Breaking onto the British classic rock and heavy metal scene, Lords of Black hit ten British towns and cities as part of their Merciless over Europe tour recently.
The band made headlines in the spring of 2016 when the legendary Ritchie Blackmore announced the new lead singer for his Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow comeback to Rock was Lords of Black front man, Ronnie Romero.
Catching up with the band midway through their tour, RUSHONROCK chatted to Tony Hernando about how the tour was going, and what they thought of England so far.
RUSHONROCK – You’ve been busy touring – Japan, Europe and now England. How has it all gone so far? Any highlights?
Tony Hernando: Yeah, we’ve been pretty busy lately first with a great european tour as special guest act for Axel Rudi Pell, then playing some high profile Festivals like Loud Park Japan and Frontiers Metal Festival in Milan, now headlining for the first time in Europe in this three weeks tour – including our very first time in England, which is great. We love all places we play in and audiences are great everywhere, but sure, Japan was beyond our expectations. Such a great Festival, great bill, great experience.
RUSHONROCK – What do you think of England, and its music scene?
TH: Well, when it comes to speak about Rock History, this is the place man! We really like to think we are playing on…like sacred ground, you know? Many of our fave bands and influences came out from here, like Purple, Rainbow, Maiden, Sabbath, you name it! You’re in London about to play and you can’t help for a moment to think about it. Or you’re in Birmingham and think about the whole ‘Heavy Metal birthplace‘ – Black Country stuff, so it’s really cool.
RUSHONROCK – You’ve produced two great albums, do you collaborate when writing songs? Do you all have some input?
TH: Yes, it’s pretty much a collaboration effort. It may depend on how many ideas any of us are putting out – in the first album I co-wrote many of the songs with Ronnie and Andy, but for some reason, for the second album I was more productive or more driven maybe, and at that moment it ended up with mostly songs I had writen myself.
RUSHONROCK – Where do you get your inspiration for your songs?
TH: You never know, it comes from everywhere. Maybe just a concept or a title or a phrase that resonates inside you and guides you throughout the whole writing process of a song. Lyrically, if you pay attention you could even say we have a lot of ‘love songs’ but never in a cheesy way! I mean, I love the love-hate duallism and pretty much you can say everything that moves us, that moves the world is because of our human nature. And there you have the most powerful and unique side we humans have…love – or the lack of it.
Some other numbers may be more epic or classic Heavy Rock stuff. I think we cover a lot of ground lyrically and also musically, with just some bits of proggy, power or just Classic Metal but with our very distinctive twist to it, due to Ronnie’s voice and my melodic approach to my writing and playin’.
RUSHONROCK – Fantastic that Ronnie is the new lead singer for Rainbow. How did he, and the band take that news?
TH: Well, it definitely has been a game changer, since Ritchie Blackmore announcing Ronnie Romero as the new singer for Rainbow put all the eyes over him and over us! It’s been so great and we were huge fans of the “Man in Black” anyway, so it couldn’t be better.
RUSHONROCK – What is the next move for the band.
TH: We’ll be writing and recording new stuff in the next few months, so I hope we have the follow up album before next year comes to an end. Sure we’ll have some more gigs and summer festivals, but I don’t think a another long tour as such. Also Ronnie will be doing a bunch of Rainbow shows in June, which is great.
Photo credit: Rob Tysall.