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Xystus - A little chat with Ivo
[b]Xystus are a melodic power metal band in the style of Kamelot, Stratovarius and Symphony X. On a sunny day Metal Rage reporter Mat-Core found out that it was time for an interview with Xystus. We spoke with Ivo, the drummer.[/b] [b]M: The first question is about the history of the band, how have you come together, when and what does Xystus mean?[/b] I: Weíve started in 1998 with myself on guitar and thus 2 guitarists. In that period we played mostly Metallica songs, like Fade To Black and One, but also King Nothing. It didnít worked out that well and then I decided that I wanted to play the drums because we couldnít find a drummer. Then we gave Tim a bass guitar in his hands and he had to begin playing bass. That was in 1999. About the name Xystus, that was found in a Latin dictionary and it means something like an entrance to an Arena. [b]M: Youíve recorded the album a little while ago, yet you want to bring it out when youíve found a label. Howís the search going?[/b] I: Well, Bas (guitarist/vocalist, Mat-Core) and I visited DVS records and that will be the label under which weíll sign. There some little problems but we are sure that we can work that out. [b]M: Iíll skip the questions about the lyrics, because Bas already answered those questions. My next question is about the future, are there already plans for a second album? Mostly because the song material for the upcoming album is already done for some time.[/b] I: Well, I amÖ. Uhmm, We arenít very busy with that yet because this album isnít out yet, and first we want to exploit this album. But Iíve already written some new songs. [b]M: Well, I asked about the song Resurrection Of Chaos to Bas, but he said that it was a song for the second album, howís that then?[/b] I: Well, there arenít any concrete plans of recording a second album, but yes, we are already in the writing process for the second album. That second album will be a more heavier album than our upcoming album. [b]M: What kind of style can we expect?[/b] I: In my humble opinion itís still the same style, but it will be somewhat more powerful. A little bit more of everything. Itís heavier, more progressive, and more technical. That would be a good way to describe it, yes. [b]M: What are you planning to reach with Xystus, if you look to other bands. Or donít you have a band that you would keep in eye?[/b] I: Well, you can take that on 2 sides, the personal level of technique and playing together as a band. Well, for the first side. As musicians we would like to hope to reach the same level of technique as Dream Theater. But I wouldnít like to play music like Dream Theater. My dream is to find a nice path between Nightwish, Kamelot and Symphony X. And then, well, such little things a band like Kamelot puts in itís music, that would something we would prefer. We certainly will keep playing a mix of Power metal, Symphonic and Progressive. [b]M: Recently I received a mail about that you were to do a tour in Egypt. How has that come to happen? Youíve only played in our borders for that I know?[/b] I: Yeah, thatís true, well we actually played some shows in Germany but for the rest it was mainly in Holland. [b]M: Yeah Germany has a big market for Power metal, but Egypt?[/b] I: Well, actually we have some acquaintances in Egypt and we gave them a disc with our music on it. He loved the music that much that he said that he wanted to arrange something for us. He arranged it with, well I donít know how the company was named, but you can compare it with MoJo in the Netherlands. They reacted positive and asked our acquaintance that if he could get us in Egypt, they would finance the trip and everything. [b]M: How many shows are you scheduled for, as it is a tour[/b] I: We have 3 shows confirmed and it was a rush job to get everything fixed. [b]M: So you donít know with which bands youíll perform?[/b] I: No, probably it will be more events and stuff like that. [b]M: Not a festival?[/b] I: Well, I donít know that yet. Itís a bit clouded but there is one thing certain. Weíre going to perform in an Arena, like the Colloseum. [b]M: You have recently taken recordings for a video clip. That was in the ďGroene EngelĒ. How has that finished?[/b] I: Well, soon we are showed the material that was taken there. Weíll then decide what we can do with the material. The plan is to use it for the future, possibly for a DVD. We arenít sure about that yet, first we need to discover if there is enough will to bring it out. [b]M: You mention a DVD, are you already that far with your mind that you already can think of that? Isnít that a little bit fast?[/b] I: True, but the plan we had in mind was that we wanted to have something special as an extra with the album. We are trying to arrange something on the short term for this. Perhaps a bonus DVD with the album, or something with a code. So it isnít to be something mayor, but just as an extra for the upcoming album. Itís a bad market right now, so it wouldnít be wrong to do something extra. [b]M: What can you tell me about the scene of Power Metal in Holland. How do you see that?[/b] I: Itís a very bad country for this kind of music. It isnít that the bands are playing bad, in the contrary. But because there are so many power metal bands in the world, you get easily compared as one of a million bands that all lay in the same style of music. For instance, Kamelot, Stratovarius and Rhapsody. [b]M: So, letís say you would be Germans, and bring out your material in Germany, would that change things?[/b] I: Well. I donít think we have to be Germans for that (Laughs). But suppose it would be, I think everything would go faster indeed. Well, let me point out that a part of the deal with DVS records is indeed Germany. You donít have to expect much from us in the Netherlands. [b]M: You are playing on the Prog Power festival in Baarlo this year. How have you managed that and what are your expectations about this?[/b] I: On a certain day we noticed through the website of Prog Power, that they looked for a Dutch act. They were literally overwhelmed with demo tapes. In the first place it wasnít the plan to participate this year because we didnít know when the album was going to be brought out. Rene, also the manager of DVS received our promo. Well, they were quite enthusiastic and wanted us to play on Prog Power. I canít say on which podium and at what time, as that is still secret ( Prog Power is being held on the 4th and 5th of October and Xystus will open the stage on the 5th for bands like Andromeda and Evergrey, Mat-Core) I also canít tell you the names of the bands that will perform there. ( at the time the interview was held, it still was secret, because it was somewhere in June/July) Iíve heard from many people that itís a killer festival to perform! [b]M: Iím kindda out of questions, are there any tours planned with DVS records? And what are your plans?[/b] I: Yes, there are plans for a tour with other DVS bands somewhere in the beginning of the next year. But there are some more plans indeed. After the touring with the other DVS bands, we would like to go to America that would be very cool! [b]M: Okay, thanks for the interview!![/b]