1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the musical project?
Mountain Hermit is a Black Metal project officially born in 2012, when I lived in Lazio countryside, before moving to Rome. The project was born as a one-man band, a personal and intimate attempt to give birth and spit out my dark side, something that has characterized me since I was a child.
2.So far you have released 3 demo's and a collaboration, musically how do they differ from each other?
Every Mountain Hermit work embodies one of the facets composing my personality, that is why they are all different. When you will listen to the new work, "Parapsychedelic Eye" (out next July 29th July), a single episode of experimentation, outside the typical canons of black metal orthodoxy, you will realize how Mountain Hermit can be interpreted and plays in several different ways.
3.The project started out in 2012 but waited until 2019 to release any music, can you tell us a little bit more about the earlier days?
I actually have a longer musical history. I started to play the guitar when I was 12 but I started to listen metal when I was about only 10 years old! I played in a couple of underground bands in my hometown in Sicily, between mid 90's and early 2000's, but unfortunately we never released any recorded stuff. We played various lives but nothing more. After those years, for a long time I just played for myself and never published anything. In 2011 I started a solo project of atmospheric and experimental music, “Woods at Dusk” and in the meantime I started to play in a really natural way some black metal riff… I waited a couple of years more to release my music (both Woods at Dusk and Mountain Hermit saw the light in 2019). After the first release, with Mountain Hermit I started to feel the artistic need to play and release my music.
4.So far all of the music has been instrumental, are you open to using any vocals or lyrics in the future?
Yes, I actually do. After the collaboration with Vintermørke I decided I would like to partner with a singer, but I do not think I will get myself to writing lyrics in the very next future. However it is something I consider for the future.
5.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Mountain Hermit'?
Mountain Hermit is my very deep essence, my soul.
The mountain is the place that I love with the woods acting as a temple and altar and representing the closest place to transcendence.
The Hermit is the priest who guides souls along this journey through music. To reach certain levels of gnosis and wisdom he passes through isolation and solitude and strict contact with nature, he feels very distant from the corrupted human nature and he is not strictly interested in human contacts.
6.With this project you record everything by yourself but have worked with other musicians in the past, how would you compare the two?
I compose every song that I play and I usually want total control on everything because I compose for all the instruments involved (in the past, lyrics and vocals too). In my opinion also mix and mastering are part of art creation so I chose to perform them myself.
With bands, in the past, I had the luck to work with good musicians so explaining and communicating certain concepts was easy, but when you are on your own it means that you undertake total control on everything. As I said, now I found a singer and I chose to leave him total artistic freedom and we merge our ideas.
7.Recently you have done a collaboration with 'Vintermørke', how would you compare your musical style to his?
Mountain Hermit and Vintermørke are totally different concepts of black metal but we discovered something great in our collaboration… we like playing together to combine the raw souls of both projects and the atmospheric and experimental side of Mountain Hermit. We both have issues with mankind so there are good common extra musical roots too.
8.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black metal?
Mountain Hermit is actually a pure underground project and it has been appreciated by a small niche of people from various parts of the globe. Generally, I received positive vibes and support but I also met fans of the black metal scene who do not appreciate my musical proposal.
9.Are you currently involved with any other bands or musical projects these days?
Yes, I am. My project “Woods at Dusk” is actually quite lively. I received a proposal by a label to release all the singles in an album.
Maybe I will start something new with this project in the next future.
10.When can we expect a full length and also where do you see yourself heading into musically during the future?
As I said, I am releasing a work called "Parapsychedelic Eye" in these days. It is over 40 minutes and composed by five songs. This will be the latest instrumental work of Mountain Hermit. Also the collaboration EP with Vintermørke is coming and after this there is a project for a split work with a black metal band from Asia.
I do not know the future of the project yet but I am sure about one thing: I am an artist and I still need to express myself by releasing a lot of music.
11.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
I have been and still am (despite the age) one of those kids crazy about heavy metal in all its forms (although I remain tied exclusively 80s and 90s metal) but I also listen to classical music, jazz, blues, punk/hardcore, psychedelic music, lots of ambient/drone music, industrial and much more.
12.According to the website page you also have an interest spiritual, mystic, dark, extreme, esoteric and paranormal related issues, can you tell us a little bit more about these interests?
As a child I started to develop an interest for paranormal and mystic/esoteric/spiritual topics but also for extreme and sick themes, like gore, serial killers and similar. I grew up reading with curiosity the books of authors like H. P. Lovecraft and about the most disparate things like parapsychology, demonology or black arts like goetia or necromancy ecc. ecc. In the mature age, I started to study also various religions, sacred texts and the esoteric paths behind them so I can say that my life is characterized by a contact between me and the metaphysical world and black metal is another personal instrument to communicate with it.
13.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
I would like to thank you once again for both the reviews of "Lucus" and "Gnostic Isolation", for this interview and for all the support that every day you give to the underground black metal scene, forgotten by the mainstream channels.