The brackets next to Bob Katsionis’ name, can tell a rather interesting story of a restless musician who has no boundaries; From his early days playing dark metal with NIGHTFALL, black metal with SEPTIC FLESH, to the glitter-covered AOR heroes OUTLOUD, the German power-metallers SERIOUS BLACK, his 15 years alongside Gus G. in FIREWIND, as a guest songwriter in KAMELOT, his recent work in the underground sensation of WARRIOR PATH and of course 6 instrumental solo albums in between, Bob has always been a highly productive force in the arsenal of rising Greek Heavy Metal scene.
STRAY GODS is his new endeavor, heavily inspired by his love for Iron Maiden, and their debut album is ready to storm your speakers!
In his own words:
“The beginning of 2020 found me “band-less” for the first time since I ever started playing the guitar, back in 1992. This was an extraordinary feeling as I felt that I didn’t have to make music for a specific band or project; instead, I could just write whatever I felt like I wanted to write.
During the first months of the pandemic, I released a 16-bit video game fictional soundtrack, built my new studio, and worked on the new album of Warrior Path. There was finally so much time in my hands and so much inspiration. During the “Great Second Global Lockdown” on December 2020, I just got my Fender guitar, plugged it on my Marshall, and started writing some songs in an Iron Maiden style, just for the fun of it. One week later, there was enough material for a full album. Then I realized that this had to become something more significant and that I needed to find other mega-Iron Maiden fans to creatively input on this project.
The first choice was Thanos Pappas, the drummer of Scar Of The Sun, who also runs URIZEN, Greece’s first and only Bruce Dickinson Tribute Band!
Then another obvious choice was bassist Gus Macricostas who now lives in the UK and plays in the solo band of Biff Byford. We played together back in 2002 in Casus Belli, and I always knew how big a fan of Steve Harris was.
As for the vocals, that was a bit harder. The obvious choice was some Youtube Bruce Dickinson-soundalikes, but I needed something more professional. Then came my friend Dan Baune, guitarist of UK-based band MONUMENT who -apart from playing some guest solos in the album- suggested Artur Almeida of Portuguese NWOBHM-style band, Attick Demons. He was a total pro and a great person as well. I’m more than happy with the result and can’t wait until you guys hear what we have to offer!
I’ve been an Iron Maiden and Heavy Metal fan since one evening of 1988 when I watched “Can I Play With Madness” on MTV. This album is a big “Thank You” to this band who influenced my future and course of life, and also one of the most sincere music releases I have ever done.”
The debut album of STRAY GODS will be out in September from SYMMETRIC RECORDS.
Until then, you can follow their Facebook page for more info and music at:
Artur Almeida: Vocals
Bob Katsionis: All Rhythm/Lead Guitars & Keyboards
Gus Macricostas: Bass
Thanos Pappas: Drums
Dan Baune: Guest guitar solos