It’s really amazing how music takes us to another place. You might feeling exhausted from the world as it is, from the work pressure, the daily problems, and the situation with COVID-19 in the world. However, music always manages to take your mind away from all this reality and into a better place. And almost any kind of music can do that. If any music can drive our minds into other worlds, how much more if this music is about other worlds!
Today we have Erika Ferraris, vocalist of Italian Fantasy Metal band, Holy Shire. The band’s music is known to be about fantasy themes and storytelling concept. They have released two studio albums to this day, first being ‘Midgard’ in 2014 and then ‘The Legendary Shepherds of the Forest’ in 2018.
We asked Erika about their future plans as a band, her opinion on some issues, and we played a fun imagination game (as we always do). We hope you enjoy this interview with Aeon of Holy Shire.
Hello Erika. It’s wonderful to chat with you. How are you and the other members of Holy Shire doing during these times?
Thank you, my pleasure, we’re fine thanks. We restarted rehearsing in mid June after three months of lockdown. It was surreal and tough staying away from our music for such a long time, but fortunately now it’s gone. (crossing fingers). In a few weeks we’ll be back live, in Milan, after one year stop. We’re very happy to meet our friends supporting us.
You’re a Power Metal band from Milan. For our readers who haven’t yet get to listen to your music, how would you describe your sound?
We like to say our genre is fantasy metal, melodic, power, symphonic, folk and epic metal with lyrics inspired by the fantasy world, starting from Tolkien which we try to honor with our name and at the moment with 4 songs in our first two albums and 2 in the upcoming work, but also touching mythology and history. We try to create a HOLY SHiRE’s sound by mixing many music influences from our members, who listen to very different kind of music, from classic music to nu metal, and we also love hard rock from the seventies and classic heavy metal. We all contribute to music composition so we like to vary and experiment.
You’ve released two full length albums so far, in 2014 and 2018. Are you planning for another major release any time soon?
Yes we started working to new songs in 2019, we stopped our work together during the lockdown, but now we’re very happy and excited to be back to work and we have now about six new tracks that are progressively taking shape.
You’ve been in the music scene for more than a decade. What would you say has changed in the Metal scene during this time?
In Italy metal is definitively an underground scene, with the exception of a few mainstream Italian bands, and foreign metal superbands, so it was difficult ten years ago and it still is, online music in general is deeply transforming the music industry so being underground is even tougher, but new technologies still give the opportunity to express ourselves and to virtually reach a very big audience. Being underground means to have limited resources so we need to plan our activity to optimize the results and try to reach other country where our genre could be more appreciated.
Since your music is about a fantasy world and we at FemMetal love playing games, how about we play a game to make things more interesting? This game is called ‘In a World’. I’ll ask you to imagine yourself in an alternative reality and see how you’d react in certain scenarios. Ready?
In a world where you’re the lead singer in a Jazz band, what would the name of the band be?
Holy Club, maybe 😉
In a world where magical and mythological creatures exist, what creature would you like to have as a pet?
Definitively a Dragon and an Unicorn
In a world where people get to choose one superpower, what would your superpower be?
Universal healing power
In a world where time travel exists, what era would you go to most?
Only if I had healing power (easy uh?), I’d like to visit the Middle Ages, and live in a castle, as a musician, of course
In a world where you’re a hobbit called Frodo Baggins that has to take a ring to Mordor to toss it into the cracks of Mount Doom, who would your Samwise Gamgee be?
Kima, my flutist, she is unshakably optimistic and would handle the lembas at best (or eat them all in few days ahahaha)
hahaha! Finally, in a world where you’re the supreme ruler, what interesting law would you create?
I would make the life of animals sacred and untouchable, and I would protect Nature and the forests
Thank you for playing! Have you ever been treated with sexism? How would you face sexism and what advice would you give to young people who have to deal with discrimination on daily basis?
In a slightly way yes, there are still stereotypes to break down, and a patriarchal mentality to change, but personally I love to give the image of a strong woman, who sings and hits the stage in its own way, I like to be aggressive, a sort of witch and warrior, and I believe everybody has the right to express their personality freely. I believe to stop sexism women need to be supportive and to have the bravery to express themselves even using sex, but in their own way, with self awareness and trying to avoid the old cultural schemes. But first of all I think sisterhood is the basis.
That’s great. Thank you for the interview Erika!
It has been a pleasure! Thank you! I loved the game and the interesting questions 😉