The Lion Music roster has a long list of stellar bands, and one of their most respected and impressive is the hot Italian progressive metal act Moonlight Comedy. Their sophomore release Dorothy is a stunning concept piece that is being talked about quite a bit in prog-metal circles, as it's filled with crafty lyrical content, soaring melodies, and complex instrumental virtuosity. Sea of Tranquility Publisher Pete Pardo caught up with guitar wizard Simone Fiorletta to talk about the new album and the bands future plans.
Read on for the full interview!
Sea of Tranquility: Can you give us some history of the band and how you came together?
Simone Fiorletta: Everything begun in September 1998 when we met and all five decided to compose our music. So in the first four years we did two demos and many live shows. After our second demo we were called by some labels, so we began to compose a real album, The Life Inside was released in 2004 for 27 nations by Lion Music. In February of this year 2007, the same Lion Music released Dorothy, our second album, already considered a good work by critics and our fans.
SoT: Moonlight Comedy plays a very exciting and melodic brand of progressive metal-what are some of the influences of the individual band members?
Simone: Let me say that we don't like to be compared to some metal pillars, because according to us Dorothy has its own style (some reviewer has told us we are original and even innovative!); our songs are a fusion of what we love… from Prog to Power, from thrash to heavy. Maybe we are a mix of Dream Theater, Symphony X, Fates Warning, Vanden Plas, Pain Of Salvation… big prog bands but very different among each other. The influences of the individual band members are the same for each of us...Progressive Metal, Heavy Metal, Fusion, and Pop Music as well.
SoT: The new album Dorothy is very strong, with great melodies and tight
instrumental playing. Can you talk a bit about the storyline behind the album and what inspried the lyrics?
Simone: Dorothy is inspired by the famous "Wizard of Oz"; anyway, it's a walk inside a life started three years ago.Dorothy is about the classic teenager question: "What I must be?". Without a guide Dorothy assumes a double personality. Hiding her true emotions of hate and anger toward who surrounds her with a grotesque rabbit mask, she is left to wear out her soul, and finds herself on the the edge of madness. "I was wrong": this is the key to understanding her unstable personality.
SoT: Pretty intense stuff! What are some of your favorite tracks on the CD?
Simone: It's hard for us to have favorite tracks, anyway...maybe "Solar Eclipse", "The Sea And Time Of Mars", "Into Whisper And Desire"...songs that shows the new Moonlight Comedy.
SoT: The production of Dorothy is very crisp-who produced the CD?
Simone: Our producer is Mauro Matteucci. The album was recorded between February and April 2006 at "Legend Digital Studios" in Rome. We like to release our work in a perfect way especially as far as the members band performance is concerned. Then, naturally, we take some time to listen again to everything and decide what to change or not. So we pass to the mixing- Dorothy was mixed in December. After a first layout of the mix, each of us takes a copy of the master to listen to the work in our own hi-fi to note any changes that need to be made. Once convinced of the sound choices, we pass on to the mastering.
SoT: What types of guitars were used on the album?
Simone: I'm a "Jim Reed Guitars" endorser, so...
SoT: An obvious choice then! Has the band played many live shows, and are there touring plans to promote Dorothy?
Simone: We can tell you that there are two tour managers who are working for us. In the near future we have some live shows planned which we would like to concentrate on in September and October. So, stay tuned on www.moonlightcomedy.com or www.simonefiorletta.it for updates on that.
SoT: Moonlight Comedy seems like a perfect band to play at the US festival ProgPower. Have you ever been approached to play this festival?
Simone: Unfortunely we haven't the right friends!!! If you can help us, we would love the chance! (laughs)
SoT: It was a few years between albums for the band. What are the immediate plans for the band, and when will writing begin for another release?
Simone: Our plans are to start to compose our third album, and I can tell you that we'll start to write around the end of May. At the same time we want start to play some select live shows.
SoT: Are there any bands on the current scene that you listen to and admire?
Simone: Of course...Vanden Plas and Symphony X especially!!! Fates Warning, Evergrey and many others.
SoT: Thanks so much and best of luck with the CD and tour!
(Click here to read our review of Dorothy)