FIERCE DEITY – The Path
Feeling, melody and energy
are only three of the many synonyms you can connect with the power metal of the solo artist Jonathon Barwick alias FIERCE DEITY (Facebook ) from Australia. Influences of IRON MAIDEN, BLIND GUARDIAN and QUEEN can be found in his songs in one way or another. After some time he has now brought his big project called THE PATH to a furious end with his current song „A Ballad Of Heartbreak And Dispair“. An epic song that reveals everything the metal rock heart desires. When you hear this song, you have to love it! But more about that later.
This project has put Jonathon through a very difficult phase of his life. Once again, music has helped to strengthen a person’s soul and thus defy the adversities of life. I wanted to learn more about this remarkable man from the other side of the world and I talked to him about his music and life. A very interesting experience, not only musically. Have fun on the journey, for which you should take your time. Is nothing to „just fly over it“! Because there is much to read, but also to hear!
MH: Hi Jonathon! Let´s talk about you, your story and your music-project. Tell us something personal. Where are you coming from? What is your hometown?
JB: Hey Dirk, thank you for having me! I live in the small town of Hobart (Wikipedia ) in the small state of Tasmania in the gigantic country of Australia. I like it here – it’s very quiet and the wilderness is very pretty!
Meaning of music
MH: What is your relationship to music?
JB: Great question! Music has without a doubt shaped my entire life. The first music I can remember falling in love with was The Beatles and The Blues Brothers. I was 4 years old and demanded to be dressed in a suit all the time – my parents managed to fool me into thinking just a jacket made a “suit” so I was happy. My dad played guitar so there was always one around but I’m left-handed so I couldn’t play them – I just held them in front of the mirror and that was enough for a while. Music has always been the biggest source of joy in my life and I turn to it in the good times and bad.
Standing on its own
MH: Is it true that you are a solo artist and play all the instruments yourself?
JB: Yes, at the moment it’s just me. I’ve had some guests do some stuff – Psycroptic’s Joe Haley played a solo on ‘When My Lantern Fails” and Harlott’s Andrew Hudson is singing with me on ‘A Ballad of Heartbreak and Despair’. I program the drums using EZDrummer 2 and arrange the keys with a MIDI controller. The technology now is amazing – I can do all this from home.
MH: Is it a hobby or do you make your living with music?
JB: I am about to leave my job to build it into a living. Therefore I saved enough money to survive for 6 months and I’m going to use that time to properly connect with fans and provide value through Patreon, Twitch and Bandcamp. I need to spend this point of my life making music or my mental health will suffer now and later on. I know who I am and what I want to do with my life.
MH: MH: What does the name FIERCE DEITY stand for?
JB: To me it means incorruptible positive energy. I first came across the name 20 years ago in the (best) Zelda game ‘Majora’s Mask’ and always loved it. There’s instances of fierce deities across religious lore too – a fierce deity is one who crushes anything in his/her path to achieve enlightenment. This, at times, can do more damage than good so that fits my persona well!
MH: You have delivered 5 songs: „The Path“, „Hearing Whispers“, „When My Lantern Fails“, „The Holy Fire“ and „A Ballad Of Heartbreak And Despair“.All single covers have the same optical style with the same man in different situations. Do the songs belong to one whole story?
JB: Indeed! I call him ‘The Traveller’. The Songs belong to one story! I tried to make them stand alone as I released them one by one but when they are put together they form a bigger picture.
MH: Why do the covers look like a scene from a computer game in the early 90ies?
JB: The simple answer is because the songs are all in some way inspired by a moment from my favourite games! The long answer is because these songs are FIERCE DEITY in its early stages – I plan to evolve the artwork much like computer game artwork evolved!
MH: What is the story about? And what inspired you to the project?
JB: Each song came from a different point in a journey of grief. At 27 years old (2017) I realised I was completely lost in life. I was a classic case of learned helplessness. I wrote these songs during a period of sorting myself out.
MH: Can you tell us a bit about the content of each song?
FIERCE DEITY: „The Path“
is realising I’m all alone and no-one is coming to save me. There is great power in knowing that – people fear being alone and they panic but if you really embrace solitude you find there is REAL power in it. I used the love story of Geralt & Yennefer from The Witcher as lore and put my own story in.
FIERCE DEITY: „Hearing Whispers“
is the battle against unrelenting depression. You’ve gotta battle really hard against the loud voices that tell you to lay down and focus on that tiny whisper that says “try again”. I used „Dark Souls“ language because the game is a perfect example of how a few moments of euphoric joy amongst hours and hours of pain make an experience wonderful and memorable.
FIERCE DEITY: „When My Lantern Fails“
is straight up faith and religion. I like the visual idea of the mind being a forest. If you arm yourself with faith you don’t lose yourself when things go wrong. I wrote this song for all my friends – I love them all very much and am always missing them.
FIERCE DEITY: „The Holy Fire“
is the opposite side of the religious coin. Humans have always loved a good old witch hunt and we still do! On my journey of grief I read Jordan Peterson’s ‘12 Rules For Life’ twice and realised I have been guilty of passing blame in instances I had no right to. Jordan is too intellectual for his own good at times and the message of his book is grossly misinterpreted by both his fans AND his detractors… sounds familiar, right? In a nutshell, ‘The Holy Fire’ is me observing my past self putting the torch to others and forcing my own narrative on observers.
FIERCE DEITY: „A Ballad of Heartbreak & Despair“
came from a pit of anxiety in which I didn’t sleep for 3 days. Each bell in the song represents the sun rising on those 3 mornings. Anxiety is a fucking monster. I’m so glad the response to this song has been great – lots of people have commented on the heart & conviction it is performed with. The message in it ‘If I relapse once more, don’t mourn for me” is my declaration to the world that if I choose to become a deadbeat again don’t feel sorry for me.
End=Start from new?
MH: Well, this project is finished. Do you have other projects at the moment?
JB: I write songs in all other styles too – I have a collection of singer/songwriter type stuff that I just do under ‘Jonathon Barwick’ but I have no designs on releasing it.
MH: What are your plans for the future?
JB: Für 2021 werfe ich mein ganzes Leben darauf fokussieren, Musik zu machen und eine Gemeinschaft um sie herum aufzubauen.
MH: Is there perhaps a complete album in the works?
JB: I definitely do! I’m working on a 3 track project code named ‘PWC’ that is going great! The artwork is amazing! I got in touch with an artist I love and he was all for a collaboration so that’ll all get announced soon! I’m also working on an album that I’m just calling ‘Fierce Deity 1’ at this point – all just bare bones ideas though.
MH: If so, what will it act on and what can listeners expect?
JB: ‘PWC’ is big stoner grooves packed with power metal melody! 3 tracks that total at about 30 minutes of music! People can watch me recording it live on Twitch in the new year!
Everything has an ending,
so this report. I can only warmly recommend this song collection to every metal fan who likes intelligent old-school songs with lots of variations. FIERCE DEITY brings you classic (Stoner-) Metal on a high level. You will find many elements of very famous bands. The songs are all super arranged and have their own character. The last song „Ballad Of Heartbreak & Despair“ is an absolute dream. I could give 11 out of 10 points for this song. So you can see that even the underground has a lot to offer and delivers first-class music. You can listen and download all the songs individually via Bandcamp (Link ). If you don’t use this opportunity, it’s your own fault!
The underground lives
and offers like FIERCE DEITY real tremendous treasures. So if you don’t want to miss anything from all areas of the metal world, subscribe to our free Newsletter or follow us on Facebook. That way you’ll always be up to date about everything from the underground to the big boys. If you like to watch pictures, Instagram is the right place for you and our YouTube Channel offers you interviews, unboxings and some documentaries.
- Press B&W: FIERCE DEITY (Jonathon Barwik)
- The Path Cover+Infos-4-: Cover+Tracklist FIERCE DEITY //The rest--> PIXABAY//Picture Background-->Syaibatul Hamdi //Amboss-->Momentmal auf// Background MH-->PRAIRAT FHUNTA
- Press Colour-skaliert: FIERCE DEITY (Jonathon Barwik)