STREAM OF PASSION: Interview with Marcela Bovio

Stream of Passion

Stream of Passion, fronted by charismatic Marcela Bovio, released their fourth studio album in April 2014. Symbolically named A War of Our Own, the record in some way represents a new beginning for the band. For the purpose of funding its release, the band decided to animate their fanbase through an Indiegogo crowd-funding campaign.

About this and some other topics, Prog Sphere talked to Marcela Bovio.

The new Stream of Passion album has been out for a month now. Are you satisfied with the reception it receives?

Yes, we’re extremely happy. We’re very satisfied with how the album turned out, and very pleased both fans and critics are enjoying it!

What evolution do you feel A War of Our Own represents for the band compared to everything you did before?

We’re including more progressive influences every time, something we’ve been wanting to do for the past couple of albums already. It’s becoming a very important characteristic of our music, as well as the subtle Latin elements we try to incorporate here and there.

Describe how the album came together into a cohesive whole.

It was quite a natural process, really. To write the songs of this album we followed the same method we did for the previous one: I start with an idea, then we work it out further with our producer Joost van den Broek, and then we integrate the rest of the band and details afterwards. It felt great to work like this for Darker Days, so we knew it would go very well. We had a very clear vision on what we wanted to achieve, and with Joost‘s help we were able to keep in line with that idea.

Stream of Passion - A War of Our OwnWere there any changes in your writing approach comparing with previous three albums?

Not much. This time I was on a better emotional place when writing; compared to Darker Days I was able to explore a lot more different things and themes this time.

Have you managed to make any new discoveries in terms of songwriting on A War of Our Own?

I think before this album I was a bit afraid of experimenting much with our music, but I’m realising that as long as the emotions behind a song are honest and pure our audience will still be able to connect with them on a very natural fashion.

How does the album title complement the material showcased on it?

Most of the songs deal with struggles: our struggle as a band, to create this album independently; the struggle of friends and family against diseases like cancer or depression; the struggle of Mexico as a country against the consequences of the drug wars. So it’s all different kinds of battles, that’s why we thought this title encapsulated the topics on the album the best.

What’s going on in a video for the title track from the new album? You seem to be in a pretty tough situation, there are lots of gunpoints. [laughs]

Yes! Well the song itself is inspired in the situation in Mexico, the insecurity and social problems caused by the drug wars. So in this video we portrayed a situation that exemplifies this, and also touches the subject of corruption in the Mexican police.

What were the biggest challenges you faced when writing A War of Our Own?

I have to say we didn’t have all that many difficulties! It all went really smoothly; if anything we had this period when we were less productive, while we were setting up our crowdfunding campaign.

Does your approach to singing on the new album differ from your previous releases?

I’ve been learning a lot the past couple of years, so I have the impression I’m able to express a lot more with my voice. The loud parts are louder, and the emotional parts even more emotional. I’m very happy with the results!

You have already performed new songs in front of the audiences. Did it work out to your satisfaction?

Yes, definitely. The crowds seem to connect with these songs almost straight away, which is quite remarkable being that the material is a bit more complex than what we used to do.

What were the circumstances surrounding the band’s split with Napalm Records?

To be honest for a while already we had the feeling that they didn’t really understand where we wanted to go with our music; they were quite distant the whole time, and didn’t seem very excited about the demos we made for this new album. So that triggered us into looking for other options.

As you mentioned, the release of A War of Our Own was crowd-funded through an Indiegogo campaign. What, in your opinion, is crucial for a crowd-funding campaign to be successful?

To really know your audience, and make sure you have a fan base that cares about you. From the very beginning we’ve always tried to stay close to our fans; after a show we’ll always go into the audience and talk to them, we are very active on social media and try to respond to all messages we have. I really think this has been the key to our success: we have a bond with our fans, and because of this connection they were really willing to help.

You will performing live in the coming period. Is there something special that you are preparing for any of the dates?

We’ll be performing a lot of songs from the new album, really looking forward to that! And we’ll be unleashing all our energy on stage every time, like we love to do!

Marcela Bovio
It’s obvious that you grab inspiration from many distinctive genres. How do you go about channeling this inspiration into writing?

I don’t know, I guess it just happens! The more music I listen to the more nice references I have when creating my own songs.

What non-musical entities and ideas have an impact on your work?

I go a lot by emotion, so my state of mind and that of the people close to me are a big influence in the music I make.

What is your view on today’s progressive metal scene? Are there any modern female-fronted progressive bands that you listen to?

I’m very excited about what’s been happening in the prog metal scene lately. I’m absolutely in love with the latest albums of TesseracT and Leprous; not female fronted, but incredible progressive music!

With Prog Sphere we tend to release a downloadable Progstravaganza compilation series, highlighting the artists coming from progressive related genres from all around the world. Do you think such a thing is good enough to showcase the potential of many unheard bands on the already overcrowded scene?

It’s certainly a big impulse! Progressive rock and metal are usually not very mainstream genres but the fans are incredibly loyal; this sort of initiative is great because it puts new and exciting bands in the spotlight, and makes their music available to an audience that has a bigger chance of appreciating what they’re doing.

What does the future hold?

Hopefully a lot more good shows, and making more music!

Nikola Savić is a prog enthusiast, blogger and author, in addition to being the founder of Prog Sphere, Progify, ProgLyrics and the ongoing Progstravaganza compilation series.

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