While Italy’s Boarders has been around since the late eighties, the group did not release the metal and thrash influenced sounds of its full length debut, The World Hates Me, until the spring of 2007. Melding elements of the melodic and the aggressive, the album delivers a variety of styles certain to appeal to fans of Bride, X-Sinner, Barren Cross, Deliverance, Megadeth and Tourniquet. Recently I conducted an online interview with Boarders lead vocalist and guitarist Egidio, who provides detail in regards to the bands background and musical influences, the writing and recording process surrounding The World Hates Me and the groups future plans as well.
Lets start off by discussing the history of Boarders. Specifically, when did the band form and how did its members meet?
Hi! First of all I’d like to thank you for your interest in our band! We formed in 1988, when thrash metal was at its highest level, to play a sort of mainstream US thrash. Megadeth, Testament and Exodus were our main inspirations. I met the other band members at school, we were very very young at the time (almost 20 years have passed now!).
I would like to know more about your musical background. What are your musical influences? And what bands did you listen to while growing up?
Apart from the three bands I mentioned above, we were a lot into hard rock such as AC/DC, D.A.D (from Denmark), Thin Lizzy. I was also in to old school Punk rock (Sex Pistols, Ramones) and into 80’s pop. We also used to listen to early Type O Negative which was one of the best band from the 90’s, at least for us!
When did you start singing and when did you know that you wanted to front a rock band?
Oh! I guess I was 14 or something. I just wanted to play guitar and I was really fond of bands like AC/DC, Pink Floyd, etc. When we started the band we couldn’t find a suitable singer, so I started playing and singing, and that’s why a band like Megadeth and Dave Mustaine himself were really inspiring.
Boarders is somewhat of an unconventional name for a band. How did you come up with the name Boarders? And does it have any special meaning?
When we formed, the bass player was one of the few big fans (in Italy, at least) of the German band Running Wild. At that time, RW issued a live album, named Ready for Boarding. All the concepts around that band where related to pirates world, so we’d like the idea of “boarding”, and that’s why we choose that name. After few English lessons, we understood that the meaning of boarders isn’t precisely the one we thought, but we kept it anyway.
How would you describe your music for those who haven't heard Boarders yet?
A mix of classic metal and thrash metal and hard rock. We should call it Thrash Rock to be honest! We pay particular attention to melodies and the message in the background of our music, which is strongly Christian based and positive. We put special emphasis on guitars, vocals based on a solid drum-bass groove.
If you had your choice, what bands would you like to tour with?
I’d like to tour with AC/DC or, if I had the chance, with Thin Lizzy and Phil Lynnot.
Earlier this spring Boarders released a new album entitled The World Hates Me. Why don`t you go ahead and tell us a little bit about it, specifically the writing and recording process.
We started to record without many of the lyrics and with no idea (we would) issue a record one day. We just wanted to put out a CD, in the best possible way (to showcase) the band in terms of (its) technical and creative skills. It happened then, that certain songs came out to be better than we thought so we started thinking about the possibility to issue a record. It was really strange because, for certain songs, I entered the studio to sing with no lyrics and no melody at all (for instance, that was the case for “True Rebellion”).
Are you happy with the way the album turned out? And how has the response been so far?
Definitely yes. I think it was by far the best record we could produce. Everything was done without (our) own money and with the help of Stefano Parodi (i.e. the Studio Engineer). The response from the webzines (has been) pretty good, but we did not spend too much in promotion because it’s very difficult to do it without big money. At the moment, QLR/Weathertop, our label, issued 1000 copies of The World Hates Me but we don’t know how many copies of it have been sold.
How did Boarders get in touch with Markus Schibler (organizer of the Elements of Rock Festival)? And why was he chosen as the executive producer of The World Hates Me?
We played at a festival named Rock On The Rock, in Italy, which is a Christian Festival. Markus was there and he liked the show so much that he invited us to play at his Swiss festival (Elements of Rock) and proposed to pay for the mastering and publishing of the record. He’s actually the founder of Weathertop Productions, and he joined Quam Libet Records (a Swiss label of friends of his) to do the job. He also founded The Hard Way Metal TV with Nando Rohner, a web TV (program) entirely dedicated to metal in all its forms.
What songs from The World Hates Me do you like the most and why?
My favourite song is “True Rebellion”, because of the groove, the vocals and the lyrics. We really like to start our gigs with that songs.
Please tell me what the song "Schmerzgaren" is about? Why does it have a title in German?
Yes, “Schmertzgarten” means Garden of Sorrow. The title is in German first of all because we like that language very much, and then because it talks about Nazi concentration camps and how the people from Israel have been persecuted.
How did you come up with the title The World Hates Me? And what significance does it have?
The title of the album, which is also the title of an instrumental song, is taken from the Gospel of John, and it’s related to how the world looks at (the) Christian Faith. If truth exists (and, by the way, I strongly believe that) that is just one, and not many truths, and the world did hate it when it came in our live in the form of a man, Jesus. I don’t’ think a man could be more close to the truth of what Jesus, as – for who believes that – He is the truth. That’s why I like to think that the world hates the truth, and that’s why Jesus said, ”if the world hates you, you know it hated me before”.
What are the future plans for you and the band? And do you plan to perform live or record a follow up to The World Hates Me?
Yes we plan to record and issue another CD, probably in the beginning of 2009. Meanwhile, we’ll be back to performing live starting in February 2008.
I understand that a copy of The World Hates Me has been sent to Dave Mustaine of Megadeth. What has his response been to both the album and the band?
Unfortunately no (response) at all. Our bass player works for a music service company, and they do the main festivals in Italy. So he had the chance to meet Mustaine in person for a few seconds right after the gig. I honestly don’t know if the CD has ever left Italian soil
Thank you so much for you time, and I hope we’ll get the chance to play in the states soon, and maybe (meet) personally!
Egidio & Boarders