Ahoy! A black flag appeared on the horizon and below it the Italian GREAT MASTER to tell us, the land people, about their raids. I had to face the superiority, face the two - Giorgio Paccenini (keyboards) and Massimo "Max" David (bass). Lots of words have been said and you can also read about how to manage chat groups and which great minds of classical music influenced our crew…
Hey Great Master! We finally have a chance to talk to you too! Can you introduce us yourself as a band?
Giorgio: We are a Venetian power metal band that orbits the provinces of Venice, Padua and Treviso. Great Master were born in the early 90s, from an idea of Jahn Carlini that he then shared with some friends. The idea was to play classic, epic metal. Over the years there have been various line up changes. With the current line up things started between 2018 and 2019.
I´ve reviewed your latest album „Thy Harbour Inn“, but I would be interested in what you´d say about this album. How would you describe it?
Giorgio: It is the result of a project that has remained on standby. After Jahn selected some Nordic shanties we started arranging them and giving them the typical style of the Great Masters: we "greatmasterized" them.
What is your inspiration for writing the music? I mean, there are not „classic themes“ as life and love …
Max: Our intent is mainly to tell stories. Whether they are of the sea, an element to which we are very attached, or any other historical theme that we are passionate about, we try to give it a sense also musically.
We are looking for evocative arrangements and we hope to be able to convey to the listeners the emotion we feel while writing the songs.
Surviving the past year and a half was not easy for many. How have you managed to survive and also be productive?
Max: So let's say that during the entire block period caused by the virus we have been in contact practically every day. We are very close and a strong bond of friendship has been created, in addition to musical collaboration. Suffice it to say that we will have 3 or 4 whatsapp groups ranging from the most serious, that is, where we exchange ideas for the various needs of the group, both productive and administrative, to the pure fun group, where we write the most incredible bullshit that we can to come to mind.
Other than releasing „Thy Harbour Inn“, how have you spend this time without your fans?
Giorgio: After the live-release of Skull & Bones at the beginnig of the 2020 we are committed to making a “Home made” video in the middle of the Covid period, taking up a song from the album Serenissima, “Black Death”, rearranging it with the current sound of Great Master. From this song we then made a limited edition vinyl, Black Death 2020, which brings as a B-side a Warlord cover. With the block of live shows we decided to invest our time producing an “easy to listen” album that gradually became more and more consistent… I think it’s called something like “Thy Harbour Inn” :P
Max: Fortunately, thanks to social media it is now all easier to keep in touch with fans. It must be said, however, that now we have an immense need to see them live. For a band not performing and not sharing their music is really a big pain.
It looks like now we have „bright times ahead“ – do you have any plans already? Any chance that even non-Italian fans would have chance to see you anytime soon?
Max: With Rock on Agency we are working to be able to organize dates in the coming months. And there is certainly the desire to bring the Great Masters even outside our country. As soon as we have organized everything we will let you know.
There are two bands that promoted pirate metal the most, both in very different way – Running Wild and Alestorm. What´s your opinion on those two crews and do you feel inspired by any of them? If not, who is your inspiration in meaning of music?
Giorgio: The sound of the Great Masters also comes from bands like these, as well as Iron Maiden, Warlord, Manowar, some of the German power metal bands and, obviously, the personal influences of each band members. My personal inspirations are Angra, Transatlantic, Almah, Dream Theater, Queen of the 70s, early Stratovarius and, obviously, classic & movie music (mostly Liszt, Debussy, Rachmaninov, Ravel, Morricone, Williams, Zimmer…)
Max: They are both big names but the most significant for us, without detracting from the other is that of Running Wind. It is no coincidence that on THY we arranged an acoustic version of Treasure Island trying not to distort it and keeping the atmosphere of this fabulous piece as much as possible.
It´s hard to be full time musician, only few have managed to do so. What are your „ordinary life“ jobs?
Giorgio: Ohh, it´s really very hard to be full time musician, it’s true!! In my ordinary life I work as a primary school teacher.
Max: Certainly the full-time musician in this period is very hard and whoever manages to do it has only our esteem. In our case, always managing to match the various commitments, each of us has another job. Who the clerk, who the doctor or the school teacher. Let's say that between music, family and work we cannot complain as commitments (smile).
My questions are over. If there is anything you´d want to add – this is your chance ;)
A big hello to Hellmagazine readers, thank you for your attention.
Thanks also to the editors of this excellent online magazine and thanks to you Samuel who asked us so many good questions.
We all remember that the time of the blocks will end sooner or later and that the Great Masters are ready to bring their music to all the places where they will be invited. Of course, keep listening to the one and only true and genuine music which is METAL in all its forms. A hug and lots of Grog mugs for everyone!