Friday, July 18, 2008

Heavy Metal Monk

At first glance, Cesare Bonizzi looks like the archetypal Capuchin monk - round-faced, stout, with twinkling eyes and a long flowing white beard. But beneath his robes beats a heart of metal.

Brother Cesare is the lead singer in a heavy metal band which has just released its second album. A former missionary in the Ivory Coast, he lives in a small friary in the Milan hinterland.

The 62-year-old monk's love affair with heavy metal began when he attended a Metallica concert some 15 years ago.

"I was overwhelmed and amazed by the sheer energy of it" he says.

Hard rock and heavy metal have, over the years, been criticised as the work of the devil. Its a claim which Brother Cesare, also known as Brother Metal, says is nonsense.

He started playing and recording cassettes, firstly with "lighter" metal music, but gradually he realised that what really moved him was the hard core.

The members of his band were at first sceptical at the idea of teaming up with a Capuchin monk but their doubts soon evaporated.

"Five minutes after meeting Brother Cesare I decided to go ahead, because he manages to convey so much energy, that other musicians and youngsters often don't manage to express," lead guitarist, Cesare Zanotti, told Reuters.

There's a BBC Video HERE

1 comment:

Jeremy said...

What can I say - kick fuckin ass!