GC: So, how are things with the band these days?
Things are going very well now with band. We went through a rough area between the middle of 2003 to early 2004, but once the new line up was sorted out, we have moved forward in leaps and bounds. The release of Psychic Vampire last year and Destroying the World to Save It, meant that we were able to continue on our path and reach goals that we had set out for ourselves some time ago. Playing WGT this year, was also a great experience. It’s a great honour to return to such a large festival.
GC: It must be so great to finally have a label again, tell us more about your journey on finding a new label. especially the label Static Sky here in the United States?
In December 2004, we had committed to WGT Leipzig for 2005, so we released a new album prior to the festival., as this was long overdue. It was time to start our new search and I came across Static Sky, as someone had mentioned them on live journal. I contacted Mark and was happy to hear he was familiar with the band. He down loaded a couple of new tracks from our site and was very enthusiastic towards promoting and putting out the new IKON album. It was important to us to feel that we had the support of the labels we were working with and Static Sky was a positive move for us.
GC: Can you briefly describe your concept of the new CD "Destroying the World to Save it"?
In July 2001, just before we were heading to Europe, I purchased a book to read on the plane titled ‘Destroying the World to Save It” which was written about the Aum Supreme Truth, the cult responsible for the 1995 subway nerve gassings in Tokyo, Japan. The main reason I purchased the book was due to the opening blurb which stated through out history, man kind has been confronted with a large number of leaders and cults have attempted to install their belief systems on society and take any lengths to do so. This very much changed the direction of the material that I wanted to write for the next album and decided that ‘Destroying the World to Save It’ was also a great title for the next IKON album. Shortly after, the World is confronted with the September 11 terrorist attacks, which showed the complete danger of fundamentalist religions, followers were happy to kill in the name of their God, which totally disturbed me. I was compelled to put Religion under the microscope and create a theme around that and the title. We were also very keen to make this album as guitar based as possible.
GC: What does this new CD show case the most about IKON as a premier gothic rock act?
It show cases IKON as being a gothic/wave guitar based band. And that’s what we do best. Having a break between releases made us realise what our roots were and the type of music we wanted to create. We were almost reborn, to a degree. The new album also show cases our major influences.
GC: The new album touches upon many different sounds such as tribal chanting, spoken word and even some Spanish brass, what was the inspiration for all these sounds?
We wanted to portray a realistic vibe to certain songs, such as ‘Slaughter’, which was inspired by a documentary I had watched on television about the demise of the Inca empire, through the Spanish inquisition. I think, to a degree I was attempting to create a musical. There is the Inca tribal aspect to the song, then along come the Spaniards on their horses with a bible in one hand and a sword in another. With The black Goat of Judas, I had a similar idea in mind, I wanted try something a little more avant guarde and add harsher shades to the song, instead of our standard song structure. All the songs are connected, in more than one way, but we wanted to add variation with certain songs and I’m extremely proud of the way that we have done that with this album.
GC: Can you tell us about your moody singing style on this album?
I’m still learning how to sing, so depending on how long ago some of the songs were written, meant that the recent tracks over the past year find myself taking a little more risk and moving outside my comfort zone. Writing and singing songs that were written through experience, anger and disappointment, generally create the harsher mood, opposed to the more mystical tracks that are a lot more sombre.
GC: Have you been touring in support of this album, if so how has it been? Do you have any interesting fan stories or highlights from shows this summer?
We have played a few shows in Australia and a couple in Germany in support of this release. The response for the new album has been excellent, which we are extremely happy about. It was 4 years since ‘On the Edge of Forever’ and we were a little concerned with how the album would go. We are always meeting people from all walks of life, which is an exciting part of being in a band and playing in different countries, but thankfully this year has been relatively incident free. We have had our share of psycho groupies, so the first sign of anything like that, sends us running.
GC: How have the two of you moulded and shaped each other as musicians during the 4 years before this release?
With the departure of David and Anthony in 2003, we had to re-structure how the band would function. With Clifford coming into the band early last year, it meant that I could focus more on the singing side and playing less guitar, while Dino became the dj, running all the electronic side to it. Playing festivals around Europe the past few years, has certainly improved our persona and given us a great deal of insight into the changes we had to make and we will continue to do so in the future.
GC: Were you ever worried that you may have lost fans between the four years without a major release since "On the edge of forever in 2001".or did you keep them informed of what was going on and tease them with Psychic Vampire"?
It’s always a concern having such a huge break between albums and it also got to the point where we felt like we were going around in circles and wondering if the material we had written was actually worthy of release. I guess this is why we ended up changing our choice of songs around a few times. We released ‘From Angels to ashes’ in 2003, which was a compilation between the years 1998-2003 and together with the release of PsychicVampire in 2004, meant that our name was still out there, but we needed the full World promotion of a new album. We are lucky that we have always had a loyal fan base
GC: How is the album doing in the U.S, since I see a lot of Australian press and gigs etc for it?
We are very happy with the response for the album around the World, including the US. Static Sky are right behind the release, which helps a great deal. Our only Disappointment, is that were are yet to play in the USA, but we are making plans to do a tour, latest by early 2007.
GC: "Rome" will be the next IKON single which is planned for release in late September, why this track? Also, can you tell us about the rest of the songs planned to be released on this single as well?
Rome has been delayed and is finally out next week. We remixed-edited Rome to make it more single/ club friendly without the intro etc and there is also an extended version featured as well. We have also included two unreleased songs, which were recorded late 2002 when we first started putting down songs for the album. A live version of God Has Fallen From The Sky and a remix of Blue Murder from the Psychic Vampire ep by friends Tankt, also from Melbourne and now part of the Static Sky team . The single is limited to a once off pressing of 1500 copies
GC: I noticed that you were on Crash Frequency, which is a collective of Australian dark/ electro bands. Are you close friends or play with any of these bands in Australia on a regular basis?
The collective was an idea that came from Dave Foreman from Tankt, who was friends with most of the Australian dark bands and wanted to form a collective of musicians, where bands can share contacts, organise events and the general strength in umbers scenario. We have put out our first compilation cd earlier this year containing 10 Australian artists. www.crashfrequency.com
GC: I believe I heard you played the Wave Gotik Treffen this past May. Was it as good of an experience as the time back in 2003 with around 15,000 people in the crowd?
We played in front of a crowd that size at Mera Luna in Germany in 2002, which was a fantastic experience. WGT in 2003 was in a venue called Parkbuhne which holds 2500 people. Was a great event, although playing outside does leave you at the mercy of the weather and that day was quite terrible, was incredibly hot. That’s rock n roll.
GC: I thought I read about an IKON DVD. What will be featured on the DVD which is set to be released around January 2006? Please correct me if I am wrong.
We have been working on a dvd since late last year, we have filmed a number of shows in Germany, as well as interviews, acoustic tracks and other events. A production company in Germany is putting the dvd together and it’s taking a little longer than expected. We also did a film clip whilst in Germany this year for Without Shadows, so we decided to release it as cd single next year containing the clip. We hope for the dvd to be released in 2006 which we are looking forward to getting it completed.
GC: So far, what is the best thing that has happened to IKON since your beginning in 1991?
Everything has been fantastic about IKON. Sure, we have had our ups and downs and line-up problems, but I would never have expected looking back when we started to have ever played outside the country and sold as many cds as we have. We get to play music, release it the way we want and also get to play overseas and meet lots of people with similar interests.
GC: Are there any fun facts to share about IKON with our readers?
I’m afraid my summer cold has taken all the fun out of everything right now, even memories.
GC: How does the future look for IKON now with being on a reliable label?
It’s taken a lot of the anxiety away that we had the past couple of years and really allowed us to focus back on the music. We have started making plans for our next album, which we hope to be out early 2007, we don’t want to leave such a big gap like we did last time. We are taking a break from the road next year and plan to start recording early next year. There are still some projects in the pipeline connected to ‘Destroying the World to Save It’, but whether or not we manage to get everything done without time running out and over lapping our new album, we will have to wait and see.
GC: Any final comments etc to
Thanks for all the support. Please visit our website www.ikondomain.com, myspace http://www.myspace.com/ikon666 or live journal http://www.livejournal.com/users/_ikon_/ for up to date info on the band.
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