Blazing Desert Metal takes over Bucharest – Myrath and Eleine

Blazing Desert Metal descended upon Bucharest with Myrath and Eleine enchanting us for a night.

Eleine are the perfect opener for Myrath, close enough in style. After all, we do see their frontwoman, Madeleine Liljestam , in a traditional bellydance outfit. And boy does she put on a show! The songs are interesting and it makes for a nice show for those who don’t know them. Very visually pleasing. Unfortunately, the sound was quite bad, with drums cranked all the way up and vocal lines indistinguishable at times. Guitarist Rikard Ekberg deserves some praise for his really great interaction with the public.

Myrath are no strangers to Romania and they packed Quantic Club once again. This was my 4th time seeing them and I was really excited because they have been growing so much and their show has become so much more. It’s not every day that you see a band bring their own carpets and pillows on stage :))

The sound got better for their but not ideal and the lights were a real struggle for photographers, since they never actually light up Zaher and he got a bit lost behind the smoke.

Back to the good parts, the guys delivered! I truly love their attention to detail and their commitment to bring something extra and to do something special. This tour they have been bringing their producer Kevin Codfert on stage to join in on keytar (portable keyboards) for a couple of songs. They have a lovely bellydancer who just kept getting better and better throughout the show.

And as if that is not enough, they even had an illusionist! Yes, imagine floating sticks and tables and even floating Zaher!

They actually put thought into bringing props and creating interesting costumes. So glad to see men be creative about how they dress on stage and not just get away with basic tshirt and jeans combo.

But enough about that, let’s get to the music! That’s why we’re here after all. Their setlist took us through their albums, including all the well known hits such as “Tales of the Sands”, “Endure the Silence”, “Believer” and the very strong songs off their latest album which are already classics: “Dance”, “Born to Survive”, “No holding back”, “Monster in My Closet” and obviously the title song “Shehili”. Though I think I would have liked them to start with a stronger bang to match all the craziness already on stage.
I have to admit I don’t know all their songs that well, but even for those I didn’t know it was such a pleasure to listen and watch!

The whole show is just such a great ride with so many things happening that make it memorable. Truly, it is an experience to take part in more than just a number of songs played. I was pleasantly surprised to see that they filled Quantic and people really joined in for the fun. They also announced that they would be coming back to Romania with their new album, so I am excited! This tour saw them go to Brasov as well, so the future looks very bright!

Myrath revine în România pentru două concerte memorabile!​

Iată că în 2020 încheiem iarna cu două concerte călduroase: MYRATH revine în România pentru a susține două concerte memorabile în București și Brașov alături de un invitat special: Eleine.

Pe data de 28 februarie 2020 ne vedem în clubul Quantic din București, iar pe 29 februarie, în clubul Rockstadt din Brașov, unde vom întâmpina primăvara cu una dintre cele mai călduroase formații metal.
Cu un stil propriu de progressive metal îmbinat cu influențe orientale, incredibil de personal chiar, Myrath a devenit încet-încet una dintre cele mai fascinante formații de pe scena internațională, iar acum revin în România. Aducând împreună influențe progressive și ritmuri catchy, ultimul lor album, „Shehili”, combină muzica arabă și bucăți groovy din „Tales Of The Sands” (2011) cu aranjamente muzicale lucrate cu grijă și structuri intrigante din cea mai recentă operă, „Legacy” (2016).
Inovativ și totuși fidel sunetului specific Myrath, „Shehili” îndrăznește să stabilească un contrast între melodii vesele și versuri extrem de bine gândite, dar triste. Acest aspect se poate observa cel mai bine în „Dance”, piesă care spune povestea „unui dansator sirian care primește amenințări cu moartea de la Isis, dar a ales să continue să danseze, chiar dacă asta însemna să danseze printre ruine și morminte”, așa cum spune Zaher Zorgati. „Țelul muzicii noastre este să inducă fericire și bucurie, să fie un tribut pentru cei care refuză să cadă sau să se oprească din a spera, chiar și într-o lume plină de ură și incertitudine.”
Departe de clișeele care se regăsesc la multe formații metal moderne, “Shehili”, deși produs cu o grijă extraordinară, păstrează o aromă organică și naturală. Tobele au fost înregistrate în Hamburg, Germania, de Eike Freese (Deep Purple, Gamma Ray), părțile de vioară – datorită chiar Orchestrei Simfonice din Tunisia – au fost trase în Tunis, iar restul albumului a fost înregistrat de Kevin Codfert care s-a asigurat că absolut fiecare notă și-a găsit locul.

„Shehili” a fost produs cu pasiune și o deosebită atenție la detalii de trei producători: Codfert, Freese și Jens Bogren (a mai lucrat și la „Legacy”), astfel fiecare piesă a primit cel mai bun tratament.
Acum, ce înseamnă „Shehili” vă întrebați? Acest cuvânt arab enigmatic și poetic e numele unui vânt antic care vine tocmai din dunele Saharei. Atingerea blândă a unei brize care-ți șoptește legende la ureche și-ți deschide calea către vise… N-aveți de ales, trebuie să ascultați aceste minunate melodii și să vă pierdeți în ele.

Cu simfonii armonioase, heavy metal și un show live captivant, Eleine a devenit una dintre cele mai apreciate formații metal tinere care oferă un spectacol ce nu trebuie ratat. Încă de la lansarea albumului de debut în 2015 și al doilea album, „Until The End” în 2018 care s-a aflat pe locul 1 în topurile de vânzări suedeze, au fost ocupați cu turnee europene, în Japonia și Marea Britanie ca headlineri, dar și ca support act pentru formații ca W.A.S.P., Moonspell sau Arch Enemy.
Biletele, în număr limitat, se pot achiziționa exclusiv de pe la următoarele prețuri:80 lei 59 lei – Earlybird (preț redus pentru primele 50 bilete)80 lei 69 lei – Presale (preț redus pana pe data de  28 februarie, inclusiv)80 lei – Acces (preţ în ziua evenimentului, atât online cât și la intrare)
Taxa de procesare: 5 lei / bilet.

Everything worth having requires a sacrifice of some sort: interview with Elyes Bouchoucha

I have been following Myrath for some years now and I could not be happier to see them get more and more successful. Their latest album, “Shehili” took the charts by storm (pun intended – Shehili is the name of an ancient wind, coming all the way from the dunes of Sahara). Oriental metal never sounded this good, but the band did not start with just creating a strong album and went forward to a huge production of live shows. With fire jugglers, belly dancers and even an illusionist, their show caught everyone’s attention and earned them the headline spot at Sweden Rock Festival.

We caught up with Elyes Bouchoucha (keyboards) to find out more about their album and future plans, plus some fun questions to get to know him better.

Teen Art Out: With each album you expect a bigger and better response, but with this one it was really there. Do you find it to be more an acknowledgement and recognition of everything so far, or is it just a starting point?

Elyes Bouchoucha: It is both really, because on one hand we have been working really hard over the past years to reach the level we have reached today and by consequence the recognition or acknowledgment, and on the other hand it is also a starting point for Myrath as the forerunner of this unique genre of Blazing Desert Metal.

Teen Art Out: At any time during the process of a new album, do you go back and listen to the previous records to perhaps compare or see where the new one would be placed?

Elyes: We have all of our music imprinted on our minds and, to be honest, after these many years we reached a point where we can immediately recognize a tune or compare to a previous melody when discussing a new one.

Teen Art Out: You have talked a lot about your great relationship with producer Kevin Codfert and now the lyricists you have worked with. How easy is it for you to let others come into your project? I imagine sometimes egos must be put aside to recognize other people’s creative input.

Elyes: To put it in a manner that is related to our latest album Shehili, our creative process is somewhat of a collective sandstorm of creative ideas; we start with a lot of input swirling around and then move ahead by selecting what we think is best to work with and refining the rest further. It is more of a team work and everybody has a say. Our work has always been like this, a family effort where there is no place for egos because our mutual goal is Myrath’s music and its success rather than individual victories or recognition.

Teen Art Out: “Believer” was such a huge and amazing video, which now got two sequels in “Dance” and “No Holding Back”. When did you first think of the songs and videos as a trilogy?

Elyes: We always thought that we need to have a sequel to Believer as we liked the idea of Myrath’s members in an alternate reality, especially after we saw the huge positive feedback from fans and critics. The idea then came while working on Shehili, we thought it was best to build on what we already started with Believer and Zaher’s peculiar objects that transports to other realms. 

Teen Art Out: How strange is it to work with as many visual effects?

Elyes: It is very exciting to work with CGI because you can never know what the final result would be until you see it, we have to work with imagination and a green screen while hoping for the best. The results were awesome although we definitely hope to reach Game of Thrones CGI level one day, Haha!

Teen Art Out: Last year you had an extremely impressive concert at “Festival International de Carthage”, with thousands of people cheering for you in your home country. How have the international tours and success influenced the way you are received in Tunisia?

Elyes: It is not only due the international touring and growing recognition but also the amazing support of our fans in Tunisia who came in their thousands for the 3 festival concerts we did in 2017, and that of course helped in having us play Carthage International Festival 2018 as the first metal band to ever feature in the prestigious festival.

Photo credit: Nidhal Marzouk

Teen Art Out: How long does it take you when you’re back from tour to miss being on tour?

Elyes: About a day or two! Haha. It is very rewarding to be on the road with the band and getting to meet our large family of Myrath’s fans in a new city every day, it is an experience like no other and despite the tiresome daily routine of packing, unpacking and moving from city to city, once it is over I miss it immediately.

Teen Art Out: What are some pieces of home you would like to find wherever you travel? It can be places, ideas, customs, foods, anything.

Elyes: I love travel and I am very interested in exploring new places, cities, food, and customs. I do not look for home in the places I visit but rather try to experience them in their own way. I always make sure to try the local coffee wherever I go as I am a coffee addict J I also like to try new food and get to know the local areas and shops. I especially enjoy taxi rides when the local radio would be on and I get to listen to the music of the country we are in.

Teen Art Out: What are some of the things people cannot understand about being an active touring musician until they become one?

Elyes: The hectic speedy tempo of the daily routine where everything must be done in the fastest time possible to ensure being on time for the show. Life on tour is a very special experience and I honestly think you need to experience it for yourself to fully realise what it means. It is exhausting and exciting in equal measures and every day is an adventure in itself.

Teen Art Out: One of the themes we have dealt in our issues is “Art Kills”. Must Art be a sacrifice to be true and real? There is of course the myth of the lone and misunderstood artist.

Elyes: I came to realise that everything worth having requires a sacrifice of some sort. If you want to get good grades in school for example, you will have to sacrifice your leisure time and spend it studying instead. Art is similar in this aspect; if you are to connect to your creative spirit and produce art then you must be willing to sacrifice long hours of solitude and hard work. I do not think that ‘Art Kills’ per say, but it does require a great deal of effort and energy to produce it, you might be lonely at times or you may feel misunderstood but when the final result comes out, you will realise it was worth every moment. The outcome is always rewarding and worth your sacrifices.

Teen Art Out: How competitive would you say you are as a person? Is it safe to play Monopoly (or other games) with you 😊?

Elyes: I don’t think of myself as being competitive but I do enjoy a good challenge! It is definitely safe to play Monopoly with me but you should also bring out your best game because I won’t make it easy, I play to win! haha.

Teen Art Out: What is your limit for adventure-seeking? Do you go on the scariest rides in an amusement park, would ever skydive?

Elyes: The scarier the better! I love a good adrenaline rush and I always go for the adventures that push my fear limits further. I would definitely try skydiving one day when the opportunity comes.

Finally, thank you very much for this nice chat and stay blazing desert metal 😉

Interview by Simona Mihalca