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Written by Fab   
Friday, 04 July 2008 21:04

- Hey Swordmaster ! Can you present the band ? When & where was it formed ?
Hell-o Fab ! And all Metalheads who read this interview !! It all started with the foundation of a tribute band to Canadian Metal god EXCITER, by CROSSFIRE (Vo/G) in 2002. I’m in the band since it started. After the first gig, we started writing our own songs and changed our drummer for Dragonblaster and guitarist for Nightmare. Then we released our EP “WELCOME TO THE METAL ZONE” in 2004. But after one gig, Nightmare left the band for personal problems and we got Lucifer’s Heritage instead. Then we released our first album “TOKYO FLYING V MASSACRE” on Black-Listed Records on the 6th of June 2006 (that’s to say 6.6.6. !!).
- Musically, what are the bands you feel close to ? I suppose bands like Accept, Iron Maiden, WASP, Exciter have been a huge influence on your music, right ? Are your favourite bands exclusively rooted in the 80’s ?
Of course, we love the bands you listed !! Add to them, Anvil, Judas Priest, Kiss, Manowar, Running Wild, Saxon, Venom, and so on. Yes, the 80’s Metal is all great ! Lots of good bands and good songs. There are tons of 80's Metal albums in my shelf !
- You have released so far two albums.... "Welcome to metal zone" & "Tokyo ..." ...Can you tell us more about them ? Are you pleased with them ? What about the reactions they have received ?
"Welcome To Metal Zone" is our 1st EP with 5 tracks released in 2004. When we rehearsed as the EXCITER tribute band, we created the opening song of the EP "Metal Zone"... this was the origin of HELLHOUND. The 5 tunes on the EP were harshly created as our 1st impulses. Actually, we finished all the recording processes within 12 hours.
We released the "Tokyo Flying V Massacre" album via Black-listed Records in 2006. After the release of the "Welcome To Metal Zone" EP, we toured Japan and were sure there were many fans being thirsty for traditional Metal music. So we made the "Tokyo Flying V Massacre" album as a much stronger Heavy Metal in the world. We grew up with listening to various styles of Heavy Metal, so we made an album, not only with thrash/speed metal tunes but also with rock parts, in various styles. This is an album to pay our respects to the great 80's Heavy Metal we grew up with.
We got good responses about these albums from Metal fans from all over the world, as well from the ones in Japan. We are really happy!!
- Well, it is pretty difficult for us, outside Japan, to get those albums… Can you give us the reason and what happened with Uk based distributor Majestic Rock ? They were supposed to distribute your albums in Europe, right ?
Yes, they supported us during the first year only. Let’s see... ok, I’m gonna try to reply with calm and speak in measured words. End of the last year, They stopped all their activities suddenly. We tried to
make a contact with them some times, but they did not reply.... Regretfully, the contract between them and us is still alive. But now, we are trying to terminate the contracts. Unfortunately, we can't send out our album overseas until the termination. We assume this problem is not only for us. Some Japanese bands making contracts with Majestic Rock are having the same problem.
- So I know you're currently trying to get the rights on the worldwide distribution, can we hope having the chance to catch those albums soon ?
As I previously mentioned, as for "Tokyo Flying V Massacre", it needs to take another while....However, our contract with Majestic Rock is for the "Tokyo Flying V Massacre" album only. "Welcome To Metal Zone" EP is no problem. If we receive any offers from any good label, we can re-release it shortly! If you want to get "Tokyo Flying V Massacre" album, please come to CD stores in Japan (Sorry, Fab!), the contracts with Majestic Rock are not valid for CD stores in Japan.
- Ok, your last album "Tokyo..." is now two-years old...Have you now new material ready for a new album ? When can we expect this new album to be released ? What about its content & the evolution ? Still Heavy & Loud as hell or will there be some changes, different touches ?
We are halfway in the process of writing for the next album! It will be out in Summer/Autumn. Of course, They are Heavy & Loud 'cause WE’RE HEAVY METAL WARRIORS, you know ! I assume, the atmosphere of the next albums will be between "Welcome To Metal Zone" and "Tokyo Flying Massacre". Changes on our music style are not necessary. We play & keep them all HEAVY METAL !!
- Are you playing a lot live in your country ? Is it easy for a metal band to get live-dates ? What about the crowd at your shows ? I suppose this is crazy, your music really kicks ass, yeah !
Yes, we were playing 1-2 show(s) a month somewhere in Japan. We are supported by crazy Metal heads. They are really great!! We are grateful to them. Some of our performance footages can be found and seen on You Tube. In Tokyo, Metal gigs are held anywhere in every weekend. You can easily find their schedule. Generally approx 100 fans come to the venues. I think young fans are
increasing recently. They are not stiff in their heads. I hope they listen to many cool Metal before their brains turn to stiff ones.
- Speaking of live performance, you’re part of the KEEP IT TRUE 11 ? How has it been possible ? How do you feel about this event ? Personally, I really can’t wait to meet you there, this will be awesome, yeah ;-)
Thanks !! I knew KEEP IT TRUE before and thought "if I could have an opportunity to go to Germany, I would like to experience it!" just as a metal fan. So I couldn't believe the offer from the KIT at first ! This will be the 1st show outside Japan for us. I can't imagine how the reaction will be, but we want to get all our powers together, as METAL SAMURAIS from Japan. And of course, we are very excited to check the other bands on this same KIT stage !
- Any plans for you to play more in Europe or USA maybe ?
Unfortunately, we don't have any other plans. We will stay in Germany just for a short while and have to come back to Japan right after because we have fuckin' duties here ! Of course, if we can get other offers to play in Europe and/or in the USA, we are willing to do it !! Hope you get the KIT 11 ticket soon. It must be a very rare and legendary show !! (Sure I have my ticket Man, couldn’t wait to get this haha – Ed.)

- Back to your scene… Japanese bands are numerous but it is really difficult for them to get recognition abroad… What are the reasons in your opinion ? I mean apart from Bow Wow (later known as Vow Vow - or was it the contrary… ?), Loudness, and more underground ones like Sigh, Sabbat Metalucifer, one cannot say they are very popular or known in Europe, except maybe for the most die-hard metal fans…
Well, I think the one of reasons is "English". Most of Japanese are not good at English. Most of Japanese have few conversations in English in their life. Just now, I am struggling with these answers haha !! Communications in English are needed when we go abroad. But most of Japanese bands don't have enough English skill for communications. So they can't do good & enough promotion outside Japan by themselves. But just in the past decade, methods of communications have totally changed.
We use computers, e-mails and internet. They made easy translations and quick communications.
I think, if many Japanese bands can use them much better than before, they’ll get more popular worldwide.
- What are the bands you could recommend us ? Do you know SATANICA, SOLITUDE, MAVERICK ? Are you good friends with them ? Those bands are all musically different, but they really kill in my opinion !
OK! I have received some interview offers ever. Every interview included the same question as yours. I like this question ! Because I can do good promotion for our friend & Japanese Heavy Metal bands !!

Well, We have no acquaintances with SOLITUDE. But I saw their show several times. They are a true Heavy Metal band ! I respect them!! MAVERICK and SATANICA are good friends of mine!! We played together many times ! I love their music !! Their patches are both on my jacket !! METALUCIFER, SABBAT, SIGH, ABIGAIL, GORGON are all great bands as you know. However, please check these Japanese Heavy Metal bands !! They are all great Heavy Metal bands !! Some bands have their own Myspace pages. AIMING HIGH, ARGUMENT SOUL, BLASDEAD, BLAZE, DETHBOUND, FASTKILL, FOUR,
- Ok, what are your current plans ?
We will release our next album in the end of this summer/early Autumn and will perform some shows in Japan. Then, we are going to Germany in November for live-appearance at KEEP IT TRUE 11!!
- Last words are yours, thanks for taking the time to answer those questions ...I hope this will help you getting more recognition from abroad !
Thank you, Fab !! and to all Metalheads who read this interview all
the way through ! Please check out our albums. Some songs can be checked on our MySpace.
No doubt you’ll love them! Please also check other Japanese Heavy Metal bands if you can and have interests ! And finally, buy many Metal albums at INFERNO Records haha !! See you in KEEP IT TRUE 11 !! Thanks again ! LONG LIVE THE LOUD !!


Last Updated on Thursday, 18 March 2010 20:14

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