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The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
LACUNA COIL ANDREA FERRO INTERVIEW 2014

HARD ROCK INTERVIEWS 2014 - LACUNA COIL VOCALIST - ABDREA FERRO

LACUNA COIL

Andrea Ferro spoke to Mark Rockpit about the great new album 'Broken Crown Halo' and recent line-up changes. he checks in from the middle of the current US Tour!

 

MARCH 2014

CHECK OUT OUR REVIEW OF 'BROKEN CROWN HALO' HERE

Lacuna Coil is busy in the midst of their current US Tour, then it's on to Mexico and South America to mark the first outing for material from the excellent new album 'Broken Crown Halo'.


Mark: Hi, thanks for talking to The Rockpit this morning. First of all, congratulations on the new album, “Broken Crown Halo”, it’s fantastic, we love it! Are you pleased with how it came out?


Andrea: Yes, it was quite a surprise, because in the beginning we were meant to record the album in Los Angeles, where the producer Jay Baumgardner has a studio, so it was natural for us to go there, but for some reason we ended up in our home town, Milan in Italy. He decided to come there, which is great because we have a lot of gear from the 60’s and 70’s, guitars etc., so the way we would be recording it would be the way we’ve been using these different kinds of equipment.


Mark: That’s great. But you recorded a new album and then lost two members of the band, the two Cristiano’s, they left for personal reasons, was it amicable?


Andrea: Yes, they made the decision after the European tour with Paradise Lost and Catatonia that they wanted to move on with their lives, and not be on tour all the time. The main reason was for the change of lifestyle they wanted to have. For us, it was a period where the new album was coming out, and we had plans for touring and playing in all different places, so, they didn’t feel it was the right thing for them anymore, so it wasn’t about the music or the relationships within the band, it was just that they wanted to change their lives. It was sad, and a bit weird in the beginning, because after 15 years it’s not easy to change something like that, but at the end of the day it was probably best for both parties. They don’t have to be away now, when they don’t want to be, and they can focus on their new life, and we have a refreshed energy because everyone else wants to be on tour.


Mark: That sounds good. How is Ryan fitting in, is he fitting in nicely?


Andrea: Of course, it’s been more difficult in terms of a personal feeling you know, but there was no bad blood or argument, we all sat down together and very amicable. They just wanted to change their lives and you can understand that. Ryan is great.


Mark: Sounds great. How’s the US tour going so far?


Andrea: So far, pretty good, the bands are getting on very well, we’ve had a couple of nights out together, so it’s all good. It is just the beginning for us, as we then go in to a headline run in the US and then we go to South America for a while, it’s actually a longer tour for us, it’s like three months.


Mark: Yes, you’ve got Brazil and Mexico coming up, that should be interesting, the metal fans love their music down there, and there’ll be some pretty wild crowds!


Andrea: Yeah, it’s always amazing, they are so loud and so full of energy, and they love music with a stronger passion and they show that at the shows. I think too because they know we are not going to be there all the time, so they appreciate it more.


Mark: Let’s talk about the new album. It’s a very rich album, lyrically, did you set out with particular themes and ideas before you started writing, or does that come as part of the process?


Andrea: Usually, we like to talk about real life, so we have in mind certain topics, but then they’re not necessarily going to end up in the songs. When we demo the vocals we have already come up with some words and sentences, that make sense, so they kind of give you the direction already, and sometimes you have to go with the flow. This time around there has been a lot of comparison between the metaphors and between the real life stories; we have been using a lot of mixed metaphors, like in “Die & Rise” we talk about werewolves and vampires, but the song talks about the fact that you have to be adaptable and regenerate yourself to every experience, whether that be positive or negative, you have to adapt to be a better person. So, we use a lot of these with zombies, and other horror characters, which is always the base of our lyrics.


Mark: Yes, it works really well and keeps it interesting. As far as the music is concerned, there is a grander, more, almost cinematic feel to what you’ve done, were you going for that big sound? Was that something you really wanted to achieve?


Andrea: I think it was something we always wanted to do, write music for movies. This time around, Marco, the bass player, who is the main song writer for the band, had been watching horror, action and police movies, and trying to imagine the soundtrack to what he was seeing, and when he was composing, the way he approached the keyboards and the classical songs, he used stuff you’d use in a movie soundtrack, and every song he wrote has a little story that could be a movie.


Mark: It does sound wonderful, and it’s one of those rare albums that it’s hard to pick favourites, there are so many great songs on there! We love, “Nothing Stands in Our Way” that’s a great song, and “Zombies” is probably one of our favourites. Are there any of these songs that are going down better live, than others?


Andrea: We are actually approaching now, playing some of these new songs live. So far, we have been playing “Nothing Stands in Our Way” and “Die & Rise” and they both work really well, “Zombies” is another one that will go down really well live, and there will be even more, I think, the album has so many different vibes, I am sure there’ll be something there for every audience, it is a mature, complete album because it has a lot of different vibes, that is my feeling.


Mark: I think you’re right, there’s also a lighter tone to it than previous releases, I love the almost bitter sweet,” I Forgive (But I won’t Forget Your Name)” the ballad that’s on there.


Andrea: Yes, we were just shooting the video for that just before we left for this tour, and it should be out within a couple of weeks.


Mark: We had a lot of people ask about the song “One Cold Day” and quite a few thought was their favourite on the album, can you tell us a little bit about that?

Andrea: Marco wrote the music, after we lost our first guitar player Claudio Leo who we’d know since we were kids. When I was 16 or 17 we used to hang out in the same Metal bars, and he was a friend not just a fellow musician. So it’s been very tough, and that song has a very special meaning for us we wrote the lyrics imagining life as a natural passage, we had lots of natural images like the rain and other forces of nature because at the end of the day life and death are both part of the same game, you can’t have one without the other.  And even though no one is ever ready to face it you have to kind of let it go. So we wanted to celebrate his life, his friendship and let him know he will be someone who will always be with us.


Mark: It’s a really great song and a powerful story, and such a great way to remember Claudio. The last time we saw you down-under was the Gigantour tour with Megadeth a few years ago and before that I think with one of our Festivals. Is there any chance we will see you back down here in the near future and for our UK readers do you have any UK dates planned?


Andrea: I hope so because it has been a while, we’ve been down to Australia just twice, once on that tour and once with Soundwave, so hopefully we’ll make our way back, but as we tour so many different places it’s not always easy to find the right shows at the right moment. Touring is also getting harder as there are so many bands out there trying to make a living so you have to be careful to choose the right shows and hopefully make it work and not lose money. We’ll try our best to make it back, we always loved our experiences down-under and we’d love to come back there and also New Zealand.


Mark: As far as the current tour goes, there’s plenty of dates in the US and then South America. What your your plans for the rest of the year do you mainly intent to stay on the road and promote the album?


Andrea: Yeah, after we finish this tour at the end of May, we will come back to Europe for the summer; we’re working on the schedule soon for a proper European Tour in the fall (autumn) and then maybe we can look to places we haven’t been in a while like Australia or Japan.


Mark: The website always looks so cool; does the band have much of a hand in the design and content?

Andrea: Yes, our ex-drummer together with Marco look after the design, we like to keep all the new media fresh and they do a great job! We have a lot of input and we like to keep all the ‘new media’ like Facebook and Instagram looking good and up-to-date. It’s an extra job these days.


Mark: For you personally thinking back to your earliest memories of music was there a defining moment when you knew you had to be in a band?


Andrea: No, actually when we started to play music we didn’t have an idea. Marco and I were skateboarding together from about the age of 14 or 15 and we played because we couldn’t skate in the winter! So we’d sit in his room and jam over stuff like Pyromania and all the other Classic records we had. But we never thought once that we would become professional musicians, let alone an International band that tours the world! That’s something that came step by step in our career. We always loved music and we always loved to express ourselves through art, but we never thought that we could actually, especially being from Italy and singing in English and playing this kind of music, break out!


Mark: We mentioned the website earlier and as a band you certainly do social media well, but with technology changing so rapidly and everyone trying to keep up what do you see as the future for Rock Music? Is it going to get tougher?

Andrea: Yeah it’s getting harder for sure. But that’s for music in general not just Rock. The problem is that the system has been changing so rapidly that people are unsure. Record sales are gone, and people don’t know whether they should buy or download, or stream it. And people are now trying new ways to make revenue for their bands; it’s a very experimental moment of confusion where not many people know where to go. We were lucky that we formed when bands were still putting out records and could get a certain following and grow up on our own, become better musicians while still having support. Now if you don’t make it at the first attempt it’s very hard to make it as a band. The other problem is that so many bands are just trying to sound like what is popular at the moment, and that’s an issue for future generations.  


Mark: We just had another question come in over the internet and I must admit it’s not one I’d considered before. I know that Lacuna has a specific meaning in Italian, especially in music, but is there a real meaning behind the band name?


Andrea: Yes, I mean when we were about to sign our first deal we had a much easier name, but we discovered there were two bands using the same name, so rather than have a problem right from the beginning and to avoid copyright problems we picked our own personal name. We put together the Italian word ‘Lacuna’ which means ‘empty’ and coil which is like ‘spiral’: so ‘empty spiral’ which sounds like something in the air, something you can’t touch, something atmospherical!  That was the meaning and as we made it up its ours!


Mark: One of the coolest names in Rock! As you’ve been around for some time now you must have been through your ups and downs like anyone, what is the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given that has held up over the years?


Andrea: I think it’s to stick together. I think the fact that the core of the band and the song-writers have been together for so long and all have been pulling in the same direction. You can always be a better singer, a better musician, you can always have better production, better promotion but it’s very important that you are willing to work together and to sacrifice together. That’s the most important thing for a band I think.

Mark: If you could have been a ‘Fly on the wall’ for the creation of any great album from any period, just to see how the magic happened and it all came together, what would it have been for you any why?


Andrea: That’s interesting. A classic album? I think it would have been pretty cool to have been around when Pink Floyd created one of their classic albums like ‘The Wall’. Definitely to see how much they were actually creating and writing and how much they were taking drugs. It would have interesting to understand how much the drugs were an influence. I guess that could also go for a band like The Doors: to understand how much actually the fact that they were high changed their song-writing. I mean we’ve never recorded drunk or with drugs so it would be interesting to see how much was inspired by that and how much was just their natural musical talent. And that was such a classic album.  


Mark: And finally an easy question – what is the meaning of life?


Andrea: The meaning of life! (Laughs) I think for me the meaning is just to experience, and to translate that experience into something else. Like when you have a child you can teach them from what you’ve learned, we’re all here to enjoy but also to learn from this life and have the chance to express ourselves. We’re not here just to procreate; we’re here not just to do things for ourselves but to do things for others too. It’s good to share but because very often how the media is it divides people rather than unites them and with unity we can do so much. There’s a lot of hate for no reason and so we must understand that we must be balanced with the Universe.   


Mark: Thank you so much for taking the time to speak to us this morning, caonratulations on the new album and enjoy the rest of the tour.


Andrea: My pleasure, thank you.

 

 

Andrea Ferro spoke to Mark Diggins March 2014

 

 

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