Let's talk a little about the history of your band. When did you originally form and is this the original line-up?
Julio: The SR was formed in ‘93 after me and the vocalist Agnaldo split from a Death band called Garbage [Death Metal band from the countryside of RS, don’t mistake with the “mainstream” Garbage] that we had together. I was the drummer and contributed with my compositions and arrangement. My musical taste as well as Agnaldo’s and Diogo’s, our guitarrist at the the time, end up to gradually separate us from the rest of the band and our leave from the band. What was actually happening was that my songs already started with a slow vibe witch don’t fit in a death metal band, in a way that the first two songs of SR, Garden of Illusion and Mistress Of My Paradise, were originally composed in this band. Throughout the SR’s journey we had classic formations that we miss, as I say that from the original formation theres only me and Agnaldo left.
Agnlado: Me and Julio know each other since the half of the 80’s. We were tape traders and were involved in other bands before we formed the Serpent Rise in 1993. From the original formation theres only me and Julio left now, but we have with us Luis Henrique at the drums who was in the formation of the “Gathered by...” divulgation tour [1998-2000] and we count with Eder at the keyboards who recorded the keyboard lines in the album, as well as the new talent Cristian Lovatto [Arkonnan band] at the bass.
Do you remember how the idea of forming the band first came up?
Julio: I belive good part of this question is answered previously, basically us from the original core of the band [Julio, Agnaldo and Diogo] naturally, after our slipt from the Garbage, formed the SR witch would fit better in our sound intends and thats what we did.
How would you categorize the style of the band?
Julio: Atmospheric Gothic Doom Metal, or just Doom Metal.
What image do you want your music to convey to your fans?
Julio: We want to transmit the image of a authentic band, that always share for its own sound identity.
Who are your influences and how have they shaped your bands’ sound?
Julio: Our music is the result of the fusion of bands from the 70's like King Crimson, Captain Beyond, Aphrodit's Child, Jane, Atomic Rooster, so it goes… 80's like, The Cure, Sisters Of Mercy, Fields Of Nephilim , and others from the late 80's and early 90's like HellHammer, Celtic Frost, Entombed, Napalm Death, Sarcophagus, Venon, Bathory as well as industrial bands like Ministry, NIN, GodFlesh, Carcass, Cathedral and many others. These as some of the melting pot of influences that contributed to our sonority and musicality.
Let's talk a little about your latest album what are the listeners in store for with this release?
Agnaldo: Well, here I need to clarify that we have only one album released so far. Its called "Gathered by ..." recorded in 1996, released two years later, in 1998. Twenty years laters it’s release, it won a limited re-edition in double version and totally remastered. This album brings an odd sonority that makes it remain being remembered and worshiped.
Where did record your latest release at?
Agnaldo: It was recorded at Bobby’s studio in Santa Maria/RS – Brazil.
Producers are a very important factor in recording a good record. Who did you use to produce your record?
Julio: Our producer engineer in the “Gathered by...” was from the studio which we were scheduled to record, we made a deal with him, an extra value, I would say a good investment, because he helped a lot in the recordings, mixes, etc.
Does the entire band contribute to the writing process?
Agnaldo: In the album "Gathered by ..." 90% of the sounds were composed and written by Julio and me. The rest is divided among the members at the time.
How do you feel the band has evolved musically and personally over the last year?
Julio: There no denying that with age maturity comes along, today I think a lot in a more direct Doom Metal and a sonority. I dont see me composing 12 minutes epopeys as Travelling Free, witch is a great song, so our music today is more direct and visceral.
Where do you draw the inspiration for the songs you write?
Agnaldo: all the lyrics I write are results of sensations, situations and everything that is connected with our day by day, existence, hopes, frustrations, deceptions and sadness.
How important do you rate the lyrical side of your albums?
Agnaldo: Very important, because lyrics and melody must to complete each other as a way to provide sensations and pleasure to the listener.
What are your current tour plans, if any?
Agnaldo: Yes, we think very seriously about a tour in Europe, but we know that we need to get a deal to release and promote our music abroad. Its also important we get a good booking agency that can be our partner and assist us in our tour.
Describe your live performance for those who have never seen you live?
Agnaldo: Our live performance mixes intense moments with triping passages and thats what makes our show catchy. I’m always unquiet and calling the audience to participate with the band. Impossible to feel upset in a Serpent Rise’s show.
Do you see as we do that most local radio rarely support the up and coming new bands and even more local bands just starting out?
Agnaldo: I don’t know how the largest radios work, cause I direct Serpent Rise’s music to underground radio programs, aimed for Metal audience; at these station Serpent Rise have been acepted and divulged. The greatest feedback comes from radio programs abroad, but some radio stations in Brazil never let of spread our music.
What do you think of the music industry right now?
Agnaldo: It keeps the same, directing weak minds to passing tendencies and sucking cash from who feeds on fancy trends.
Did you find it hard to break into the business and what was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome?
Agnaldo: we are not in the mainstream, so we can enjoy of a creation freedom for our music, direct and sell it as we like, and if one or many people enjoy it thats a result of our creation capacity and not of a marketing campaign made under fancy trends, you know?
Tell us about your thoughts on your local music scene?
Agnaldo: Well, I will cover much more than my state scene, I speak about the Brazilian scene that have many bands with great technical level. The metal press is strong, distributors, record labels, but everything is done with arms labor cause there is no incentive by our country's rulers. The audience leaves a lot desire too cause it dont shows up at the most underground events e dont make the gear spin.
Are there any new and upcoming bands that you are into?
Agnaldo: Yes , I have an other band called Monochrome Life and we’re preparing material.
How has Social Media impacted your band?
Agnaldo: For a veteran like me, that exchanged letters, the internet brought great tools to optimaze time and make the material share easier. It have been excellent because Sepent Rise’s music can reach places tha we didnt imagine before, like Israel, Greece, etc.
Where can our readers find you on the web?
Agnaldo: Facebook , Instagram , Youtube and Soundcloud basically. We are getting to other plataforms like Bandcamp and Spotify.
What equipment is the band using and do you have any endorsements currently?
Julio: Live I use a Eventide H9 combined with an expression pedal AMT, a ESP Gary Holt Signature guitar or my old japanese Jackson with Gotoh bridge, a great guitar. At my homestudio I have other equipament that helps me at recordings from manufacturers like Strymont, MXR, Stone Deaf, Fire Custom Shop, Two Notes etc… all bought from my pocketn no endorsements.
Thanks for answering these questions. Do you have any last comments for our readers?
Julio: I appreciate immensely for the space given, to our friends, fans and admirers of the good music that prestige our music. Await because Serpent is rising.
Agnaldo: I’d like to thank to Tom Lamb and ITN Magazine for the space given to let us share a little of our history with the readers. I thank you for reading this interview till here. Stay Doom.
© 2019 ITN Magazine. All Rights Reserved. All images are the property of ITN Magazine and may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. without written permission.