In 2011, the early foundations began to take hold for a new breed of progressive death metal. Event Horizon, based in Los Angeles, CA, is a project founded by guitarist/vocalist Max Sindermann. A classically trained guitarist, Sindermann began tinkering with the idea of building a bridge between metal and classical guitar. Taking inspiration from contemporary metal acts such as Opeth, Cynic, and Fleshgod Apocalypse, as well as classical composers like Sergei Rachmaninoff, Francisco Tarrega, and Igor Stravinsky, Sindermann began establishing a new musical formula that fused modern death metal with Romantic and Twentieth Century era classical music. Teaming up with Belgian vocalist Brandon Leigh Polaris, Event Horizon put out their first EP, The Emancipation of Dissonance in 2013.
“The name was taken from Arnold Schoenberg, who used it as a term to describe the budding atonal movement in the early twentieth century,” says Sindermann. “It established this new idea that dissonant harmony could exist in and of itself, without being bound by consonance. I thought this resonated very well with the metal genre, as it’s a brand of music that thrives best in sounds that make us uncomfortable.” Emancipation took hold as the foundation of what was to come. After taking on vocal duties himself, Sindermann began building a team of musicians to help further establish his vision. On guitar came David Cortes, a Spanish native with a background in classical guitar and orchestral composition. The bass role was filled by Vincent Medina, a classical and jazz bassist whose impressive virtuosity brought a new layer of dimension to the band’s sound. Lastly, the drum were filled in by Jacob Alves, who brought a technical foundation to the rhythm section with his background in progressive rock, metal, and jazz.
Event Horizon’s sound is marked by an array of musical influences and innovations that bring new flavours to the metal genre. But perhaps one of the most impressive aspects of their music is the new fingerstyle techniques developed to play the music. “I wanted to apply classical fingerstyle technique into the music as much as I could, but the more I began to do so, the more limiting I found it to be when I was stuck using a pick” says Sindermann. “I realized I would need total freedom to make it work, so I began developing new techniques to completely change the way I played my instrument.” Event Horizon’s live performance incorporates metal, classical, and flamenco style techniques that allow them to tackle their unique brand of technical music.
After several years of new challenges and growth, the now established union of Event Horizon are set to release their newest EP, A Nightmare of Symmetry. With the bombastic ferocity of metal and the lush, vibrant harmony of classical music, this new EP stands out as an exemplary model of what can be achieved through musical innovation. From the Spanish-inspired melodies of “The Light that Carries Me,” to the relentless aggression of “First World Phenomenon,” this new EP sets a whole new standard for progressive music that will shaken the foundations of the metal genre. Through ingenuity and creative exploration, Event Horizon prove themselves to be a unique new voice in progressive music.
Guitar/Vocals: Max Sindermann
MAXIMILIAN LEE SINDERMANN, guitarist, vocalist, and founding member of Event Horizon, is the musician and songwriter to whom the band plays brainchild. Trained in classical music, beginning with the occasional piano trifle from a very young age, Max went on to formally study Music Cal-State University Northridge.
Being initially drawn to the death metal genre, Max first conceived the beginnings of Event Horizon in the form of the band’s predecessor: a death metal band called Norazzah, which gained popularity in the Los Angeles area after winning a fiercely competitive battle of the bands at the Knitting Factory (Hollywood) in 2008. Despite Norazzah’s success, Max found himself slowly drifting away from the limitations of strict death metal music and leaning to newer, more adventurous ideas.
Having used his years in school to perfect a unique fusion of classical fingerpicking with the progressive death metal styles he was formerly drawn to as a musician, by the time of his graduation Max had already constructed and composed a full EP, The Emancipation of Dissonance, with an entirely new and original project all his own: Event Horizon.
Guitar: David Cortes
DAVID CORTES, a Spanish native, is a guitarist and composer currently based out of Los Angeles, CA. David studied guitar, piano, and composition at the conservatories of Albacete and Cuenca. Despite over ten years of classical training, David developed an interest in complex/progressive rock that made him choose the electric guitar as his instrument of choice.
David composed and premiered a couple of small classical pieces while living in Spain, as well as playing in small local bands during the late 80’s and early 90’s. While working to obtain degrees in Computer Science (BS and MSc), he developed an interest in computer music research, which started at the electro-acoustic research lab in Cuenca. This eventually culminated with his thesis for the MSc, a program that would use AI to improvise over a given MIDI file after analyzing it.
After moving to Los Angeles, David pursued further studies into composing music for video games, studying with Lennie Moore at UCLA. This brought a fresh and new perspective into his compositions, especially in orchestration and MIDI synthesis techniques. He has worked with Dan Morris (Smashing Pumpkins) as assistant sound engineer, as well as recorded medieval instruments for Pedro Jesus Gomez (teacher and international performer specializing in medieval lute instruments). He currently plays guitar and keyboards with Event Horizon, a progressive metal band in L.A.. He works as an R&D senior software engineer at DTS, Inc.
Bass: Vincent Medina
VINCENT MEDINA is an American jazz, rock, progressive, fusion bassist, multi-instrumentalist & composer who is best known as a fretless bass guitarist
Influenced by Jaco Pastorius, Percy Jones, and Jeff Berlin, Herbie Hancock, Zawinul, Bach, Stravinsky, Rachmaninoff and Ravel, Vincent has created a style uniquely his own by absorbing all music of interest and by adopting the cultural aspect of his city/environment here in Los Angeles, embracing its multi-cultural offerings, including Flamenco guitar. Unconditional love for music in all its forms with the caveat that the music move the soul, body, and mind.
Studied jazz, classical, music theory, performance, composition, upright and electric bass at CSUN including jazz improvisation, along with private study with former LA Philharmonic contrabass master, Arni Egilsson.
Drums: Jacob Alves
JACOB ALVES plays the drums. He also likes woodworking in his shop while drinking Coors Light and hanging out with his pit bull, Sasha. His favorite foods include pizza and desserts.
Vocals: Brandon Polaris