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What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
George: In my junior years I discovered rock and metal music from my father, I was curious and since the moment I heard this stuff, that changed my musical perception into something extraordinary. It was the beginning of my musical journey. In addition, there were a few bands at that time that played in my hometown and that was my turning point to begin playing the guitar in order to start performing live shows. Furthermore, I created my own songs and that was the moment I realized that I needed a band. After a few efforts I met Sani and that was it. It was an immediate fit and after a few experiments we ended up creating our musical style. So, I really cannot imagine myself doing something else!
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
George: Occasionally we like to do some sports depending on the season and our endurance. Our creativity is positively affected, as we feel fresher to offer more to our music!
How long has your band been around?
Symeon: We have been active since 2004 and after a long process trying to find our musical identity and solid band members, both musically and individually, our musical style finalized in 2021 with the release of our upcoming album ‘Define the Sinner’ on September 10th 2021 by Symmetric Records. The band is consisted by me (Symeon Sanidas - drums), by George Larentzakis (guitars, backing vocals), by Rindra Rado (bass) and by Veandok (vocals).
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
Symeon: We play pure power metal with heavy and epic riffs. Me and George take almost all the decisions for the band and we are in charge of everything. George is our maestro, the composer of our music and I write most of the lyrics and the vocal lines, with George’s help where needed. George writes fantastic music and the source of his material comes from inner stuff we all have within us. Of course, as we are getting older our mind become more mature and that, has positive impact in the quality of our songs.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
Symeon: We always believed that the band name has to be one strong word. Also we thought that one word will reflect better the quality of our songs and the image of the band and we were right. Fire is a one of the strongest elements and we wanted to put it on the band name, so after careful research we ended up to SUBFIRE.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
Symeon: Throughout the years we have played many live shows and festivals. The second best I think it was back in March 2015 in a place called ‘Mike’s Irish’ in Athens. It was a festival with many bands and we played awesome, the reaction of the audience was amazing and we felt really good. I believe that the best show was in October 2017 in a place called ‘Remedy’ in Athens. We were so good that it was it was the first time I thought ‘we are good, we have to be great, so work more and harder’. That show motivates us to write many songs for ‘Define the Sinner’.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
Symeon: We are a band that has played only in Greece, we have dreams for the future. One of our biggest dreams is to perform to Wacken Festival, I believe is the dream of every band. In addition there are also places we would like to visit and play such as Rio and Australia and of course Scandinavia and England. For now, we remain focus to our goal, to the release of our album and after that, with careful steps, we hope to achieve our desires.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
Symeon: I would like to play along with Andre Olbrich on guitars, with Tobias Sammet on vocals, with Marco Hietala on bass and backing vocals and with Jens Johansson on keyboards and if I have to pick a drummer I would say Mike Portnoy, my dreamband. And of course, the bands I would like to play with is Helloween, Gamma Ray, Judas Priest, Iced Earth and Blind Guardian,
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
Symeon: I would say that talent is not enough, work more, work harder, just work. Work until you bleed, work endless nights, sacrifice personal time and I guarantee that you will be rewarded. To my younger self I would urge him to be more patient and open minded.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
George: PRACTISE HARDER!
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
George: Although it’s for personal reasons, I would say “Fairytale” which is dedicated to my wife!
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
George: We like to play all our songs so far. I think that “Sacred Destinies”, “Fate”, “Strength & Hope” and “Fairytale” are the most requested at the moment!
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
George: At this point I want to mention that the songs are written by me while the melodic vocal lines by Symeon. First comes the inspiration of the basic structure of the songs and on this composition we add the melodic vocal line and the lyrics. Of course there are a few more corrective steps until the final version of the songs, but most of the time this is how we work.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
Symeon: We play our music because we like this style, power metal elevates the mood and gives a lot of energy, both in spirit and in body. We would like people to embrace that we create and feel the positive note we try to impart to them. It’s so important to us the immediate communication with the fans on stage, and for our fans the goal is, when the show has been completed, to leave the place we played full and in high spirit.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
George: There were several disagreements until we came to the final line up and sound of the band, but with Symeon we’ re like brothers and he is also my best man so there was no doubt that we would continue until the end!
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
George: We spent the last year in the studio and at the moment we are very focused on releasing the album first. The fact that we are returning to our daily routine is something very positive, there are no official plans for live performances yet, although we are talking about autumn or winter. So stay tuned!