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Anneke Van Giersbergen (Agua De Annique)

Interview with Anneke Van Giersbergen from Agua De Annique
by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos at 08 March 2009, 6:49 PM

Anneke visited Greece for a couple of shows that -as it turned- were very successful. Metal Temple did not lose the chance to have another most pleasant discussion with the always sweet and friendly singer.

Interview with: Anneke Van Giersbergen from AGUA DE ANNIQUE

 How were the previous Greek shows?

They were great! You know it was the first time for me after THE GATHERING. Of course, then were the acoustic shows but this time I came with my full band. Actually, with THE GATHERING we stayed in this hotel and this brings back a lot of good memories.

But this time is actually new because I am here with different music and band so I don't know what to expect.

 You have built a strong relation with the Greek audience…

Yeah in fact I have! We feel very close with them. Anyway I always feel a little bit anxious before the show even though I know it will be good!


 So, what is the story with the Latin American tour; how did the fans convince you to book some days there?

Well, they did not have to convince me (laughs). The fans wanted me to go there, but the promoters had second thoughts about it. And I think this was expected since I made this change towards Rock. I think that I need a very good second album to let people know what I am doing. I have released Pure Air but it is a special acoustic album; the next one will be a Rock one!

 Well, we will talk about this later on. How do you feel that the fans are still with you despite the fact that you left the pure Metal sound?

I believe that THE GATHERING fans were open minded and not just for the Metal scene. They were growing with us and I think they jumped to AGUA DE ANNIQUE quite easily. Some people after my departure said that now we have two bands to follow and that's the best thing.

 So, are the rest of the shows acoustic?

No. The think is that we can do both. If a country wants us acoustic then we can do it! We have two albums -one acoustic and one rock- so we have two live profiles.

 What do you prefer?

This is a good question actually. The two shows are very different. The acoustic shows are quite, really nice, 'warm' and very intimate; I like them but on the other hand you have the Rock one that are full of energy! So, I cannot choose one or the other; it's more of a balance I think.

Yeah I agree with you. Let's talk about the latest album. How did you decide to do a full acoustic album?

And that's what it is; a full acoustic album! Well, I needed to do something special with people I have worked with the last years. After I have left THE GATHERING everyone thought that I would have a lot of free time; so I started having phone calls about possible co-operations and so I did! Then I thought that I should call them back and to make a really special album. While we were recording I felt that it was turning to be very 'quite' and soft; so I started thinking whether the fans will like it. But on the other hand there will always be people who will like and people who won't like your work…

(interrupting) yeah but you have to satisfy yourself first…

Exactly, but it turned to be really good because I am getting very positive feedback in this.

 In the cover artwork of the album there is your name first and below the AGUA DE ANNIQUE moniker. So, can we say that this a project or even a solo album?

I could not name it an AGUA DE ANNIQUE because there are so many guest artists. I would have to include all their names in the cover (laughs). The next album will definitely have the AGUA DE ANNIQUE name because we will play all the songs.

I think in Pure Air you kind of revealed your vocal abilities something like expanding your range. Did this happen on purpose?

You know what, this was not done intentionally. I mean I have been doing all this acoustic shows especially in Holland and the way I sung on Pure Air came naturally for me. I just had to put on the record what I was doing on the live shows. It was a logical step and I never felt or think to reveal something.

 I am asking this because I was wondering if you are feeling more 'free' in an artistic way than you did when you were with THE GATHERING. You had to sing in a specific way then…

The think is that now what I am thinking I can do. And that's a really nice feeling. With THE GATHERING we were five people so I could not do what I was thinking. We were working together mixing all our ideas. And this was why the THE GATHERING sound was so rich. We were building and mixing all our different ideas. Now I can do everything by myself; from the music to the artwork of the album.

What about writing music? Are you following what your heart is telling or you have something specific in your mind?

No, I just follow my heart. I am always writing music that progresses with time. For example I was writing a song and when I started writing the lyrics they came in Dutch. So now I have seven Dutch songs and I am thinking of making an album with those.

Will you release them as AGUA DE ANNIQUE?

I think as Anneke or maybe with a different band. I don't really know. After all this will be next year. First comes the AGUA DE ANNIQUE album and then will see. I have a lot of ideas.

 How did you decide to do a cover on Alanis Morrisetie's Ironic? By the way, I believe that you sing it way better than the original.

Whoah, that's a big compliment; thank you. All the songs in the album are a product of a collaboration or are a part of a project. Ironic was recorded for a radio show where Dutch artists were performing Alanis's songs. So, I did Ironic with an all star band and then I thought making in also acoustic.

 So, what is next for AGUA DE ANNIQUE? The Rock album?

Yeah, we are planning to record it this summer and maybe release it the fall. This is my main goal for this year, the Rock album…

(interrupting) when you say 'Rock,' what do you mean?

Mmmm Good question! Something like the Air album. Something like New Rock or heavy Pop.

 Can we use the 'Pop' word in a metal webzine?

(laughs) If you use it carefully… Well, you know where I was and where I am going. It will be dark and also romantic with Rock, Pop and Doom elements. After all these are my roots. This album will be more 'steady' since we are working on this during the past year as a regular band. It will contain less ballads and, yes, you can say that it will sound Heavier.

 Any thoughts to make a DVD?

I think it's a little bit early for that. I think after a few more albums we will be ready for that.

My last question; how do you feel that you have influenced so many female singers?

I am really proud about it. THE GATHERING and WITHIN TEMPTATION were the first bands that mixed keyboards, female vocals with Heavy Metal with a romantic touch on top. So, it is an honor that there a lot of bands and singers who are making music in a similar way. I treasure that!

Ok, Anneke thank you for you time and I will see you tomorrow.


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