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IRIDIO (VALENTINA/FRANZ)

HELLO VALENTINA/ FRANZ! HOW ARE YOU? WHERE ARE YOU? Hi!! We are fine, thank you. We are answering your questions from our home in Milano, Italy. „WAVES OF LIFE“ IS OUT AND VERY IMPRESSIVE. ARE YOU CONTENT WITH EVERYTHING? HOW ARE YOUR FEELINGS NOW AFTER WORK IS DONE? We are very happy and satisfied. It was a hard and long work but it came out the way we wanted to. Now we really hope that people will like it as much as we do! AS YOU ARE A QUITE NEW BAND IN THE ALTERNATIVE SCENE COULD YOU PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO OUR READERS?! WHAT DOES THE NAME “IRIDIO” MEAN TO YOU? Well, we’ve played many kinds of music and we’ve been members of many bands from heavy metal to dance music. Valentina also sang in a classical choir as a soprano and Franz has always dealt with sound engineering. We met back in 1998… in a rehearsal room where we were playing with our respective bands! For some years we kept on playing separately. We started thinking of making music together in 2001 and that’s how “Iridio” was born. Iridio is a chemical element: it is heavy, brittle, white metal. The origin of the name comes from the Latin word iris, meaning rainbow, because its salts are highly coloured. We decided to call our project “Iridio” because it’s a very rare material brought down by meteorites and cosmic dusts that fall on earth and because of the meaning of the word it comes from. We think that this name can evocate a new dimension; something different from reality… a “magic world” (and that’s what we try to create with our music!)… AND HOW DID YOUR COLLABORATION WITH “STANDING STONES” START? HAVE THERE BEEN MANY LABEL OFFERS? We recorded the song “The Windy Shore” in 2002 and we sent it to many labels (especially labels dealing with folk and Celtic music) all over Europe. Many of them answered and asked for some further material. At the same time I also sent the material to Dragonheart, an Italian label I had already worked with. After some months we got some offers but we decided to sign for Dragonheart: they believed so much in Iridio that they even created a new label called Standing Stones to release and promote our album! THE ARTWORK OF YOUR ALBUM/ WEBSITE IS VERY COLOURFUL AND DREAMLIKE. WHY DID YOU CHOSE THIS STYLE? DON’T YOU THINK A MORE BLACK/ WHITE APPROACH WOULD FIT YOUR MUSIC BETTER? We wanted to create a “new dimension” and a dreamlike atmosphere both with music and artwork. Our songs speak about feelings and emotions and so we thought that a colourful artwork could fit our music well: there’s a connection between colours and feelings, just like between music and feelings. That’s why we used all those springtime like colours and all that light. However we know that sometimes black and white can awake even stronger emotions than colours (think about some old movies) and so maybe next time we’ll try this solution! WHICH LYRICAL CONCEPT STANDS BEHIND “WAVES OF LIFE”? Well, almost all the songs speak about love… Love for nature that can give answers to our deepest questions like in the songs “The Windy Shore” and “Night Prayer”, love for children who are the future of the world and must always be helped and respected like in “New World Child”, love for a man or a woman like in “Silent Song”, “My Sweet Leonore” and “Moondust”. My (dream)world speaks about a different theme: it’s a reflection on the thin line that divides dream from reality… Sometimes these two dimension seem to be blended and you don’t understand if what’s happening is real or if you’re dreaming… DO YOU FEEL INFLUENCED BY ARTISTS LIKE DEAD CAN DANCE? We are influenced by artists like Loreena McKennit, Enya, Madonna, The Chieftains and other folk musicians and, of course, electronic and classical music in general. We like Dead Can Dance and so we may be influenced by them too. However the music we listen to can be considered as an indirect influence because we try hard to create our own sound. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR GENRE IN YOUR OWN WORDS? DO YOU FEEL YOU BELONG TO THE SO CALLED “GOTHIC” MOVEMENT? We think it’s very hard to find a definition for our music because it’s made of many different styles and atmospheres and we think we don’t belong to any particular movement. However there are two words that can describe Waves Of Life quite well and they are “emotional” and “evocative”. We think (and we hope!) that our music can create a “different world”, far away from everyday life, a world made of feelings that is able to awake deep emotions inside the people’s hearts. YOU SEEM TO BE STRONGLY INTERESTED IN CELTIC HISTORY? WHAT IS SO FASCINATING ABOUT IT? DO YOU HAVE A LARGE COLLECTION OF BOOKS? Oh, yes, we love Celtic culture and, of course, we’ve got many books and many records! Actually we can’t say where this interest comes from… we discovered it many years ago and we soon fell in love with it! TO VALENTINA: YOU LIKE COOKING AND SLEEPING – DO YOU HAVE ENOUGH TIME FOR THESE “HOBBIES” WITH ALL THE MUSIC GOING AROUND? AND YOU HAVE FORMERLY BEEN IN A HEAVY METAL BAND, DO YOU STILL LIKE THIS STUFF (MAYBE NIGHTWISH/ WITHIN TEMPTATION)? ARE THERE ANY HEAVY METAL INFLUENCES IN THE IRIDIO SONGS? There are no metal influences in Iridio at all! In the past I was a real heavy metal fan but then I’ve become a bit tired of that sound. However I still listen to some metal bands like Nightwish and In Flames. You’re right, I don’t have much free time for my hobbies: I have also some dance music projects and I go to university… I focus on them when I’m on holiday!! TO FRANZ: WHAT IS A “STRÜDEL”??? AND AS I HAVE READ THAT YOU ARE A TECHNIQUE FAN – DO YOU OWN A RECORDING STUDIO FOR YOUR OWN? AND DO YOU COLLECT KEYBOARD DEVICES? AND WHICH SOUNDTRACKS OF ENNIO MORRICONE DO YOU LIKE BEST? Well, a Strüdel is a typical cake made with apples and cinnamon that you can eat in the Dolomiten mountains, in the very North of Italy close to the boundary with Austria. Yes, I own a recording studio. It’s called Apeiron and that’s where I recorded Waves Of Life. I’m very fond of synths and I try to collect them! I like all the works by Morricone: he’s a genius and I think that part of the success that those movies achieved is due to his soundtracks! ARE ALL INSTRUMENTS LIKE HARP OR THE PIANO CREATED BY SYNTHESIZERS OR DID YOU HAVE GUEST MUSICIANS? We had some guest musicians who played harp, violin, mandolin, flute, oboe, oud (a sort of oriental lute) and guitar. The piano was played by Franz. Acoustic instruments are blended with modern sounds and electronic grooves in order to create a synthesis of past and present. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE ITALIAN GOTHIC/ NEOCLASSICAL SCENE? DO YOU KNOW OTHER ACTS PERSONALLY LIKE ENSOPH, DER EREMIT, KIRLIAN CAMERA, AIN SOPH OR MAYBE EVEN GOBLIN? We listen to Ataraxia and Kirlian Camera and we really like Goblin. However we are not into the “gothic/ neoclassic scene” that much… We come from folk and traditional music like The Chieftains and Altan and from electronic music like The Chemical Brothers, Leftfield or Aphex Twin! However we often go to “gothic discos” where they play everything from VNV Nation to Rammstein and we really like that sound! IS IT DIFFICULT TO BE “DIFFERENT” IN BERLUSCONIS ITALY? IS THERE ANY MEDIA COVERAGE OF ALTERNATE LIFESTYLE? To be honest there was almost no media coverage of alternative lifestyle even before Berlusconi!! We are really angry because we know that many countries in Europe have radios and TV channels that support alternative and underground music. Someone tried to do the same here but they all failed after a short time… We hope that the new digital television and via satellite channels will give us the chance to create new and alternative networks. Luckily we’ve got many big magazines and webzines that deal with alternative music! HAVE YOU EVER PLAYED LIVE WITH IRIDIO? OR DO YOU HAVE PLANS TO DO SO IN THE NEAR FUTURE? At the beginning “Iridio” was supposed to be just a studio project but now we are considering the opportunity to play live. We’d like to make a complex show made of music, dance and scenography… maybe in theatres… We’ll let you know AND HAVE YOU EVER VISITED GERMANY? MAYBE THE WAVE GOTIK TREFFEN IN LEIPZIG? WHICH GERMAN MUSICIANS DO YOU LIKE? Franz: I’ve never been to Germany yet but I’d really like to. I love R. Wagner! He’s one of the greatest composers of all times! We’d really like to visit the Wave Gotik Treffen in Leipzig… It’s a very famous event and many Italian people go there every year. Maybe we’ll go this year! Valentina: I’ve been to Rothenburg and to Heidelberg (two wonderful places!!). I feel very close to the culture of the whole German speaking area: I’ve studied German language and literature for many years at school and many of my favourite writers (Rilke, T. Mann,…), painters (Klimt, Schiele,… ) and musicians (Stockhausen above all), come from Germany or from Austria. …Ich kann auch ein wenig Deutsch sprechen!! 🙂 ANY LAST WORDS? Well, we invite you to visit our website at www.iridiomusic.com and don’t forget to sign our guestbook! THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR SHARING YOUR TIME AND GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR STRONG EFFORT. We’d like to thank you for this interview and also the readers of musik.terrorverlag for reading it. We say goodbye with the hope that our music will awake your emotions…

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