Lacuna Coil are simply buzzing to be back on the road. With the pandemic putting them out of action, the Italian metal heroes have missed the buzz of the live performance. “The live shows are everything for us; the energy that’s created between the crowd and us, feeding each other” enthuses Christina Scabbia as we sit down for a chat ahead of their performance at Download Festival 2022. Joined by her musical partner in crime, Andrea Ferro, we talk their return, and forthcoming new album. In a reverie; Eamon O’Neill
Hi guys, welcome to Download Festival; how are you doing today?
Christina Scabbia: Oh, we’re doing fantastic! It’s still weird to be at a festival.
Andrea Ferro: Yeah, it’s the first one in three years basically, and we feel a little bit surreal! We’re here, we know that we can play, but we can’t realise fully that it’s back, you know what I mean? We’re back, and we’re still doing it.
Lacuna Coil are the perfect festival band, so you must be feeling the energy today?
Christina: Totally. We can’t wait to reconnect with our people because we’ve been lucky enough to stay in touch with most of the community through socials and everything because we have a huge, and strong base of fans, but the live shows are everything for us. The energy that’s created between the crowd and us, feeding each other, we can’t wait to see smiles on their faces without masks! It’s exciting.
Rewinding a little bit, and a few years back Christina, you got up and performed with Metal Allegiance during the NAMM Show in Anaheim.
Christina: Yes! It was great. I haven’t seen the guys in a long time. I haven’t been playing with them because I live in Italy, and we live a little bit apart, but it was amazing. It was really good.
You’ve always been happy to collaborate, haven’t you?
It’s good to collaborate. You’re feeding each other, and each others’ arts, which is great.
Speaking of, how did you come to work with Megadeth on ‘A Tout Le Monde (Set Me Free)’ back in 2007 seeing as, originally, Lisa Marie Presley was meant to do it?
Christina: I had no idea about that! I didn’t know that, and that makes me even happier! I basically got told from my management that Megadeth were interested in doing the song, and I was very happy that they asked about me, and I said “yes” immediately.
Were you familiar with the song?
Christina: Yes! It was actually one of my favourites. Very, very weird, and unexpected for sure.
Did you record your parts remotely?
Christina: I recorded my part in England with the producer [Andy Sneap], and I met the band afterwards for the video that we did together.
Were you happy with how it turned out?
Christina: Totally! Yes! The music was different. Of course it was based on the original, but it was newer, it was fresher so I could sing on it without feeling; “oh my god I’m touching something sacred!” I mean, it’s still sacred, but it was a new version so I was happy to do it.
Back to live performance, and the last time we spoke was at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods awards where you won ‘Best Live Act’.
Andrea: That was great, especially because it wasn’t coming in the first years of our career. It came after we’d been around a few years so to receive an award like that because we felt like the band is still being for the people, so it’s still very special to receive it in a later time in our career.
You’ve worked hard to get there, and you’re now approaching album number ten.
Andrea: It’s always a pleasure. Obviously, we don’t base our judgement only on awards, but it’s always great to be recognised by other people. That your legacy is meaning something, that’s the most important reward.
Your last album ‘Black Anima’ was released in 2019; did you get much touring in behind it ahead of the pandemic?
Christina: We did one tour.
Andrea: We were able to do North American tour, one European tour, and one South American tour. That’s it.
Did you feel that album got its fair shake?
Andrea: No, no, definitely not.
Christina: No, not at all. There’s still a lot to be explored, also because fans loved it; not only a lot of old school fans, but we got a lot of new reactions from people that never heard Lacuna Coil before. Being around for a while, maybe they’re someone that has been like; “oh, Lacuna Coil, I’ve heard them but I’ve never heard their music”, so to see new people coming to the gigs, and lot of young kids finding out from maybe their brothers for the first time coming to the show, it was great.
Andrea: There was just one thing we noticed from the pandemic, that a lot of people have been playing with Spotify, and the music and all that stuff, and they found a lot more about the band just because of that, because they had a lot of time home, so they were just cruising around, browsing around. You listen to one band and then they recommend another one, and then it helps a lot getting the band known by a lot of people who maybe wouldn’t otherwise.
What can you tell us about the forthcoming album?
Christina: It’s going to be a new release of course this year, but it’s not album number ten. It’s a special project. We didn’t say much, and we’re not going to say it right now. I do have to be patient a little bit more. We’re going to be revealing something soon, you will hear something, you will see something new. We also have a lot of new material for album number ten, but we want to focus on this first.
What are your plans for live work this year?
Christina: So it’s going to be summer festival all around, and also a very special show in Milano called ‘Comalies’ because this is the [twentieth] anniversary of ‘Comalies’, so on this show we’re going to be playing the whole ‘Comalies’ in its entirety, on October 15th, an you’re going to hear ‘Comalies’ in a way you’ve never heard it before, plus other songs, of course, our most famous songs. It’s going to be a one-off show, so if you want to see it, if you want to hear it, you have to go to Milano, that’s the chance, because it’s not going to be streamed.
The hometown shows must be very special.
Christina: Well, they’re special, and probably they’re easier for us because I mean, you can at least take everything you want to bring; it’s easier to carry stuff. When you’re travelling abroad, it’s slightly more difficult to organise.
Andrea: I think after all these years we kind of feel home everywhere, because we’ve been so many times to the U.K., or America, or South America, so for us, it’s always about meeting the people that have been supporting the band for many years. Obviously, Milan is our hometown, but there’s so many shows around the world that we can consider also kind of our hometown.
Like Download Festival?
Christina: Like Download! Oh, we definitely feel at home here!
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