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January 24, 2019

Interview Doll’s Diary

Greetings from Sick and Destroy team. What are you up to these days?
Hi guys! We are a newly-born band from Rivne, Ukraine. We play hard drama rock.

Would you please introduce your band to our readers who are not aware of your band and music?
Yes, definitely! Doll’s Diary is a song-based band that plays mainly melody-driven hard & heavy stuff. We were all united under the idea of creating some innovative musical rethinking of 80s rock music, having set a concise aim of providing a solid blend of hard rock with dramatic arrangements and videogame motives. We make hard rock sound nostalgic and atmospheric by means of wide range of string and symphonic instruments.

Currently, the line-up looks this way
Pavlo Horechko – Vocals, Rhythm Guitars, Keyboards
Anton Honcharov – Rhythm Guitars, Solo Guitars
Mykhailo Kravchuk – Bass Guitars
Dmytro Karasiuk – Drums

Give us a little insight into the formation of the band. When and how did it happen?
We were all inspired people with rock music in our hearts. Since early childhood I was a huge fan of bands like Whitesnake, Dio, Scorpions, Skid Row etc. So, during my juvenile years of playing mostly semi-professional music and growing as a musician, I started to think if a formation of a classic rock band would be up to its place now. So, this way, the creation of the band, with no hesitation, was my intention to deviate the traditional image of hard rock by adding various atmospheric details to it, offering the innovative sound solution to the audience. Therefore, we all had a clear purpose of what we want to play and what we strive to achieve in the end.

At what age did you guys start playing instruments? Since when are you into metal music?
I remember myself being a pupil of the second grade when my father bought me a piano and I started attending music school. As I recall now, several years there resulted in writing some classic melodies and symphonies, mostly structured as traditional classic music. So, by early 2000s my father has already recorded me on two cassettes with the total of around 30 melodies. The works of classic composers had a huge impact on me that time. So, if you ask me, when I turned into a metal head, I will admit I was not into rock as a musician that much until my conscious age, although I did listen to hard rock giants all the time.

Doll’s Diary recently released album ‘Hard & Loud’ through Rockshots records. Tell us something about it. Walk us through all the tracks lyrics and meaning.
Yeah, it was a great experience! We had much fun during the whole recording process. Thus, the dark side of it marked by sleepless nights and efforts spent on delivering a good quality product brought some emotional devastation as well, considering we had been working on this record for almost three years. I would also like to express my gratitude to Italian record label and production company Rockshots as these guys are really great and supportive. In less than a month after the release date, we are in the top 100 best melodic rock albums of 2017. Not that bad as for the debut album, isn’t it? And the album is constantly getting really positive reviews in different countries.

As a sole author of both lyrics and music, I will try to reflect on what I tried to preserve here and there through the tracks.
1. Hard & Loud is the opening track, the so-called introduction to what awaits you later across the album. As you have probably noticed from the cover artwork, the open door and the neon canvas a bit upon it invite you to the bar where rock n roll spirit is on the stage. So, the initial track is just the start of the rock n roll journey.
2. Stranger is one of my favorite tunes that always reminds me of my student years where careless lifestyle and stairway to adulthood were both in one place. It is a personal reflection of rock n roll rebellion that rests on a rock n roll community of that time. The message is clear: live for the sake of rock n roll and love it with all your heart and take more people aboard that will share the same warmth, atmosphere and ideology. And no matter how soon you get old, there are a lot of people out there to support and guide you accordingly.
3. Can You Live Without Rock? was meant as the rock n roll anthem. The meaning is a bit implied, so, having the lyrics in front of you, you will still have to read between the lines. All in all, this is just a firm statement for people who think they can abandon rock n roll – if you have a connection to rock music either directly or indirectly, you will still be into it forever as it brings you emotions, feelings, fears and angers, forces you to action, helps you treat things logically and analytically and makes your life overall. So, it is physically impossible to refuse from rock n roll as it a metal disease.
4. I’m Gonna Be Cool is a track where we wanted to show a different side of rock. It is a heavy focus on rhythm and riffs that constitute a powerful depth that could be covered with high pitched vocals. So, it is an attempt to bring as much drive as possible.
5. Whenever I Dream of You is a romantic ballad that was written on a piano. It is a slow-down for the listener that forces to take a break and think of love and its importance in everyone’s life. The lyrics apparently reveal a sad story about loss in love. It restates the feelings of a man who loses his sweetheart and who is not ashamed to express his emotions freely. Thus, the song does not reflect my personal story, whereas it mostly brings another tale that is highly typical for all generations and all societies. Anyway, the sad feelings keep the same nature regardless of the country or generation you live in.
6. Paradise is a melodic tune, totally played in AOR manner. The song is about our rises and falls on the life road. The melodic solo completes the melodic motive and the song stands for itself.
7. Time is one of my favorite records as it combines the elements of both hard rock and blues and has the unpredictable melodic line, which makes it catchy and appealing. Although it obviously recalls the voice of the epoch, it still has some vintage sound, which is not typical for other tunes on the album.
8. Blondie was written early in 2015 and it is an attempt to bring drive to the audience by offering powerful bottom sound with heavy riffs and sweet solo guitars. The arrangement does not have any symphonic elements, so the pure combination of solo and rhythm guitars represents the hard rock in its best sense.
9. It’s Time to Say Goodbye is a different tune that was written long ago when I was a student. So, it clearly has a nostalgic tone and shows how youth would perceive their state of getting more experienced through the huge pile of life circumstances. A social aspect of depending on your community and yourself is heavily raised through the lyrics.
10. Stranger (acoustic version) has a lighter arrangement and is mostly meant for a symphonic orchestra, where I tried to put and preserve the dramatic line within the whole song.

Thank you, very informative! How has been the response so far by the listeners? Have you already started working on new songs?
To be honest, I am really proud of this record, cause we released the material that speaks volumes of itself. And that is not my personal victory. I had a pleasure to work with my friends who are professional musicians and I respect all of them for what they have done to the overall sound. It is also much about the sound engineers who did their job perfectly and as a result many listeners abroad were highly impressed by the quality of songwriting and sound. Yes, the writing process is always on, but I never force myself. At the moment, I have a pause till when the inspiration will result in something worthwhile, cause I am always hyper-demanding to songwriting and I do not want to produce albums full of trash. My view about it all is simple – every specific song must stand on its own and must have a clear and appealing melody line. You must get a desire to play a tune once again after you listen to it for the first time.

When and where did you play your first gig? Ever had an epic fail moment during a gig? How was the experience of going live for the first time?
We haven’t had any gigs so far for the album is only released and mainly, it was planned as a studio project. To get it to the stage we must work really hard if we want to give the same sound and the same intense arrangements as on the record.

What, according to you, is the secret behind band’s success?
The secret to success is that we try to offer something innovative. Although, the body of the band is truly of old-school nature, here we combined elements or drama rock and used the videogame melodic thinking and framework, which brought much new air to the genre and met today’s competition.

If asked to differentiate Doll’s Diary from other bands in your country, how would you like to respond to it?
Yeah, to be honest, not that many bands play English-based rock in our country. We have a huge rise in Ukrainian music nowadays and I truly encourage that. Furthermore, we know very few bands here playing hard rock or heavy metal. So, considering the case, we make a difference. Nevertheless, every year we are getting closer to Europe and, consequently, more musicians are getting involved in writing English songs. Hopefully, it will soon become a standard.

How compatible are band members with each other?
The atmosphere in a band is really great, even though the music tastes can be somehow different. We are all friends, first and foremost. We live in a small and cosy town, so, everyone knows each other in a small community of professional musicians.

Which bands/ artists do you draw your influences from? Which are your favorite local bands?
Basically, I love listening to Whitesnake, Jorn, Dio, Def Leppard, early Bon Jovi and etc. But that doesn’t mean we imitate the giants of classic rock music. Unconsciously, I could have followed some of their sound or motives (I wouldn’t deny that), but we use a band to build our own identity, prioritizing hard drama rock. Yes, the rock n roll community in Rivne is pretty strong. There are many great local bands. I would give my personal preference to Farinhate, ACOMO, Merva, Premier Atom Band, Bram Stoker, Ot Vinta and Man-Gust as all of them carry the rock n roll spirit thoughout their creative artwork, which is of a great importance to me.

How often do you guys gather together just for fun?
We like having fun very often. Having many good friends, life is always fun. I am a great craft beer fan. So, I never miss a chance to have a glass of craft beer with my buddies.

Doll’s Diary is a very promising formation. Talking about your future, 5 years from now, where do you see yourself?
Thank you for that! Since I was the only writer on the debut album, I would like to encourage more songwriters for future projects, which will definitely make the material more diverse. In a 5 years perspective I expect to have at least a dozen of hits plus regular gigs abroad. I always wanted to play concerts for hard rock audience and carry my music to people who are in dire need of it. And I really hope it will all come true soon.

Well, that’s it. Thanks a lot for your time. Speak out to all your fans and supporters.
Thanks, guys! My pleasure as well! Listen to Rock N Roll and live in a complete freedom. Only rock n roll can set you free in all your efforts and choices. Attend gigs, buy CDs and always support musicians by spreading a word! And we will be for you forevermore!