Interview with Dianadea
The goddess Mephitis as a common thread, we can talk about a concept for Porta Inferi, why Mephitis in particular?
I started from a study on the ancient places of Irpinia, which recalled ancient traditions, songs and I met this ancient place, steeped in poetry (described by Virgil and other poets), spirituality (a goddess of healing but also with elements ctonii) and culture to re-evaluate (the evolution of the relationship of the people with this place by Christianity that often belittles and destroys the wonderful things a territory has). I have therefore decided to devote myself to this concept because it finds its topicality in its initiatory death/life aspects but also in the reworking of ancient traditions that should not be lost. PORTA INFERI is absolutely a concept, the six tracks are all directly linked to this figure.
You have dedicated other works to goddesses, what does the figure of the goddess represent for you?
The goddess for me is a living mirror of my soul, that is, she is a real, living entity, but we are both mirrored in each other in a "border" where we get confused.The divinity in no way denies man, it makes him participate in and responsible for his own life choices. He does not perform miracles, but "creates with", leaving us free to interact and realise our full potential.
In short, no entity that controls what we do, no "moral" law, but a personal ethic matured from this relationship...
In "Porta Inferi" you used the bass as the main instrument to deepen the concept of dark aura, can we say that it is the instrument itself to accompany us through the Door?
I tried to give the bass a dark and hyper fuzzed sound that, basically, more than creating a riffing, would create a background state that would bring the listener to the sense of magma, heaviness, sulfur and an alternation of death/life in the construction of the songs. I tried not to use more than two/three riffs per song, to create a mood more than a song itself...
"Mortiferi" and "Oscura Mefite" are two very interesting tracks in my opinion, what inspired you most for their composition?
I love "Mortiferi" because it has historical elements, the story of the "situ mortiferi" where, for the wheat festival, animals were sacrificed and sent to the Mephite.
It is the fear of the animal that with a slow step and short breath goes towards a death, declaimed in total drama, but which then become "stardust", revived in a new form, participating in the universal cycle. Song in which, I admit, I suffered a lot in reliving the scene and I think it is one of the most dramatic songs on the CD. In Oscura Mefite, as if to create a cultural/spiritual bridge, I contacted a local priestess of the goddess and asked her for a poem to set to music. A poem that expresses the various aspects (including the terrifying ones) of the goddess and that I decided to set to music with a beat of walnuts (a local element with a strong magical/autocthonous flavour given its link with the Benevento walnut) and a synth in a total tribal minimalism.
The artwork, which we remember was made by Simona Arian Cordara, is deliberately 'spartan', is this quality to get closer to the essence of Mefite or the cult itself?
I wanted an artwork that wasn't the usual 'dark figure in a dark wood' proposal because I wanted the concept of deep darkness to be between the lines, to be perceived when listening to the cd. The figure has in fact a mask that hides its chthonian but clearly integrated side.
It's not mocking, it's just present.
It is also an invitation to discover how reality, in its completeness, is often much more complex than the first assessment.
It is an invitation to take off our masks and integrate this aspect, which often frightens us....
It is also the need not to present myself in a 'glossy' way but with a human, imperfect edge....
For the video of Alza Caronte, the second extract after the title track Porta Inferi, you chose to shoot in a cemetery, with a 1930s atmosphere. Are the facets of the Christian religion therefore a source of inspiration?
I am not anti-Christian (simply because nothing would be concluded with a sterile position) but I propose a culture that can make us think using common languages.
The cemetery is, in fact, as the video starts, a "door" on which I go to insert my message, remembering that not even cemeteries should be Christian places, but belong to everyone. It is not an exclusive place, but it has become so because of its cultural and "horrific" domination over consciences.
Every cemetery should have secular places to celebrate different rituals, and a much deeper "right to space" than that which, unfortunately, a culture oppressed by Christianity
In my own way, I have tried to regain a cultural right to experience a Christianised space in a deeply personal way.
But as for me, I prefer cremation or, why not, a tombstone in the ground with a pentacle, a middle finger, just to leave a nice message ...
The abduction of Kore and Hekate's meeting with Demeter near the door, what was it like to set to music what for us is only an image?
When I wrote the text and the music for ALZA CARONTE, where this is mentioned, I got really angry. Is it possible that a place with such wealth should be demolished to put in a woman named Felicita (I don't use the name "saint" or reverential capitals) and the people simply remember it all with an "ALZA CARONTE?"
Geez, the PORTA INFERI where we have one of the most stupendous myths reduced to a paltry memory?
So I vented my anger with what I would define, even if only with the shaman drum, a black metal rant because another beautiful area was culturally and spiritually raped...
Porta Inferi, a place and object of interest for writers and others. Dante (Canto III of Inferno) and Virgil, to whom you refer are definitely the most important, but also in the Bible it is mentioned by the prophet Isaiah and even in the Roman ritual of funerals. What inspired you in the creation of the new album?
You see, the PORTA INFERI mentioned by Virgil is located in Rocca San Felice, a small village a few kilometres from home.
That was the spark.
A historical beauty just a few steps from home, with such vibration and beauty. In this period of cultural homologation it was also a wonderful message, hopefully stimulating curiosity and research into the subject matter.
Hell has always fascinated, its door perhaps more so. Religion, curiosity or fear?
The underworld aspects of my life are what offer shelter and protection from those who, at times, I consider the real monsters, dedicated exclusively to consumerism and wealth. For me, the underworld is absolutely fascinating, it does not bargain with my "morals" and it does not put me in a position to live my life to "earn" the boring paradise of a hyper-egoistic monotheistic god.
What has changed from the birth of Paganism to its rebirth through Wicca and Druidism?
Nowadays you can become a druid or a shaman with 3 paid lessons and, if you become a master, do courses yourself.
I mean, is there a large part of the new age that is simply a Christianity revisited, made of hyper positivism, sword light, good angels who have logorrhea, divinations for the sole purpose of "he will come back"?
I think what is missing is the concept of deep integration of the person, which was so vivid before. The goddess Mephitis is an example. Healing water but birds died if they got too close to the fumes.
When, in paganism, we only extrapolate light and beauty, we are returning to dual Christianity, which is such a defeat for man...
What would Mephitis look like nowadays?
Well a jovial pink dressed girl who could pierce you with a glance.... What you don't expect and yet always ahead of your eyes.
You have as much space as you want to finish the interview.
I would like to thank those who have had the patience to read me. I hope that my PORTA INFERI can stimulate sincere curiosity about the themes and the music that accompanies it, conceived in a very simple way but with great attention to nuances, themes and arrangements.
The CD is being released in a limited number of copies and can be requested at this email: email@example.com .
On my YouTube channel STRIX INFERA you can find vocal experiments, traditions, dirges, pieces in dialect, local tales, orphic hymns, ..... In short, I conceive Dianadea not only as music but as a global movement on the territory and the enhancement of ancient practices and culture.