People who attended Bloodstock got a great surprise early on, when Illuminatus played an astounding set and, along side Gamma Ray, were the best band of the day.
Room Thirteen got the chance to interview Julio, Singer and Axe player for the band.

R13: Now we've had a few days to wind down after your brilliant Bloodstock show - how do you think the show went?

Julio: Playing in a room like the Assembly Rooms, packed with true devoted
Metal heads is a dream come true for any band. The experience was amazing for
us, and we hope it helped raise our profile a bit. The performance itself
wasn't the best we've ever had, perhaps in part due to the fact that, I must
admit, I was a little overwhelmed by the whole amazing experience - a few
thousand horns in the air is pretty daunting. We were also cut off early (5
minutes early to be exact) by a certain person whom I won't name at this
But the Bloodstock fans are the best any band can ever have, so we were
buzzing when we came off any way. Nobody can take that away from us. We gave
it all we had, that's for sure. I am currently recovering from mild whiplash.

R13: Who do you think was the best band there?

Julio: I was particularly blown away by our good friends FourwayKill over at the Darwin Stage, but out on the main stage I was particularly impressed by Children of Bodom. The energy and power of that band was amazing, And although I was inexcusably absent for Panic Cell's slot, from what I heard they totally ruled. It's what they do!

R13: You are dubbed a Nottingham-based post-metal group - would you say this is a fair label?

Julio: This is something that has come up before. Tags as a general thing are a pretty one-dimensional way to classify things, I think. It's probably some crap that certain journalists come up with when they can't be arsed to listen to the music properly and describe it as what it really is. Or something like that.
But if we do have to have a tag, 'post-metal' is a good way of describing us. Even though we are all big fans of all things metal, each one of us brings a lot of other styles into the mix, which creates something else that pays full homage to metal, but has developed differently. A mutation of sorts, I guess. But as I said, tags are complete bullshit and serve little purpose other than to create bandwagons that the rock tabloids can inflate and destroy as they require/please.

So, better "post-metal" than some other invention.

R13: Where did the name Illuminatus come from?

Julio: When I was at school some friends and I started a band and named it after a painting by HR Giger. We looked into the meaning of the whole thing, conspiracy theories and all that, and kept it. It's also a name that sticks in your head. The name initially stuck because we discovered it was actually impossible to come up with a band name - you have to steal it - but we eventually liked it. It's important to the whole mission of the band now, or course.

R13: Your new EP, "Aborted Revolutions" - how would you describe it?

Julio: The perfect unexpected gift for that special someone.

It's also our second EP, a self-financed 3-track record which contains the main tracks from our recent live sets, and it's our "current" release. It was produced by Harvey Birrel in 2003 and it's available for purchase from our website.

R13: What would you say was your best gig ever?

Julio: Without a doubt, Bloodstock 2004. Nothing comes close. Except Bloodstock
2003. Maybe.

R13: Who are your favourite bands?

Julio: Like I said, we all have different influences outside of metal. But I think bands like Metallica and Anathema and their respective derivatives probably largely influence our overall sound.

Personally, I am also a huge fan of In Flames and Rancid (Yes, that's right. The punk band.)

R13: Do you draw any inspiration from anyone or anything other than music?

Julio: It's hard not to be to be affected by anger and the frustrations of everyday life, especially when you're playing in a metal band, and it's even harder go about everyday life around here without getting pissed off with something! So yes, we find that there is a lot of inspiration to be found outside of music.

R13: How about music in general? Who's your idol?

Julio: My personal idols (like many metal heads of my age) will have to be James Hetfield. Pre-Metro sexual-wimpy-ass Hetfield, that is. His stage presence, his voice - everything. I'm also an admirer of other guys like Tim Armstrong and Kurt Cobain. Roger Waters is always a lyrical influence for me.

R13: Five years from now, what would you like Illuminatus to be doing?

Julio: Headlining Bloodstock 2009, and then touring Europe with Panic Cell and having the time of our lives.

But I would be happy with making a decent living out of doing what I love and coming off stage every night with whiplash and earache and feeling like the luckiest bastard in the world.

R13: Moving onto more specific questions - what did you think of Bloodstock? The croud and the setup and the sound and the whole general atmosphere?

Julio: The crowd and atmosphere were amazing. Bloodstock is one of the best metal gigs in the world. thanks largely to its devoted fanbase. They make everyone feel accepted and wanted, be it a band or a single person.

The organisers have also done a fine job with everything. The staff were friendly, security was fair, and the sound was amazing. Besides the usual problems that plagued us this time around, the festival was a massive success. From what i can remember, that is.

R13: Finally, any messages for fans?

Julio: Start a band! It's the best thing in the world. Don't ever give up and work as hard as you can. If you can't play, support your local scene. Spread the word, go to gigs. We need you all!

The UK has a growing metal scene with bands like 4WK and Panic Cell at the helm, and it's about fucking time this country's media shifted its lazy arse and took a look down at the grassroots of metal in this country.

We're here, and we can hold our own against anything that might come floating from stateside.

Thank you Bloodstock. You are truly great!