If I had seen the name RIZON in a record store I might have kept looking. But since I didn’t here’s what Matt (male lead vocals), Marco (keyboards) and Chris (guitars) responded to my questions. Anders Ekdahl ©2016
Could you please introduce the band to us?
[Chris] Rizon is a melodic rock band with some metal influences from the northern midlands of Switzerland. Beside the classic rock-band lineup with drums, bass and two guitars, we involve a keyboard player and two lead vocalists, male and female. The vocals are our unique trademark, especially because we don’t go with the “beauty and the beast” classical-vocals vs. growls concept. Since the beginning we’ve always had two distinguished rock voices.
When you form how easy is it to pick up a thread as to where your sound is going??
[Matt] We started the Band in 1997 without having a clear vision. Of course there were some ideas how we would like to sound, but we wanted to stay open minded.
[Marco] Our first song called “too early” was a kind of a pop rock song. Retrospectively looking at our first years, the title of this song is so true, cause it was definitely too early for us to go on stage! Since then we’ve developed our melodic rock/metal. But I think it rather “just happened” than we really had the intention play this style.
[Matt] During these years we tried to break out of our soundsceme many times and tried to write different styles of songs. But at the end of the day we always came back to our Rizon sound.
How do you explain the meaning of the band name?
-[Marco] Inspired by a Bruce Dickinson song I created it from the words “rise” and “on” and fortunately my band mates liked it. Meanwhile it has become to a kind of band-motto. We always try to improve our sound, our songs and our performances. So we always try to “rise on” a higher level.
How important is image to the band? What impression do you want the fans to get of the band?
[Matt] The image of the band is quite important to me. We love what we do. And this is, what we’d like to transport to our fans. We love to write new songs, we love to develop and record them and of course, we love to play live and have fun with the audience. We are just seven guys who love melodic rock and metal. However, we do not want to transport a particular political or ethical message, most likely to stay open minded and to treat each other respectfully.
[Marco] As Matt says we play music because it’s fun. We all have jobs and most of us have a family and young kids. Music is our way to get away from the daily stress. This is what we also want for our fans: We want to tear them away from everyday life! They shall enter the world of Rizon for a song or an album or a concert. And if they return from this world with a good mood and new energy, that would be perfect!
I am a huge fan of LP art work. How important is it to have the right art work for your album?
[Marco] For us it is, because we’re kind of old fashioned. Music needs a booklet and artwork. But maybe it lost a bit of relevance because you don’t go to the CD store anymore and listen to CDs with cool artwork.
[Matt] For me it is very important because it creates a kind of a final picture of the music. With the artwork of Power Plant we all are perfectly satisfied. Timo managed it to bring out the Power Plant pun as desired. Great work of art!
How do you avoid being affected by the hype likes on youtube and facebook can create on social media?
[Matt] There’s no way not to be affected of the whole www. At least, there is a huge potential for marketing and spreading our sound and videos around the world. The Internet offers us the chance to reach parts of the world we never could without. We’ve got Feedbacks from US over Europe to Japan. That’s great. So if you can’t avoid it, use it!
[Marco] Of course we also have problems with massive numbers of illegal downloads, but I also guess that most of the people who illegally download our music wouldn’t buy a CD anyway. We know that a lot of metal fans are traditional people who love to have a CD or vinyl with artwork and booklet and we know that our fans support us with legal buys 😉
When you play in a metal band does it feel like you are a part of massive community?
[Matt] Not really. I don’t know how this is in other countries around the world, but for us in Switzerland, it feels more like a very small, mostly local minded, community.
[Marco] Zürich, the closest bigger town to our homes is a hotspot of R’n’B and electro music. You probably know the Streetparade.
[Matt] With our 7-piece lineup we also cannot play in every club, cause some stages are just too small. Because the metal-community (except the core-stuff) is very small here, most of the medium-sized-clubs are too big for us. The feeling I guess you’re talking about is absolutely real if I visit a festival like the Wacken Open Air. Such events are great!
[Marco] Another aspect is, that with families, jobs and band we do not have a lot of time to visit gigs and parties of other bands. Personally, I would love to do, but I just don’t have enough time.
How important is it to be signed to label today? What can they do that you cannot so on your own?
[Chris] With all the possibilities of self-marketing on the internet it is certainly less important than 20 years ago. Pure-Steel Records yet are very helpful in several points: They support us strongly in promotion and get us in touch with people, such as with our great cover-artist Timo. From a financial point of view, I guess, neither the label nor we profit substantially. All the more, we are very happy to work together with Pure Steel for passion and for music, not for money.
[Matt] I absolutely agree with Chris. The big benefit of a label is the chance to share their network and experience.
How much of a touring band are you guys? How hard is it to get gigs outside of your borders?
[Chris] Because all of us have daytime jobs, touring longer than a few days is quite difficult.
[Marco] I’d love to do a support tour! But these slots usually are offered at very short notice. Thus we cannot organize this with our employers.
[Chris] Though, we love to play live, therefore, we concentrate our live-activities on short weekend-tours or single gigs in Switzerland or the nearby countries.
What will the future bring?
[Chris] We will see what happens with “Power Plant”.
[Marco] We love our new album! We have great songs and Jacob Hansen created an awesome mix! Now we’re excited about the reactions and feedback of you guys out there. Hope you love it as well 🙂
[Matt] I am sure you will! 😀