February 2005 - NIGHTSTALKER
The music scene goes up and down all the time, and right now there's a great desire for the people to go out, and have fun, and listen to all kinds of heavy rock. They're not worried anymore about their haircuts, or being uniformed or confined into any set politics or roles. People want to get back into what heavy rock was all about in the first place, and that was having a good time and creating their own standards. Well, there's still a politic there, but you don't have to write it into the lyrics. You just live it and NIGHTSTALKER are the next perfect example for it. Their latest album "Just A Burn" is more than just a solid 70's heavy psychedelic rock show - no, it's a high-quality release due to the amount of killer hooks and an overdose of authentic attitude. Reason enough to talk to founding member Argy about the magic and future of his amazing band.
Hello guys; first question: were you in any groups before NIGHTSTALKER?
Hi. Yes we were in other groups. Tolis, the guitar player, played in the early 90's in a thrash metal band called Epidemic. He played also with me in the mid-90's on a project called 'Superdoz'. I also used to play in a band called 'The Ripper' from 84 to 88. Andreas, the bass player, used to play in numerous bands. Now he is playing for another band too, called Rotting Christ.
How did you settle on NIGHTSTALKER as a name? Is it based on the semi-famous serial killer Richard Ramirez?
We first named the band NIGHTSTALKER because we liked how it sounds. We found out afterwards that Ramirez was a nightstalker.
Can you remember what you were playing when you first started? Own material or cover versions?
From the beginning we were trying to play our own material. Of course, there was many cover versions that we have played (Motorhead-"Iron Horse", Alice Cooper-"Eighteen", Bob Marley-"I shot the Sheriff" etc.) but we prefer playing our own stuff.
Your latest release "Just A Burn" became the soundtrack to my life for the last weeks and a couple things about this album immediately grabbed me, especially the high quantity of addictive hooklines. Are there any tracks on the album you're particularly proud of?
I love the "Voodoo U Do" song and, of course, I like a lot the rest tracks of the record, but the song I am really proud of is "Line".
To be honest, among the eleven included cuts is no average one or to use god-given talent ;-)! How important was it for you to create such a high-quality album?
Since we got into the studio to record the tracks, we were pretty sure of what was going to come out. We had almost a year of pre-production and in the studio we focused on the mood of the record.
I think that some listeners will compare your sound with mid-period Monster Magnet, and there are definitely some similarities to this band. But your sound is far away from being just a rip-off, and I guess you're influenced by the same bands as The Stooges, Cactus, Captain Beyond and Hawkwind f.e.. What would you say to that statement?
Our music basically is influenced by 70's rock. I think a listener will not compare us just with Monster Magnet. I think he will compare us with more bands similar to stoner rock sound and that's because all of us we have common influences. We like rock sound.
After reading the lyrics it's obvious that you like to consume natural psycho-active substances. Do you want to make any comments about psychedelic drugs?
I think that marijuana should be legal everywhere.
What kind of life-style do you life? Sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll or the total opposite?
Me, I 'm the sex drugs and rock 'n' roll type of guy, Tolis stands in the middle and Andreas is the opposite.
Where do you see your music, where do you want it to go?
There is nothing specific. Our music expresses what we are and how we feel. We just want keep it the same.
The cd version has been released on Mad Prophet Records, but you've also signed with Berlin-based Nasoni Records for the vinyl edition of "Just A Burn". Why have you also signed with Nasoni and when will the vinyl version see the light of day?
We wanted 'Just a Burn' on a vinyl edition although we are living in the cd's days. We also like the vinyl as an object. The cause we signed with Nasoni Records was simple. It's a company doing mostly vinyl releases and we liked that. Also they liked our music and we had a nice deal. The vinyl will get out in December.
What is your most memorable gig?
That was back in 1994 when we played with THE RAMONES. I will never forget that gig as far as I live. Although there are many gigs that I can ever forget.
Can we expect a NIGHTSTALKER tour here in Germany in 2005?
We are working up on a tour in Germany, but nothing's for sure. We would love playing in Germany.
Greece has a strong heavy metal community, but I have no idea what's going on in the Greek heavy psych rock field. Well, in the early 70's there were the legendary Socrates Drank The Conium, but what about today? Please, expand my musical horizon!
There aren't many Greek bands well-known outside Greece. There are just few. You can count them on your one hand's fingers. Definitely every local band well-known or not doing its best. We also have to notice that there aren't many willing record companies in Greece to release recordings of this kind of music. So, everyone is forced to look for a way.
Do you think there's an interest for 70's oriented heavy psych rock in Greece or are the younger people more interested in the musical mainstream like punk or metal f.e.?
There is an interest at this kind of music, but just like takes place everywhere else, mainstream commercial music is much more attractive for younger people.
For this time, I have no more questions. All the best for the upcoming new year 2005!!! Thanks a lot!!!