Greetings my metal brother, how are you
today? Tann please describe what an average day in your life consists of for
you? If you could live in another period of earth history which would it be
Everyday I get up early in the morning and
immediately I put some metal on my stereo! Then I go to work. I am an
officer employee in a Maritime yachting/sailing club. All of spare time
afterwards is spent answering mail, doing interviews, playing the guitar,
rehearsing, reading books, listening to music, going out with my fiancee etc
etc. Only on weekends I go out to rock or metal pubs and drink until I
burst! I really would have liked to live during the Iron Age period with my
what is now known as
I have a great fascination for that period in time and archaeology in
general as well. I also spend a lot of time visiting ancient Roman ruins,
megalithic monuments etc studying these subjects and other past lost
cultures and people like the Egyptians, Aztecs, Celts, Vikings as
Tell us what inspired you to start Ironsword and are you
happy with your progress so far? Please describe in depth your first two
releases (Promo tapes ’95 & ’98)? Which release do you like better? Why so
long a time between releases? Anything you would like to change about those
I started IRONSWORD because I wanted to play traditional raw
Heavy Power Metal and be under control of everything. I was highly inspired
to be a kind of Manowar clone, but soon I realize that I need to put my own
personal touch and express through my music some of my ideas and ideals.
When I started IRONSWORD, Power Metal was not too popular like it is
nowadays, and I really remember the media saying that IRONSWORD was
outdated, non-original etc etc, and years later I see the same people
praising new Power Metal bands (I see this too, fucking trendies!! – Dale),
which is ironic. I kept faithful, always with an underground spirit and
attitude, still fighting and surviving, never sell out, so all this makes me
very happy of course. Nevertheless, since I’m the one, alone who takes care
of everything the progress has been very slowly. About the promos, to tell
you the truth I like both a lot, I really don’t have any fave one. Promo
1995 was important for me because it was a turning point in my musical
career, I had no studio budget and I just wanted to play metal from the
heart. Promo 1998 was to prove somehow that IRONSWORD was not dead, it put
me again on the right track, I was totally disappointed with the musical
business in and general and still I wanted to play metal! Changes!? I think
not (GOOD!! –Dale), I like the way the songs are, but if I ever change
anything it will be small parts, probably you will not notice, it will not
be radical changes. There is so long a time between releases, because after
releasing the promo 95, a few months later
I was already working on some new songs which I intended to be released as a
demo tape by the name of “Power Metal Thunder”. Meanwhile, I got a great
contract deal from the underground German label N.E.P. to release my first
cd, still entitled “Power Metal Thunder”, consisting of the old promo 95
songs and the new ones supposed for the demo, but it was not enough. So, for
almost a year, I kept composing new songs just to fill in, When I was about
to enter the studio and record the album, the label cancelled their
activities because it (the label) went bankrupt. With all this time lost, I
decided then to compose 5 new songs for a new promo, that was recorded and
released early 98.
I understand you are very inspired by Portuguese history.
Could you give me and my readers some highlights of your countries history
and in particular the parts that interest you? Are there many ruins and old
castles or other historic landmarks in
Yes, Portugal is very rich
in monuments, may it be old castles, Roman ruins, pre-historic sites etc.
For example in the village where I live, there is a place from the XVII
Century of a noble rich marquis. Portuguese history does interest me a lot,
especially from the Iron Age period, my forefathers of pre-Celtic origin. I
think the highlights of my country’s history must be the time of the
discoveries, our powerful navy fleet, the maritime rotes, the navigating
instruments and all the sea knowledge they left as heritage. I’m just not
too fond of the religious (christianity) influence upon our past history.
Describe life in
Portugal? What are America
and Canada viewed like by the Portuguese people and press? Tell us a few
things about the underground scene and bands in
Well, Portuguese metal is not too popular and there aren’t
too many known bands as well. However, I can recommend Tarantula, Rebellion,
Drakkar, Demon Dagger. I apologize for not giving too many details about it
but I’m quite isolated from the scene, you know. There’s simply too many
shitty bands and assholes who behave like rockstars, no-cooperation at all.
So, they don’t get my support! I guess life in
Portugal is ok, I do like
living here. It’s a beautiful peaceful country. Maybe for an outsider the
idea of beautiful landscapes, beaches, nice food and wines will be
attractive, but Portugal is much more than that. Well, Canada is viewed like
a familiar neighbor country, because a high percentage of Portuguese people
are living there (immigrants). I also think of bands like Exciter, Anvil,
Piledriver etc. About America, I really cannot give a general view from the
Portuguese people and press, I think the biggest concern is the conflict
between races and cultures, the unbridled society of consumption, and the
“never to be second best” philosophy (very true there – Dale).
Ironsword is a one man band. Do you prefer it this way? List
the good and bad points of a one man band? Have you ever thought of kicking
out one of your body parts due to musical differences? Which instrument do
you prefer and which instrument to you feel you are most talented with?
IRONSWORD is not a one man band anymore. I am already working
with a drummer, and if
we find worthy members for the band we’ll have a stable line-up, time does
not matter. It’s important all members have the same musical tastes, agree
100% with the musical direction of the band, and fit the image, attitude,
lyrics etc. I’m the boss and everything must be under my control. I really
don’t like mixing my ideas with others. Or the musicians follow me and obey
or they can freely leave. They have to respect that! Too many people judging
and deciding what to do does not take us anywhere. The bad points of a one
man band is for example when you take care of the band only on your spare
little time, answering mail, doing interviews etc etc. Sometimes I’m really
too overloaded, but all the fan support so far has been very encouraging for
me. I really don’t like any fave or feel talented for any instrument. I
enjoy playing guitar and bass guitar most. I think I prefer show my talent
when I composing and final song as a whole.
Do you have any plans to add members to Ironsword? Possibly
just session members for live shows? Do you even care to do live gigs?
Please describe an average day start to finish for you when in the recording
studio with your promo tapes?
Session members for live shows and studio recordings does not
work for IRONSWORD. I have tried that before and it failed. It’s important
to have a stable healthy line-up and sooner or later this might happen,
maybe we haven’t found yet the right people for IRONSWORD, but we are
patient. When I say I’m the boss, that the members must obey me or leave,
I’m not being arrogant. All my bad past experiences made me behave like
this. I really hate being dependent of anyone, and we cannot afford to
search and wait for other people to fit in. The band must continue, this
cannot slow us down. In the past I always felt I had the strength to carry
on alone, but it was hard. Now I want to change that, patiently. It’s part
of my plans to have a full line-up, to play live with decent conditions.
Working in the studio sometimes it’s a bitch, when machines don’t work and
the equipment suck. I record almost everything on the first take. I really
don’t like to improve or experiment things when I’m in the studio, I prefer
metal energy and feeling and play it loud! (Hails to that!! – Dale)
Do you think the world will end as many predict at the start
of the new millenium? What are your opinions on computers and the internet?
Do you have any plans to promote Ironsword on the internet? Do you spread
many flyers throughout the underground for your band?
Hopefully not! I still want to release some IRONSWORD albums
first! Well, when you are used to since several years to spread flyers
throughout the underground, hand-written letters, tape trading, xeroxed
fanzines, all the wasted time and money with mail, rip-offs etc obviously,
computers and the internet made things easier and helpful in all aspects,
however I feel now that the underground spirit is lost (Yes it seems this is
the price we pay – Dale). I don’t have at home a computer nor internet
either, but I know that some zines and fans already featured IRONSWORD on
their official web pages. All promotion for IRONSWORD is done in the old
Please tell us you as a person? Your hobbies/non-musical
interests? Tell us your history as a musician? I know you were in Moonspell
(I only like the Moonspell “Anno Satannae” demo tape and MCD “Under The
Moonspell”), did you leave Moonspell due to their new wimpy musical
I don’t like talking about myself, hope you respect that. I
can say that I’m a crazy metal guy with a high fascination for archaeology
and ancient civilizations. My musical career started in 88 more or less I
can’t recall, and played in several metal bands. Yes, I have played guitar
in Moonspell for two years, recorded with them the mini-cd “Under The
Moonspell” and the first album “Wolfheart”! I was kicked out of the band on
very bad terms due to several matters, and the musical direction was one of
the reasons. I guess back then we all were immature, and the shock of
different personalities was not favourable. I just regret there was no
honesty and respect to solve that problem upon their side.
Has there been much label interest for Ironsword? I heard you
are releasing soon a split 7”ep with Metalucifer, tell us all about that?
When will we see your debut full-length album?
I guess it’s the opposite. So far, I haven’t demonstrated too
much interest for it, because all of my efforts have been in promoting the
band across the nations instead of finding a label and getting signed.
Besides, in my plans I still want to release first a demo tape and a couple
of 7” inches, but if occasionally I find a honest worthy label where I can
trust my work and if they support me 100% things might change, it’s just a
matter of time I guess, or else IRONSWORD will be an eternal demo tape band!
Unfortunately, about the split single with METALUCIFER I cannot give further
details, I have sent all my material more than a year ago, I don’t the
reasons for all this delay and it seems I recently lost contact with the
label. Anyway, as soon as I release the new demo tape I will definitely
concentrate more in spreading my music throughout the labels, underground,
inspired you to play power/heavy metal in the ‘80’s tradition with Ironsword?
Please list some of your favorite bands of all-time? Also tell some fanzines
you have been enjoying lately? Are interested in horror/gore movies?
This is all natural for me, I grew up listening to 80s metal,
it has been a lifestyle for me, and it’s normal that I play from the heart
this traditional heavy power metal. I honestly don’t find any attraction for
the 90s stuff. I was inspired by Manowar to start the band and Ozzy, Dio,
Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and Saxon are some of my all time faves. I’ve been
enjoying lately “Metal On Metal” (Hail the Canadian scene! – Dale), a
Brazilian fanzine, very cool. About horror/gore movies, I like some of that
stuff, it’s quite fun! I prefer movies like “Excaliber”, “Braveheart”, and
“Conan”. Not forgetting the movies of “Beavis And Butthead” and “Bad News”!
What are the new Ironsword songs sounding like? Next time you
record will you use the same studio as the promo tapes? Describe your music
for someone who has never heard of your band?
Yes, I will use the same studio I recorded the promo tape 98,
since the promo 95 is a home recording on a 4 track. Anyway, I will use some
different equipment in the studio. The new songs are sounding very raw,
powerful and epic. More or less in the vein (of past songs like) “Call Of
Doom” and “Guardians…”. For those that have never heard my band the best
description is that I play power metal in the good old 80s way! Death to
How do you go about the song writing process? Do you start
with guitars or drum beat first? How often to you practice each instrument?
When your rehearsing do you just have a tape with the drums on it and play
your guitar and sing to it or what? When you write a riff and play it can
you imagine the rest of the song playing in your head?
I rehearse and compose during my spare time, maybe 2-3 hours
per day. At the moment, the song writing process is done by myself on
guitars (the drum beat etc is already done in my head) and then on the
rehearsal room I show the riffs or the whole song to the drummer, and we
start working. It can take 5 minutes or 5 weeks for example to finish the
song in it’s final form. Sometimes, during jam sessions we also come out
with some good stuff and we never try to improve. The feeling and energy of
metal is what counts! It’s easy for me to compose songs because I know what
I want for the band!
Please give a few words that come to mind when you read the
following words: a)
Canada b) Metal c) the sky d) Money e) Porn movies f) Metal shirts g)
Recording costs h) Food?
a) The leaf on the flag b) Heavy c) Skycald d) Buy my
upcoming demo! e) Yeah Tracy Lords and
Savannah rule! f) 80s Metal
shirts are rare! g) Fucking high for a bastard like me! h) I’m into meat
and heavy drinking!
Okay Taan my extreme thanks and appreciation for taking the
time to fill this interview out! Please plug the merchandise you have
available and give some last words to the readers?
Thanks a lot brother for all your support! Hope to receive
some metal from Canadian and American metal freaks! Keep your eye on the
upcoming demo “Die By The Sword”, available for 5 USD! Hail and Kill!
IRONSWORD, P.O. Box 4, 2780 – Oeiras, PORTUGAL
– “Promo Tape” 1995 + 1998
Oh man! Fucking amazing pure ‘80s
power/heavy metal. That will have you punching the air with your fingers
out in goat horns and headbanging in unison. The guitar riffs sound so
classic as they backdrop some unforgettable choruses. Ironswrod bring to
mind bands like Manowar, Warlock, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Grim Reaper and more.
It is hard not to list a lot of influences as almost every song on these
promo tapes sounds different but always representing pure heavy metal. Did I
mention this is a one man band and that one man is Tann (Who was in
Moonspell for their MCD and debut album). He is one talented individual and
his vocals pull off high piercing screams (something almost no retro bands
are even attempting!) and smoking smooth solos. I bow to the might and magic
of Ironsword! Metal brothers unite!! (Review by Dale Roy)