Linkin Park fan? Discover without further delay the tribute band METEORA in this new written interview!
Hi Meteora, thank you for taking the time to answer our questions! Can you introduce yourselves and tell us about your band?
Hi Valentine, we are METEORA, the Linkin Park tribute band (formed in 2015) in the Lille region. We are five friends (Jia, Thibaut, Julien Victor, and Alexis) at the core of the group, making music together since middle school. We've always had at least one rock/metal composition group together since 2007, and we wanted to create a tribute project to pay homage to the band that marked our generation and introduced many fans/musicians to metal, Linkin Park.
Since 2015, it has been a joy to perform live with childhood friends in front of audiences in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, in magnificent venues and diverse atmospheres. However, we only do about ten to twelve concerts a year because it's truly a passion project, and with our professional and family lives, we sometimes make sacrifices to make ourselves available simultaneously.
You welcomed a new member, Mitchell (alias Matt Se7en on YouTube), as the lead singer a few months ago. How did his integration into the group go?
Mitchell is a Dutchman whom we discovered ten years ago on YouTube with impressive covers. Earlier this year, when we needed a new singer, we came across his Linkin Park covers. We took a chance by proposing our project to him, not expecting much, but it turned out he was eager to perform live with a band again, and doing it by covering Linkin Park was a dream for him. So, the stars were perfectly aligned.
We are very, very happy to have him with us; he brings a lot to the group, and he shares many passions and values with us. Initially, we were a bit worried about welcoming a member who doesn't speak French and fearing communication challenges, but it went really well, and it's helping us improve our English. We're also teaching him a few words in French.
Tell us about the role Linkin Park plays in your lives.
Linkin Park has always been a significant band for us, on the same level as Slipknot, Rammstein, Rage Against The Machine, System Of A Down... These are the bands we listened to repeatedly in middle school and continue to enjoy nostalgically. We had the privilege of seeing Linkin Park in concert in July 2017 (at Werchter), just a few days before our idol Chester Bennington passed away... these two moments profoundly affected us with different emotions.
Being in a Linkin Park tribute band has clearly strengthened our passion for this band. We aim to take this live tribute seriously, so we study Linkin Park's equipment, studio and live sound, their history, their show... we've listened to all the songs, even the bonus/demo tracks.
Do you have any advice for an independent band looking to start as a tribute band?
The first piece of advice would be to play music live, regardless of the project (originals, covers, tribute), savoring the experience while staying critical of your performance to always seek improvement in the show (equipment, stage performance, etc.).
For tribute bands, we recommend choosing a band to cover out of passion, but also assessing your ability to honor the band live and provide a quality performance in terms of stage presence or musicality. Also, it's common sense, but we would suggest choosing a rare or nonexistent tribute band; for example, there is no Avenged Sevenfold or Sum 41 tribute in France... while there are twenty or thirty Muse tributes in France. Yet, there would be demand for such a band if the tribute is of high quality.
You have the opportunity to perform on notable stages (Hellfest Cult, Halloween Tribute Fest...). Is there a concert that particularly stood out for you? If yes, which one and why?
We work a lot on booking and even self-producing some shows because all these great dates don't (except some) come to us automatically. We still have to fight to play in new cities to promote the tribute scene and meet new Linkin Park fans.
We are infinitely happy to play more and more in magnificent venues, in front of increasingly larger audiences, and in cities we have had the pleasure or will have the pleasure to discover (Nancy, Lyon, Vannes, Annecy, Bordeaux, Toulouse, Nantes, Namur, Charleroi, Compiègne, Liège...).
One concert, in particular, marked us due to its exceptional context, in November 2018 at Paulette in Nancy, which was sold out (550 people) for several months... and it happened on the first day of the yellow vests movement! Consequently, we had a lot of difficulty reaching Nancy by road with the blockades, so there was a lot of tension and stress accumulated during the day... then we learned that our singer, who at the time came from Lyon, was completely blocked there with no way to join us.
We had to perform this much-anticipated concert without "our Chester Bennington," and despite everything... we managed to deliver a very good performance with our Mike Shinoda who covered for two, plus the singers from the other two bands who came on stage to sing a few songs with us... we even invited someone from the audience to sing with us, and he was exceptional. After the concert, we were emotionally and physically exhausted by this day... but proud to have succeeded in delivering a quality performance despite the difficult circumstances.
Talking about music and concerts. What's on your merch table?
For several years, we've been selling Snapback caps and giving away Meteora stickers. We had many requests for T-shirts, so we wanted to start producing T-shirts for a while, but as always, we wanted to do things right and find a cool design first. Once the budget was available and the right idea found, we launched about fifty Meteora T-shirts (featuring the Gundam referring to the Reanimation album cover) with Distrolution.
During our performance at the Halloween Tribute Fest... we didn't expect to sell as many, with around forty sales out of the fifty in stock! We are very pleased with the public's reception for these T-shirts, and we have already placed an order for another hundred T-shirts.
We will consider, perhaps, making sweatshirts or other T-shirts with different designs. Once again, we'll have to put our heads together to come up with a cool design. Thanks to your team for the support and the quality of our T-shirts... all at a very interesting price.
Overall, as musicians but also as music fans, what are your favorite merch items and why?
As music fans, we're not necessarily original... all members of Meteora have T-shirts, tank tops, caps, and hoodies from their favorite bands (LP, Rammstein, BTMH, Slipknot, Red Hot, Rage, The Ghost Inside...) because these are things you can wear daily and proudly display.
Any final words!
Thanks for these relevant questions! We are very happy to work with Distrolution... we hope to realize even more merch projects with you, hopefully to the delight of Linkin Park fans or simply Meteora followers.
We also invite all Linkin Park fans to our upcoming concerts in Bordeaux (January 6), Amnéville (February 24), Compiègne (March 9), Vannes (March 31)... as well as other concerts or festivals in preparation for 2024 in Paris, the East, towards Mons (Belgium), Lyon.
Thanks from the bottom of our hearts to all the spectators who come to see us, follow us, and encourage us!