Weeping Silence introduce their genre, gear and vocal health tips.
We interviewed Diane Camenzuli, lead singer of Weeping Silence to learn more about the niche Gothic-Doom Metal band genre.
What makes your music and performance style stand out from the crowd?
I sing in a Gothic-Doom Metal band, so the genre is a niche under the enormous umbrella of music. The music we play and our performances are quite emotional and intense. I use different vocal techniques and styles of singing.
Weeping Silence performing ‘Ivy Thorns Upon The Barrow’ from their new album ‘Opus IV Oblivion’:
A performance FAIL?
I’ve had some funny experiences on stage, such as nearly tripping over a wire with 6-inch high heels and ending with a mouthful of hair after headbanging.
A performance SUCCESS?
One of our best performances was during ‘Respect for Metal’ in Antwerp, Belgium. We played just before Therion – a band that we really look up to – and people really enjoyed the show.
Biggest challenge to breaking out and sharing your music with new people?
Promotion uses a lot of energy and time. In the band we all work very hard to promote the band as much as possible in several ways including social media, our website, interviews, articles and blogs, reviews etc. To answer your question I think the biggest challenge is financial.
You have recently released your fourth album, Opus IV Oblivion. How do you kickstart the creative process until you have a complete song?
The songs usually originate from an idea, for example someone comes with a motif and we evolve it together. When Dario and myself get the gist of it, we discuss the appropriate set of lyrics according to the mood and progression of the instrumental track. Usually that is how it works.
When not making albums, you host a metal festival on the island of Malta…
Yes, Weeping Silence hosts a festival called Metal over Malta, in a place called Chateaux Buskett.
This was our second year and we hosted bands from several genres including Gothic Doom, Atmospheric Avante Garde, Progressive, Gothic Rock and Death Metal.
Bands included Septicflesh and The Foreshadowing, Shores of Null, Thurisaz, Apparition, Weeping Silence, Martyrium, Viper Soup Complex, Eyes Wide Open, Victims of Creation, and Until Rain.
Most important lesson you have learned about vocal health?
This is the ultimate question a singer should know how to answer. One needs to be fit physically, mentally, and socially:
- Physically – A good diet is important to maintain the vocal mechanism working at its optimum, especially when it comes to water and protein. For example, working out your vocal chord muscles involves protein synthesis, the same as building other kind of muscles in your body. Having a trained body to sustain the physical stress singing involves is also important. Training the core muscles is essential to have a system that supports the lungs well. Stamina including lung capacity is also essential.
- Mentally – Being tired or not in the mood to perform (e.g. dealing with personal problems, mental illnesses, receiving bad news etc) shows easily in a performance, as the singer herself or himself is the instrument. One needs to transmit the energy to others in the way the band would like to express itself. Thus one needs to be in control of his/ her emotional states and learn how to be bigger than the latter.
- Socially – How we interact with other people comes into play easily on stage, since a singer needs to interact with the audience. One cannot pretend to perform successfully without any kind of interaction and thus singers need to learn how to energise the crowd. Being an artist involves a lot of personal growth and strength.
One influential singer, and what it is that makes them stand out to you?
Loreena McKennitt. She is a musician, composer, harpist, accordionist and pianist that does Celtic and Middle Eastern themes. Her beautiful bel canto soprano singing is what inspired me most to continue this journey. Her voice tone is beautiful and puts me in another world of comfort and love. Her voice is alive, full of emotions and I guess she was one of the many artists that influenced me in my live performances and music compositions.
A few ingredients of a memorable vocal performance?
Hard work, physical training, willpower, confidence, fun, passion and maybe a couple of beers after the show with the fans.
Weeping Silence was formed in 1998 as an atmospheric doom metal act. Over the years Weeping Silence appeared on-stage at several festivals and concerts. In 2013 Weeping Silence was nominated for the ‘Best Heavy Metal Band’ award in the national Malta Music Awards (MMAs), and also won the ‘Best Band of the Year 2012’ in the Female Metal Webzine awards. They have released 4 albums, their most recent ‘Opus IV Oblivion’ being released at the end of last year.