<< archive


There is a kind of bands you appreciate from the first second on - LUNARSEA is one of these hearty issues for me. The debut Hydrodynamic Wave took me by storm, the second work Route Code Selector manifested the group’s extraordinary approach concerning Melodic Death Metal. A few weeks ago, the third effort Hundred Light Years detonated to win me over completely. As a consequence, it is a pleasure for me to do this interview with guitarist Fabiano Romagnoli.

Leo: Buonasera Fabiano! I really like your latest work Hundred Light Years because of the very fresh and diverse approach to Melodic Death Metal. How would you describe the specialness of LUNARSEA?
Fabiano Romagnoli:
Hi Leo, and thanks for the opportunity to be interviewed for Nocturnal Hall webzine. Well, I’m a musician grown up with progressive metal and power metal, but also with guitar heroes such as Steve Vai, John Petrucci, Vinnie Moore and Patrick Rondat. Basically, when I start to write new songs for LUNARSEA, I’m inspired by those bands and musicians. That’s why most of our albums need several spins before they get appreciated. We’re not that kind of band that you listen just one time and you say “that’s great”. Probably our music gets the opposite response. We like to mix riffs, melody, different elements and we know that this could be hard to be understood at first listening. But we also know that our album could be in front row for years and years, because several elements are in, and probably you never will be tired of our songs within a short time.

Leo: Let’s dive deeper into Hundred Light Years. Ianus seems to be a very special song; I like the special “mirror-print” of the lyrics in the booklet. Is the lyrical and visual aspect as important as the music?
Well, it’s important as the music. Cristian Antolini (the bass player) is the responsible for all lyrics and concept. Hundred Light Years got great lyrics inside, I hope people take time to read the lyrics, not just listen to the music.

Leo: Apart from very fast sequences, I also appreciate the more epic touch of the track As Seaweed. The multilayer vocals fit in perfectly and the listener can expect many turns. How many musicians work on this kind of complicated build-up?
We choose those special guests we know how they work. So, basically, when a song is finished, we give them to those musicians saying what we like to be included as piano, violin etc. etc. And the game is done. If you’re a good musician, you know how to play the right mood of any songs, without recording it thousand times.

Leo: This alternating sound could be too much for the “you-tube-generation” - do you think LUNARSEA’s music takes some time to unfold?
No, I don’t. We’re an underground band, and after three albums and 10 years activity, we still remain underground. Our songs are not easy listening, we know that, but we like to play in that way, and we never change this. We don’t like to make one hit single for an album. If it came out during writing process is good, if not, doesn’t matter.

Leo: You have special guests on the album. How did it come to the collaborations?
Special guest on Hundred Light Years are: Martin Minor (German producer), Emanuele Casali (DGM-Astra), Tim Charles (Ne Obliviscaris), Michael Shulmann (Israeli violinist, who recorded an alternate violin solo on Aphelion Point, that we hope to come out for Japanese market soon). We don’t choose great known performers....just good musicians from underground. It was quite easy to try to reach some great special guest...but we’re not a band that would like to get more fans cause in our album plays this or that musician.

Leo: The guitar work is outstanding on all three albums, your drummer plays many different paces a song – is it just too boring for you to play straight?
Right Leo. I don’t like to play power chords...after some seconds of every riff I just say “too boring to play, here we need some strange riffs to put inside”. And this will be done. I think if you like guitar musicians, you will like the guitar work on every album. On Hydrodynamic Wave, I played all guitars, for Route Code Selector we get Emiliano Pacioni on guitar too. Regarding the drummer, probably on every album you notice a different style, that’s why we get a different drummer for every album :) Probably, with the new album we will play a little slower. We have push too much on HLY.

Leo: Are there some guitarists that inspired you?
First of all Steve Vai! And John Petrucci, Vinnie Moore, Patrick Rondat, Joe Satriani. I’ve done a solo album in 2001, all instrumental; hope one day to make a new one in future.

Leo: I assume that you prefer some songs on the album; which ones do you like best to listen best, which ones are your faves to play live?
My favorite song of HLY is Ephemeris 1679. It’s a song that after recording, I don’t like very much (that’s why we put it as last). But, after several spins, I really love it. It’s the song that I don’t stop to play in my i-pod. Same stuff for Next And Future. But live, the best ones are 3 Pieces Of Mosaic, Ianus and Sonic Depth Finder. Fast songs, not so hard to play and with a good mood on stage.

Leo: How about the situation for Melodic (Death) Metal in Italy these days?
In Italy we don’t have a melodic death metal scene. It’s quite strange, cause we’re a land of melody music, Latin music, so we have to be the first who prefer to play and listen melodic metal. But the most appreciated genre in Italy right now is brutal/grind. I say now, cause 10 years ago was power metal and progressive. We will see in future what will happen.

Leo: Do you play many live shows? Is it easy for you as a band to get slots for concerts?
Wow, that’s a hard question! No, not at all. We always get thousands of problems for playing live. I don’t know why, but it’s really hard for us to play live, from small gigs, to support bigger acts. Organizers don’t give a shit if you are on the way from more than 10 years and you have done several albums. We’re not that kind of band that goes to that people and offer beers and stuff like that, we just contact them saying we’re are LUNARSEA...we would like to play here and there...this is what we have done till now...if you’re interested in our music here are our contacts. We just do this. However we have done several live during our activity, and have supported bands like Dark Tranquillity, Sinister, Darkane, Impaled Nazarene, Rage, Orphaned Land, Obscura, Leave’s Eyes etc. etc.

Leo: Any chance to see you on tour or festivals this year?
Not right now. We will play on September in Rome supporting Belphegor and make the release party of HLY in Florence at the end of September together with Stormlord. We will see new year if we could arrange something.

Leo: What about your relation to the internet? Do you sell more “physical” copies or downloads?
We sell several copies of HLY during pre-release. I could say 50% was physical and 50% as download. Probably new fans get the download, and those ones who already know us prefer to buy the physical copy. Metal is underground, so people always like to have a physical copy of a CD that they like.

Leo: Where can we get CDs and merchandise of LUNARSEA?
You could grab copies of our album in our official store: lunarsea.bigcartel.com, Lunarsea.bandcamp.com or thru major online distribution stores (iTunes, spotify, amazon mp3, google play etc. etc.)

Leo: LUNARSEA exists for ten years now, what was the reason for you to form a Death Metal band a decade ago? Do you plan some specials to celebrate this jubilee?
Was a great night of 2003 when I was with Cristian (the bass player) in a famous rock club in Rome, and we just say “Hey man, why we don’t set-up a band?” After that the day after we were directly into the writing process and the very first song came out with LUNARSEA monicker was Evolution Plan.txt (it still remains one of my favorites till now). We will see Leo what we will set-up for the jubilee, in the meantime we will continue to set-up some show till the end of 2013.

Leo: Let’s risk a view to future – how should the world look like for LUNARSEA in ten years?
Surely I will be a fucking old man of 45 years still playing guitars as a teenager. After that, if we still have LUNARSEA on our life, we will play different music style. You know, it’s hard to continue to play death metal within the next 10 years. Probably we will make some kind of experiment in future. We will see…

Leo: Mille grazie per rispondere! Thanks a lot for your time - I hope to see you live on stage someday!
That’s true Leo. Thanks for this interview and supporting us!


06/2013 © Leo Seebauer • Lunarsea