DARK SECRET: interview with Calogero Piscopo


organized by Dark Secret and gryphonmetal.ch

e-mail interview  by Sara "Shadow_Lady" De Vita ___             

27/04/2004                                                                                                                                                review Evil and Passion




That one with the Dark Secret has been indeed a pleasant and nice talkin'. An Italian band with very clear ideas, acquiring visibility in the background of  Death Metal.


Sara: Hi Calogero…so, tell us about Dark Secret…

Calogero: Dark Secret are born out of my will in January 1999. After any experiences in several metal bands I decided to create a band in which I could express my whole person and my creativity at 100%... I was sided by very good musicians/friends and together we recorded after some months the demo tape “The Hand Of Destiny” that, after some gigs around, brought us a contract with Videoradio that published our debut album “The Frozen Memories”. After too many line-up changes and many a concert last July we published “Evil And Passion”, second full-length and casket of our new dreams…


What is the greatest drive pushing you guys to to face a musical experience, especially in this genre.

In my opinion Death Metal is the only genre allowing me to fully express myself with satisfaction. When I started, I knew very well what I’d face… shut doors everywhere and so on…  but the greatest drive, in this specific case, comes from the music itself! Death will never be a “mainstream”… and so if you play this music you are not doing it for the sales and so on… you simply do it because you have something to tell, something that only those few that will listen could really “feel”… so that all this becomes of enormous value exactly because very few will share your thoughts!!!

In almost 5 years of life of Dark Secret you have often changed the line up, how much this “movement” of musician (and I surmise of ideas as well) weighed in your work?

True enough we have had so many line up changes… maybe TOO many… but honestly I can tell that this “come and go” of persons never bore too much on our work. Until now I’ve always been the songwriter in the band, and even during the changes I’ve always gone on composing… so from a strictly musical point of view ideas have been coherent. But when you change musicians so often brings problems when it happens just before a gig or a recording session… you enter in a sort of rehearsing-frenzy, but we are still going on well!!! And then… ehm… since the album has been published, that is since July, we have changed line up two more times!!! Ehehe… we are 3 now because two months ago the bass player and the vocalist split up from us!!! Now we have Andrea Sciamone on bass, and, as vocalist… ehm… me!!!! We already played a gig with this lineup in Reggio Calabria on March 27th, and all went well so we hope this change is the ultimate!!!


“Evil and Passion”… a complex album, unravelling lethal sonorities…  would you like to present your work? (a sort of mini-review of the album)

Evil And Passion has been arranged and composed in a long period… during which the songs assumed a complex shape exactly because we spent so much time arranging them. It is a sort of different album respect to the previous one… the songs are more articulated yet more immediate… let’s say that they are characterized by a cured easiness ahahaha! The songs from the precious album were efficacious but somehow “simple”, here instead… well… you just push “play” and without too many ornamentations you quite immediately hear the strength and homogeneity of the work… and yet what else could I say… I wrote all the songs… I am sort of supporting myself!! ahahah

From what is your music inspired?

What we are inspired from? Well… negative things that daily happen (or or may happen) in a man lifetime. Death… either suffering or giving it… We always wrote lyrics about man and his infinitive worries. Our lyrics are no more than narrations, Stories in which we describe mental states that are only solved by a deep and strong acknowledgement of one’s will and position!!! I never use lyrics too strong or crude, I prefer to let other interpret what they are listening… it would be stupid to force someone to feel what you feel.

Let’s move now to the musical world beyond the Alps: Dark Tranquillity and In Flames are the two  of the most representative Melodic Death bands… what do you think about them?

Well, what should I say… you just named two of my all-time favourites! Melodic Death is my greatest musical passion, even though recently both have moved a bit too far from “Death Metal”. Dark Tranquillity from having done a masterpiece as “The Gallery” have then moved towards a road I don’t like at all… as a matter of fact since “Projector” came out I don’t follow them anymore… now they’re too dark and pseudotechnological, they’ve lost all the charme they had in the beginning. I know you are a fan of them as well, so could you remember “Skydancer” or the splendid “The Mind’s I”? Those are Dark Tranquillity in my opinion. In Flames instead have evolved “step by step” and so they undergone a less sudden change. I keep buying their CD and all are exceptional!


Live situation?

In this period we’re working on the follow up to the tour of Evil And Passion. Since the publication of this work we’re playing well… the reason why this interview suffered a 2-months delay has been because we were playing live a lot! We’re in pause now, and we’ll start in May with other dates of which one will be in Malta and on the 19th June Scordia with DISMEMBER!!!

I think you’ve noted that in the non-metal musical world, there has been a sort of reversal (by no mean total) towards alternative and rock sonorities… do you have your opinion about this?

Yes, I completely agree with you. For now on commercial televisions such as MTV more often now you can see videos from Linkin Park, Limp Bizkit, The Rasmus… and the same for the radio… since this thing started I noticed that at metal concerts (be them ours or other’s…) there is a variety of people… a minority, be it clear, but it seems that since the people is listening to more rock sonorities they almost are welcoming a metal approach… there is also a sort of strange benevolence from the owners of live clubs… as a matter of fact this year we are playing more gigs and finding less difficulties. Look, if this phenomenon may be useful to widen the views of other persons, be it welcome!

"The Hand Of Destiny"… "Evil and Passion", what is evolved in your style… and what remained unchanged, going to shape what are (and will be) the standards of your future works?

Our style is basically unchanged, melody and brutality joint together… or at least these are our intentions ahahaha! I was telling you before that our songs are more articulated and mature and since we have just one guitar my approach to composition has changed, since I have to conceive the songs keeping in mind just one guitar so that there won’t be too much void playing live. In the future I don’t know what I will invent since now I’m also the singer… and I assure you, singing and playing these songs is not easy at all !!!!


This summer, as soon as the university will let me go a bit, we will dedicate to the composition and arrangement of new songs. Meanwhile we keep playing live until next fall. By the way, we are looking for a new contract!

OK boys… “the Tower question”… the Game that we ask to every band we  interview for the first time… Let’s go: on a  very high tower you find Soilwork, In Flames and Dark Tranquillity…who will you kicking down, letting live just one?

First I’ll throw Dark Tranquillity for the reasons I told you before… their stylistically change I’ve never suffered… but first I’d ask them the money I paid for their last 3 albums ahahaha!!! Then it’s the turn of Soilwork… I’m sorry, they’re very good but I have only one album from them, “Natural Born Chaos”... I will save  In Flames! I’ve always followed them… they’ve changed my life… and then if only they remain then we will be the second best, isn’t it?

I close this pleasant interview wishing you much luck and a propitiatory “in bocca al lupo”. 

Thanks to you Sara, it’s always pleasant to talk about music with a girl! Thanks to Gryphon Metal.ch  staff as well and I invite those who don’t know us to visit our official website www.darksecret.it !



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