Interview: Ariel Eshcar

Dan McAvinchey: Ariel, you've had your CD "Extreme Supreme" out for a while, what kind of feedback have you been getting for it from fans? What do they like the most?

Ariel Eshcar: I get great feedback on "Extreme Supreme", I'm very satisfied with the responses. I think the album can be divided into three main styles: catchy neoclassical rock, progressive metal and fusion. Guitar players would be more impressed by complex tracks as "Galaxy Of Lost Spirits" and "Inside The Magenta Nebulae", the rest of the world, including musicians who play other instruments usually prefer tracks as "No Pain No Gain" and "Opus 1", which are catchier.

Dan McAvinchey: Tell us a little about the gear you used when you recorded "Extreme Supreme".

Ariel Eshcar: Guitar: Strat HM 1989 with EMG pickups; Preamp: ADA MP-1; Amp simulator: Joyo California Sound, two Marshall 1912 Cabs, Emma ReezaFratZits II pedal, Masrhall Valvstate 8008 Power amp.

Dan McAvinchey: What are you striving to achieve musically, particularly on your last album?

Ariel Eshcar: To have that cool '80s vibe that Sharpnel Guitarists had back then with a 2014 quality sound. I personally think that since everything is in HD today, it gets too clear sometimes, and then, the enchanted atmosphere is not there. It wasn't a simple thing to do, but I think I succeeded, because some guy tried to insult me by saying that it's as if I was an '80s guitarist who accidentally got into the wrong decade. I was very flattered.

Another thing that was important for me, was versatility, in all aspects. There are tracks that will shred you to death, and there are tracks that are more emotional. Some tracks are groovy.

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Dan McAvinchey: From a publicity and promotion standpoint, what do you find is working best for you at the moment?

Ariel Eshcar: Facebook and YouTube are definitely the best tools, especially when combined. Videos work about ten times better than audio, but I still use sites like Soundcloud and Reverbnation.

Dan McAvinchey: What do you now find to be the advantages and disadvantages of being an independent musician?

Ariel Eshcar: The advantage is that you're on your own, you decide where to go at any point without any limitations. You also know yourself the best, so you can represent yourself in the best way.

The disadvantage is that you're on your own so It's harder to promote yourself, and listeners might not take you as seriously as when you're a signed artist. I used to be signed in a record label few years ago, and I can say that I prefer being independent.
Unless it is a huge label of course.

Dan McAvinchey: When did you first get interested in guitar, and how did you learn and progress as a player?

Ariel Eshcar: I remember myself posing with a tennis racket in front of the mirror as a 7- or 8-year-old, but since my dad is a classical trumpet player, electric guitar seemed like a dream, because father never liked the electric guitar, so I didn't even try asking him to let me take guitar lessons.

When I was 10, I started taking trumpet lessons from my father, at the age of 14 my father suggested that I take some piano lessons in order to develop my ears, so I asked if I could take some classical guitar lessons instead, and he agreed. A few months later, my parents bought me an acoustic guitar, about 3 months later I went to a second hand guitar shop instead of going to school, and traded that guitar with an electric guitar and the rest in history.

Dan McAvinchey: Have you heard any new guitarists that have really caught your ear in the past couple of years?

Ariel Eshcar: There are some very cool new guitarists: Guy Elyahu, Eugene Berger, Tom Shapira.

Dan McAvinchey: Does it make sense to consider releasing physical CDs in the future in the age of digital media?

Ariel Eshcar: I still prefer physical CDs over digital. My album was also released in a CD format. There will always be few people who prefer that format, there are also collectors.

Dan McAvinchey: If you could do a once-off album project with any guitarist in the world, who would it be?

Ariel Eshcar: Greg Howe!

Dan McAvinchey: Finally, what are some of your plans for the future?

Ariel Eshcar: I'm working on a new album with Bishop of Hexen, and I will soon start writing some new material for my next album.

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Ariel Eshcar is a guitarist from Israel who delivers his original tracks with elements of fusion, neoclassical rock, shred and more. His latest solo album for 2014 is entitled "Extreme Supreme".

Dan McAvinchey contacted Eshcar recently, and they discussed his new album, as well as his early influences and promotion strategies for his music.