Interview: Prika Amaral (Vocals/Guitars) (Written/Audio)

It’s a night of extremely heavy music in London as death-thrashers Nervosa are in town on a short stint around England. Tonight is the first night of a five-date tour, which should have culminated with an appearance at Manorfest but that festival has been cancelled. A disappointing outcome for everyone, including Nervosa, but that hasn’t stopped them from bringing their ‘A’ game to The Underworld in Camden.

Nervosa are setting the metal world ablaze with their brand new song, ‘Endless Ambition’. It marks a new chapter and milestone in the band’s history, showcasing Nervosa with a revitalised line-up. Guitarist and founding member Prika Amaral is now the voice of Nervosa and ahead of their Underworld show (22/05/23), we spoke to her about the tour, the revitalised Nervosa, the costs and difficulties in touring, and so much more.

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What follows is a transcript of the interview but you can listen to the full thing via Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and YouTube below.

Hello Nervosa! Thank you so much for taking the time to do this. How are you feeling today?

I’m feeling great and really happy to come back here in London and meeting here in Underworld that we’ve been to many times. It’s nice to be here. Back here.

Kind of feels just like returning home, right?

Exactly.

It is the first day of your UK run. We are in London. There’s a lot of excitement to have you back here. Do you enjoy playing in London and the UK overall, in general? Do you find the UK crowds gravitate to you?

Yes, of course. It’s an important part of the world. I think of all the rock and everything here. Our influences came from here, so it’s amazing. The people here are super lovely and warm and we also have a lot of Brazilians and people from our countries here. It’s a multicultural place and we like to be here.

You do a tour here, you can hit up five, six, seven cities, all within the space of a week.

Exactly. This is a nice experience. A very nice experience.

Have you been able to sort something for the 27th specifically? Because, of course, that was originally Manorfest.

No, we don’t have anything that date. It’s very sad. We’re super excited. It was a really great line-up. It was supposed to be our first festival here in the UK after many years. So, it’s very sad.

What’s your thoughts on the collapse of these sort of smaller festivals? The venue closures because of costs and what effect does it have on a band like yourselves?

This was the first time that it’s affecting us. I mean, the cancellation of Manorfest really hit us very hard because it was a big reason for this tour. Coming here, we said, okay, we were playing the festival, let’s do more shows. And then we booked these shows because of the festival, and the festival cancelled. It’s a big amount of money we don’t have now.

So yeah, things are very hard but we are here to enjoy. We cannot cancel. We want to play, we want to have this experience now with the new line-up, we have to come here to show the people the new girls and the new sound. It’s not the only festival to be cancelled. It is happening in our world and I think everything about COVID and the war make the prices crazy. From one side, the logistic stuff, the companies are adjusting the prices and the band cannot adjust the prices because the prices of the tickets. It’s a mess, but I think next year everything will start to be more okay, this is the prices for now and everybody will be more prepared.

It’s a depressing subject, but it is a reality. Talk to me about the cost and the effort it takes to do something like this and why you think it’s worth it.

Some flights that we are buying for the summer fests, for example, we have no idea how much it will coat, so we are not prepared if it’s too high. The problem is everything is unbalanced now and we have no idea what’s going on. We have a fucking war, so we don’t know what will come next. Other countries are investing a lot of money, but who’s going to pay this in the end?

You were determined to go ahead with these dates?

Yes, of course, because we cannot cancel. The fans are waiting for this and we are a new line-up so we have to play. It’s like a combination of everything and COVID was really bad for everybody.

Well, of course, you said it yourself several times you’re back, familiar but fresh, a thumping headbanger of a new song as well called ‘Endless Ambition’ which has set the metal world alike. Do you feel encouraged by the reaction that song has got?

Yes, I’m super happy. The comments and everybody that sent me messages, they were super happy and impressed of my vocal parts. I was not expecting so many good things because, for me, it’s a totally new world. I had an idea because I was always backing vocals but I never study vocals. When I knew that the previous singer was leaving the band, I started to study and I has a few months, but everybody has said positive things.

The more you sing in a live environment, are you finding it more and more comfortable? Particularly with a crowd reaction?

Yes. For me it’s something really crazy because I really feel that I was doing this for the entire life. It was very natural for me, the hardest part was memorising the lyrics. Okay, my memory is not good, but yeah, it’s just to study and then we’ll be fine. But yeah, I feel really comfortable. Of course, I have many things to get better at, to gain more experience, of course. So, it surprised me in a positive way. And yes, I’m still focused on it.

The support has been immense. There’s a lot of good feeling, a lot of energy around Nervosa and the future. Do you feel that as well?

Yes, I feel that and I think one of the biggest reasons for that is because we have two guitars now. Everybody’s super excited for the new album. It is a big change as well, so the people are super curious for what’s coming next for Nervosa and I have to say that it will be like something of a revolution.

We tend to avoid using terms like ‘refresh’ or ‘restart’ or ‘rebirth’, but you almost talk and describe it as it is like a rebirth of Nervosa.

Yes, because every time that we have singer change, it is!

Yeah, it’s a big thing.

Yes, and now we have two guitarists, it’s another big thing too!

With COVID restrictions basically lifted pretty much throughout the entire world, everyone’s trying to get shows sorted. Have you had any difficulties in getting out and playing live since the world opened up again?

No. We are a very lucky band, actually. We are having the opposite problem. The people want us so much and we are not that kind of band. That is super expensive. So for us, our life is easier. Okay, but I think the bands that have huge expenses and the big tours, this kind of band are suffering more, but we are not at that level yet. So we are kind of a cheaper band.

The opportunity to say no to a few things.

Yes, because we need some breaks, of course, sometimes to just practise for the next album or to make stuff like that. I cannot complain.

Following COVID, we were one of the first or maybe the first band that played in Europe. With the tour last year, we opened many venues that were closed for two years.

Wow.

We were the first band to play after two years in many parts of Europe.

Incredible.

We can’t complain.

I mean, from such a huge amount of instability to careful stability. It was very nerve wracking as we came out of that. It’s affected every band in some way or another, from the smallest to the biggest. What effect overall did the lockdown periods have on Nervosa? For example, you released ‘Perpetual Chaos’ in 2021 and touring that album was extremely difficult.

I think the negative effect was still about the money. To cover all the costs was very tight. Yes, very tight. And in the end, the money that we have, it’s not that bad, but it’s not that good. Survival, with the prices rising every day, it’s a huge challenge for musicians, and the entire world, actually.

You survived. You are still here. Do you feel as though you are stronger because of all these challenges?

We never know. Future always answers. I can say this to you. Oh, yes. The future takes you and turns everything upside down. We never know, but I think the most important thing is everybody is doing the maximum, the best we can and I think everybody’s in the same mind. Everybody’s giving their blood, everybody’s enjoying it and everybody’s super grateful and happy. This is most important thing because to be surrounded by people that are unhappy, it’s not good for the inside.

This is all we want to hear. What do you want from the London crowd tonight? For you to leave satisfied?

Mosh pits. Everybody enjoying it a lot. I want to see everybody smiling, happy, screaming, crazy and then I’m fine.

What does the rest of 2023 roughly look like for Nervosa?

We have a lot of important festivals, and then we have our album coming out in September and we are working on that. We have a lot of things that will change in Nervosa so we are working hard to practise, to prepare for everything. Nervosa shows will be bigger. It’s a big move and we are planning some tours, promoting the album in the next half of the year. Not confirming where we’ll be though.




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  • Carl Fisher

    Owner/Administrator/Editor/Writer/Interviewer/YouTuber - you name it, I do it. I love gaming, horror movies, and all forms of heavy metal and rock. I'm also a Discworld super-fan and love talking all things Terry Pratchett. Do you wanna party? It's party time!