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Interviews : “Fleshgod Apocalypse show is meant to be a full experience” – An Interview with Tommaso Riccardi (Fleshgod Apocalypse)

By on May 19, 2017

Fleshgod Apocalypse – Tommaso Riccardi

The bombastic Italian symphonic extreme metal juggernaut Fleshgod Apocalypse is on its way back to Australia again, but for those in this country still uninitiated with the explosive live aura that this band creates, lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist has a few hints as to what to expect. It is a visceral, emotional and intellectual experience all at once.

“You simply have to think that Fleshgod Apocalypse show is meant to be a full experience and not just people playing music,” describes vocalist and guitarist Tommaso Riccardi, “the visual and the musical aspect are one thing and impossible to be split. Also, I truly believe that energy is what makes things different. And that is something that can only come from the heart.”

However, four albums into their career, Riccardi is just a little tight-lipped about what their setlist will consist of on this Aussie jaunt. “That could be a surprise you know?” He teases, “let’s put it like this: maybe!”

The last Fleshgod album, King, has been out for more than a year now, and is another seismic slab of orchestral extremity that has received almost universal acclaim since its unleashing in early 2016. “Yeah, when we released King we had a good feeling about it, after working so hard on it. But we didn’t expect something like this. We’ve had a crazy response both from press and fans and we couldn’t ask more.”

He still has the same positive attitude towards the album, even though they have been touring and playing it relentlessly for well over a year. “Well, it is good to realise that even if we played the songs thousands of times it still feels so good to perform,” Riccardi enthuses, “that means that you like what you do and that is the best fuel for a show to be killer!”

While King has been a massive success, creatively, commercially and in a live setting, the band are not resting on their laurels. They have already started the long and involved process of creating the next magnificent Fleshgod opus.

“Well, let’s say we got some ideas on the way and starting thinking about the future!”

Riccardi states that it is always tough to try to ‘top’ previous efforts when they start working on a new album, rather they prefer to focus more on the general, ongoing improvement of their sound, technique and songcraft and of themselves as individual musicians.

“Well, challenge is a part of music and definitely part of what Fleshgod Apocalypse does, you can bet on that.” He states confidently, “I like to think that the secret is finding the right balance between the ‘I don’t give a shit, I just do what I like’ and the attempt to always improve and make better things.

“One thing that surely helps on this, is the fact that we are not afraid of experimenting. That, for sure, is something we will always do, so expect the unexpected.”

He is a little surprised to think that his band has been at this for a decade now. “Absolutely not,” he emphasises, when asked if it feels like 10 years has passed since their formation, “these years have flown by at the speed of light. But in the meantime, we have done so many things that it could have been a thousand years. It’s such a strange feeling!”

Riccardi tells us that they are not a band to sit down and make big longer term plans and set goals for themselves, preferring to take things as they come and live in the now.

“I don’t know man… I guess we’ll keep doing what we do the best we can and try to keep pushing it to the top,” he says, “other than that, just living things in the present tense.”

Catch Fleshgod Apocalypse on their upcoming Australian tour.

Fleshgod Apocalypse 2017 Australian Tour:
Tuesday, May 30: Kings Arms, Auckland
Wednesday, May 31: Valhalla, Wellington
Thursday, June 1: Crowbar, Brisbane
Friday, June 2: Oxford Arts Factory, Sydney
Saturday, June 3: Max Watts, Melbourne

Tickets from Direct Touring:


Rod Whitfield is a Melbourne-based writer and retired musician who has been writing about music since 1995. He has worked for Team Rock, Beat Magazine,, Heavy Mag, Mixdown, The Metal Forge, Metal Obsession and many others. He has written and published his memoirs of his life and times in the music biz, and also writes books, screenplays, short stories, blogs and more.