Interview with Mariangela Demurtas (vocals)
By Eric May
Darkest White sees the band in a completely different light than Rubicon. Do you consider it a natural evolution?
Yes I do! And I simply do it because I notice the difference between the band before Rubicon and the band before Darkest White. Talking about the songwriting, it’s been this time more confident, more effective and elaborated. I remember during the first album we didn’t know each other well and it’s been really difficult to find a common taste in music. We made it, but now with the last album we know exactly what we want to say and how. That’s why this last one is more direct, strong, powerful and metal than the previous one.
There is an increased amount of harsh vocal influence on this album. Why did you choose to embrace this style more on Darkest White?
It’s because of the message we want to give and what we want to represent now.
Can you describe the recording process for Darkest White?
We all recorded at different times. First were Tarald and the drums, then Anders and Ole with the bass and guitars, and then me and Kjetil with the vocals at the end. We found that we were working together almost at the same time. Producer Christer André Cederberg made everything much easier for us, being so positive and enthusiastic all the time, I recorded all of my parts in three evenings. (smiles.)
What does the album’s title Darkest White refer to? What would you describe as the darkest white?
Darkest White is the best title for covering most of the aspects of the lyrics. It can describe the white light at the end of the tunnel for example, or a human fascination for something that is self-destructive.
You have performed vocals for Tristania since 2007, and have really hit some excellent notes on this release. What kind of vocal training have you had and who do you look to for vocal inspiration?
I’ve been always working on my own, working hard trying to always get better, to improve and sing more naturally and with power. I listen to everything and I try to learn from those that I find interesting. I think my style of singing is a bit of a mix nowadays, but I always let it come from the heart!
Could you also talk to us about your recent work with Trollfest and Ex Deo? What was it like working with these two very diverse bands and how do you approach that kind of work differently from your work in Tristania?
I like many kinds of music. Trollfest is a band from Oslo, I knew the guys and when they asked me I felt comfortable in participating, and even though I’ve never been involved in this music before I liked it and I had fun. With Ex Deo I knew the guys from Kataklysm in Mexico, because they came to see our show on the cruise 70000 Tons Of Metal and they wanted to ask me to participate on their new album. Maurizio is originally Italian and he wanted to ask Italian artist to participate! It’s been really cool and constructive.
What is the message, if any, of Darkest White?
The lyrics of Darkest White want to evoke images and thoughts in the listener, and there is no real set key to what they should mean to the one who listens to them. They are often not written with something specific and personal in mind.
What do you think of the gothic metal scene today? Being one of the bands that single-handedly shaped and molded the gothic metal scene, are there any current era gothic metal bands out there that have impressed you?
The gothic metal scene today seems to be less popular than before, but still the big ones are out there. My favorite acts are Moonspell, My Dying Bride and I really liked Type O Negative.
What do you think about society these days? Darkest White sounds like a dark cloud with a silver lining in a way. As in, no matter how bad things become and how hopeless the world might be, there’s still hope out there somewhere. Do you agree?
Always hope, of course. Nowadays things are pretty fucked up, but sincerely it’s always been like that. There has never been only peace. I find myself really lucky to exist, to discover and to have possibilities and chances. It’s too bad that sometimes we forget how lucky we actually are. We just have to keep going.
Purchase Darkest White here: shop.napalmrecords.com/darkest-white-ltd-digipack