Artisan News Service recently conducted an interview with NIGHTWISH bassist/vocalist Marco Hietala about the group's split with singer Tarja Turunen and the addition of new vocalist Anette Olzon. Watch the four-minute report below.
On Turunen's departure, Marco said, "We really couldn't get along anymore with all the hassle that was going on with two managements fighting over things like where to get most of the money, who wants to play a bigger venue, who wants to play for smaller (venue), a lot of differences that really turned out to be a major obstacle to things. Of course with Tarja, she had her husband as a personal manager so then the unit there was really tight. They were always just looking out for each other's opinions, and then there were four of us guys and our management; the management that had booked the tours and had been with the band for some time and were our friends. For instance on the last album we tried to America, to the U.S. for a couple of tours and they basically torpedoed the whole thing and the management that we had ended up suffering for it and getting the blame. With those couple of U.S. tours, they were probably just the last straw."
Regarding what the addition of Anette Olzon has brought to the band, Marco stated, "Some fresh blood, of course. She's got a real open personality. She really talks about what she wants, and what she doesn't like to do, and all these kinds of things which is basically a really nice change. Because we can talk about things and end up having a compromise sometimes instead of having somebody having set his or her way. In the old days we just had people telling us in emails, 'This isn't going to work,' and all that and not really talking about these things. So the basic band chemistry is a lot more fresh, a lot better. From that point of view, I think it must transfer to the stage when you're doing your thing together. It has to come across to the people that, 'OK, these people are happy together.'"
On the subject of Anette's comfort level singing the old songs, formerly handled by Turunen, Marco said, "Yeah, well, she's been more comfortable with the stuff that she did on the album, but of course we've got to do some back catalogue as well. We've been just figuring out what songs to play and what songs to drop. We've got some old favorites in there as well. We tried them out, actually, in the studio, so we would have a bottom track, and then she would do some things over it, and then listen to it, and then go, 'Maybe that would work better,' and then go on to the rehearsals. I had to change quite a lot of vocal harmonies that I have done before, because now she's doing the old stuff in her way. So there's definitely different timing, some different melody lines, that kind of stuff, and I had to adapt to that."