Tag Archive: Metal

summer music festival


Festival season is upon us! If you live or are planning to travel to Europe this summer, we have compiled a list of exception music events happening this summer! Below are a variety of events that will have groups from around the world performing rock, alternative, metal, folk, and more! You can visit the websites provided for each event to check out the artist roster and purchase tickets.


Rock Im Park

Nürnberg, Germany

03 June –  05 June


This Is Not a Love Song

Nîmes, France

03 June – 05 June


Sweden Rock Festival

Sölvesborg, Sweden

08 June -11 June


Nova Rock Festival

Nickelsdorf, Austria

09 June –  12 June



Landgraaf, Netherlands

10 June –  12 June


Download Festival

Paris, France

10 June – 12 June


Hellfest Summer Open Air

Clisson, France

17 June-19 June


Graspop Metal Meeting

Dessel, Belgium

17 June – 19 June


INmusic festival

Zagreb, Croatia

20 June –  22 June


Glastonbury Festival

Glastonbury, UK

22 June – 26 June



Copenhagen, Denmark

23 June –  25 June


Solidays Festival

Paris, France

24 June –  26 June


Hurricane Festival

Bremen, Germany

24 June –  26 June


Southside Festival

Neuhausen ob Eck, Germany

24 June –  26 June



Roskilde, Denmark

25 June –  02 July


Volt Festival

Sopron, Hungary

29 June – 02 July


Provinssirock Festival

Seinäjoki, Finland

30 June –  02 July


Rock Werchter

Werchter, Belgium

30 June –  03 July


Open Air St. Gallen

St. Gallen, Switzerland

30 June –  03 July



Eurockéennes de Belfort
Belfort, France
01 July –  03 July

Tuska Open Air Metal Festival
Helsinki, Finland
01 July –  03 July

Rock for People
Hradec Králové, Czech Republic
03 July –  05 July

Exit Festival
Novi Sad, Serbia
07 July –  10 July

Bilbao BBK Live
Bilbao, Spain
07 July – 09 July

Ruisrock Festival
Turku, Finland
08 July – 10 July

Weert, Netherlands
09 July – 10 July

Vieilles Charrues Festival
Carhaix, France
14 July –  17 July

Woodstock Festival Poland
Kostrzyn, Poland
14 July – 16 July 2016

Truck Festival
Oxford, UK
15 July –  17 July

Ilosaarirock Festival
Joensuu, Finland
15 July –  17 July

Tienen, Belgium
29 July –  31 July

Ripley, UK
29 July – 31 July


Arenal Sound
Castellón, Spain
04 August 07 August

Wacken Open Air
Wacken, Germany
04 August –  06 August

Lokerse Feesten
Lokeren, Belgium
05 August – 14 August

Off Festival
Katowice, Poland
05 August –  07 August

Sziget Festival
Budapest, Hungary
10 August –  17 August

La Route du Rock
Saint-Malo, France
11 August –  14 August

Rocco del Schlacko
Püttlingen , Germany
11 August  – 13 August

Bloodstock Open Air
Walton upon Trent, UK
11 August – 14 August

Hasselt, Belgium
17 August – 20 August

Summer Breeze
Dinkelsbühl, Germany
17 August –  20 August

Highfield Festival
Störmthal, Germany
19 August –  21 August

Biddinghuizen, Netherlands
19 August – 21 August

Reading Festival
Reading, UK
26 August – 28 August

Rock en Seine
Paris, France
26 August –  28 August

Header_DenigrataA Lecturer in Popular Music at a British Higher Education institution, Denigrata Herself is undertaking her PhD in women in extreme metal. She is also the front woman/guitarist in Denigrata, an experimental black metal collective. Denigrata have coined the term noir concrête for their music, meaning the avant-garde dark noise initiated by Pierre Schaeffer and Karlheinz Stockhausen finds a different rhizomatic existence within their contemporary black metal performance space.

Denigrata Herself is a gender theorist whose research and publications to date focus on body performativity, reclamation of female space, tattooing, graphic novels, death metal and black metal. She is part of the International Society for the Study of Metal Music (ISMMS) and sits on various academic and equal rights boards in the UK.

For over a decade she was a lead guitarist in British death metal bands, she was signed to and worked for various independent record labels and now devotes her time to lecturing, researching and performing. She is choir master for her departmental chamber choir and presents annual post-modern renderings of canonical classical pieces with her choir, a string quartet, a contemporary band and Ableton performers.

Blog December 2014
Northern Darkness Calling: screaming into the void

Metal thrives through local communities and culture, drawing its performers, bloggers, promoters and audience from local sources, from people moved by the music who want to add and enliven their scene through their contribution. So, when people who put great thought, time and effort in to doing this are not supported by their communities, it seems like a miserable dislocation of priorities.

I am speaking here of the existence of zines; not webzines, not a social media imitation of what magazines used to be, a ghost that haunts the online space if you will, but an actual, hard copy analogue artefact. To leaf through the personally crafted and often hard-sought interviews, the artwork and the manner in which they have been lovingly crafted, offers something special.

As music becomes ever more assimilated into the digital make-believe that passes for contemporary existence, the blatant intangibility of culture grows and replicates and ceases to occupy space in the real world. A metal zine that you pay a couple of quid for, that you impatiently wait for to arrive in the post, that you cannot wait to unwrap and engage with, means something – it is real. Without getting embroiled into a Lacanian dialectic as whether anything is in fact, real (something I actually theoretically engage with) the simple fact that I can hold the zine in my hands, that it has been created, not by some megacorporation but by individuals who believe in the music rather than returned revenue, helps to reaffirm my existence in the real world. If I was to read it online, the experience would be a divorced, separated and somehow distanced ontology that doesn’t fulfil what it purports to represent. Don’t get me wrong, I love reading online sources as much as the next person, but owning a copy, knowing it is in my collection, means I get to engage with the artistic process of the zine on my own terms. I feel like I am part of it, the art object. Online, I do not feel like I am part of anything, I am just another faceless disembodied entity screaming into the void…

I am a particular fan and supporter of Northern Darkness zine. Hailing from the north of England and now in its second printing, with another one scheduled for the New Year, this has been an example of a zine that makes me deeply happy. It offers you something rare – personal effort for something that is loved: extreme metal. Zines are not created or maintained for money, unlike music magazines, their existence is solely down to a few committed writers, musicians and artists who want to do it. I have blogged about the significance and importance of intent before and yet again, it becomes a significant talking point. The desire to want to do something artistic, for your community, that everyone can enjoy, should be supported and when it isn’t, something in me becomes equally riled and disappointed.

The importance of promotion to cottage industries cannot be overstated – you need to get the word out that this is what you are putting your effort into and, much like unsigned bands, social media is a logical (albeit problematic) way of doing this. However, it is always important to know your demographic so when this has been identified and established, promoting on peoples pages should not be a problem. Yet to some it is and I struggle to analyse why.

You are into extreme metal yes? You clearly identify and like all the relevant pages on Facebook that signify that you are a member of this community yet you get pissy when people want to share what they are doing, after all isn’t this what social media is for…. And I’m not talking about the Facebook ‘over-sharers’ that, with the power of one status, suck you into their intolerable arguments or dinner pictures, Lord knows there are enough of them. I’m talking of once or twice a month posts that promote the zine. Hardly dominating your newsfeed is it. But to then be a dick about it, shows a nasty element of a growing paradigm of online intolerance.

Yes, the metal scene is really suffering at the hands of that at the moment. As ‘metal-gate’ would have you believe various quite frankly, bigoted fuckwits thinking their positions in bands automatically legitimises their backwards ideologies, but supporting a zine should not be part of a general closed-minded attitude that fails to help maintain a vibrant cultural scene. In fact, it acts as a direct counter to instances such as ‘metal-gate’ because it facilitates solidarity; focus on the actual music, instead of giving space to racist and sexist idiots who think it is ok to behave like a cunt. The online space has given them too much already.

The creators of the zine have suffered some disappointing attitudes and comments from, what I have always thought of, as an open-minded and supportive scene. I would really hate to think I was wrong and I refuse to be disheartened because of the few closed minded individuals who seem to forget that when you are mean and nasty online, you are in fact still talking to a human being. What does this say about our community?! That we are unwilling to support fellow creative people in their efforts? That we are not interested in new interviews and album reviews or live performances? Then I have to ask this, what the fuck are you even doing in extreme metal?! Because these are precisely the reasons our communities exist in the first place. We should applaud those willing to give of their free time, for no wages, their desire to offer us something real, something tangible. Who else would bother?

This is actually part of a wider discourse that extends to the support of local bands, local venues, local promoters and independent record labels. If we do not support our cultural communities’ efforts then there is a very simple result – there won’t be any. So before you get all snippy when someone promotes on your page, just think twice before you put your contemptuous fingers to the keyboard: question your response before you hit send, you may be affecting the growth of your scene.

Comments are welcome. Denigrata Herself can be contacted at denigrataherself@horizonvumusic.com

A Lecturer in Popular Music at a British Higher Education institution, Denigrata Herself is undertaking her PhD in women in extreme metal. She is also the front woman/guitarist in Denigrata, an experimental black metal collective. Denigrata have coined the term noir concrête for their music, meaning the avant-garde dark noise initiated by Pierre Schaeffer and Karlheinz Stockhausen finds a different rhizomatic existence within their contemporary black metal performance space.

Denigrata Herself is a gender theorist whose research and publications to date focus on body performativity, reclamation of female space, tattooing, graphic novels, death metal and black metal. She is part of the International Society for the Study of Metal Music (ISMMS) and sits on various academic and equal rights boards in the UK.

For over a decade she was a lead guitarist in British death metal bands, she was signed to and worked for various independent record labels and now devotes her time to lecturing, researching and performing. She is choir master for her departmental chamber choir and presents annual post-modern renderings of canonical classical pieces with her choir, a string quartet, a contemporary band and Ableton performers.

4 0ctober 2014

Mastodon and the Meat Market: how the mighty have fallen

Metal has always defined itself in antagonism to the mainstream, and consequently does not speak from inside it. It has sat on the margins, the periphery, and created itself a space to critique the symbolic order. It has used philosophy, bigotry, consumerism, politics and other concerns in its art, its lyrical form and video. As such, metal has always strived to embody a different way of doing things, not always successfully but it is widely acknowledged that it is different from the mainstream. As a result, its acolytes also embody a different ideological perspective and these issues together, manifest a space that is freer to create, to be, to exist.

This has often meant that the rebellious human spirit has found a welcome home in metal, allowing like minds to forge a path that is not prescribed by the hegemony, that is more open and free thinking. This is certainly one of the reasons I love metal. It is the musical form, the ideological position and that space for self-expression that has supported my evolution as a person, as a woman and as a musician.

As with any music genre, as it has grown, certain specifics that were once archetypes become embedded as ‘the way to do things’ in metal. Sometimes these are not particularly helpful, such as the patriarchal, white demography of the music but existing inside this, is arguably a less constructed space than we find in mainstream hegemonic society. As I was growing up, I found this mainstream a too prescriptive place to exist. I was not prepared to be a palimpsest, to have my own narrative rewritten by society because I was expected, through socialisation, to be one kind of woman only. My ontology was more expansive. So, metal became my home, as a fan and eventually as an extreme metal performer.

We become astute in gauging what constitutes metal, musically and aesthetically. Precisely because we position ourselves in antagonism to the mainstream, we have defined ourselves accordingly. When a signifier presents as ‘un-metal’ we are pretty quick in identifying it and analysing it. This can be a riff or a vocal style or it can be how a band looks and their how their artwork somehow fails to embody metal principles. Perhaps I am being too generous but I hope not.

Through my own developing feminist ontology, I have always worked very hard at being an extreme metal guitarist and vocalist. You have to if you’re going to be good, gain respect for your art and carve out a space for your own performance. I am still doing this, ten years later. Whilst there is sexism in metal, that I tackle as much as I am able, it is a sexism that is more readily identifiable than the complexities of the mainstream and therefore, for me, it is a more tangible realm to navigate. However…sometimes metal fucks up, gets misdirected for any number of reasons and sets us back.

It is also important for me to say this: my feminism, my ontology and my way of being a woman is no more or less important than anyone else’s. Women should be free to do anything they want and to engage with their bodies, with society and music however they wish. That is my feminism. So to see women twerking in Mastodon’s video is actually not my problem. My problem is women being objectified for the purpose of selling a song. My problem, to break it down even further, is ethnic women dancing within a white male context for white male pleasure. That to me is unacceptable. It is also unacceptable because metal knows better than to be so lazy, stereotypical and trite.

So it comes as a surprise to no-one except perhaps Mastodon, that their new video for ‘The Motherload’ has poked a bear. That is, a fucking angry feminist bear that would rather take a shit in the woods than have to endure watching that video again. It has also riled the metal community because we have a history of trying to be different from the mainstream, rather than riding on any trending coat tails that happen to be fashionable at any given moment. But before we all get riled up in a swarthy social media hot mess, let us examine the evidence…

The video begins in a typically Mastodon artistic style, where one can easily read the symbology of the white man bent double under the weight of a huge bell, chiming the death knells for our existence. Are we being primed for an existential engagement within a musical context? Well, this is certainly where it seems to be going. There is an obvious Western religious engagement here, with an apple and a man reaching for the forbidden fruit which is nothing new for metal but interesting nonetheless. Metal has never been the shy or retiring genre unwilling to engage with grand theory, religious dogma and philosophy. The band is playing and something is scratching at the corners of my mind although I’m unsure just what it is yet…

Then boom, at 45 seconds in, as the man carrying the bell, who we encouraged through the positioning of the camera, to identify with, walks behind a line of ethnic women twerking. Wait, what?! I rewind the video just to double check what I’m seeing and low I am greeted by lyrca-clad female bodies thrusting. As the video progresses, the song meanders along and the twerking bottoms dominate not only the screen but the space for the song itself. I am unsure what exactly I’m being encouraged to give my attention to. I thought it was supposed to be the music…

There appears to be some kind of competitive twerk-off, the band obviously debated whether or not the psychedelic fractals should disappear crevice-wise and decided against it (because that would have been too much right?!), everyone hugs and then presumably goes home for a nice cup of tea. So what is it exactly that is troubling me? Well, a number of things as it goes. Let us focus on the music first. Now I’m not sure at what point over the last couple of years I began to realise that Mastodon, that mighty, hungry and well-respected band who released some game changing albums and reinvigorated metal by infusing it with energy, seriously good fucking riffs and THOSE DRUMS faded to what I now see before me. I have seen them live, bought their albums, learnt the whole of Remission and Leviathan on the guitar because I was fucking entranced by their song writing and not that it is possible to always write the same music for a entire career but there is one vital thing I have to question with this song – intent. Did they feel that compulsion to write this? Did they wake up at 3 in the morning with that burning inspiration? What is the drive behind this because quite frankly the song sounds like a young, newly formed band who really really want to sound like Mastodon but aren’t good enough at their stagecraft yet. I’m not criticising the playing, I am however criticising the composition. Why is intent so important I hear you ask? Well I’ll tell you. You cannot force the creative process. You cannot paint, for example, if you do not want to and whilst the pressures of being in a band with labels requesting you stick to a release schedule, you cannot compromise your art, particularly if you have such an impressive back catalogue like Mastodon. There are a great many bands who have managed to strike a balance between song writing and label concerns. However, what I see with ‘The Motherload’ is a band grown bloated on their success, so much so that the hunger seems to have been sated. The riff, whilst it has echoes of their previous contrapuntal style, seems like it is missing the passion and whilst there is nothing wrong with common time 4/4 drumming, it seems like the lazy option for such an accomplished performer. If you can write like Bach for example, why would you choose to write like One Direction…

Consequently the song comes across as bland, it is boring and even the band look bored playing it. So one begins to wonder, is this why there are twerkers? To detract from the banality of the song? To refocus the audience to not pay that much attention to a half-arsed bit of writing?

And so to consider the function of power differentials in the video. To tackle the twerking first seems to make the most sense. Let me be perfectly clear – I have no problem with twerking. It is not for me to have a problem with twerking because women can do what they like. I don’t know a lot about the cultural intricacies of twerking but I do know about metal and there is a race dichotomy to apply here – twerking is black and metal is white. Now what is the most incongruous part of this video is precisely its inclusion in a predominantly white male popular music video. It is not an intrinsic part of metal culture and women do not, generally speaking perform like this in metal videos. Instead, we are usually relegated to poles, strippers and other simply fabulously objectifying practices so race and diaspora aside, women are no better off in terms of our representation. However, why Mastodon have agreed to cultural misappropriation in this video is what we should be questioning. The video looks like two separate genres squashed together and whilst there is nothing inherently bad about this, in fact I rather relish the collision, this is a really bad example of how to do it. Like when Fear Factory tried to ‘do techno’. Nope. It’s shit. Stop it.

It is important to acknowledge some glaringly obvious and tired gender binaries that this video enshrines and perpetuates. We have a typically white male band, invested with their own agency, performing at the apex of masculinity, with autonomy and independence. Nothing new there right? Male – subject. We then have ethnic female dancers (yes, classically trained according to http://sexpoleandmma.tumblr.com/post/98998006844/mastodonopinion and how wonderful that is! Better that than a bunch of women just falling over their own, er, arses). The women in this video are performing for men – for the band and for the fans. And the assumption is that the fans are all male. Oh right, but I am a fan, what about me? How is this video hailing me? How is it interpellating me? The simple fact is that it isn’t. It isn’t acknowledging me as a female fan at all, unless I am to look at the wobbling bottoms, at Mastodon’s suggestion, as a paragon of female agency? I think not. So, annoyingly, we have female – object. How very boring. How reductive, irritating and boring.

Now also according to this blog, all the women were treated really nicely, were respected and made to feel welcome. Well, good, I’m glad about this but what were they expecting exactly? What preconceptions of metal did they harbour for them to be pleasantly surprised by their good treatment?! News flash – this is how human beings are supposed to be treated. Don’t be surprised by it, expect it! Why shouldn’t you be treated well?! Were you expecting to be treated like meat? Like objects? I wonder…Another issue that comes up in the blog is the acknowledgement of the women’s good education, as if this fact is meant to counter the use of their reified bodies in the video. Oh you’re all really well educated and doing PhDs?! How phenomenally useful that is because that really comes across in the video. That arse in my face and I’m thinking, oh I bet her Cultural Theory will be applicable here so she can deconstruct just how many fucking layers of subjugation this functions on…Barthes would be proud. If the twerking in this video were meant as some kind of rebuttal (boom!) at white women doing it (ahem, Miley!) then I really think Rihanna nailed it in her video for ‘Pour It Up’. That surely was the end of that particular ownership argument.

But I hear the clatter of keyboard warriors caps lock shouting ‘but they were paid to do it!’ and yes indeed, they were and they did a fine job. It is not with the twerkers that I find the problem. It is with Mastodon and the patriarchal structure of metal. Dearest boys, you have been lazy in assuming this video would pass as something nearing even ok metal standards, particularly given your previous excellence. Resorting to cultural misappropriation, sexism, racism and the promotion of tired power differentials to carry a shadow of your former glory is not going to wash. Dom Lawson’s piece in The Guardian this week identified some of this rather well.

And no, ethnic women twerking for white men is just not ok because white men are the rule makers and controllers. They are the hegemony. They are the ones in power. For those who do not fit this remit, we are the marginalised, the other, the culturally disenfranchised. So simply by having the big three, race, gender and class in one video, Mastodon have managed to fuck up everything they may have wished their video to convey. That is of course, unless what they wanted to say was ‘white male musicians are the best, black women are there to be objectified and exocitised and their arses are more important than their right to agency and we’re better than everyone else because we’re men with guitars’ then yeah. Great. Well done. I’m impressed.

Mastodon, you could have done something great here but instead you have opted for this. Girls, I’m jolly glad you all had a smashing time and were treated like human beings coz ya know, we all belong, but just spare a moment for the women in metal who work fucking hard based on our musical abilities, not the cultural and sexual currency of our naked arses. Given the patriarchal structure of not only metal, but the music industry in general, it is important that women occupy space for themselves, not to be used in the means of production to sell white male music to other white males.

Comments are welcome. Denigrata Herself can be contacted at denigrataherself@horizonvumusic.com

What’s The Buzz ?

Thanks to our affiliation with Women Of Substance Radio, we’ve been introduced to LEAH. The art of LEAH is one of diverse influence: Haunting celtic melodies, mysterious eastern vibes, heavy symphonic rhythm, and most of all… A voice that will utterly enchant and inspire you.

Listen to LEAH and you may hear a touch of Loreena McKennitt, a glimpse of Enya, or of something darker like Lacuna Coil or Nightwish. Mostly you will hear something unique from this emerging artist from British Columbia, Canada… And it will please your senses.

LEAH has accumulated a catalog of original songs. When you hear her work, you agree her song writing knows no limits: From symphonic metal, to organic singer-songwriter ballads, to ethereal electronica—she does it all—almost effortlessly. She specializes in the darker, more mystical melodies which gives Christmas carols and ancient Irish poems a haunting and tantalizing twist.

LEAH also has a work ethic that much of the young generation is missing. As a homeschooling mother, writer and prolific songwriter, she knows how to get things done—and done well. If anyone is determined to succeed, it is LEAH.

LEAH also understands the times, and “the times, they are a-changing” for the music industry. That is why LEAH has decided to pursue a more global approach to her career. Thanks to the beauty of social media, LEAH is already gaining thousands of loyal followers world-wide, from Turkey, to Taiwan, to Australia, to all over the US–purely by word-of-mouth!

Because LEAH is also an entrepreneur and businesswoman at heart, she understands her potential value to the licencing and publishing side of the industry. Despite the hurdles of being an independent artist and stay-at-home mom, the industry is gravitating toward her.

LEAH will succeed; it’s only a matter of time.

Visit LEAH at http://www.leahthemusic.com and on Facebook.

Elie Bertrand is perhaps best known as the drummer for Scarlet Sins http://www.scarletsinsonline.com. She was born on was born on December 25th 1989.  She grew up  in Chambly, a suburb of Montreal, Quebec and began playing drums at 5 years old.

Elie, thanks so much for taking time to talk to us. We have really been looking forward to speaking with you.Following on our brief introduction, tell us what happened in your musical development once you started playing drums?

EB: I did start taking lessons at the age of 5.  I  joined a music program in grade 5 where I would go to school in the morning and go to music school in the afternoon. We would have all different classes like theory, composition, history, etc… I did that for 4 years and then I left the program to focus more on my professional career.  At 14, I started playing professionally in a classic rock and blues cover band. From that point on, I joined a bunch of cover bands, a percussion troop called Insolita, then at 17, I moved to Toronto to joined Scarlet Sins. When that venture ended last November, I moved back to Montreal.  Since then, I’ve been playing as a freelance drummer in different bands and for different artists. Over the past 6 years I have had the chance to open up for DJ Champion, Motley Crue, Vixen, perform on TV, play some huge Festivals like the International Jazz Festival of Montreal, the International Blues Festival of Tremblay, the Ultimate Drum Camp of Orford, the International Cape Breton Drum Festival just to name a few.  It has been pretty amazing and I can not wait to see what’s next!

In terms of your development, who was your major influence (or were your biggests influences)?

EB: I have so many influences for different reasons… I always find it so hard to answer that question briefly because music is like painting. You always use many colours to do a painting, so I have many very different influences. Here are a few drummers Dennis Chambers, Carter Beauford, Paul Brochu, Daniel Adair, Chris Adler, Ange E. Curcio, Emmanuelle Caplette, Carmine Appice… I could go on and on but those ones definitively have had a major impact on my playing.

Describe your sound? What makes Elie, Elie as drummer?

EB: Wow… What a cool question… Well, definitively there are a lot of funk and blues signatures in my playing because that’s what I played the mostwhen I started… It’s my base. There is a lot of latin even though I can’t really play latin drums because my dad use to play a lot of Cuban percussions so I often through in clave over some metal beat. And there are also a lot of paradiddles because it’s my favourite rudiment in the world. I always say: “It’s all about paradiddles!”

Tell us a little about life with Scarlet Sins? Any great moment that sticks in you mind? Any good stories you can tell us on or off-stage with the band?

EB:  There are so many great memories I keep from this venture. I learned a lot. It was my introduction to the hard rock and metal world. I always loved listening to that kind of music but was never part of an original band that played this before. We had so much fun together. We’ve shared very special moments. We had a lot of huge opportunities and a lot of very cool off stage moments.

Here’s a pretty cool one. OMG. I still laugh my ass off thinking about it: That happened in Seattle when we went down in 2007 to play the

PowerBox Festival. Cris and Syl were sharing a room and T and I shared another. In the middle of the night T got up because she was jetlag or what ever and well being a lady, she decided she would put some moisturizer on her face to take care of her beautiful skin… But she mixed up her eye-lash glue tube and her moisturizer tube because her eyes weren’t wide open or I don’t know… So she basically glued her face and eyes open… So she puts the glue on her face, goes back to bed and well she obviously realized something was wrong, so she tried to stay as quiet as possible and went to the washroom to clean it off but she hit herself on her bass case that was in the way and made so much noise so it woke me up but it wasn’t enough for me to get out of bed… The next morning I asked her what the heck happened… She told me the story… And of course I was rolling on the floor… The first thing I did was to run to Syl and Cris’s room… Told them the story and we must laughed for a good 10 minutes straight… It was SO hilarious…

What has been the highlight of your career to-date?

EB: I have been very fortunate since the beginning of my career. I played during huge events and concerts with some awesome artists but I have to say as a drummer when I played the International Cape Breton Festival 2010 alongside some of the most respected drummers in the world I was in heaven. The lineup was absolutely insane. I shared moments with some of my idols. We laughed, we jammed, we talked, we partied… It was amazing. I learned so much about everything that weekend. It was amazing!

What makes a good drummer?

EB: Musicality. A drummer can have the best techniques, be super fast, have perfect time… It’s not interesting to listen and watch a drummer play that doesn’t have musicality. At least I don’t think so. I like musicians that live the music. They feel it coming down their veins. They are not playing the song they are the song. It makes such a big difference. They listen to everything that’s going on and they communicate their feeling through music. It’s absolutely mesmerizing to live those moments and to watch them happen!

In researching for our meeting with you we took a look at readily available lists of greatest drummers. Honestly, Elie, it’s really hard to find a list with one (let alone more than one) female drummer – in addition to yourself, other names come to mind such as Cindy Blackman, Sheila E., Carla Azur, Sandy West, Caroline Rue…but really, in your view, why is it seemingly so hard for female drummers to get recognition?

EB: I don’t think it’s hard to get recognition. I think women are just not as interested to play that particular instrument as men are. The ratio in the music industry is 20% female 80% male. Most of that 20% are singers and classical musicians. You know you could also ask why aren’t there more men dancing? I think it’s just a lack of interest. A woman on drums is like a woman on the hockey team, people notice it more maybe and might act differently. Sometimes it makes it easier sometimes not. We all have as individuals different challenges and we just have to deal with it. Such is life I think.

HorizonVU Music works with emerging artists. We always do our best to coach young musicians as to the ups and downs of the music business. What words of advice do you pass along to young musicians wanting to be stars? Help us out.

EB: I think the 2 most important things to remember in this business but also in general in life are to have the passion and to believe in yourself.

No matter what you do make sure you’re always happy. Don’t let people bring you down. Learn from everything and everyone and move on quickly from the disappointing moments. Someone recently told me this and I thought it was absolutely brilliant: “Things are never permanent, nor the bad nor the positive things”. When something good happens you have to enjoy every moments of it, be grateful for it and when you’re having a rougher patch remember that it’s not forever and remind yourself why you’re doing this in the first place: the passion and the love of music or what ever what you’re doing. It’s not always easy but if you have the passion you’ll always go back to that happy place.

One final question…What is Elie doing now and what are your plans for the future?

EB: Well well lots and lots. I have a very busy fall coming up. I’ll be performing with my different projects and I am also getting ready to play the Montreal Drum Festival which is a HUGE deal for me because I remember attending the event at the age of 5 and saying that one day I would play there. This dream came true. It is the biggest drum event in Canada so I am very excited about it. 2 months to go woot woot!

El, thanks so much for taking time out to talk to us – we love your work and hope you’ll come back and visit with us.  Before we finish up, I have to run this one by you…While we were talking my friend here was good enough to actually look up “paradiddle”…Here goes – accordingto Merriam-Webster, the origin of the word is unknown, first known use 1927, and the word refers to a quick succession of drumbeats slower than a roll and alternating left- and right-hand strokes in a typical L-R-L-L, R-L-R-R pattern. There you have it!

Before wrapping up, we want to share your vid “Laid To Rest – Lamb Of God – Drum Cover” – very cool!

EB: Phil this was an absolute pleasure. Thank you very much!

To know all about where, when, with , and with whom Elie is  playing along with current news stay tune to her website: http://www.eliebertrand.com/ and join my Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/ssarras#!/pages/Elie-Bertrand-Drummer/118426748191961?ref=ts.

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