DELAIN Leader Admits 'There Are Similarities' Between Voices Of Band's Current And Former Singers
February 19, 2023
In a new interview with FaceCulture, DELAIN founder, songwriter and keyboardist Martijn Westerholt spoke about the differences in the singing approach of the band's new frontwoman Diana Leah and that of her predecessor, Charlotte Wessels. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Well, first of all, [Diana's] voice. I like her character. [She has] so much control, so much control… It's also a very friendly voice. And [when I first heard her singing], I could imagine that on DELAIN music. And then I got back the material later, and I was actually astonished and surprised how much it fitted. [Someone said] she has a very similar voice to Charlotte, and partially I totally agree with that; there are some characteristics that are similar. But I also think that people didn't… We have released three singles [with Diana so far], and [people] have not heard her complete capacity in singing. She's very good with soft versus power, [the] contrast [between the two]."
Elaborating on what sets the two vocalists apart, Martijn said: "Charlotte is more rough, which gives Charlotte a lot of character. It's a more rough voice, and that's not a negative thing; no, on the contrary, that gives it a certain quality and character. Diana is more refined. And that makes it different. So I'm totally not saying that, 'Oh, this one is better' or 'That one is better' — no — but it is different. And, of course, indeed, there are also similarities."
DELAIN's first album with Leah, "Dark Waters", arrived on February 10 via Napalm Records.
In addition to Westerholt and Leah, the band's current lineup includes original guitarist Ronald Landa and drummer Sander Zoer, along with bassist Ludovico Cioffi.
The new DELAIN lineup made its official live debut last August at the Riverside festival in Aarburg, Switzerland.
Regarding how she joined the long-running Dutch metal act, Leah previously said: "It's really simple, actually. I knew they were looking for a singer so I just left a comment on their Instagram page. So a couple of days later I received an e-mail from Martijn, and we talked a bit about how I could audition and he sent me some material that I could sing on. And the rest is history."
Asked how she decided to sing in a metal band, the 32-year-old Diana said: "Well, I've always wanted to sing in a metal band. It was really my desire to do it. In fact, I did sing in a couple of rock bands, but it wasn't really heavy music, which I loved at the time. It was really hard to find the right people to form a band with and also to get along together and all that. But I've always wanted to be in a metal band. Always."
Leah also talked a bit about her background, saying: "I was born in Romania, in a city called Alba Iulia. It's in the middle of Transylvania. And then I moved to Italy when I was 15, and I lived in Italy for, I think, 10 years or something. And then I moved to Canada, in Ottawa, and I lived there for five years. And then I came back to Italy. And now I currently live in Italy, near Torino, so up north."
In February 2021, Westerholt announced the dissolution of DELAIN's previous lineup. At the time, he explained: "For the last year or so, the collaboration within the band ceased to work as well as it once had. Some of us were no longer happy with the current roles in the band. We all tried very hard to find a solution for over a year, but sadly we were unable to find one. As a result, we will all be going our own ways and pursuing our own endeavors."
Wessels said about her departure: "I know that you might have questions about the 'why' in all of this. I fully understand and respect that. Simply put, it is the sad conclusion of more than a year of trying to find solutions to built up grievances. Part of me feels like I'm letting all of you down, I'd like you to know that this decision was not taken lightly and I apologize to those of you who had high hopes of seeing all of us together live on stage again after lockdown. Until recently, I thought this might still be in the cards for us as well."
In September 2022, Charlotte was asked in an interview with Spain's The Metal Circus TV how she felt about the fact that DELAIN recently made a comeback with a new lineup. Wessels said: "I'm trying not to engage with it too much, honestly. I've seen positive responses about it, which I think is good. But I do try to keep some distance and just focus on what I'm doing rather than checking that out, because I still don't feel like that will make me happier per se."
DELAIN's sixth full-length album, the Westerholt-produced "Apocalypse & Chill", was released in February 2020 via Napalm Records.
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