Hello Matt Young how are you doing?

Very well thank you, Heiko. It’s a pleasure to speak with you.

Please tell us something about your hometown?

I live in a very small town about an hour outside of London. It’s very quiet and peaceful, but close enough to the city that I can still take advantage of all of the exciting opportunities there. Living here I really feel like I have the best of both worlds.

When did you start playing the Bass and when you got the idea to be a singer/vocalist?

Originally, I wanted to be a guitarist. My friends at school were forming a band and I desperately asked if I could be their guitarist – despite not having my own instrument or any experience whatsoever! They politely declined but said that they did need a bass player. I had no idea what a bass guitar was, but I was so eager to start my musical journey that I begged my parents for an instrument as a Christmas present. They relented, though at the beginning they thought it would be a 5 minute wonder. I was hooked instantly, and I’ve barely put the bass down ever since.

Being a singer was never something I aspired to be – in the early days, I did it because no one else wanted to. In time, I started to get extremely inspired by Bruce Dickinson – I wanted to sound just like him! So I set about trying to find a teacher who could help. After a few misfires I found a local rock singer who put me on the right path.

A few years later I would study classical technique with an English countertenor by the name of David Sheppard – he taught me so much about the voice and how it works, I still use his lessons every day.

How did you get into Rock/Metal/Progressive Rock Music?

In the early days of HeKz, we wore our influences on our sleeves – Iron Maiden and Judas Priest! A lot of my initial exposure to rock music came from my dad, my schoolmates and video games. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City had an unbelievably good soundtrack, featuring “2 Minutes to Midnight,” “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin'” and “Rain in Blood.” I played it religiously!

The local rock singer who got me started singing played me “Spirit of Radio” by Rush and said, “I can imagine HeKz making music like this one day.” Hearing that opening guitar riff punctuated by the iconic drum fills was a mind-expanding experience – this was like nothing I had ever heard before, and I loved it. From there, I went on to discover other progressive acts like Dream Theater and Symphony X. A few years later, HeKz were participating in a local Battle of the Bands contest. A very enthusiastic man came up to me and said that, if I was to buy any 2 albums this year, they had to be Damnation and Ghost Reveries by Opeth. He was so persuasive that I took his advice, and I am glad that I did!

When I was very young, I wanted to be a comic book illustrator and write my own stories. Even now, I am drawn to the storytelling element in music – from Maiden and Rush to Jesus Christ Superstar and Handel’s Messiah, all of these works tell a story in a captivating way.

The last album from Hekz was released in 2023 and is called “Terra Nova”. Tell us about the writing process, time in the studio and how the press and fans received the album?

I started to write the music for ‘Terra Nova’ in 2018. I find that I need to write about an album’s worth of material before I get to the good stuff – the songs where the sound has developed enough for it to be the next logical step in the band’s journey. The first song that I was really happy with was called “Supernova,” which later became the title track of the album. As I wrote more songs, I noticed that a theme was developing. In the past, I have shone my spotlight out into the world, but since “Invicta” I’ve been looking inward, writing about things I have experienced that other people can relate to. 

Without intending it to be, the lyrics for ‘Terra Nova’ turned out to be deeply personal. This informed the musical direction as well – in HeKz, every element can be used to tell the story. That is the most important part of the music – the lyrics, vocal, instruments, arrangement and even the production have to synchronize in order to tell the story in the best possible way.

As my writing sessions for ‘Terra Nova’ continued, I was becoming dissatisfied with the other members of the band. Fantastic musicians but lacking the commitment that I felt we needed to take things to the next level. It was a difficult choice to make, but I believed in the music of ‘Terra Nova’ so passionately that I wasn’t going to let it languish on my hard drive and never see the light of day.

During the pandemic, I produced a solo EP under the moniker ‘Maidens of Mercury,’ for which I had the great pleasure of collaborating with virtuoso guitarist Mark Bogert and renowned drummer Moyano el Buffalo. When it came to finding musicians to collaborate with on the new HeKz album, they were the first people I asked. With us all living in different countries, I had no idea if remote recording would work for this album. We took that first song, the title track, as an experiment to see what would happen. As you can imagine, the results gave everybody the confidence that we could create something really special together.

From there, I was fortunate to be introduced to Irina Markevich, whose violin playing adds a whole new dimension to the music. It had been an ambition of mine to add a violinist to the band since we used live strings on our second album “Caerus,” so getting to work with both Irina and Lucia LaRezza on ‘Terra Nova’ was a real dream come true.

The reaction to ‘Terra Nova’ has been superb – I really could not be happier with the response, and it’s amazing to see that there is still so much interest in the album all these months after the release.


In a few weeks the band will play in The Netherlands.  On Friday 12 April in Parkvilla, Alphen a/d Rijn. Please tell us about the preperations before the gig?

We are so excited to return to the Netherlands! The new lineup of the band consisting of Mirko Fadda (guitar), Lucia La Rezza (violin) and Jerry Sadowski (drums) has been working tirelessly since September last year to prepare a very special setlist for Alphen. 
This will be quite unlike any other show we have done before, in the Netherlands or elsewhere. I don’t want to say too much, as we have a few surprises in store. Needless to say, we want this to be the ultimate HeKz experience.

Where the readers can find all info about the band?

The best place is to check out https://linktr.ee/hekztheband – from there, you can navigate to our website, online store and all of the various social media pages.

What are some of your favorite bands?

The bands that I listen to most frequently are Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Queen, ASIA, Rush, Uriah Heep, Deep Purple, Neal Morse, Andrew WK and The Tangent.

Any news about a new album?

In the summer of 2021, I started to get ideas for the fifth HeKz album. At the time, ‘Terra Nova’ was still very much in production, and would be until the middle of the following year.

I remember coming back from a short vacation and having some musical ideas arrive, fully formed, in my head out of thin air. I frantically scribbled them down on the back of my boarding pass so that I could demo them properly when I got back to my studio.

From there, other ideas started to flow and a story began to take shape. Fast forward to today, and I have whittled down 58 pieces of music (almost 4 hours) to 12 songs that I feel are strong enough to provide the foundation for the next album.

I have a title and a running order in place. I’m currently refining some of the earlier compositions so that I have a first draft of the album that flows musically, and there are some lyrics to write for the closing parts of the album.

It’s too early to say when the full album will be released, but I do have a date in mind. As for the first taste of new music, that will happen sooner than you might think.

I am currently sharing little pieces of new music and ideas with the amazing subscribers we have at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/hekztheband. Anybody interested in learning more about ‘Project: Destiny’ and getting access to our full library of exclusive unreleased songs (26 and counting) should check it out.

Do you have a last word to our readers?

Thank you for reading, and for supporting Bonavox. Listen to music, love your life and support local independent artists, whenever you can – it means more to them than you could ever know.