Posts Tagged ‘italy’

Simple Minds / Street Fighting Years 4CD box set

On 6th March Simple Minds will release a brand new deluxe version of the classic album ‘Street Fighting Years’ as a 4-CD box set, including the original album remastered at Abbey Road plus a host of B-sides, edits and 12″ remixes. “Street Fighting Years” is the eighth studio album by Scottish rock band Simple Minds, released in May 1989. It was notably the last of the band’s albums to feature keyboard player/composer/founder member Mick MacNeil. MacNeil has subsequently mentioned that “Jim (Kerr) had already started talking about making changes” and the credits for the album suggested that Simple Minds had officially become a trio of the only three remaining founder members, It also includes a previously unissued Verona live show from 1989 plus brand new book including a new interview with Trevor Horn. Also available as 2-LP, 2-CD or remastered single CD.

Produced by Trevor Horn and Stephen Lipson (fresh from their work on Paul McCartney’s Flowers in the Dirt) the record ended up sounding very different from the previous album (1985’s Once Upon A Time).

The band were initially expecting the producing duo to deliver what Charlie Burchill describes as  “their thing” (meaning synths, sequencers etc.) but Horn and Lipson didn’t think that was the right approach, with Trevor saying (in the excellent Daryl Easlea sleeve note interviews) that “I don’t think the Frankie thing would have suited them. I wouldn’t impose something on someone”. Jim Kerr says “We thought Trevor and Steve would be the answer to everything. We thought we’d hitch our wagon to them. It turned out that they likewise thought they had taken their whole thing to a max and thought it would be great to work with a band who could just knock it out.”

They ended up exploring atmospheric soundscapes and incorporating slide guitars, accordions and in general exuding a more celtic/folk rock vibe (the album was recorded in the Highlands of Scotland). Street Fighting Years delivered the band’s first and only UK number one single ‘Belfast Child’ (which was the lead track on the ‘Ballad of the Streets EP). Three further singles were all top 20 UK hits.

The four-CD box is packaged like the previous Simple Minds super deluxe sets and comes with a hardcover book with photos and interviews with the band and Trevor Horn and a Simple Minds poster. It offers a remastered version of the original album on the first disc (by Andrew Walter), a selection of 15 edits, B-sides and remixes on disc two and then two CDs featuring a previously unissued live concert from L’Arena in Verona, Italy (recorded on 15 September 1989). Sadly, there are no demos and or a surround sound mix of the album as part of this offering.

Simple Minds / Street Fighting Years 2LP vinyl reissue

“In a self-experiment, I drew my face with black thread. The first to be affected were the eyes and mouth, because I could not see or speak – communication was destroyed….the details of my face seemed to be gone and, at the same time, frozen. It was similar to the act of mummification. I reached for the scissors and freed myself”

These are the words of Annegret Soltau, the German avant-garde feminist artist, whose work graces the cover of Julie’s Haircut’s transcendent new album. It’s a piece that maintains as much of its power and relevance today as in the time of its inception 40 years ago, yet forms a curious parallel with a record that is nothing if not the sound of psychic liberation from the shackles of oppression and of the everyday.

‘In The Silence Electric’, the latest record from a band with a quarter-century-history, is notable for its deft balance between hypnotic radiance and otherworldly intensity, between beatific calm and palpable anger. Yet it’s also a record which has arrived through a strange process of osmosis from a band confident enough to let subconscious and metaphysical aspects steer them in the appropriate directions.

The result was nonetheless also informed by a recent live soundtrack project the band embarked upon in tandem with Josef Von Sterberg’s 1928 classic ‘The Last Command’, as well as recent visits by the band’s Andrea Rovacchi to Mozambique, where he was subsumed by the local music and culture, bringing back a finger piano which makes its presence felt amidst the polyrhythms and primal scream therapy of ‘Pharaoh’s Dream’.

For all the nature of its divings, the result is a collection of supremely confident and cohesive ditties that sees the deep-end diabolism and mantric intensity of their Rocket debut, 2017’s ‘Invocation And Ritual Dance Of My Demon Twin’ expanded into a righteous fury and
incandescent splendour. Whether it’s the heavy-lidded rapture of ‘Lord Help Me Find The Way’ (like Spiritualized transposed to 1970s Berlin) the menacing dream-state of ‘In Return’ or the Suicide-damaged psychic assault that is ‘Sorcerer’, all is subsumed by a bold singularity of intent, amidst a colourful firestorm of electronic monomania, jazz-tinged atonality and indelibly memorable vocal hooks.

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Even when we write about very dreamlike situations, or metaphors, we always address very real, concrete aspects and problems of our life” says Luca “There is a lot of the classic dualism between sex and death on this record. Sometimes it’s more dark and gritty (“In Return”), sometimes it’s more elevating (“Anticipation of the Night”).

“There’s a theme springing from the title of the record and the photos of Annegret Soltau that deliver some sense of helplessness, suffocation, difficulty in communication” notes Luca. Yet for all this – and paradoxically enough – ‘In The Silence Electric’ is both this mysterious and rebellious band’s most adventurous and most direct record to date – not to mention an ever more compelling transmission from renowned experts in altered states.

Released October 4th, 2019
The album’s main theme is related to time conception and a transitional journey; where the deepest, darkest place is lit by the furthest, brightest points. The tracklist order depends on the format with one transition on cd/digital, and two transitions (one per side) on vinyl/cassette. Visually inspired by the movie La Cicatrice Intérieure, starring Nico.
released March 23rd, 2012.  Never heard an album that contains shoegaze, lysergic psych and stoner rock so successfully. This record pushes all of those buttons effortlessly…a truly unique and epic record. Stars Reach The Abyss is a very accurate musical account of 50 years of drug music.

Arranged and performed by Fernando Nuti (vocals, guitars, sitar), Diego Menegaldo (guitars, vocals), Stefano Bidoggia (bass) & Dario Lucchesi (drums, percussion). Music and words by Fernando Nuti. Produced by Pierluigi Ballarin & Stefano Moretti at T.U.P. Studio (Brescia), except “Salar” produced by Stefano Morbiato & Lorenzo Michieletti at Yack Studio (Treviso) and “Dry Air Everywhere (Breath Into You Mix)” produced by John Wills at The Imaginarium (Perth, UK). Mastered by Jon Astley at Close To The Edge Mastering (Twickenham, UK). Artwork by Fernando Nuti & Diego Menegaldo. New Candys live are Fernando Nuti, Andrea Volpato, Alessandro Boschiero & Dario Lucchesi.

Released on Foolica / Fuzz Club.

Lay Llamas essentially is Italy’s Nicola Giunta creating multi-textured psychedelic rock. On Thuban he has a few guest to help him out including Goat and Clinic, but this is his show of rhythmic dalliances into north Africa, Thailand and the Beta Band’s Edinburgh.

Dwelling in the night sky of the Northern hemisphere, Thuban (named after the Arabic for ‘snake’ also known as Alpha Draconis, and sometimes as the ‘dragon’s tail’) was the star closest to the North pole from the fourth to the second millennium BC. Yet in a migration that perhaps allows us to consider our own insignificance in the realm of the cosmos, its never-ending trajectory will mean that it will once again become the polar star by 20346AD. It’s a star system powered by mystical significance enough for both Matt Groening to include it in Futurama and for David Icke to consider it the homeland of the shapeshifting reptiles that he maintains secretly control Earth. For Nicola Giunta of Lay Llamas however, this mysterious point in the night sky offers pause for thought. “A polar star is something that drives the travellers towards a safe place. But in the age we’re living now it seems hard to recognise a polar star. Do we have to wait for that? How many times? Do we have to look in another direction?”

Nonetheless, the personal journey Giunta has embarked on in the four years since Lay Llamas’ Rocket Recordings debut Østro has been characterised as much by forward motion as cosmic drift. A number of smaller releases on labels such as Backwards, 4 Zero and ArteTetra followed, as the live band that notably supported Goat at London’s Roundhouse and effortlessly managed a psychic demolition job of considerable force at Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia was replaced by a different constellation of musicians. Yet following the departure of vocalist Gioele Valenti, Thuban is very much Nicola’s brainchild, involving as many of twelve different musicians yet with him writing lyrics, singing, producing, mixing and recording at his home, whilst utilising new instruments from marimba to sax to kalimba to pilot this craft to dimensions unknown. The result has been a step beyond the kraut-damaged psychedelic mantras of Østro into a realm seemingly without boundaries, one in which a pan-global fascination with rhythmic hypnosis and an unquenchable experimental zeal manifests hermetically-aligned revelations aplenty.

It’s as much a voyage of discovery for himself as the listener, as he reveals, both stylistically and creatively. “Everything around us is transforming, always! You know, I’m not a proper songwriter, I consider myself a sound crafter. An experimental alchemist of sounds and visions. And sometimes I start with an idea and finish with something really different” True to form, Thuban maps out terrain where collaborators including members of Clinic (on the sax-assisted ritualistic darkness of ‘Cults And Rites From The Black Cliff’) and Goat (on the jubilant tropicalia serenade ‘Altair’) can contribute to the air of earthy vibrancy and fertile exploration. Moreover, Mark Stewart of The Pop Group’s spoken-word contributions to the searing ‘Fight Fire With Fire’ (styled by Nicola as ‘dystopian afrobeat’) steers the album to new pinnacles of intensity informed by science fiction yet with explicitly political force. For all the outward exploration of its sonics, and even considering the excursions through inner space that they resemble, this is an album with its feet firmly on the ground in the here and now.

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“I was born and grew up in Sicily, but now I live in the north part of Italy” says Nicola. “That extremely south part of the Europe represents the main gate for a lot of people that coming from Africa, Asia and the Middle-East. A real cultural melting process is on the way. And there’s not any kind of fascist law that can stop this. Thuban talks about ancient sea travels, ancient cultures, ancient rites, but also about today’s travellers, travellers from all ages. Travellers that are still looking for their Thuban, for their polar star to reach a safe place to live with their family.”

Released June 15th, 2018

The album title can be read as a cinematographic reference, where there’s fiction there’s no real pain. During the writing process we kept in mind the release format of a 12” vinyl and treated it as an extra influential element. The first side at 33 rpm with most of the songs written meticulously, the second side (tracks 8-11) we acted the opposite way, no limits, one long medley without overthinking, at 45 rpm. Visually inspired by Refn’s last movies and Argento’s early movies.

Written, performed and produced by New Candys. 
Stefano Bidoggia: bass.
Dario Lucchesi: drums, percussion.
Diego Menegaldo: guitars, vocals.
Fernando Nuti: vocals, guitars, sitar.

Guest vocals on “Sermon” by Julia Hummer (juleah.com).

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Sonic Jesus

Italy’s Sonic Jesus are one of the most revered outputs in the modern psych-rock scene. Following a split-single with Austin heavyweights The Black Angels, in 2015 the band released the hypnotic, droning psych-rock of their debut album release “Neither Virtue Nor Anger” to international acclaim. Earlier this year they released LP2, titled “Grace” it saw the band reinvent themselves, delving into more melodic, synth-driven horizons and channelling an expansive 80s-indebted new wave/post-punk sound.

Following a deep creative frenzy on the road during the European tour in support of Grace, Sonic Jesus are back already with two new songs  pushing past previous boundaries once again and reappearing with a new-found direction. The impassioned, introspective post-punk of Grace and take it down a sinister path. Whilst the reverb-drenched vocals, 80s synths and drum machines are still there, this is a far darker affair – the haunting, motorik psych-rock of their early material coming back with a vengeance.

Sonic Jesus is helmed by multi-instrumentalist Tiziano Veronese who handles vocals and all songwriting and recording duties, lyrics are composed by Marco Barzetti. The project was formed in Doganella di Ninfa, Italy in 2012 and has since gone on to tour relentlessly, sharing the stage with Damo Suzuki, Dead Skeletons, A Place To Bury Strangers and Singapore Sling along the way.

SONIC JESUS – ” Dead Man “

Posted: November 28, 2017 in ALBUMS, MUSIC
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Its Really exciting to find that Italian band Sonic Jesus will be releasing a new 7″ from ‘Dead Man’ s due for release December 2nd to coincide with the London Show of their upcoming European tour, hosted at The Waiting Room. You can stream ‘Dead Man’ and the B-side, ‘Transpose’,
The two new tracks take the impassioned, introspective post-punk of Grace and take it down a sinister path. Whilst the reverb-drenched vocals, 80s synths and drum machines are still there, this is a far darker affair – the haunting, motorik psych-rock of their early material coming back with a vengeance.

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The New Candys will release their next album "Bleeding Magenta" on October 6th

“Bleeding Magenta” is the third album of New Candys, coming out on October 6th for the Fuzz Club Records.

The Venetian band, one of the most international realities that exist in Italy (judging also from the coming dates, between Italy, Germany, Poland, Denmark, England, Austria …).

The record will be released in vinyl, a media that is also served on the artistic side: “When we started writing Bleeding Magenta we considered vinyl support 12 as a creative stimulus,” the band says. “The limited minute that gives the first 33-lap side has forced us to skim the songs.”

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FIRST ITALIAN SHOW OF FRANK STEFANKO’S PHOTOGRAPHS OF SPRINGSTEEN TO TIE IN WITH THE “RIVER TOUR”.

Bruce Springsteen’s  River Tour 2016 has just finished shows in Rome and Milan in Italy this July. We’re very proud to announce that fhe first ever exhibition in Italy of Frank Stefanko’s historic photographs will open at Wall Of Sound Gallery on July 2nd. Frank has captured Springsteen mainly between 1978 and 1982, but also later. The most recent images in the show were taken in 2004. Frank’s images were used on the covers of milestone albums like “Darkness On The Edge Of Town and The album currently on tour “The River”His will also be the cover shot for Bruce Springsteen’s upcoming autobiography, Born To Run , due out on Sept. 27th. Stefanko will attend the opening to meet his Italian fans and sign copies of his book Days of Hope and Dreams (Giorni di sogni e speranza), published in Italy by Arcana.

“Jungleland“: Stefanko & Springsteen ad Alba

The epic shots of Bruce Springsteen on display in Alba

ALBA (CN) July 18th – It ‘still soaring enthusiasm for the Milanese and the concerts at the Circus Maximus in Rome the’ Boss’ of world rock Bruce Springsteen . And just in Piedmont, more precisely in Alba (CN), many springsteeniani can keep dreaming with the rocker from New Jersey: from July 2nd to 4th September, The Wall Of Sound Gallery ,  it is possible to visit ‘ Jungleland’ – The Photography of Frank Stefanko,  an exhibition of the American photographer who has had the good fortune to capture Bruce between 1978 and 1982, and beyond, over and over again. Increasingly Stefanko are the covers of albums as fundamental Darkness On The Edge Of Town and The River , and it is no accident that the photo you chose Springsteen for his current “River Tour” around the world, is just a click of Stefanko. The same goes for the cover of his autobiography ‘Born To Run’ for worldwide release on September 27th .  

Living in New Jersey, Frank Stefanko has been making photographs for over fifty years. Self taught as a boy, inspired by film noir movies and the old masters such as Edward Steichen, Alfred Stieglitz, and Diane Arbus, he excelled in art and photography both in high school and college.

His work graces the album covers of Bruce Springsteen’s Darkness On The Edge Of Town and The River, Southside Johnny’s Hearts of Stone album cover, and Patti Smith’s The Arista Years 1975/2000 box set cover. Frank’s photographs also appear in Bruce Springsteen’s Live 75/85, Greatest Hits, Tracks and The Essential Bruce Springsteen.

Frank is the author of the book Days of Hope and Dreams / An intimate portrait of Bruce Springsteen, which has recently been released in the second edition. He is also the author of Patti Smith / American Artist which features beautiful images of a young emerging artist, Ms Smith, from 1970 to 1980.

Frank’s work has toured in two museum shows, Bruce Springsteen, Troubadour of the Highway, which, at the time, broke attendance records at The Frederick Weisman Museum in Minneapolis, The Cranbrook Museum near Detroit, The Experience Music project in Seattle, and The Newark Museum in New Jersey. On 2012 the Sound and Vision: Monumental Rock Photography has toured several museums in the US.

Beyond his rock photography, Frank has been assembling a portfolio of landscape photographs that feature places where the footprint of man has not yet touched. In addition, Frank is working on compiling his collection of vintage photographs, mostly from the New York underground of the CBGB’s, Max’s Kansas City era. Shot in the Seventies, these photos feature individuals, locations, and scenes from a unique era that nurtured art, music, and poetry.

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Shindig Magazine has called them “one of Psych’s best kept secrets”. combined with the sonic intensity of A Place To Bury Strangers. Last year they grasped the attention of Psych Nouveau godfathers The Black Angels, who were enthusiastic of sharing a 10″ split single, collecting astonishing reviews .Shortly after getting together in 2012, the band from Doganella Del Ninfa, Italy, released their first self-titled EP and almost immediately sold-out, followed by their mind-blowing London live debut at The Shacklewell Arms. Since then, they have taken part in the Reverb Conspiracy compilation (curated by Fuzz Club and Austin Psych Fest) twice and toured intensively around Europe. They also shared stage with Damo Suzuki and collaborated with iconic Icelandic artist Jón Sæmundur aka Nonni Dead of Dead Skeletons, who did the cover art for the EP and joined them on stage at Eindhoven Psych Lab 2014. After leaving their fans lying in wait for a follow-up for two years, they are now about to release their debut album ‘Neither Virtue Nor Anger’, a double LP out on Fuzz Club Records. Recorded in their studio between 2013 and 2014, ‘Neither Virtue Nor Anger’ is something beyond the colourful blend of 60s Psychedelia, Folk, Krautrock, Shoegaze and Post-Punk anticipated by Locomotive. The more it progresses, the more it turns into a desperate stomping Bacchanalia, spiced up with an hypnotic flavour and distorted atmosphere a la Faust. Obscure ceremonies for Greek-Roman mystery rituals, songs like My Lunacy and Cancer are the perfect soundtrack for a futuristic and dystopian Fellini’s Satyricon. The album features the artwork of prominent Italian artist Mirco Maracci. His work has been exhibited in Palazzo Taverna in Roma in 2014, along with Andy Warhol, Giorgio De Chirico, Keith Haring and Amedeo Modigliani.