Using your surname as the name for your band can be a very good idea. Lots of bands have done it in the past, with success. But what if the name you use isn’t your real name? In the case of Polish melodic death metal band MOYRA this is true, as lead singer Margo Moyra’s real name is Małgorzata Szkoda-Hreczuch. Then let’s take a different approach. MOYRA have just released their debut album “Omen” through darkTUNES Music Group. A nice starting point for an interview with the platinum blonde Margo. Ready! Aim And Fire!
INTERVIEW BY: HENK VAN NIEUWENHOVEN
SIEMA, MARGO (HELLO, MARGO). IN THE INTRODUCTION OF THIS INTERVIEW I AM REFERRING TO YOUR LAST NAME THAT YOU USE FOR THE BANDNAME. HOWEVER, MOYRA IS NOT YOUR REAL SURNAME, WHERE DOES IT COME FROM?
Hello, no it’s not my real surname, that’s my artist pseudonym that’s stuck with me. And for sure it’s more memorable than my double last name. Second thing is that my fans from abroad can more easily read it than Małgorzata Szkoda-Hreczuch. 😊 That’s my full name and surname.
MOYRA STARTED IN 2017, IT’S NOW 2023 AND EXCEPT FOR TWO EPS AND A WHOLE BUNCH OF SINGLES YOU HAVE NEVER RELEASED A FULL-LENGTH ALBUM… UNTIL NOW! WHY DID IT TAKE YOU SO LONG?
Beginnings can be hard. Often significant financial outlays are necessary to move on. So, it was reasonable to start slowly with little steps and successively get to know fans around the world and when the band name and the activity were strongly founded it was time for a full album releasing. Sometimes something must mature to taste right, it’s better for the band than to jump into deep water. We appreciate the current situation. Today we enjoy more interest from fans who stayed with us. The album is more attractive for them right now than it could have been in the first years of the band’s activity. It was a conscious decision.
IN THE LINE-UP OF MOYRA WE SEE A LOT OF CHANGES. GUITARISTS, BASSISTS AND DRUMMERS CAME, PLAYED AND WENT OVER THE YEARS. HOW LONG HAS THE CURRENT LINE-UP BEEN TOGETHER?
We have been playing with the current line-up for 3 years. Before, when I was looking for musicians, I didn’t realize that working with musicians is so hard. After a few months there was no involvement, many rehearsals and nothing went further. So a radical and conscious decision was to look for the best of the best regarding skills and involvement. People that are on the same wavelength, so right now the line-up is established. Everybody always dreamed about creating the right atmosphere inside the band, so that everyone enjoys playing, can mature and get better, more professional and understand living in this industry. Without these important things no band can exist very long. And as time shows, a lot of bands quickly in the beginning they just fall apart. I was consistent and it wasn’t easy, but life pushed me to act and it didn’t let me resign. I’ve always believed and faith made it possible. I’m very pleased and grateful for every day we’ve been together in this line-up.
MOYRA’S DEBUT ALBUM “OMEN” WAS RELEASED ON MARCH 3RD THROUGH THE GERMAN DARKTUNES LABEL WHO HAVE A LOT OF FEMALE FRONTED BANDS ON THEIR ROSTER (DUST IN MIND, FALLCIE). WHEN DID YOU GET IN TOUCH WITH THEM AND HOW DID THE NEGOTIATIONS GO?
Yes, it’s true. I found the label thanks to the bands you’ve mentioned. I just dreamed it. I did not write to many labels. I focused on doing the job the best I could to get to the label with the best possible product and the most professional setting. Once again, my faith, sense and intuition pushed me there and nothing is a coincidence, it was meant to be. First contact took place about one year before the album release. Negotiation, project and then everything you could see in our performance. We’re very pleased with the cooperation. The label is also pleased with us and our attitude.
It’s like everything that happens in my life is not a coincidence and I understood that’s my destiny, a path written for me. I surrendered to this and I flow with it, with everything that fate brings me in the music sphere.“
– MARGO MOYRA –
THE COVER ART FOR “OMEN” WAS MADE BY PIOTR SZAFRANIEC WHO WORKED OUT THE IDEA THAT YOU GAVE HIM. WE SEE THREE WITCHES (OR PRECOGS), SWORDS AND FLAMES. WHERE ARE THEY, WHAT ARE THEY DOING THERE AND WHAT IS THE OMEN?
Yes, Peter was the executor of my vision. The cover art shows three goddess – Moirai – daughters of Zeus (it’s a Greek name) but my Moirai are presented my way. A symbol of femininity, woman’s strength, mother, guardian, destiny, fate. It’s like everything that happens in my life is not a coincidence and I understood that’s my destiny, a path written for me. I surrendered to this and I flow with it, with everything that fate brings me in the music sphere. The band’s name perfectly reflects this situation, but Moirai, on the other hand, are just good beings. On the cover they herald a good OMEN, clean the Earth from dirt that was created in this world. These days are full of chaos, negativity, arrogance, pride, greed, cynicism, envy… It doesn’t give the possibility of human development, doesn’t give the possibility of growing to a higher level of consciousness. People prepare such a fate for themselves, they are sad, disappointed, they have huge emotional problems by chasing something that is not written for them. They feel frustration, isolate themselves.Now we only build blocks of flats to have it, we don’t live to be. There is no joy that our ancestors had when they were joined with nature. They had this inner peace and connection with the spirits of the world, of nature. Moirai from the cover restore this order, they cleanse the world from the ashes so that it can be born again, in a better version.
IN YOUR LATEST VIDEO FOR “UNLEASHED SPIRITS”, WITH BEAUTIFUL FOOTAGE OF A WOLF AND A BIRD OF PREY, THERE’S ONLY YOU AND GUITARIST DAMIAN PASHCZK. WHY? WHAT IS THE SONG ABOUT?
It was a conscious decision, considered with the whole band. Because we’re the main composers, we’ve decided to do a minimalistic, no-frills video, based on that kind of allegory. We refer to the content of connecting with the spirits of nature, in this case I am a reflection the spirit of the wolf (wildness, family attachment, strength, perseverance, dealing with any difficult situation and survival in this difficult world). Damian in this case is a bird of prey, it’s a symbol of fighting for survive, it teaches us to not escape from our problems, face them and fight for ourselves and our good. It shows that every fight makes us stronger and helps you get to know ourselves better.
SPEAKING OF DAMIAN, EVERY SONG ON THE ALBUM SEEM TO STEM FROM HIS GUITAR RIFF AND HIS SOLOS ARE VERY DOMINANT. HE’S THE MAIN SONGWRITER? WHAT ABOUT THE LYRICS, WHO WROTE THOSE?
Yes, Damian does the instrumental compositions. That was the premise, that his part is to bring the track and because his style mostly corresponds to mine, we’ve done this kind of division. Damian composes the instruments and I do the lyrics and vocal parts. Damian helps me also with English translations.
“OMEN” CONTAINS TWELVE TRACKS INCLUDING THE LADY GAGA COVER “PERFECT ILLUSION”. WAS IT A LONG-CHERISHED WISH OF YOU TO DO THIS COVER, AS IT IS SEEMS RATHER UNUSUAL FOR A MELODIC DEATH METAL BAND?
For sure it’s not a standard 😉, but do we always have to follow a general pattern? I like to push boundaries. Generally, the history of this track is that it was made for some American label for a compilation, but unfortunately it didn’t work out. The song stayed and we decided to release it both on video and on the album. And we’re happy with that. 😊
FOR ME, “READY! AIM AND FIRE!” IS THE OUTSTANDING TRACK ON “OMEN”. DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE ONE?
Yes, this song has been recorded and sung again, this time in a more mature version which took it to a higher level. It’s a very good track, many of our fans choose that track and “The Eyes Of Rats”, which is one of my favorites, and “End Of The World” as well. 😊
NOW THAT “OMEN” IS OUT YOU WILL BE VERY BUSY DOING LIVE CONCERTS. THE BLOOD PACT 2023 TOUR IN MARCH AND APRIL, VALKYRIE VOICES WITH AS NIGHT FALLS ON APRIL 22ND AND PROBABLY SOME MORE. DO YOU EVEN HAVE TIME TO PRESENT THE NEW ALBUM LIVE TO THE REST OF EUROPE?
I would love to go to wider waters beyond our country, but it’s not so simple. It requires having contacts, knowing the market, people who can help us promote the events in a given city of a given country. We’re thinking about visiting our Czech friends more often, where as we realized, we have more and more fans. At the last show there we were very surprised that so many people came to our show. After this, we would like to play in a few cities in Germany and then we’ll see. We have a plan for the UK in 2024, if nothing changes. Right now, we’re busy with the tour here in Poland, quite a lot is happening.