Interviews: Moonshade

This is a new interview with the Melodic Extreme Metal band Moonshade from Portugal. Check out the interview and follow the artist on his FACEBOOK PAGE.

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

Actually, my man Pedro, our guitarist, came up with it, together with our previous drummer. At the time, they wanted to portray the frightening melancholy of a forest landscape on a moonlit night. When I came into the band I realized the name had some double entendre, meaning that “shade” can either mean a shadow or a ghost and that, arguably, the “shade” provided by the moon happens when it blocks out the sun during an eclipse. We loved it, it stuck, so there it is, and here we are!

2. Why did you want to play this genre?

We just love heavy music. We all started early on with things like Rammstein, Maiden, Metallica, just punk, rock, and metal in general. I mean, it’s literally designed to feel larger than life. Why wouldn’t someone want to play it?

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

Not at all, our first contact with each other was at a Moonshade audition. I and Pedro are the only two founding members left, and I joined in after the first song ‘Deicide’ was written, and became the first and only lead singer. However, our bass player Nuno has been with us for almost 8 years, one of which is as a keyboard player. We also have two new members that joined us during the pandemic - our guitarist Luís Dias, and our drummer Fernando Maia.

4. Each band member's favorite band?

We don’t really have favorite bands anymore. However, some of the names commonly thrown around the rehearsal room are Amon Amarth, Iron Maiden, Rammstein, Dream Theater, Haken, and Wintersun, those being some of our common tastes as musicians.

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

For us, any art form can be an inspiration, and sometimes it can come out of nowhere when a riff just comes up in your head. In my particular case, literature is my greatest source of inspiration. In this upcoming album, I put in a mix of Greek philosophy and mythology, Renaissance philosophers, famous contemporary thinkers such as Noel Harari, and Richard Dawkins, and even some poetry. I was really getting into T.S. Elliot’s ‘The Waste Land’ when I started writing this, and that really seeped into one of the songs, which happens to be our upcoming single – Everlasting Horizons.

6. Where was your last gig?

About two years ago, at Leiria, and on the final leg of our Iberian tour.

7. Where would you like to act?

To be frank, there is no major European or American festival I wouldn’t love to play, and it’s more than a dream – it’s what we’re aiming at.

8. Whom would you like to feature with?

I, personally, would love to do a feature with artists that have little to do with extreme metal, but that fit the genre. Yungblud would be amazing, also Gerard Way from My Chemical Romance, or Oli Sykes from Bring Me The Horizon. Within extreme metal itself, definitely Will Ramos from Lorna Shore.

9. Whom not?

Anyone with an attitude, famous or otherwise. I have no patience for pseudo-rockstars and our music is not a clutch for anyone’s ego, no one’s that important or talented.

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

Practice as much as you can, and then practice some more, so you’re sure of what the hell you’re doing on stage. There is no excuse for not knowing your own songs. Study the venue and its features beforehand, and get informed. It’s easier to relax when you have a firm grasp on the things you can, in fact, control. As far as the things you can’t control, let me be straight – bad shows will happen, misfortunes will happen, and unfair stuff will happen which might ruin your show. Accept it, and learn to be at peace with the fact that you did your best, and that you’ll try to do better next time. You need tough skin and a mature attitude for this. Sensitivity is best left for writing music, or else you won’t let yourself have fun.

11. What bands have inspired you the most?

Things change, people get older, and start broadening their horizons. Sometimes you even outgrow some of your previous huge sources of inspiration. That being said, the bands that most inspired the band throughout the first half of our existence were probably the melodic death metal greats, like Amorphis, Insomnium, Be’lakor, Amon Amarth, etc. Then we decided to take those wonderful melodic death influences, use them as a basis, strip it all down, mix it with more modern stuff we’ve been listening to, and make Moonshade into a different beast altogether.

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

Once after our car broke down, a fan we had never spoken with before helped us out, and we got the car running again. Right after that, a huge smile on his face, he straight out asked if we wanted to buy some molly. Totally not a common drug in the Portuguese metal scene, it’s more of a nightclub thing.

13. What do you think of your fans?

The ones we know personally are nice, loving, and supportive people, and for us, it’s always a pleasure to entertain them. The general vibe on our shows is prone to give anyone a good time. We’re incredibly lucky!

14. What do you think of our site?

Lovin’ it, especially what you do with the Behind The Artwork and the Track by Tracks, so many important details of the artist’s creative visions are beautifully represented in the artwork, and lyrical and song themes are quite often disregarded in media, so thank you so much for your doing what you do.

15. Something to add?

Moonshade’s sophomore album ‘As We Set The Skies Ablaze’ will be out on July 22 nd, and you can pre-order it now via our web store at Two singles of that album are already out, with three more on the way. Thank you so much for reading, and keep your eyes on the horizon!

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