On June 6, Aniruddh Bansal of Metal Assault conducted an interview with vocalist Maurizio Iacono of Canadian extreme metallers KATAKLYSM. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Metal Assault: Your new DVD, “The Iron Will: 20 Years Determined”, is coming out on June 19th. What can fans expect from it? It seems to be quite a complete package and everything about the band’s 20-year history is in there.
Maurizio: Well, it’s something that we’ve been planning for a long time. We knew that the 20th anniversary was coming and we wanted to do something very special. The whole idea started with me wanting to write a book about the music industry and my own personal experiences, and what I’ve been through with KATAKLYSM. But then, as it turned out, withe everything that I’ve got going on, I just couldn’t put the book together on time and so we decided to hire a director and the record label decided to do this type of in-depth-style documentary about our entire career. I think it kind of represents a lot of the working-class type of metal bands out there, that are either struggling or making it, just both ends of it. So, it’s very very detailed. People that have seen it have said that it’s the most complete documentary they’ve ever seen, so that’s very good to hear. It’s five and a half hours and comes with our complete 20th-anniversary show in Germany, which we did last summer. We headlined that show in front of almost 20,000 people. It also has the “best-of” record and the CD version of the concert, too. So it’s a very complete package for sure. It’s very worth the money.
Metal Assault: So, while putting together this documentary, did you guys look at any other band documentaries to kind of study how to do this thing, or was it just like completely natural and you just put in whatever you filmed?
Maurizio: Well, two things. First of all, we didn’t want this to be like a sob story. It wasn’t meant to show the band in a way like, “Oh, look at us. We’re fucked up and we struggled and it was hard.” It wasn’t like that. We didn’t want to do that. It’s a good story, it’s the story of a band that’s been on its way to get recognition at some point. We’ve taken a huge risk because it’s so long, and in the beginning we were a little bit worried because we had decided to do something nobody had done before, and it’s a very, very detailed documentary. The only band that did anything close to it was CANNIBAL CORPSE, but theirs was four hours and ours is five and a half. There is also a lot of footage that’s not even in there, that we just couldn’t put because it was already too long. And also, we tried to do it in a different way as well. If you watch it, you’ll see that it’s not just somebody talking. There’s a lot of footage and there’s a lot of stuff where it’s comical. It’s a very emotional roller coaster, the whole thing. The director, Tommy Jones, has done an excellent job with this thing. It was a massive job to put together and we’re very happy with the fantastic job he’s done. So far the reviews are killer, and we couldn’t ask for anything more.
Metal Assault: You said that the way things are done in the States is not healthy for bands. What are some of those things?
Maurizio: There’s a lack of interest for small bands. America is based on the really big and the really small, and there’s not enough of the in between. There’s problems with the way the costs of developing bands is going, because there’s so little money for them to tour that bands are just breaking up before having a chance of going towards pursuing metal as a living. In Europe, they have tour buses that can accommodate up to four bands, and when we put four bands on a tour, we save on the cost of gas and hotels, and it gives bands the chance of spreading their fan base. That’s how KATAKLYSM did it, and I know that if I had to pay all of my way through when I was a teenager, there was no way I would have survived. Even at the beginning, when we were kids, we were used to be being put on a bus, and we were like, hell yeah, we don’t have to pay anything and we just go and play. That’s how we built our fan base and this is one thing America has to learn. It all has to come together and things need to be done in a different way than before, because I’m very worried about how the industry is going. There’s been no new bands that are breaking out there and making a big noise. Like I’ve said this before, PANTERA, to me, was the last rock-star band. There hasn’t really been anything since then that has made a huge impact or changed the industry, unless you want to say SLIPKNOT. But other than that, there hasn’t been anybody. We’re still worshiping all the really old-school bands and there’s nothing new that’s making an impact — in my opinion, at least.
Read the entire interview from Metal Assault.
“Iron Will” lyric video:
“Iron Will” official video: