Hello and welcome to Sentinel Daily and thanks for kicking off our ‘My 2019’ Season! To begin, please introduce yourself and tell us your role within Amulet… “Hi, I’m Mace, singer of the band. Thanks for this opportunity”.
It’s good to have you along for the ride…Right – into the questions – what was the best new album you picked up as a music fan this year? “To be honest I hardly listen to new albums, except for a dozen bands that I really really love. And none of them have released albums in 2019…”
That’s fair enough. So what about old stuff or reissues – did you reignite your love for anyone in particular this year? “I’ll give you three great bands that I have discovered this year: Night Flight Orchestra, Triumvirat and The Walkabouts. And three Italian classics that made it back to my everyday playlists: Pooh, Ennio Morricone and Nomadi“.
A couple of new names for us to check out there – cheers! Personal highlights now – what was your own personal musical highpoint of the year? “The absolute top of 2019 was the release of The Inevitable War, Amulet’s second album and the first with myself behind the mike. I am really proud of it and playing these songs around Europe was a blast at every single show. Reading enthusiastic reviews from across the world was a great journey too, with the following quote from the British newspaper Weekend Sport that will remain in my heart forever: “Mace’s castrated shrills on Call of the Siren just might smash every vase in your house”. It was also quite emotional to meet several people at the German, Belgium and Netherlands gigs that still remember my former band Asgard and ask me to sign the booklets”.Playing our songs
We quite liked the album too – Our man Ferry Templeton pronounced the band as “fit to be mentioned in the same breath as the old Gods of British metal” after hearing it! Which other musician or band personally lit up the sky for you in 2019? And why? “I was beyond happy that my good friends and ex-label mates Ruler were finally able to release their third album, after many years of pause – so check their Descent into Hades! I was also impressed by the live performances of Vulture Vengeance and Skyrider (from theUK), two killer young bands. Memorable concerts I saw this year? Tangerine Dream, Arena and Nick Mason’s Saucerful of Secrets”.
The other side of the coin now – what disappointed you musically this year? “The whole Agent Steel pantomime. Agent Steel and John Cyriis have always been of my greatest inspirations (back in 2011, many reviewers called Asgard the “Italian Agent Steel”) and I was simply speechless when I found that Amulet were booked on the same bill as them for two festivals last summer. But you know what happened: the tour was cancelled after Keep It True and left hundreds of fans and also promoters angry. I’d also like to remember the early departure of the immense Andre Matos as one of the saddest moments of the 2019 (but he won’t be forgotten!)”.
Indeed he will not – forty seven is no age at all. And now looking forward – what does 2020 hold in store for you and the band? “I look forward to continuing forging new heavy metal with Amulet and to releasing a new album as soon as possible. Unfortunately, we need to find a new drummer first (Neil Ganesha has moved back to California) and this will slow things down a bit. With Asgard, things are more complicated. While we remain good friends, making music together is incredibly challenging, as I continue to live in London and the whole band is in Italy. But we are excited to play in London in January at the Live Evil festival”!
Great news! Now, we’re approaching the party season – what’s best for you Christmas Eve or New Year’s Eve? And what’s your poison? “I LOVE Christmas! I’m one of those weirdos that starts feeling it in November and has his own annual routine, including buying a new horrible Christmas jumper a year, and watching A Christmas Carol. Another key tradition that I have had since the age of seventeen, is the “Sleigh”, where me and my school mates dress up as Santa, elves and reindeer and go around town with a wooden sleigh with wheels, distributing candies to the children and wine to the adults. It makes people happy, makes ourselves drunk and keeps the Christmas spirit alive, a win-win-win situation. Unfortunately we stopped doing this a couple years ago because friends have jobs now and they can’t afford to be spotted drunk in the afternoon wearing leggings anymore” (laughs derisively).
The price of growing up is indeed a high one! But back to the festivities – You are given the task of curating the music at your fave party – what five tracks is no Christmas party complete without? “On top of the great immortal Christmas classics, I would add the following:
Journeyman – Iron Maiden, Lily Allen‘s Somewhere Only We Know, The Last Goodbye by Billy Boyd, Tearing at the Faerytale – Mostly Autumn and On the Turning Away by Pink Floyd“.
Well there’s a first – Lily Allen in Sentinel Daily! Well done! Now finally – is there anything else you’d like the readers of Sentinel Daily to be aware of? If you’ve got something to sell – sell it here! “We all look forward to be at the Live Evil festival, organised by our very own guitarist Marek Steven next 16-20 January in London. As I said, Asgard will be playing, joining high calibre acts like Pagan Altar, Eternal Champion, Saracen, Helvetet’s Port and Antichrist among others. And finally, I can’t wait to lay my filthy hands on the new Iron Maiden album that will very likely come next year”.
Live Evil sounds like a blast – good luck with that! Thanks for taking part! “Thank you and Happy Seasons to everyone!”