Primordium is the second album from Gibraltar-based Angelwings. The symphonic metal band had several lineup changes from their debut. Frontwoman Divi Cano gives us the lowdown on the new members, the new album, her musical background, the metal scene (or lack thereof) in Gibraltar and other topics.
Chad Bowar: You had a lot of lineup changes since your debut album. How did that affect the songwriting process for Primordium?
Divi Cano: Actually, the changes made turned out to be a very positive thing for the band. The songwriting only slowed down while we were looking for new members but when Angelwings as we are today was finally formed, we had found amazing people with the same passion and goals and from here we started forming a bond which made the writing process really flow like never before. It’s been a very memorable time for all of us. Making our album Primordium has been a very exciting experience and with everyone’s personal tastes in music we have created something that we consider to be quite unique and very magical.
What will be your strongest memory of the recording of the album?
For me it’s two main things I will remember most: first; our hard work, teamwork, our love for the music and downright dedication and secondly; our time bonding, our laughs, our conversations, me cooking for the guys and going on our midnight walks together to sit and watch the stars. That was priceless to me. Those memories will never fade. I will definitely remember this experience for the rest of my life.
How did the pandemic affect the process?
It definitely slowed down our recording process, so much so that we jumped at the first opportunity to travel in August 2020 to record in France at Tower Studios with the master himself, Brett Caldas-Lima. Things have been tough for all musicians, some more than others but we’ve all felt the struggle. I think everyone will agree with me when I say that we are all ready to get back to some kind of normality.
How has the band’s sound evolved from The Edge Of Innocence?
The first album was very much keyboard oriented and also had a much calmer vibe to it (for the most part) but it was decided from very early on, that for our next album there would be more guitars involved and that it would definitely take a much more progressive approach. There were so many areas to explore musically, every musician contributed to a wealth of ideas that we worked on with a passion. We have bonded as a team perfectly and evolved very naturally.
What’s the album’s lyrical concept?
I always love answering this question because it’s my greatest passion. I never intended for things to unravel the way they did for me lyrically but it all came out very instinctively and anything else would’ve not felt right to me. I always knew I wanted to feel close to my lyrics and write what I know and what I’ve experienced but I didn’t want to be so forward and open about it. I have a love for stories of mythology and when I came across Lilith, the connection was undeniable. Throughout both albums Lilith is basically the storyteller. With Primordium, we go back to the beginning, back to the creation of life, of Lilith herself, of her escape from her creator and the man made for her. It tells of her first battles, the struggles she had to leave behind and the changes she had to make to get where she is today. I think that in a way, it’s something we can all relate to in one way or another but the concept lyrics opens up our imagination to much more and I love that.
What are your goals and expectations for the album?
Our goals at the moment are to play live as much as we can and to share our music with as many countries possible in Europe and beyond. That is definitely any band’s dream and from the start we have always been so grateful to every new fan, every new follower and lover of our music. We are also preparing a nice merchandise package and the album in vinyl. A nice surprise for our longtime fans, something special to look forward to for sure!
What has been your most memorable Angelwings live show?
If I had to pick just one, I think for me it was our time in Germany/Münster for the “Das Schloss Rockt.” Such great memories there, meeting fans, our time meeting Chris, too who gave us this wonderful opportunity to perform and oh my gosh, that awesome crowd! We are very grateful to have had this rocking opportunity!
When do you plan to resume playing shows?
We are currently exploring all options to gig all around Europe as soon as possible but obviously things are still held up and difficult due to Covid. We shall inform via social media as soon as possible with any news!
How did you get started in music?
I come from a very musical family, so the love of music is definitely in my genes! And as a child I started with my church choir and things started developing from there. I got involved in as many things musical that I could growing up, I’ve been in several choirs and bands. I’ve had a lot of experience singing in public since a very young age and I’ve always known that all I wanted to do is sing and write my own songs. I can proudly say I am finally living that dream, I get to do that now, I get to be myself and I couldn’t ask for more.
Who were your early influences and inspirations?
It starts with my family and their influences. My mum really got me into Celine Dion and she inspired me to want to develop my singing. I also loved and was very inspired by Pink Floyd and Marillion, but my personal favorites growing up were and still are Avril Lavigne and Amy Lee – top influences for me to this day.
What was the first metal concert you attended?
To be honest my memory is absolutely terrible and I’ve been to so many metal gigs, concerts and festivals that I can’t remember which one was which or when but the closest memory to one of my first metal concerts is Slipknot and Slayer. I remember that one because it was the first time I ever crowd surfed! Unwillingly may I add, but it was certainly a lot of fun! But I learned the hard way why they ask you to take any spiked bracelets off at the door! My body was full of scratches, so you can imagine why I can remember this concert in particular! The mosh pit was also all kinds of crazy too!
How is the metal scene in Gibraltar?
To be honest, Gibraltar doesn’t really have much of a metal scene but we do have a rock club “Rock on the Rock,” a favorite place for people like me who love rock and metal here and they are quite open to other types of music there too. It’s quite diverse and inclusive and one of the many reasons we love the place so much.
What are some of your non-musical interests and hobbies?
I actually have many interests and hobbies but just to mention a few: I love to read when I can, my favorite genres have to be thriller/mystery/fantasy. I also like to play video games, first player games preferably and also mostly fantasy or horror. I practice yoga and meditation at home and I’ve been a model for as long as I can remember now.
What’s currently in your heavy musical rotation?
This is literally the order of bands in my playlist at the moment: Evanescence, Amaranthe, Infected Rain, Nightwish, Spineshank, Metallica and In this Moment.
Anything else you’d like to mention or promote?
Our vinyl version of the album together with more music videos and new merchandise is something I really look forward to sharing with you all. Stay tuned via our social media pages for announcements!
(interview published June 18, 2021)