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Black Destiny - No ICED EARTH-copy (Michael) - February 2001

Among the best homegrown Metallic crops of Germany is BLACK DESTINY. Their formidable debut "Black Is Where Our Heart Belongs" is a true hammer of pure steel. They sound rather US-Metallic and thus differing positively from the whole Melo-Speed-flood. Furthermore vocalist Michael also is active in another band named XIRON.
Therefore I didn't limit myself to BLACK DESTINY, but also got a few statements for the other one, so here we go!


What, in your opinion, is the main difference between BLACK DESTINY and XIRON? Stilistically I can barely find one.

I'd say that XIRON more bears the label of "true Power Metal" - BLACK DESTINY more tries to cover the spans between styles. I think that on the next albums these difference will become more evident. If you still detect similarities, it might be, because 2/5 of the members of the band are identical.


The release of the XIRON-debut had been delayed many times. What had been the reason for that?

Well, it was a real disaster. The whole thing really has cost is a lot of time and nerves. Our choice of studio had been an error, looking at it now. The whole surroundings just had not been professional enough - therefore we were more than discontent with the sound. We then mastered the whole matter for a few times, to get the best out of it, but the result neither really satisfied us nor Iron Glory. Well, after a lot of discussions we decided to use the first mix after all to finally get somewhere. I think that we have earned a lot and know, how to do it better next time.


Isn't it difficult to be with the same label with both bands?

No, not really - at least not for Chris (drums) and myself, because we play in both bands. As we have had such big problems with the XIRON-production, we were glad that the release of BLACK DESTINY went along so smoothly and we therefore have such a good relationship with Iron Glory.
The only thing that's kind of disturbing is that some people think that BLACK DESTINY is only a side-project of XIRON-members, which definitely is wrong - both are independent bands and have no connection apart from the fact that two members are the same.


I've read that really embarrassing review in the "Rock Hard". You cannot argue about taste, but to accuse you of a weak production and of being an ICED EARTH-copy is impudent. What is your opinion on that?

You express my sentiments exactly - all members of BLACK DESTINY were very disappointed about this one. You really couldn't call that "constructive criticism"... But I guess that the writer had some fun in thrashing a band again. Well, what can we do? Reviews are subjective and it isn't as if everybody should like everything. It's quite interesting to see the difference between commercial magazines ("Rock Hard") and those zones, which are closer to the basis, when dealing with the first release of a band (on a rather small label). As for the production, we didn't have a budget of 20.000 Marks and we tried to make the best out of the money we had.
And that ICED EARTH-thing - it's almost amusing again, but shows that some "bored" recensents rather read the BLACK DESTINY-label-info than really listening closely to the album.


I think that "Black Is Where Our Heart Belongs" is a very good album, but the cover is, in my opinion, utter crap. It rather looks like a cliché-Gothic-thingy! Do you like it? Doesn't look very Metal to me...

First of all I'm happy that you like the album. With the cover I think that it fits both the band-name and the CD-title and the lyrics. I like dark covers - maybe because my musical taste has grown a bit more diverse, taking Gothic up to Metal. The "Heavy oder was!"-title for BLACK DESTINY "NeoNoir Power Metal" is really OK with us. (Fits quite well! - Ralf).


What do you think about the whole Melodic-Speed-wave? Bands like HAMMERFALL, RHAPSODY and EDGUY are really going strong. Is that still Metal for you?

It's always difficult to say what is pure "Metal". I'd say, if people, who listen to EDGUY and co. feel themselves as Metal-fans, then you cannot really say that this music is no "Metal". Nobody is in the position to draw a line there. Even though I haven't bought any CD of neither HAMMERFALL, RHAPSODY nor EDGUY, I still can listen to it without having to fear any lasting damage and I grant each of them their success, which they undoubtedly have. Tolerance and respect are the two keywords there.


How are things looking for new material? Are there already plans for the next longplayer?

Si si, right now I am listening to the first pilot-songs with guitar and drum-computer to find the right words for my lyrics. We want to do a real cracker with the next CD and we will do anything we can to achieve that - promised!


What can we expect from a BLACK DESTINY-live-gig and how often do you play live?

What you can expect?! I'd say: honest wildness (and no articifial showcase of vanity), paired with Heavy Metal. How often we play live? Not often enough - we still are searching for an offer for a support-slot.
In April (20. 21. without guarantee) we will play together with PARAGON in Hamburg and Osnabrück. Apart from that we try to do some smaller club-gigs here and there.


Which five Metal-albums would you take with you to the famous lonely island?

Oh, thats difficult to say....... "Piece Of Mind" (IRON MAIDEN), my only Melodic Speed -Album: "Kings Of The Nordic Twilight" (Luca Turilli), "Something Wicked..." (ICED EARTH), "The Ultimate Sin" (Ozzy Osbourne), and a little Black Metal: "Cruelty And The Beast" (CRADLE OF FILTH).

What will the nearer future hold for you?

Write good songs, do some gigs, haunt Frank Trojan in his dreams (just kidding), show the people that we are no ICED EARTH-cover-band and enjoy the wild life...


Which question about BLACK DESTINY/XIRON would you like to be asked, but never have heard?

The question, if I think that Metal was dead and my answer would be "No man, METAL NEVER DIES!!!"


2000: Black Is Where Our Heart Belongs (CD, Iron Glory)


Ralf Henn

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