Mark Holmes of Metal Discovery recently conducted an interview with Norwegian singer Liv Kristine Espenaes Krull (LEAVES' EYES, ex-THEATRE OF TRAGEDY). A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
As a whole, I think [LEAVES' EYES' "Symphonies Of The Night" is] probably the most diverse work you've released to date in terms of all the different styles and feelings within the songs. Is that something you'd agree with?
Liv: Well, I feel very honored; thank you very much for your compliment. I'll definitely sleep tight tonight! [laughs] With LEAVES' EYES, we have a ten-year anniversary this year and it just feels very comfortable where we are standing right now. There is everything on this album. The creative process was very intense, to be honest. We just started from somewhere and we just went with the creative flow. And I just told Thorsten, my guitar player, and Alexander, my husband, that, Okay, just do whatever you like." I mean, some of us have been around for almost twenty years now and we've gathered so much experience, live and in the studio, so I just told them, "Bring it all, whatever you like, and then we'll see what happens." It feels great to release "Symphonies Of The Night", there's just everything on this album; everything I'd hoped and wished for.
Metal Discovery: The last one, "Meredead", had that heavy folk influence running throughout most of the album, but it's not so prominent on "Symphonies Of The Night", only with tracks like "Glaswintha". Was it important for you to carry on progressing your sound rather than repeat what you'd already done?
Liv: Yes, definitely. We never plan anything, and it was a very open-minded composing process and recording process as well, so we just start from somewhere and see what happens. Even the very early days of LEAVES' EYES, back in 2003 when the band was formed, we didn't really have a clear plan where we wanted to be with our first album. I think it's still a very refreshing album and there is some kind of magic on "Lovelorn". And then, when you listen to ["Symphonies Of The Night", it's still a very clear LEAVES' EYES sound, especially through the guitars. Thorsten has got magic fingers! He is fantastic on all these string instruments. I don't feel like doing something very revolutionary or going with the flow of many other bands. I see when you look to the left or look to the right in the genre of female-fronted metal bands, most of them tend to go with commercial flow which I do not intend to do whatsoever. I want to stay in my own genre, in my own house! [laughs]
Metal Discovery: Personally, I would say it's your most powerful vocal performance to date, so do you always work at pushing your voice to new heights, and exploring and finding new strengths in your vocals?
Liv: I definitely do but, do you know, for me, it's a privilege to be a full-time musician; a full-time composer and singer. I never ever studied music — reading notes is something I'm just not able to do… [laughs] So it's something I still will have to learn some day, when I have the time, to sit down and study music and take singing lessons. So singing is something which has always been there; a gift I've been born with… if you don't mind me calling it a gift. It's been there all the time. When I was very little, I thought that every human being has a great voice, which is not really reality! [laughs] So yeah, I'm equipped with something very special and I take a lot of pleasure in trying out new singing techniques, just by listening to other female singers and even male singers. And I have a very good friend, her name is Maite Itoiz, and she is the female singer of ELFENTHAL, and she has been studying music for years. She comes from a family with a huge musical background, and she's the wife of John Kelly from THE KELLY FAMILY. We are very close friends and she asked me if I would like to know some dirty tricks and I said, "Yes, come on, give me the dirty tricks!" We just talked for an hour and she listened to me, so that gives me so much more. That was exactly what I needed and that was after the "Meredead" production. Maite Itoiz is also one of the guests on the "Meredead" album. So yeah, sometimes things just happen and that's exactly what you need. I take influence and experience from here and there, and I'm always looking for new challenges. And I think that live experience is of vital importance. If you're able to do what you do in the studio, doing it live as well, that's a very important thing. For me, it's a very important thing! [laughs]
Read the entire interview at Metal Discovery.