Interviews: Reign Of Fire

On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the Crossover/Metal/Hard Rock band Reign Of Fire from the USA. Check out this band and follow them on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

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

The band had no name for a while. We had completed the first song, Reign of Fire, and in the days leading to submission to the distributor and completing the music video, we bounced around hundreds of possible band names, and nothing grabbed us. The first song really struck a chord with all of us in terms of the great writing chemistry, so Rob, the guitarist, said, “hey, what about using Reign of Fire? It seems to fit us.” We were all in immediate agreement.

2. Why did you wanna play this genre?

It was just a natural fit for us. We have all been playing for almost all of our lives, and progressive hard rock and metal are much more challenging, so we find anything else to lack the excitement, and the personal challenge that progressive metal offers. Don’t get me wrong, we love all styles of music and try to incorporate different genres, styles, and influences in each song. This is just where we are most comfortable, it’s good to operate outside our comfort zone and push the envelope.

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

Yes, we’ve each had a connection to at least one other member from previous bands. Pete Bartolomei (drummer) and I (Joe Booe, vocals) grew up together, literally 1 block away from each other, and spent 10 years together in the band StrictNine. Rob Christman (guitars, keyboards, synths) and I played together, in the band Geneva, 30 years ago. Pete and Jim Davidge (bass) played together in Skullcandy and Markette.

4. Each band member’s favorite band?

We have quite a few for each of us. Joe Booe’s top 5 are Queensryche, Dream Theater, Iron Maiden, Rainbow, and Black Sabbath. Pete Bartolomei’s are Queensryche, Dream Theater, Animals as Leaders, Iron Maiden, and Judas Priest. Rob Christman (class clown) says his are The Monkees, The Backstreet Boys, One Direction, and The Partridge Family. Jim Davidge has been a big fan of Rush, Triumph, Queensryche, Disturbed, and Zeppelin.

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

I don’t know that any one person, or group of people, inspires us. We find inspiration in the human condition and history. Our album is a concept, based on a soldier who has been wounded in battle and is trapped in the unconscious mind, between insanity and death, and experiencing past lives and deaths. This has given us the chance to write about the human mental state, as viewed across the span of time, cultures, and geography, tapping into history.

6. Where was your last gig?

We are a long-distance recording project, so unfortunately, we don’t perform as a band. We’ve all been performing artists for around 4 decades. So most of our performance history was in the tri-state area around Chicago, playing Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin. Since then, Joe Booe has performed for years in California with the progressive rock band 7 Months and in Florida, while Pete Bartolomei has performed in the Las Vegas area.

7. Where would you like to act?

Once the album is completed, we plan on playing in and around Vegas and branching out from there. This is the home base for all but Joe Booe, who lives in Florida. Should the opportunity arise to tour, we would certainly be interested. 

8. Who would you like to feature with?

There are quite a few artists we’d love to share the stage with. The acts that fit our sound would probably be Disturbed, Shinedown, and Avenged Sevenfold, but I think even acts like Any Given Sin, Blacktop Mojo, or Shaman’s Harvest would be killer!

9. Whom not?

We know what we are and what we aren’t. We don’t want to share the stage with watered-down 3 chord artists with no soul to their music. We have no interest in performing with formulaic almost rock artists. I never wanna bash anyone, or what they play, but I think almost everyone can tell who’s playing according to the popular label formula, the algorithms of popular chord progressions. No thanks. 

10. Have any of you ever suffered from stage fright?

Ha! If we did, it would have been 40 years ago. We’ve all been doing this for a long time. I think we might be more likely to suffer from it now since we are just a recording project! We haven’t performed together. In fact, we haven’t even been in the same room together as a band yet!

11. Any tips for beginners on how to beat that?

Getting on stage for a sound check is a sure-fire way to avoid stage right. It gives you a chance to feel the environment, while it’s still relatively empty and get comfortable. Imagine everyone there is a hot naked chick. It always works, too. 

12. What bands have inspired you the most?

We are very inspired by bands that want to tell a big story, the whole concept-album approach is very inspiring for us, so bands like Queensryche, Pink Floyd, Dream Theater, Yes, Rush, and The Who, have all really given us insight into writing in that regard. We also love the use of historical musical styles to inspire us, so Rainbow, Richie Blackmore, and Dio definitely have given us ideas for using those ancient melodies in our music, as well.

13. What is the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

At our CD release party for the band StrictNine, which Pete Bartolomei and I were in, I had a line of girls asking for my autograph on their tits and asses. I thought it was a joke, but all of them wanted it. I was more than happy to oblige, I just thought, are these chicks never gonna shower??

14. What do you think of your fans?

Like all bands, we think our fans are the best! They have to be, we don’t play out! They continue to support us even without the energy of a live show! I’m looking forward to giving that to them once the album is finished.

15. What do you think of our site?

Your site is just plain BADASS!!! I was floored by how many bands are cataloged there! It’s amazing how much information is available through your site on EVERY relevant band I know!

16. Something to add?

Reign of Fire may not be for everyone. We don’t do three-and-a-half-minute formula songs that are made for radio. We are probably just different enough to put some people off, but we also may be just different enough to be really interesting to someone who is sick of the formulaic music that the labels want to continue to force-feed radio listeners. Check us out, I think you might find yourself sucked into the journey. Thanks!

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