In the 36th part of our Manilla Road Special, Andrew Halliday, singer and bassist of the English heavy metal band Culloden, has his say. We hope you enjoy the read.
André: Would you classify Manilla Road as an important source of inspiration for your music?
Andrew: For my own music I can’t cite them as a direct influence but when I listen to their music I can hear just how much they’ve influenced bands I do take inspiration from like Visigoth and Midnight Force.
Can you point out a special moment that you experienced with Manilla Road?
The special moment for me was first hearing “Necropolis“. Captivated me instantly.
What makes Manilla Road special in your opinion?
So, I come from growing up on euro power metal which is frequently very over the top, cheesy and grandiose which I adore of course, so first hearing a band have such similar elements or sword, sorcery and fantasy in a way that was more like some Super Saiyan form of Rainbow rather than another Rhapsody of Fire style band it was amazing. It took me years to dig back into the band and explore their records more though and to this day I still am learning more about what made them so iconic!
What are your three favourite Manilla Road albums?
I can only really name Crystal Logic and Open the Gates as the only other tracks I can think of from the top of my head are scattered through their other albums but those two are wall to wall epics.
What’s the most underrated Manilla Road album in your opinion?
I can’t name an underrated album but I do recommend any and all Manilla Road albums, especially to myself. I’ve still yet to hear every track after all!
What are your five favourite Manilla Road tracks?
My five favourites are “Open the Gates“, “Crystal Logic“, “The Riddle Master“, “Necropolis“ and “Dreams of Eschaton“.
Which Manilla Road track moves you the most emotionally?
An individual track that moves me, has to be “Necropolis“ I always remember the first time hearing it all those years ago and it’s a nice feeling that always surfaces when I hear it again.
What’s your favourite solo/lead played by Mark Shelton?
“Crystal Logic“ has a great melody in it but otherwise its the lyrics and vocals that I tend to be drawn to with the band.
How would you define the term epic metal?
The term epic metal for me, is heavy metal that uses music, melody and rhythm both to tell stories, create images in our mind whether it be high fantasy landscapes and quests or great battles. There’s a lot of different ways to do that, how we do it is certainly different to say our mates in Midnight Force but we both use our music to bring these stories to life!
Are there any young bands inspired by Manilla Road that you appreciate?
There’s a fair few young bands inspired by them I appreciate I can hear their mark all over Fer de Lance, Achelous, Visigoth and Atlantean Kodex but I have to shout out for Midnight Force as my favourite of the lot especially live.
What do you generally think of Manilla Road‘s legacy and the current epic metal scene?
Manilla Road‘s legacy is amazing, it’s obviously helped bring something special to life in metal and the epic metal scene. For me the epic metal movement is best thing in metal happening right now. One of the things I feel that the delays in getting our own album done over the years is being able to take in inspiration from some of these other bands. I’ve always wanted to make music that helps bring stories to life and getting to be part of a movement with similar minded bands is great but hearing others bring out such splendid releases makes me love metal as a whole even more and want to keep doing what I do.