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FUROR GALLICO: Seminal Debut from Italian folk metal band!

Interview with vocalist/guitarist Stefano (Ste) of Furor Gallico by Vera in October 2011

A strong debut album that instantly struck me came blowing from the peninsula of Italy. Even there, people are more aware of their roots, history and the charms of folk music these days. Mix this with their metal heart and you’ll get a proper idea of Furor Gallico. We wanted to know more about this intriguing band and sent some questions to them. Founding member guitarist Stefano (Ste.) gives us a proper introduction to the seminal eight-piece collective.

The band was founded in 2007 by an exceptional team: you, guitarist Stefano and harpist (!) Becky. How did you meet and can you tell a bit more about those early days?
Hi everybody and thank you for your interest in Furor Gallico. In 2007, me (Stefano) and Becky met in a Celtic Forum on the web; we had the same passion for Celtic culture and metal music and so we met face to face and decided to form a Celtic Metal Band. We started to search for the musicians we need and in a little time Furor Gallico was born. We have been really lucky because we find early all the members and each of us became a member of a family because we became great friends even outside the band.

What (or which bands/musicians) can be seen as an influence on your music when starting?
Each of us has a different musical background; for that reason we don’t have a particular band or musician that influenced us, but we take inspiration out of many different kinds of music: Black, Death and Prog Metal; Celtic and traditional music. In my opinion it’s important not to take inspiration from one or two bands because the risk is to create a “clone-band” and this shouldn’t be the real goal for a musician.

Can you explain the band name Furor Gallico and the reason you have chosen it?
Furor Gallico was the name given by Giulio Cesare to the extreme fury that Celtic warriors had during the battles. We decided to name the band with this Italian name to evidence our provenience and our roots.

In despite of being a self-release at that time, your debut made you winner of best folk metal band in 2010 in Metal Did this result in anything positive for the band?
Of course yes. We’ve been really proud when we read that review; obviously it’s a great satisfaction and maybe it gave us a little help to get our contract with Massacre Records and overall it’s a big stimulation to create something better for our next album.

After the demo ‘390 BC The Glorious Dawn’, you started to play gigs. Can you tell a bit more about these live experiences so far and the bands you shared the stage with?
I think if you have watched one of our first live shows, maybe you’d considered it as a sort of a tragic-comic show, eheheh... it’s really hard to bring on the stage an eight member band and mix metal and acoustic instruments. Anyway, we had our experience and time after time we created our show and we shared the stage with band like Skyclad, Haggard, Eluveitie, Finntroll, Equilibrium, Stratovarius, Vision Divine and more.
We still have a lot of thing to learn to have a perfect live show, but meanwhile we’re doing our best to let our fans have fun and to give them the best concert we can play.

Who are the main composers of the band and please give us insight in the writing process of the debut album?
In Furor Gallico there are no main composers. Everybody propose their own ideas for each song. Usually someone propose a riff or a melody and everybody work on these ideas all together. As I said before, we’re like a family and we like to discuss (and arguing) for all our stuff.

Vocalist Davide Cicalese is very multifarious with his voice. Can you tell something about his background and influences? How did you find him?
Davide’s main influences are brutal death, black metal and Italian rock. Maybe you’ll not believe it, but he started to sing in 2007, when he became a Furor Gallico. He takes lessons and we scold him every day to improve his performance and now I think he is a great singer and front man (even if we continue to scold him eheheh).

Who writes the lyrics and can you give more details about the lyrics on this album? Is there a common theme or a text you want to tell more about?
The main lyrics author is Becky, some songs are written by me or Davide, but almost all are by Becky. Our lyrics usually talk about Italian History and legends or about nature; for instance ‘Medhelan’ speaks about the foundation of Milan by the Druid Belloveso; ‘La Caccia Morta’ is about an ancient hunt legend from Bergamo.

One of the strengths of the album is its diversity. The listener always keeps focused for that reason. Is there a certain reason for this opulence of atmospheres?
As I said before, each of us compose our songs; for this reason in some songs my influence is stronger; in other songs could be stronger Luca’s or Laura’s or Becky’s influences and the result is this diversity you’ve mentioned. This is the only way to feel our songs. Maybe someone could agree or disagree, but this is our philosophy.

The album was firstly self-released, but in 2011 you got signed by Massacre. I think that is a proper way to get known abroad. Did you experience an increase of outlandish interest from then on?
Sure... Massacre Records is doing a great job with the promotion and we get many new fans from different countries. We hope this trend will increase in the time.

And since the album has been out for a while now: what are the reactions so far?
The reactions are wonderful. Many people like our music more than we awaited it; we had many good reviews on the web... of course we can’t please everyone and we received also some bad critics, but good opinions are very more than bad ones.

Where did you record the album? I found out it is self-produced, so there must be a technical wizard/genius among you…
We recorded our album in the home-studio of our ex flautist Merogaisus. He spent a lot of time in recording session, mixing and mastering, but the matter of fact is that he made a really professional work and his help has been indispensable for us.

What are the plans for playing live? Is it possible to embark for a larger tour? Isn’t it more complex with eight musicians?
We’re playing several concerts in Italy and Germany at the moment; in the past we even played in Austria and Switzerland. Of course it is really hard to manage our gigs if you think that we don’t have any booking agency or manager. We manage our concerts by ourselves and it’s quite improbable to organize a larger tour for now, anyway we’re trying to do our best to bring our music all over the Europe!!!

Did you ever consider going on the road with four/five people, using DAT Tapes or so?
It would be impossible for us; as I said before, we’re like a family and we can’t leave anybody at home. Then if you think from the point of view of the fans, if I go to a concert and I see a band that plays with DAT Tapes, I’d feel like it would be a joke. We want to play a live show, otherwise it would be the same to put the CD in the stereo and have a “fake concert”

I often hear that Italian bands better find tour support abroad than in their own country. Do you have this problem as well?
Yes, it’s quite true; when we had our gigs abroad, it was always full of people who were having fun. There’s a great support in Europe. In Italy it is harder to get that kind of situation, I don’t know why, but Italians are very lazy. Anyway I think we’re really lucky as band, because many people come to our concerts, even in Italy. Folk Metal is very supported music even in our country and this is great for us.

What bands would you love to tour with?
I don’t know, we’ve just played with many important bands, I think it’s not really important who you play with, but the point is that it would be great to have more Folk Metal Festivals because on that concerts you can feel a cool atmosphere you can’t find anywhere else!!!

Are there plans for a video?
Not for now, but I think we’ll get it after the second album.

The artwork was done by Kris Verwimp and he is from Belgium, just like me. How did you get to know him and please tell us about this cooperation?
We knew him because he made a lot of artwork and we liked his style; thus we contacted him and he was enthusiastic of our music. Kris is a very nice person; he drew exactly what we wanted!!!! Thank you Kris!!

What are the plans for the near future? Do you already think about a second album? Do you have to start from scratch or are there any ideas left?
We’ve just composed several new songs. We’ve a lot of material to develop. I don’t know when the new album will be published, but I can tell you that you’ll find the classical “Furor Gallico style”, but there will be something new in our sound.

Is someone of you (still) involved in other bands and/or projects?
Our drummer Simo plays in the Brutal Death Metal band Bastard Saints; he’s the only one who still have different projects outside Furor Gallico, but Becky played in Folkstone and Folkearth; Laura played in Folkearth and everybody play in other smaller bands.

If I forgot to cover anything, feel free to add it here and/or some final words from the Italian basement…
What can I say? Thank you for your interview and your support. Horns up to all the staff and all the readers.
You can find our news and our gigs on our website or MySpace page:


Geplaatst door Vera op maandag 17 oktober 2011 - 22:40:09
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