Guitarist and mastermind Chris Petersen took some time to kindly answer my questions regarding the debut release of CELLADOR. |
You all are quite young, but technically skilled - do you do anything besides practising and rehearsing?
Chris: Well recently with the release of our record and touring we have had not time for anything else but the band, but yea we have personal lives outside of the band hahaha. During the downtime we have other things going on. I am taking classes in a University for example. Also Bill Hudson is also a music teacher and has many students, and also has seperate projects including his project The Supremacy including members or ex-members of Helloween, Firewind, Aquaria, After Forever, etc.
What would you say can listeners expect from your first album?
Chris: The listeners and readers here can expect a full out relentless assault of speed metal beginning to end on our debut album ENTER DECEPTION. We went balls out on this record and wanted to make every song catchy and memorable, thrashy, and overall fun for us to both play and listen to. We didn't want to include any boring ballads or slow droning epics, no fantasy lyrics and no cheesy effects and fake studio crap on our production. This album was made by ourselves devoted metalheads for other metalheads, and not by old veteran out of touch guys who don't keep up or appreciate the scene. On this record we took all our favorite elements of metal genres and added them to the power metal mix to create an intense and uplifting record.
Judging from your musical style, there are a lot of possible idols in European Speed/Power Metal. Who would you name as your most important influences?
Chris: Our biggest influences in CELLADOR came from a combination of Power metal and thrash. We were largely influenced by bands like Helloween, Edguy, Iron Maiden, Rainbow, Megadeth, Metallica, Testament, Lost Horizon, etc. We are all huge fans of the European metal scene, in fact we hardly listen to any newer American metal bands at all.
What made you play this rather "old" European style instead of the omni-present (especially in the USA, I think) Metalcore or something?
Chris: European metal is what we naturally got into and so likewise we're going to play what we like to hear rather than give in to some trend thats already completely oversaturated anyway. In the USA there are hardly any power metal bands, hardly any metal bands with singers who sing clean even. What we play is actually new to alot of the kids in our country and that was one of the reasons we wanted to put together a band like CELLADOR anyway, to show more people in the USA this kind of music. We stick strong to our roots and true ambitions and tastes, we have no desire to become a part of scene here if its a type of music we don't like and even if it alienates us from the scenes than so be it.
How are your songs written/assembled overall?
Chris: I wrote all the music and lyrics for ENTER DECEPTION aside from the song "A Sign Far Beyond" which was co-written by myself and our singer Michael Gremio. Generally I write most of the songs by myself in my own personal studio area. I come up with riffs or ideas, sometimes at home and sometimes at rehearsel, and then I take the ideas and record a rough version of a new song with programmed drums and me playing all the instruments. I then go back and listen to it over and over changing up parts and adding complexity. Once I have the music completed I go back and think of vocal melodies on guitar. Once I have some good vocal melodies I begin writing the lyrics. Once I have a completed demo song with vocal melodies I take it to the rest of the band and get their feedback and input on it. Once everyone agrees on the song we practice it together as a band until we have it really tight and thats about it!
Do you follow a common topic in the lyrics? What inspires you?
Chris: Generally the lyrics on ENTER DECEPTION touch on topics like self-empowerment, individualism, integrity, lots of uplifting stuff that maybe the listeners can relate to and understand. Alot of the lyrics really come from the mindset of all of us in the band, with us playing power metal in the USA and being totally out there and out of place in the American metal scene we remain strong willed and independent just playing this type of music instead of giving in to bandwagons or trends over on this side of the world, and I think some of the lyrics talk especially about that.
Don't you think 'No Chances Lost' might be a little too cheesy?
Chris: It definitely is cheesy, but we love cheesy music so its all good. We love happy sounding choruses with high pitch vocals and over the top guitar playing, we like keeping things fun while not taking ourselves too seriously.
You already played with varius well-known acts from other (sub-)genres. How did the audiences appreciate your style so much different from the headliner's?
Chris: Its been great so far. Originally when the band first started playing shows we were wondering how the kids from all these other scenes would react, but amazingly its been almost universally great. For us as a band its absolutely important that we would be able to play with bands of other styles like metalcore, death metal, etc. because there is no power metal scene in the USA at all and so in order to survive as a band we would have to appeal to kids from other scenes. We never wanted to be known or apart of just the traditional power metal scene, for our location that would be a ridiculous thing to do. We have no problem at all with it, in fact we love it because we're able to bridge kids who never liked power metal in the past into the style.
What do the plans for the next album look like?
Chris: We've learned so many things since making our first album, we actually are incredibly excited to get started on new stuff. We already had a lot of leftover material that didn't make it onto ENTER DECEPTION due to lack of space and time, and so the last couple months we spent tightening up and enhancing these leftover songs to make them even better for the next time around. I think also on the next album its possible that we'll have more contributions from other members of the band in the songs. On ENTER DECEPTION I wrote pretty much the songs and lyrics but Bill and Mike already have some new material of their own they are working on that is sounding really amazing.
Congratulations for this debut, it surely is a special release in today's market.
Chris: Many thanks from all of us in CELLADOR to bleeding webzine for giving our band the chance to be exposed and publicized via this interview. I encourage all readers to check out CELLADOR's debut album ENTER DECEPTION, an intense bombastic record with elements meant for metalheads of all styles. Thanks again and keep it metal!
Good luck in the future, thank you and have fun touring (2006/2007, right?)!
Chris: Tons of fun so far!! Lots of stories for next time haha