Absolace is a progressive metal band formed in 2007 which marks the coming together of individuals hailing from very diverse musical backgrounds, and is the brainchild of drummer Greg Cargopoulos. What makes this band’s lineup so unique is its diverse mix, bringing stars from various cultural backgrounds together. The band is comprised of: Nadim Jamal (Vocals) from Lebanon, Ben Harris (Bass) from Australia, Greg Cargopoulos from Greece (Drums), Jack Skinner (Guitars) from UK, and Kyle Roberts (Keys, Synths, Samples) from UK.
For the first time after 3 years of writing, they have finally joined together to release their first official debut album Resolve[d in July 2010. Resolve[d will mark a new approach to Progressive metal and offer a fresh new look at the tantalizing and promising future that awaits Absolace.
- Interview with Nadim Jamal (Vocals), via skype/phone (with a very bad connection)
- First of all, I’m glad to have you here on Lebmetal.com, we thank you for your time.
- I knew that you had three concerts in Dubai , how was it?
It was two concerts actually, and we have the third one this Friday. The first gig on Friday 23rd July, it was at Rock Nation in The Music Room, Majestic Hotel, Dubai, it was a great success, there was like 550 people, and usually there is like 200 people in the place, so lots of people came, people that we know and unknown came to hear the band, and it was the first performance for the band, I’m really happy of the result it was really good. And the second one on Friday 30th July, it was at Metal Asylum in Aussie Legends, Rydges Hotel, it was also another great success, both times we had a lot of people who supported us, from friends to people we don’t know.
This upcoming event on Friday it is a launch of the best songs from major bands in one cd and we are playing with 6 other bands, we are also booked in several concerts. Next month, all the way to December we have like 5 concerts plans.
- How do you describe the name of your band Absolace?
Ijunt’s Greg, the drummer, founder of the band, it was his childhood project, and coming with the name it’s a combination of 2 words Absolute and So Lace, it is actually 2 types of music, Absolute goes for aggressive and rhythmic style, and So Lace more like side of melodic, harmonic heart, acoustic for clean things. It is very much of Opeth style clean/ death, sometimes it’s aggressive and sometimes its relaxing and clean.
- How did you guys know each other?
Greg known Jack (guitars) since school, he is actually younger than him, and I’m not sure but I think they used to jam together. I met Greg on an event I was working on it, cause I’m an event organizer that’s what I do for living, and Greg was and still a sound engineering, so we met and we talked about music and we had a lot of common styles. And I told him I’m a vocalist, I used to sing in a progressive metal band in Lebanon called Overbleast(I think its the name), few months later he called me and he wanted to start a project of a band, then the bassist Ben, he is a professional musician, and cooperate also events in Dubai, we sometimes used to work together. And then Greg got in touch with Kyle Roberts, a childhood friend and talented practitioner of music production, sound design, and plug-in development.
- What are your influences?
Absolace main influences are a lot, such as Opeth, Tool, Porcupine tree, I listen to a lot of Alice in Chains, Metallica, Dream Theatre, Symphony X, Massive Attack, Jack same taste but sometimes Blues, and Jazz, Greg is a bit heavier taste but mostly the same, Ben listen to anything that has a good taste of music, with the band there’s a lot of influences in the show but the next album we are going to avoid of having any sort of influence effect, but you know while writing the influences kinda crops without noticing, but we are going to avoid that and just have the band own and unique music.
- What are your definitions about your newly released album in general?
Umm..Well Resolve [d is our first album, it is our first step it’s not really us as much as it’s Greg, but the next step it will be a group effort putting our own thoughts as a band. The theme is more like changes and adapting to a new life, and more like personal experience, there is the conflict between me moving from Lebanon and being attached to it, like in the song Spero Melior, there is a line “This very desert sand, I can’t call my own” I was referring here to the street of Hamra. It is more me going to transition phase, it is easier for me to write what is going in my head, what I experienced, it is not all negative thoughts but it has a positive twist side, it’s like this is what I am.
“This will be the first time Absolace comes together as a band to perform, and we are really looking forward to it, we have worked very hard for this and just hope people enjoy the final product.”Nadim Jamal (Vocals)
- Can you further describe the album’s cover?
Well the S refers more to a smooth taste, it woks really well as a sound dividing letter, because the name of the band is 2 part, so it is like the “S” is dividing the letter, it is like a shape in the name in some way, a smooth shake.
- I heard your album, it’s really great btw, was it an “easy” album for you? Did you have any problems while you were at it?
Ah, thank you. Well we had a bit of difficulties, it took us 3 years to reach this part, and Greg want to do this, and his first album, and recruiting the band, all part of his role, it takes time you know. And we had a lot of problems when we send it to Mix and Masters, we recorded the drums in Dubai, and the guitar, bass and vocals in a studio home we send it to Jens Bogren, an established producer in the Scandinavian metal scene, started the post-production of the album at Fascination Street Studios in Orebro, Sweden, who worked for Opeth. You have to spend a lot of money, to have a good result, and you find out which band you like its sound a lot for us it was Opeth, we had several problems with the sending because of the hard drive, but now it’s out and it’s done, and it’s finished, and it will be in Lebanon soon at all Virgin Megastores, we just need to finish some papers, and it’s on cdbaby.com which will be send to amazon, itunes.
- What is your favorite track on your new album Resolve[d]? And why?
Well I can tell you it’s between Resolve and Sepero Melior, they are very personal to me. They are like the first songs I wrote so it’s like “Fashit khele2” in the writing of it.
- In the song White lies, I sense there is abit of oriental sensation in the beginning, is it right? And do you like to use some of your country’s culture in your music?
Well it is already done and overdone, so we are not thinking of doing it now, some bands are really good in it, and doing it so well, but we want it to come naturally, to come in the right way, we don’t want it to be typical and overdone, when it sounds right and new we do it. And I love Lebanon and it is in my blood the culture, but it has to come out in the right time.“Through being involved in several bands of various genres over the years, my style has developed and I’ve incorporated other sounds and musical approaches which have all made their way into Resolve[d].” says Nadim Jamal
- Are there any plans of a new album soon? Perhaps you’d want to leave it as a surprise?
Definitely, there is a new project soon, we are going to start with it in 2 weeks or so, and hopefully it will be done in like 8 to 11 months, I already have lots of written lyrics done, and each one of the band that has an idea his writing it so we can combine them later on, so we are doing ASAP a new album, and creating music not so cheesy, new and our own music. And we are going to try to record it abroad. And there is not much to talk about it, we are not going to change out style, or record a label that order us to do this and that, to be commercial, but it is a more mature virgin of the band, you know in 3 years lots of things changes, and I’m really excited about it, a lot of promising things are coming. And we are going to do in the next album, is, you know how Porcupine Tree, has this ability to do long songs look like short ones and vis versa, so this what we are aiming to do, it is going to be really interesting. It’s like the music give you what you really want to hear and for how long.
- Do you guys have any thoughts about making video clips for your songs?
Yes, but not us playing on the roof or something like that, we want it more crazy, not to have like a message to be sent to people, or anything like that. It’s going to be more cool and very visual and crazy, more like visual driven, or a true story, that could go around youtube, you know the more we sell, the more we produce, cause to do it in the right way you need a lot of money, but I don’t really think we could really profit from the band project.
- I know that Kyle is from UK, are you thinking to have a gig there?
Yeh definitely, one step of a time. Jack and Kyle are from Uk and Greg is half british, it is simple for us, but step by step. And we are thinking of playing in the international festival and not just go anywhere and play. And being here in dubai it is easy for that, there is a lot of bands from dubai who are now playing in international concerts, in Lebanon it is abit weak there, there is less movements then outside, but there is a lot of good musicians in Lebanon but they don’t make much effort, and I’m not talking on the ones who achieved something, I support them though, I support every Lebanese band hat launch a cd and when I go to virgin in Lebanon I get all the Lebanese bands cds, even though I don’t listen to them but I do support them because the more they buy the more they produce.
- Are you thinking of having a concert in Lebanon?
Again – AKEEEEEED! Something’s coming up very soon but we’re not going to talk about it until it’s confirmed! Our album is going to be out in Virgin Lebanon soon – it’s my home – I love it – there is nowhere in the world I would want to play more. There will be MANY gigs in Lebanon (and one soon…)
- Well do you have anything personal you want to add?
Well I thank you for having me here, it was great pleasure meeting you, and hopefully see you in Lebanon soon and I just would like to say that the audience should support the band and the band should support the other band, and the organizers support the band, it is all the same team in this global scene. They are team, they should all support each other, so they can keep on going forward. I told you I buy, everytime I go to Lebanon, cds for Lebanese bands to support them, and to keep on going forward, when all this team combine together, it will become successfly for the bands and for the music.It was great meeting you Nadim, I wish you guys the best of luck and we are always here to support your music and spread the word to the people.Resolve [dwill be out soon in VIRGIN MEGASTORE IN LEBANON, support the band and I hope you will like their album, and a new album coming soon.Album available for sale online at www.cdbaby.com.
Buy CD from http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/Absolace and SOON in Virgin Megastores across Lebanon!