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1996-


Biography

The Skylark project started in 1994 following an idea of his leader Eddy Antonini who wanted to create a band where his favourite musical tastes, neo-classic and power metal, could combine together in an open-minded mix.
After having chosen some of the most able musicians from the northern Italian underground scene ( Fabio Dozzo- Voice, Roberto "Brodo" Potenti- Bass, Nico Tordini- Guitar and Federico Ria- Drums )

Eddy started to write the material that some months later, in Spring 1995, would appear in the first self-produced CD "The Horizon and the Storm". This opera attracted the attention of some of the most famous metal magazines in Italy ( Flash 85/100, Metal Shock 4/5...) and in Germany ( Rock Hard 8,5/10...) and of the Japanese audience, so that the independent label Underground Symphony decided to offer a contract to the band. After the maxi-CD "Waiting for the Princess..." out in November 1996 including a cover of W.A. Mozart (Eine Kleine NachtMusik K525) the next step, the full-length concept album "Dragon's Secrets" ( April 1997 ), gave Skylark the chance to join the real heavy metal world. The album got excellent reviews ( Flash 100/100, Metal Shock 5/5, Rock Hard 9/10....) and selling and everybody knows that Eddy keeps on considering these composition among the best he has ever written up to now. In May 1997 Skylark opened the Milan concert for the Danish band ROYAL HUNT and, after a quick tour in Italy, they took a period-off.

This was the right moment for Eddy to prepare his first solo-project "When Water Became Ice" that would be published in March 1998 always under Underground Symphony. This record is very close to Skylark music but, obviously, a little bit more keyboards-oriented, and many musicians such as Olaf Thorsen and Folco Orlandini, besides the others Skylark members, play in. Anyway, in this period, Eddy found the right time to lead Skylark on the stage of "Italian Gods of Metal" in Milan where more than 1000 kids seemed to appreciate the show a lot. In this concert the band presented his new guitar player Fabrizio "Pota" Romani. Three months later the album "Dragon's Secrets" was printed in Japan by Meldac while the band opened in Bergamo for the Portuguese Star Moonspell.
After this concert Eddy and his Skylark started to write and arrange the double concept "The Divine Gates", a fantasy story that was nothing more than the prelude of "Dragon's Secrets" (!!!), telling about the same eternal fight between Good and Evil. The first chapter "Gate of Hell" came out in September 1999 for Underground Symphony, after Eddy played as a special guest in a progressive Italian band called Time Machine in their tour supporting Angra in Greece and Italy, besides the Gods of Metal of the June 2000 in Milan.

"Gate of Hell", where appeared some guests like the super-technical guitar player Vic Mazzoni or the wonderful voice of Rob Tyrant, pushed Skylark ahead even in countries such as Chile, Taiwan or Spain, where Skylark, in July 2000, opened the first edition of "Rock Machina" playing an exiting and powerful concert (with the new drummer Carlos who received many credits from the audience) on the same stage of Running Wild, Virgin Steele, Edguy and Labyrinth. About 10.000 copies of that record were sold in a little time and new distribution deals with some of the most famous distributors such as Metal Blade, SPV, NTS-Wagram, Bertus...were signed.

In November 2000 the second part "Gate of Heaven" was published, becoming quickly the best seller of the band while media and international press put Skylark among the master of the power metal scene. Its long suite "Lady of the Sky" entered immediately the live set list and, above all, the heart of the fans who, really in love with this long Saga, immediately asked Eddy for the Final Chapter to discover the last adventures of Princess of the Snow and White Warrior; that's probably why less than one year later, while most of people were waiting a long live activity instead, "Princess' Day" was out, revealing a new soul of the band, really fast and speed, always melodic and even more direct.
In spite of a real crisis of the CD marketing and a cold reaction of the press, "Princess'..." confirmed the good results of the previous works and became the final key to conquer the oriental scene. The labels Hot Rockin' (Japan), Pony Canyon (South Korea), Magnum Music (Taiwan) licensed this record together with both part of "Divine Gates" and, in Taiwan and Japan, Eddy's solo is printed too.

So, it's the time for a long coming-back on the live stages, where the hottest point were the Festival Italian attack, a three-gigs Italian tour with Labyrinth, Domine and some other supporting bands (Spring 2002), the appearance in the bill of the Headbangers festival next to Hamburg (June 2002) and an amazing Japan tour in April 2003 when Skylark played as Headliners two powerful and long awaited concerts in Osaka and Tokyo.

Is this the moment for a break? Not at all, it's time for Skylark to spread its "Wings", a brave challenge that came out in May 2004 under their Italian label Scarlet Records and under Soundholic in Japan where good reviews were published on local press on the most famous metal magazines Burrn! (80/100) and Young Guitar. During the Summer Wings was also printed by Nems in Argentina, Evolution in South Korea and Rock Empire in Taiwan. This album, that according to Eddy seemed to be "the most dynamic and introspective, full of elements prog, hard rock, metal, connected to our classic style" also showed the voice of the new female singer Kiara in the classic of Def Leppard "When Love and Hate Collide" revisited in a sweet piano-orchestral version. Kiara joined the band on stage in the Italian Tour conceived like a warm up for the hottest point of 2004, the Metal Kingdom festival in Japan. The band led these two shows, as usual in Tokyo and Osaka supported by the Taiwanese Seraphim and by the Japanese Blood Stain Child. This second Japanese tour was another great success for SKYLARK, especially the gig taken place in Shinjuku Loft in front of a very excited crowd.

The end of 2004 signed the 10th anniversary of Skylark's Birthday and Eddy thought it's the right moment to publish "In the Heart of the Princess", a double compilation which included all the best and most appreciated hits. In the track list there were also some new version of old tracks like Little Girl, Dream (sung by Kiara) and The Princess' Day (sung by Kiara and Fabio together); two new songs, Last Battle (an instrumental track based on an ancient theme from Mozart) and the edit version of the brand new hit Mt.Fuji, written especially for Japanese fans and played live for the first time during the Shinjuku Loft concert.
This "Best of Skylark" was published in Japan on the 22nd of December 2004 and in February 2005 by Scarlet Records in Europe. In Eddy's mind this work is the best proof of what the band has created along this long ten years and he is not afraid to consider in the Heart of the Princess like his biggest dream become true.

2005 is the year of an astonished decision: the band announced through its website that the current tour, "Fairytour", is going to be the last Skylark tour ever! There are many reasons to explain this difficult choice and the main ones are the growing problems that the band find to get a adequate sound on stage, the new conception of live show nowadays based, in most of the cases, on pre-recording samplers and a real tiredness. So the band, after having supported VIRGIN STEEL in a double gig at the Ragnarock in Holland (June 05), chose and fixed its third Japanese tour planned for October 2005 as the final events and after a sudden split with the drummer Carlos called back Federico Ria to take care of the drum, as a session man, in the last remaining gigs.
This Japanese tour is based on four different gigs, one at the Shybuya Cyclone in Tokyo, one special acoustic gig, and two tops shows in a metal festival at the Club Quattro in Tokyo and Osaka where Skylark will be the co-headliners together with VISION DIVINE and supported by the Swedish Divinefire.
During this tour the band will perform some new song taken from the coming seventh album "Fairytales". This record is announced to be the most aggressive the band has ever produced and will show also an amazing and impressive performance of Kiara, something more added to the classic Skylark sound and melodies.
Nowadays more than 100.000 copies of Skylark records are sold all around the world and this is another unexpected goal to be celebrated along this farewell tour.
But Skylark story is not over...and "Divine Gates part 3" (!!!) seems to be planned for the end of 2006......