Lion Heart & Paper Tiger by Torment Of Giants | INTERVIEW
Author: Thommy Delaney
Torment of Giants are a powerful, hard rocking band from Bergen County, New Jersey.
Performing since 2019, the band features Lisa M. Bello on vocals and guitar, Ant. Bonillo
on guitar, Dennis Scrivanich on bass guitar, and James Irianne on drums. During their
time together, they have released two studio albums as well as a live album. If you love
hard rock and punk, the Torment of Giants are a band you will enjoy! Without further ado,
let's have a talk with them!
Hey, Torment of Giants! Congrats on your new album, "Lion Heart & Paper Tiger!" How
did you guys meet and decide to form a band together?
We formed from the ashes of another band that contained James and Ant and our former bass
player Courtenay. Courtenay and Lisa had been friends for a while, so when Courtenay put out
an ad on Facebook looking for a singer, Lisa replied. After around a year and a half of being a
band, and shortly after releasing our debut album, Courtenay moved to California and quit the
band. About a month after that, we started playing with Dennis who used to play in bands with
James in the past. And, as they say, the rest is history.
The sound of the band is quite interesting from the overdriven guitars to Lisa's powerful
vocals. Who were some of your musical inspirations?
This is often a hard question to answer. We all have various influences that blend in Torment of
Giants and not all of them are in the rock genre. For instance, when choosing a cover song, we
recently chose a Motown song. Our influences are all over place, but somehow it works
Though all of you are credited as the writers on this album, who is the primary writer and
could you tell us a bit about your songwriting process?
We honestly all have input in the formation of new songs. With this past album, a lot of the
music came from the musical collaboration of Dennis and Lisa, but then there are songs where
Ant, James, and Dennis wrote most of the music. Also, James often has a lot of suggestions
and ideas about arranging the parts and dynamics in the songs. One thing that stays constant
though is that Lisa writes all the lyrics. Some titles or ideas may come from the band, but the
lyrics are always hers.
Before releasing the album, you put out a single, "Darker Colors," which happens to be
the first track. What are the lyrics about and where did the inspiration for them come
Darker Colors is about the dark feelings and sadness in all of us. And, that it is okay to not be
okay sometimes. A lot of our friends, fans, and fellow musicians suffer from depression and dark
thoughts and this song is to let them know that it is okay to ask for help with your dark thoughts
when you need it. Sorta a theme song for the depressed if you will...
Another attention grabber is the song called "Beautiful War." The guitar riffs are
incredibly memorable and catchy and I love the switch to minor in the chorus. What kind
of "beautiful war" are you singing about?
Funny enough, the idea for this song came from a conversation on the band text. Dennis and
Lisa were talking about ethnic origins for last names and Lisa stated that her last name literally
means "war" in Latin, but in Italian and Spanish it is the masculine for "beautiful." She then
stated that she's a "manly beautiful war" to which Dennis responded, "sounds like a song." So,
thus the title for the song was born. As far as the subject matter for the song, it is about how
whether you behave in a good or bad way, life sometimes sucks. However, you must stay alive
because the alternative isn't something that we should ever choose. Also, the duality (light
side/dark side) of life.
"Nightmare" is such a great song! It's mostly performed with electric guitar until the end
where an acoustic comes in and the feel of the song seems to change at the end. Are the
lyrics of the song related to some kind of nightmare in your sleep or is it about
something you faced? Where did the idea of changing the mood at the end come from?
In TOG, we love a good transition, but for "Nightmare" it seems that the verses and choruses
are kinda negative in nature, but the end is rather uplifting. The song is a situational journey
about depression and anxiety. The "nightmare" is living through these mental struggles and
either no one believing you feel terrible and/or no one wanting to even listen to you talk about it.
But, all you really need is one friend to listen to you and understand you to not feel alone and
hopeless. And the ending of that song is beautiful to us, and it represents the feeling of having a
friend who loves you enough to always listen to you. Sometimes, that friend isn't an actual
person, it's music.
"Blue Star" is my favorite song from the album. To my ears, it sounds completely
different from the rest of the release. From the dual guitar lead along with great
harmonies at the end to the piano geniously placed near the middle to the end. What are
the lyrics about and what made you arrange the song the way you did?
Blue Star is about never being able to hold someone or something you really love. Either
because you just can't (there's some sort of obstacle) or that the person you want to hold is not
on this earth anymore. It was a conscious decision to arrange it the way we did. We wanted a
BIG ending, so we asked our friends to join us. We asked our friend Gwen Lopez to play piano
and sing and our friend Rene Rosa to sing and they really, really delivered. Much like
"Nightmare," "Blue Star" has an ending that is meant to be hopeful and sort of go on forever,
hence the fade out in both songs. Also, when you have these feelings of longing, the hope is
that at least the person who you can't hold can know that the love is there, even if you're just
shouting your love into the sky.
Do you have any upcoming shows that you would like to promote?
Right now, we only have one show planned for Friday, October 6th at BulletProof Music Studios
in Hazlet, NJ. To keep updated on all things Torment of Giants, please check out our website at
Any plans on releasing more original music in the near or distant future?
We are already thinking about writing for the next record.
Is there anything that you would like to share with our readers?
All our currently released music is on all the streaming services such as Spotify, Apple Music,
YouTube Music, and Amazon Music. Search your streaming service if you don't have any of
these, chances are we're on that service too.
Please make sure to check us out on Facebook, on Instagram (@tormentofgiants), on TikTok,
and on BandCamp.
Torment Of Giants is a four-piece rock band that was formed in Bergen County, New Jersey in
April of 2019. The band began writing songs and playing locally within months of formation.
Although they could not play any in-person shows in 2020 due to the Covid 19 pandemic, they
kept quite busy recording their debut album which was released in November 2020 while
simultaneously building a strong online presence through their Facebook, Instagram, and
YouTube channel. Their song "Trouble Deluxe" was featured on the legendary Genya Ravan's
show Goldie's Garage on SiriusXM in June of 2021. They have also been featured on
BlowUpRadio.com and various podcasts. Torment Of Giants released a live album in April
2022, entitled Live At Jimmy's. Some of the songs on that album are on their second studio
album, Lion Heart & Paper Tiger, released on July 25, 2023. Torment Of Giants are continually
writing songs, booking shows, and making beautiful noise for the masses.
About the Author: Thommy Delaney is a Senior Music Business Major at New
Jersey City University. He is also the lead guitarist and a vocalist in the Bayonne
Indie pop-rock band BreakTime: a four-piece writing modern pop tunes with
generous vintage allusions to artists such as The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers. Looking for something new to listen to? Be sure
to follow BreakTime @breaktimelivenj on social media and stream their music on