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Cyber Cross

Het komt nogal eens voor dat je een cd in je handen krijgt en dat je op basis van de hoes, het boekje, de songtitels en de manier waarop de band zich presenteert een beeld vormt voordat je überhaupt ook maar één noot van de muziek hebt gehoord. Daarnaast kan het ook voorkomen dat bijvoorbeeld het land waar zulke bands vandaan komen je al bevooroordeeld. Ik ken zo collegae die bij voorbaat producten uit Italië terzijde schuiven, terwijl ik Italiaanse metalbands redelijk hoog heb zitten omdat die vaak het lef hebben om 'out of the box' te denken. Mijn vooroordeel tegen Italiaanse bands is vaak op het technische vlak: de productie van sommige cd's is soms om te janken zo slecht. Cyber Cross is wat dat betreft een traditioneel Italiaanse band: ze klinken absoluut niet als een dertien in een dozijnbandje, maar ze hebben nog een ander voordeel: een gitarist met een eigen studio die ook nog eens verstand heeft van de knoppen waaraan hij schuift. 'Megatrip' is naar mijn visie het beste metalalbum dat sinds tijden uit Italië is gekomen. Lords Of Metal besloot daarop gitarist Nick Savio eens aan de tand te voelen over Cyber Cross, en dan is het verbazingwekkend om te horen dat hij fan is van Dokken en Van Halen terwijl de band zo'n immens duistere sound heeft.

Door: Wilmar | Archiveer onder different metal

Recently you have released your second album 'Mega Trip' but it is the first time ever that I hear from Cyber Cross. Being an Italian band you immediately raised my expectations, since Italian bands do have a distinct sound of their own, I could mention artists like Ephel Duath, Them Philosophy or Demetra Sine Die that really stand out in comparison with their other European colleagues. Could you tell me in short the history of Cyber Cross and how you see your position in Europe and Italy in particular?
The Cyber history begun on 2005 by me an Camillo Colleluori. We played together for long time in other situations, especially Broken Arrow (Scarlet Records 2003) and Vicious Mary (Frontiers Records 2002). Basically this was just heavy metal, classic, melodic or power, but nothing new okay! So we were bored to play stuff like this and we decide to work on something new and original. So Cyber Cross was born in our mind before to be combined a real band! We know exactly what we want.

You are categorized by your record label as cyber death metal, or death cyber metal, it is something with 'death' and 'cyber' in it. I see your brand of metal as an unholy combination between styles that seem hard to unite. I hear a bit of Nirvana combined with thrash metal, I hear Killing Joke paired with death metal, I hear the more ambient side of a Marilyn Manson in your music. How did you manage to get such a stylistic versatility in your music?
Quite simple, Alex is a fan of Soundgarden, acoustic music, Mike Patton and so on and so forth. I like Dokken and Van Halen but as a producer I'm open to other styles. Camillo likes thrash and classic metal. The result is the Cyber Cross sound. Another characteristic is the guitar. It is a seven strings approach with the first string detuned an octave. So basically is a guitar/bass and I can make really low riffs.

The one thing that freaks me out is the fact that when I start looking for information about Cyber Cross on the World Wide Web, I only come across old info on your MySpace and your record company isn't as informative as well. Is this some kind of mystique you want to create around Cyber Cross or are you guys just plain lazy?
Actually we have an amazing MySpace page and we are promoting our new album on Crash And Burn Records store and on the EMP catalogue. Nothing mystique…

You have released an album before 'Mega Trip' entitled 'Ira'. Could you explain what makes 'Mega Trip' a better, or a different album compared to its predecessor 'Ira'?
'Ira' in our mind is a colossus album. Real big production with “fat” drum sound etcetera. With 'Megatrip' we carry on our artistic side to its maximum together with Cyber Cross sound. On the next one we are planning some acoustic songs. We are constantly in evolution and Crash And Burn Records likes this.

Cyber Cross seems to have an explosive live reputation. Haven't you considered the release of a live DVD to bring that energy across, since studio recordings are sometimes a bit limiting that it only appeals to the auditive side of man's senses and not the visual one… In other words: how do you try to captivate the live energy on such a rigid medium as a cd?
A DVD would be great but actually in Italy is impossible realize this. The extreme scene is too much underground. Live energy on the record is not a problem for us. I'm the owner of Remaster Studio so we don't have problems to work on our recording session without stress.

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You have recorded 'Mega Trip' in Nick Savio's own studio, which should have given you a lot of freedom to work on the album. There is no label breathing down your neck about the costs of the studio and it relieves the pressure of working on the album. To be honest, 'Mega Trip' is the best production I have heard coming from Italy since a long time. How long have you spent in the studio and when do you know it's time to let the album 'go'?
We spent almost two months at the studio. We usually build the song in the studio because we like work on the songs with definite sounds. I'm also one of the owners of Crash And Burn Records. So we have no stress, no “label breathing down your neck”, nothing, nothing! Just art, music, guitar, beer, wine, pizza and fun hehehe.

One thing that struck me about Cyber Cross is the rubber vocal chords of your singer Alex Bevivino. He has a wide range from the more melodic styles to the really screaming like a Devin Townsend but also the low parlando like Jonathan Davis does best. The vocal style suites the music really well. Has Alex had any training whatsoever?
That's just an instrument. He knows his voice very well and he does just what he is able to do.That's great for me, not just for singer but for every musician. Do what you do best and be yourself! No secrets or trainers, Alex simply does it.

Alex also is one of the artists that has worked on the visual side of the new album, but there are no lyrics in the booklet. Are you as a band more a visual band than a conceptual one?
No, Alex sometimes use his voice like an instrument and in some parts he doesn't follow a real lyric. That the way I like. Use the vocals like an instrument.

One of the ways to promote your music is through video clips, and since I suspect that Cyber Cross is a very visually motivated band, I was wondering if there are plans for a video and what we can expect from you.
Maybe with our 3rd album. At the moment we are working on new material because on the next album we would like to be Cyber Cross at the maximum and if necessary we'll release this next on after another two years. We don't like to have schedule for our music. We will see ….

With two albums out now, it should be time for a European tour, but those tours are quite an expensive undertaking. Are you guys going to be able to play some more outside of Italy, or are you still condemned to play within the borders of your native country?
To get a deal with a good booking agency you need a top seller album. I don't believe in supporting bands for a little tour. I'd like to support some great band. Actually a lot of bands pay thousands of euros for a support tour of semi-unknown bands. For me this is not a good deal. I got a great tour in Germany with Grave Digger in 1999, and that was a great tour!

In my review of 'Mega Trip' I expressed that I had to get used to the album before I really started to appreciate it. Now there is always a first impression and if it takes you longer to get used to music, you could miss out on an entire audience. Would you consider making your music easier accessible to reach a greater audience or is that an explicit no-go zone for you?
Absolutely not!

Could you tell me what your most immediate plans are for the future?
Our 3rd album.

Final question: there are a lot of venues in The Netherlands that organize festivals with six or more bands. There is this particular venue whose programmer has heard of Cyber Cross and he wants to book you for one show only. Are you going to make the journey for this one gig, or are you going to try to score some more gigs and make it a mini-tour?
Just one is okay. We like to play where people and venue owner want hear our music. Let me know we are ready to rock!

Thanks for the interview, good luck and hopefully we see each other when you come touring.
Thanks Wilmar…Grazie mille!

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