Moonshade – Interview

Interview with Ricardo Pereira (lead singer of Moonshade) and Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (

PD:  How would you describe yourself or your band as an artist?

RP: As a band, Moonshade is simply raw artistic expression mixed with powerful messages designed to elevate and inspire you, to make you learn, to make you question things you never questioned before, or, if nothing else, to give you a good time and make you forget whatever you’re dealing with, even if for a moment. I know that sounds cliché, but it’s really that simple: we write some riffs we think sound cool, jumble them together with whatever we have to say, and work on it until we are sure it’s something that will inspire other people as much as our favourite artists inspire us. Then we dilapidate it some more, until we see the result as a worthy legacy.


PD: Can you tell us briefly about your background – i.e. where you’re from, how you came to make music, etc.

RP: Of course, I’m a musician, we love talking about ourselves. I’m from Oporto, Portugal, as is the rest of the band. Professionally, I’m on the third year of my PhD in biological sciences, but music has always been there as more than a hobby. I’ve always wanted to contribute to the world with both science and art, you know, try and make the world a bit better than how I found it. I started listening to punk, rock and metal at about 11, I think, then came hip hop. Started out playing guitar in punk bands, then tried playing the bass in a thrash metal band that never saw the light of day, but it was there where our drummer asked me to learn guttural vocals. Apparently I have a knack for it, something which can’t be said for guitar and bass, so taking the mic was actually a win-win situation for both me and string instruments alike.


PD: Who and what inspires you to make music, both in terms of musical and other influences? What do you like to write about in your songs?

RP: Usually Moonshade’s songs are essentially done when I start writing. I like to let the song speak, and then serve it, lyrically. The emotions are already there, I’m just the middle man who chooses a theme that matches those emotions, and the theme can be anything. Literature is where I get most of my inspiration for writing, as well as hip hop for rhyme schemes and vocal metrics, and, of course, extreme (and mostly modern) metal for vocals. I know the last two might sound sinful to many metalheads, but in my defense just know that, from the bottom of my heart, I don’t care.


PD: What are your aspirations as an artist?

RP: Within the framework of my aesthetic ideal, I just want make amazing art that provides others with the same pleasure other amazing art gives me, and show it to as many people as possible.


PD: What is the proudest moment in your music career so far?

RP: Listening to the final version of our upcoming album for the first time. ‘As We Set The Skies Ablaze’ is, by far, the best thing we ever did. Can’t wait for July 22nd so we can show it to everyone!


PD: Promoting one’s music is such a challenge these days, especially with so many new artists emerging from bedrooms in the day of the home studio. How is that going?

RP: I’m the one in charge of promotion on Moonshade, but get tons of help from my bandmates, and also from PR companies – shout out to Metal Devastation and Against PR. Also, we are incredibly fortunate to have Sofía Hernandez, as our main person in charge of media, photos, and overall content provider. She’s basically our sixth band member.

It takes a ton of hard work and dedication, and most underground bands really don’t know and don’t care about it, they still believe fairy tales about a label A&R magically finding them, signing them to a major, and living happily ever after. I don’t really know much about the business, but I know this – you need music that’s catchy, original, and incredibly well produced, and on top of that, you need to be active and entertaining on social media, while also playing live as much as possible. It’s exhausting, but it is what it is, one either plays the game or leaves, and if one has the time and energy to bitch about it, one also has the time and energy to do it.


PD: And how do you book and promote your live shows and tours? Any performances coming up?

RP: For 2022 we have 4 shows booked on our home country, including two major festivals such as Laurus Nobilis where we will share the stage with the likes of At The Gates, on July 22nd. Exactly the day when our album drops.


PD: What do you think about downloading music online? What about streaming sites like Spotify?

RP: Nowadays, downloading music is just being an asshole for no reason. At least streaming pays something, even if very little, but the true value of it comes from users playing and replaying your music, and adding it to playlists, which induces the algorithms to show your music to more people, which gives you hype and earns you new fans. Nowadays, streaming is the number one metric for booking and signing bands, so if you just download the music, you’re not contributing towards that metric, or with money for the band, you’re just being a parasite. Of course it’s better if you buy our music in CD format or vinyl format, but downloading music? At least buy a goddamn t-shirt.


PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?

RP: My Chemical Romance’s ‘Welcome To The Black Parade’.


PD: Is there anything you don’t like about the music industry, which you would change if you could?

RP: The industry responds to popular demand, meaning that the scene and how people consume music shapes the industry. The only thing that really annoys me is how we normalize toxic behaviour and allows it to thrive because it feels edgy, and we’re talking about things ranging from substance abuse to whatever seedy stuff you can think of. Nothing against substances, I’m actually a fan of some, but I sense an overarching pseudo-rockstar miasma surrounding the metal scene, and that creates unprofessional, unstable people that are virtually impossible to work with, especially at the underground level. There’s nothing rebellious about being ignorant or an asshole, that’s actually pretty mainstream.


PD: So, what are you working on at the moment?

RP: At the moment we are solely focusing on promoting our upcoming album, ?As We Set The Skies Ablaze’, to be released on July 22nd. This includes the promotion and release of three other singles before the album release date, the first of which will be released on early June. We are also planning out our shows for this year and the next, looking into some international performances, tons of stuff. Expect a barrage of news from the Moonshade camp.


PD: Where can we learn more about you and buy your music/merch online?

RP: That’s easy! Join us at . Thank you so much for this interview, as well as everyone who took the time to read it. Cheers!

Moonshade links:
Band/Artist location – Porto Portugal
Website – Facebook – Bandcamp – Merch – 
Twitter – Instagram – Apple – Spotify – Amazon – Deezer – Fanlink – Last Fm
Check our page for Moonshade