1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical project?
Iscuron is a Black Metal one-man band based in the North of Italy, born in 2020. The first album “The Nothing Has Defeated Atreyu” was released in January 2021. I’ve been composing and playing all the music and writing all the lyrics and self-managed the whole production process. I’m only outsourcing the artwork and the PR. So far the Iscuron project is not signed with any label and the distribution is digital only, although I’m not excluding possible collaborations and physical releases for the time being.
2.Recently you have released your first album, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical style that you went for on the recording?
I like to describe my music style as Symphonic/Atmospheric/Medieval Black Metal with electronic components. I started listening and playing Black Metal since the mid 90’. The musical style of this recording is probably the sum of the influences I got from this over 20 years long journey through this genre. The basic structure of every song is solidly black metal: blasting drums, tremolo guitar and screams are there most of the time. I then develop the basic structure and riffing adding melodies and atmosphere through many different classical and folk instruments. The electronic component is minor but it’s present in every track. I’m not an expert of electronic music and I don’t even listen to it, however I find electronic instruments helpful to co-build the overall atmosphere. In few words my main goal is, whiting a black metal framework, to create a certain atmosphere and to achieve the goal I’m using any component that I believe can help.
3.Some of your lyrics cover fantasy and medieval themes, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in those topics?
I’m a fan of fantasy and medieval themes in books, movies, music and any other form of art. I studied classical literature in university and since I was a child my family always planned “history driven” trips and visits around Europe. The Lord Of The Rings (the book first and then the movie) also had a strong fascination on me, I know this will sound very obvious. Often my lyrics are actually inspired by real experiences and things that I simply see happening around me, however I prefer to express the themes through fantasy metaphors that fit with my music and that often help being more straight to the point using few words.
4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Iscuron'?
In the local dialect of the small mountain village where I come from and where I live most of the year, the word “iscuron” means “in the darkness”. That is also the title of the last track of the album. I feel that this name is reflective of the atmosphere that I’m trying to create with my music and I’m proud of knowing and sometimes still speaking the old local dialect. The lyrics of the track “Caterina 1667” are also inspired by an actual historical fact that happened in that place few centuries ago.
5.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the album cover?
The artwork, together with the logo, were created by the Russian artist and painter Mosaeye (who has experience with many extreme metal artworks). This is one of the few components that I’m outsourcing, in fact I don’t know if I’m good in making music, but for sure I know that I’m not good with artworks 😊 The painting that I chose reminds me of the woods around the place where I live where I use to walk to get inspiration and I like to see the figure as the spirit that guards those woods through the centuries. I live in a place where nature, wild animals and forests are still predominant and setting the rules for everybody. And I love it.
6.With this project you record everything by yourself, are you open to working with other musicians or do you prefer to work solo?
For this project I felt the need to express 100% myself in any sound, note and word. I see the “one-man” approach similar to a “composer/singer-songwriter” approach although this is not common in Black Metal, that is usually dominated by a “band” approach (although with obvious relevant exceptions). I’m not excluding possible occasional external collaborations with other musicians in the future, however Iscuron will remain a solo project.
7.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for label or have received any interest?
I’m not proactively looking around for a label and I don’t have any discussion in place at present, so far I managed to accomplish what I was looking for by myself. However I’m not closed to collaborations in principle, I’m open to explore any opportunity the future might bring.
8.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black metal?
So far I got mostly very positive reactions by many people in many different Countries and I’m very thankful for that. I was concerned by the reaction to the mix of different styles and most of all by the inclusion of electronic components in my Black Metal music. So far it looks like my intention of using any possible ingredient to achieve the overall atmosphere without betraying the genre was understood.
9.Do you also have any experience working with other bands or musical projects?
Since 1998 I am also a member of another Italian extreme metal band that has a total of 3 members. That band is not releasing anything since over 10 years now, however it is still alive and we are working to finalize an album that we hope to release by the end of the year. More to come.
10.Where do you see yourself heading into as a musician during the future?
Music for me is purely a passion. My only ambition is to be able to go on composing and releasing new albums that I really feel, I’m not hoping to make a living out of it. My goals are purely qualitative. On one hand I would consider myself musically successful if I’ll manage to keep my music “fresh” album by album whilst sticking to a solid Black Metal structure. On another hand I hope to improve as a musician and composer: playing and programming all instruments gives you a lot of room for improvement and for trying new experiments. Just for example, technically speaking, I feel like I have large room for improvement when it comes to my vocals and in the new songs I’m already working on I’m focusing a lot on better drums.
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?
The first record, actually a tape, that I bought was “No prayer for the dying” of Iron Maiden. I quickly switched to more extreme music when I bought a Death Metal compilation by the magazine Terrorizer that I saw by chance in the window of the music shop. I was a fan of horror movies, especially Dario Argento, and I liked both the tape cover (Trey Azagthoth of Morbid Angel playing covered by blood) and the unprecedented bands names (Morbid Angel, Tiamat, Pestilence, Obituary, Malevolent Creation etc.). The spell by Black Metal happened between the final phase of the early Scandinavian scene (Burzum, Emperor, Immortal, Marduk) and the following symphonic/melodic phase (Dimmu Borgir, Cradle Of Filth, Samael, Moonspell, Dissection). Nowadays, although I may get influenced by any music that hear by chance (radio, movies, videogames), I still intentionally listen to Black Metal only. I like many new bands like Vargrav, Severoth, Aorlhac, Forteresse, Ieschure, Zaklon, Oubliette, Totenwache. I also like a lot a couple of other Italian bands: Nazgul and Evol.
12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
I want to use this space to really thank you for your support. The extreme metal underground still exists also thanks to initiatives like yours.