By Keith Clement
Greetings from Metalheads Forever Magazine, how are you today?
Hi MFM, I’m flying high. Firstly, I would like to thank you for the opportunity of being interviewed by one of the greatest music magazines in the world.
Tell us about the band, how it was formed?
Ironwill was formed to follow my solo project because I believe that music and metal after all is one of the best ways to send profound messages to listeners.
The lineup is one of the best musicians I ever had. On the CD I had Tony Franklin on bass: he is really the fretless monster and a wonderful soul. On vocals there are the most famous voices in Italy from the past to the present: Morgana, Piero Leporale, Andrea Rock (DJ of Virginradio) and Kifrah.
The live line up is formed by: Piero Leporale and Kifrah on vocals, Max Bindi on guitar, Calvin Duke on bass, Noraccio on drums and I of course
Last month you released your concept album “Jonathan Journey” tell us about the album, and the work behind it?
After several works in former metal bands I found my own freedom during the process of creating this album. In the beginning, I started to think about poetry but suddenly the rhymes turned on melodies and rhythm, so I changed my thought in music.
I tried a new position on my guitar thanks to the C drop that I never tasted before. The new sound leaded me to a new horizon. I discovered a very heavy sound, dark and profound: pure metal. However, since I needed to deliver a deep message using poetry, I worked to create very melodic vocals lines. I had appealed to different tunes on vocals; female and male singers paint the story directly from my imagination.
The same solution was used for all guitar solos: I tried to recreate something that could be more melodic than technical.
The album mainly focused on Bullying of a Kid Victim, why you chose bullying as the subject in this album?
First, as I said before, I believe that music is the best way to communicate and deliver inspiring messages. I believe that metalheads are very sensitive people and that beyond the strongest music in the word there is the need to face up inner problems and feelings.
Jonathan’s Journey is a concept album, its themes explore the evolution of the spirit of a lost soul, whose dilemmas are caused by a past life of bullying and agony. The path taken by the protagonist, narrated into 10 songs, leads to his spiritual realization and peace with his past demons. The story-line is based on two different characters, Johnathan and Ironwill, who both represent the same person, interchange their path, along with their feelings, for all the 10 songs. Johnathan is a 12 years old student, who’s bullied by his peers for his physical appearance and obese condition. His pain leads the boy to lose his soul in to a mirror, where he seeks the way to peace with his alter ego Ironwill, the representation of his redemption from marginalization and sufferance.
The album could be viewed as my story, as the everyone story: it’s about the adolescent distress but after all it’s about personal life progression.
What are the band’s thoughts towards bullying, how can we as a person in the society can stop this menace?
Bullying is an old sore; the new technologies sharpen this evil that has always existed. The problem is shown by its two faces: the victim and the bullies. Both are victims of their own inner discomfort and have taken a path that could lead to lose a part of their souls. As human being we need to act to rehabilitate mainly the victims, but we also need to provide help to the bullies’ situation, acknowledge where their problems came from and act to reduce them.
In my opinion culture and knowledge provide a big help to the evolution of souls and therefore we must teach to our children what bullying is and what are the consequences that those behaviors could lead to.
“Bees and Flies”, is addressed to every-man whose willpower, life and study knowledge and tenancy are the only instruments to achieve freedom. The song arrangement is a desired plagiarism and a strong reference to the famous song that conducted Albano and Michael Jackson to the (in)famous lawsuit. In this regard, the judges have ruled that the melody in question cannot be plagiarized as it is not protected by copyright.
What are the influences for starting IronWill?
Oh well, this is the biggest problem…. ahahah my influences start from blues to metal. I listen to all kind of music because music is life
What are the plans for the band in 2019?
We will be touring and play live, promote the album and its message in every form. I commissioned a comic book with the two characters Jonathan and Ironwill; the comic will be based on the same message of the album and I would like to spread it in schools.
How does IronWill look into the future?
We are looking into the future with our Ironwill. Keep rock and evolve.
Do you have a message for the fans and readers?
Think and be free!
MHF Magazine/Keith Clement