Interview with Margarita Monet (Edge Of Paradise)

Edge Of Paradise is a band out of Los Angeles that just formed in 2011, and quickly knocked out a debut album entitled The Mask, which includes 9 songs (3 instrumentals and 6 vocal tracks). As a female-fronted Metal band, their music has been described as Traditional-based Metal with a few Thrash, Death, and Industrial elements. Check out more about the band at Margarita Monet (MM), vocalist, took time out to talk with Metal Express Radio (MER) about the whirlwind of events that have come together for the band thus far in their rather short history …

MER: Since you’re rather new to the music scene, please start out by letting readers know a little about your musical background …

MM: Well, I was born and initially grew up in Russia, and starting at the age of about 4, I began playing piano and had lessons for about an hour 3 times a week. Originally I was trained to play Classical music, and I didn’t even hear Rock music until I was about 11. We ended up moving to the states and lived in Texas, and one day I heard my dad playing Led Zeppelin on the guitar, and I said, “What’s that?” I suppose that’s when I first discovered Rock ‘n’ Roll. I ended up going to a Performing Arts High School and started playing piano at a much higher level along with acting and singing. Later I went to New York to focus on acting, and eventually I joined a cover band out there. I decided to move to Los Angeles to pursue acting opportunities, and I ran into a producer who asked me to sing on a song. Then I met Dave Bates who was putting together a band, and that seemed to work well and became Edge Of Paradise. I actually have only been into Metal for about a year or so, I suppose.

MER: The band and your first album seemed to come together with lightning speed by today’s standards … how did you go from becoming a band to releasing a debut album so quickly?

MM: Dave already had material written and wanted a singer. When I sang for him, he asked me to join him to create a band, and everything started falling into place quickly. We played a few gigs and started recording songs right away. We decided to release the album quickly too to start seeing how far we can take this band … so with that said, we kind of wanted to form an Edge Of Paradise sound and use The Mask as a stepping stone. Right now we’re doing work for this band pretty much 24/7.

MER: You mentioned you “wanted to form an Edge Of Paradise sound” … how would describe your musical style and sound?

MM: We wanted to start with “Metal” and add elements to the sound that were a bit unique. Since we’re female-fronted, that immediately added uniqueness, especially since we didn’t want to take a Gothic or Operatic approach. We used some keyboards to add fullness and bass tones to our music … sort of like Rob Zombie … I suppose that added an Industrial Metal feel to our sound.

MER: When you step up to the microphone, what do you “feel” and what is your “attitude”?

MM: When I sing I try to bring out the emotions of the song as best I can. I approach each song aggressively … which is not uncommon for Metal. Even with ballads, I try to approach them aggressively to add an element of power to that type of song. I think my acting background helps me too … when I try to bring out the meaning behind each word of each song, my voice more or less just adjusts itself to fit the underlying emotions.

MER: For The Mask, you already mentioned that the material was largely written by Dave. Are you collaborating now on new material? If so, what is your role in the writing process?

MM: Yes, we’ve already started writing new songs, and it’s generally been the both of us along with Ryan Jones providing input in all areas. We’re pretty excited about what we’re able to come up with when we all work together.

MER: What do you see happening with Edge Of Paradise in the next year?

MM: By the end of 2011, we’ll release another single and we’re going to try to play live as much as possible. For 2012, we’re already trying to put together touring plans in the states, and then hopefully extend that to Canada and parts of Europe. We’re excited about Europe especially, because the fans there seem to be more open-minded to give unique Metal bands a chance.

MER: In America, certainly your band is going to be viewed as “different” … how does a band like Edge Of Paradise make a name for itself and garner interest from record labels and tour promoters?

MM: It’s definitely a tough market, but so far many people have been open to us and curious since we’re female-fronted. We’re lucky to have paired up with a good Publicist … I actually don’t know how bands can promote themselves without outside help. I suppose too since our music is influenced by the founding fathers of Metal, such as Black Sabbath and Iron Maiden, people hear those influences in our music and it grabs their attention. We’re a new band, so of course we don’t fully know how the country will accept us in the long run … but the initial response has been very encouraging.

MER: Is there any final message you’d like to convey to MER readers or to your fans out there throughout the world?

MM: We’re very happy to be doing what we’re doing, and I want to thank everyone out there for checking us out. Edge Of Paradise is something “different” and we’ll be working to bring our music to you out the road very soon.


  • Dan Skiba

    Dan is a former partner at Metal Express Radio, and also served as a reviewer, photographer and interviewer on occasions. Based out of Indianapolis, USA he was first turned on to Hard Rock music in the mid-1970s when he purchased Deep Purple's Machine Head as his first album. He was immediately enthralled with the powerful guitar sound and pronounced drumbeat, and had to get more! His collection quickly expanded to include as many of Heavy Rock bands of the time that he could get his hands on, such as Ted Nugent, Judas Priest, and Black Sabbath, to name just a few.

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