Spheric Universe Experience interview (05/2007)

With: Fred [Keyboards], Vince [Guitars], Franck [Vocals]
Conducted by: Jeff (in person)
Published: 08.05.2007

Band profile:

Spheric Universe Experience

- Jeff: Let's go guys! First I will ask you to present Spheric Universe Experience ok? Be good sellers!

Vince: Ok! We started in 1999, Fred (keyboards), John (bass) and myself (guitars) founded a band, Amnesia, it was a Progressive Rock and Metal band. We played a lot in pubs and some local club and we wanted to compose. Two members of the bands didn't want to do that so we chose to split. In 2002, we formed Spheric Universe Experience to compose our own songs. We composed the first album until October 2002 and we recorded a demo in 2003. We were looking for a singer and a drummer so we decided to play the songs on some local radios. We met Franck through one of those radio shows and he had to learn the album in a week to record it. He did! So we chose to keep him in the line-up for good. We recorded the demo with an electronic drum but it was ok and the manager of Intro Metal from Denmark contacted us. We had the opportunity to re-record the demo in a professional studio with a studio drummer and we started to contact labels. Replica contacted us and they released the album in 2005, "Mental Torments."

- Jeff: So now, you'll release your new album "Anima"

Vince: Yeah, the new album will be released on the 26th of March via Replica and the 7th of April all around the world via Sensory Records.

- Jeff: An interesting question, how did you get a deal with Sensory… With Replica, I can understand since they're French so you have probably met them here, but Sensory?

Fred: Well, with Replica it wasn't so easy actually. In fact it's Intro Metal, our Danish management which found a deal with the label.

- Jeff: Oh alright, it's a bit weird isn't it?

Vince: Well, not really. You know, you must have a manager in my opinion. You must have someone who can talk to the labels for the band. It's the best thing to do if you want to get a deal. So Intro Metal found the deal with Replica and Olivier Garnier. They did a good work.

Fred: And of course, they also got the deal with Sensory Records the American label.

- Jeff: Let's talk a bit about the new album… maybe you Franck, you said nothing until now!

Franck: Well, the new album is heavier a bit more powerful. What can I add? (laughs). We have strong guitars and drums on it.

Vince: We wanted to add some powerful and aggressive sounds in addition of the Prog aspect that you were able to find on the first album.

- Jeff: But you still play Progressive Metal right? We agree?

Vince: Definitely, but we now have some choruses that will be a lot easier to remember. We wanted to do something like that anyway.

Fred: The thing is that between the first and second album, we played a lot live. And we saw the reactions of the audience. I mean that we saw which riffs, which themes work or doesn't work. So we decided to do something a bit more "in your face" if you see what I mean but of course we kept the melodic and atmospheric aspect in our music.

-Jeff: Maybe you wanted to have the possibility to catch some other fans too?

Fred: That's right of course, and we wanted to take a lot more pleasure. For us, but also to give something else to the audience!

Franck: And you know, sometime it's a bit frustrating when you sing your song to see that people like the lyrics but are a bit frozen by the technique of the music.

Fred: If the music is too cold, it can put some barriers.

- Jeff: That's right…

Vince: Nowadays, people only listen to an album one time. So you cannot be wrong, you really have to have some great melodies if you want to catch their attention. The first minutes are important…

Fred: but the rest is great too… (laughs)

Vince: Come on, I never say that you have to stop your listening every minute! (laughs)

- Jeff: The album will be released at the end of March. What are you expecting? I remember that the first album got a lot of good reviews so I suppose you're a bit nervous for this one… you have to confirm I mean.

Fred: Oh it was great yes…

Vince: We didn't believe it really. We were excepting something good but…

Fred: Yeah, especially when you know that it wasn't so easy of access.

- Jeff: I remember I had the chance to review it.

Fred: We were lucky. A lot of people liked the first album.

- Jeff: And now? For the new one…

Vince: Well, we kept the elements that the people liked on "Mental Torments". But we put also some new ones to have some new listeners.

Fred: And we worked a lot on the sound too. We worked with a really good sound engineer who lives near our city (Nice), Charles Massabo. His work as well as Tommy Hansen's work for the mastering are both incredible.

Vince: We're proud of it, really.

- Jeff: Can you tell me, how did you work with Tommy? Did you send the CD to him and let it be? Did you meet him?

Fred: We sent the CD and he did everything. With the Internet now, you can communicate easily.

Vince: We simply sent the CD through the postal services (laughs).

Fred: You know, this guy is just incredible. He is not so young, he worked with bands like Helloween you know so he has a lot of experience and he knows what he does. But the incredible thing is that even for our first album, we, a little band from Nice in France had the right to give a lot of instructions and everything. And you know what? He followed everything and when it wasn't ok, he did it again. This guy is a monster. He is a pro and he listens to us.

Vince: We wanted to work with him again for the new album. It was a must.

- Jeff: And for the cover… I just got the CD without anything on it. Who designed the cover?

Vince: Well it's Bjorn…

Fred: Bjorn Goosses of www.killustrations.com did the cover. He is a German graphic artist. For the first album we worked with the great Mattias Norén of Prog Art Studios.

Vince: I must add that we were extremely happy with the work of Mattias, really, but we wanted to have something different to do a real break with the first album.

Fred: His style is a lot more aggressive and he works for Black and Death Metal bands so really, it's a good way to show that our music is a bit different now. And he was extremely patient too. We sent a lot of instructions we asked to change stuff and everything and he did it. His work, this post chaotic scene is just really good.

- Jeff: I didn't see it yet unfortunately…

Fred: So you'll have a big surprise, it gives something more to the music.

- Jeff: Let's go back to the music. Is it a concept album?

Franck: it sounds and looks like a concept album, but it's not. Some songs are linked that's right but it's different stories. They're just linked together by speeches (in Japanese, French, English, Italian) between the songs.

Fred: We wanted to pay homage to some beautiful languages. We sing in English because it's the best language if you want everybody to understand you but we put those speeches between the songs and even if it's not a concept album, all the songs have a link.

- Jeff: And what are the topics of your lyrics?

Vince: It's human stuff… existence, life…

Franck: How can I explain it… It's different situations and you can "understand" these situations and feelings. As an example, "The Key" talks about a mad professor who find the equation of the end of the world. He will be able to use it or not…

Fred: The name of the album "Anima" is a Latin word which means the soul, the spirit. We tell different stories but they're all human stories.

Franck: And we don't give the answer. If you were the professor, what could you do?

Vince: The cover is a good representation of the lyrics. Chaos, but also life with the oasis.

- Jeff: Will you do some live shows now? A festival maybe…

Vince: We have some dates but the labels are working on it.

Franck: We have a good team, Replica doesn't sleep, they work a lot and it's really cool because it's not easy in France when you play Metal.

Fred: Yeah, we need a lot of help…

- Jeff: About Metal, I always ask this question to the bands which are not French to see how it is in their country, but you, French people, how is it for you?

Fred: Historically speaking, not a lot of labels in France ever really care of Metal music. But it's coming I think. Some bands are becoming big. Kragens, Venturia, Fairyland…

- Jeff: Gojira.

Franck: Yes Gojira.

Fred: That's big yes, it's the perfect example. It's moving…

- Jeff: That's right, and if it's not easy for some festivals like La Rotonde, you have also the Hellfest this year which is just amazing…

Fred: Shit! yes (laughs)

Vince: And in France you have a lot of metalheads.

Franck: We have a loyal fan base to this music in France but strangely the media don't play it…

- Jeff: I don't think if there is an answer anyway. And if yes, it's probably not really beautiful…

Fred: You know what? We don't care (laughs). The Metal is here and it will come… you'll see in five years Europe and the World will see us differently.

- Jeff: Our Black Metal scene is the best example IMO, a lot of fans and bands know our bands now.

Fred: Definitely… we have some good hopes.

Franck: But it's not easy, just have a look on the laws concerning the organization of shows, it's horrible…

- Jeff: And the price.. I suppose that you'll be at the POS' show after this interview. €26 for a ticket, that's not nothing…

Fred: Yeah of course, taxes are horrible here. And I don't even talk about the prices of the rights to record a live DVD in France. As an example, POS wanted to record tonight's show but they won't be able to do it because it's just too expensive. BUT! it will change.

- Jeff: Guys, thx a lot, the interview will be read all around the world so come on, spread some words to our readers to close it!

Vince: With Sensory, it will be easy to find the album so if you like Progressive music, have a look on it.

Fred: We want to play live really!

Franck: Yeah definitely, it will be great for the audience but for us too…

Thx to Olivier and Replica and of course to the guys of SUE for their cool and friendly attitude. See you on the road!



Comments: 3   Visited by: 7 users
08.05.2007 - 14:30
Going to see these guys at the ProgPower Scandinavia festival later this year. Really looking forward to this oppertunity after this interview 'cause I didn't knew anything about them until now

Dreams are made so we don't get bored when we sleep
08.05.2007 - 17:29
I saw them last year at the Crescendo festival (a small but free prog rock festival not far from my place). A great surprise I must say. And I've just listened to the samples from the new album available on their website, it's very promising.
La belleza no reside en lo que puedas crear, sino en lo que eres capaz de transmitir
Beauty resides not in what you're able to create, but in what you're able to communicate

Txus, Mägo De Oz
23.08.2009 - 04:54
Liver Failure
Yep.. Anima ended up with some power elements, different from Metal Torments.

Good to know the band.

member of the true crusade against old school heavy metal, early 80s thrash, NWOBHM, traditional doom, first and second wave black metal, old school death metal, US power metal, 70s prog rock and atmospheric doomsludgestoner. o/

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