Tragedian is the brainchild of America-born…
…guitarist Gabriele J. Palermo, Hamburg based Tragedian have taken slow but important steps onto the international metal scene. Formed at the end of summer 2002 with the help of local musicians, the band that would become Tragedian worked on pieces of songs Palermo brought with him to Germany on cassette tapes, resulting in their first official demo recordings the following year. Dubbed Demo 2003, the collection of songs was reviewed by several online publications and the critically acclaimed Metal Hammer magazine. Tragedian performed their first ever live show at Headbanger’s Ballroom in Hamburg, supporting Paragon, to a packed house, which was followed by support gigs with Mob Rules, Eternal Reign, Rebellion and Pagan’s Mind.
„I moved to Hamburg from Los Angeles, California,“ Palermo says of his, and ultimately Tragedian’s beginnings. „I moved to Hollywood in 1993, then moved to Hamburg because the music jobs dried up in L.A. and I didn’t fancy the new wave of American metal like System Of A Down, Korn and Limp Bizkit.“
Tragedian’s debut album, Dreamscape was released in September 2008, co-produced, mixed and mastered by Uwe Lulis (Rebellion, Grave Digger, Accept). The album was supported with a tour through Sweden and Finland alongside Cryonic Temple and Burning Point. A second album, Decimation, surfaced in August 2013 with a new band line-up, which was followed by Unholy Divine in 2017, again with new musicians.
According to Palermo, what separates each of the three Tragedian releases is that none of them are alike songwise, performance-wise, lyrically or production-wise.
„Three different years, three different mindsets of music. But overall, call us a heavy melodic, slightly progressive band taking the best elements from our influences and putting them all in one pot.“
The diversity between albums can be credited to the line-up changes along the way, but it shouldn’t be misinterpreted as Tragedian being an unstable environment. Palermo is the leader, main songwriter and producer, but most of the previous members left the ranks over the years due to job and / or family commitments, while others were enlisted as session players to fill in the blanks. According to Palermo, only a few former members left Tragedian due to internal problems.
As of January 2020, Tragedian’s new line-up of Palermo, Joan Pabon (vocals), Dawid Wieczorek (bass), Denis Scheither (keyboards) and Nicolò Bernini (drums) are hard at work on the band’s all-important fourth album. As always, songwriting begins with Palermo, followed by composing lyrics and vocal melodies and recording basic tracks, which are then shared with the other band members. The album is still in its infant stages, but Palermo guarantees that fans who are familiar with Tragedian will recognize the band for who they are, „but we will branch out in terms of variation because the Unholy Divine was too much in-your-face.“
Previous Tragedian albums have boasted guest appearances by artists including Uwe Lulis, Kai Hansen (Helloween, Gamma Ray) and Bob Katsionis (Firewind), and Palermo hints that a few names are on the table for guests on the new album. In the meantime, they are searching for a new record label and looking at possibilities for hitting the road in late 2020 into early 2021 while completing work on the new album.
„The goal is to compose new ideas that weren’t written on the first three albums, which until now I’ve been lucky,“ Palermo says of the new music. „I want to expand myself as a songwriter and producer while remaining loyal to the Tragedian sound, and try to write songs that weren’t on any of the previous releases.“