:: Interview with Nightmare
Interview with Nightmare
Yves Campion, the bass player from one of my favourite power metal bands Nightmare
, took time to talk to me about the long 30 years these metal pioneers have been going and talks to me about the process of their new live album 'One Night of Live Insurrection'. Which is killer!
Metalship : Can you tell us a bit about yourself firstly guys; like what hobbies you have as well as playing your music?
“Well, personally Matt, I don't have much time for hobbies myself, but basically, all the band members have families these days, so we’re all really busy with those; you know the kind of stuff people like to do with their families?? Ha! Ha!”
Metalship : Tell us what you do in the band and who the other guys are?
“OK… I'm Yves. I’m playing bass; Jo Amore is our vocalist; JC Jess and Franc (Milleliri) play guitars and, David Amore is the drummer!”
Metalship : As a child, what music did you grow up listening to?
“I was very much into punk rock: bands such as UK Subs, the Damned, Sex Pistols
; and from there, I moved on to hard rock with bands such as Iron Maiden
, Judas Priest
; the normal stuff really!!”
Metalship : What was your first experience of Metal?
“I’d have to say, my very first experience was probably with Iron Maiden
, and with the “Killers
” album… With Paul Dianno in the band, the band had quite a punk rock feeling to them but there was another ingredient as well? I think that’s pretty much how I turned from punk to heavy metal!”
Metalship : How did you and the other guys in Nightmare meet up? Did you have similar interests right from the very beginning?
“Well, it’s a long time ago, of course – we’ve been doing this as Nightmare
since 1979 don’t forget, and the only band member still there today, from the early years is Jo, the singer, who was originally a drummer – so I’d better just concentrate on the last line up. Everyone has a similar background, that’s why the band has continued for so long… but it’s been a combination of different characters that have kept the band alive and musical tastes, of course.”
“When Jo arrived, he was a drummer with a band called Starblick; we were searching for a heavy metal drummer who could play double bass drum? We asked, and he agreed, simple as that! As for the current line up, basically all the new members replaced original members, so they were all busy with local bands here around Grenoble! All one happy family!”
Metalship : Nightmare has quite a few doom/blackened elements thrown in among the power metal. Is there any doom/black metal bands that inspire you particularly?
“I don't really agree with the ‘doom’ tag too much and I wouldn’t say we’re inspired by any of that! But I will agree that a bit of black metal occasionally might get in, in some parts, particularly on the albums since “Silent Room” (2003)? I actually did some of those BM. vocals, especially on 2007’s “Genetic Disorder” record, (on the song “Conspiracy”), and I will admit, I was very much inspired by Shagrath from Dimmu Borgir
, at that point!”
Metalship : What would you say are the main lyrical themes present in your music?
“Well, all the themes are different from one album to another really, but generally, we’re more interested in the strong topics; you know, real-life ideas and powerful lyrics about unsolved mysteries of the earth, like on the song “Cosmovion”, which is about the Nazca Lines in Peru, or “Eternal Winter”, on the new album, which is about the earth turning to ice ‘cause the planet is going crazy? We’ve touched on other topics like madness, the mafia in Sicily (“Secret Rules” on “The Dominion Gate” album or “Coos Rostra” on “Insurrection”)…., so there’s many interesting subjects out there!”
Metalship : Yes, “Insurrection” was your last studio album, came out in 2009, but the question on everybody’s mind is when can we expect a new Nightmare album?
“I don’t want to give too much away, but this is planned for early 2012, hopefully by February / March?”
Metalship : You have some pretty cool album covers as well. Who comes up with the ideas and designs the covers?
, we’ve worked with some great people over the years, but since “Genetic Disorder” (2007) we’ve stuck with a Swedish artist named Par Oloffson! We were really impressed with his job on that album, so we’ve decided to continue working with him
ever since! He just seems really clued in to our way of thinking!”
Metalship : Why did you decide to switch to AFM records back in 2009?
“Realistically, because they were more interested in the band than the others and we thought it was a label which could fit to our music more and also open up the German market for us! Regain had done a great job for us, but we were a bit of a strange band on their roster, which tends to be more focused on extreme metal?”
Metalship : Your latest album, the live album, came out in March 2011. Where and when did you record this and why choose the places you played?
“Well, basically, we recorded this DVD in our hometown of Grenoble on October 30th 2009, and this co-incided with the 30th Anniversary of the band! We thought it was the easiest way to celebrate the band’s great achievement! Record this in our hometown for logistical reasons – there was a huge demand for it actually – and, really go to town on the celebration and the night as a whole! It worked out beautifully!”
Metalship : Looking at the set list from the live album. You play a lot of songs off the new “Insurrection” album. What do you like most about playing these songs live?
we do, but it was intentional to do this! We were celebrating the band’s career, but we also wanted to show the modern face of Nightmare
and really promote what the band really is about today, with the current line up! It would have made no sense to play all songs from the eighties, with the two young guitarists that we have now, and not play anything these guys have helped to forge!”
Metalship : As you mentioned at the beginning, you have been together 30 years now. Did you ever think Nightmare would last this long?
“Realistically, to tell you the truth Matt, no, probably not..? But I don’t think we’ve ever really sat down and thought about it either! After the reunion, back in 1999, and after the wonderful offers from labels which resulted in the release of “Cosmovision” (through Napalm Records in 2001); and going back out on tour with Saxon
to promote this album, I really do think we’re seeing something of a new career starting again? It’s wonderful, and every day I think we all just thank our lucky stars!”
Metalship : Can the UK be expecting a Nightmare UK tour any time so, and if so when?
“Never say never! We’ve promised to try for this and we’re always looking forward but it all depends on promoters! We actually played at The Garage, in London, in 2006, and we had a great response from the audience, so, of course, this is a country we are focusing on! Let’s see what happens!”
Metalship : You have just toured with Sabaton. How much has this tour increased your fanbase?
“That’s right… And it’s certainly helped, especially in Germany! I think all these kinds of packages are effective for any band! You really have to grasp the chance and take it!”
Metalship : If you could play on a bill with 5 other bands alive or dead, who would be on the bill?
“My God!! My top 5 would be: Crimson Glory
, Iron Maiden
, Biomechanical, Oblivion and Death!”
Metalship : Ok guys, thanks for your time. Can you give our readers a brief summary of your new live album entitled ‘One Night of Insurrection’?
“Thanks to you too Matt!! To sum it up, I’d just say, nothing more than, “It’s Right In Your Face!” There you go.”
added by The Dark Lord, on April 26, 2011 for Metalship