Vassil Varbanov of Bulgaria's Tangra Mega Rock recently conducted an interview with NIGHTWISH singer Anette Olzon. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow:
Tangra Mega Rock: Well, it's good to have you live with us today, so let's start. Even before you joined NIGHTWISH, it was an extremely successful band with a charismatic female singer. Do you feel any pressure?
Anette Olzon: I try not to when it comes to the fact that I'm replacing Tarja, otherwise I'd be very nervous, because she's a good singer. I feel pressure on myself, because I'm a perfectionist and I wanna do my best for the fans and not let them down.
Tangra Mega Rock: Were you a NIGHTWISH fan before joining them?
Anette Olzon: No. I hadn't listened to NIGHTWISH that much. I had heard their name many times, because I fancy the metal industry, but the first time I actually listened to them was just a couple of months before everything with Tarja happened. I think this is a good thing, because now I can work with the band with clear eyes. I think the pressure upon me would have been bigger if I knew their whole history.
Tangra Mega Rock: Can we say that today you've already become friends with the guys?
Anette Olzon: I'd like to say that I am, and I hope the guys feel the same. Of course, it takes some more time to become really good friends.
Tangra Mega Rock: Obviously, you cannot escape from the comparisons between you and Tarja. Where are your strongest points, according to you?
Anette Olzon: I have a really high-pitched rock voice. I can sing very high with my natural voice, which is very powerful. I can also sing very emotionally, following the feelings of Tuomas' lyrics. I really try to give the listeners everything they want.
Tangra Mega Rock: I'm sure that through the years you've been listening to a lot of vocal performers. Who are your idols, if any?
Anette Olzon: I don't have any idols at the moment, but I used to have when I was younger. I listened a lot to Celine Dion — I think she's the ultimate female singer. And if I have to name a female singer from the contemporary metal scene, I'd say Simone Simons of EPICA and Sharon den Adel of WITHIN TEMPTATION.
Tangra Mega Rock: Let's focus on NIGHTWISH now. So far we've heard just two songs recorded with you — "Eva" and "Amaranth". Both are quite different from each other, so what should we expect from the full-length album, "Dark Passion Play"? Does it sound closer to the first or to the second single?
Anette Olzon: "Eva" is very, very far away from what the album is like. I think it's the softest song ever done by NIGHTWISH. As for "Dark Passion Play", I think this is the heaviest album NIGHTWISH have ever done. Of course, there are songs like "Amaranth" that are a bit more easy listening and radio-friendly. As a whole, it's a big mixture, yet a heavy album.
Tangra Mega Rock: What's the atmosphere within NIGHTWISH now?
Anette Olzon: Well, it's hard for me to tell how the other guys feel, but when we meet and rehearse I feel there's some confidence and that they trust me. I think after all that happened, now they can finally leave everything behind and concentrate on music again.
The entire interview is available in text and audio format at this location.