Interview with Ivano Spiga (Guitars), Holy Martyr (October 24th 2008)

Power of - I am pretty sure most of our readers do not know your background, so could you start by telling us a bit about you and your musical background…

Ivano -Holy Martyr is a classic heavy metal band that started to compose songs during the 90’s. After some line up changes, the band finally found good members in 2000, and then suddenly started to do serious works. After three self financed demos they released the first album Still at War under Dragonheart records, followed just after one year from Hellenic Warrior Spirit.

Power of – The album has only been out a few weeks, what kind of expectations do you have for it?

Ivano - I must admit that we have great expectations, we have worked a lot and we are receiving more interest than in the past. We are not thinking to sell millions of copies, but we are very satisfied with the result and we like to gain new people interested in us finally, nothing more.

Power of – How has the response been so far?

Ivano - In Italy very good...both from the audience and the magazines, the same is more or less in Germany and Greece, we are receiving a good response also in places like France and Spain...generally, for the people that know us from the first album...we are more well accepted, but there is a great enthusiasm from new people.

Power of – What would you tell a total stranger, if he asks what kind of music you play?

Ivano - Classic Heavy the vein of Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath Dio era...with a strong Epic atmosphere in the lyrics. A band with personality, an unusual voice and a good feeling.

Power of - Who has produced and mixed the album? How does the final result compare to the idea you had going into the studio?

Ivano -Luigi Stefanini from The New Sin studios...the same producer of Domine, Labyrinth, Vision Divine. He is surely one of the best...if not the best producer ever in Italy. We have done the right choice and it was fantastic to work with him. We entered in the studios with some ideas...but he did made great arrangements, I liked what he was doing...and sometimes the changes made were better than our first idea. It’s very unusual to find a producer that understand what you wanna put on your music, this time we had lucky to find the right man!!!

Power of - Tell us a bit about artwork…

Ivano - The artwork was made by Simona Ercole, the same artist of the first album. With her help we are trying to have a trademark also on the front cover, it’s very unusual to use the white and the colours she gave to the painting. We like a lot the new job; it’s perfect for the music on the album.

Power of - Holy Martyr – any special story behind your name?

Ivano - I was searching a name bonded to Epic tales...the figure of the martyr is what you find on many fantasy book for example, someone with a noble spirit which give his life. It’s Epic and at the same time melancholic. The US band Omen has a song with the same title, so it was perfect to use this moniker.

Power of - What’s the ambition for the band on a longer term?

Ivano - As I said before, we haven’t particularly ambitions. We like to play alive, to record new album, we are fine in this way, and we don’t want became rock stars. We only would like to play often outside our country.

Power of - What are the best and worst trends in metal today?

Ivano - I don’t know how to say!!! I don’t like to follow trends; I like people and bands with style and a trend is never good. The worst is maybe to see all those guys with strange hair, playing some kind of ‘’emo’’ metal, it makes me sick sorry!

Power of – You are told that you are going to take part in an experiment where you have to live seclude for a month, and are allowed to take either 5 books or 5 albums with you. What do you choose and what would you have taken along with you and why?

Ivano - Ok...Lord of the Rings, the Silmarillion, Gates of Fire, Dune and some book by Asimov. About the albums...Operation Mindcrime, The Number of the Beast, Master of Puppets, Painkiller, Back in Black, Heaven and Hell. Why? I like this stuff!

Power of - Thank you very much for answering my questions. Do you have any last rants for our readers?

Ivano - Thanks to you! I only would like to suggest to guys which never listened the band, to find our music without hearing it. I used to do this when I was a kid, discovering new bands just watching the front covers and imagining the music on it. It was something simple, maybe risky and surely magic. I think that Holy Martyr deserve to be discovered, we have something to say!


Holy Martyr - Hellenic Warrior Spirit

Album available on Dragonheart Records.