LOMM: Can you give a little biographical and historical info; who is involved in the band, and how did you guys meet up?
Samuel Konter: – The idea of creating a band came to our minds around 2015 I think, we were in a rock/metal festival in Hungary. Zsolt and I were totally sober and we said to ourselves “lets try it one more time, but this time do it for real“. We had projects where we were playing together with Zsolt, but something was missing from them, so we decided to follow a path where we’ll be very conscious about what we are going to do. Of course we were continuously bumped into problems and mistakes, but in a different level. Since the official start of the band which was in 2018, we had quite a few band members on each instruments, cause there was always something that came up to the surface. Those things were in a scale from ‘problems with the attitude’ to ‘the person literally went insane’! But eventually in 2020 the final line up of the band was found and now I can proudly say that I’m in a band with amazing musicians and friends: Zsolt Forgó, Mátyás Erős, Dani Varga and Albert Csobán. Since than we got into the top 25 “Best Emerging Bands of Hungary” as the only metal music group by winning a showcase talent show in Herend and a major governmental showcase competition.
LOMM: Pandemic has taken an emotional toll on everyone yet the arts have been hit especially hard. The musicians are vulnerable to financial upheaval. How have you guys have been holding up?
Samuel Konter: These are dark days in this industry and unfortunately a lot of people suffers because of this situation and the government in Hungary doesn’t give a crap about anyone involved in this industry, except those who has really close connection, friendship with them of course. Especially the background workers, technicians, roads, engineers are left behind. So the overall situation in Hungary is really bad. As much as I can say fortunately, our band is not our number one financial income so this situation for us is not really bad, but we feel the impact by the lack of concerts and opportunities to show ourselves to the world live.
LOMM: On the other hand you seem to have had a productive time. Is that right?
Samuel Konter: Yes we grabbed the occasion and when the first wave of lock-down has started we moved together into a weekend house on Balaton and we were there for 3 months. In that 3 months our new album ‘LIBRA’ was born.
LOMM: Tell us about your genre, what does it means to you, why did you choose this genre?
Samuel Konter: It is a hard question, because I don’t really want to be specified as a genre, our goal is to make music which satisfy our expectations and be able to step out from the dome of “genres” and hope people would say this is so “Heedless Elegance” rather than this is so metalcore or deathcore.
Of course the reason why you find a lot of elements from “heavier modern genres” in our music, because we love those styles, they are really close to our minds, but we are not necessarily using them because we have to, that is the base what comes from us. We want to experiment with a lot of thing in the future.
LOMM: Are you happy with your product? What aspects of it do you think you guys nailed, and what parts do you think you could improve upon?
Samuel Konter: With our new album ‘LIBRA’ I’m 100% happy, I’m really proud to this album and the band that we were able to make it real. We had an expectation and we reached it, so if there is someone out there who doesn’t like it, I’m happy with that as well, because I know we did everything we could to make it as good as we wanted. Of course it doesn’t mean that it can’t be better, everything can be better and we will keep working with new materials to make our vision of music to the next level, but I leave it for the future.
LOMM: How has the overall reception been?
Samuel Konter: Fortunately the overall echo from the album is very positive as much as I know now, we had a lot of heart warming reactions from all around the world, but the experience is fresh, I think a lot of things will happen in the next one year.
LOMM: What is the next step for you? How is the future looking?
Samuel Konter: With our new album “LIBRA” we hope that we will find new opportunities to show ourselves to the world, I really believe it will happen. Our plans are to play as many concerts in as many places to as many people as possible in the next years, and we will continuously work on to make our shows bigger, smellier, more colourful and more professional. We hope that the belief what we have in our music, and the attitude we trying to follow will takes us to where we want to be.
LOMM: Could you tell us about the lyrics / themes /concepts you focus on or plan to focus on? How did the ideas come about, and how do they influence the writing process? Who is writing the lyrics?
Samuel Konter: The bands main motive is the Duality! You can find it in all of our appearances from the music to the clothes we are wearing at the shows. With ‘LIBRA’ we wanted to make a concept album where our main motives could be found as well side by a story. The album is divided into two parts with eight songs in total about a fictional character and it’s inner journey from a murder driven by a long awaited revenge to the dissolving death of himself. The idea came from the avalanche of personal conflicts what we had in the last years.
LOMM: Who is composing the songs?
Samuel Konter: In the first two records Zsolt and I wrote all the materials, but ‘LIBRA’ was a full teamwork.
LOMM: What bands do you draw your inspiration from?
Samuel Konter: I started my “career” with Green Day when I was a child, their CD was the first I’ve ever gotten, after that step by step I started to fall into the heavier stuffs, first Metallica, than my all time favorite band System Of a Down and after all the metalcore deathcore stuffs. I think I can feel the impact of these bands in my vision of music, but these days my influences are coming from other genres and arts. For example mostly these days I’m only listening to the songs of Twenty One Pilots or Ennio Morricone and some electronic musics like Drum and Bass or Goa.
LOMM: Which is more exciting? Being on the road or studio?
Samuel Konter: For me both, but each for a different feeling. In the studio you have a daily routine and the atmosphere of creating something new and the motive of isolation gives you a strange feeling, but a good feeling for sure. If you are on the road a lot of things will happen a lot of impulses will impact you and it is mesmerizing.
LOMM: What first got you into music?
Samuel Konter: I think it was destiny or we can call it a series of coincidences, depends on what you believe in. When I was in kindergarten and in the beginning years of elementary school I was playing on piano, but I gave up, because I hated to practice. In the next few years my only connection with the music was the listening of it. In that time I started to jump into the rock/metal world. After listening to heavier musics, I really started to fall into the drums, it was fascinating for me, and I always wanted to play on it, but never had the chance. When I started high school, my new friends were looking for a drummer, so I immediately told them, I’m your guy. My only problem was that I never played on the drums before and I did not have a drum kit so I started to practice the first song on pillows and I used the floor as a kick drum. I remember the first song I needed to practice was Metallica’s For Whom The Bell Tolls, I was nerves on my official rehearsal day with the band, cause that was the first time for me to actually play on a real drum kit, but when we started, I played the song better than the previous drummer who had years of experiences they said. I think that is where my “career” started. To be honest, I have no idea what I would do if I wasn’t playing in HE.
LOMM: What do you like the best about being a musician? And what is it that you do not like much?
Samuel Konter: It is a hard question, because there are a lot of segments why it is good or bad to be a musician, but I would say for me the best thing about it is that I can live my freedom, my passion, I can release something what I can feel is in my core, and before that I didn’t know how to, and probably the stimulus to let it go would eat me up day by day from the inside if I wasn’t. The only thing what you need to accept if you choose this path is that you will never know if you will prevail or you will be successful, you will live with a constant feel of doubt and insecurity about your future, that is the bad thing about it, but if you can overcome on your fears, there is always a chance.
LOMM: If you weren’t musicians, what would you be doing?
Samuel Konter: I can’t imagine my life now without music, because I think it is connected to my deepest part of my bones. Probably I would fall into a deep depression and self-pity, and I don’t know how could I climb out from it.
LOMM: If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
Samuel Konter: I think the most important thing what I would be glad if I could see in the industry in the near future is a balanced, equal representation of all genres, so the key of your success is not the type of music what you are playing and its “marketability”, but the quality of it. The musicians only job would be to write honest, professional songs and if its truly good, it wouldn’t matter if its a pop metal or a rap song, it will be on the radio represented to a huge amount of people.
LOMM: What’s more important to you? Catering to the audience or music for its own sake?
Samuel Konter: Music for its own sake for sure! People want honesty, they know if something is true. The main reason what music is about is the individual, the creator, the story. The bravery to be honest is the key of making something real and the playground of this fight is the music. I think there is way more about all these than just people going to concerts and listening to music at home or somewhere to satisfy a stimulus in the human body. People unconsciously know what is real when they hearing something, and I’m 100% sure that a musician need to make music for themselves and they can decide if they will give it to a bigger audience as a gift. That is what people really love not a music what was made to satisfy their egos, they want to be in an other mans ego.
LOMM: When you look back your music career, what do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
Samuel Konter: I would say the moment I’m in right now. I’m in a band with amazing musicians and friends, I’m satisfied and proud with our new album and we just started to grow. I’m really proud that we were able to make this staring line.
LOMM: Who would you like to collaborate with?
Samuel Konter: Tyler Joseph from Twenty One Pilots for sure, he is like a “lost brother” to me, he is my biggest influence as an individual artist or performer and I’m sure we would be able to make amazing things together if life would be that generous to open a path in or reality to make it happen.
LOMM: Who would you like to go on a tour with?
Samuel Konter: Parkway Drive, Twenty One Pilots, Iron Maiden.
LOMM: If you could play any festival in the world, which one would you choose? Tell us why.
Samuel Konter: It is a hard question, because there are tons of festivals around the world where I would love to play so if you let me I would divide this question into two parts.
My childhood dream: Nova Rock and Sziget Festival main stages, because when I was younger and I started to play music I always visited these two festivals, I love them so much and they are a huge part of my story, and I always said to myself when I was watching a concert in each of these two places that”how amazing could it be to play these stages”.
My dreams now: I think it would be Wacken. As a metal musician I think that is the top where you can play.
LOMM: What does your collection look like? Mostly Vinyl, Cassettes, CDs, Digital? A bit of everything? A total mess?
Samuel Konter: These days I found my way back to the physical releases and started to understand the real value of it. We know that the industry changed and to make money they are not relevant any more, but they still have their value, and I think people around me are starting to understand this so maybe it will come back to the mainstream. For me Vinyl is the top choice.
LOMM: What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
Samuel Konter: We are based in Budapest Hungary, most of us lives in the capital or in the suburban. Hungary is a small country so the subcultures are small as well. To be honest, it is very hard to prevail as a metal musician in the world, especially in our country. In Hungary there is no proper “industry” and the gap between the underground and mainstream couldn’t be bigger, but there is no middle class. For example a successful metal band in Hungary who plays on big stages on festivals, and have thousands of followers can not be a part of the mainstream, but can not be called underground as well, so what are they? I’ll tell you what, they are mostly amazing musicians who work two jobs as bartenders or delivery guys or an electrician to pay rent and food and stuff, and in occasion, they are playing in front of 5-10 thousand people, but the radios are not playing them, because it’s not acceptable in their visions for the average people. But there are a lot of no name artists with shitty music with nothing to tell, and making a lot of money out of the radio cause that is “acceptable” for the audience. I think we can see the irony. But of course there is a few metal bands in the mainstream who can make good money, but you can ask yourself by right, how they got there under these circumstances? It would be great to develop an industry which pay equal attention to all genres, and pull them up if they are worthy, so the musicians only job would be to pay attention on making real, honest professional songs. If you are looking for bands from Hungary, you definitely need to check out these bands: LAZARVS, Stubborn, As Karma Brings, Meristem and to mention a non metal band, my dear friends ANTARES. Everyone in these bands are wonderful people, and amazing musicians, love them all!
LOMM: You can invite 5 people to a dinner party, from the future, the past, rock stars, a movie characters, you name it. Who are you having dinner with?
Samuel Konter: Okay let’s see, if I could invite anyone I would choose Robert Downy Jr. he would bring the drinks and the big talks, there would be Snoop Dog with his grass from heaven, Lady Gaga with her openness and kindness, Elton John, because I love him and I think we would laugh a lot together and for the last one I would say Gyuri my neighbour for absolute no reason!
LOMM: If you had one message to your fans, what would it be?
Samuel Konter: Try to be positive these days, I know the situation around the world is really bad for everyone, but our bright days are in front of us, because after dark days it will always come.
LOMM: Anything else you think your fans should know?
Samuel Konter: We love you all, and we hope in the future we could have a closer relationship!
LOMM: Thank you for taking the time.
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