From: Ez-zahra, Tunisia
Last Known Status: Active
Myrath (which means Legacy) is a Metal band from Tunis-Tunisia, a small country well known for its resort areas on the Mediterranean coast but certainly not for its metal bands, yet in just few years what started out as a teenager cover band became a relatively well known and respected band by the international Prog-Power Metal community.
It all started in early 2001, when guitarist Malek Ben Arbia (who was just 13 years old at the time) and two of his childhood friends, Fahmi Chakroun (drums) and Oualid Issaoui (guitar) living in the same neighbourhood in Ez-Zahra (suburbs of Tunis-Tunisia) formed a cover band which they named Xtazy. The lineup was shortly after completed by Zaher Ben Hamoudia (Bass) and Tarek Idouani (vocals).
For the first two years the band played in numerous local gigs, mainly DEATH covers, then for the following two years exclusively SYMPHONY X covers, when Elyes Bouchoucha (keyboards and vocals), who just graduated from Tunis conservatory, joined the band in 2003.
After four (4) years of playing covers, the band gained enough experience to start writing its own music. Thus in March 2005 they released (in Tunisia only) "double face", a self produced album with a lineup which included new drummer Saief Louhibi (who joined the band in the summer of 2004). Even though "double face" was more of a demo with an obvious Symphony X influence it did however show very encouraging signs of composing skills especially that it was the first recording experience of a band consisting of students still in their teen years.
In March 24th 2006 the band opened for ROBERT PLANT and ADAGIO in a concert held in Carthage roman amphitheater and attended by about 7OOO metal/rock fans. That day they met Adagios keyboard player Kevin Codfert who later became the band producer and sound engineer.
With the valuable support of Kevin, the addition (in September 2006) of experienced Bass player Anis Jouini and the improved composing and playing skills of guitarist Malek Ben Arbia, who graduated (in July 2006) from the prestigious French guitar school Music academy international (M.A.I.), the band became more ambitious in pursuing an international career.
To this respect they started by changing the band name from Xtazy to MYRATH then in December 2006 they recorded the album "Hope" with Kevin Codfert as sound engineer and producer.
This album was a turning point in Myrath carrier as the band was signed by the French label Brennus-Music, who released "Hope" worldwide in September 2007.
"Hope" was praised by the media in numerous reviews by well known webzines and magazines and was even voted third best album of the year by two major US webzines and album of the week by several webzines and major metal radio stations.
Most critics predicted a bright future for the band as summarized by one of them who wrote "Myrath will probably be the first band from Maghreb which will have a famous international career. This album is one of the best releases of Progressive Metal that I had the chance to listen to lately. Thumb up to Myrath for this exceptional release… this band will become really big and famous you'll see, I will not be wrong".
The success of HOPE contributed to improving the notoriety of Myrath, and paved the way for prestigious European festivals (such as METAL ROCK FESTIVAL - Norway and PROGPOWER-EU – The Netherlands) to include the band in the lineup of their 2008 edition. Thus on May 2nd 2008 Myrath made an impressive debut live performance outside Tunisia in PROGSUD Festival (Marseille – France) with talented singer Zaher Zorgati (who joined the band in June 2007) as front man.
The follow up album ‘’DESERT CALL’’ which was officially released on January 25th 2010 in Europe by the major French labels XIII BIS RECORDS (Sony distribution) and in the rest of the world by the prestigious American Label Nightmare Records was a second turning point in Myrath carrier in terms of improved notoriety and increase of its fan base as well as a wider interest of the media and promoters.
DESERT CALL, which offers a new style of Progressive Power Metal consisting of a mix between traditional Tunisian music and metal enhanced by a balanced Arabian and western orchestration was praised by the media in numerous well known European and American webzines and magazines and had a huge success worldwide which increased considerably the band notoriety and fan base. the album was even voted in the top 1O albums of 2010 by several webzines.