The rhythm and the atmosphere of London

Concrete Age

We have become good friends with this young, talented, ambitious musician... I saw how my colleague introduced him in our Facebook community, gave a listen to a few songs and immediately invited his band to participate in our  On Stage In MHF contest for online band promotion.

So, a little bit more public chat with Ilya Morozov, the founder, songwriter, guitarist and vocalist of Russian/British ethno/thrash/death metal band Concrete Age, happened for Metal On Loud Magazine.

Hi, Ilya! I know that many of our readers have become Concrete Age fans, since we introduced your band in METALHEADS FOREVER community and our  On Stage contest...What do you expect from fans? How does the band usually gain fans?

Well we try to work in two directions. Our facebook page is quite young. So I can say that we started to promote it at the beggining of this year. Usually fans find us via YouTube. It is a very interesting phenomenon cause we don`t have strong promotion at present in the UK. Most people subscribe themselves. We have a good number of fans who were invited from Metal on loud as well and i would like to thank you!

Your music style is unique...Fusion of ethno, death and thrash metal. How was the idea of this fusion born? Why have you merged these metal subgenres, not others?

I was born in a really beautiful region in Russia. We have a lot of mountains there, fairy forests, blue rivers... I am a huge fan of nature and different cultures. When I was 20  New age music became my passion. But as you know metal music is in my blood. So I started to think about how I could mix these 2 genres. It was the begining of Concrete Age. Before that I had long-term experience with folk music. But to be honest folk metal is too mainstream for me.

Give a short characteristic to your band. Do you have any slogan, motto, credo, mission or whatever?

Pure ethnic metal

Some of the band members are absolutely new in the band...can you tell us more about the newcomers?

With a big pleasure. When i moved to England my former band members had to stay in Russia. Actually it happened when I moved to Moscow. There were thousands of  reasons why those guys couldn't follow me. And i really can understand them. After the first few months of being in London I placed an advert on one of the websites to look for a band. At that moment i didn`t even think about doing any of the Concrete Age stuff.
A couple of days later I got a message from Malinda Ginige, who is the guitarist in our band. He was asking me if I was looking for a band or if I had my own. I said that at the moment I had another plan but I was very keen on bringing my project back to life again. Mal is from Sri Lanka. He is a really good guitar player. I can say that he likes most things that sound difficult and fast (if you know what i mean). I like his determination and the sound.

The most interesting thing happened when I was looking for bass player. I found Jim Rain (James Raymond) on  a website for amature musicians after I thought there was no hope to find a decent musician. He placed an ad as a guitarist who could also play bass guitar. In his ad he mentioned that he was looking for a band to join just for fun, his intentions were not serious and I tried my luck, so I rang him. The day after we spoke he sent me a message saying that he had bought a bass guitar to play with CA, I told him that he was crazy to do that as I had not even heard him play at that point. However, a couple of days later I  was so surprised to hear him play the songs incredibly. I can definitely say that he is one talented musician and is great at music arrangements.

Darcy was our 21st audition for the drummer. To be honest we were not too impressed after we met him for the first time. I was definitely sure I would hold another audition  but Jim advised me to give him another chance and it was a wise decision to do so. After the first month of rehearsals I realised that I got a death machine,real butcher on drums.  His base kick is so loud and tights that we don't even need mics when we rehearse.

As I've heard, you have finished a new album Under A Concrete Sun...what is special about this album? When is official release?

Yes, we have finished the album and at the moment we are looking for a label. When speaking about  the album I can say that it sound more concrete and brutal compared to the previous work. I believe that is due to all of the changes happening in my life and this mood is reflected in the album. The rhythm and the atmosphere of London is the predominant theme. It can be heard throughout the vocal parts and melodies.

I know that musicians hate whining..but what difficulties a comparatively new band meet on their way? How do you overcome obstacles? What helps you?

I think that we face the same issues as other young bands. I can't say that we are amatures but we are quite new in this country. The biggest problem for us is the lack of good feedback and we still don't have a big number of connections who could help in different ways.

What do you love and what don't you like about a modern metal scene?

For me it sounds very boring and not original at all.  I don't like it. Nowadays, it's almost impossible to find a good band which you can download on your playlist, I am definitely an old school metalhead and all of the modern metal music I find these days is more like a parody.

What are your ambitions about? What public do you want to conquer? What bands would you play with? What songs would you write, etc.?

We would like to be heard and we would like to be unique. I want people to not just listen to our music, I really want them to delve into the lyrics as well. In my opinion good music should be a sountrack to overcoming difficulties which we face in our lives. in terms of the bands I would like to collaborate with the first priority would be Vader, Abbath , Fear Factory, Soulfly, Testament, these bands represent the type of music I like.

Imagine yourself in five years. What would you like to achieve?

I would like to achieve what I deserve, no more or less. I will work hard to achieve this goal.

What music do you listen yourself, besides Concrete Age?

I listen to all of the old albums of Vader, I actually quite enjoyed the latest one. I also like listening to Immortal. Speaking about other guys I know that Mal is a big fan of Paul Gilbert, Darcy is very oldschool when it comes to metal music, Jim's music taste varies from Bob Marley to Death.

What is metal music for you?

For me it is something sacred and eternal.

What would you wish to our readers?

I would like to wish that playlists of the readers of Metal On Loud kept being full of fresh and good music!

Thank you, my friend, for spending your time answering Metal On Loud Magazine questions! Our team wish you huge success, realization of all your plans! METAL ON LOUD!

Tania Legrand