Interviews: Cruel Juno


On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the  Hard Rock project Cruel Juno from the USA. Check out the interview and follow the band on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

1. Where did you get the idea for the band name, you planned it or came out just like that?

I discovered Gandolfo Ferro, who sings on most of our songs, through listening to him on HEIMDALL’s amazing concept album, “Aeneid,” which is based on the epic poem by Virgil. The name CRUEL JUNO is a direct reference to the Aeneid, and is also meant to honor Gandolfo and Luca Princiotta (of DORO, who plays guitar on most songs) being from Italy/Sicily.

2. Why did you want to play this genre?

I grew up listening to hard rock and metal. The guys I’m playing with on this project all come from bands that I like and listen to. You could say that this whole project is one big excuse to get to jam with them, and you wouldn’t be far from the mark.

3. Did you know each other before the band was formed?

Some I simply messaged or emailed. Others I met when they came through on tour, like Luca Princiotta. I do some writing on the side, and had an interview liked up with Doro Pesch, and the day’s plans were not going well... I wasn’t even sure if the interview was going to happen. I ended up spending an incredibly great day with the band, though - and later took off with Luca to find some pizza. We stayed in touch after. And I did finally get that interview! Doro was amazing! To meet Fabio Lione, though – I plotted. LOL. I bought a VIP ticket to see him with ANGRA, and instead of taking selfies, I spent my two minutes talking to him about CRUEL JUNO and asking if he’d be interested in doing a song with me. It worked! And just yesterday we closed a deal to do another one – so be prepared for more CRUEL JUNO fronted by the legendary Fabio Lione!

4. Each band member favorite band?

Mine was JUDAS PRIEST for many, many years. I taught myself to play drums by jamming along to “British Steel.” I’ve been fortunate enough to meet them, and have talked with Glenn Tipton a few times, who remains my guitar hero. I would emulate him as much as possible if I played guitar instead of drums. I can’t speak for any of the other musicians, really. We’re spread all over the world. I do know that Gandolfo is a big fan of KAMELOT, and it was great to see his excitement when Oliver Palotai (who plays keyboards for them) played on our newest track, “Wound Too Tight.”

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

Years ago, I moved to Nashville and thought I might have a go at being a professional drummer. A successful producer pulled me aside and basically said, “Don’t quit your day job.” He basically explained how slim my chances of success were, and how little money I could expect to realistically make. I took his advice and left Nashville. But ever since, I have been constantly haunted by a feeling of being “left behind” or “missing out.” I see drummers I’ve met and they’re out on tour while I’m working a normal job, and it haunts me. It haunts me that I never took my shot. And now here is my chance, at least in some form, to take that shot. To make music with people who are far better than me, and for the rest of my life know that I finally make great music with musicians I love.

6. Where was your last gig?

Church. If you’re thinking, “No, that doesn’t count!” then you haven’t been in a big church in the USA lately. These are paying, professional gigs. Much higher tech than any local bar-band stuff. We use IEMs with a click and backing tracks. The music is modern pop-rock and you need be wearing your big-boy pants to play it, because if you get lost or get off the click, you are SCREWED. It’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me drum-wise. It’s really improved my studio skills and my overall timing.

7. Where would you like to perform?

Wacken Open Air, of course!

8. Whom would you like to perform with?

Any of the guys I’ve recorded with – Luca, Gandolfo, Oliver, Fabio, etc. It would be scary, though. I don’t get stage-fright, but these guys are top-knotch, and I’d be thinking, “can I play well enough to not embarrass myself?!”

9. Whom not?

Anyone evil or unkind.

10. Any of you has ever suffered from stage fright? Any tip for beginners on how to beat that?

I’ve been nervous, but never to the point where I couldn’t go on. Now, I don’t get stage fright at all, no matter how big the crowd is. For anyone wanting to overcome it, start small. Have a couple friends hang out during rehearsal. Then have 5 friends hang out during rehearsal. Play at a church where it’s easy to have the mindset “oh this doesn’t count because I’m at church and it’s not really a gig.” Then do some outdoor shows because that can also feel like, “still not a real gig – I’m just in a park and people are walking by.” Etc. And when you’re not scared of those crowds, you’ll be much more prepared for a stage where everyone IS looking at you and waiting for you to start. And you can tell yourself, “This one doesn’t really count either.” And then just go for it. Once the first song or two is over, it gets much easier.

11. What bands have inspired you the most?

JUDAS PRIEST. More recently I draw a lot of inspiration from Italian metal bands like ETERNAL IDOL, VISION DIVINE, TEMPERANCE, etc.

12. What's the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

My shirt.

13. What do you think of your fans?

I am AMAZED at who loves our music – because I am primarily promoting through Facebook, and I have no idea who is going to listen. And then I start seeing likes from countries all over the world. Brazil makes up a large percent of our listeners, and then eastern Europe. I am constantly using Google Translate to respond to people in Portuguese, Serbian, and Russian. It blows my mind! 

14. What do you think of our site?

I love the SUB-GENRES! It really makes sorting through everything so easy. I just need a POWER METAL tab – or are you dumping them into MELODIC METAL?

15. Something to add?

Our first EP, “Playing With Monsters” will be released Jan 10. Available online everywhere. Very limited CDs will be available through crueljuno.com. Here's the links to our brand new “Wound Too Tight” lyric video on Facebook and YouTube:

FB: https://www.facebook.com/crueljuno/videos/2433587356904085/
YT: https://youtu.be/9p8JXWTxpCI

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