Peter Ellis is a man on a heavy metal mission to bring the fans a band that they can be proud of. I think that he has most definitely succeeded. Formed in East London amongst a group of already known friends, Peter Ellis, Dan Panza, Ben Lundy, Arn Rogan and Dave Rimmer got together and they formed Monument. A super group, of musicians that have, or are playing in bands such as Zodiac Mind Warp, Cavalar, Achilla, White Wizzard, King Lizard and Ace Mafia.
Their experience in the industry is vast, so they are more than equipped to bring a new lease of life to the British heavy metal music scene. Monument hosted a showcase at the Crobar in Soho in June 2011 to a full venue filled with fans hungry for fresh metal and monument did not fail to deliver. Monument, after their showcase at the Crobar left the crowd hungry and wanting more. Thankfully they are hitting the Relentless Garage in Islington this Sunday for an event that promises to be "monumental" excuse the pun!. On September the 4th, the guys will be presenting their EP in its entirety and once again unleashing their truly heavy metal upon us. Trust me when I tell you this is not a gig to be missed!
I’m very pleased to say that Pete has taken the time to do the Rock Blog 5 for me, and offer us an insight into where his incredible drive for music came from.
1) When did you first know you wanted to be a musician? How old were you?
My mother used to be a professional singer so I grew up around musicians. I knew I had a musical talent since I was 3-4, it was pretty obvious. It was a great thing that I was around people that could spot that when I was very young and guide me towards musical studies from a young age.
2) Who are your major influences? Is there any one unusual that people that listen to your music wouldn't expect?
As far as singers go my biggest influences include people like Ronnie James Dio, Bruce Dickinson, Ian Gillan, Rob Halford, and Geoff Tate amongst others. Now, artists I admire include Michael Jackson, Sting, Bob Marley, and Jessie J, who I think is one of the best if not THE best vocalists of our generation and Ellie Goulding among others. Anything that has good singing in it basically... I am really into good pop music; I think you can learn a lot about song-writing by listening to good pop...
3) What are the biggest personal struggles you have encountered as an artist? How did you overcome them?
It's INSANELY hard to do this nowadays if you are not wealthy or have wealthy parents. People don’t realise just how much it takes. It's been an on-going struggle for the past 7 years for me to continue to do this. You have to believe in yourself, be tough and mentally strong to be able overcome these obstacles. In the end all you can do is say "ok, this is the reality of it, I am not rich so I can't buy my way into success like a lot of bands do, but I believe in myself and I won't give up without giving it 100% for as long as I can".
4) When you write a song is there a particular process you follow or is it different every time?
I always come up with the music first and then I add the lyrics to it. I write everything on my guitar. The usual process is, when I feel inspired I'll pick up my guitar and I'll be strumming away until I play something that sounds special to me and then I build a song around that, it might be a chorus that comes to me first or a verse or a pre-chorus, ideas don't come in order to me (laughs).
5) What is your top 5 bands that you would love to tour with & why?
Iron Maiden, because it's Iron Maiden! Secondly, it is Judas Priest because, well, it’s Judas Priest and also my friend Richie Faulkner is their new guitarist (he is also making a guest appearance in Monument's upcoming E.P) besides, we would have a good laugh on the road, and I’m sure. Thirdly I would choose Saxon, because I have been a big fan since I was a kid. Next would be Bullet for My Valentine. So we can present our modern take on classic British Metal to a younger audience and lastly it has to be Black Sabbath, as it's the band that started it all.
So if you want to witness the start of a new metal era get down to the Relentless Garage in Islington this Sunday and don't miss the guys at their finest, they are supporting the mighty metalworks and will be around all night so don't forget to go and say hello.
If you want to get updates for any new gigs and news then please go and check Monument out on their facebook page http://www.facebook.com/#!/monumentuk?sk=app_2405167945 or their websites www.reverbnation.com/planetmonument & www.myspace.com/planetmonument.
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I hope that you are all havin' a fantastic friday!
Chelle Xxx \m/ xxX
© Michelle Nevill 2011