Overtures: Uncompromising Italian Heavy Metal
Written by Brett Kihlmire
Brought together by their music teachers for a school-sponsored musical exhibition in Gorizia, Italy, the band that would become Overtures first came together as the cover band in 2003. After years of rocking the stage they realized that Event Horizon was already a band and with a name change to Overtures came a new approach to music – the band was now an original band.
“In 2007 we found ourselves with eight original tracks, and we decided to record them in a demo that had more success than we expected since an Italian label signed us that year,” says lead vocalist Michele Guaitoli. “When we realized that we could really try something more, we had some line-up changes and we started working professionally.”
Moving from covers to all original music came easy for these trained musicians and the sound they came up with was undeniable. Exhibiting a blend of progressive and power metal that they describe simply as “heavy fuckin’ metal’ the band has been working for the last decade to make a name for themselves. To accomplish this aim Guaitoli says the band follows a list of core goals: “to always keep melodies and emotions in the first raw (our power metal side). To always look for details in the arrangements, with the goal of giving always a new element to the listener while going through the song, being simple but not obvious (our prog metal side). To be direct and strong in the riffing. To ‘keep it true’ (our heavy metal side)!”
Greatly influenced by bands and musicians from across the spectrum such as Devin Townsend, Queen, Gotthard, System of a Down, Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder, the band is known for their varied heavy metal style that can be heard on four full length albums released between 2008 and 2016.
“Of course, we love Iron Maiden (is there really somebody on earth who does not?) and Avantasia, but we appreciate classical music too. The main goal of a complete musician is to keep his mind open, but of course this is just my personal opinion,” adds Guaitoli.
Though the band has been going strong since formation of their original incarnation, the band has always struggled with finding a stable lineup.
“Our situation is, as for many other bands, a moment when you have to work 200% professionally, but without a big name we have to earn it yet, and to do this you must give the best you can. Sometimes this is a burden, ‘cause you always have to find enough time for rehearsing, travelling, promoting,” says Guaitoli. “During this journey, not everyone can stand it. We have changed a drummer and four guitar players, but this is a story that every band can tell before finding a stable situation. You really have to believe in this passion called music!”
Despite suffering the loss of five members in their history, the band has seen a great deal of success. Not only have they unleashed four well-received albums, they have shared the stage with Rammstein, Korn, Gamma Ray, Megadeth, Primal Fear, Powerwolf, Stratovarius, Halestorm, Rhapsody, Iron Savior, Saxon, Threshold, Almah and Secret Sphere. In addition to that, the band has had had four European tours with their latest co-headlining with fellow Italians, Temperance.
“Considering our age and our actual situation, we can look back with a good feeling, but we still have so much work to be done,” says Guaitoli with pride and determination.
With their latest album, Artifacts, releasing in May 2016, the band isn’t yet focused on a new album. Rather, they’re putting their energies into promotions and rocking venues with their powerful sound. Of course, there’s talk that a new album might be appearing in 2018, but we’ll have to just wait and see for the time being.
Known for playing small venues as well as the festival stages, Overtures is a sight to see. The band’s raw energy translates from album to stage without compromise earning them quite the reputation.
“In Italy Overtures are known for their respect for live music. We care a lot about the live experience we offer. We’re always working to improve our performances in terms of skills and emotions, and since the last year we’re also bringing on stage two backing vocalists: Nicoletta Rosellini from Kalidia and Alessia Scolletti, that are sometimes “switched “with Jade Hirudo from Ashes you Leave and Caterina Piccolo to keep LIVE also the backing vocals that our songs are plenty of,” Guaitoli says proudly. “On YouTube you can find some videos we have recently released with this line-up. It can clearly show the impact of our live shows.”
As of right now Overtures is a quickly becoming a European staple, but they’re dreaming big and hope to one day cross the ocean and the continents. Their biggest goals are to tour Japan, the United States, and South America. Considering their dedication and growing fanbase worldwide, it’s not a matter of if but when Overtures will be able to take their show to the world stage. However, for the time being, European fans will have Overtures all to themselves, so keep an eye out for their summer dates, especially Metal Days in Tolmin, which is set to feature Opeth, Among Amarth and many more great acts.