The official video for "Tears In Rain", the new single from former NIGHTWISH singer Tarja Turunen, can be seen below. The song is taken from her upcoming studio album, "In The Raw", which will be released on August 30 via earMUSIC.
The clip finds the golden-voiced singer engaging in some roller derby. While training to film, Tarja sustained a coccyx injury but she remained undeterred.
In the video, Tarja plays the roller Black Leijona of the all-female team Killer Crows. The Killer Crows are on the edge of losing the ultimate and decisive game of the season. However, by facing and overcoming her insecurities, Black Lejona is restored to her status as the team leader.
"For my third single, 'Tears in Rain', I was looking for a strong video," explains Tarja. "I didn't want to get into a cliché of tears and rain or a breakup story. The song is about overcoming difficulties that could apply to any aspect of life. The instruction I gave to director Florian Kaltenbach ('Victim Of Ritual', '500 Letters') was to avoid the obvious. I wanted an action video where I could take part. He proposed the roller derby idea and I loved it."
Naturally, the video presented a huge challenge to Tarja, as it was the first time she tried the sport. Unfortunately, her first foray into roller derby was not without injury. During training, she dislocated her coccyx.
"I haven't been on skates too much and I have been ice skating in my youth," Tarja says. "But I realized immediately that skating with rollers is a totally different thing. I had to learn, and I only had three days before the video shooting that took place in London!! I knew I was in trouble. It's already common for me to get hurt in my videos, and this was not an exception. I had an accident in a skatepark near my home and dislocated my coccyx — I broke my ass! Despite the terrible pain, I did two shows and the video shoot with a broken butt.
She finishes: "So, as in the story of the video, I myself overcame difficulties. If you see me in pain in some parts of the video, that is not acting. The roller girls and the video team took good care of me and I enjoyed the experience, despite my condition. I had a lot of fun! When I recover, I wish to take my daughter to skate with me. We both got hooked on roller skating!"
The very emotional, highly personal lyrics of "Tears In Rain" stand in stark contrast to the musical rendition. Heavy guitars, an impulsive melody, and Tarja's crystal clear voice make for one of the most powerful, catchiest songs of "In The Raw" — if not the core song.
The song is also inspired by the famous monologue at the end of the sci-fi classic "Blade Runner".
"Johnny Andrews can make me fly with his ideas for new songs," Tarja explains. "It has always been a pure pleasure to write with him. After years, he also understands my voice and music taste better, so the writing process is easier in every way. Even though this time we didn't sit in the same room while the song was shaped, still, I have to say this one makes me very happy and proud. When we had finished writing the song, I already felt it as one of the strongest songs from the album. It just has the energy that drives me onward."
She furthers: "We used a very famous quote from Ridley Scott's film 'Blade Runner' — a classic that sets the tone for the story in the song 'All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain.'"
As the saying goes, not all that glitters is gold. But then again, not all that is gold necessarily glitters. It was this idea that struck Tarja as she began work on "In The Raw".
Three years on from her last album, 2016's "The Shadow Self", "In The Raw" finds Tarja and her beautiful voice sounding as stunning as ever. Working with many of the same musicians and production team as before, the intention was to bring out the idea of rawness to match the feelings Tarja was having from the very beginning of the process.
"In The Raw" sees Tarja tapping into raw emotion and going to personal places in her lyrics. Opening herself up more than ever before, she says she was left feeling naked by her honesty, but also pleased at where she had gone with her words.
"Gold, we think, is something polished and perfect, sophisticated, a luxury. But in its natural state, it's a raw element," explains the singer. That sentiment encompasses the music on her upcoming album: a combination of sophisticated and refined orchestration, choir, and her classically trained voice with a raw, dark heavy musical core. Simply put, "In The Raw" is a gold-plated work of wonder.
The concept of gold and its raw state extends to the album's artwork. It finds Tarja in St Michael's Cave, Gibraltar, framed in vivid color and golden sheen.
"In The Raw" track listing:
01. Dead Promises (with Björn "Speed" Strid)
02. Goodbye Stranger (with Cristina Scabbia)
03. Tears In Rain
05. You And I
06. The Golden Chamber: Awaken / Loputon Yö / Alchemy
07. Spirits Of The Sea
08. Silent Masquerade (with Tommy Karevik)
10. Shadow Play
Last year, Tarja told Bloodlines that her new album would be "darker" and "a bit heavier" than 2016's "The Shadow Self". But she added that she would never forget "the symphonic side of mine, as my first love of music was classical music, so I will never get away from that."