SLEEPING ROMANCE are back with a new album. Reason enough for me to interview them. Anders Ekdahl ©2017
How important is the band’s name in giving out the right kind of vibe?
Federica: Probably it’s like the title of a movie: it has to be evocative and generate interest in the audience. It’s something that has to fit with the kind of music and the style of the band. We would be the same band with another name, we’ d make the same music and we’ d dress the same way but well band’s name it’s like your visiting card… what would you aspect from Sleeping Romance if our name was Cannibal corpse?
I wanted to start a band in the 80s but couldn’t find the right people to do so with. What was it that made you want to do the band?
Lorenzo: The thing that you have to reach is a project, and for this you have to write some good songs to get the curiosity of the musicians. I joined this band because Federico made me listen to some very good songs he wrote: if you have something to say, people will listen.
With so many genres and sub-genres of metal today what is your definition of the music you play?
Federico: Honestly we don’t like to give a definition on the music we play, we prefer to make it and to be ourself. We play metal because in our language we love to use heavy and distorted guitars, fast rhythms and dark atmospheres, but in the same time we love how the symphonic orchestra works with our music and how it give us more drama and more emphasis to our sounds. If you think we need a different definition to our music we are totally open to accept it, it means we are doing something different from the other bands.
How do you arrange the tracks? Is there a method to how you arrange the songs on a record?
Federico: The composition process needs a lot of time and different session before a song is being consider finished and ready to be recorded. First of all I start on the concept I want to express with the song: I analyze the emotions, the colors, the feelings I want to express with it, and then I start writing music. So I used to begin with a melody or a guitar riff that fits with the the concept and then I’ll build up the song from it. The most important thing in my composition process is to have something to talk about: it could be a story, images or just a feeling, but to compose music I need a concept. Each songs taken from Alba is composed in that way.
I am fascinated by how people can still come up with things that hasn’t been done before, chord structures that hasn’t been written, sentences that hasn’t been constructed before. Where do you find your inspiration to create?
-Federico: I think it is really hard to compose something “new”, something that hasn’t be written before or saying something that never been said. The most important thing, in my opinion, is to be honest with myself and never try to do something different just because I want to be different. In Alba you could find some “experimentation” I did: in “My Temptation” there is counterpart between Choir (male and female voices) and some different part in the structures; “Alba” was a sort of challenge for me because I strutted the song on Fibonacci serie and you’ll find it on numbers of notes and intervals on the main riffing, on the notes of the verses, on changing tunes and keys during the songs…
Inspiration is everywhere: I could find it in a book, in a movie, in a landscape or during a great conversation or listening music totally different from what I used to listen to. There is no special place or special moment, I think it is jus important to pay the right attention and you’ll get it, so I can say that every place or every moment could be special for inspiration.
How important is the graphic side of the band? How much thought goes into art work etc.?
Federica: This is important too! A band is like a factory in a way, so everything concearning the “product” you offer should be consistent with it. The graphic side must be inspired by the band’s music and lyrics contents; in this way it contributes to the whole drawning. I also think that symphonic metal in general is really “visual”, and stimulating from a graphic point of view, so it is a remarkable aspect.
I get the feeling that more and more metalheads too are just downloading single tracks. Is the album as relevant today as it was in the 70s and 80s? Is digital killing the album?
Lorenzo: Yes, if you have a very good album your life will last more than if you have only 1 or 2 killer songs. Digital has 2 sides: it killed the physical format, but with digital you can reach a lot of people very easily.
Are we killing our beloved metal scene by supporting digital downloading or can anything positive come from supporting single tracks and not albums? Will the fan as we know him/her be gone soon?
Lorenzo: Life in general is faster than before, so fans can change their ideas easily if you aren’t smart: you have to use single tracks for being more appreciated, but if you commit fully everytime you are writing a new album, then your goal will be reached. I’m a metalhead from when I can remember, and digital downloading only made my mind more open to new musical proposals.
Is there a scene to speak of for a band like yours? Where do you fit in?
Federica: I think there’s a wide audience for Sleeping Romance music. I saw a lot of different kind of listeners on our shows and one of the goal of Sleeping Romance music, in my opinion, is that is heavy but melodic too. it can reaches the metalheads but also those who usually like a different kind of music.
What does the future hold?
Federica: We have waited for this moment so long but we really don’t know what we’ll find after the release of the new album. Promotional tours of course, and we hope the audience would like “Alba” cause we put a lot of work and energy on it. We have grown, now we want to take this chance and prove that we deserve it, as individual and as band.