DYNAMIC LIGHTS was founded in Italy in 1997. Right from the start the band tried to create a new, refreshing sound and first of all to write some music to express their feelings. The progressive metal you can hear on SHAPE is the result of this. During 2004 the band worked on that album and in promotion of this release Dynamic Lights will join Nightingale during their upcoming 10th anniversary tour In Europe this month. The band will also do several shows In Italy and In October they will play on the well-known Prog Power Festival in The Netherlands. Check out the review I wrote about Shape and enjoy the Interview I had with the guys...

Your debut album SHAPE got great reviews all over, were you surprised by that?

It's great to see such a good response all over the world, we have worked hard to finish this album, and we are pretty satisfied with the result, so we are always glad to receive good reviews like yours. And yes, it's a good surprise for us, too. We will continue to promote our album and we hope to receive the same good results.

How did you guys meet and who came up with the idea to form a band?

Before Dynamic Lights band was formed with the actual line-up, we all played in different bands in the same city, so we already knew each other. Marco and Raffaele were the first to play together as Dynamic Lights, then it was Matteo's turn, and then Simone and Giovanni joined the band. We had some changes inside the band that eventually took us to this line up which is the most representative for our music and gives the right balance to it. The idea was the same for everyone - to create and play music where everyone could give his best, with creativity and originality without any compromise.

Why and when did you decide that you were going to play progressive rock/metal music?

We have never really decided to play that kind of genre, I mean we've never said: "OK, let's do some progressive metal" - we just follow what we feel and the result can probably fit in this genre for his evolution and progression. So we're not necessary linked to particular progressive rock or metal bands.

Who came up with the great name of the band and does it perhaps have a deeper meaning?

It's a great name chosen by the whole band. After some discussions we thought that "Dynamic Lights" was the best name to represent what we would like to transmit to people. It's important for us because it includes all the ideas we'd like to express through our music: the movement, the evolution and everything that is far from being static - lights and colours that mean the shadings of the feelings. So it's also the right name to represent our music style.

Your musical influences seem to be Wolverine, Fates Warning and Pain Of Salvation, am I right. And why these particular bands?

Our music can be described like that, but our music influences are different, and to name just these bands is not properly correct. We are honoured to be compared to these great bands, but we don't want to play like them. We listen to a lot of different music; each component of the band has a different background and his own personal style.

Where do you get your inspiration?

We get inspiration from everything regarding our life and our experiences. We all write music and every member of the band gives his contribution and his personal touch to the compositions.

Could you tell something about the songwriting process for Shape?

Sure, all the songs started from an idea of each one of us, then everyone gives something to the song, and usually we are really free during the composition time. We try to decide what kind of direction the song will take, and what we would like to tell with our music.

What are the lyrics about, do they deal with politics or are they rather based on personal experiences?

We've never thought to give a politic meaning to our songs; we always try to write a lyric that fits perfectly with the song and the music - it can be a story or a thought, just a dream or something that comes in mind when we hear the song. It can be related to the real life or not, as for the music we don't put any frontiers to that composition.

Have you ever considered singing in Italian?

No, since we think that singing in English can give us the opportunity to be heard and understood all around the world. It's also the reason why we try to spread our music not only through Italian channels. You know, there's not too much space in Italy for our kind of music, and you can understand that singing in Italian would probably close even more chances for us.

The piano is very dominant throughout the complete album, whose idea was this and will it be/become a trademark of the band?

We never decide to follow guidelines in the writing process of a song, so the piano parts came in a natural way since Giovanni is a great piano player. We're happy if something in our music can leave a footprint when you listen to it, so if the trademark that comes out from our CD is the piano, we're satisfied about that.

Who had the great idea to ask Jamina Jansson as a guest vocalist for the opening track?

The idea came from Matteo: during the writing of the lyrics and while listening to the song's melodies, he thought that a female vocal part would fit perfectly in this song. He was impressed by the performance of Jamina who also sang in a Wolverine's song. Speaking with Stefan (Wolverine's singer and friend of Matteo) we realised that this guest participation could be done. So "In the hands of a siren" was born as you can listen it now. We hope that one day we will be able to get a chance to perform this song live with Jamina.

How did you guys end up with DVS Records?

It all started when we sent our EP "Resurrection" for the ProgPower festival selections. Then Renè Janssen of DVS Records listened to our music because he also is one of the ProgPower's organiser. He was impressed by the music and he decided to contact us. After many conversations we've finally arrived to a contract deal, and from that point it all went well and everything is going great now!

In my review I had some comment on the pronunciation of some English words by your singer, does that bother you?

No, it's normal that he has his Italian accent, since we all are Italians. Anyway a lot of Italian bands have this problem and we know this, but we will try to improve ourselves.

Of course you guys cannot live from your music, not yet at least, what are your day jobs?

We cannot live from our music but we live for the music! Each one of us is studying at the University, and sometimes we try to arrange some little jobs.

What music do you listen to at home, or in your car?

Each member of Dynamic Lights likes different kinds of music, so it's really difficult to name the bands. Anyway Matteo listens from hard rock to R'n'B, soul music and more. Raffaele loves electronic music, world music and Peter Gabriel. Marco changes a lot but he is so far impressed by Fates Warning and Meshuggah's creations. Giovanni has his own roots into classical music. Simone listens to a lot of genres too, but actually he likes to study Fusion and Jazz music.

You will be doing a few gigs soon, are you nervous already, what will you be playing and which band will support you?

We are not nervous at the moment, we are pretty excited, and probably we will become crazy just before going on stage. We will be touring with Nightingale and Tomorrow's Eve. Then we'll try to organise some gigs here in Italy, and then in October we'll come back in Holland for the great ProgPower. We are really satisfied with the gigs we will do and we hope to continue to play a lot, since we think that doing live shows is an important part for a band's life.

Last question, which is your favourite track and why?

We don't have a favourite track: each song has different elements and can express different feelings in different moments. We know Matteo likes a lot "In the hands of a siren", because it really is a complete song with delicate and strong melodies, but overall because there is an extraordinary female part! We don't think this is the best song of the album, every song has a different important meaning for us.

Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions and good luck with your excellent album and all the best for your musical future.

Thank you Martien for the review and the interview! Keep up with the good work you're doing. Thank you for giving us this opportunity to spread our music through the world. See you all on tour or at this year ProgPower Festival. For the people who are interested in our music it is possible to download samples of our songs and a full track on our website at www.dynamiclights.net. There you will also find contacts and all the information and news regarding the band! If you like what you hear visit our label website at www.dvsrecords.com! Ciao from Dynamic Lights.

Interview by Martien Koolen,