TBCSS: S03E05 – In My Arms

Ritorna da me

 

Soul of mine, resting in torment
I feel you in my dreams, come back to me!

 

Men react, men fight, men show off, men scream, men provide, men make justice.

But there’s a soul suffering quietly, a broken spirit that’s been mourning with composure for a long, long time, keeping despair within.

Wounded, inside and out… forsaken in her own blood and misery… Shena lies on the floor, helplessly witnessing the duel between Daltor and the love of her life, Sendor. Her body is torn by bruises, but the physical pain can’t compare to the ache she feels in her heart.

The gracious queen of Icy Forest carried her child in her womb, knowing her love wasn’t going to be accepted by her people. She gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, convinced that she, together with Sendor, would eventually find a way to make everyone welcome little Surod as their prince. Because that’s what love does. Love trusts. Love believes.

But that little baby was abruptly taken away from her. So soon. So unfairly.
She couldn’t find comfort in her soul mate, because the shock of his loss made him go crazy. He took it upon himself to find a way to bring back his son, losing touch with reason, getting angry and isolated, leaving Shena alone.

So there she was, a mother without a baby,  a woman without her companion.

The icy queen kept herself together for the sake of her realm, fighting back the tears, building a strong coat of frost over her heart, to keep its sore core from getting shattered into a million pieces.

 

[Shena]
As ages pass and fly away
the men keep battling,
but in the end nobody cares
what I went through.
I felt him growing inside of me,
felt him moving inside of me
and I wondered “how can I be so in love
with someone I don’t even see?”

So here I am laid on the floor
and they keep battling.
Sendor is both my enemy
and my kindred soul.
How I wish that he still could see
his true love when he looks at me.
In this battle against the inevitable fate
the one who really lost is me.

He passed away, hopelessly,
he passed away in front of my eyes
when his little life had just begun,
you don’t know what’d give
just to hold him once again
in my arms.

Daltor is blind and not intent,
but he keeps battling,
he’s so completely stuck inside
his vindictive mind.
And while I’m making my worn out plea
he falls down landing on his knees
and now Sendor’s really tired of this game
so he hits him and knocks him down.

He passed away, hopelessly,
he passed away in front of my eyes,
when his little life had just begun,
you don’t know what’d give
just to hold him once again
in my arms and feel the rhythm of
his gentle breath here on my chest,
while I sing to him a lullaby
and this pain I must endure.
Fate’s not ours to decide,
we can’t control our lives,
we have to learn to cope
and move on.

Anima mia che riposi in tormento,
nei sogni ti sento, ritorna da me!

He passed away, hopelessly,
he passed away in front of my eyes
when his little life had just begun
You don’t know what’d give
just to hold him once again
in my armsand feel the rhythm of his gentle breath,
while I sing a lullaby!
And this pain I must endure,
we can’t control our lives.
I just try to cope
and to move on,
for I do believe
we will meet again,
and I’ll hold him tight
in my arms.

 

Credits:
– Guidelines written by Sara Squadrani
– The Black Crystal Sword Saga written by Daniele Mazza
– All Lyrics used by kind permission of Limb Music Publishing, Germany.
All Rights reserved.

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Where the hell is Ancient Bards?

Hello everyone,

WE’RE ALIVE!

It’s been quite some time. Ancient Bards played their last show almost 1 year ago, on November 26th, and then kinda vanished. What happened?

Well, life happened.

I’m not going to tell you in detail what happened to each of us, ‘cause I’m not writing this to complain or to raise anyone’s compassion, this is just an overdue update. You know how it is: music can’t be our main focus, we have to put our actual jobs, our families, and our health first.

We’ve worked hard for 10 years, putting every dime and every drop of spare time we had in this project: Ancient Bards slowly grew more and more and right in the moment our career needed that extra push to try to take flight, we found ourselves without resources. We kinda reached the highest peak of our career – so far – in the exact moment things in our personal life started to fall apart. Some of us had a lot on their plate and needed to turn their attention to what was more urgent.

However we were aware it was just a phase and, although we didn’t know how long it would last, we kept on working on Ancient Bards in any way we could, writing stuff whenever the gift of time met the gift of inspiration.

Let me just say we are overwhelmed by all the messages we receive from people asking when the new album will be out. Your eagerness for new stuff is awesome and makes us so proud! Thank you so much!
We always answer to those messages with “the new album is in the making!” and it is the absolute truth: it’s taking time, but it’s coming and it’s going to sound great!

We’re all ok now and back on track. We want to reward your patience by giving you the best of us, an album that is worth the wait. So bear with us and we’re all going to see the light!

You’ll be hearing from Ancient Bards soon, we can’t wait!

Hugs

Sara

Sendor’s little Shop

As you guys know, Ancient Bard’s been celebrating its 10 year anniversary with the “10 Bardic Years Tour”. We’ve been around Europe, to Japan and had our last show in Italy, just right at home.

To celebrate our journey, Japanese Assault Fest has made some pretty kick ass Tees with a design that combines the artworks of our first three albums. This is a super limited edition design and we got to bring some T-shirts home, which are now available for purchase on our Online Store. There are only a couple pieces left by now, so if you want to treat yourself for Christmas hurry up!

On the store you can also find our logo patches, ready to be stitched to your jacket, while the Red Sword Tees are back in stock.

Take a tour of Sendor’s little Shop here: http://ancientbards.bigcartel.com

A few pictures from our shows:


See you all soon!

Sara

Let me tell you the truth

I always go on about how hard it is to tour as an emerging band, how we spend hours in a tiny van and sleep in dirty places with very few showers and zero bidets.
LIES! Those are lies, buhauhuahauhahaha!!! The truth is we are actually very rich. Music is bringing us so much money we can even buy a house in every country we play in! It’s so awesome to be rich.

Last time, it wasn’t our intention, but we had to buy a place in Belgium. It was quite a bargain, we didn’t splurge, but a TV show offered us more money than we had spent for the purchase just to take a tour of our house! It goes without saying that we accepted. Yes, we decided to show everyone our mansion and come clean about our true way of life, because hiding and playing poor wasn’t fun anymore. You’ll find the video here below:

So, what do you think of the house? Did you enjoy the video?
To all English speakers: I’m sorry! I’m aware my English is very bad here, but that’s the best I could do. We recorded this in just one quick take the morning after FemME, before leaving to come back to Italy. We didn’t have much time, we had to pass the Gotthard Tunnel before 9PM or it would have been closed and driving up the pass is something you don’t wanna do when the journey is already 17 hours long as it is.

As stated in the final disclaimer, that obviously wasn’t our house. We were lucky to find a very good deal on AirBnB, the house was amazing and the owner was super nice. This was definitely a step up in comparison to our average abodes.

ab-villa

Where will we end up next? I’ll keep you posted!

Take care,
Sara

My Brainstorm thread of humanity

Dipped in the blood, the dust, and the dirt…

In celebration of the 10th anniversary of the foundation of Ancient Bards, we are going to play in several cities in the Netherlands and it got me to think of the last time we went there.

On November, 12th 2015 Ancient Bards was playing in London, at the Underworld. I had some nice footage of us freaking out about going down the Eurotunnel and then trying to stick to the right side of the road, but I accidentally canceled everything!
Anyway, the show went great, we had fun on stage and I have to say that the number of people who showed up at the venue was larger than we expected, we met a lot of old and new friends and that felt nice. It was a good night, rainy, but good.

After spending the night in Camden it was time to get on the road again, we had a train to catch! We had a day off before the gig in Apeldoorn, so we took our time to take a look around on our way to Arnhem where we were going to sleep that night. The underwater convoy took us to Calais, from there we went to Oostende to see the Atlantic Wall, then made a quick detour to visit the beautiful Bruges and got to Arnhem for dinner.

I loved that day. I remember feeling so happy, I enjoyed every minute with my friends of Ancient Bards and Dadda (which is fortunate, considering we’re always so close together in the small space we have to share in the van) and, in spite of all the time spent driving, I liked being in 4 different countries in one day, hearing people talk in English, then French, then Walloon, then Dutch. I felt like a true World Citizen (ok, maybe just European, but still).

It’s when we arrived in Arnhem and could connect to a WIFI network that we discovered what horrible things were happening in Paris. Needless to say, we were all petrified and deeply sad.

The next day we drove to Apeldoorn with a heavy heart.
Enjoying music, watching our favorite band, having a drink with friends, grabbing a bite in the fresh air… they’re things we all do, nice little things that make life worth living, little drops of happiness.
In a moment, the sacredness of life and freedom were violated again,and it happened to the concert goers, the beverage drinkers and the food eaters of Paris this time.

The majority of people were killed during a concert. How many times did we go to a concert? How many times did I sing at a concert? A lot. And I was going to play at one more that very night, at Brainstorm Festival. All the bands there were pretty shaken. Te organization called a minute of silence and then everyone paid their respects to the victims with a long heartfelt applause.

When our time to get onstage came, we were ready. I had to warm up thoroughly because my voice didn’t feel quite in shape, but I was fine. Fine, until I started singing and realized that some of the lyrics, which I always associated with something fictional, were getting all too real. I tried to keep it together even when, during The Last Resort, the image of the kings dipped in the blood really started to get to me.

There was nothing I could do but to dedicate the next song, In My Arms, to the victims and everyone affected by the tragedy. I didn’t do it to be dramatic and it’s not even like dedicating something to someone who can’t hear you is going to change anything. But that was another song of loss, death, and pain and I needed the audience’s support.

I received it.

13343054_1136523276386548_5958539691314494534_n
Credit: LoudImages (Marc van Kollenburg)

Maybe I was just in over my head, but I swear I never felt that emotional during a gig. I think the audience felt it, because everyone was with me, kinda like we were all holding hands. In fact, there are no videos of that song on youtube, I like to think that it’s because that was a moment not to be lived through the filter of a screen (perhaps there are tons of vids that simply weren’t posted, who knows!).

The bards left me and Daniele alone on the stage at the end. Then we exited too and my hands were shaking. I was shivering all over. It was a very powerful experience, whether it was all in my head or shared between me and the audience. I am thankful for the things I felt that night, I cherish them because I think it’s important to value these connections between humans.

Thank you, everyone at Brainstorm Festival, I hope to see you again! As a matter of fact, I’d like to invite you all to see us again, hopefully on a lighter mood this time, whenever you can when we come nearby.

Till nex time,

Sara

TBCSS: S03E03 – Flaming Heart

tnkotw

In the forest, the sun filters through the branches and reveals the immense beauty of a lush nature. The creatures move in harmony with the breath of the trees and a mischievous wind shakes the leaves.

Among the dense undergrowth, two figures carefully observe this spectacle, in search of a prey. A father, kind but strict, teaches his teenage son the art of hunting.

When at a short distance a bear appears, the man proudly announces to his son he has taught everything he needs to try to capture his first prey, on his own.

The boy timidly follows the directions: he lays flat on the ground and approaches the bear, quietly and without taking his eyes off it. But in his heart, fear makes its way. A big bear is a way too dangerous test for a beginner, and in his mind, the feeling of his father not having regard for his life is added to the fear of death.

The tumult in his heart prevents him from sharpening his senses to perceive sounds and movements around him. In a moment of distraction, the boy feels the sensation of something climbing up his leg so he emits a cry of terror.

The bear, alerted lunges at the victim and wounds him in the chest with a paw, knocking him into the mud. The father then gets up and tries to attract the animal to himself and, through some expert hunter’s techniques, makes him flee.

The boy, disheartened for the humiliation, in pain from the wounds and disappointed for the abandonment, can’t bear the reproaches of his father, who scolds him out of distress. Blinded by rage, the young man rails against the parent blaming him for what happened, and after accusing him of being old and useless, he runs away screaming he will never go hunt with him again.

Crying as he runs, his proud and crushed heart rejects any bond with the family he belongs to.

But as the moment of shock fades away, the boy realizes that he has poured on his father his own insecurity: the disappointment of not being able to grant him the fortitude of a still too fragile mind has made him angry.

Determined to apologize, he goes through the woods and runs toward the house. No obstacles can block his way to forgiveness, his desperate and determined race.

At the castle, however, the door of his father’s room is closed. Worried about having hurt him irreparably, he begs him to let him in but gets no answer.

Tired of waiting and eager for his embrace, the young man breaks through the door. But once inside, he faces a chilling scene: his father’s body is hanging from a beam.

The boy, shocked, takes the corpse on the floor. Hugging his father, he still holds out his apology.

In his flaming heart, desperation has the upper hand. The sense of guilt for having caused the death of his father is soon accompanied by the certainty that now he is forced to fortify his fragile mind, because now he, Daltor, is the new King of the West.

And no one must know.

No one must know the King has committed suicide because of the prince’s inadequacy.

3.  FLAMING HEART

[Man]
Be careful my son there’s a bear
there in the clearing,
I taught you what you need to know,
this time it’s your turn.
Come down now and sneak through the grass,
slowly get closer,
don’t ever lose sight of your prey,
don’t make any noise,
feel the wind blowing and breathe with the wild
in sweet harmony.
Every fighter knows that his chances are stronger
when peace lies within.

Go!

Well you made the bear run away,
you’re injured and dirty.
Why didn’t you listen to me?
Do you ever learn?
[Daltor]
But father it wasn’t my fault,
I did what you told me,
I followed your every advice,
look what they got me!
Maybe it’s time to admit that you are worthless,
you’re grey and you’re old.
I don’t wanna hunt with you ever again,
will you leave me alone?

[Storyteller]
In Daltor’s flaming heart
when judgment falls apart,
resentment runs like a river that flows out of its bed,
infectious makes him lie,
disown his blood ties,
disgrace the holy bond of family.

[Daltor]
My words resound in my head,
I’m incredibly sad and ashamed at the same time.

[Storyteller]
Running fast between the oaks,
Sliding down the slopes,
Daltor leaves the forest and heads to his father.

[Daltor]
I’m rushing to get to get back home,
I can’t wait to see him,
I want to look straight in his eyes,
and apologize.
I hope he’ll forgive my contempt,
I’m so unworthy.
Oh father please open the door!
Oh please let me in!
You can’t leave me outside just let me explain,
I’m breaking in!
Oh my god he’s hanging down from the ceiling!
Oh why! Tell me why!

 

[Storyteller]
In Daltor’s flaming heart
when judgment falls apart,
resentment runs like a river that flows out of its bed,
infectious makes him lie ,
disown his blood ties,
disgrace the holy bond of family.

In Daltor’s aching heart,
as his world falls apart,
despair grows faster than weeds on sunny summer’s day,
it feeds upon his guilt
for he has to be
the new king of the West
and be brave
and pretend
for no one has to know
it was
his fault!

Credits:
– Guidelines written by Sara Squadrani
– The Black Crystal Sword Saga written by Daniele Mazza
– All Lyrics used by kind permission of Limb Music Publishing, Germany.
– Photo credit: Phoenix via photopin (license)

Congrats on the Oscar, Maestro!

Please allow me for once to show off some of my patriotism, which I usually tend to smother.
Last night, at the 88th Academy Awards ceremony, Maestro Ennio Morricone won the Oscar for Best Original Score for Quentin Tarantino’s movie The Hateful Eight. This important acknowledgement made the proud Italian inside of me scream and shout out of happiness.

Film score music undoubtedly has a heavy influence on us Ancient Bards as musicians, especially on Daniele who usually writes all that we play,  and along with other great composers such as John Williams, Hans Zimmer and Thomas Bergersen (to name a few), Ennio Morricone is one of our greatest sources of inspiration, both music and career wise. The fact that Morricone happens to be Italian too makes us all very proud, ’cause us Italians are people of art and poetry, but we often forget it, undermining our own value.
Morricone had already received an honorary Oscar back in 2007, but this time it was at “actual” Oscar and I loved seeing an 87 year old genius receive recognition for his work, take the statuette and deliver a speech (in Italian) with his voice broken by that tender mix of emotion and genuine gratitude. I also loved how he thought of his other esteemed competitors and, above all, how he dedicated the award to his wife Maria, because any manifestation of long-lasting true love and profound respect makes my heart melt (life goals!).
I was happy to see that a couple of days ago Ennio also received his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and, I have to say, this was long overdue!

I have two pieces that I rank among my most favorites of all time.
The firs is Finale di un Concerto Romantico Interrotto (literally Finale of an interrupted romantic concert) from the movie Making Love (Ricky Tognazzi’s Canone Inverso, taken from the book of the same name written by Paolo Maurensig).
I swear to you guys, whenever I listen to this piece of art I have to concentrate to avoid crying! I can’t contain myself, the melody is from another world and the whole composition is the poetic and pure expression of passion, love, sacrifice, sadness, glory. Everything is so perfect to me I let myself bathe into the piano and the violins. Give it a listen and tell me if it isn’t beautiful!

 My other favorite is one of Morricone’s most famous pieces, Gabriel’s Oboe from The Mission and, quite frankly, this one doesn’t even really need anymore words.

Actually, no piece of good music at all should ever be ruined, categorized, shrunk, minimized, impoverished by using words. I say when music touches your heart just enjoy it, because that heavenly feeling you feel needs no explanation, it’s yours and nobody else’s, treasure it.

So, all there’s left to say is, yet again, another THANK YOU to the incomparable Maestro Ennio Morricone, for giving us the privilege of listening to his music, for being a solid example of modesty in greatness, and for providing us with a whole lot of precious inspiration. Grazie Maestro ❤

Tons of love,
Sara

A big THANK YOU

It’s only been three shows with Rhapsody but they were enough to confirm once again the actual reasons why me and the other bards do what we do.
For the last 7 years our life has been an incessant balancing act between the fulfillment of our duties and the pursuit of our dreams. For what concerns me, at 19, once finished high school, I found myself having to decide what kind of career I wanted to undertake. I was really envious of all of those who had clear in their minds they wanted to be a doctor, or a lawyer, or a veterinarian… me? I only ever liked music, I would have loved to be a singer, but you know, unless you make it big, singing isn’t really profitable (in Italy being a musician isn’t even commonly considered a real job).
So I chose an academic path that intrigued me but that I wasn’t really passionate about, while, just for fun, I started my journey with Ancient Bards, having absolutely no clue of the satisfactions and places it would bring me someday.
What I’m trying to say is that in all these years not a single dime came in our pockets, the little money we get is always so much less than what we have to spend, we can’t certainly pay our bills with music. So why do we do it?

We do it for the passion.
Musicians is what we are, we can’t close our eyes and pretend we don’t feel that burning feeling inside our harts that prompts us to go out and play our music loud and proud and share energy with everyone who wants to listen. The stage is our element, it’s the place where we feel at home, together, ’cause we are a wonderful family, the bardic family ❤ .

We do it for you.
I can’t even begin to describe the feeling I get when I see our fans singing every song with their hands in the air, when at the end of a concert people wait for us to come out and take pictures with us, even bring us gifts. Every single act of love and support from you guys is worth every sacrifice we make.

So thank you, thank you for making us believe that with hard work and dedication we can keep our dream alive!

Forever grateful,
Sara

Boy did we have fun!

It’s a wrap! Ancient Bards played as supporting act on the last 3 shows of LT’s Rhapsody’s Prometheus Cinematic Tour together with Temperance and it was AMAZING!
We really enjoyed all the shows and felt so much energy coming from the audience! We are all glad we had the chance to see again some old friends and meet new ones, the love we receive from our fans is priceless.
In bologna I even received a bunch of flowers as a gift for my recent graduation, how sweet is that?

Flowers

Here are some sleepless but happy faces:

IMG_0042 IMG_0050 IMG_0047

We had a great time at all the gigs, but Milan was really special as it was the last concert of the tour so we got to get a little crazy and “stage bomb” everyone. You know for everyone who grew up listening to Emerald Sword as a teenager it was pretty awesome to be able to stand on the stage and sing with Rhapsody themselves! Such a fun and epic moment, simply glorious!
See it for yourself:

I’m also glad I got to hang out with Temperance, Chiara (such a sweet and friendly lady ❤ ) and, of course, Alle Conti (Trick of Treat’s new album Rabbit’s Hill pt.2 will be out soon I can assure you it’s going to be fantastic!).

I’d like to thank everyone who showed up at the gigs, you helped us building great memories we will keep in our hearts forever!
Hugs!

Take care,
Sara

 

I’m back!

Hey there everyone, I hope you’re all ok!
I’ve been off the radar lately because I’ve been fully absorbed by the preparation of my dissertation… That’s right, I finally got my college degree in building engineering and architecture!

Being a student while trying to make it as a singer wasn’t easy and I still have a long way to go in both directions, but you’ll definitely see more from me from now on. What’s for sure now is that this is the final week of LT’s Rhapsoody’s European tour and Ancient Bards will perform as supporting act in the final three Italian shows, in Bologna, Rome and Milan, together with Temperance.

It’s been a busy month full of events for me and I hope everyone who shows up to the concerts will help me celebrate!

See you on the road my friends!
Lots of love,

 

Sara