With the release of their sophomore album, "Distant Kingdoms", Depressive Withes managed to pique our interest. The French band plays in a nice black n' roll style, combining various elements and influences. Myth of Rock was surprised with the fresh, catchy music material of Depressive Witches and talked with Sick Bab (vocals, guitars), who was polite enough to answer our questions. 

by Dimitris Zacharopoulos

When, where and under which circumstances was Depressive Witches formed? Give us a bio of the band, please.

Me and my brother Torvuus started to learn guitar at the same moment, 8 years ago, then we started to create some songs, which was really shitty, haha. Then in 2018, Torvuus started to learn drums and we started Depressive Witches together, as a doom metal band. In 2020 during the lockdown, we created the first album "Bad Flask", with a record session planned in February 2022.

Why did you name the band Depressive Witches?

The association of words is cool I think, and a "depressive witch" represents the quintessence of what loneliness and madness are.

 “Distant Kingdoms” was released some months ago. How do you see this album now? Would you change something to it, if you had the opportunity?

You always can change something, but what is recorded is recorded. We can change the songs when we play it live if we want…

How would you describe the musical style of Depressive Witches? How much have you progressed in comparison with your debut album?

A mix of black metal and rock'n'roll for sure, it's why we talk about black'n'roll. Bad Flask was primitive and catchy, Distant Kingdoms is less dark, more "fun" ? There is a true progression of course, but in fact, we started to write Distant Kingdoms just after Bad Flask, as a continuity.

Which are your music influences? What music do you listen to nowadays?

Black metal, hard rock, country… Very various, it's why we don't sound like a "typical black metal" band. About what we listen, nothing really extreme anymore in my case. Just classic rock, country, EBM, glam, goth rock… I have to admit that I'm a little bit tired of extreme metal these days. Torvuus loves rock n roll stuff, give him Motorhead and ZZ Top and he's happy

How do you compose the songs of Depressive Witches? What comes first, music or lyrics?

Sometimes, just taking the guitar in the morning is enough to find a riff. So mostly the music first, but we can find a concept by writing the lyrics first, as a poem.

Where do your lyrics refer to?

Medieval fantasy, battles, legends, personal themes… The lyrical themes change on every album in fact. Video games/movies are our main sources of inspiration for sure

Where was “Distant Kingdoms” recorded? Who did the production, the mixing and the mastering? Describe the recording sessions and the production process, please.

Like for "Bad Flask", we recorded it at Blackout Studio in Brussels. The recordings were supervised by Jonas Sanders and Ivan Houben, then Jonas mixed and mastered the whole project. Recordings took less than a week, we record fast.

I like very much the cover artwork of “Distant Kingdoms”.  Who has done it? Give all the information, please.

The artwork was made by Thomas Ewerhard. I found his work interesting, and we were looking for a realistic painting for the new album, he made artworks for Avantasia by the way. We knew the result was gonna be great.

How did the contract with WormHoleDeath come up?

Our manager at the time was looking for a label and he found them. The collaboration is good, we arranged the contract as we wanted.

Which are your ambitions for the band?

Good question. It will depend on the opportunities we will have, but I can tell you that playing on a mainstage in a big festival is clearly not a goal. I can't stand to be far away from the crowd, it's not interesting at all.

Do you play live in concert? Do you have any tour plans?

Yes, we made our first tour one year ago in Eastern Europe, then we played in Belgium, Switzerland, and we go back on tour at the end of February in Bulgaria/Romania/Serbia/Germany/France…

How did the Covid-19 pandemic affect you?

It wasn't so bad for us, because we wrote our first album. But it has been hell just to go into a bar and drink a beer.

What do you think about the war against Ukraine?


Send your message to the fans!

Thank you all for the support you guys give to Depressive Witches, all around the world!


One of the finest folk metal exports of Brazil, Tuatha de Danann, named after the supernaturally-gifted race in Irish mythology, has recently released a new single (and music video), “The Nameless”. Myth of Rock and Raquel Miranda, enchanted by the band’s Celtic metal tunes, contacted Tuatha de Danann and had a long, detailed discussion with singer and founder Bruno Maia, who had many interesting things to say!

Hi there, my friend. Thanks for accepting this interview and greetings from Greece to Brazil. Hope all is great with you.

Hi! I’m the one who thanks the support and a big hello to the Greeks!

First of all, I’d like you to introduce the band, the members and a little of your history, please.

Oh, we are a Brazilian folk metal band and we’ve been doing it, since mid the 90’s. It’s kind of strange a Brazilian band doing Celtic, Irish music, but that’s what we are. The band members have changed through the years and only me and Giovani Gomes, the bass player, are on it, since the beginning.

You’ve released your new single, “The Nameless”, that will be part of your next full length album. It’s darker than the previous ones. It’s even dramatic and emotional. Why these feelings? You even talk about justice in the lyrics. Care to talk about a little more, please?

Yes, this song is a bit more emotional and deeper than a lot of our content. It’s due to what we see in the world, right? Lots of hatred, murders, wars, here in Brazil we’ve been facing a fascist government that drove us to an indigenous genocide and almost a million of deaths on the pandemic, a ridiculous and ultra-right government against all that comes from the people, from the workers and minorities. We couldn’t sing about fairies back then.

One of the main inspirations for this single was the German philosopher, Walter Benjamin and his “Thesis on the Concept of History”. Was he a huge inspiration, since you’ve studied Irish History? Tell us about your university education and how it influenced this band.

I studied Literature and History, but my first graduated course – which I didn’t conclude- was ‘Communication’ . On these three different graduations, there was iconic texts from Benjamin, in Communications I studied “ The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction”, on Literature was “The Storyteller’ and when I did History the “Thesis on the Concept of History” was a huge study. Everywhere I was there was Benjamin! I really like his work, he had an unique mind, original, challenger, and revolutionary. A man who lost his life for the ultra-right fascists of Hitler. And ‘The Nameless’ was very connected to some thesis, specially 2, 4, 6 and 7, where he says we must be careful to catch the moments, when the past storms in present and how we will only have real justice, when we have the justice of memory and history hailing those ones who struggle in the past and loose everything, the nameless slaves, nameless poor people over those the parade of the powerful steps over.

The cover was created by Rodrigo Barbieri and seems like a painting. What was your main theme for it?

I let him free with the lyrics and he stroke again, he is just amazing!

The single was produced by you, Bruno, at Braia Studios, in Varginha, your homeland and will be released by Heavy Metal Rock, the label that discovered you. Will they do the same with the record?

Yes, they will release our album in Brazil, we are friends, they are a very decent and serious company, and we are all ok.

We know that the record will come soon and has eight tracks. What can we expect from it? More Celtic sounds? And what will be the themes? Care to tell us the name of it, please?

It will probably have nine songs, actually. The Celtic influences and instruments will be always there, this is our common ground. What changes is the direction we tend each time, we can be more progressive, or more heavy metal, or going towards power metal, or like ‘The Nameless’, which I believe it tends to something darker, dramatic, like Anathema, My Dying Bride, I don’t know…. The lyrics are a bit more realistic than the old ones.

Let’s talk about the past, shall we? You’re the pioneers of folk metal in your country’s metal. All began in 1994. Congrats, since it’s your 29th anniversary! How do you feel about that?

Jesus Christ, I never realized that it was about to reach 30 now! HAHAHA. I was only 13 years old, when we did our first concert, it was mad, I was writing metal music, since my 12 years old! HAHAHAH. As we were very young and things changed really fast at teenage age, the band wasn’t folk at all in 94, it was death/doom metal… we went into folk in 1995, but kept some gothic and doom stuff and then only in 98 we reach a kind of folky heavy metal.

Your first album, “Tuatha de Danann”, began this journey for you. What do you remember from that experience?

We recorded it very far from home and we were very young and crazy. We thought we were like Mötley Crüe guys with all that madness, hahahaha, good madness…. And the album did very well, it sold a lot in the Brazilian underground, which brought us lots of concerts and the band’s name was growing very good. The sound quality, execution and performances were all are dreadful, but that was real, there’s real feelings and emotions there. The music is a bit strange for us today, at least it’s very different of what we do today, nowadays we only play live the first song ‘Us’, but that was quite a good debut album.

“Tingaralatingadun”, from 2001, is the most iconic and well-known album from you. Everyone knows it for the video you’ve made for the music. How was it for you to make the record, twenty-four years ago? The producer, Thiago Bianchi, even said on the documentary about this record that it was one of his craziest that he produced.

Oh yeah, it was crazy! We were a bunch of rural people in one of the biggest cities in the world (São Paulo)… and we stood on Thiago’s studio a full month or more. We were still like maniac Mötley Crüe guys at that time, but the recording was serious… It was a big shock for us, we had to record with click tracks for the first time, it was painful, hahaha. But there are memorable songs like ‘The Dance of the Little Ones’, ‘Tan Pinga ra Tan’ and ‘Be hold the Horned King’… we were creating and developing a sort of our own mythology, with our characters (Finganfor, Lyx the fox), our places( Tan Pinga ra Tan) and events like Tingaralatingadun and I believe we found something very unique in our music there, despite the errors and mistakes that haunts the album yet…. We could mix well our influences like Beatles, the 60s psychedelia stuff, some prog touches and death, doom and power metal all with Celtic and Irish sounds and instrumentation. From this album on, we’ve been being ourselves.

How about re-recording it? Will you remake that music video?

Actually, we just re-recorded the track ‘The Dance of the Little Ones’ to this anniversary edition. But through the years, we did different versions of two other songs from this album, ‘Tan Pinga ra Tan’ and ‘Battle Song’ that we did it instrumental under the name ‘Moytura’.

“The delirium has just began” was released in 2002. What delirium were you talking about?

We were into psychedelic things and experiences, mushrooms etc.… and there is that epic Yes album, “Relayer”, with the song ‘The Gates of Delirium’…. How I love that! And there was this song, a big one, with lots of different sections and parts which we called ‘The Delirium has just Begun’…that was it. And this is the first album of ours that I don’t have any complaining… I like all the performances till today, the sound and everything. It was our first album released in Europe, in France, and it went pretty nice in there, the label ended up releasing all our catalogue in there after ‘The Delirium…’.

“Trova di Danú” is a very dear album to the fans. Why is that? Tell us more about that album, please.

The sound and the whole production of this album was incredible for us at that time…And the musicality is very diverse on it: you have the shinning songs like ‘Bella Natura’, ‘Believe: its true’ and ‘Land of Youth’, you have the acoustic and mysterious ‘Trova di Danú’, a ballad ‘Spellboundance’, a heavier one ‘The Arrival’, the progressive ‘The Wheel’…. Is a very complete album.

 “The Tribes of Witching Souls” has more Irish influences in it. “Turn” is one of the best compositions ever. “Warrior Queen” has a strong vibe. Fernanda Lira (Crypta) and Daísa Munhoz (Twilight Aura) sang both in it. How was the composition in this album, lyrically and musically speaking?

I love this album! I love how it sounds, the guitar tones, the drums and the songs! I believe the title track and ‘Turn’ are among our best songs ever, and maybe I’d include ‘Warrior Queen’ as well. The composition was quite the same: I am the main composer, but there’s always some partnership happening. Martin Walkyier wrote the lyric to ‘Your Wall Shall Fall’ and sang this one as well. This song is a calling against the savage capitalism that explores nature without limits and responsibility… The lyrics depends on the songs, the title track is about the band itself, ‘Turn’ is about passivity, conformity and for you to have bollocks to face life and maybe the ‘system’, ‘Warrior Queen’ is a tribute we did to all woman in the world, we have loads of feminicide in Brazil and we know how women face prejudice, have more obstacles to win and etc….’Conjura’ is about a Brazilian conspiracy during the colonial times that happened in our state Minas Gerais. There’s loads of themes in there. This album was released in Europe by the German label, Trollzorn.

“In Nomine Éireann” is your last one. Was it a difficult one?

It was hard, because we were in the middle of the pandemic, so everything was hard to achieve… But it was a big learning time as well. I am ten times more experienced and safer on studio now. It’s a special album, in which we chose some Irish traditional songs and tunes and made our own version of those. I like it in its whole!

You even have an acoustic album. What is this album, and where was the shooting? How was the experience?

Actually, that was a DVD called ‘Acoustic Live’ …we recorded it on 2008, but only last year we released this audio online. The show was in São Paulo and was very nice to do that…very funny full of beautiful and nice people.

“The Molly Maguires” is a very popular Irish song and you sing it with Keith Fay, from Irish celtic metal band, Cruachan, and violinist Kane O’Rourke. Tell us more about that experience.

Yes, this is a very known song for Irish people and the Molly Maguire’s movement as well. I invited Keith, because we are long time friends and who could do it better than the Irish pioneer of Folk Metal? Keith Fay! He was amazing in his parts!!! Kane is a savage fiddle player and a very nice friend of mine. In the middle of our Molly Maguire, we insert a reel called ‘Fermoy lasses’ and it was deadly cool.

You have your own project: Braia. Tell us more, please.

Oh, yeah! Around 2006 I was creating some music, still having this Celtic inspiration but that doesn’t fit to what I realized Tuatha de Danann should sound like. Then I decided to record a full album. Some guys from Tuatha de Danann helped me recording, Giovani Gomes and Edgard Brito and I believe it was a very nice album. It was released in France as well, that was grand, because was in Portugal and the label released it, because there were a lot of Tuatha de Danann fans in there… And I released the second album last year, an instrumental one, still with huge Irish influences and instrumentation, but with more Brazilian music. There’s the guest Felipe Andreoli from Angra.

You play traditional Irish instruments. Which ones? Is it difficult?

I play some, like tin and low whistles, Irish Flute, bouzouki and banjo. They are difficult as any other instrument is. On ‘Trova di Danú’, I played a small pipe on ‘The Danann’s Voice’.

You went to Wacken, Germany, in 2005. How was the experience for you? Did you see any bands? What do you remember?

Fantastic! How could we imagine we would play at Wacken! It was marvelous! We were in a French tour that our French label booked, it was 15 gigs around France, so it ends with three concerts in Germany, one in Aschafenburg, one in Metal Bash and Wacken. We went very well, the place was really full and the crowd was very warm, I’ll never forget that.

You even have a festival, Roça’N’Roll. Andre Matos was one of the guests to perform there. Tell us the concept of it, please. Will it happen this year?

This festival lasted 19 years. Roça means a countryside, rural place… It starts very small and ended up very nice with 3 stages, bands and people from all over the world, we have also one of the biggest medals of Greek metal music in one edition: Rotting Christ, it was a fantastic concert. The festival was born with the concept of being a tool for new and talented bands to have a decent place and gear to play; with time it gets bigger and we brought international bands, like Rotting Christ, Grave Digger, Cathedral, Samael, Orphaned Land, Pain of Salvation, Amorphis and many more. Angra, Shaman and many other Brazilian well-known bands performed there too, Andre Matos came three times to Roça’n’Roll.

And what about the tour this year? What are the plans? Will you come to Europe? Would you like to visit some countries, such as Portugal and Greece? What can we expect?

We’d love to do that! But its not completely in our hands… We need festivals interested in our music, concerts, etc.…It would be marvelous to know Portugal and Greece, I hope we can do it someday, THIS YEAR, haha.

Bruno, tell us more about yourself. Hobbies, bands that you like and more, please, so that fans might know you a little more.

I’m a lucky bastard, because I´m still resisting and striking by living with music and arts. So, my work is what I love. Music is a hobby, history, literature and cinema. Favorite bands are hard, but I could say Paradise Lost, old Helloween, Amorphis, Rainbow, Yes and Beatles. 

Bruno, thanks once again for accepting this interview and greetings from Greece to Brazil. Hope to talk to you soon. Cheers!

Thank you a lot and I hope Greek people give us a chance following us on Spotify, Bandcamp and most of all: hope to see you on tour. Still safe and healthy!


“Ascension Beyond Kokytus” … the best way to drown in an atmospheric metal madness, a way shown by the amazing Costa Rican band VoidOath. On behalf of the band, Christopher De Haan (guitars, vocals) spoke to Myth of Rock and Dimitris Zacharopoulos and gave his nice, polite and interesting answers. Get ready to burn down in this sludge metal inferno!

Give us a short biography of VoidOath until now.

VoidOath was formed in 2018. We’ve known each other from other bands (Age of the Wolf and Redhead Match), and we wanted to create something different and heavier, more focused on creating music that comes from our interpretation of horror works.


You released your debut album some days ago. Which are your feelings now?

We are very happy with the overall reception for the album, Cursed Monk’s batch of the album has already been sold out, and Cognitive Discordance Records is almost out of copies as well.

People have been very receptive to the record, which we really appreciate. We got great reviews from different publications, including being featured on Cvlt Nation’s Top 10 Sludge Releases of 2022.


Give us all the information about the recording process and the whole production of “Ascension Beyond Kokytus”.

We wrote the album in about eight months, and we had been playing around with riffs since the release of “Illumination Through Necromancy “(Harmful Existence), so we already had various ideas on what we wanted for the record and how we wanted it to sound like.

After that, we recorded, produced, and mixed the album by ourselves.


You are being described as a doom/sludge metal band. Do you agree with this description? Why?

We mainly got around sludge and doom on our first release, and this was heavily based on the nature of the source material we were adapting. For this new release, we found ourselves having some death and black metal influences, as well as retaining those sludge and doom elements.


Who is main composer in VoidOath? Which are your music influences?

Jose Rodriguez handles most of the guitar composition, but every member adds their own interpretation to Jose’s riffs. We also, collectively, decide on removing or adding specific parts as well as adding synths and that kind of stuff. It’s hard to say which influences are prevalent at any specific time, our goal is to bring something different to each record. We are definitely fans of bands like Sumac, Yob, Interarma, Neurosis, Isis, Toadliquor, Corrupted, Kongh, The Body, Kurokuma, to say a few, but we really listen to all kinds of stuff.


“Ascension Beyond Kokytus” is a concept album. Who writes the lyrics? Can you give us all the necessary details about the concept and the lyrics of the album?

Christopher wrote the lyrics to the album, based on the source material of "Who Goes There", John Carpenter’s "The Thing", as well as expanding into the lore set up by multiple media such as videogames and comics. The album, a lot like the movie, details a starship crashing down in the arctic, that then is recovered by humans. To the human’s demise, the creature starts to consume them, isolate them, and make them distrustful of each other.


Who did the cover artwork of the album? Give us all the details please!

The artwork was handled by Nataly Nikitina; we gave her a rough sketch of what we wanted, and she delivered an awesome cover, completely desolate and aggressive.


Why did you name the band VoidOath?

No reason in particular, it sounded cool, but it’s just a name


You come from San Jose, Costa Rica. How are things for metal in Costa Rica? Is there a metal scene? Which difficulties do you face as a metal band in/from Costa Rica?

We have a small scene in our country, but we have a shit ton of bands, mostly thrash and death metal bands, but in late years we’ve had a lot of new genres incorporating the whole of the scene.  One of the many difficulties is that we are very severed from the world community, band and music wise, it is also a very expensive country to travel from and to, and being such a small country that is mainly used as a vacation spot, the country’s size doesn’t help.


VoidOath has intricate, long compositions. Why is that?

Weed. But also, some of the pieces we adapt have themes and atmospheres that lend themselves to very long and hypnotic layering.


One of VoidOath’s characteristics is the sultry, dark atmosphere of your songs. Do you agree with me? How would you explain this atmosphere?

We like to make things quite atmospheric; we believe this is a very strong part of our songwriting process. We like to make people feel like they are drowning and then forcefully pulled to reality.


Which are your ambitions for VoidOath?

We’d like to play live more, get our record out on Vinyl, and work on our next album.


Is a tour on your schedule?

We are hoping to visit some countries in Latin America. We hope we can materialize that soon enough!


How did the Covid-19 pandemic and its restrictions affect you as individuals and as a band?

We stopped working momentarily during the first weeks as we had no way to get to gather due to heavy restrictions. So, we worked on a side project called Dilapidated Mechanism which we did around the first months of the lockdown, it took about two weeks to put everything up remotely. But shortly after this, we were able to get together again and keep on working on the songs during rehearsals. So, we eventually got around restrictions to be able to finish the album.


Send your message to the fans!

Greetings to the fans of Myth of Rock, give “Ascension Beyond Kokytus” a listen and tell us what you think! Thanks for the support, and thanks to you Dimitris for having us for this interview. Cheers!

AMERICAS: https://cognitivediscordancerecords.bandcamp.com/album/ascension-beyond-kokytus  (Jewel Case CD w/ Exclusive O-Card, Poster, Stickers and Download Card)

UK/EUROPE: https://cursedmonk.bandcamp.com/album/ascension-beyond-kokytus (digipak CD)  

DIGITAL: https://voidoath.bandcamp.com/album/ascension-beyond-kokytus

Digital/Streaming Media: https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/voidoath/ascension-beyond-kokytus  

Cognitive Discordance Records:


Top class power/progressive metal! That’s what you will find in “Rage”, the new album of Pyramid. Pyramid is an international, all-star project around bassist Lance Sawyer, whose extraordinary vision is incarnated in a beautiful musical corpus, with the help of well-distinguished musicians from all over the world. “Rage” waits for your response, as Lance Sawyer was kind enough to answer our list of questions!

Where, when and how was Pyramid formed?
It was formed in 2017 by me .. Joey Izzo (keyboards) and Adam Bentley (guitars) were both fresh out of Berklee and I reached out to the both of them and ideas and music came about.

Why did you decide to form Pyramid as an international all-star project and not as a simple band?
I wanted certain elements and music ideas that to me made sense to the music I was producing.

Is Pyramid a studio only project or do you also play live in concert?
Pyramid is a project at the moment but there have been talks of bringing this to the stage.

How do you feel now that you have released your new album? Are you satisfied with the response of the media and the fans?
“Rage” is getting lots of attention and that is amazing and very satisfying.

How much has Pyramid progressed in this new album?
Pyramid is building parts and pieces and making a solid structure and foundation. Each brick is just as important as other.

Now that almost four months have passed since the official release of “Rage”, what would you change to it, if you had the opportunity?
I’m very happy with the release. I’m not sure I would change anything.

 Many musicians take part in “Rage”. With which criteria did you select the guest musicians?
Yes I did. I constructed and put together the band and vocalists.

How was it to collaborate with two famous metal singers, Tim “Ripper” Owens and Harry “The Tyrant” Conklin?
It’s amazing. Both of these two love and have passion for what and who they are.

I noticed that in some parts of your songs we can hear violin. How did you decide to add the violin? Who is the violinst? Give us all the info!
Yes, the old school Celtic Violin of Perrine. She’s a world renowned violinist in France. I reached out to her and she was honest that she has never played in a metal project like this. As she recorded and time went on, she found herself very excited and happy to be part of it.

Describe the recording sessions and the whole production of “Rage”. Who did the mixing and the mastering?
The recording process is awesome. We all recorded our parts in the luxury of our own studios. Adam is a mixing engineer, so he did all the mixing and engineering. Maor Appelbaum a world famous mastering engineer did all the mastering.

How would you describe the music of Pyramid?
It’s a combination of modern and new retro styles combined.

Where do your lyrics refer to?
Lyrics are everyday life, feelings, politics and extreme loss.

Which are your favorite music styles and your favorite musicians/bands?

I like Rush, Tool, Animals as Leaders, Dream Theater the list goes on.

How is a typical Pyramid song composed? How much important is the (complex) song structure for Pyramid?
I write all the structure of the music. It’s a combination of many styles and ideas that is typically more design of how I play and write music.

If you could choose a famous artist to co-operate with in the next Pyramid studio album, who would he/she be?
As we speak, Glen Driver formerly lead guitarist of Megadeth and King Diamond are collaborating on music now.

How did you decide to work with Sleaszy Rider?
Andry Lagiou was signed under the label, so she introduced Tolis to me.

Which are your future plans?
To keep writing building a concept and put awesome music out.

Send your message to the fans!
Thank you for all your support and love.


Without a doubt, WormHoleDeath is one of the biggest labels in rock and metal music nowadays. Carlo Bellotti, the owner of the label, can be proud of his great work, proud of making WormHoleDeath a huge institution of the contemporary rock/metal music business, through which fantastic groups and artists are able to release their fine music and get it to the fans! Myth of Rock was lucky enough to discuss many interesting topics with Carlo Bellotti, who gently gave his remarkable answers – this interview contains things that are of everyone’s interest (bands, fans, companies etc.) and I am sure that all will find some really significant things to learn!   

by Dimitris Zacharopoulos

Hello Carlo! What is WormHoleDeath? Present us the parts of the whole group please.
Our company head office is in Firenze (Italy), we are organized with two partners, me and Natascia. We both have two guys each in our respective departments. Internally we only do A&R and Coordination. Then in every continent (USA, Japan, Australia, South America, America Latina, Europe, Russia etc.) we have an export partner that deals with local distributors. For the promotion we have our own Press Office, but we also hire external agencies locally to increase the volume of press and radio coverage. We have also external people helping us with a lot of tasks and a very strong booking agency we work with. In USA and Japan where we have our offices we sign bands through these offices and we have extra promotion activities, label representation. As a company we are administered by Warner Chappell Music (Warner Music Group) and we have released 400 albums so far... We belong to label groups in Europe (Aural Music Group), America (Misra Label Group) and Japan (Bit Organization Inc.) to be stronger in these very important key markets and receive the max support and services (contacts, marketing, distribution, promotion, administration etc.) from the label groups we belong to. We work with a network of distributors all over the world, the best ones I believe (The Orchard/Sony Music for digital, Audioglobe in Italy, Edel for GAS, Soundpollution in Scandinavia, Shellshock in England, Hellion Records in South America, The Groove Merchant in Australia, Redeye in the US, Disk Union in Japan, Soundworks in France, Propagande in Canada, Sonic Rendevouz in Benelux and many more) and a powerful press office with a 10.000 media mail out. Our offices are Located in Los Angeles, Firenze and Tokyo and we have more than fifty people working for and with the label all over the world. We are affiliated to a very strong Concert Booking agency based in Canada that is capable to book concerts and tours in Europe, USA, Canada and Australia thanks to the huge networks of sub-agents that they have created.

How did it all start in the very beginning? How did you get into the music business?
Like 90% of the label owners, I started in the music business as a musician. In 1992 I formed my first serious band, it was called Necromass (black metal) and like all the bands we started with a demo. The demo sold more than 1000 copies in a month and a label approached us to print it professionally (it was a tape obviously). Then a friend of us financed a 7“ and a more serious label (with real distribution) offered us a contract for a second 7“. This second 7“ was distributed by Unisound International (a big Greek label) and sold more than 2700 copies in one week. The guys from Unisound International called me to offer us a deal for a full length album...The album was ready, produced by me (like all the other releases) and the label released. We sold a lot of copies (CD/LP/CS and 19 different types of t-shirts, hoodies and long sleeve) in Europe, but also in the US (they never told me the real amounts) and we became very well known...We did a lot of interviews, collaborations, concerts... From that moment I started working with a lot of bands in studio and I became a producer. With my productions I was attending Popkomm every year and in 2000 I had a very interesting meeting with a Dutch MD from Warner that liked a lot my stuff and explained me that it was a good move for me to start a publishing company under Warner (administrated by them)... I did it and I officially became a music publisher under the Warner Music Group. So, the final move to complete my business platform, as you can imagine, was to create a label to give my production clients and publishing artists the label services (distribution and Press Office). I am a big fan of an Italian label Group called Aural Music and luckily the owner is a big fan of my work, so I asked him if he was interested to start my label under his group. He said yes immediately, so it has been a lucky strike for me as I was starting a new label with the credibility of a powerful label group, with a big distribution network (my first six albums have the SPV brand on the cds), help with marketing and promotion... At the same Popkomm I had another meeting with a small American start-up called The Orchard, which was trying to start a digital distribution business... They were trying to invent the B2B service of “Aggregator“. They contacted me via the Italian country manager and I decided to sign with them for my digital marketing (What was it?? We didn't know, but it sounded futuristic so we liked it). Another lucky strike, because today The Orchard is owned by Sony Music and is the biggest digital distribution company in the world, so I have so much support and help from them, which is unbelievable, because they help me with promotion, marketing, technical support and much more. That's more or less how Wormholedeath started.

How did WormHoleDeath become a big label? Which were the main obstacles you had to overcome and the big sacrifices you had to make, in order to become a successful label?
Becoming important and the big sacrifices we have made, could have the same answer: get out of the comfort zone, leave the “safe job” at the shopping mall, work so hard that you feel sick, you see double at the end of the day, you faint ... Risk all the money that you make investing them promoting your brand and bands, because you truly believe in what you are doing and in your artists... Be honest, true, transparent, but also tough, strong and accept no compromise.  Will is Power, Death or Glory.

How easy or difficult is it to make money in the rock/metal music business? Which is your advice to the ones, who want to get into the music business as businessmen, journalists etc.?
Don't do it....There's too much to work, too much sacrifice... In this world where people want everything and immediately this is not a good idea.  I have earned my first euro after 10 years working for free and after having spent so much money to create my portfolio of products that only somebody crazy like me could have followed that path... I also had to fight with my parents that wanted me to become a lawyer, doctor etc., etc. ... In the end, I made it... I do the job I love and I live with it. This is the real success... Now I know that I was born for this.

How can somebody work for WormHoleDeath?

It's very difficult...I am too demanding to work for. Even if I have to say that after having kept one guy one year under my radar, I have hired him permanently. He's now our A&R and we are really, really happy with his work....But he's just one out of a million. Also, my assistant Carla keeps the struggle, since quite a lot of time and she could be easily sanctified as Martyr by the Christian church...Then there are a lot of freelancers that work with us managing their own time and tasks which we really like, because they only send us the invoice when the job is done.

Which music genres does WormHoleDeath cover?

All rock and metal genres as long as the quality is good. We don't have a “sound concept”, but our “label concept” is the high quality... Hard rock and prog are the main genres right now, but we also work with metalcore, death metal, thrash metal, power metal, industrial, epic metal, grindcore, deathcore, groove Metal etc., etc. Everything with heavy/powerful guitars and vocals.

How many albums has WormHoleDeath released until now? Which are some of the most important WormHoleDeath releases, in your opinion?

We have released around 450 albums on CD/digital and around 100 digital only ... so let's say around 550 … I don't have an important release, because for us they are all important the same way, no matter if one has generated 100.000$ revenue and one only 500$ … We don't weight our artists based on the money that we make on them, we consider our artists “family” or not based on how they threat us and how they act with us. If they are nice, polite, loyal, honest, grateful, hardworking and love being a team with us and bearing our logo on their album for us they are REALLY IMPORTANT, even if they didn't sell much, they are family. Instead, if they are inflated balloons, rude and give everything for granted they are out, even if they have sold well. This is our policy and it's not going to chance, because we know that the humble will grow, forever...The snooty will end up down the drain.

With which criteria do you sign bands? How can a band become a member of WormHoleDeath?

The quality criteria are very simple and complicated at the same time, as they are simple to be listed and complicated to achieve. The Quality of the Music, The Production, The People and The Image go together as first. For me the music is not enough alone. The band needs to have a very strong sound/production/identity and Image. On top of this I want to know the guys to understand who they are and how they „think“, because I don't like rock star wannabes, inflated balloons, big heads, hot-headed, impolite/rude etc etc. When I understand that the guys are very humble and nice, the album has great songs and a super powerful production, the band really cares about the image (with „image“ I mean graphic artworks, photos, but also having an official website, cool merch, perfect English pronunciation and grammar in the lyrics-bio-posts, updated socials with engagement with fans etc.) we can check the last thing that is their attitude in being their own managers, selling theirselves and entrepreneur potential. If all these criteria match, then we can make an offer. I don't care if the band is young or has seven albums already, I don't care if the band has videos with million streams or 1000 plays... If I find what I want, the things I just said, then for me it's deal. We, unlike many other labels, don't rely on numbers, we rely on the people and their artistic vision/attitude ... For me the attitude is 99% of the success.

Which is your advice to the newcomer bands of the contemporary rock/metal scene?
Write an album that is very difficult to market, because it becomes the new market. Steal from the bands that you listen to, don't copy. Make new art, not new copy of old art. Be unique, be true to yourself and to your fans.  Work with a label, don't play the musicianmanagerlaberA&RdistributoPragent etc., etc. ... It's simply ridiculous...It doesn't work that you put the music on YouTube and Distrokid and you collect sales and media exposure... It takes years and years of relations (and money) with the media, radio, magazines etc. to get the space. Be serious, be credible, this is my suggestion.

Nowadays technology and internet have changed the way music is released and distributed. How have technology and internet affected labels like WormHoleDeath? Do you think things have gotten better or worse with internet?
Well, the biggest challenge has been the transition from physical products to digital … Together with music distribution, the media has changed from being printed magazines to web magazines. Even a lot radios have moved onto the web creating the so called “web radios”. That has been the biggest challenge (because the torrents were giving the chance to everybody to steal the music), but being with pioneers like The Orchard helped us to understand the changes in the market and the sale/distribution of music. Then it changed again from sales to streaming… This has been a huge change, because all the promotion was not done to sell products anymore, but the goal was to get the songs streamed by people … The numbers with streaming became the main thing and they have to be big, huge, if you want to make any profit in music. I believe that people should buy the music how they like, not save it in a bloody Spotify account to listen to it again later… Music loses its value like this and bands can’t make much money, due to the fact that streaming is paid in peanuts. I prefer when we released albums on LP and we sold 10.000 copies, the magazines were on paper, we were writing each other letters and not emails ...

What music do you listen to nowadays, Carlo? Which are your favorite bands and artists?

Favorite records for sure “Deathwish“ and “Only Theatre Of Pain“ from Christian Death. I am a huge fan of Rozz Williams, and Shadowdream’s “The Sunsettler’s Motel“, I love the Pixies' “Surfer Rosa“ as well. I also listen to shoegaze bands like Interpol, darkwave (Joy Division, The Cure, A Place to Bury Strangers). I like Sonic Youth, Sigur Ros, The Killers, Editors,  Placebo, Rammstein … Some devastating hardcore like Converge, Neurosis, Comeback Kid, Shai Hulud and a few new bands like Lorna Shore, Fit for an Autopsy and Wage War.

How have the Covid-19 pandemic and its restrictions affected you and WormHoleDeath?
Covid has made us sell a lot of B2C services through our agencies (Volume, Firmline network), because all the bands could not play live so wanted to invest money on videos, merch, print CDs, LPs etc., etc., … So we have made big money with services. Also the labels have done very well, because even if the bands didn't play live, they have written a lot of new music, recorded, answered interviews, created new strategies, so we have been working a lot closely to them... Obviously we have gone through a lot of logistic troubles... Stocks blocked at customs in South America, Japan, North America.... CDs and LPs destroyed …. But after all it has been positive for us.

WormHoleDeath published a film by Susi Medusa Gottardi. Can you give us all the important information about this film?

Well, we are all big fans of underground films and film makers, so when Susi Medusa Gottardi of Private asked us if we wanted to produce one of her regular (not adult) films, we immediately agreed, and as a result our label also opened a small "film production" division. The movie is mainly a collaboration between our oldest band “The Way Of Purity” and Susi that wanted to work together, but obviously for a bunch of freaks like they are a normal videoclip was not an option, so they asked me to produce this 30 min. film. I think it came out very cool! The narrative is presented as documentary of a true scary event. The film relates the story of four musicians who hike into the dark forest near Prague to perform a strange religious ritual and find an old tape recorder in a black house. This tape recorder contains recordings of a suffering voice. After further research, the band finds out that the “dream” has just begun and that everything has a deep religious meaning. After that incredible event, the four guys decided to write an album and use the voices found on the recorder as main vocals in the songs … “Thirty minutes of brutal romantic atmosphere, written, directed and created by Susi Medusa Gottardi. This film relates the story of a true scary event experienced by a band of young extremists of the cross: The Way of Purity. The four members of this band are musicians united in faith through a blood pact, they have a higher religious mission and are in contrast with their manager: in a moment of very strong emotional tension they are guided, apparently by chance, into a black house inside the dark forests of Bohemia, where they find an old tape recorder that contains the harsh, screaming lyrics of a suffering female voice that causes them insane visions of blood and martyrdom. After further research, the band finds out that what happened to them has a powerful religious meaning: as this is the voice of a girl’s spiritual purity, recorded while she was taking her own life in the name of God back in 1972. Deeply moved by all this, they decided to compose the album “Crosscore” using the voices found on the recorder as main vocals in the songs. Featuring young actress Lena and Steve J. Drakos”. The DVD is not for sale, only available as a present for our friends and the digital file has been bought in 47.000 copies.

WormHoleDeath is the owner of Opera Core. Can you give us all the necessary details about Opera Core?
Opera Core is a solid sound concept initially started by Wormholedeath with the band Crysalys in 2011. Later during 2015 and after the big success of Crysalys’ album “The Awakening of Gaia” (which was conceived to be the link between Opera and Apocalyptic Devastation), Norhod decided to inherit the legacy and rejuvenate the movement. In 2017 Opera Core was finally back with Elegy Of Madness’ epic third album “New Era”.  The singers must have a degree in Opera singing at Conservatorio and the album needs to be mixed in a certain way with a certain sound. The themes must be apocalyptic. It's not easy to be released under this brand and to be honest we don't even get many submissions...A lot of bands like the idea, but they don't even try as they see it's too hard. “Only three bands in the roster ... We don't even try ...” I can't blame them...I have seen that now Opera Core is officially a music genre, sub-Genre of metal... I am proud to be the one who created it.

Which are your ambitions/goals for WormHoleDeath? What should we expect in the future from you and WormHoleDeath?

Our ambitions are to get every band that we release to a certain guaranteed level, and we are working for this. The amount of money that we are spending to make agreements with so many media, radios, festivals all around the world is phenomenal, but when this “media/promo/guaranteed network” will be created, then it will be the end of all our competitors, because every band we will sign, no matter the genre, no matter the potential, will be able to reach some incredible promotional results that only the HUGE labels could guarantee in the past. This is our goal. We have already achieved it with distribution and publishing with the major labels, now with concerts...The last step is the biggest and more expensive, with the media. What you can expect is more and more bands in the charts, certified gold, big tours, big festivals....

Can you give us some information about WormHoleDeath’s future releases? To which WormHoleDeath album release are you looking forward?

There's no favorite album or band we are expecting, because they are all the same for us, all important, all priority releases. For sure I can tell you about the contracts that we have renewed: The Way Of Purity (releasing a new album), Temtris (releasing a new album), Arched Fire (releasing a new album), All Wasted (releasing new singles), Duckwalk Chuck (getting ready to record the new album), Colin Secretan (new project Demons by Design), After Evolution (getting ready to record the new album), Thomas Hansen (Under The Oak and Bolverk new albums), Areis (getting ready to record the new album) and many others we are talking with... Thanx a lot for the space, really enjoyed answering your questions!!