Interview by Miriam C.In this exclusive interview Weeping Silence‘s singer Diane Camenzuli take some time to look back over her 3 years with the Maltese band and to spill some interesting news about the upcoming album “Opus IV Oblivion” and their recent signing with the German label Massacre Records. Stay tuned ‘cuase something really good is comin’! Hi Diane, first of all, how are you and thank you for this special interview. How life is treating you nowadays?
Hi Miriam, long-time no-see! I am very busy at the moment in every aspect of my life, but anyway, my life has always been like that – going from one thing to another. I hope you are well!It’s recent news that Weeping Silence signed with German based label Massacre Records. How do you feel about it and how was the first contact with them?
We are very happy to be on the roster of this much respected record label. Massacre Records goes back a long time and they worked, and are still working, with great artists. The others and I look up to bands that released albums on Massacre Records, such as King Diamond and Solitude Aeternus among others. So, yeah, it’s definitely a move in the right direction for us. Both the label and the band are looking forward to an interesting and rewarding collaboration.Personally, I’ve really enjoyed your previous album “For the Unsung”. Unfortunately right after its release you had to say goodbye to Rachel and Joseph. Although you’re a member of the band since 2012, would you like to take a trip down memory lane and tell us how you joined the band?
Although it was the beginning of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for me, it was a tough time for the band. Changing vocalists is a trying test for any band, and it takes time getting used to by the fans too. So much so that it comes up regularly in interviews . Rachel and Joe left their mark on WS history and their work will never be forgotten both by the fans and the band.
I joined the band though an audition in 2012. I remember it was very exciting and I was going to die with anxiety that day. Having been an extrovert suffocating in my own emotions, I needed to express the latter and my energies badly. Furthermore, It is extremely hard in Malta, and maybe elsewhere too, to join a band whose members are committed and make music a priority in life. You need to forget some of your needs and be there for it all the time.What about Dario, your male colleague, from what I recall he joined the band in 2013, one year after welcoming you. How did you come across him?
Dario was always an acquaintance and we used to say hi at gigs and festivals we used to attend. I got to know him personally after his audition and later his addition to the band’s line-up. Actually he joined shortly after me, very early in 2013.In retrospect, was it hard to fill in Rachel‘s shoes and gain the deserved respect from your fans?
Rachel was loved by many fans and at first people were shocked with the news. Having said that, I was always given a warm welcome every time I was on stage and most fans have been supporting me throughout the years. The band also played several concerts in Malta and in other countries in Europe with this current line-up, and we’ve made more friends along the way.Reading your recent updates published on Facebook, I discover that Angelo Zammit, the drummer, has recently finished recording his section. How’s it working with your new producer David Depasquale and how’s he helping the band in forging this upcoming masterpiece?
We are recording our new album at Spine Splitter Studio. Dave’s a great guy, and it’s easy to work with him. It’s fun to be at the studio of course, but at the same time tiring. This album is very dear to us and we want to take our time to do it right. As you said, Angelo is now finished and next up are the bass and guitars. Can’t wait to hear their work! I will record last, so I must wait a few months more before doing my part.
Aside this fantastic news, you have already announced the title of your next album called “Opus IV Oblivion”. What can your fans expect from this album musically and lyrically?
“Opus IV Oblivion” will be a squarely gothic-doom metal album, but it will also have an unmistakable uniqueness to it. It will have more variety than “For the Unsung” with heavier passages, and many slower ones too. The contrast is greater and more readily noticeable. Most of the lyrics are written by Sean, our bassist. We’re doing something different lyrically this time. The focus will be on inner peace with the ‘self’, and a search for the conscious being, detached from the many illusions that we surround ourselves with. There is the dark side, the unknown, the search for knowledge, understanding our inner selves and our acceptance of death. There are notions of hope, acceptance and other related elements of life. I also wrote about some personal psychological transitions, moving from one phase to another in life, and choosing which personal values and beliefs to keep or discard. Lyrically it is complex; I’d say the most complex we’ve ever had. It is surely different to anything we had before. Anyone searching for more than just music, and looking for something deeper lyrically should find it here. We also worked hard to associate the lyrics more tightly with the musical feel to create an overall dramatic ambiance. Vocally it was a challenge especially when it came to singing Sean’s lyrics, both to grasp what Sean wanted to convey lyrically and in terms of projecting that in the vocals.
Vocal tones will be melodic yet melancholic. Dario’s deep growls will also add a sense of tragedy, emphasis and misery. We are confident that this is an improvement that will stand out on the next album. We’ll see … Musically, I think everyone is striving to experiment with different dynamics and to make sure that all the compositions will not only sound good on the record but will also be moving during live performances. From my side, I am trying to use different vocal techniques and also use low-pitch notes.Do you have an idea of when the album will be released?
The album is still not scheduled by the label. However, we are aiming at an autumn 2015 release.In all likelihood, it’s still early to speak about it but in your point of view, but how was the band able to improve after the last album “For the Unsung”?
I seem to have given it away earlier … but we believe that “Opus IV Oblivion”is stronger lyrically and musically. You’d argue that most bands believe that their next album is better than the previous one! … Yes, of course. Still, we approached the album in a different manner to previous albums. The intention to create ambiance by use of vocals, lyrics and music all clearly intertwined was central to this album’s composition.Of course, since you’re part of WS … back in 2014, WS played a gig at the one of the hottest metal festivals ever: Metaldays (formerly Metalcamp) in Slovenia. What are your memories about that special gig?
Touring with the band gives me a sense of belonging and when it is a challenging experience, such as Metaldays, you really test your relationship with the band members. We spent five days camping which was hard especially for me being slightly asthmatic. It was fun, but scary too at the beginning due to the fact that I was sick. The change in weather from extremely hot weather to cool weather did not help me. At least, we were lucky to play later in the week, so I had the chance to adapt to their summer climate and to enjoy the festival just like any other metal fan present. Opening up the camp to the view of surrounding mountains was bliss. I used to rush to have a shower and go for a walk in the beautiful surrounding countryside. We met some great bands too including our friends Beheaded and we chatted, had some beers and junk food We also went to the Metaldays beach parties and made more friends … it was good fun – Metaldays is a great festival after all! At the end of the day it is what we want, and all part of the rock-and-roll life so-to-speak. We can’t wait to play the other festivals that we have lined-up, which include Metal over Malta and The Dames of Darkness in the coming months.Apparently Malta loves doom because on 21st March there will be the first edition of Metal Over Malta Festival which sees fellow Swedish band Draconian as headlining band. Would you like to explain and add more details about this special event?
The festival will take place in the outskirts of Buskett, Malta’s only wooded area, and the atmosphere will be fantastic! It is the first edition of this festival and it will feature not only gothic-doom metal but also death, symphonic, gothic, and melodic dark metal. One can expect all the things you associate with a cool indoor festival, from transport to a great sound, lighting, merch stands, Meet-and-Greets with bands and more. Early-bird tickets were sold-out within 3 weeks, which is encouraging. Both foreign and local scenes welcomed this new festival with enthusiasm. Tickets were sold to over ten countries including USA and Russia. We’re honoured to be hosting it and can’t wait to hit the stage. If anyone wants to know more about Metal over Malta just visit the website and Facebook . For tickets click here and here you can watch the promo video. If you like history and archaeology, then visiting Malta should be on your bucket-list. Our world-heritage capital city, Valletta, is one of the best places to visit in Europe this year.Well, Diane, I really thank you for this interview. Please be free to greet freely your fans and our readers. Thanks so much.
Thank you for your continuous support Miriam. I would like to greet all the readers of Femme Metal Webzine from the sunny island of Malta (not so sunny at the moment). I would love to see some of you giving us feedback on our pages and website.