Interview by Miriam Cadoni

It’s not a secret that Italian act Temperance is getting more and more recognition both outside Italy and in its own country. What’s the secret of its success? Good melodies? Great vibes? An amazing songwriting supported by a unique vocal talent? It’s hard to say, but what’s more than clear is that this band has a great potential and still has to show its hand. On the occasion of the release of the brand new band’s album, “Viridian”, we managed to reach Michele Guaitoli for an in-depth interview you can read now on Femme Metal Webzine.

Hi Michele, how are you and how this busy period is treating you?

Michele: I’m really really fine, it’s a great period and everything is extremely well with Temperance, we have this new album that is going to be released today, actually it was released today. We’re streaming some stuff during this night because yesterday we played at Legend Club, in Milan and after the show, at midnight, we’ve celebrated the release of “Viridian” online together with Marco, Alessia and Luca. We are extremely excited for what’s happening and I mean, the first feedbacks are going great, we are receiving the first reviews. Also, we’re heavily promoting with a lot of interviews which are getting setup during during these nights and everything’s really really amazing.

So, we have just introduced “Viridian” and with my next question, I would like to ask you more details about its production. What can you tell me about it?

Michele:  It was a real long, long production which it took us a lot of time because we started to work on this album exactly 1 year ago, in January 2019. Me and Marco decided to take some time on our own and we rented a wooden house in the mountains here in Italy. We stayed there for one week, during this time we gathered all our musical ideas. We have been working for an entire week on which we work on each other’s ideas and consequently, we started arranging by exchanging our song. Of course, we were really critical and we begin to say each other much were the elements/things we didn’t like about our songs in order to I proved them. After that, we ended up with 18 tracks, way more of what actually “Viridian” contains and then, we selected the best tracks, we brought them at Napalm Records’s main HQ and we worked with Sebastian. With him, we chose the best 11 tracks which are complete the collection that you can listen to on “Viridian” plus one more track that it will be released in Japan only. Basically, it’s the work of 12 months that is finally see the light today.

You have just mentioned the fact that “Viridian”‘s session produced 18 songs, however I’m wondering about the leftovers. Are there any plans to use these songs in the future or not?

Michele: We agreed together with Marco that every song has its own momentum and when the moment is gone, the songs aren’t meant to be anymore. So, their moment was supposed for this album since it’s really unlikely that we’ll use them in the future. However, we wanted to have two bonus tracks for the Japanese version of which we ended up using just one. Anyhow, the 7 songs that were dropped is highly possible that will never see the light but never say never, you know? [laughs]

“Viridian” was introduced by an exclusive bonus track “Lost in the Christmas Tree” and it was a really peculiar choice because usually you use a real singles and this was a Christmas themed song. Can you tell more about how the band came up with this idea?

Michele: Of course. Actually, this song wasn’t meant to be on “Viridian”. Simply the reason why is so weird and strange to have a Christmas song inside an album. Consider that, “Viridian” was supposed to be released on January 24th which in a way it makes closer to Christmas and on the other hand, Marco had this dream of releasing a Christmas song. What really happened is that, back then in January 2018, we had a lot of time and he was in perfect Christmas mood and we ended up, one side to realize his long-time dream and on the other side, on Sebastian’s recommendation, to release this track as an additional and special one, because it could be released in December. At the very beginning, this song was presumed to a stand-alone single with any connection whatsoever with “Viridian” but since the release date was so close to the Christmas period, it was logical that “Lost in the Christmas Tree” would be released in the digital edition of “Viridian”.

It was really nice and I even enjoyed a lot your new single “I Am the Fire” that was released two days ago and yeah, I was curious to learn more about this song in particular and if there is a main team behind “Viridian” how “I Am the Fire” connects with the album itself?

Michele: There’s a main theme behind “Viridian” but “I Am the Fire” is one of the songs not connected to it. “I Am the Fire” is a powerful and energetic song where we invite people to feel free, to release their energy and to live their lives freely. I mean, we have so much power inside of us and sometimes we conceal it without releasing it and this song should inspire you set yourself free in a world of freedom with a renowned charge towards experiencing new universes. Instead, with “Viridian”‘s theme, we intend to invite people to enjoy life and to feel the positive vibe that we have. We live in a wonderful world where we enjoy what surrounds us and nowadays, we are wasting our environment. You can see this, for example, from the fires happened in Australia and the current environmental problems that are happening. The meaning of “Viridian” refers to a shade of colour that mixes green and blue which it directly connects to Mother Earth. In truth, these colours can be seen from space when you look at the Earth which is made up by the blue of the sea and the green of trees and grass. Viridian is the colour of nature and life and it’s also the colour of hope. In the end, all these positive messages and invitations to believe and fight for this world is a lesson that “Viridian” wants to stress.

We keep on mentioning the colour viridian but I would like to do a little trip back to memory lane by suggesting Temperance’s past album artworks. I always remember these strong colours and by now, I think it has become a clear band trademark. Is there a reason behind this choice or simply, is a band’s choice?

Michele: There’s a deliberate choice behind this. I mean the artworks are mostly chosen by the artist itself. The first three cover artworks were designed by Gustavo Sazes while the new ones, since our line-up change, are created by Yann Souetre which also he also collaborates with Ayreon’s Arjen Anthony Lucassen. So, the junior artworks are green, orange and brown-ish colours while for example, in the second album “The Earth Embraces Us All” we can find purple and pink tones. As I said before, there’s a reason behind this choice and if you make a choice, you have to be sure and strong when you do it. We don’t like shiny colours as much we don’t like defined choices in life. When you take a decision, you have to be sure of what you are about to do. Your force of will has to be always reassured of what you are doing. So, if you have to pick a colour, it has to be the shiniest, the brightest and the strongest version of its colour.

Since you have mentioned the previous full-length “Of Jupiter and Moons” which represents in a way, your début with the band and, of course, “Viridian” is your second one. What memories do you cherish the most and how things changed for you since then?

Michele: Well, the main thing that I remember about the production of “Of Jupiter and Moon” is the short time that we had for its recording process. Back in the day, Marco wrote to me and Alessia in January 2018 and the album was released on April 2018. Basically, after Chiara Tricarico’s departure and a ponderate thinking, he called us for asking us if we’re up to join the band as the new singers of Temperance, however we had an important constraint to act upon: record in the time the new album. Even if we’re extremely satisfied and proud of the outcome, it was literally a challenge because we had only four months to arrange the mix, learn the songs, record them and consequently, release the album on April 29th, 2018. So, everything was in a rush and super fast. Instead, with “Viridian” happened the contrary because, as I told you, we started exactly one year ago, in January 2019, from that special call. So, we had 12 months to work on it before its planned release and things developed amazingly. If compared to the last time, I cannot even describe how much relaxed we were. We even have the time to record the vocals in different days, we had the chance to work better on all our instrumental parts like the real piano, the string quartet, the children’s choir and the flutes. Everything had its own time and if compared to “Of Jupiter and Moons” we had way more days available and to dedicate to the production of this album. Definitely, it was a more relaxed album.

This leaves me to ask you which are the next plans for Temperance in terms of touring and promotion. Do you have any fixed plans for touring in Europe or you’ll gonna wait?

Michele: Personally, I don’t think I have to remind you about the upcoming Tarja’s tour because you already know of course [both laughs]. So, yes, we have this big plan. Right now, I’m in the venue here in Italy, Fontanafredda, where we’re playing the second release show. Yesterday we played our first release show in Milan and tomorrow we’ll play in Innsbruck (Austria) and the day after tomorrow we’ll play in Brno (Czech Republic). After that, we’ll start this long tour with Tarja of which we’ll be the special guest of both tour legs: our first date will be in March in Portugal, immediately after we’ll head to Central Europe and in April, Temperance will mostly play in Germany and we’ll pass through UK, The Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland. In the end, we have plenty of shows and we will be around 25 to 30 shows together with Tarja. Also, we’re trying to book some festivals for the summer. Definitely, we’ll have more chances to play “Viridian” live during the next months.

Unfortunately, this was my last question and usually, I have a tradition that it follows: now, Michele, it’s your space to be free to say hi to your fans and our readers as you wish. Thank you for your time!

Michele: You’re more than welcome, thank you. Firstly, let me say a special thanks to you because maybe our fans and your readers on Femme Metal Webzine don’t know that we are old friends. We met each other something like 20 years ago in a small town in Italy called Gorizia [both laughing] and it’s amazing to see how friendship and paths can develop. It’s incredible that we are talking in English instead of talking in our own native language, just for this surprising follow up but most importantly, it’s unbelievable that our lives are still connected, I’m very proud of you. That said, I want to invite all the fans of Temperance to connect us because we’re still the guys that answer on social networks, we’re still the guys who replies to the emails, we’re really active on Facebook and Instagram, so if we want to get connected with us or to ask us questions, we are there. Of course, if you want to support us, we have a webstore where all the special version of “Viridian” and our new t-shirt with a renewed design are ready to be purchased. One more last thing, music is live, please feel free to join us in our next gigs together with Tarja. Thanks for following us.


Temperance Official Website

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