Lacuna Coil

by Andrew Frey
September 2009

Lacuna Coil's Andrea Ferro - photo by Clayton Dewey

Lacuna Coil's Andrea Ferro
photo by Clayton Dewey

I have easily listened to “Shallow Life,” the newest release from Milano, Italy born phenoms Lacuna Coil more times than any other release this year. With each play I am swept away by the dynamic interplay between the band’s two vocalists Cristina Scabbia and Andrea Ferro and the bands infectious riffs n beats.  Whatever it took to capture the magic created on “Shadow Life” was well worth the effort.

Lacuna Coil has repeatedly been introduced to the US market over the past decade plus and while garnered increasing success, they have not yet attained what they are certainly capable of. “Shallow Life” may just contain the critical combination of elements needed to propel the band to substantial success. In 2006 their release Karmacode, peaked at number 28 on the Billboard 200, but the highly anticipated “Shallow Life” which was released on April 21, 2009 in the US, debuted at number 16 on the Billboard charts. While their early releases contained a heavier gothic rock element, the latest effort has softened some musical edges to produce a more accessible and straight forward hard rock release. Thanks to producer Don Gilmore, who has worked with pop artists like Avril Lavigne and Good Charlotte, their sound has never been more polished or vivid while maintaining the key elements that continue to set the band apart from others. Subtle bits of industrial and electronica can even be found infiltrating these infectious new metal anthems.  Outside of the vocalists, Lacuna Coil contains Cristiano “Pizza” Migliore (guitar) , Marco “Maus” Biazzi (guitar), Marco Coti Zelati (bass, keyboards) and Cristiano “Criz” Mozzati (drums, percussion)

In July of 2004 I interviewed Lacuna Coil for the first time. I recently was again fortunate enough to exchange a few questions with the band as they were gearing up for their next big gig, The HardDriveLive tour. Vocalist Andrea Ferro took the time to answer my questions.

MI: In our prior interview, you considered your music to be “A mixture between gothic, rock, metal with a modern touch. A perfect balance between melancholy and power.” Is this still the musical recipe the band follows?
AF: I think the basic elements are the same but I feel that this time around we’ve been pushing a bit more on the rock side of our music. The songwriting has been more fluent and we’ve been following the inspiration as usual.

Lacuna Coil's Christina Scabbia - photo by Clayton DeweyMI: The band has managed to keep and maintain the twin vocal approach. Do you feel this has impacted your success?
AF: Maybe in the beginning when some people saw us as a band with an unusual setup and had to get familiar with our style, right now I think we are a really unique band with a unique style and a good variety in our music. I think of ourselves as pioneers of a certain kind of rock/metal. Judging by how far we have gone with this small band from Milan, Italy I think we have been right.

MI: Shadow Life features a big name producer. Did he have a lot of input into the new release? Did this affect your artistic vision of the album?
AF: When you work with such an experienced producer as Don Gilmore, obviously you want him to help you out making the best record possible but honestly the songwriting was already really fluent before he stepped in the picture and our goal was to refresh our sound. I think that he really helped us in being focused and get rid of the useless stuff.

MI: Why have you chosen to continue playing the style of music you do? Certainly there have been producers or managers or others trying to ‘improve’ your sound?
AF: We’re not the type of band that is waiting for somebody to tell them what to do or to wait for somebody to write a song for them, we listen to advice from people that we respect but we walk our way. We write music for ourselves.

MI: Where has your music been most appreciated?
AF: North America and Europe are our best territories but we’re opening new markets like Japan, Russia and Australia and we’ve never been in South America so far.

MI: How has your music affected people in the real world?
AF: It’s hard to tell, we receive many messages from people that talk about our music and how important it is for them, how much we have helped them through hard times. Music connects in a really deep way and sometimes that can be magic. Sometimes it seems that music is right there in the air and we only have to give it a voice with our band.

MI: Do you have any comments on the state of the planet?
AF: I don’t like the way many people abuse the planet and I have a deep respect for nature and vital energy, I do my best to try to make this world a better place, everybody should do the same even in the smaller level.

MI: Tell us about the tour you are currently on.
AF: The HardDriveLive Tour is a new type of tour with the support of a big radio program, it will feature “All That Remains,” “Lacuna Coil” and “Maylene and the Sons of Disaster.” A good variety of music with up and coming bands all over North America.

MI: The last time Lacuna Coil was in Madison it was for WJJO’s ‘Band Camp.’ How did that go? I know it was a blustery day.
AF: ‘Band Camp’ was an awesome show for us. We had a lot of troubles with a couple of storms that were approaching the site and we had to delay and cut our performance but the crowd reaction was insane and we really had a good time!

You too can go insane as the HardDriveLive Tour blasts through Madison on 10/ 3 at The Barrymore and 10/7 at House of Blues in Chicago. Come see what all the buzz is about!

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CD: Shallow Life Record Label: Century Media
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