Interview med Philippe Giordana fra Fairyland

Fairyland 2020

Netop som Fairyland udgiver deres fjerde studiealbum, fangede vi medstifter og keyboardspiller Philippe Giordana for at få en opdatering på historien om Osyrhia, nye indspilningsfaciliteter, og hvad fremtiden bringer for dem.

Først og fremmest tillykke med jeres nye album, Osyrhianta, forhistorien til trilogien om Osyrhia. Havde I skrevet hele historien, inden I begyndte at skrive Of Wars In Osyrhia (2003), eller kom det stille og roligt med tiden? 

Hej, og tak! Det fulde koncept var færdigskrevet et par måneder, efter Of Wars In Osyrhia var udgivet, da jeg ønskede at have en solid basis for flere album. I begyndelsen endte det med Of Wars (Of Wars In Osyrhia, red.), men så besluttede jeg mig for at udvikle det noget mere. Oprindelseshistorien fortalt i Osyrhianta var der fra starten, med bare nogle enkelte tilføjelser/rettelser: ’The Giant Wars’ og ’Song Of Epheos’. Det er emner, jeg måske vil udforske i fremtidige udgivelser.

Osyrhianta fortæller, hvordan Osyrhia blev vakt til live, med alle historierne om de forskellige riger, det ’ledende lys’ – Eleandra – og det, at (næsten) alle folk blev samlet, og sidst men ikke mindst tilsynekomsten af Cenos og Barbarerne. Hvor har I fået al jeres inspiration fra til dette og de andre album?

Der var en masse indlysende inspiration fra kultklassikere som Tolkiens Silmarillion, men også folkelegender, mytologi og religioner fra rundtomkring i hele verden. I det store hele var mit ønske at have noget så episk som den føromtalte Silmarillion. Jeg er nødt til at takke Blind Guardian og deres Nightfall In Middle-Earth for det. Jeg lytter stadig til det omkring to gange om ugen, mindst.

Lad os kaste et blik på indspilningsprocessen og produktionen af albummet. Du siger, at I denne gang havde adgang til langt bedre indspilningsfaciliteter samt udstyr. Hvordan har det påvirket hele processen?

Jamen, studiet har draget fordel af nyt udstyr samt VST-instrumenter (Virtual Studio Technology er en måde at skabe forskellige instrumenter digitalt. Dermed kan man bruge et MIDI-keyboard til at indspille en akustisk guitar.)  der overgår alle andre, vi tidligere har brugt. Jeg indspiller mine keyboards live og i MIDI (MIDI er en digital standard til at indspille instrumenteringen i stedet for analog. Dette kan man så bruge til at styre VST-instrumenter med.), så vi kan prøve alle de forskellige samples, vi vil bruge på albummet. Processen kan være en smule langtrukken, men det er i dén grad det værd, og studiet er placeret i de smukke franske Alper med en stor have og et boblebad. Det hjælper. 

I har en ny sanger med på dette album, Francesco Cavalieri fra det italienske dwarf metal-orkester Wind Rose. Hvordan var det at arbejde med ham  sammenlignet med jeres tidligere sangerinde, Elisa (som gæsteoptræder på skæringen ”Eleandra”)?

Hvad angår den menneskelige relation, er der ikke forskel. Begge er skønne og professionelle mennesker, som vi virkelig nyder at arbejde med. Til dette album havde Francesco allerede indspillet demoversioner med os tilbage i 2015, så han kendte materialet særdeles godt og gennemførte sine indspilninger meget hurtigt. Elisa var på det tidspunkt i samme studie for at indspille Hamkas (Willdrics andet orkester) nye album, og vi greb muligheden for at have hende med som gæst på Osyrhianta. Vi var nødt til at skrive teksten og vokalmelodien her og nu, men hun gjorde et fantastisk stykke arbejde.

Med nye indspilningsfaciliteter og nye medlemmer brugte I denne gang også en rigtig violinist (Camille “Cydorrh” Dominique fra orkesteret Adaryn). Det frembringer et helt nyt lag til jeres lyd og gør det hele en smule mere autentisk. Har I nogensinde overvejet at lave et album med et klassisk orkester bag jer?

Camille arbejdede virkelig godt. Hun kom i studiet uden forudgående kendskab til noderne til albummet. Vi udskrev dem til hende, og hun spillede dem bare perfekt. Det tog to dage at indspille alle hendes dele, og det er ret hurtigt. Et fuldt klassisk orkester er en ret attraktiv tanke, men vi har ikke rigtigt finanserne til at kunne have råd til det endnu. Måske en dag…

Hvad er jeres planer og tanker for de næste – lad os sige – fem år? Har I nogen spillesteder/festivaler, hvor I gerne vil spille rundtomkring i Europa?

Vi vil gerne turnere så meget som muligt (når pandemien ikke er her). Vi har allerede øjnene på nogle enkelte festivaler, måske med et par mindre spillesteder også for at få en komplet turné. Den ultimative drøm, som vi gerne ville fuldføre en dag, er en gigantisk Fairyland-koncert på omkring to timer med så mange som muligt af de gæster og musikere, vi har arbejdet med i tidens løb. Og måske dét orkester… 

Tusinde tak for, at I tog jer tid til dette interview. Held og lykke med det nye album, og så vil vi se frem til forhåbentlig at fange jer et eller andet sted rundtomkring i Europa snart. Har I noget, I gerne vil sige til jeres danske fans? 

Tak for det til jer også. Som altid håber vi, at vores fans vil nyde at lytte til det nye album lige så meget, som vi nød at lave det. Hvis de vil fordybe sig noget mere i konceptet Osyrhia, så kan man finde det på vores facebookside, og måske vil jeg lave en dedikeret hjemmeside til det. 
Skål! Og STAY METAL!!! lml.
 

As Fairyland are releasing their fourth studio-album, we caught up with founder and keyboard player of the band Philippe Giordana, for an update on the tale of Osyrhia, recording facilities and what the future holds.

First of all; congratulations on your new album Osyrhianta, the prequel to the trilogy about your fictional setting. Was the whole story completed before you started writing Of Wars in Osyrhia (2003) or did it come along as the years went by? 

Hi, and thanks! The full concept was written a few months after Of Wars in Osyrhia was released, as I wanted to have a solid basis for further albums. It initially ended with Of Wars (Of Wars In Osyrhia, red.), but then I decided to develop it more. The origin story told in Osyrhianta was there from the beginning with only a couple of additions/editing: The Giants Wars and The Song Of Epheos. Those are subjects I might explore in future releases. 

Osyrhianta tells the story about how Osyrhia came to life, with all the stories of the realms, the guiding light “Eleandra” and the gathering of (almost) all the peoples, and last but not least, the appearance of Cenos and the barbarians. Where did you get all your inspiration from for this, and the other albums?

There was a lot of obvious inspiration from cult classics such as Tolkien's Silmarillion, but also folk legends, mythology, and religions from around the world. In the grand scheme of things, I really wanted to have something as epic as the aforementioned Silmarillion. I have to thank Blind Guardian and their awesome Nightfall in Middle Earth for that. I still listen to it about twice a week, at least. 

Let’s have a look at the recording process and the production of the album. 
You said that this time, you had access to much better recording facilities and equipment. How did this affect the whole process?

Well, the studio has benefited from new equipment, as well as VST instruments (Virtual Studio Technology is a way to generate different instruments digitally. In that way you can use a MIDI keyboard to record an acoustic guitar). that surpass all previous ones we've ever used. I record my keyboards live and in MIDI (MIDI is a digital standard to record the instrumentation instead of analog. The MIDI tracks can then be used to control the VST instruments.), so we can try whatever samples we want on the tracks. The process can be a bit long’ish, but it's definitely worth it. And the studio is located in the beautiful French Alpes, with a big garden and a jacuzzi. It helps. 

You have a new singer on this album, Francesco Cavalieri from the Italian “dwarf metal” band Wind Rose. What was it like working with him, compared to your former vocalist Elisa (who makes a guest appearance on the track “Eleandra”)? 

As far as human relations go, it's the same. Both are lovely and professional people that we really enjoy working with. For this album, Francesco had already recorded the demo versions with us back in 2015, so he knew his material very well and completed his session very fast. Elisa, at the time, was at the studio to record Hamka's (Willdric's other band) new album, and we took the opportunity to have her as a guest on Osyrhianta. We had to write the lyrics and vocal lines on the spot, but she did a great job. 

With new recording facilities, and new members, you also brought in a real violinist (Camille “Cydorrh” Dominique from the band Adaryn). It brings a whole new level to your sound and makes it a bit more authentic. Have you ever considered doing an album with a classical orchestra backing you up? 

Camille worked amazingly. She came to the studio without prior knowledge of the music sheets for the album. We printed them out, and she just played them perfectly. It took two days to record all her parts, and that's very short. A full classical orchestra is an attractive notion, but we don't really have the treasury to afford that yet. One day, maybe...

What are your plans and thoughts for the next, let’s say 5 years? 
Do you have any venues/festivals you really want to perform at throughout Europe?

We'd like to tour as much as possible (pandemic notwithstanding). We already have our eyes on a few festivals, maybe agreements with smaller venues for a complete tour. The ultimate dream we'd love to make real one day is a giant Fairyland concert of about two hours, with as many of the guests past and present as are available. And maybe that orchestra...

Thank you so much for your time.  The best of luck with the new album, and we will look forward to hopefully catching you live somewhere in Europe soon. Do you have anything you want to say to your Danish fans? 

Thank you as well. As usual, we hope the fans will enjoy listening to this new album as much as we enjoyed making it. If they want to dwell further into the concept Osyrhia, it can be found on our Facebook page, or maybe I'll put it on a dedicated website. Cheers, and STAY METAL!!! lml
 

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