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Quartz

Fear No Evil is the long-waited and great come-back album of the Quartz, after 33 years. Mick Hopkins, lead guitarist and founder member of the band, tell us the news.

1) What does it mean to come back in 2016 musical scene for you?

It really means a hell of a lot to us at this stage of our careers. We’ve always loved recording and playing live and still get the same buzz today as we did back in the 70’s and 80’s. Everything that happens now and in the future is seen as a bonus really.

2) Can you tell us the making of Fear No Evil album?

We recorded the whole album ourselves at David Garner’s home studio. Mixing and post production took place at Yellow Bean Studios in Leicester by David’s good friend Jez Burns. We are really pleased with what we have managed to accomplish in terms of style and sound of this new album.

3) What do you remember about the English hard rock era in the late Seventies-early Eighties and peculiarly about the NWOBHM movement?

There were lots and lots of places to play back then in England and abroad. We had a lot of fun on tour, especially supporting our good friends Black Sabbath, plus playing with all the other bands like Rush, UFO, AC/DC and Gillan for example. Followingthe implosion of the short lived Punk Rock movement many new young bands emerged who were prepared to simply pick up an instrument and just have a go. Some of these bands were dubbed with the title of NWOBHM because of the style and sound of their music. As we had recently changed our name to QUARTZ ahead of the release of our debut album in 1977 people assumed that we were new and either rightly or wrongly put us in that category and it stuck.

4) Many journalists and rock historians did a definition of the Quartz sound as a mix between Black Sabbath and Deep Purple; what is your opinion?

We didn’t realise that people thought that but I suppose having had your first album produced by Tony Iommi and having toured with Black Sabbath then I suppose a certain amount of their influence and technique rubs off? Obviously, now that Geoff (Nicholls) has returned to the band after spending nearly twenty five years as the unofficial fifth member of Black Sabbath then those sorts of comparisons will inevitably be drawn because of his influence on and input into both of those bands.

5) The more classic hard and heavy is really reborn today, with return of giants of the past and new groups…

It’s great that some of the original NWOBHM groups are getting back together again and taking their music to a new generation. We see a lot of younger fans at our gigs and they are right down the front singing along to all our songs which is very rewarding for us to see and hear.

6) Which band do you listen to lately?

Currently I am listening to and following aband from Walsall (that’s where Judas Priest are from) called “Stone Broken” who I think are going to be big.Please go and check them out.

7) What are your future plans?

We are actually in the process of recording a follow up album to “Fear No Evil”. We are currently about half way through and progress is good although we have had some setbacks recently. Fingers crossed you and our fans won’t have to wait another thirty three years for the next album to be released? We are hoping to come to Italy soon to play some of our new songs and all the classics too in front of an enthusiastic audience somewhere!

(edited by Davide Arecco)