Zuberoa Aznarez & Gorka Elso

Diabulus In Musica

Spanish Symphonic Metal band DIABULUS IN MUSICA recently released their new album "Argia" on Napalm Records. Metal Temple's own David "Capt. Fury" Garlow was granted an interview via Skype with founding members Zuberoa Aznárez (Vocals) and Gorka Elso (Keyboards) to learn more about the band and the music. The band discusses the music, the new line-up after losing everyone but themselves, and the making of the video for the song "Inner Force"
By David "Capt. Fury" Garlow
May 8, 2014
Interview - Zuberoa Aznarez & Gorka Elso (Diabulus In Musica) interview
Let's start with how the band came to be, when did you get started?

Zuberoa - We started in 2006, so a long time ago. We have had some line-up changes, the former band members left last year so we have a new drummer, bass player, and guitar player but we both founded the band, so we can say we are the core of the band we are the main composers. So the band is still the same even though we have different guys playing.

*Author's note – Both are very easy going and quick to laugh. We had a laugh about they are not used to American accents which I added being a New Yorker probably made that even worse which we all had a good laugh about.
This is your 3th album, the band is new to me so how has it been going from 'Secrets' to today as far as seeing the band grow in popularity?

Zuberoa – We haven't noticed the change a lot because we always live in the present, we just focus on the music so we are not aware of the rest. I would say we have grown musically as a band. The first album was like a collection of songs I would say.

Gorka – The best hits of the rehearsal room! (We all laugh)

Zuberoa – We were still finding ourselves musically wise, we knew we wanted to do symphonic metal because we both come from the classical field and the metal field as well, of course. So we made it clear we were going to use those two elements, no more than that. The second album we tried to change a bit the way of writing, we started thinking about the story and then putting the music to the story, like a concept album. So the process was really different. We learned a lot when we recorded 'Secrets'. All that experience, we could use that. On this third album, we had to deal with crisis because the guys left, so we were alone from one day to the other. We didn't know what to do if we were going to continue with the band or just leave, we didn't know what to do. Finally, we decided to go on with the band. The concept of the new album is the resurrection after the bad moments and what we had to live last year. So, that is the difference between the three albums. The rest, as I said, we are focused on music so we don't know exactly what is happening out there! (Laughs)

You all sound very schooled with your instruments and talents, what are your backgrounds?

Zuberoa – I started to study music when I was eight years old, a little child, and my mother is a music teacher. She obligated me to go to the conservatory, which I really hated! (Laughs) I really love to sing and play my guitar, I invented my own songs as a child, but I hated studying music theory. As I grew up I started learning classical singing. That is my background academically, but I used to listen to metal quite a lot because my sister, who is six years older than me, she was a metalhead when she was a teenager (laughs) so I started to be a metalhead very early.

Gorka – I was also seven or eight years old when I started with the piano. My first exposure to metal music was when I was 16 or something like that.

Zuberoa – Too Late!

Gorka – Yes, too late! (We all laugh) But, I liked it a lot and started listening to the classics like Iron Maiden and Metallica. I first joined a metal band at 19 and at that time I loved the power metal and heavy metal. I don't study in the conservatory anymore as I had finished all my subjects, but I am still learning, I am always learning!

The vocals are very intense and your singer has a wonderful voice, can you talk about what your songs, is there a storyline or is each its own?

Zuberoa – Well, thank you very much for the compliment! Well, not exactly a story, the album is called "Argia" which in our language means light. It means light and also clear. The title refers to that situation I told before. Suddenly we had a very clear idea of what we had to do so that is why that is the title, it is light. For us, the path was very clear because we are musicians, we cannot live without music, it was a stupid idea for us to leave because we are the founders so we have to go on. If you look at the cover of the album, it is like a shipwreck, kind of like our situation and resurrection, it is very personal and our story. The songs are all related to this topic, there are four songs that speak to this and one thought led to the next and I started to think about human behavior and spirituality as well, so I think personal crisis made me write about many things, but all of them are related to our personal crisis these past two years.

The 4th track 'Furia de Libertad' is a beautiful wall of sound and features Ailyn Gimenez, can you tell me about that song and working with Ailyn?

Zuberoa – It was really nice working with her. We both are Spanish and we both also sing in English although she sings in a Norwegian band, she is leaving there now. We were thinking of writing something in Spanish but we didn't dare to do it before. With the first album I said, I don't know why, that Spanish would sound horrible in metal. I'm not used to listening to music in Spanish (Laughs) especially metal, it was really weird for me to write something metal in Spanish. I personally don't like the bands here forcing me to listen in Spanish, I don't know why? It's a personal thing! (Laughs) I have never imagined that I would write in Spanish. Then I started to write in many languages so I said why not Spanish? All the Latin American and Spanish bands were asking for a song in Spanish. When I started to write this song it had that flavor and it was in that moment when I realized that it would be cool to have Ailyn sing it with me here. She likes the band and said yes, it is cool because we have very different voices. She has a very sweet high voice and mine is lower so it is a nice mix.

"Spoilt Vampire" comes out with a heavy sound, a great rock song! Can you talk about that one?
(They both laugh)

Zuberoa – This song talks about a person we know. We were a bit disappointed, okay, very disappointed with that person (laughs) I kind of had a rage inside and I had to write a song just for, you know, therapy. Our guitar player wrote the riff and I said that is the one for my song. We wanted to shout about our rage at this person. I am a very kind person, but I needed to let it be known. I don't believe in violence, but I had to let it out in the music.

You made a video for "Inner Force," great song and video; can you talk about making the video?

Zuberoa – We wanted to do a video but you have to think of the song because of the length, this one is the shortest (laughs) it's not a very complicated song and was the best choice to do the video. When you talk to the production company they want three minutes! (Laughs). It was shot in a bunker that was built during the civil war in Spain and it was never used, they were afraid France was going to attack. They are exactly how they were built. It's really cool, very long tunnel and scary (laughs). We will probably do another video for "Spoilt Vampire" as well, not in the same place.

I see that you have played the "Metal Female Voices Fest" can you talk about playing that?

Zuberoa – It's very cool, you should go! It's a special relationship between bands, promoters, and fans there. You meet the bands and the fans in the same hotel. The stage is very big which is fine and in Belgium we bring a choir, only on Belgium though due to space. Not all the stages have the space required. So, we are going back for our fourth time there. We will be playing outside this time and it is very cool that people ask for us to be there again.

What tour plans are in place for you? Will we see you here in the USA?

Zuberoa – We would love to go there, but no money! (Laughs) Not a complete tour yet, it's difficult to do that by yourself because of money. Only the big bands can do it and if you want to play with them you have to pay, a lot. People want to see us in their country but they don't understand what goes into it and how much it costs. We have four countries right now.

Lastly, what would you like to say to the fans around the world?

Zuberoa – The same we say always, a very big thank you. Without the fans you are nothing. I want to meet all of them in their own countries. I am so grateful. I like to be in touch with them, I think they are the most important thing in music so, a big thank you.

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