Interview with Corners of Sanctuary's Mick Michaels
Corners of Sanctuary is a traditional heavy metal band that hails from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and has three EPs and four full-length albums to it's name. Released in mid December of 2015, "Metal Machine" is the band's most recent album and it comes across as a love letter of sorts to fans of old heavy metal. Just recently I had the chance to sit down and talk with band member Mick Michaels. I want to thank him for the opportunity and I would encourage our readers to check out "Metal Machine" when they have the chance.
Andy (A)-Would you please introduce the members of your band and tells us how you came about?
Mick Michaels (MM)-The band is Frankie Cross (vocals), James Pera (bass & backing vocal), Sean Nelligan (drums & backing vocals), and Mick Michaels (guitar & keyboards). Sean, James and I were working on short term reunion project with the band Seeker back in 2010. Seeker was a band we were in back in the 80’s. During that time, Sean and I discussed starting a new project where the focus would be on our roots. We wanted to write songs that we wanted to hear. Before long we started rehearsing together and about six months later we brought James aboard. Sean was handling lead vocals at the time. However, we realized pretty early on that someone was needed to fill the lead singer position full-time. So Frankie was brought into the fold in 2013.
A-Corners of Sanctuary is an interesting choice for a name. Is there a story behind it?
MM-"Corners of Sanctuary" are places that each of us can to go to get away, where we can be who we really are... free of judgment or ridicule from others. They are places we can just exist where we feel safe and where we can be free. They can be anything or anywhere – real or imaginative. For us, music is a "corner of sanctuary". Our hope is that our music can serve as a "corner of sanctuary" for those who listen.
A-I like that explanation and I feel as if it adds another layer to your band. Might I ask what bands influenced you early on?
MM-Judas Priest, Accept, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Kiss, Savatage... That’s a few but there are so many. We are still being influenced by these bands today. Plus there are current bands that also offer influence as well... like Huntress, Disturbed and Avenge Sevenfold. It is impossible not to be influenced. We embrace our influences and take stock in what they have provided us as a musical blueprint.
A- How much would you say the band has grown between the 2012 EP, "Forgotten Hero", and your latest release?
MM-Musically, the band has definitely defined its focus. We know exactly what we are looking to achieve with the sound and presentation. And because of that, it has offered us a freedom to just create and enjoy the process.
A-Speaking of "Metal Machine", how has the reaction been from fans and critics?
MM-Overall the reception of the new album has been great, especially here in the United States. The record has something that connects with people. Maybe it’s the classic sound and approach that reminds people of another time or place or the way the lyrics are relatable on multiple levels depending on one’s interpretation. Either way, we are happy people are listening. We are very proud of "Metal Machine".
A-You should be! I really like how "Metal Machine" has an old-school hard rock and heavy metal vibe to it. Was that a purposeful choice on the band's part?
MM-Absolutely! This is the style of music that started it all and resonates strongly with us and which influenced a generation. That particular sound is in our blood and feels so natural to us. It’s part of who we are. Keeping the sound alive is our way of paying homage to the music and those who came before us – they both have given us so much.
A-Very cool! Do you have any fave moments on the new album?
MM-We really enjoyed making this album. For me, one of the highlights when making this album was being in the studio when Frankie was laying down his vocal tracks. It was during that time everything just seemed to make sense and pull together. The vision we had for the record was truly taking shape. It was an exciting moment and in the end, it was more than what we could have hoped for.
A-Just by scanning over your tour schedule it sure looks as if you guys keep busy. What does the rest of this year hold in store for your band?
MM-For us, busy is good. We have a Midwest US tour scheduled for May. We are covering five states on this excursion. This summer we will be performing as part of the Metal Eternal Fest Tour. In the fall we are schedule for a West Coast US tour. In between all that we will be releasing a new video for "Tomorrow Never Comes", making a "Best of" compilation available and in several weeks we start working on a new album which we plan to release next year.
A-I'll have to keep an eye out for the new video and then the "Best Of" release. Where can our listeners find out more about your band?
MM-for everyone thing COS, visit our official website at www.cornersofsanctuary.com. You can also join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CornersofSanctuary.
A-Thanks. Last thoughts? I always let bands have the final say.
MM-Thanks so much for giving us this opportunity to share Corners of Sanctuary with your readers. We greatly appreciate the support. We hope to see you at a show! COSnROLL! \m/\m/
A-I'd like that!