In a new interview with Australia's Heavy, NIGHTWISH frontwoman Floor Jansen was asked if the band contemplated pushing back the release date of its new album, "Human. :II: Nature.", due to the coronavirus crisis which is sweeping the globe. She responded (hear audio below): "We already did all the promotion you can do physically — all the work was done. When we took the decision [to keep the original release date], the lockdowns weren't really happening yet; we didn't know it was gonna get this far. But I'm still happy with our decision, though, because I think we bring pleasure to a lot of people that now have a lot of time to actually listen to the album. It's sad we can't perform it live, but at least people can enjoy it now. And I'm really glad for that."
Jansen went on to say that the COVID-1 pandemic, at its core, is an overpopulation problem, with humans coming into increasing contact with wild-animal pathogens against which we have no biological defenses.
"If you think of it, cruel and horrible as it is, we are living in an overpopulated biotope," she explained. "In every area, if there are too many kangaroos in Australia, they eat too much crops, they don't leave enough food for other species, and it results in all kinds of problems. And with rabbits, for instance, when there are too many rabbits in one area, they usually get killed by some kind of disease that naturally takes [them] out. And it's a horrible thing to think of, but that's what's happening. And so we might have forgotten that we're so much part of the natural world that this can take us [out] too. And then we're so close to each other, it spreads like — it spreads like a disease. The only thing that surprises me, really, is the ill preparation of governments worldwide for an outbreak of a virus or a disease that all of a sudden caused this."
Floor also talked about how the lyrical themes covered on "Human. :II: Nature.", relate to the current crisis. She said: "'Human. :II: Nature.', the album, taps into the love for life and into the love for nature and the positive things of us humans. Because now you can say, 'Yeah, we destroyed the planet,' and 'We don't know how to take care of ourselves.' You have all this doom thinking everywhere. That's not really productive either. We've been doing great things, but we can also say that there are probably better ways to take care of the planet that we're living in. And I can hope that this whole situation inspires people to better their ways, basically."
"Human. :II: Nature." was released on April 10 via Nuclear Blast. The long-awaited follow-up to 2015's "Endless Forms Most Beautiful" is a double album containing nine tracks on the main CD and one long track, divided into eight chapters, on CD 2.
"Human. :II: Nature." was recorded from August to October 2019 at Röskö campsite, Petrax Studios and Troykington castle, as well as Finnvox Studios, by Tero Kinnunen, Mikko Karmila and Troy Donockley. The mixing was done by Mikko Karmila at Finnvox, with NIGHTWISH keyboardist and main songwriter Tuomas Holopainen and Tero Kinnunen. Mastering was done by Mika Jussila at Finnvox.
NIGHTWISH's new album marks the band's second full-length effort with Jansen, who has been touring with the group since 2012.