Eldritch – Avoiding the Trend TrainSunday, 29th November 2015
Dead Rhetoric: You’ve mentioned in past interviews that the lyrics you develop are kind of like an open diary to your life. Do you ever worry that sometimes you get a little too open about your thoughts, visions, and feelings – or do you feel that it’s important because of that human connection that can occur?
Holler: I think that the most of our fans like my lyrics. This is because anybody can fit their lives into mine. The issues I’m going through are common in almost everybody. Yes, maybe sometimes somebody says I’m too open and I show my heart to the world, but that’s how it is. I’m totally unable to act in a different way. I’m 100% what you read and hear. And on the other hand, I’m not too into fantasy stories or politics or social things. So what can I write about that I’m sure nobody can say I’m wrong?? Only myself, my feelings and thoughts.
Dead Rhetoric: How do you feel about your abilities as a vocalist from the start of Eldritch to now? And who are some of the singers that you’ve studied and loved – either for their studio or live abilities?
Holler: I’m pretty satisfied. I think I developed my own style- I’m not too cheesy or too aggressive, I’ve got many influences but at the same time I don’t copy anybody. My main ‘teachers’ were Billy Joel, Joe Jackson, Ray Alder, James Hetfield, Mike Patton, Jon Bon Jovi and David Coverdale. I also listen to some pop stuff like Maroon 5, Michael Jackson and early Madonna! This is because I like their vocal approach. Anyway, my super favorite singer (studio and live) is Ray Alder, he is ‘the voice’.
Dead Rhetoric: What do you consider some of the Eldritch highlights throughout your 25 year career? Will there be any special anniversary shows to celebrate this milestone?
Holler: If we’re still alive and kickin’ I think that in 2018 we could do the 20 year El Niño anniversary tour! (It) would be great! I love all our 10 albums and the first three are my favorites plus this new one. I don’t have a clue in how long we will still be around so maybe a good El Niño 20th anniversary tour in 2018 could also be a good farewell. I don’t know, I’ll be getting close to 50 years old by that time and the career depends on many factors. We’ll see, one day at a time!
Dead Rhetoric: For a long time in Italy, it seemed like there were a number of bands who were heavily influenced by Dream Theater. Would you say the Italian metal scene has broken away from the mold and established a lot of its own trademarks?
Holler: Oh yeah, Italy has a bunch of top level metal acts and the biggest ones (Lacuna Coil and Rhapsody) are not Dream Theater’s children! I can’t say the same for many other bands which are yes, good, but not so unique. I like a lot of them and together with my friends Lacuna Coil and Rhapsody I would put DGM and Eldritch!! The rest are all good but still have that kind of Dream Theater or Stratovarius sound, especially in the vocals- but of course, this is my taste and personal opinion. Lacuna Coil are absolutely the real rock stars that came from our country. Total respect!
Dead Rhetoric: How important is friendship and band chemistry to achieving longevity in the music business? And how do you handle tension or disagreements should they arise?
Holler: Ah ha! This is a huge problem! This is why only Eugene and I are the only members since the first demo! We are friends even besides music. It’s really hard to handle the tension sometimes and it’s even harder to share thoughts or ideas sometimes. Fights are almost daily during tours or recordings if you’re not good friends! This is why a lot of bands split. We never really went close to quitting but we painfully decided to get rid of the rotten eggs. Eugene and I have good chemistry, he writes the music and sends the files to me, I take a bottle of rum and start writing the vocal notes and the words. No problems, a perfect chemistry- myself and the rum (laughs). This current line-up though, is nearly perfect. We’re all friends and I think we could work together fine for some more years to come.
Dead Rhetoric: What are you currently enjoying as far as music when you have time to listen (metal or otherwise)? And what have been some of your favorite concert memories purely as an audience member?
Holler: I listen to the radio! I like everything that has a good singer. Let’s say I like Maroon 5, and some old pop icons like Prince, Madonna, Michael Jackson, Christina Aguilera, or also Lady Gaga and The Muse. The last band I saw at a show was my friend Robb Flynn’s Machine Head. Really awesome guys and band! I saw tons of bands and also shared the stage with the Scorpions, Megadeth, Savatage, Judas Priest, Mötley Crüe, Manowar and many others. Too many to mention and even more difficult to choose the best one. My best memories are the backstage stories – having a snack with the Scorpion guys or taking a dump in Manowar’s bathroom! Ah ha, their manager is still looking for us!
Dead Rhetoric: Do bands ever come up to you looking for advice – and if so, what words of wisdom or ideas do you like to impart on them?
Holler: Yes, of course, some new acts come up to me for some advice… and wanna know what I tell them? To look for a job! Yes, because nowadays it’s quite impossible to live off of music! I just tell them to do things with the heart, without thinking about money. At least you could have fun. I don’t feel (the need) to tell them that maybe one day they’ll have success or other positive things, because there ain’t nothing so positive in the music business anymore. I like to be honest. So my advice for newcomers is do what you like and do it without thinking too much, use your instincts!
Dead Rhetoric: How does your family feel about Eldritch? Are they proud of your accomplishments?
Holler: Well, I only got my mom (my dad passed away right after our debut album) and she’s so-so about my music life. She’d prefer to see me married and staying home at night with slippers on! I live in my mansion with my little son, but no girlfriend at the moment. I’ve got 100% custody of my seven year old boy and he’s proud of me! He goes on the web and clicks my name and is happy to see all the images about his daddy. He also tells his schoolmates about his American dad that acts like a rock star! He still believes in fairytales, but in the end everybody respects my decision to be a rock/metal singer. My mom doesn’t agree only about the wild parties that go on at my house during summertime. You could imagine why (laughs)!
Dead Rhetoric: What does the rest of 2015 and first part of 2016 look like for Eldritch in terms of live shows and promotional activities? Any hopes to get back to the United States for festival action or a short tour?
Holler: Well, we already are starting to tour Italy, then hope to go around the rest of Europe and especially hope to come to the US again. Hopefully some fest or maybe a little tour. We got a good fan base there now and maybe a short tour in small clubs could be something we could do. We’re also playing some acoustic mini shows on some television shows. The new album is having a great response so far, so let’s beat the iron while it’s boiling hot. We wish to come back to ProgPower Atlanta again. Who knows??
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