Interview: Prika Amaral of Nervosa Talks ‘Jailbreak’

“This came from necessity, but I’m enjoying it very much!” exclaims Prika Amaral of her new role as lead vocalist in addition to her pre-existing spot as guitarist in the thrash brigade Nervosa.

Hailing from Brazil, the shredder has been devoting her life to a band that has seen a multitude of members come and go. She feels that in order to maintain Nervosa as a force to be reckoned with, she needs to become the frontwoman as well, stating, “I don’t want to have the risk of trusting in someone who will ask to change the deal or stop Nervosa so they have time for side projects. I live 100% for this band, and I will not allow anyone to put Nervosa in the back.”

Jailbreak, Nervosa’s new album, out now via Napalm Records, features Amaral’s debut as lead vocalist. Along with navigating a new set of songwriting duties, she’s embracing the myriad challenges of her position.

“I have to take more care of my health, like not drinking alcohol on tour, having enough sleep, and eating better, because everything can affect the voice,” she explains. Even though she’s fresh on the job, Amaral fully understands the responsibilities involved with singing. “Our throat is our instrument. If our body is in good condition, we can sing better. So, changing my lifestyle is the main thing, but this is good!”

Although her songwriting and performing tasks have changed, Amaral’s mission statement for Nervosa remains intact.

“The main thing about Nervosa is showcasing opportunities for women in music, mainly in metal,” the axewoman says, “This is something important, and I fight to keep this alive.” She’s also crystal clear about the essential requirement to be in the band, declaring, “I feel responsible to always keep Nervosa an all-female band.”

The central theme to Jailbreak ties into her vision, meant to encourage the listener to, in her words, “be free from anything that makes you change to fit in.” Amaral is partial to imagery that’s empowering, and the record speaks to this, as she decrees, “It is time to be proud of who you are. Life is too short to waste time doing something that we don’t like or be something that we are not. Break free from the jail, and be happy.”

Her philosophy is certainly reminiscent of fellow Brazilian thrasher and metal icon Max Cavalera (Sepultura, Soulfly). Along with James Hetfield (Metallica) and Mille Petrozza (Kreator) as influences, Cavalera obviously hits home significantly to Amaral, who’s now a fellow lead vocalist/guitarist.

“Brazil is one of the biggest metal scenes in the world. We have many good bands in many different styles of metal and rock, and also a lot of independent media that work very well. What is missing for us is money,” she sighs. “We live in a country with huge inequality and with a lot of corruption.” With those factors weighing against it, however, their metal community still thrives, as she continues, “One big band’s concert can cost between 40 and 50 euros in Europe normally, but in Brazil, to see the same band, you will pay 150 euros or more. This, in our reality, is a salary. But I see the scene as very united and organized, you know.”

As she continues to weather storms in her country, Nervosa carriy on against their adversity as well. Amaral sees no other way to move than forward. “We are super passionate, and we always find a way to make things happen,” she concludes.

Jailbreak is available now from Napalm Records. Follow Nervosa on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for future updates.

Photo courtesy of Gregory Dourtounis.

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