Liv Kristine

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Liv Kristine Espenæs Krull
Leaves Eyes 20070404 Fnac 24.jpg
Background information
Birth name Liv Kristine Espenæs
Also known as Liv Kristine
Born (1976-02-14) 14 February 1976 (age 38)
Origin Stavanger, Norway
Genres Gothic metal, symphonic metal, folk metal, Viking metal, Industrial metal, pop rock
Occupations Singer-songwriter
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1994-present
Labels Napalm Records
Associated acts Theatre of Tragedy, Leaves' Eyes, Cradle of Filth, Delain

Liv Kristine Espenæs Krull (born 14 February 1976 in Stavanger, Norway), better known as Liv Kristine, is a singer/songwriter who performed and composed songs mostly for various sub-genres of heavy metal music. She currently works in close association with her husband and leader of the German band Atrocity, Alexander Krull. She started her career in the music business as vocalist for the gothic metal band Theatre of Tragedy and is the current vocalist for the symphonic metal band Leaves' Eyes.


Interested in music from an early age, Liv Kristine joined the Norwegian gothic metal band Theatre of Tragedy in 1994 as a backup singer, but was soon sharing lead vocals duties with Raymond István Rohonyi.[1] She was fired from Theatre of Tragedy in 2003, a fact she learned about through the band's website.[2] She had been living in Germany since 1996 and collaborating with the death metal band Atrocity, whose singer Alexander Krull she married on 3 July 2003.[3] With the five musicians from Atrocity she formed a new band, Leaves' Eyes, in August 2003.[4] She has also released four solo albums of pop rock, the most recent of which was released in September 2012 through Napalm Records.

In 2005, Liv Kristine was nominated for a Grammy award with Cradle of Filth for the song "Nymphetamine".[5]

Kristine has a soprano vocal range.[6]

Private life[edit]

On 3 July 2003 Liv Kristine married Atrocity vocalist Alexander Krull.[3] They have a son, Leon Alexander.[3]

Her younger sister, Carmen Elise Espenæs, is the vocalist of the German symphonic/folk metal band Midnattsol[7] and of the Norwegian gothic/folk metal band Savn.[8] Liv Kristine and her husband Alexander are vegetarians.[9]

Contributions to music[edit]

Kristine helped to pioneer the beauty and the beast vocals approach, later used by many other successful bands such as Tristania, After Forever, Epica and Within Temptation in their beginnings. The term "beauty and the beast" refers to an aesthetic contrasting "angelic" female vocals with male growls or aggressive singing.[10] Paradise Lost and The Gathering had already made use of this technique on some songs from their earlier albums but it was the Norwegian Theatre of Tragedy, Kristine's former band, that first released an entire album devoted to this approach with their self-titled debut in 1995.

A simultaneous duet between soprano and death vocals can be heard in this 24 second sample from Theatre of Tragedy's self-titled debut album.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

A second album Velvet Darkness They Fear arrived in the following year.[11] Theatre of Tragedy's third album Aégis in 1998 saw the band "venturing into fresh musical territory".[11] The piano was replaced by electronic keyboards while Raymond Rohonyi opted to discard his death growls in favor of a "soft, spoken, sometimes whispering voice".[12] The music was more clean and soft,[12] "stripped of guitar harshness" but with a "near flawless execution" that "prompted many European critics to award Aégis perfect review scores".[11]

For over a decade, this beauty and the beast aesthetic has flourished with many representatives across the European continent.[10] Cradle of Filth has also been known to make use of this approach through guest female vocalists such as Liv Kristine and Sarah Jezebel Deva.[13] A few critics have since lamented that the approach has been "done to death by countless bands"[14] to the point that it has become something of a cliché in the genre.




  1. ^ "Liv Kristine – Official Website". Retrieved 2013-10-28. 
  2. ^ "Ex-THEATRE OF TRAGEDY Singer Says She Was Betrayed And Deceived By Her Bandmates". Roadrunner Records. 27 August 2003. Archived from the original on 3 October 2003. Retrieved 14 April 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c Dunphy, John (15 July 2005). "Liv Kristine Espenaes Krull (Leaves Eyes) : Interview". Music Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  4. ^ Reesman, Bryan. "Atrocity: Twenty Years of Passion, Progression and Perseverance," Metal Maniacs, December 2006, p. 113
  5. ^ "Artists - LIv Kristine". Napalm Records. 2012. Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  6. ^ Interview with Liv Kristine about 'Njord'- Metalexperience webzine, december 2009. (2009-12-16). Retrieved on 2012-08-05.
  7. ^ Nordlys – CD von Midnattsol. (2007-12-27). Retrieved on 2012-08-05.
  8. ^
  9. ^ Leaves´Eyes. Retrieved on 2012-08-05.
  10. ^ a b Reesman, Bryan (November 1, 2007). "They Will Rise: Metal's female ranks on the move". Archived from the original on May 29, 2007 (incorrect value). Retrieved August 9, 2013. 
  11. ^ a b c Sharpe-Young, Garry. "Theatre of Tragedy". MusicMight. Retrieved 2013-09-25. 
  12. ^ a b Eldefors, Vincent. "Aégis review". Retrieved 2008-04-18. 
  13. ^ Sharpe-Young, Garry. "Cradle of Filth". MusicMight. Retrieved 2008-04-25. 
  14. ^ Begrand, Adrien. "Blood and Thunder: The Great Beast Resurrected". PopMatters. Retrieved 2008-04-18. 

External links[edit]