Power of Metal.dk Interview

Interview with Laurent James - Lord of Mushrooms, March 2012

“Perspectives” is out now! What are the first reactions and your own feelings?

Finally!!!! It was a long process, but this part of the work is over! Actually we are getting  a very good response from the listeners. This is really great. We have received some very good critical reviews too. This is rewarding and encouraging!

Lord of Mushrooms’ three records are very creative and ambitious, with a lot of work back their genesis. But still, ten years between the first and the third one: the reasons?

Well the huge gap is actually between the second Album and this one. The reason is simple, in 2007 I had to rebuild the band from ashes, as the previous band members preferred to try their luck with pop music! Finding new crew members requires a lot of time and is not an easy task...

Are Gus, Luca and Marco super guests or are they hopefully destined to last, in a band which could come with a new record within two years?

They are definitely destined to last! (if we all survive 2012 haha) ! We are  now preparing a tour support , I don't know when though, but it's sure we will release another Album in a shorter time!...

“Perspectives” creation process was long path. Can you tell us about it?

This Album was composed back in 2009, composing wasn't the longest thing to do, what took time was the recording sessions, we recorded the drums in a studio in Italy, then we recorded Guitars, Bass , Keys and Voice at my home studio, then back to Italy to do the  re-amping. Then editing time , going to mix in Toronto matching our schedules with Richard Chycki  (who did a fantastic job by the way)  plus the Mastering by Andy Van Dette in NY,  .....plus the  very special artwork by Travis Smith ... All those things put together make the time longer and longer ... So what takes time in this kind of process is not the creative part which takes between  6 months to 12 months , what takes time is what follows !.

Digital technology gives musicians the possibility to record any instruments or parts anywhere, then put the whole together somewhere else, mixing here, mastering there. 
It is interesting for a cosmopolitan band. Don’t you miss sometimes a good old (almost) live recording, with all musicians at the same place?

Actually Luca (keyboardist) and I were always present when we recorded every single part of the Album, of course the full band wasn't in studio at the same time. Nowadays you need to overdub so many parts, making things very long, so if you are there in the studio waiting for your turn you'd die of boredom... Another thing is that Digital technology gives so many possibilities, It can become anti-productive, you could end up staying in the studio forever, you always want to try new things, not talking when the computer crashes too ... So you need to focus and take decisions otherwise you are stuck.!

I wrote in my humble review (I am just a music fan, not a journalist...) that the special touch in “Perspectives” comes especially from the keyboards, really inspired. Any comment?

It's true we really wanted to hear something different from "traditional" Prog Metal productions ... We are fed up with synths sounds everywhere so we preferred going for a traditional Piano..  which matches with the guitars perfectly... Of course there are some synths sounds too, but we really worked on those, mixing them with real instruments sounds giving some interesting sound textures...

Lion Music is maybe not the biggest record company in the world, but their artists’ catalogue is more than impressive. Can you tell us about your collaboration with your label?

Well we have collaborated with them since 2005, they are really a great Label in whom you can trust, they are passionate about this kind of Music. They really do their best even though it's a  very difficult time for the Music industry...

Can you make a living as a progressive metal band in 2012 when you are not Dream Theater?

No!! mainly we all work in the Music field though, I'm an electric guitar teacher in a Music school, and so is Marco, our Drummer, Luca plays the Clarinet in a Jazz quartet  and Gus has a lot of bands playing gigs as a singer. Julien our Bass player is the only one which preferred working in another field.

Any plans for tour and for summer festivals?

Yes as I said before, we will definitely go on tour, we are busy organizing this at present. As soon as we know something we will inform all our fans.

A final word to close this interview?

Thanx a lot to everyone who enjoyed our new Mushrooms recipe, I hope to see you all at our future gigs...

Lord of Mushrooms - Perspectives

Label: Lion Music.

Link: www.lordofmushrooms.net.


Gustavo “Gus” Monsanto – Vocals
Laurent James – Guitars, Saz, backing vocals
Julien Negro – Bass, backing vocals
Marco Talevi – Drums
Luca Mariotti – Keyboards, clarinet, backing vocals

Perspectives (2012)
7 Deadly Songs (2005)
Lord of Mushrooms (2002)


Interviewed by Philippe Leconte