photo by Katja Kuhl
Italy is known around the world as the origin for some of the finest art ever created. It was the center of art during the Roman Republic and Empire as well as during the Renaissance. With such an incredibly rich history in fine art and some of the most recognizable works of art including the Mona Lisa, one wouldn’t immediately assume that one of today’s best rock bands is also from Italy; Milan to be exact. The band is Lacuna Coil and their music is their masterpiece and Dark Adrenaline is their latest work of art. Maximum Ink’s Aaron Manogue had a chance to chat with vocalist Andrea Ferro about the new record, their first single “Trip the Darkness” and the passing of their close friend and singer of Type O Negative, Peter Steele.
Maximum Ink: Your latest album Dark Adrenaline has been postponed a few times. How has the album changed over the time that it’s had to mature before its release?
Andrea Ferro: It’s been terrible. The album has been ready and it was meant to come out in October. Then the record label asked us if we could postpone until January because they weren’t ready or set up for the release. So we agreed with them because we didn’t want the album to come out without full support from the label so it was just a very simple logistic problem that we had to agree with. It made no sense to put out an album without the full support so we just had to wait and now finally the days coming close.
MI: It’s got to be exciting to finally have all your hard work finally pay off?
AF: Yeah, we’ve been working a lot on everything. I appreciate the fact that we had time to work on every detail before the release; all the promotion and all that stuff. At least we had time to take care of everything, to do a little tour to warm up. It has been worth the wait.
MI: What can you tell the fans in your own words about the upcoming album?
AF: I think it’s a very mature album. It has a little bit of our history in it like our signature sound from previous records like Karmacode or Comalies but there is also a newer side of the band with fresh production, some newer sounds and arrangement of lyrics; it’s more contemporary I would say. We wanted the album to sound right for this year, 2012, and not sound exactly the same as the previous ones. It’s a mix between our characteristical sound and the new direction of the band.
MI: It seems a lot heavier at some points but it definitely still has that Lacuna Coil sound.
AF: We wanted to have a very powerful album. That was clear from day one when we started the song writing because we were coming from a bit of a negative place where we had some troubles in our personal lives, nothing particularly crazy, but people splitting with their girlfriend or having a friend passing on. So we were coming from this negative spot and we wanted to put this energy into something more powerful and creative, so we knew the album would sound very powerful. On the previous record we were experimenting more with more of a rock sound and we were missing the power especially for the live shows. We were missing a bit of the energy on the previous album so we knew this would be a heavier and darker album at the same time. That’s why we called it Dark Adrenaline.
MI: A pretty good example of that is your first single of the album “Trip the Darkness.” Can you tell me what the song is about?
AF: We chose it for our first single because it represents the album perfectly because there is something from the past but there’s also some fresher drum beats and guitar rhythms and there is a very epic close, which had a simple structure but there’s a break in the middle and then picks back up again in the chorus. Also, lyrically, the fact that we were traveling into this negativity but we wanted to go deeper into the fresh sound. We just wanted to leave the negativity and use it as a creative tool and I think that very often darkness is a very creative place. This is because when you are in darkness you reflect on your life, you find new directions and sometimes you are even more creative than when using positivity and happiness. Some of the best art has been composed in the darkest moments of the artist.
MI: What was it like working with producer Don Gilmore?
AF: We started working with him on our previous album Shallow Life but that was the very first time we met him and worked with him and we started a very nice relationship with him. We really loved to work with him again because we knew we could reach an even better result because we knew we really wanted him to be part of the project. We didn’t want him to mix the album because he gave the last album a very rock sound because he came from a rock environment and we wanted it to sound heavier so we decided to mix with some different people. We also knew he could really help us on the lyrics and arrangement side of things and with the structure of the songs. He really was important in that aspect and he can also put the right type of pressure on us when it’s time to record, and he was also smart enough to know when it’s time to take it easy. He’s really good to work with because he’s so experienced.
MI: I recently read that you dedicated the song “My Spirit” on the new album to rock legend and your late friend Peter Steele of Type O Negative. Can you tell me what he meant to you personally?
AF: His band was one of our main inspirations when we started this band back in ’97 or so. We loved his type of just pure, rugged metal so we have to thank him for that first. And then we had the chance to have a very expansive tour with them in America and we spent a lot of time together and became friends. We’d go out for dinner in Brooklyn and every time we were going to New York he was coming out to the shows. Every time he was coming to Italy, we would go out to see him and I’d sing songs with them on stage. It was a true friendship, even with Kenny and Johnny, we took their side project out on one of our tours. So when he passed away, Marco, our bass player, he wrote all the music for the song the very night that he heard the news and that’s why it sounds a bit like Negative because it was a tribute to the band and to him. And we say in the song that we are sad because you are not here anymore but your legacy that has been communicated to us personally and artistically are going to be with us forever, so we are going cherish and that’s why we dedicated the song to him.
He was very different from the image he portrayed. You think about this giant man, and he was kind of scary but in reality he was very smart and very human. He was very down-to-Earth and nice to talk with about a lot of things. I was really sad when we heard the news. It was really dramatic and we wanted to make a tribute to him.
MI: Can you tell me about your touring plans to support Dark Adrenaline?
AF: We start the tour on January 26th so we have a couple of days for the release in North America. We’re going to support Megadeath on the Gigantour. It will be them Motorhead, us, and Volbeat. It will be a huge tour with two classic acts like Megadeath and Motorhead and two newer bands bringing a different sound. It’s very interesting because they all bring a little different sound.
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