Fields of Glass CD Release Party Interview By: Mike Andes
Photos by: LizM Photography
Friday June 25 was a night of Metal and Mayhem. If you live in Orlando and you like the local music scene, chances are you were probably at The Haven, celebrating the Release of Fields of Glass new CD “Origins.” If you weren’t there well then unfortunately you missed out on the show of the Month. Opening the night on behalf of F.O.G was the opera metal voice and enthusiastic sounds of Carnevil. Amanda Millar once again stunned the crowd leaving some wondering how something so sweet looking can deepen her growls as well as the next guy. Just as the crowd was warmed up and ready for more, 5 Billion Dead delivered the performance their reputation is known for. Full of Energy and charisma these guys take control of the stage and hypnotize the crowd, leaving them begging for more. By the time Fields of Glass took the stage, the whole place was on their feet. Gathered around the stage shoulder to shoulder, this didn’t seem to stop this crowd from pushing and slamming into each other as they moshed to the mesmerizing lyrics, and empowering overtures of this eight piece group. Orlandobands.com had the opportunity to interview F.O.G and this is what is happening in their world right now.
OB: There is a TON of experience in this band. Not to mention, several members have been in Orlando’s music scene for many years in different bands. So, the question I have to begin with is why Fields of Glass? What’s the story behind the name (if any)?
Fenris: I’ve been here since the beginning, but this is the sort of band I’ve always wanted to bring about- something the world has never seen. As for the name, there are several “right answers” for that, but I won’t limit you to mine, haha.
D7: With so many bands out there it can be difficult to stand out and make a lasting impression, as one of the original members I can tell you the intention from the beginning was to stand out both musically and visually. The explanation for the name is a complicated one, lets just say the answer can be found through out Origins….sorry for the cryptic answer but it is literally the best I can do.
Kaj: I was glad to get the opportunity to fill in for their previous drummer. Being that I don’t consider myself a gun for hire, it was one of the few bands in town that I would do that for. Their music and stage show was something that really appealed to me. Now that I am a member of the band I get to create music with some of the best people around. As far as the meaning behind the band, Fenris has the best cryptic answer for that.
OB: In early 2007, the band released its first demo. Over the years, the band has gone through changes in the line up. Describe the transition that has most recently taken place before the release of “Origins”.
D7: Both Eric (bass) and Jayson (keyboards) resigned from their posts early this year for personal reasons, however they still remain part of the family. Fields of Glass has always been a tight group and I am honored to be able to call every one of them my friend, so as you can imagine their loss was tough. It was important for us to find people we actually want to be around, simply getting along was not enough. Brian Manowitz (Forever Dawn) and Brian Benton (Noir/Over the Radar) are individuals whos ability speaks for itself, but have also been very close to us far as long as we have existed…..In my opinion , the perfect choices.
Fenris: The right people seem to appear at just the right time: one steps down and another stands ready to step up as if guided by Fate.Things always seem to fall into place that way.
Justice: Brian Manowitz and Brian Bentton. I can’t think of two better people to fall into our laps. They are both so experieced and talented and just fit right in. It was a very easy transition.
OB: F.O.G. has not only a theatrical image, but an almost medieval sense to what they articulate. What is the drive behind the lyrics?
Zia: Some of the lyrics originate from personal experiences. Some originate from events in the world that have happened in the past, are taking place right now, or are bound to happen. In any case, the drive is the same: make it mean something to those listening.
Fenris: Most of my lyrics are drawn from dreams or are analogies for personal experiences and issues that plague the world. I like to give each song several dimensions beyond the literal whenever possible.
OB: Is this collaboration between Fenris and Zia or do other members get involved in the content?
Fenris: Absolutely. Sometimes one leads and the others follow in a given song, but our best material is always the most collaborative.
Zia: Fenris and Zia write the lyrics. Sometimes the original idea of what the song should be about comes from another member.
Justice: Mostly Fenris and Zia but some of us have been influenced by a subject or two and have come up with an idea and Zia and Fenris write lyrics on the subject.
Brian M: All of the lyrics are formed with a giant game of “Telephone” or “Operator” between the band and whoever 10 other people happen to be at the band practice house that day. The last person in the line writes down the word they thought they heard. This makes the lyrics.
OB: F.O.G. has not only made a mark in Orlando’s metal scene, but also has a HUGE following of ALL ages. What allegiances to your “dark crusade” hold for the future of Fields of Glass as a band? Does the band have any plans to tour or expand outside of Orlando?
Justice: I believe we have made a mark in several other scenes besides Orlando such as Tallahassee, St. Augustine, even S.C. If you get a slew of emails from a crowd asking you to come back and asking when are you coming back than i believe you have left some sort of impression. Now that we have a CD we have something to show and push. We plan to expand more.
Brian M: There will slowly but surely be extensive touring outside of the Orlando/Tampa/St. Augustine area.
Kaj: I believe one of the strengths of this band is the ability appeal to many people who like different types of music, not just metal. We strive to make our music a people’s band, not just something musicians will dig. As far as us touring, we plan on as much as possible. I believe we could be big in Europe.
Fenris: We certainly DO plan to expand our territory now that we have “Origins” as our battle standard. We have allies in many of the surrounding cities and are drawing up those plans as we speak.
Nox: Yes, we strive to be more than just a local band. Fields of Glass is a family and a force. We’re currently in the works of bringing this force to other regions of the nation!
OB: Eric Mann from For the Future Productions has taken on the title as “Herald” for the band. So the question I have is why did the band decide to take on management?
Brian M: He got us this interview already didn’t he? He has a solid passion for the band and promoting local music in general. We also needed someone to hold the camera for our scandalous orgy sex tape that will make us famous.
Kaj: With as many members as we have we needed organization and a swift kick in the ass. Eric had the biggest shoes.
Nox: With eight members in the band, it can be really difficult to get things done. We decided that we needed an outside person to really push us — motivate us — to become more than just a local band. Eric Mann is a good friend and fan of ours and we believe that he really has the passion and the drive to take us to the next level.
Justice: We needed someone that sees us outside of US. He has belief, foresight, and drive to help push us to where we want and need to go. He is “The MANN!”
Fenris: We’ve handled everything “in house” in the past, but having the aid of one not technically in the band allows us to devote more focus to the music and show. Eric Mann has a seemingly boundless supply of energy and enthusiasm- a power source we certainly wished to acquire- so we inducted him into the little group.
OB: Has F.O.G. started on material with the new line up? If so, when can fans expect to hear it?
Justice: Yes. In due time. We have and plan on more of a new onslaught of things to come then you can imagine.
D7: We have had alot going on the past few months, but I think new material is something we all look forward to getting into. It will happen…not sure when…but it will
Nox: The past couple months, we’ve been really focused on getting our CD released as well as getting our new members acquainted with our existing material. Now that the CD is released, we can really begin writing new material. I can’t promise a date yet…but we’re all excited to start on the new creations.
Fenris: That’s just what we’re working on now….and you’ll just have to wait!
Brian M: Fans will hear it when we are damn good and ready….. Or when we start writing it.
Zia: The band has mostly been focusing on getting the newer members familiar with the material that is already written. I cannot wait to starting working on new songs with the current lineup. We will try our best to not make our fans have to wait too long.
OB: With new members Brian M. (keys), Nox (cello) and Brian B. (bass), what can you bring to the table that will help define future iniquities with the band?
Nox: Iniquities?… I guess I’m technically the “oldest new” member in the band, since I’ve been with the band since May of last year, haha. I think that the range that the cello offers speaks for itself. The cello has a sorrowful mid-range tone as well as a rich low-end that fits metal well. It’s just another yin & yang element of our band…our music possesses a brutal metal edge that’s, yet, embellished with melody and symphonic elements.
D7: …..Nox…..new?…….Feels like I’ve been stuck with that damn cello forever…….
Fenris: Every new configuration brings its own signature sound, and we’re anticipating great things with our new members.
Brian B: I think I will bring some corn on the cob. My experience with shows and bands in the years gives me a different outlook on what it takes to get attention.
Brian M: Nothing, they all pretty much suck and make the sound super muddy. Each of them thinks they can take up all the bass frequencies they want. But at least they have their own car and gear. That’s a plus.
OB: As I started out saying in the beginning, there is a TON of experience that is in this band, and as much history there is in Fields of Glass, what are the bands thoughts on Orlando’s music scene?
Fenris: Even with the economy the way it is, the scene is still strong. Orlando is a breeding ground for musicians, and the fans are out there hungry for new music. The opportunities are there for those who know how to take them. Music trends (and the economy, for that matter) rise and fall like tides, but Orlando metal will not be washed away!
Brian M: The Orlando Music Scene is still pretty strong, with several very talented bands and bands that have improved a lot over the years. Not as much super heavy stuff right at the moment. Things seem to come in waves. All of a sudden there are a bunch of this style of band, now a bunch of that… Maybe I just don’t know some of the newer local bands around town. One thing is for sure; the local scene audience still rocks the house.
Justice: I LOVE the scene. The people are great and supportive. We are very grateful for the bands, clubs, soundmen, fans, friends, and family that are there for us and all the other local bands.
Zia: The fans are awesome!
Offering up the perfect ending to an electrifying evening was the intense style and powerful riffs of Ring of Scars. Leaving no one disappointed these guys delivered a compelling performance with commanding and impressive strength.
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