WINTER IN EDEN, a
dark yet beautiful cocktail of power and passion.
Their music builds from delightful symphonic instrumentals to
crunching aggressive Metal. It is identifiable by its compelling
vocals, muscular riffs, memorable hooks, swirling keyboards together
with pounding bass and thunderous drums.
Between 2009 and 2013, Winter in Eden had released two full
length albums, two EP’s and have entertained fans with numerous
tours and festival appearances. The debut album 'Awakening' was
recognised as one of the albums of the year. The track 'Lies',
from 'Echoes of Betrayal' was awarded Classic Rock Magazine’s
'track of the day' and they have been nominated for ‘Best
New Band’ (2012/2013), ‘Best Live Act’ (2013/2014)
and ‘Best Female Singer’ (2012/2013/2014) at the annual
Classic Rock Society Awards.
Towards the end of 2014, Winter In Eden released their highly
anticipated third studio album ‘Court of Conscience’.
Recorded in Holland, it contains eleven songs which build and
further refine the unique style that is Winter in Eden. Produced
by Ruud Jolie (Within Temptation) and mixed by Stefan Helleblad
(Within Temptation), it contains live strings and features guest
vocals by Jermain van der Bogt (For All We Know/Ayreon) and Nathaly
Heijne with an unmistakeable narrative by multi-award winning
Damian Wilson (Threshold/Headspace/Maiden United). The result
is powerful, modern and balanced. The album continues to be extremely
well received as evidenced by Guitar Techniques Magazine who made
it their ‘Album of the Month’ and Powerplay Magazine
who awarded it a full score of ten. The track ‘Before It
Began’ has been playlisted on BBC Radio both regionally
and nationally and was featured by ‘Whispering’ Bob
Harris (OBE) on his BBC Radio 2 show.
Winter In Eden’s energetic live performances have been
enjoyed throughout the UK and Europe alongside many artists including
Stream Of Passion (NL), The Pineapple Thief (UK) and Coma (PL).
When not playing to capacity crowds whilst touring, they can often
be witnessed captivating new fans on festival stages. Most notably,
during main-stage performances at Cambridge Rock Festival, The
Dames of Darkness Festival and when chosen to headline the UK’s
first ever Symphonic Rock/Metal festival: Northern Symphony.
“Winter in Eden are the best female-fronted symphonic
rock band Britain has to offer right now”
Classic Rock Magazine
“The patronage of the biggest act in female-fronted
symph prog must be earned and sure enough, Winter in Eden fulfil
their side of the bargain”
“That’s just brilliant”
‘Whispering’ Bob Harris – BBC Radio 2
“The band stands out for their song writing, their
vocals and their musicianship. And they’re British too.
Every song on here is first class”
“Fabulous set by a band destined for greatness”
Classic Rock Society
“All the quality and all the potential”
Vicky Johnson as known by Sam Cull
I first met Vicky when she joined a prog rock/covers band I’d
been playing with for a few months. Steve and Vicky both joined
at the same time as we needed a keyboard player too. As soon as
we had played the first song it was obvious that we’d found
a very talented vocalist. Not only that but she is also an incredibly
talented pianist, playing some additional keys on some tracks,
and all round musician.
We had been playing for a while in that band but we never really
had our own style and so we eventually drifted apart. Then a few
months down the line I was contacted by Vicky to ask if I wanted
to be the guitarist in a new project. Of course knowing I’d
be playing with great players I jumped at the chance and Winter
In Eden was born.
Vicky is a very straight forward and, 'to the point' person, which
is the kind of person I get on with as you always know what she
thinks and where you stand. She’s also incredibly generous
and is always happy to help out with anything anyone has any problems
with. Along with Ian, she keeps the rest of us in check and is
the chief organiser of the band.
Musically, Vicky is fantastic. Her vocal melody lines are always
fitting to the music, but not always the obvious, and so she keeps
everything interesting. She’s never short of ideas and is
very passionate about how she feels a song should develop (always
good for keeping myself in order as I have a tendency to go off
on a tangent at times). As mentioned earlier Vicky is also a classically
trained pianist, and is always full of ideas to add to the keyboards
or a guitar melody.
Lastly, but most definitely not least, is her voice. Vicky has
a very interesting and unique voice with a lot of body and an
instantly recognisable tone. If you hear the vocal, you can tell
it’s a Winter In Eden track! Of all the things Vicky brings
to the table, her voice is most definitely her greatest asset
and live she never puts a note wrong which is just incredible!
Without Vicky there would not be a Winter In Eden, it’s
a simple as that.
Sam Cull as known by Steve Hauxwell
My first impression of Sam was based purely on what I’d
heard him play on ‘Echoes of Betrayal’ whilst preparing
for my audition in 2012. I was particularly impressed with his
rhythm guitar parts and the way he had approached the melodies.
Many guitarists are too eager to charge up and down the fret board
and squeeze out as many notes as their fingers will manage. Sam
is quite the opposite, his solos are tuneful and meaningful and
not a note is wasted, yet it is his solid ‘riffing’
that is his strong point. Thankfully, when meeting him during
rehearsals my initial impression held true, he doesn’t spend
every second that the band isn’t playing showcasing the
new solo he’s working on! Creatively he is one of the driving
forces of the band, bringing great riffs and ideas to the table.
Along with myself, he’s also into Rock and Metal, and so
I find his guitar parts truly inspirational.
Sam’s character is quite laid back and he is generally
happy to ‘go with the flow’ but at the same time very
driven and focussed. He is 100% for the band and reliable. Socially,
he’s great fun too and will often be the life and soul of
Steve Johnson as known by Ian Heddle
The first time I met Steve ‘Stevie J ’ was at the
first rehearsal Wayne and myself attended for the band that was
shortly to become Winter In Eden. My first thoughts on Steve were
that it was good to see someone who was actually a keyboard player
– someone who didn’t just bash out block chords to
fill in the space like a rhythm guitarist. Instead here was someone
who put a lot of thought and effort into the parts he played,
the voices he chooses and the layering of the sounds.
This is even more so when he is not restricted to two hands, and
is using the computers to build up arrangements which can sometimes
stretch to dozens of individual and carefully planned parts. In
essence Steve is the keyboard player and chief orchestrator of
the band. I think he’s a frustrated film score writer. The
parts that Steve writes add an extra dimension to the Winter In
Eden sound, they can add a range of layers and emotions and all
with unique a sense of melody and style.
He loves his toys - one man can never have enough keyboards! Steve's
studio seems to expand on a regular basis with keyboards, rack
gear and computer equipment – all put to good use for the
band and he also has a good range in vest tops!
Steve is very passionate about his music and the band and can
get very frustrated when we have the occasional problem or a hitch
with a venue or promoter, but I think this is only because he
doesn’t want the audience to have anything less than the
best experience when they come to see us perform.
Steve is also Captain of the SS Windelfel
Steve J is proud to be an official Quiklok endorsee.
Ian Heddle as known by Vicky Johnson
When I first met Ian I thought he was friendly but quiet. I
remember asking him what he thought about Mark King and he thought
that he was, "a bit too flashy" for his liking to which
I responded, “we would have to agree to disagree”
because the man is a legend in my eyes.
It took a while for me to get to know Ian. He is an incredibly
private person. He is definitely a mediator and tries to find
the middle ground for the sake of the band. On the other hand
if he really believes in something then he will speak up and not
back down. I really admire that because being in a band is all
about compromise and he does, but it is so important not to compromise
what you believe in. Saying that, I still feel that there is a
lot I don’t know about Ian and he is not the kind of person
to volunteer information. You have to specifically ask him a question
and don’t be surprised if the answer is simply “yes”
He is an unbelievably talented musician. The bass guitar is not
his main instrument. He is a classically trained pianist but in
a former band they needed a bass player so he learnt to play bass.
He is focused and has the ability to listen and write what the
song needs, not what necessarily shows off his skills. I think
the bass lines he is starting to write are becoming unique to
him. He won’t just play it safe and I would have confidence
in him to play any bass line no matter how complicated. Ian loves
to perform and comes alive on stage giving 110% to every performance.
He is a machine. If you are writing a song, it will be Ian that
remembers the arrangement of the song and the chords after playing
it through only once, even if it was weeks ago. Not only that,
he is unbelievably hard-working and never stops. I don’t
think he knows how to say “no”. He can always be relied
upon to put the band first. Ian puts in a lot of work behind the
scenes which can be a thankless task but he takes it in his stride
and doesn’t want or need praise.
He doesn’t have an ego and that’s refreshing.
Although he may the member of the band that fans probably feel
they know the least, he should not be underestimated and is an
essential part of the Winter In Eden team
Steve Hauxwell as known by Steve Johnson
It was apparent, even after the first few rehearsals, that Steve
would fast become an important member of Winter In Eden. He spent
a lot of time getting up to speed with the current set lists and
used his own drumming style to give the old songs a new lift without
losing our familiar sound. He has also taken on more of the non-musical
workload of being in a band. Further, he has slotted perfectly into
the writing process, the results of which can be heard in our third
full length album, Court Of Conscience. His dedication for simply
travelling from Wales to the North East of England for rehearsals,
recording, meetings etc would not be an option for many.
His live performance is something of a spectacle too! His maiden
performance took us by surprise, as we did not realise how much
of a showman he was. With stick throwing (and catching of course),
standing up to hype the crowd and the release of all that energy
(from all the kebabs consumed on the way to the venue) he doesn’t
want to be hidden behind the scaffolding that is needed to hold
his huge drum kit in place.
Mr Steve “F flat” “The Moose” Hauxwell
aka “Shaft” is a really great guy, has a fantastic sense
of humour and has got more nicknames than the rest of us put together!
As to how he got those nicknames is another story ….
Steve uses Amedia cymbals and is a proud member of the Liberty