Italians via London, it’s your latest BotD fix…
We are all originally from Italy but have been in London for such a long time that we can easily state we come from here.
How did you meet?
Me (David) and Val formed the band in 2008, while still living in Italy. Andrea (drummer) joined us three years ago. A friend of ours introduced him to us when the band turned from a semi-acoustic trio into a full four-piece band. Julius was the last entry (only few months ago) and came to replace our previous bassist.
How long have you been playing as a band?
As I said earlier, this formation is only few months old but the band itself was formed in 2008. Me and Val have been playing and writing together since 2000…as soon as we put our hands on that wooden thing people call guitar.
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?
It comes from a song we released in 2008. The song was all about the evanescence of all the ideals, religions and hopes a man can imagine or embrace. The “Desert” represents life and “Clouds” all the things listed above. Things that you can imagine, chase and, sometimes, transform into life meanings…but in the end they are just clouds, often real only in your imagination.
What are your influences?
We all have different music backgrounds. Me and Val are more into music like Pink Floyd, Doors, Velvet Underground, Sonic Youth, Joy Division, Dirty Three, Nirvana, Radiohead. Andrea is closer to the hard rock/metal scene like Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden blinking to contemporary psychedelia such as Pineapple Thief. Julius, instead, comes from a metal background. He really likes progressive metal artists such as Opeth, perhaps his favourite band.
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
It’s probably the mix between all these influences which makes our sound unique. On top of that we are all convinced that free expression makes everything more real and natural. Our sound has a specific touch, but it can slightly change during our live performances as we like improvising and following the momentary mood of each of us.
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
Often our lyrics tend to represent an uncommon perspective on life, in its essence. They often merge existentialism with ordinary, everyday human emotions such as frustration, hope and interior state of decay. We don’t really touch political or social subjects and, unintentionally, always find ourselves writing on things that we consider beyond those. In our lyrics, you can often find metaphors that try to describe emotions through cosmic events or introspective analysis and abstract feelings.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
As mentioned above, our shows are a mix of improvisation and songs, a mix of sadness and rage, they require a lot of attention to be enjoyed and whoever does, usually finds himself tripping with us. That’s what we do, we don’t perform our songs and that’s it, we try to trip around and meet strangers to take on board…even if only for a bit. Whenever possible, we like to project videos and images on stage during our gigs and, often, we give our backs to the crowd and enjoy the show with them. Since 2014 we have been playing more than 100 shows, but just a few of them were pleasant to us.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
Recently I’ve been to a Nick Cave concert. During the show he jumped off the stage and walked among the crowd, pushing everyone away like he wanted to fight with everybody. He also passed a few centimetres from me and from his face I was really expecting to receive a punch…he just pushed us and kept walking deeper and deeper into the crowd. That might not sound very wild, but you did not see his face.
We don’t really do that, we prefer to remain where we are. Also, because we don’t have wireless jacks and microphones!
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
I personally play a customised Fender Jaguar HH, Val a Yamaha AES 800b and Julius a Warwick bass that he has recently bought…a true beast! Our drummer plays on kits he finds in venues, but he has recorded our last singles on an amazing Ludwig drumkit from the ‘60s.
What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?
Our latest single “Speed of Light” came out last September and we are still riding its wave. Meanwhile, we signed with SaN PR Agency for releasing its video and the following album Nothing Beyond the Cage.
What are your plans for 2018?
As I said, we will release a video for “Speed of Light” later this year followed by the release of the album Nothing Beyond the Cage in January next year. After that, we will be touring the UK to promote it. In the meantime, we have many shows in and around London. Here are some:
- 1st Nov – The Cave – Addlestone
- 3rd Nov – Black in White, Hackney Wick
- 14th Nov – The Horn, Bishop’s Stortford
- 22nd Nov – The Dublin Castle, Camden
- 6th Dec – Hope & Anchor, Islington
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!
I would really love to support a more established band like Dirty Three…but this is just a dream. So, beside them, I don’t really know. But we are trying to take on board for our UK tour a band called Elbrano and you should check them out!