Interview by Tony CannellaThe veteran Italian metal band Lacuna Coil has been blazing a metal trail across the U.S. as part of the Hottest Chicks in Hard Rock tour – which by all accounts has been a huge success. With their new album “Broken Crown Halo” set to be released the band is poised for a long road of touring. Recently we spoke to one half of the bands lead vocal duo Cristina Scabbia to talk about the new album, the departure of two key members and more. You are currently out on the Hottest Chicks in Hard Rock tour. How has it been going so far?
It’s been amazing. We have a little bit more than a week I think, at least six or seven shows before the end. It feels weird because there is such a great atmosphere between the bands and there are good turnouts to shows. Everything is doing really, really good.I wanted to ask you about your new album, “Broken Crown Halo”. It’s set to be released soon. What can you tell us about it?
Well, I can tell you that we’re really proud of it, but that would be kind obvious coming from the artist. I really believe that this sums up fifteen years in the career of Lacuna Coil, starting from the roots to the modern influences that we like to include in our music and our songs. We started writing it, I would say about a year ago, because Marco our bass player had been forced to stay home because of a problem with his arm, so he wrote pretty much the music for the album, and Andrea (Ferro) and I came on board around the end of July last year to write the vocal melodies and the lyrics. It was recorded in Milano and the producer is Jay Baumgardner. We’re really happy about it, so April 1st, we’re very excited.Are you playing any new songs on this tour?
Yeah, we’re playing a couple of new songs at least on this tour. After this tour we’re going to be on a headliner run and we might play some more.How have the fans responded to the new songs?
The reaction is amazing, because you never know what to expect because the crowd doesn’t know the new songs, but the reaction is fantastic, they’re jumping. A lot of the people know the lyrics and songs already because we could see people singing the words, and that’s a great signal.Have you gotten much feedback from people who have heard the album?
Only journalists because the album is not out, so the only ones that are hearing it are the journalists and they’re extremely happy. A lot of people were surprised about the quality of the songs and the recording and the fact that we really put a mark on putting out a record with a unique style which is ours, I’m really happy about the feedback.Cris Migliore (drums) and Cristiano Mozzati (guitar) recently departed the band. Why did they leave?
They left because they wanted to do something different; they want to make a change in their life. So there was no beef between us, it’s not that we had a fight or they didn’t like the band anymore. They just couldn’t deal with this lifestyle any more. It’s a lifestyle that keeps you far from your home and your family for months, so it’s not very easy to deal with. We’re still friends; there are no problems between us. It was probably the friendliest split in history (laughs).Who do you have replacing them?
Ryan Folden is playing drums with us and he was Cris’s drum tech. He actually replaced Cris for a year because he came on tour with us while Cris was home with his new baby, so we knew him very well, he’s a great person, an amazing drummer, so he was the obvious choice for us and we’re going on with just Maus on guitar.
Is Ryan a permanent member of the band or is it just for this tour?
We want to stay as a four member line-up. We are not looking for a replacement, we are not auditioning, nothing like that.Last year I saw the band with Sevendust and Coal Chamber in Hartford, Connecticut. It was the first time I had the chance to see Lacuna Coil live and I was just blown away. Tell us a little about your impressions of that tour?
That was awesome. We knew the Sevendust guys and we knew Dez from Coal Chamber because we toured with Devil Driver before, so it was like being on tour with friends. The crowds were kind of mixed but really receptive toward every band that was playing. I’m really, really happy we got a lot of new fans and we’re still in touch with the guys. I miss them actually.What are your plans following the completion of the Hottest Chicks in Hard Rock tour?
After this tour we’re going to jump on a headliner run and then festivals in the US. Then we are going to go back home for some summer festivals. After that, everything still has to be planned. I know there will be another tour in Europe, but we don’t have a full schedule yet.You mentioned headlining dates following this tour. Will they be in the States?
Yeah. We’ll be in the States until the end of May.Obviously the band does a lot of touring worldwide. What do you do to pass the time between shows? Is it just music, music, music or do you have an opportunity to get away from it for awhile?
Actually now I’m talking to you from it’s like an open mall because it’s a beautiful day, it’s sunny and warm and it’s fantastic, the sun is in my face. It’s way better than being on the bus.You are also in the new book celebrating women in metal, right?
I honestly didn’t know about this book. I saw the news and saw that I was on the cover of it – and I do so many interviews that I honestly don’t recall when I did an interview for the book. I think it’s good that they did something like that because now there are so many bands with a female in the line-up, but for me it’s been so normal for so many years because in Europe it is way more common to have a female in the band. When I started, I was one of the first ladies in a rock/metal band, so I think it’s cool that they’re doing this celebration of women in metal.We’ve come to the end of this interview Cristina. I just want to thank you so much for doing this.
Thank you!In closing, is there anything you would like to add or say to the fans to wrap this up?
We invite everyone to listen to the record and especially fans should check us out live. Sometimes records can give a lot but I think we are way better in a live setting because you can really feel the energy coming out of the band.I totally agree with that. I’ve been a fan for a long time and I finally got a chance to see Lacuna Coil live and the energy was just off the charts. It was incredible.
There’s even more energy right now. I don’t know why, but I can feel it. It’s electric on stage.