Decades of Doom and Dedication: Chatting with Raven Black Night

In the realm where heavy riffs meet haunting melodies, Raven Black Night has carved its unique path since its inception in 1999. ...


  • Would you mind introducing yourselves and giving a brief overview of Raven Black Night for those who may not be familiar with your work? (It would be great to meet the people behind the music and hear about your musical journey.)

Well me Jimmy, Petkoff guitar/Vocals, and Rino Amor Guitar started the band in 1999, I was and still do my other band The Loving Tongue was looking to get into something heavy doomy old school, etc.

I met Rino and we have diverse music tastes from Dio, Rainbow, Slayer, Discharge, Kiss Blues/Rock/Punk/metal, etc but we all meet at Black Sabbath.
We have had different drummers and bass players that added their Flair but it always sounds like Raven Black Night with me and Rino and our guitar sounds.
We have released three official CDs and an anthology – CHOOSE THE DARK [2005], which got us to Germany to play the Headbangers’ open-air/Hells Pleasure and Hard and Heavy summer nights in 2007.
We had great feedback and the cd sold really well being independent and with the help of Metal shops in Europe.

BARBERIAN WINTER[2013] came out on Metal Blade which we were very honored to be on the label in that time we kept playing around Australia like before and our profile worldwide increased, Metal Mytars was an anthology on Blood and Iron Records with our first cd and demos, In 2019 we were the first Australian band to play UP THE HAMMERS IN ATHENS GREECE a great Honour also.
RUN WITH THE RAVEN 2020 was put then as an act of defiance against Covid and is still growing.

Your music is a fascinating and distinct combination of doom, epic atmosphere, and heavy metal flavor. Can you share how you would describe your sound?

Thanks for the great description a very positive one. That is exactly how we see and hear our Music; it can be moody, primitive, emotional, and basically Heavy Rock/Metal with a foot in the old school and one in the future.

Can you tell me about the origins of your band and how you came up with the concept?

Well, when me and Rino started the band we had a bass player Matt Spencer on the Bass who was from the Death-type metal scene here and very talented. Our first Drummer Jeremy Lamas was the guitar player in Matts’s band and Rino’s friend.
I was from the Blues/Rock Classic Rock scene at first it was what I got myself into ha!!!!
But we just jammed and drank and laughed and eventually, Joe Toscano joined on drums. He came from a progressive scene, and the musical and visuals, and overall vision became clear in the begging; very doomy with epic metal and some prog we had candles and swords on the stage.
Back then in our hometown, all the metal bands were death or black metal or American-type metal, all the hard rock bands had become cover bands so we played with whoever would have us. There were some Gothic metal bands that gave us a chance like Virgin Black when we went to other parts of Australia we were very warmly accepted so the concept is ever evolving.

Is there a particular song or moment that you feel has strongly influenced the sound of Raven Black Night?

I would say it’s a combination of many things but I could say Black Sabbath in the beginning, now we feel we have grown into our own Destiny to speak.

Do you consider your tracks to be standalone stories or pieces of a larger epic saga, with songs like “Sheeba (Queen of the Ravens)” telling a specific tale?

Yes sometimes. There is a thread between the lyrical content of our songs I write with Metaphors a lot mixed with the street and personal experience. I love the way Ronnie James Dio, Jim Morrison, and Bon Scott wrote their lyrics. But at times a song is its own entity.

Can you describe the most intense or transformative studio session for “Run with the Raven”? Were there any tracks that morphed dramatically from their initial conception?

Oh yes from the beginning we started recording in 40-degree heat the studio was in an old brick furnace heritage listed as only two in the world.
Sometimes tempers or emotions got flared, and the Engineer and I had some long discussions put it that way.
My brother Big Tom held down a solid bass, the drummer was erratic at times but on the ball at other times giving it that unpredictable edge. I would say tracks like Her Sword of Tears, and I already mentioned Sheeba, but in Sword of Tears, we added a mellow section at the end.
The Mixer lost 20 or so guitar solos for the two songs so with a lot of frustration I attacked those two songs at the end. Rino as always kept a solid rhythm guitar behind everything. One of the last tracks – Holy Monastery came together in the studio from a jam-like situation. With Sheeba, Rino asked me to do a slide solo which bought it somewhere else.

• How do you envision Raven Black Night‘s sound evolving in the next future?

We already have an album waiting to record it is a combination of all our releases with some fresh directions and sounds I dare say production wise will be a little less raw than the Run With The Raven.

Raven Black Night – Run with the Raven

If you could have your listeners walk away with just one emotion or thought after listening to an entire Raven Black Night album, what would that be?

I would love them to feel like they have been on a journey and a feeling of sadisfaction at the end.

What do you think of the music scene in Australia? We’ve seen some great band names come out of there before, but I’m curious where Raven Black Night fits in.

The music scene is very diverse here being a large country it can be hard to get noticed. I would love for the mainstream scene radio/press to acknowledge or give more support to Australia Hard Rock/Metal; remember AC/DC started here!!!!! As for Raven Black Night fitting in, we walk alone!!!!!

Where Raven Black Night, stands regarding the underground scene?

I guess the underground scene has been very important to us here in Australia and Europe/America.
We did raise a few eyebrows being on Metal Blade but all good we want to reach a big audience to play to and record.

What is your personal preference in music; sticking with the old school tradition or trying out new and innovative approaches?

I think both. We must always respect the Old School for values and pioneering the music we love and also not be scared to walk the new ground and search for new possibilities for the music to thrive and survive in the future.

• What are your thoughts about your upcoming performance at the Old Grave Fest in Bucharest?

I and Rino can’t wait to play for and meet the Romanian Metal and Rock people.
We have our guest rhythm section and metal brothers from Athens with us that played Up The Hammers in 2019, Nikos Papakostas on bass [Convixion] and William Blardo on drums [Rattle Squad].


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