Raw Power will be releasing their new album Inferno on July 9th. But what else do we know about them? Is there a better way to find out than to ask the band themselves? Thanks to vocalist Mauro Codeluppi for stepping up to answer our questions…
We are basically all from the same area. I live in Poviglio (that is where the band started , 30 years ago), Marco the bass player in Parma, Paolo the guitarist in Calerno (that’s 10 minutes from me) and GianMarco the drummer in Rolo -about 20 km from us. We are in northern Italy, to give you an idea we are about 100km from Milan.
How did you meet?
Marco the bass player was in the band about 10 years ago, then left and he is now back with us. We had some friends in common so when we started looking for a bass player he came, had the audition and we took him right away. Paolo was playing in a local band of friends of ours and after our guitarist decided to quit the band suddenly we asked him if he wanted to join.
A couple of years ago we had a bit of a problem with our drummer so we decided that maybe it would have been a good thing for everyone if we parted company, so we then tried a couple of drummers and when Gianmarco came along we knew that we had found what we needed.
How long have you been playing as a band?
The band has been playing since 1981. I’m the only original member left in the band (touch wood!). During these many years the band has been through a few changes in the line-up but especially for the first 10 years the line-up was quite stable.
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?
At the time my brother had been playing the guitar for a few years and had a band called Off Limit, mainly doing covers. When he decided that he had had enough of doing other people’s songs he got another group of people together (myself included) and the first thing we decided on was the name of the band. After talking a bit we saw that one man and his band was in the top wish list of all of us, and that was Iggy Pop and his Stooges, so from there Raw Power – one of everyone’s favourite songs, so it was an easy choice.
What are your influences?
Since we started there have always been people within the band with different tastes. My brother and I have always been into hardcore from the start, mainly from the US, but with GBH, Discharge, Exploited and a few more from the UK, while most of the others in the band have always been into metal.
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
Well definitely a mix of hardcore with metal. Someone called it Crossover, to us it’s just… whatever you want to call it! It’s what we like!
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
Not really, but in general all the lyrics are about the things that happen around me, that could be locally or when we are travelling. Some are inspired by some books I read, and lots come from whatever is happening around the world, which unfortunately most of the times are bad things.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
I want to think of it as tight and energetic. I hate dead times when we are on stage, I’m not a talker to start with so I prefer to just let our songs do the talking. Often I get told off by the others because I get cross if they stop between songs for a drink! The number of shows? I’m afraid that is impossible to tell, I really haven’t the faintest idea, but I would say from 1984 (that was the first time we toured the USA) to today we have done a lot.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
One of the weirdest I always remember, happened the first or second year in America. I think it was either Dallas or Baltimore. As soon as we went on stage people started screaming that a load of police cars were surrounding the building and sure enough after a few minutes the place was storming with them. On stage I was trying to tell the people to stay calm while kids in the audience were instead shouting to go and fight the police.
You have to remember that we were there illegally so if they arrested us it would have been straight on a plane back home. So there we are on stage trying to calm people down when this policeman comes on stage, starts pushing us around and then he just helps us to get out of a back door, and just tells us to get the fuck out if we don’t want any trouble, which is exactly what we did! Of course we didn’t get paid. We learned later that the promoter was never arrested but used it as an excuse not to pay anybody.
What are your plans for 2017?
Well the record will be out soon, so the plan is to play as much as we can. This year we have done so far about 15 shows here, and we hope to have more and we plan to do some shows around Europe.
If you were second on a three-band bill, which band would you love to be supporting and which band would you choose to open for you? A chance to plug someone you’ve toured with, or a mate’s band we’ve not heard of before!
The opening band would be one of our friends, I would have to choose between four or five bands, while the Headliner for me (if I could have them together again) would be Circle Jerks.