BOB KATSIONIS

BOB KATSIONIS has a new album out now. So an interview was in place. Anders Ekdahl ©2018

Let’s start with your latest recording. When you look back at it now what kind of feelings do you have for it?
-Bob: It all went so fast! The whole album was conceived/recorded in a period of 2 weeks (!!!) last August. It was the first free month I had for the last 10 years or so. All this touring with the bands never gave me enough space to create my own stuff. So,I was just staying home playing Playstation and writing music! Thats why the album came out so compact and different. I would gladly do it again!

What was it that made you want to go solo and what has it meant to you to front with your own name?
-Bob: One big mistake I noticed being a producer of other bands, is that a lot of times, there are some really good musicians with a strong opinion who desperately try to squeeze their ideas in the band they play/ Most of the times they are right but still, this makes them look like assholes in the writing and recording process of an album. Since in the beginning, I was mostly playing in bands that other people are leading, I found the solo albums the best way of getting out of their way and make my own art. This also made me look more professional since I was not busting anyone’s balls to keep my riff or listen to my opinion!

What does it mean to you that there are people out there that actually appreciate and look forward to what you are doing?
Bob: Well..this is everything! You know,all these years in the music business, trying to promote myself and my music through touring, advertising, or even looking other people who they do it and how much they scream to be heard,I recently realised that I shlould be grateful for each and every person in the other side of the planet who still supports my music, buys my album and gives me a positive feedback. We have to be grateful for what we have and not weeping for what we have not. If 500 people over the globe buy my album and some thousands stream my songs and get even the slightest emotion from my music…I’m happy.

How important is image to the band? What impression do you want the fans to get of the band?
Bob: I think its everything. Nowadays people dont have time for listening to a whole album,but still they GOT to have an opinion about it. So they look at the picture of the cover, or the band photo and get an idea if they’re gonna proceed and give a band some time or not. This is the reason that bands with a visual concept get SO successful. Look at Ghost, Baby Metal, Sabaton, Amon Amarth, Slipknot, Steel Panther.. you know how their music sounds without having to listen to a single note. And it works!

I am a huge fan of LP art work. How important is it to have the right art work for your album?
Bob: I couldn’t agree more. Especially for my own albums,since they are instrumentals, the image is everything. This is why I chose the same artist (Aurelien Police) to visualise both my latest two albums “Rest In Keys”and “Prognosis & Synopsis”. This guy KNOWS exactly how my music should look like. Maybe he knows it better than me! I just send him the music and tell him “listen and then draw something for it”. Both of the times he sent me ONE artwork,we made NO corrections,it was just this. I paid him and moved forward! I love this guy he is awesome.
Also,this is why I designed my own mobile App,the ICON-DISC where I can feature a different artwork per each song,to help people visualize my music. You have to check it out yourselves,just type “katsionis” in your App Store or “Google Play store” and you have it!

We live in a superficial world today where you don’t exist if you are not on Youtube and Facebook. Has social media been only beneficial in socializing with the fans or is there a downside to it too?
Bob: Well…I really hate all this stuff but anyone who has watched Black Mirror Tv-Series they know that it’s all a part of a process of being connected to each other with a more long-term plan. I hate Instagram and twitter and everything I am there because I have to. I really wish that one day they all go down,but this is not gonna happen,so we have to be the best we can. And ofcourse this means that a person has to “trim the edges” of his personality to fit in this world and play the game. No more wild rock star shit,no more Ozzy bitting the head off pigeons-nowadays they would have hung this guy in the central square.

When you play in a band does it feel like you are a part of a massive community? That you belong to something that gives meaning to your life?
Bob: I will simply say that it was what I was dreaming of when I first picked up my guitar when I was 16. And I’m really happy and grateful that I made it my “day job” even if it take place mostly at night hahaha!

When you are in the middle of it do you notice what state our beloved music scene is in? Is the scene healthy or does it suffer from some ailment?
Bob: It’s so strange. it feels that there is not metal music as a concept anymore. It’s just pop music with blood and fire. Plus there is no underground anymore. Everyone streams his music in iTunes, Youtube and everywhere were the pop and mainstream music is being sold,too. It’s only a number of who has the numbers of streams and sales. Back in the day, you could be a successful underground act. Now it’s just numbers.

How much of a touring band are you guys? How hard is it to get gigs outside of your borders?
Bob: I’m lucky enough of having seen the whole world by touring with FIrewind and also other bands I have played with. For the moment I’m a bit tired of touring but every time I say so, it doesnt take much until I get jealous of all these bands touring and I want to get back on the tour bus!

What will the future bring?
Bob:Lots of stuff: next solo album, new OUTLOUD album is being mastered as we speak, a lot of new releases via my own record label Symmetric records, new ICON-DISC App’s through App The Irons and lots of works in my studio and with my videocompany Progressive Vision Group. I keep myself busy while I try to squeeze in some Playstation time to help me clear my head and travel to another dimension! Thanx for the chat guys,see you soon!

You can find everything about my music here:
https://symmetricrecords.bandcamp.com/artists
and also would be cool to check out my revolutionary ICON-DISC App,which features my albums on your phone.
Go on,”Rest In Keys” album is FREE here:
ios: Katsionis Charalampos Apps on the App Store
Android: https://itunes.apple.com/gr/developer/katsionis-charalampos/id1318654044?mt=8

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