Carlos from Rock metal electronic project Time Cero in conversation with Top HitZ

Time Cero are a rock/alternative/metal band based in Lima, Peru and fronted by their creator Carlos Li Carrillo who moved to Boston USA when he was 18 years old. During his teenage years in Lima, Peru in the mid 80’s, Carlos was the bass player and co-writer of Thrash Metal band “Curriculum Mortis”. Their first material was recently released on a U.S. vinyl edition and sold out 1000+ copies in the first year of release.

During the early 90’s Carlos was in the Progressive Rock band called ‘Avispon Verde’ and recorded 2 records while gigging regularly across the Lima alternative rock scene. In the late 90’s Carlos relocated to Hong Kong where he was influenced by numerous music genres and sounds from different parts of the world delving into digital recording and electronic sounds.

In 2001 while Carlos was travelling around the world, he created Novalima an Electronic collective band. The band mixed different grooves and singers from the around the world with Afroperuvian vocals and percussions.

Novalima became a big success with its first self-titled album on the Lima music scene and they soon signed their ” Afro” album with Mr. Bongo Records based in the U.K.

The song Machete was licensed to the world famous Robert Rodriguez “Machete” movie starring Danny Trejo and Robert De Niro. Later on Novalima released the album Coba Coba which was nominated for the 10th Latin Grammy as Best Alternative Record.
It was after producing one more album in his previous band that Carlos decided to move into different directions and started his current solo project called Time Cero.

Time Cero mixes a combination of styles ranging from Industrial Metal and Rock sounds to tribal and dance percussion. The project was recorded in Lima, Peru and was mixed and mastered by Kevin Paul in London.

Kevin Paul was the head engineer of Mute records and has mixed known bands such as Nick Cave, David Bowie and Depeche Mode. In June 2016, Kevin Paul joined Carlos in Lima,Peru to mix the Surround 5.1 version of the Time Cero album which will be released worldwide on DVD a few months after the digital Stereo release this November.

The brand new single off the album is “Time Cero”.

Carlos from Time Cero in conversation with Top HitZ

TC Carlos

How would you describe your music ?

Time Cero has a wide variety of different genres such as Rock, Pop, Metal, Industrial, Gothic and Dance combined in a unique style. The lyrics contain powerful thoughtful messages and metaphors with a dark but positive direction

What is your new single about and where did the inspiration come from ?

The single TIME CERO gave way to the album concept and band name. Time zero is really the first instant of our universe as we know it, however without really knowing the physical meaning, I wrote the song intuitively referring to a new beginning for myself; the time to start realizing my own thoughts and ideas.

What are your 5 tracks or artists of all time ?

Slayer, NIN, Black Sabbath, United Future Organizations, Depeche Mode

How do you create your wonderful dark and powerful sound ? 

I wrote, composed and produced all the songs and lyrics for Time Cero. For some songs I create it from scratch and record the initial bass, synth, guitars and sequence to start building it. Then I record the other musicians’ drums, guitars and vocals. However the most interesting part is that with every new musician adding their vibe, the music transforms and the project grows. I like vintage and modern sounds, so I have a wide combination of new and old technologies in order to create new sounds.

What’s been one of the most hilarious moments or highlights while touring or playing a gig ?

When we were playing in Switzerland, during the last song the audience jumped and danced onstage together with the band.

Who plays what in Time Cero ? 

Coqui Tramontana – Lead Guitar

Diana Foronda – Vocals

Michel Lovon – Lead Vocals

Pier de Bernardi – Drums, Cymbals

Carlos Li Carrillo – Bass, Synths, Sequencer, Guitar

Where does your name come from ?

My last name is from China as my father is Chinese. My first name and mother’s maiden name are Spanish as it is the major influence in Latin America. I myself have a combination of race and cultures with Chinese, Spanish, Italian and Peruvian.

Name of your producer and studio ?

I am the producer of Time Cero. For making this record we recorded it in my Lima studio and mixed and mastered the Stereo version in London with Kevin Paul. The Surround 5.1 version was mixed in Elias Ponce Studios in Lima and mastered in London also by Kevin Paul.

What instruments do you play?

I play the piano, synth, guitar, bass, double bass, and sequencer. However, for live concerts and gigs I am the Bass player as this is my main instrument.

What was the first song you ever played or learnt?

They were two main riffs; Smoke on the Water by Deep Purple (probably same as many..), and also an intro song from a British Heavy Metal band called ‘Tyrant’

Is your family musical?

Yes, from my mother’s side. She is a poet and musician. My Grand Uncle was a famous composer and piano player, and my Grandfather played the accordion. My cousin from the same side is now the Director of the National Symphonic Orchestra in Peru.


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