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Vorig jaar gaf Wicked Maraya eindelijk terug een teken van leven mits een kersverse digitale EP "Chapters". Waar ze hun vertrouwde sound koppelen met wat modernere elementen, maar wees gerust het blijft Wicked Maraya, zanger Falco stond ons maar al te graag te woord!

Written by Nico


Last year one off our favourite bands finally gave a sign and released some new music. "Chapters" is once again a brilliant piece of music, where band brings a perfect mixture between their old sound mixed with some moderner elements!  We had a cool chat with singer Falco.


Hey there guys how's it going? Been a while, unfortunately not much happened after the band's last album, how come?

Hi Nico!!! Hope all is well!!! Thank you so much for this opportunity!!! Very true... Unfortunately, the timing was a bit off on all fronts. The economics of touring Europe, which we were really hoping to do, was definitely a huge factor in the negative. The cost of bringing us over was just not realistic at the time in regard to tour support, and we were not really prepared on our end to do our part. We had hoped to make a WICKED MARAYA / METAL CHURCH 1994 Re-Deux Tour happen when their return CD with Mike Howe came out, but it just was not meant to be. Since I live in South Florida, I have been fortunate enough to see the METAL CHURCH guys over the years when they have done some of the Heavy Metal Cruises, and for quite some time their Sound Engineer / Tour Manager did the same for us. So the plans just didn't work out. Also covid happened, which I think affected many people in different ways. On the WICKED MARAYA front, it didn't really affect us as we had no immediate plans to do anything so life just kind of continued on...


If I am not mistaken you guys have other side projects next to Wicked Maraya!?

Yes we all are pretty busy LOL. I have 2 full time non-music careers, and I front one of the most popular Rock/Party Cover Bands here in the Ft. Lauderdale area and have kept my voice in shape by singing several times a week. Rob, who has returned to the Family since he last played with us in 1987, plays all around the NYC scene, as well as produces Artists. Michael runs a very successful home remodel / design company. John has his own studio, Front Row Recording, and has produced and written with many top NY Bands covering all different genres. John has fully absorbed all the production wizardry we all experienced working with the legendary Jim Morris and has taken it to his own level and is truly one of the best Producers for our music. I will touch more on that later! And Dan has been just a bit busy this past year running his studio, Soundmine Recording. Not to mention working with Andy Wallace mixing Gojira, Avenged Sevenfold and getting a Grammy Nomination for his work with Ghost! He has also worked on several DORO records! So, needless to say, we all have our schedules pretty packed!


Finally, some new music and It sounds fantastic (some off your best work to date), 'CHAPTERS' and divided in Chapters ... tell us something more about it, I guess there is a story of a topic behind this?

Thank you very much for those words! They really mean a lot! And YES!!! We are beyond excited about what we have created after quite some time. This time, the timing was right for WICKED MARAYA to get back in the Studio! If there was a benefit to the pandemic time, it is that the music world kept going... and we all were working steady with our other projects either in the Studio or playing Live. So our music vibe was happening, and just kept growing. John and Dan were busy with their studios, and the creativity was flowing, Michael was spending hours in his studio playing guitar and I was constantly performing. Mid 2022 we all just started really communicating about new music and before I knew it, I had 5 songs from John in my email that blew my mind!!! I worked on melodies and lyrics in my little "Closet Studio" and in January 2023, I flew up to NY and Front Row Recording and John and I worked on Vocal Pre-Production for 4 days. Once we got together and started, we both were quite excited with the creativity and performance that was being recorded. As the main songwriter, John has always had the pulse of our sound, but as a Producer, I was blown away by his approach and his thought process. And while many say you should never produce yourself, in this case there was no one better to do it. A classic vibe with a modern touch was the perfect combination. Plus, I came to the Studio ready to take no prisoners, and the energy just kept growing. We finished vocals on a majority of the songs and then in March we all went to Soundmine Recording for 11 days to finish the CD. We ended up keeping all the vocals from Pre-Production and worked on layering and continuing the creativity. We brought in the JT Lambert School Choir to complete a vision we had for 'Chapter V' which was very cool!!! Dan handled the mixing duties and brought all the past years' experience to the mixing console. It was the first time in 25 years all of us were together in a Studio working, and it felt like no time had passed. Plus, having grown up together, it was a blast going through all the memories and just laughing and having a blast literally 24/7. We really were focused and the energy and creativity was in full effect. And the result is CHAPTERS!!! The idea for the CHAPTERS concept came from us not wanting to give the songs 'typical Titles'. So we had the songs as I, II, III, IV & V all throughout the recording process. And, as sometimes happens when all things come together, the song order actually followed a loose story line that was created throughout each song. And as we started thinking about artwork, design, etc. we thought to call each song a 'Chapter'... and then the CD Title just followed and felt right. The lyrical content does follow a story line from a 'beginning to an end to a new beginning', so what better way to tell it than with different 'Chapters'? Lyrically, everything from life, death, family, country, love, & hate are explored throughout a symbolic 'lyrical social commentary'. I like to be vague enough so that the listener can feel what they feel from listening to the song, regardless of what my meanings may or may not be. That is the journey that I love listening to music, and we feel we have created that with CHAPTERS. Every Song can stand on its own, yet together they weave a tale. 


We saw this is going to be a digital ep, nothing physical? How come? 

Yes, the plan was to release it Digitally worldwide. We got so many requests for physical copies, so we made some available through our website. We know the market for physical CD's is shrinking, however we do realize that, even small, there is a market! 


Is this EP a predecessor for a full length? Or does this stand on its own? Is more music to follow?

There is definitely MORE music coming! We thought about adding to the EP, however, it was such a cool moment in time and we feel the Songs have a certain vibe to them and we didn't want to mess with it. But we currently have a 'BONUS' Track ready that we will have out sometime after the release of CHAPTERS, and then we will have more songs coming!!! We really feel like we have created some of, if not our best, music and we want to continue.


Of course, we would like to know if there is a chance of a European tour or not? (I know expensive these days, or are there also other reasons?)

That is ultimately the GOAL!!! We are more prepared to help ourselves if need be this time, and we would love to hear from any Touring or Booking Agencies that would like to have WICKED MARAYA come and play. We are going to look into the 2024 Festivals and would like to be a part of as many as we can!!! We WANT to be active and playing LIVE AGAIN!!!


Anything left to say?

PLENTY! As I always do, LOL. Nico, thank you so much for this Interview. You have been a great supporter of WICKED MARAYA and we are very appreciative!!! ALSO, in this 'New Age' of Music, we are quickly realizing that the 'Socials' are VERY IMPORTANT. Especially here in the USA. So we would ask that everyone please SHARE, LIKE & FOLLOW our Social Media Pages. We have a Linktree Page that connects to our Spotify, Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok, X, & YouTube Pages for easy access to all, as well as our website. The Linktree Page is: https://linktr.ee/wickedmaraya. ANY & ALL Social Media support will only strengthen our position in WICKED MARAYA getting out to the masses! And last but certainly not least, we want to say THANK YOU to all our FANS who have kept WICKED MARAYA alive all these years! We look forward to bringing you more music and seeing you LIVE!!!

Photocredit : Tom J. Flynn

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