You might not have heard of Italian THE STRANDED yet but all that will change once you’ve read this interview with CLAUDIO RAVINALE. Anders Ekdahl ©2012
I never pass judgment on a band’s choice of name but what was it that made you want to name your band The Stranded?
CLAUDIO RAVINALE (Voice): ‘coz “Iron Maiden” was alredy taken, ahahah! You know, I cannot stand those 4/5-words names that a lot of shit-core bands use nowadays, they sound so retarded, “The Stranded” sounds cool, simple and catchy, so we picked it up.
I know close to nothing about you guys. Could you please give me a brief introduction to the inner dwellings of The Stranded?
-Anyway, it seems we’ve just released our brilliant debut album entitled “Survivalism Boulevard” and you should suggest all your readers to buy it ‘coz we need money to record the 2nd one! Besides, the record sounds damn good, mixing powerful modern metal with industrial keys and feral vocals, so it’s quite worth checkin’ out anyway, even if you don’t wanna buy it.
What is the hardest part being in a band? How much blood, sweat and tears have you given the band?
-It’s not hard at all if you like what you’re doing. The hard part is earning a living out of it, but if you really enjoy what you do being in a band (or, like I do, being in three different bands at the same time: Disarmonia Mundi, The Stranded and 5 Star Grave…) ain’t hard at all. It’s just something you do for yourself… Sure, having fans, reading good reviews, doing interviews and so on are cool things, but you cannot relate to it that much, ‘coz it may end in a moment, so it cannot be the main reason. You simply have to love what you do.
Is there a difference in the way people judge you before you have an album out and after the album’s been released? Are you taken more seriously when you have something to show for?
-Well, this is something like the 8th album I’m on, so I’m kinda used to it, but yeah, usually people find you more interesting or worth attention when they see you on magazines and so on… It’s quite stupid ‘coz you’re always the same person and you could be a complete idiot even if you’ve got your face on a magazine, but hey, that’s how life goes… As I said you cannot relate to this kinda stuff, so I couldn’t care less actually.
What is the metal scene like where you come from? Are there a lot of bands to interact with?
-I don’t know, never cared about the national metal scene in my whole life to be honest… I prefer to focus on what I do, there are good bands for sure, but I don’t have time to check them out and I’m not interested in doing so anyway. Never felt part of a scene in my whole life, too many people already need to show up constantly like they really mean something or are part of something meaningful, but it’s just bullshit by the way I see it.
Can we speak of a national scene that interacts to help further the cause of metal in you native home?
-Ahahah, c’mon we’re talking about Italy goddamit, this is a dead nation! People are losing their jobs, the economy is collapsing, everything is fucked up and is getting worse day by day, who gives a damn about music nowadays! Besides, this nation can be rightfully considered as the 3rd world of Europe, by the typical italian person heavy metal is still seen as noise and metal fans as hippies or drug-addicts, so of course nobody cares at all.
How much do you look to other countries in order to further your band’s career? Where do you see yourself having the best possible chance of making it?
-You cannot “make it” anymore. Sure, if you’re a puppet you can lick some influent ass on a daily basis and wait until they build a new shit-core emo band around you so you can pretend to be famous, but we ain’t talking about real music anymore, just business. You can still have a moderate success if you release a lot of records and tour a lot, but this is not what I mean for “making it”… Iron Maiden made it, Slayer made it, Judas Priest made it, and so on… This is what I mean for “making it”, and this ain’t possible anymore.
Is playing live still a viable way of getting your name known to the metal fans? What opportunities are there to play live for you guys?
-Yeah, if you’re a good live act you can still attract a lot of people, but your songs have to be good as well, otherwise you’ll be just a good live band playing crap music. Needless to say to organize good tours you need a lot of money and if you don’t sell a lot of records you cannot have that kinda money, so if people wanna see us tour they need to buy our new record otherwise we ain’t gonna tour at all.
What importance have the social media had on spreading the band’s name? How do you utilize the social media the best?
-They can be useful, well, they used to be useful back in the days, but I guess there are too many bands right now, so people may forget about you quite fast if they don’t see you live constantly.
What can we expect from The Stranded in the future?
-A 2nd album for sure, but right now we’re busy writing the new Disarmonia Mundi record, so you’ll probably have to wait a couple of years before that happens.