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Interview with Epica from Epica
by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos at 26 January 2008, 7:41 PM

EPICA came to Greece to repeat their successive appearance in last year's 'March Metal Day'. METAL TEMPLE had the chance to meet Mark, Yves, Coen and Simone during their stay just before their Athenian show. (I had to apologize since some technical reasons made this interview to take some additional time to get online).

Has Simone recovered from the recent health problems?

Mark Jansen Almost, she has. After the last European show Simone lost her voice and we had to cancel our performance in Mexico for the second time. The first cancellation happened because Simone had to go through an appendicitis surgery … I don’t know what is going on with Mexico; maybe there is something in the air (laughs). So, she had a problem with her immune system and the doctors said that she should rest for two weeks. Fortunately she did get better and we finally made to Greece.

So, she is not the new NIGHTWISH singer?

Oh no she is (laughs). Now it is safe to say that she is with NIGHTWISH

 Who did start these rumors?

Yves Huts: It was a Finnish newspaper that started this. The funny thing is that it is a tabloid and has nothing to do with music. They heard from someone that Simone is the new NIGHTWISH and they published it without cross checking it.

Ok. I think that the Divine Conspiracy is your best album; hopefully until now. How do you feel about this?

Mark Jansen: I totally agree with you. You know that every band thinks that the last album is their best but when the journalists say the same thing then it must be true. Of course there some fan who think that the first album is special and that is why we use tracks from that album in our concerts. We want to satisfy everyone who comes to our live shows.

Do you think that this success with put some additional pressure when you are making the next EPICA  album?

Mark Jansen No since we had already some pressure from the previous albums that did very well. In fact, I think that this pressure made us to produce this album that is doing even better than the previous…

Coen Jansen You always have to compete yourself and come up with something better than the previous. This is how you can evolve and move on.

The new album is a concept one; what is the storyline behind the lyrics?

 Mark Jansen It’s about God who created all the religions on earth to test us. But I think that Yves should explain the story because in he has done a very good job in previous interviews so…(laughs).

Yves HutsOk… the story is divided in three parts; the first is about the negative side of human psychic and the bad aspects of the human mind. The second part is about religion and how some people use it to control the masses and actually abuse them. The third part is about nature; people should understand that we have already great harm to her and this is our legacy to the next generation who will eventually pay the price.

Ok, you’ve done a very good job indeed… You have added some more aggression in your music; did this happen on purpose or it just happened in the studio?

Mark JansenThere were some negative things that happened in the band during the last year and a half when Transmission Records went broke and our drummer left. So, there were some reasons for us to put some anger in the music. Actually our new drummer Aien likes playing fast and aggressive in contrast to the old one so he helped us get this anger in the new album.

 How did you decide to do a FEAR FACTORY cover song?

Mark Jansen There are two reasons for that: the first is kind of funny; in the beginning of the band some were calling us Replica because they thought it was funny. We didn’t have any problem and we thought that we could be sarcastic with ourselves by doing a cover of Replica. The second reason is that FEAR FACTOR is a great band and Demanufacture, I think, is a historical album and Replica is one of the best songs in it.

EPICA is a band that mixes a lot of music genres staring with Symphonic orchestrations and reaching the almost classic Death Metal sound; Is there any of these sounds a personal favorite?

Coen Jansen The one that we are creating… The good thing with EPICA is that all the band’s members have brought in their own favorite style and music. One thing that we all have in common is that we love movie soundtracks.

 Who is into Death Metal? I think it’s you Mark…

Mark Jansen Yeah! When I was young I listened a lot to Death Metal. I started with GOREFEST from The Netherlands; you know that a GOREFEST gig was my first Metal one. I remember watching those guys performing with all that energy and that was when I thought this is want I want to do for myself

 What is your composition process?

Mark JansenWe are working separately and then send each other our ideas and eventually create the entire album. In fact the music is ready before we enter the studio.

Ok you have to be honest with this question; How is it like to be on tour with a woman?

Coen Jansen (laughs)…I think we are more like women and she is more like a man…(laughs) I think just one woman is ok!

 What are your memories from the first EPICA appearance in Greece?

Yves Huts The March Metal Day’; it was really great because we did not expect that reaction from the fans. Actually we didn’t know that we had so many fans here in Greece. This is why we are here…

There is a really heavy tour program ahead; Do you think that it could be difficult for you?

Yves Huts Actually if you are not used traveling and sleeping in the bus with so many people it can be really difficult.

Mark JansenThe good thing is that the beers are free! Yes there is not much privacy but this is why we form a Metal band to go out and play live! It’s great to travel in different places and meet so many people; and the beers are free.

? could not resist of leaving the hotel without talking to beautiful Simone; so below you can find some answers of hers.

 First of all how are you?

Almost ok. This health situation was too much for me; my immune system was not working properly and the doctors could not find the reason. Adding to that was the fact that I did not have enough time to relax and recover.

 I have to congratulate you about your latest guest appearance with AYREON. How did contact Arjen?

Thank you. He sent me an e mail proposing me to do some guest vocals and since I knew his past works I accepted.

 You have done an excellent work on the Web Of Lies. So, do you think that these days this is the way to get into a relation via the internet?

Internet is great since you get the chance to communicate with so many people from all over the world but clearly there is a downside to it with all that young children who sometimes are in danger; referring to this song Simone is attracted to Px who is a stranger to her but eventually when he is not responding she immediately falls for OL.


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