know that this question comes in and out, why do you find this song as a standout?

As said before, we put a lot of effort in our songwriting, in order to bring only killer songs throughout the record. So, as you understand, I can’t answer this question. If though the readers would like recommendations, I would tell them to listen to “Beyond Celestial Echoes” while reading the lyrics. It will be an interesting trip.

Have you had the chance playing some of the new material live? If so, what were the responses of the audience?

Yes, we have played some of them during our latest live shows. Although the feedback is great, the thing with our not yet released songs is that it’s a bit hard for someone to groove along, because of their complexity. Sometimes this is a pain in the ass, but it is a dirty job and someone’s got to do it haha.

As a band that could be rendered as stuck in the late 80s, do you think that there is still a revival going on or the other way around? Do you think that old school Metal still has that magnitude as an inspiration as earlier?

As you pointed out, we could be rendered as a band stuck in the 80’s but this has nothing to do with how we see ourselves. We try to bring something new to the table but with clear influences from the past. The way I see this revival going on, is that it slowly fades away. This makes sense because it is a fashion, and as every fashion, it could not last forever. Right? And to answer the last part of your question, No, I don’t believe that the new wave of old school has the same passion as in its earlier years. You can understand this be listening to some of the latest albums that came out. The majority of these sound more or less the same with little traces of originality. There always some exceptions but the general picture is this.

Where can Metalheads see you in the remainder of the year and the next? Are there any festivals booked or a support tour to expect?

We plan to make a release live show here in Athens. We are focused in this, since it will be our first headline show in our hometown. Other than that, we are in contact for some appearances in Europe. Mostly northern Europe. When the time will come, we will make announcements in our FB page regarding future shows.

Guys, I wish to thank you for this interview. Right from the first time I liked what I was hearing and I am glad that the flame is burning bright through your music. Good luck with the new album and support it well

Thanks again Lior for the interview and for your nice words. Cheers!!
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