Nervosa Regroup As Global Thrash Act, Release ‘Perpetual Chaos’
Brazilian guitarist, songwriter and co-founder Prika Amaral is joined by Italian-origin bassist Mia Wallace, Spanish vocalist Diva Satanica and Greek drummer Eleni Nota
Thrash metal band Nervosa’s founder Prika Amaral wasn’t one to be deterred by the pandemic even though there was a lot of strife caused in her own world and outside. Staring down the exit of three members in the incendiary Brazilian quartet who blazed a path all around the globe, Amaral says she received bolstering messages from fans who asked her to power on, even as the world went into lockdown.
Considering the amount of speed conjured on the fretboard by Amaral, it’s no surprise to hear her say over a video call from Brazil that she likes to do everything really fast. “I’m almost like a volcano,” the guitarist says with a laugh. She adds, “I don’t need too much time to do things, especially because we’re living in the internet age. So right after the girls left the band, I started looking for more girls.”
The first emails she’d sent out to potential members were delivered to bassist Mia Wallace (previously part of black metal act Abbath), vocalist Diva Satanica aka Rocío Vázquez and drummer Eleni Nota. “They replied very quickly and happily. We did a video call and spoke a little bit. We did more and more video calls and I sent a song to see how interested they are in this music,” Amaral says. Of course, it’s one thing to pick musicians who can belt out the crushing death-thrash rhythms to a tee, but the guitarist was looking for more. “I’m sure all the girls in the world are able to play this. I was not worried about ability but I was more looking at personality and what they want,” she says.
In the span of a year, Nervosa has powered up as a global femme collective of young as well as experienced musicians. You can hear them gnashing their way through the new album Perpetual Chaos (released on January 22nd via Napalm Records) with searing conviction. In this interview with Rolling Stone India, Amaral talks about the lineup change, heading to a studio in Malaga in the midst of the pandemic and what’s next. Excerpts:
Before you all finally came together to record, what was one of the surprising things you’d found out your new bandmates?
Look, on our video calls, we did some jokes but they were small jokes. I was anticipating that the girls were maybe a bit on the serious side but they are like me! They are very funny girls and we’re kinda like idiots, but in a good way (laughs).
Nervosa has now seemingly become a collective of femme musicians from around the world now. How do you see that?
It’s been a huge change for Nervosa, because before we were all Brazilians and now we’re from different countries. Brazil is like this, though. We’re a mix of many cultures of the world. We have a lot of descendants from Spain, Italy… like I have descendants from Spain and Italy. I think we’ll still continue to be from Brazil but for this pandemic situation, we could promote the band more, since everyone’s on the internet more than ever now. So I think this contributed to bringing in more energy and new growth. The band is now very interesting to see and listen to, with how it all works together. It was very good for Nervosa and I’m so happy with all the feedback we’ve got, it’s more than I expected.
The studio documentary of you all in Malaga shows a lot of the processes and personalities in the band. What was it like meeting up and making an album in the midst of a pandemic?
We did this at a perfect time. It was when Europe opened its borders and the deaths were very low – less than 10 deaths per day – and that’s why we have the consequences now, though! Everyone in the summer got out. But for us, it was a dream come true. After many months of being in a hard situation, it meant that we had this heaven and got out of hell!
We were all together and it was 100 percent good vibes. We enjoyed every single moment, everything. That’s why this has created more excitement and anxiousness for all of us in the band to stay together again and play.
What are your favorite songs on Perpetual Chaos?
It was a very crazy situation because I composed the entire album in two months. I didn’t have too much time to enjoy the songs. I was finishing one song and then jumping on to the next one. In the middle of finishing another song, I would find a riff and follow that to make a new song. It was messed like that but when we were recording in Malaga, some songs brought out a particular vibe.
‘Venomous,’ for example, the opening song, it was very fast and thrash and everyone was dancing. ‘Guided By Evil’ too, because it was just so evil! Even ‘Time To Fight’, it was so charged up with the chorus. ‘Blood Eagle’ is a very death metal song.
Have you ever had any offers from India? Mia played here with Abbath in 2019.
Yeah, for Mia, her first show with Abbath was actually in India and she said it was amazing. For Nervosa, we did get some emails from India and we’re trying to go there. Maybe in our next Asian tour. We know headbangers in India are really good. We’ve played in many countries around the world, but we’re still missing out territories like India, Africa and Australia/New Zealand. Some countries on the other side of the planet! We really want to do that, we are already talking about it – we’re just waiting for when we can go, because of this situation, but we’re completely ready.
Stream ‘Perpetual Chaos’ below and on more platforms here.