STORMY ATMOSPHERE (for Rock Hard Magazine #31)

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Dnes nad naším územím vládne búrková atmosféra. Prihnala sa k nám z ďalekého Izraela ako neočakávaná horúca strela, elektrizujúca ako výbuchy v Teslovom laboratóriu a zároveň okúzľujúca ako šarmantná Dina Shulman. Na moju kanonádu otázok trpezlivo odpovedal spevák Teddy Shvets, človek s hĺbavou dušou a veľkým metalovým srdcom. Otvorte si dáždniky, prvé kvapky už bubnujú po metalových hlavách.

Interview was prepared by Erik Nádudvari (Rock Hard Magazine #31)rock hard magazine 31

1) STORMY ATMOSPHERE is quite unknown territory for me. Can you please introduce your band?
We define our band as a Progressive Metal band, but we have gothic and folk metal elements too. Inspired by Classical music, Classical Rock, Progressive Rock and many other genres, we still do our best to create something on our own. It's all about combining different stuff, making it beautiful and smart, but also heavy and headbanging.

2) There is a time gap of six years between the albums “ColorBlind“ and “Pent Letters“. Do you need such a long time to create new material or, as usual, many things just had happened?
The second one is true. We have dozens of ideas playing in our heads all the time, so I guess if it was an ideal world for music, we'd release an album every two months. But we had a lot of things going on – good ones, like festivals, concerts etc. but also less cheering, such as finding new members, a daily job to make money for the living, and so on.

3) Loving books I have found the cover artwork very interesting. Who is the author and how is that connected to the lyrics and the music?
The author of the cover is an Israeli artist Tony Yakovenko. He created this cover for us, after we described the idea of the album to him. It's a one-story, a conceptual album. You can read the whole story in our Wikipedia page, but basically the story is about books that save people.

4) When writing music for the new album, is it a team work or do you work separately? Where do you live in Israel, if I may ask?
Israel is quite a small country, so we all live an hour away from each other at the most. Usually ideas come from all of us and we mix them together. That's what makes it so fun after all – when you play a song you know that it's your baby too, feeling like a proud parent of your art.

5) What work scheme do you use in studio? Everything should be linked and “pre-programmed” to the detail or sometimes you give a chance to improvisation? Who was the producer?
Though we try hard to plan our recordings and come well –prepared, there is always an element of improvisation. Sometimes we even surprise ourselves with interesting turns that accidently happen. For instance, when we recorded the song "Outcome", the guitarist made a mistake in the last chord, but it suddenly sounded so cool we decided to leave it like that. "Pent Letters" was made by us together with Erez Yohanan, a famous Israeli metal producer, who works with Orphaned Land, Amaseffer, Orpheus Blade and many other great bands and projects.

6) How were the two voices split between Teddy Shvets and Dina Shulman? Do you sing for other bands?
It probably started as a Beauty/Beast thing, but then we felt like going further to many kinds of duets and chorales. There is no dominance of me or Dina, they switch parts between back vocals and the main ones. And as for other bands - well, few years ago we both had some side projects, like recording for some friendly musicians or singing in local choirs, but today Stormy Atmosphere is the one and only band for us both.

stormy atmosphere band7) I know that you have some roots in Ukraine. How was your Ukraine tour going in September 2015?
It was wonderful! The audience was great, the label did it's best to provide us all that needed and the experience was just priceless! You know, it's amazing, but rock and metal lovers and fans are the same everywhere. Until we had a chance to go abroad, we actually couldn't believe how transnational Rock and Metal can be.

8) In general, do you think you can compare audience in Israel and Ukraine when playing music there on stage?
As I said, we were amazed by the likeness of energies projected by rock and metal fans everywhere. Still – a home is a home, we love our local fans and they are irreplaceable, but we had moments in Ukraine that in a middle of a show it felt like home! Actually, the same thing happened with Slovakian and Polish fans in our tour with Mike Terrana, and with Georgians, when we played on Tbilisi JamFest 2015!

9) My following question is hackneyed, but how is metal music accepted in Israel?
Well, unfortunately it's not the most popular musical genre. But the fans we do have, they are the salt of the earth! They are devoted and supportive; some fans feel it's their duty to visit every concert in the country, to support the bands and the genre. So we just have faith someday Rock and Metal will be as popular as in Europe at least.

10) Can you say a few words about your cooperation and relationships with Metal Scrap Records?
Well, Ukraine is going through hard times in general, but the label does its best to help us spread the word of Stormy Atmosphere all over. In September 14 we had a worldwide release of "Pent Letters", our songs reached places on a globe they probably wouldn't do without Metal Scrap Records. As mentioned before, after the album release they arranged a supporting tour across Ukraine for us and did their best to make it fun and as comfortable as it could be. I believe it was a right decision to work with them, and would recommend them to other bands, which are looking for a label.

11) Have you been thinking about the next step as a new level for STORMY ATMOSPHERE in future? (technically, musically, stage show, etc.)
Of course. We haven't reached all we wish yet. There is a long way ahead and we can't wait to take the next step towards it. Along with making more good music and recording new albums, we also will keep working on more surprises for the audience on stage. So as always – stay tuned for new events and updates!

12) At the end of this interview I´d like to ask you whether is possible to see you in Slovakia and Czech Republic in 2016?
We had a chance to play at Nitra with Mike Terrana, and it was just unforgettable! Slovakians are wonderful, warm and welcoming audience. We had so much fun then, so we will do our best to come back. And as to Czech Republic… well all of us been to Prague for vacation, some of us – twice or more – the people and the beer are of the best in the world! And Metal is all about good people and a good beer.

13) I´d like to thank you for your time and this occasion to interview such an interesting band as STORMY ATMOSPHERE really is. Thank you, guys and I wish you all the best. Hope to see you.
Thank you very much for this chance to share our thoughts and feelings with Progressive and Metal fans of Rock Hard. We also hope to see you in the near future!


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