This interview with Patryk Pigeon from the Canadian medieval metal band Howling Syn was done through e-mail in February 2001. All pictures and sound samples are used with permission from the band.

MP3 Dark Chivalry
MP3 Medieval Years
MP3 The Reign Of Evil

Hello, how are you?
Great, thanks.

Could you please give us a short history of your band?
Howling Syn started as a one man computer project in 1998. Due to the unexpected success on and all the fans' letters, I decided to complete the band with Sophia LeMay on vocals and lyrics, and later Eric Mireault, an old friend of mine, on drums (whom you will hear on our first studio album).

How would you describe your music to someone who hasn't heard it yet?
Various influences of dark, symphonic and theatrical metal-goth-medieval.

In May this year you will record your first studio album. What can we expect from this?
You can expect the real thing this time. Of course, it will still include some synths but I'll be playing guitars and bass on the album as well as Eric on drums and Sophia and myself on vocals. There will be approximately 13 songs, some new ones and some you may already know such as Dark Chivalry, Medieval Years, Vampyra's Symphony, Black Moon and The Reign of Evil. Only two songs will be instrumental. It will certainly be the best Howling Syn album up to now. It will be divided into two themes: a vampiric and a medieval concept both in really different styles and moods.

I know that you have been listening a lot to medieval music the last couple of years. Are there any of those bands you would like to recommend?
My favourite is Haggard, an 18-member band that mixes perfectly symphonic medieval music and dark metal. Blind Guardian who caught my attention mostly because of Hansi Kürsch's very original vocals and their music is simply awesome. I also really enjoy listening to movie soundtracks such as Braveheart, Dragonheart and Excalibur.

How long have you been playing music? Were you involved in any other bands prior to Howling Syn?
I've been playing music for 15 years, starting with bass guitar then guitar, piano, drums and music programming. During the last 10 years I've been in a lot of bands, all unknown.

What are your thoughts on the Internet, Napster and mp3s as a way of promoting bands?
The Internet and especially has helped us a lot getting public recognition. Napster is cool but like all artists I certainly don't like seeing all my albums there, but it's ok for promo songs or singles. I really don't have a lot of bad things to say on the Internet as a way of promoting bands because it's what gave us the opportunity of selling over 500 CDs only from our site without being signed by any label.

What do you do in your lives when not playing music?
I'm a web designer, movie and video games junkie and of course everything I do except that and playing music always has something to do with music: writing, producing stuff for friends, and listening to a lot of music.

What plans or goals do you have for the future?
Finding a good label for Howling Syn once the studio CD is done, finding the right guitar player who'll feel the vibes of Howling Syn and playing live everywhere we can.

How is the metal scene in Montreal and Canada at the moment? Are there any new promising bands (except for yourselves)?
The Quebec metal scene has the reputation of having a very aggressive sound and I'm not exactly a fan of extreme music but we have a few bands that I believe understood that aggressivity can be mixed with melodic and powerful metal like Decayed Remains, Unexpect, Blinded by Faith, Transcendence.

What do you think about the following:

a) Friedrich Nietzsche
A freak with a brain

b) Bill Clinton
Cool guy

c) Saddam Hussein

d) The Pope

e) Religion

f) Marquis De Sade
Pushing back the limits of passions

What do you think about the state of the world today? A lot of your songs deal with medieval themes, do you think there were things that were better back then?
I prefer not to think about the state of the world today which is why I always look back to the past. It was pretty much the same back then but at least people had hopes and dreams. And today's songs dealing with all the same everyday topics, who cares about it? But if you take the same topic but add to it a little magic and darkness it brings it in a whole new light. Everyone likes being told stories.

What are your five top bands of all time?
King Diamond, Moonspell, Kiss, Duran Duran, Rush.

Any final words you would like to tell the world?
Thanks to everyone for their support and Stay Evil!

Links of interest:

Howling Syn Official Site