Interview with guitarist Alex Mele, Kaledon (June 4th 2008)

For the real Powermetalfreaks the Italian band Kaledon should need no introduction. For those who do not know the band yet, a little introduction. Kaledon was born at the end of the 90's. The new album to come out is their fifth one. On this new record you can also hear the new singer Marco Palazzi. This is the fifth story about the "Legend of the Forgotten Reign". Just before the release powerofmetal found it time to ask Alex Mele some things about the new release.

Hello Alex, congratulations with your new record. There isn't yet an exact releasedate, how come?

Alex Mele: Hi there! Thank you so much for the compliments... I really appreciate it. Well the release date will come very soon I hope... we have a little problem with the artwork data files but nothing big.. our staff needs only some more days.

Why did Claudio Conti (former singer) leave the band?

Alex: ... for big personal problems!  We asked to him many times to try to change his life-style and become more similar to us, but after many tentatives nothing has changed, therefore this solution was the only right one.

Marco Palazzi is your new singer, in what bands did he sing before and how did you find him?

Alex: Oh well.. he sang in a band named Nobody's Fool and actually he plays piano in a blues band! We met him the first time in January 2007 when Nobody's Fool was Kaledon's opening act.

What is in your opinion the biggest difference between your new singer and Claudio?

Alex: That's very easy to explain. Claudio was a great singer with a great vocal range... in some high screams very similar to Kai Hansen but.. he was a one way singer... I mean ... he sang only in that way, never a falsetto pat, never a dirty vocal part, only and always clean and high vocals! Marco instead has a very different voice, he has not Claudio's range but we absolutely don't care about it. We love Marco's voice, it is more know.. more rock!

I saw that you wrote all the songs this time, on Chapter IV, Claudio also got some credits. Are you the only one in the band left that can write songs? Or are you such a dictator?

Alex: Claudio wrote some lyrics under my supervision and after that we wrote together the music on the lyrics! Kaledon are a big family and all the members are equal.. I am not a dictator.. I wrote the big saga behind our music, therefore I have very clear ideas about the lyrics and the music. When I write a new song all the band collaborate with me in the most important part.. the final arrange. I receive many and many ideas form David (drummer), from Daniele (keyboards) and from Marco (vocals). Of  course often also Paolo (bass) and Tommy (guitar) give their ideas here and there!

The biggest difference to the last album is the Hammond kind of organs used and there are songs that rock more, for example 'The End of the Green'. It is a little less: just powermetal. What is your opinion about this?

Alex: You're right!!  With chapter IV we made our best power metal album, therefore we started to look other ways for this one. I mean..we thought are we able to do only powermetal songs? Of course the answer was NO.. Chapter V isn't the new musical way of Kaledon, it's just a new album.. Probably the next one will be different again. We like it a lot to change!

Is the story about 'Legend of the forgotten Reign' almost done, or is there going to be a Chapter VI also?

Alex: Chapter IV will be the last of the "Legend of the Forgotten Reign" saga.

The album is going to be released through Hellion Records. Satisfied with that label?

Alex: Yes, this new album will be released via Hellion Records in Europe, via Disk Heaven in Asia and will be distributed in America via Nightmare Records! For now we are satisfied with Hellion Records, but with the new album we'll expect more and strong force from them.. we need more promotion, more live dates and other things...

What are the plans for the near future, are you going to tour Europe? And how come I don't see you on the bill of the Summer festivals, is there no interest in good powermetal?

Alex: of Course we'll play as much as we can! And to answer your other question: do you know the word MAFIA?? That's me... I prefer not to say anything more!

How is your popularity in Italy compared to for example Rhapsody of Fire?

Alex: We are one of the most important Italian Power metal bands after Labyrinth, Vision Divine and Rhapsody.., they are only more lucky, you know. More money for promotions and things like that. You have to know that when we started Kaledon at the end of the 90's, not less than 20 other bands were born together with us. Today we are the only survivors of those bands. I have never heard anything about those bands. I hope they are still alive but.. no more news comes from them. Kaledon is the only Italian band (except the biggest band) with 5 full lenght albums!

Do you all have regular jobs next to Kaledon?

Alex: Yes.

What are your heroes when it comes to guitar playing (influences)?

Alex: Oh.. my first and unique daily inspiration is Brian May from Queen..

What are your top five albums ever? (and don't say Kaledon I-V) hehe

1) Queen - A Night at the Opera
2) Iron Maiden - The Number of the Beast
3) Pink Floyd - The Dark Side of the Moon
4) Deep Purple - Machine Head
5) Stratovarius - Episode

You can here answer the question that no interviewer ever asked you about, but you always wanted us, or the fans to know.

Alex: My first book about the Reign of Kaledon is now available! For the moment only in Italian, but I'm working on an English translation for you guys.. or... if someone would like to translate in any other language...just ask the original version!

Thans for the interview, I wish you all the best.

Alex: Thanks to you.. you are very welcome.. See you around..MAY THE DRAGON BE WITH YOU..

Interviewer: Reinier de Vries

Kaledon - A New Era Begins (Chapter V)

Album soon available on Hellion Records