by: Brian Meloon
I N D E P E N D E N T F E A T U R E : A E O N
"There is no dead which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even
death may die."
-- H.P. Lovecraft, as quoted by guitarist Paolo Gavocanov
Proving once again that the language of metal knows no
boundaries are Croatia's Aeon. I first heard them in the summer of
1995, when their keyboardist Sinisa "Sipy" Bival sent me copies of
their two demos: demo #1 (1993, when they were still called
Dissection), and demo #2 (1994). They were reviewed way back in CoC
#2, and their second demo was given unending praise. I recently asked
guitarist Paolo Gavocanov and Sipy some questions about the band and
their forthcoming debut album.
Since their inception in 1989 as Dissection, the band has gone
through numerous lineup changes and a name change. Eventually, the
lineup settled down, and has remained constant since the beginning of
1994. However, their name is a different story, as Sipy explains;
"The name has always been a problem, but I don't think we're gonna
change it. I guess that we're not lucky with our name. I mean when
the band was called Dissection, the Swedish guys released their debut
_Somberlain_. We figured it would be appropriate to change the name.
Now I know of 3 different bands with name AEON, but I don't care
about that. We like this name." Hailing from Croatia also made it
difficult for the band. "The scene isn't much here. It could be
better," says Sipy. "I can say that there are more people that are
listening to underground metal bands than bands existing in the
scene. The problem is always the same: lack of equipment, space for
rehearsals and finally there are not so many places where you can
play." Still, the band has managed to promote itself in the European
underground, appearing on Dennis Ippel's compilation tapes _A Waste
of Tape #1 and #2_, as well as having their video for "Congest" (from
demo #1) shown on Croatia's _Metal Mania_ TV show.
Although demo #1 was straight ahead death metal, the band
progressed towards a more technical and melodic style. In Sipy's
words, "Our music has its phases. If you would listen to _demo #1_
and to the stuff we're doing now, you would see a progression going
on. From that straightforward death metal, we built our own style.
The main thing was the absence of Sasa [Ristic, their former guitar
player. He left for military service]. Then Paolo, who's doing all
the riffs, is always going for something new, he doesn't like to play
the same thing twice, believe me. The keyboard stuff did the thing
also, especially by doubling scales and melodies to the guitar. It
resulted in a more original musical output. I'm not saying that it's
unique but it has its originalities. It's technical, melodic, heavy.
We use many different metal styles and other styles that are not
metal to express ourselves." Paolo concurs, "I'm a very impatient
type of human being, and I really don't like playing always the same
songs, and I neither like to play always the same type of music, and
it is reflected clearly in my music." Personally I would describe
their overall sound as technical, melodic death metal, though the
band resists classification, with Sipy citing the usual objection
that, "Kids seem to listen to a particular style only because of the
trend or something." Paolo is a little more descriptive; "Our music
is a sort of progressive metal, and it is the only way in which I can
Currently, the band is preparing to release their debut album on
the newly formed Baldrick Hell's Kitchen Records run by Jordi "Billu"
Bellaubi, formerly of Abstract Emotions. They are in the process of
recording as I write this, and should be finished by the time you
read it. In the meantime, BHK will rerelease Aeon's _demo #2_ as a
cassette EP under the title _Clean Hands of Eternal Gods_. The
re-released version will feature a new live track, "Portent", but
will be without the keyboard outro "Dissicated". BHK will also be
releasing a home video of the band including covers and studio shots
of the band as well as their video for "Blinded by the Afterlife"
(from demo #2).
Their forthcoming full-length debut album should be a diverse
offering, as the band has continued to move into a more progressive
sound. Paolo mentions that the new album will feature "some old
hippie-groove parts like the old Black Sabbath and Saint Vitus stuff.
Of course there'll be lots of guitar & keyboard solos. I hope you'll
like this one, they'll not be recorded all in half an hour. [Ed.
note: This was my only real complaint with demo #2, see CoC #2], and
I hope that there'll be lots of samples (my new passion) on this
record." Sipy informed me that the sound would be more like Atheist
and Cynic than their previous work. When asked to elaborate, Sipy
explains, "We all listen to both of them and we're all highly
opinionated about them, but our goal isn't to sound like them. We're
going on an original thing. The style will be technical, that's for
sure." Quelling my fears that the band were abandoning the complex,
technical, melodic death metal style of _demo #2_, Paolo assures me,
"There'll be different styles on this record because we'll record two
old songs [one from the first demo] with some enhancements and
modifications, there'll be 4 or 5 semi-old songs, and there'll be a
brand new one which will surely sound different, so I guess it will
not be boring." Sipy adds, "On the album, we'll have songs with so
many different riffs and many of them are technical, melodic death
After the release of the album, Aeon hope to do a month-long
European tour to support it, a prospect that Sipy calls, "Our dream
come true." What does the future hold for them? In Paolo's words, "My
MIDI-Guitar, and a new Aeon, with lots of samples and overlayed
musical styles. I have plans to do some strange crossovers from free
jazz, hippie-groove, pure heavy-metal, some melodic speed-metal and
power-metal like Pantera."
c/o Sipy Bival