Interview with Anuryzm
By: Rak Hiasat and Mujtaba Badr - 2012-12-01
Since the beginning, the Progressive Metal band, Anuryzm (from Lebanon, 2003) have been awarded a respectable position in both the Middle Eastern, and the international Metal community with their latest record, “Worm's Eye View”. Since gaining such acclaim is an immense accomplishment, Jorzine team members, Rak Hiasat and Mujtaba Badr contacted the band to figure out a little bit more about them.
JZ: As we know, Anuryzm started in Lebanon as a group of college friends; can you guys tell us more about the band's first days?
Those were some of the best times for me. All the guys lived close to each other up in the mountains in Lebanon and I was the only one that had to drive there all the time, but it was worth it. We’d just jam tunes and hang out. We loved creating music and listening to albums together. When I re-banded in Toronto, it was pretty much the same thing but on a more serious level considering we marketed the band heavily, built a studio, and played shows across the city to different audiences.
JZ: Why do you guys use the name Anuryzm, what does it mean and who picked it?
When the band started, we felt we had something original to offer to the Lebanese scene at the time where everyone was trying to be in a black or death metal band. And because some people told us that the songs sounded new and fresh, together we decided to name the band A New Rhythm. One day we were hanging out with friends, and one of them told us how funny it would be to hear someone with a heavy middle-eastern accent say the name. It would sound something like: A NOO REZM. After laughing and joking about it for a while, we fixed it to ANURYZM and it just stuck. And contrary to popular belief, it has absolutely no relation to Nirvana or brain aneurisms!
JZ: You recorded your first song when the band first formed as a Power/Progressive Metal group. Why did you pick this genre and what are your main influences?
This might sound weird, but you don’t pick the genre, it picks you. I hated the idea of being limited to four walls and I really wanted the liberty of creating a mix of anything from alternative rock to extreme metal. And once I started writing new material, friends that listened to it could easily label it as progressive music. I didn’t and still don’t really care much for labeling, but for all intensive purposes we maintain that label and it suits us fine.
I’m mostly influenced by modern and classic progressive rock and metal music that sounds great. For soloing, i’ve always really focused on Marty Friedman, Dimebag Darrell, Slash, and Alex Skolnick. I think those guys are stellar because they play the perfect solo at the perfect time every time. And I want people to remember a solo after it’s done and not just be a passing moment. I’m not into the ‘flying off the fret board’ type of playing, it just sounds too bland for me but I respect those that can do it because you know they put in the hours everyday to reach that level.
JZ: We all know that November 2005 was a really hard time for the band, after losing the Middle Eastern talent that was Bernard Moussalli, what more can you guys share with us about Bernard's journey with the band?
Berni was a great guitar player, a great friend and brother, and the sweetest person you could ever meet. He was always there for us and always brought laughs and smiles along with him. It’s hard to believe he’s gone, but I’m glad to have many fond memories. Before Anuryzm, he had his own extreme metal band called Sepia Seraph that had just started to take off in the local scene, and he also dedicated a lot of his time to photography and producing independent films. He was such a creative person in every aspect of his life, and I loved that about him. He really inspired me to stay focused and creative, and I try to do that every single day of my life. With Anuryzm, we co-wrote some songs, and we did share the stage a few times, but not long after I had to leave the country and everything started to go downhill.
JZ: You guys have released a very good album entitled, “Worm's Eye View”. When it came to selecting the songs to be featured, how did you choose?
It wasn’t like I had a list of 30 tracks to chose from. Starting out, I knew what kind of album I wanted, what ideas I wanted, and that I wanted to display those over 8 tracks. From the old repertoire, Killing Time and Skygazing made the list because those songs best defined the old band at its peak. Then, the six remaining tracks were created after I left Lebanon. Nadeem then joined the band and helped me perfect those songs and added the final touch, which were the lyrics and melodies.
JZ: Tell us more about your collaboration with Martin Lopez, how did you guys reach him and convince him to take a part in your album?
Martin had heard the demo tracks posted on myspace and emailed me to tell me that they sounded great! At the time, I had been desperately trying to put a band together to record the debut and Martin’s timing was perfect and obviously very unexpected. I immediately asked him if he’d be interested in playing on the record, he was more than enthusiastic, and the rest is history.
JZ: What about the other metal star who had shared his talent on your album, Uri Dijk (Textures, Ethereal)?
I’ve been listening to Textures for some few years now and I always loved how their old synth player Richard Rietdijk experimented with his synthesizers. I thought that because Anuryzm’s music was very guitar driven, it would be great to try to have something like that on the album, nothing too flashy but yet very effective. Although Richard was busy and couldn’t do it, I stumbled on Uri right after he had just joined the band. I listened to his demos and I knew instantly that he would do great on the record. Unfortunately due to time constraints, we were only able to have his input on one track, but the final product sounds amazing!
JZ: You guys will be the opening band for the internationally known Avenged Sevenfold, share with us your thoughts and expectation for this event.
It definitely feels good! We are all pumped and ready to bring on the “wall of sound” as Milton calls it, haha. Fans can expect a great night! We are also looking forward to hopefully meet the guys from A7X and hear their set!
JZ: After your show with Avenged Sevenfold, what’s next for you?
Party it up then hit the sack, haha. There are a few live shows planned for summer and fall. It’s definitely going to be a busy year for us as we are still promoting ‘Worm’s Eye View’. With all that, we’re also going to shoot a video-clip next month and we’ve also already begun work on the second album.
JZ: What is your favorite song to perform live?
It’s a tie between Killing Time and Fragmenting The Soul.
JZ: Recently you guys put up a promo video on your official Facebook fan page, can you give us a rough idea of the upcoming music video?
We’ll begin shooting mid-May and we’ll announce more details about that later.
JZ: So guys, as your finals words, what do you want to say to your fans in the Middle East and around the world about the future of Anuryzm?
Thank you all for your support, we feel really lucky to have so much positivity around us. The future looks bright and we’ve only just begun. We really hope that one day we get to tour and come to your towns and cities and put out a fantastic show for you!