What is the theme or story behind ‘Alpha Noir?’
Alpha Noir brings a bright message within darkness. It deals with the idea that you shouldn’t resign to frustration and depression. We’re living in hard times in our country just because our political class screwed up big time, and now we have to pay for a mistake that wasn’t our own. I can’t accept that people bury their heads to the ground completely ignoring the ability to be constructive and value their own dignity just because some Yuppie that knows nothing about human values and culture rates our country as garbage. Alpha Noir is a statement, a message that hopefully can show people that when we fall, the best thing we can do is to rise up again and start everything again even if it has to be from the scratch as the lyrics express quite clear…”We want a new world!… Alpha noir our truth, our code!
What constitutes as “dark metal,” and how does ‘Alpha Noir’ fit this category?
Fernando: I believe there is a fine balance you have to reach when you want to be worthy of the dark metal category. I believe many bands just focus on the contrast between singers and allow themselves to go on an endless song structure missing the point. For us, Moonspell, dark metal has always to rely in that capacity of creating heaviness, something that goes straight into the heart, almost physical while letting the atmosphere flow in a more spiritual path,thus covering the solar, the Apollonian vertigo that makes you love yourself and aim higher at all times without resting until you have reached your purpose; and of course, the lunar part, where it’s night, things are more frail and more revealing. Like an arena where you battle, that’s Alpha Noir, the healing room, the place you link your wounds is Omega White and Dark Metal is the soundtrack to this double set of emotions.
Are there any specific influences that fed into this album?
Yes… all that you can imagine. We like Metal and Dark music in general and that is what make us the band we are. You can find Thrash Metal inspired riffs combined with Gothic atmospheres with a black metal twist, or you can listen to a classic rock vibe, blended with a more avant-garde direction. With us anything is possible, as long as it brings our own signature, and that is the nature of Moonspell… unity in diversity… all Dark, of course.
Twenty years into the bands career is it difficult to ignite the spark and passion of the early years and maintain such a high energy level?
As long as you believe in what you are doing, there’s nothing that will hold you from following your own path. For us, keeping Moonspell alive is way more than playing in a band, selling records and partying all the time. We do believe in our message and we think it is very important to transmit our thoughts about life to whoever listens to us. Since we are obsessed with art by itself, we’ll always try to reinvent our own art and try to come up with something new because that is the point of being creative. That being said, I believe that as long we think this way, fuel to keep Moonspell alive with the passion you’ve mentioned previously is something it will never lack.
At this point in you illustrious career what does Moonspell mean to you? Is slowing down in the cards?
Moonspell is the lifestyle we all choose. It gives us the opportunity to fit in a world where we fell unadjusted. We can fulfill our passion to art, pay tribute to other unadjusted people that offered us something to fight for thanks to their artistry, and that makes us somehow…more refined and better individuals.
Fernando, you have such a powerful and distinct vocal style paired with a deep soft croon. What influenced your style of singing?
Fernando: Thanks! Many singers have influenced me. Deep baritones like Peter Steele or Black Metal legends like Quorthon from Bathory. In the end all singers who have a heart and are meaningful when they sing their own lyrics.
Let’s get to the heart of the matter. Are you werewolves?
I guess we all have to be werewolves sometimes. Who never felt the need for hunting?
Who would win in a battle between werewolves and vampires?
Hopefully none would. Otherwise the movie industry will have a problem.
What can first time listeners expect from the new material?
I like to believe that we are delivering to our fans Moonspell at its best. After several years of experimentation and trial and error, we’ve came up with something that at least ourselves can’t say a less positive thing about it. It is indeed the record we wanted to do, and I like to believe that we haven’t failed doing so. It is hard to tell if this is our best record ever or not because our fans will have quite an important word on it. But one thing is for sure… We are very fulfilled with this record. We exorcised everything we wanted to, there’s nothing left to be said and exposed lyrically and musically. Expect nothing but a very honest album.
What brought on the decision to do a double album?
Maybe because we’re too much of schizophrenic band. We do like most kinds of Metal and Dark music in general and that is what makes us sound the way we do. We have songs that are indeed heavy and aggressive but at the same time we also have very atmospheric and moody songs, being that, makes it hard to compose an homogeneous album, which was the direction we aimed for when we decided to write Night Eternal’s successor. Since it’s in our nature to write these two kinds of songs, and trust me…there’s nothing that can be done about it, we thought the better idea would be to separate waters and make not only one, but two homogeneous albums. We found it very logical to follow this path because, then, we could write a heavy album that wouldn’t be compromised by a soft song and an atmospheric and introspective album without any sudden discharge of brutality during it’s course. Instead of forcing people to go right and left at the same time, we’d rather let the listener choose which path to follow.
How does ‘Omega White’ differ from ‘Alpha Noir?’
Even if both soundscapes differ from each other, our signature is there. Martial artists emphasize that when you breathe in, you’re in a Ying state and when you breathe out, you’re in a Yang state and this is how I see both records. Alpha Noir is an explosive album that exhales from our thoughts, frustrations and anger which makes it Yang, while Omega White deals with what comes inwards and it’s impact on our intimacy making it a Ying album. Together they totally complement each other, like night and day, black and white, man and woman , sun and moon, pain and joy… Ying and Yang. It is the relation between both states that balances everything and as a consequence creates life.
Name one thing that even the most die hard Moonspell fan still may not know about the band.
Perhaps… nobody knows that Fernando could already read before he went to school.
What does the future hold for Moonspell?
We have a lot of shows already confirmed till the end of the year. After our release party on May 12 in Lisbon, we’ll be quite busy doing several summer festivals, and in the winter we’ll have a European tour together with the band PAIN. We are also confirmed in the Barge to Hell Festival which will be hosted on a cruise ship to the Bahamas. I smell party coming towards us.
Thank you so much for taking time to answer questions for Metal Delirium. We are genuinely huge fans and love the new album.
I am actually the one who’s thankful. Thank you for supporting us and keeping the interest in Moonspell alive. Hope to meet you soon.