Christos Antoniou – Chaostar

MAtW – Hello, Christos, it is great sharing a few words with you here on Metal Around The World! How are you?

Hello, I am fine thanks! Tired by rehearsing with Chaostar and Septicflesh and composing…

MAtW – Nothing about CHAOSTAR is haphazard, so I am sure that the name of the band has an interesting story behind it. Would you share that with us?

Sotiris (Septicflesh) has the idea of the name. It was in the summer of 1999 in Fredman Studio when we took the decision to form Chaostar. We were recording the “Revolution DNA” and this album was the only one that didn’t have any classical or orchestral elements. We said we don’t we form a band that it is the “orchestral side” of Septiclfesh. It has been started as a project but now is a full band ready for shows, tour etc. Anomims marks the new Era for Chaostar.

MAtW – How did recording “Anonima” go? Is it all ready and wrapped up?

I took me really long time to compose the material. We recorded in our professional studios in Devasoundz studios in Athens during the whole summer. Yes it is ready it will be released 10th of May worldwide and 28th in North America by Season of Mist.

MAtW – I asked because it’s been about six years since CHAOSTAR released an album and on top of that you also inked a deal with Season Of Mist.

Yes the last release was a compilation with some bonus songs but not a new album. Since then I was in talks with Michael the boss of Season Of Mist that I am looking for a label and told I will sign it definitely!

MAtW – You once said that this is almost a “revival”. How did this collaboration come about? Would you not have continued with CHAOSTAR had it not been for this oportunity?

Now is the proper time to do it. I have found excellent musicians ready to meet the demands for the new era of Chaostar. Is not a project anymore is a full band that will continue to release albums and perform everywhere!

MAtW – Could you impart any technical details on “Anonima”?

The recordings and mix took place in Devasoundz studios that belong to me and Fotis Benardo. We have recorder there “The Great Mass”, Rotting Christ also recorded their last album there. As you can understand we had the luxury to experiment in various issues regarding the recordings process and even the composition process of ANOMIMA. The mix was from Lambros Sfyris who was responsible for the debut cd from Chaostar and various Septicflesh albums in the old days such as The Ophidian Wheel, The Fallen Temple. The production was mainly from me and Fotis was in charge for the recordings.

MAtW – What inspired you to choose “Anonima”? What is the concept or main theme of the album? (If it can be described slightly)

“Anomima” is closely to the word “sin”, but has a wider meaning and refers to the “unapproved “action. The unapproved action can also be a revolutionary idea, a provocative behavior which opens doors to freedom or if you wish a fresh view over a “taboo” subject that shocks humanity. That is why Anomima is the best way to describe the concept of our album. To make myself clear, the main theme is the power of the “single unit” to change the world. We are truly thrilled by the courage that a man may present in order to find a way to speak his opinion or promote his ideas. I usually refer to Galileo Galilei , who faced the outrageous decision of death penalty because through his personal and tireless astronomic studies of the planets , said the truth, that earth moves around its own axis and around the sun. The undisputable facts of nowadays , had been once the “Anomima” of their days.

MAtW – You once mentioned that Euripides’ drama masterpiece ‘Medea’ would be something you would take up next.

I had in mind to create a work for Medea but I have decided to abandon it for now. I don’t know what I will do in the future; I have other musical plans at the moment. Time will tell.

MAtW – The disc will feature David Vincent and Fernando Ribeiro? How did the idea originate?

I am very good friend with both of them. We are really lucky that were positive in my suggestion to take part in Anomima. Especially the narration of David Vincent for Medea is amazing. I thank both of them for their contribution.

MAtW – Any other surprises that could be shared or is it all indeed… a surprise?

We have used different languages for “Anonima”. One of the biggest challenges of this album was definitely that. We have songs in Greek, Italian, German, French and even Japanese!

MAtW- CHAOSTAR is about to be performing abroad for the first time, Romania too at the Ghost Rasnov Festival in July. How does it feel to be hitting a fest? Any expectations?

We are really pleased and enthusiastic about our first concert abroad that will take place in Rasnov in Romania. It is always pleasure to perform there I have done it many times with Septicflesh. As I said we can play everywhere and the Ghost Festival would be a great opportunity for us to create a unique atmosphere. The promoters seems really professional and I am sure would be a great festival.

MAtW – Do you think there is a common area between Chaostar fans and Septicflesh? For some to like one band and then discover and grow onto the other?

Yes there is. Of course we gain fans from Septic Flesh fan base and I am really pleased about that. Although the one is pure metal and the other mainly ambient, ethnic the link is the “classical music” influences which is basic canvas for Septicflesh and Chaostar. Both bands walk a common artistic path. We don’t follow recipes or trends we follow our inspiration.

MAtW – How did the collaboration with Androniki Skoula come about?

From common friends. I was impressed when I first heard her. I said in my mind that I found the new Chaostar singer. She can sing many different styles and this is the most important for a composer. There are no limits when I compose for her.

MAtW – Can we expect “Anonima” as DVD too?

Yes it will be a DVD also in the digipack limited edition. The DVD called “Anonimata” and describes in details the whole action process in the studio.

MAtW – Who is writing the lyrics? And what themes should we expect now?

Androniki is the main responsible for the lyrics but George Diamantopoulos has also contributed in the writing for lyrics in one song. The themes as I mentioned previously refer to the ability one can have to stand on his feet and defend his beliefs. It doesn’t have to be a wide known person. It can be a simple person, a daily woman, hardworking man, but most of all it is always that feeling that lies beneath. The loneliness of defending what is yours. That feeling which is one of the darkest and most frightening moments we can face in life makes me shiver. In the album you will find Antigone mourning joyably her desicion to die following the commands of her heart, but you will also meet each of you those times that loneliness and courage are the only feelings left inside.

MAtW – An album can be very much like a canvas… What are some new / extreme influences you will incorporate in the new album? (You said something about “avant-gard rythms, electronic sounds, but also Byzantine psalmodies”).

I tried on this album to experiment on some new musical paths. Medea has been based on Byzantine psalms but is not evident at all except the end where an ex-priest sings. I think I made a good job blending together the German Language with the byzantine influenced hymns. It sounds awkward but the result really satisfies me.
We have also a dub-step element on another song. I really like dub-step and was challenging for me to create the proper “territory” to add the orchestra with this electronic element. Was really fun! Rhythm has always fascinated me and again Medea has some avant-garde music vocabulary both in harmony and rhythm.

MAtW – Last question: random question. Name your favourite Greek personality and favourite Roman personality!

From Greece I would say two Socrates and Alexander the Great and from Roman Period Horatius.

MAtW – Thank you for taking the time to talk to us, Christos! If there is anything you would like to add, please do so!

Thanks for the interview and see you on the road!

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