Tha Band: FireForce
Answers by: Erwin Suetens (guitar)
FIREFORCE is Belgian Power Metal at its best. From the very beginning to the end you can feel it in the great riffs and solos of Erwin Suetens. He makes guitar sound as a power metal guitar should, this is, full with emotion and energy. Their third album "Annihilate The Evil” will not leave any power metal head indifferent.
Hello Erwin and welcome back with your new album "Annihilate The Evil", out in September 1st
Hi there, thanks for being interested!
FireForce is a power metal band from Belgium, releasing now your third album, how do you feel about it?
I’m very pleased with the result and I’m pretty sure the fans will like it!
There have been some changes in the line-up in the last years, how is it now?
Well, the line-up is ok but we still have no permanent drummer. It seems it’s very hard to find one who is willing to stay. It’s always a problem to find a motivated one. They mostly don’t realize how much work it is to play in a band like Fireforce. It’s no “kindergarten”, it’s hard work…
"Annihilate The Evil" still delivers a good dose of power metal, but may be not so much as its predecessors, right?
It’s not that much different. It’s still me who writes the songs and I’m not planning to change style or direction. If you mean that there are more mid-tempo songs on the album: you’re right! But it’s not a change of direction, just that I was in a mood to write a few mid-tempo songs… ;-)
All clear, Erwin. How long have you dedicated to the composition of the album and how was it?
I started writing the album in January 2016 and we started recording in October. We made demo’s of the songs in my home studio so Lia (our producer) could become familiar with songs before we went into the studio. It’s always a pleasure to work with him, he’s a good friend of me and he’s the only who can change stuff in my songs…haha!
A guy with “power” haha… Comparing this new album with your previous efforts we can say that it keeps the energy but sounds more versatile?
I always try to make songs that sound different. It’s useless to make 10 songs from the same riff, that’s boring… We try to create a mood that suits the lyrics, so you can immediately recognize each song…
However, looking at the cover artwork we can find an approach more to the power metal than any other thing?
I like a nice cover. I also like a cover that, when you look at it for the tenth time, you always see new details. I think we did that very nicely. If you call this a power metal cover it’s fine by me – I love it!
What are the lyrics about in the album?
Like usual, remember our Combat Metal, our lyrics are all about historical events. To be more specific, battles in history, or events that changed a war, or didn’t change it at all, haha! For example: our first video for the album is “The Boys From Down Under”. It’s about the battle of Long Tan in Vietnam 1966, were just 100 Australian soldiers fought against 2500 North Vietnamese troops and won! Or “Thyra’s Wall”, about the battle between Danes and Prussians in Denmark – inspired by the series 1864 by Ole Bornedal. That fascinated me and I did research about the war, the more than 2000 year old defence system they used, and what went wrong…
A little of a history class then. Any favorite in the album?
They are all my babies… I love them all J
Erwin, what bands have influenced your music?
I like a lot the NWOBHM, the Bay Area thrash and the German and US power metal bands. There are so many good bands it’s impossible to say who influenced me. I leave that to the critics, they know more specific what influences they hear…haha!
Power Metal is perhaps not at the highest moment, but maybe the bands that remain now guarantee a high quality?
It’s important to always deliver quality. Most bands do that, it’s mostly the taste of the people that decides who is more successful, and a big question of promotion of course… The problem is, that the bands with the highest promotional budget, are also the most successful because the smaller ones don’t have the resources… and no one knows them… even though they offer a lot of quality, sometimes more than the “big ones”…
The budget is the budget, sure. How is the Belgian scene nowadays in your opinion?
There are not much power metalbands in Belgium. We have a lot of thrash, death and black. But we’re quite unique in our power metal/thrash approach…
You are used to hit the road very often and very far, what plans do you have in this matter for the upcoming months?
First of all we have a big release show in November here in Belgium. It will be the ONLY show we will play in Belgium in 2017. We do some shows in other countries but limited, and in 2018 we will hit the road in different countries. No details yet…
We await for the news. Any especial moment in you career you will never forget?
Touring with Mystic Prophecy, supporting Artillery, friendships with bands like Tygers of Pan Tang, Omen, Savage and lots more… They are all great guys…and great musicians…
The things I will NEVER forget, that are the most important to me, are the people who help my band grow and being successful – they have my eternal respect. But I also will NEVER forget those who tried to pull us down…Karma will grab them by the balls…
Hahaha so, let’s Karma do his work ... Thank you very much for the fun chat Erwin, wish you a big success with your new album "Annihilate The Evil"!
Thanks for being interested and giving this opportunity for this interview. And to the fans: Join our forces, and grab your copy of “Annihilate The Evil”!
Erwin Suetens, Guitarplayer for Fireforce