Daniel Flores

Mind’s Eye recently released their third album in A Gentleman’s Hurricane and it’s been revered as the band’s heaviest and best release to date. The man who had a lot to do with that is Mind’s Eye drummer Daniel Flores. Daniel managed to sit down with Metal Express Radio and go over his “design process” for this release, plus he provided an update about some of his exciting “solo” projects!

MER: Hello Daniel! Thanks for taking the time to speak with Metal Express Radio and your fans.

Daniel Flores: Thanks for having me! Believe me, it’s just a pure pleasure to be able to be here to talk to you and the fans.

MER: The new release A Gentleman’s Hurricane is a bona fide “concept album.” Was this the first concept album you’ve been involved with?

Daniel: No not really. The last album Walking on H20 was also a concept album, but it was not taken to the lengths that we have taken with this one. I have also been involved in other albums (as a session drummer), but nothing I could get my head into as much as on our own stuff.

MER: Where did the concept idea and story for A Gentleman’s Hurricane come from?

Daniel: Well, it’s from different films and books that I have read, from my own research and interest in the occult and secret societies. Most came out of Internet research and facts of 11 of the 12 murders involved in the story.

MER: Is it safe to assume that the story was either written partially or fully before writing the music and the lyrics?

Daniel: Yeah, sure, it’s impossible to write something like this without doing research and having script written down first. It helps a lot when the actual music is supposed to lift the story. Supporting it all, we also have Mattias Norén doing pictures and scenes taken from the story.

MER: Whose idea was it to include a comic book? How did this idea evolve?

Daniel: Mine actually … I’m the guy to throw stones at, I’m afraid. You know I’m just so fed up with the usual package: CD meets hands and they live happily ever after! I wanted to add more spice to that format and the visualization of the story is a good way to keep listeners put. What we fight for is to keep the listeners from sitting up and pushing the “next button” … of course, all people have remote controls these days, but you know what I’m talking about. The hard part is to sync all details while recording and making the booklet.

MER: When you were in the process of writing the music to the story, how did you make decisions like deciding on what pieces of the story to tell musically and which to leave for the comic book?

Daniel: Well, that’s my secret, you know! HAHAHAHA! Actually, that was a lot of work and full concentration on the concept. As I have a full hard drive with papers and linear notes plus biographies of all the victims, for me it was easier to decide these matters. Everything has to be in sync with each other. I actually came up with a good day-to-day routine, which involved me, the artwork and DVD guys to talk with each other (synchronizing our watches) like an Internet meeting so to speak. I guess as a project leader, people were pretty satisfied even if it was messed up a little in the end, but I learned a lot during this period and I would probably be better at it next time when I have a higher mountain to climb.

MER: You wrote the music, how about the lyrics for the music tracks?

Daniel: Me, myself and I! HAHAHA! Well, I have issues you know and I needed to get them out on paper… (Actually that’s a joke). The other guys are really talented writers too but as I already had everything worked out and sold the idea to them, they just went along and danced trough the whole thing. I have the energy to do many things at the same time and I guess it was important to me that it was done properly and I have always believed in the saying: “if you don’t take care of it, no one else will”

MER: How did you involve or get buy-in from Andreas and Johan when conveying your musical ideas for this release?

Daniel: I had a meeting with all the people involved, in Stockholm, and I converted six guys. I know for a fact that when they read my story and papers they thought I was crazy… because it looked so expensive but when I told them the way we could make it they where all sold! I remember Johan saying: “Man, even Queensrÿche would have trouble doing this one”, then I said: “Yeah, I know man, but trust me on this one, it can be done”. Even if the research and story writing was hard, you can imagine how the calculations with a small budget had to be done, I don’t know how I managed to make this all fit within the budget. I’m selling dreams to people and at that point I sold them my dream.

MER: How does the packaging of the comic book work for distributors like Is it a full-sized comic book? ,p> Daniel: I guess!? I really don’t know but there have been no complaints yet, at least as far as I know. The booklet is in the DVD size so that’s why we choose the DVD package.

MER: How did graphic artist Mattias Norén get involved in doing the album artwork as well as the comic book?

Daniel: Another wild decision of mine. I had told him about my vision over the phone and he was interested but not sold. That’s why I bought him a ticket to Stockholm and I invited him to the meeting. Like a normal, sane guy he is he was actually skeptical about the whole damn thing. I guess today he has changed his mind. The ideas I had where realistic and as long as they trusted me things where ok and as long as the phone contacts where used, we had no problem in taking home this one. I was right!

MER: Were any pieces of the story fleshed out during the comic book creation phase?

Daniel: Yeah, some, like a story about when Adam goes to Arabia… that story was too political and I flushed it but Mattias never heard about it. Actually Mattias helped out a lot in how to visualize some of the weird ideas I had. Some I had to rewrite the lyrics for and so on but as you said, these were minor details in an otherwise pretty big picture.

MER: How did the duet with Crucified Barbara’s singer Mia Coldheart come about and how was she chosen?

Daniel: Mia during the day is the singer of the great Metal band CRUCIFIED BARBARA and they used to rehearse in the room next to my old studio in “Sheepvalley Studios”. I have known the girls for a long time and we are good friends. But it was when I recorded their first EP that I discovered MIA’s amazing talent. She was doing background vocals (back then they had another lead singer) and she totally blew me away. I said to my self, SHIT MAN, this girl has more going on than just looks (sorry Mia but I mean well). Such a talented girl and such a pretty face, that can’t go wrong. And when I wrote “The Hour Of Need” and I felt that this was the perfect opportunity to make good music with her and of course for her to make a buck or two, so in the end it’s a WIN WIN situation for us both.

MER: What was the most challenging or difficult role in putting this end-to-end concept album together?

Daniel: OH YEAH! You can say that again. I’m just a drummer you know but I have a great driving force and lots of talented people around me and that helped a lot. The really hard part was to keep everyone satisfied while doing my ideas and I have my ways you know… sort of like MIND CONTROL buahhhhhhaahaa!

No seriously, it’s all about being honest and to gain trust within the person you are and respect their talents while they are creating. I have learned to “kill my own darling” and I’m never married to the idea of my own vision. Of course, if they take my idea to a higher level I have to take a step back and try to see what picture they are trying to create or even what do they want to say with their own voice, sometimes its really good and sometimes not. As long as it’s within the regions of good, I’m ok with it.

MER: Will Mind’s Eye do another concept album and if so would you do anything differently?

Daniel: Don’t know really. I have some weird ideas in my head right now but I don’t want to think about it until it’s really time. I’m in great need of a long vacation but I still have lots of work to finish before we can go back into the studio. Johan will actually handle most of the musical concept and I will take time to write down my thoughts as soon as humanly possible.

Different is not a bad word to use but I’d rather use the word “develop” as in this case I want to develop the “concept” of concept writing and I think I have just the right amount of craziness to pull it off.

MER: Is there any “snowball’s chance in hell” of getting a theatrical show for A Gentleman’s Hurricane onto the road?

Daniel: Snowball’s change in hell!!!??? HAHAHAHA! That’s funny man. Well, yeah. Next year we will actually play a few live gigs here and there. Mostly around Europe I guess, so plans are being made, don’t worry we will get you a fix! HA HA HA! Therion will take a huge deserved break next year and that’s our chance to make our move.

MER: Why we’ve got your attention, you’re a man of many projects. Is there anything you can tell your fans about any other projects you’re involved in?

Daniel: Thanks for asking. Well, I’m doing some cool albums right now and I will be involved in more soon… most of them can’t be revealed yet as nothing is signed. But I’m part of the band “The Codex” with Mark Boals on vocals and Magnus Karlsson on guitars so that’s a huge honor for me as I’m a fan of both these guys.

I’m also recording the drums for the new “Evil Masquerade“ album, it’s really fun, and then I will be doing some smaller sessions. I also have a new band called BLACK CANDLE WEDDING. This band is maybe the most commercial stuff I have ever been involved with but it’s so much fun and the new singer involved is such an amazing talent it’s incredible, her name is “Anagelica Rylin”, keep an eye open for her. I’m producing that one and we are currently searching for a deal to start the recording this winter.

MER: In closing, any last words for your fans?

Daniel: Thanks again for having me on this amazing site! Last time I was here I did a guest show for you guys… maybe not my heaviest hour but still it was fun and would love to do another one with our bass player involved as his taste is better fitting with your concept.

Thanks guys! Metal Express Radio and all the fans truly rule!

MER: Daniel, thanks for your time and congratulations on the new release!

Daniel: THANKS again, and I appreciate the time and effort Metal Express Radio have given me and the band, for that we are truly in debt to you. I wish you a healthy and steady beer-drinking upcoming year! Take care! Cheers!


  • Scott Jeslis

    Scott is one of the partners at Metal Express Radio. He handles a lot of Metal Express Radio's public relations, screening of new music and radio scheduling. On occasion, he also does reviews and interviews. He has been a proud member of the Metal Express Radio crew since 2004.

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