One very interesting band by that inspired Italian (Catania) late generation, Clustersun, are here on Last Day Deaf! Having recently released their second ‘Surfacing To Breathe’ LP, touring and getting media’s attention, the band seems to be on their take-off runway. We had a very interesting chat with them, about the band, their universe and psychedelia. Those of you who are keen on shoegaze, psych and tripped a lot with the early “megatone” bands, Clustersun will excite your neuron, groove you wildly and put you in that usual laid-back, philosophical discussion about rockin’ psychedelia “man, is it Lucy in the sky, is it Barrett’s Floyd, maybe Ride on chrome waves..?… Could also easily be the newcomers Clustersun on the Event Horizon”. Good times, good music, enjoy the non-chary Clustersun!
Hello Clustersun, welcome to Last Day Deaf! You have recently released your second LP ‘Surfacing To Breathe’; Which are the differences from the first ‘Out Of Your Ego’ in 2014?
Hi Mike, thanks a lot for having us on Last Day Deaf! We’re definitely so happy and proud of how the new album came out. We feel it’s a huge step forward compared to the debut, more solid and in your face. We tried to raise the sonic bar delivering a more complex and layered mixture of shoegazey reverberations, massive walls of sound and psychedelic soundscapes. There’s a cosmic/space-y dark vibe that surrounds all 8 songs, matched with a dreamlike sense of melancholy and emotional fragility coming from the lyrics. The great goal for us was having Alessio Pindinelli (also guitar and vocals in La Casa Al Mare) and Fabio Galeone mixing ‘Surfacing To Breathe’ at Wax Recording Studio in Rome: their work in giving shape to our sonic ideas was simply outstanding (Alessio also co-produced the album with us). Also, the recording sessions were directed by our synth man Piergiorgio Campione at his own Studio12 in Catania (that is the place where we rehearse) so we had a total control over the tracks and great room for experimentation, without the pressure of time. Finally, the mastering provided by Carl Saff in Chicago was just the icing on the cake: he pushed the album with a super loud, full and deep sound. Another blessing was the collaboration with Ilaria Facci, internationally acclaimed Italian photographer based in London, that curated the album’s artwork.
The first single ‘Raw Nerve’ already made a very good impact on the alternative/underground fans and the dedicated media, so what’s the new Clustersun “proposal” to the music fans?
We were totally overwhelmed by the feedback coming after the release of the first single ‘Raw Nerve’ and its trippy videoclip by Samir Kharrat and Adriano Spadaro of Visualazer (almost 40.000 views on YouTube in a couple of months). This song is truly a manifesto of our sound and attitude: a mix of shoegaze, psych, postpunk, space-rock and dreampop, delivered at super loud volumes. All the tracks on this new album came out in a very spontaneous way and also in quite a short time, rehearsing between one gig and another, and that explains their more “on steroid” feel.
Shoegaze, psychedelia, sometimes on a straight post-punk plain, are only few terms to decode your art, but how would you describe Clustersun’s music?
We love to say that we try to make music that just takes the listener in an otherworldly dimension, creating a space-time suspension.
Tell us a few words about your artistic influences…
All of us grew up listening to The Beatles, Pink Floyd and The Velvet Underground. Then we fell in love with bands like Slowdive, My Bloody Valentine, Ride, The Jesus And Mary Chain, Swervedriver, Chapterhouse, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Spiritualized, Echo & The Bunnymen, Joy Division, New Order, The Cure, Spacemen 3, The Depreciation Guild, Neu!, Can… We could go on for years naming artists that influenced us!
Clustersun, as a name, is a psychedelic illustration, same as some of your songs’ titles ‘Lonely Moon’, ‘The Whirling Dervish’, ‘Event Horizon’ (is it that spaceship?). Tell us about the band’s “literature” please, where all that psychedelia is emerging from?
Glad you noticed that! We love to surround ourselves with psychedelic, spacey, cosmic references, because we feel they are a perfect match with the atmosphere of our music. Psychedelic bands and sci-fi literature classics like Isaac Asimov, Philip K. Dick are key influences for us and always come to mind when we have to choose a title or creating a narrative context. About ‘Event Horizon’ we have to say that the title came out after reading something regarding black holes and only after the song was completed someone told us that there was a film with the same title: very cool to know and a coherent coincidence anyway!
You are currently on a mini-tour, are you going to extend it, are we seeing you in summer festivals?
We’ll definitely keep on playing to support the album with gigs in Italy and Europe, and we hope to make some festivals too. Also we should come back to play in the US in spring 2018.
Earlier in February you released a cover for ‘Morningrise’ by Slowdive, how come and chose that song; Should we expect more like that in time?
We were so honored to be involved by Renato Malizia of legendary The Blog That Celebrates Itself in this tribute compilation to one of the bands that we love most. ‘Morningrise’ was an easy choice for us, because we covered it sometimes at rehearsals and it’s so much fun to play! Filippo Strang did an outstanding job mixing and mastering the track at VDSS Recording Studio and we really love how it came out. It was not the first experience of this kind for us, because we also contributed to the Echo & The Bunnymen tribute, out via The Blog That Celebrates Itself too in 2016: we definitely enjoy being involved in these projects and surely there will be something more of that kind in the future.
…And which band would you like to cover one of your songs?
It would be so cool and interesting being covered by A Place To Bury Strangers. We love them and think their furious approach applied to our stuff could result in a total blast!
Future plans? Any new material kept in the drawer waiting to be released?
Apart from supporting the new album with the tour there will be a couple more singles with videoclips to be released before the end of the year. We are also starting to write new material, and we yet have almost 40-50 song drafts archived form the past months jams: lots of things to work on for sure!
Can you give us some recent releases that you are really keen on?
Easy to say that we listened a lot to the new albums by Slowdive and The Jesus & Mary Chain, and can’t wait for the new Ride and Cigarettes After Sex’s LPs coming in the next weeks. Also we’d love to mention a few great recent releases from Italian great bands: Electric Floor’s EP ‘Fader’, The Gluts’ LP ‘Estasi’ out a few months ago, and also Stella Diana’s LP ‘Nitocris’, Rev Rev Rev’s LP ‘Des Fleurs Magiques Bourdonnaient’, Novanta’s LP ‘Hello, We’re Not Enemies’, My Invisible Friend’s s/t EP, all out in 2016.
Thank you for your time Clustersun, you may add anything you like!
Thank you so much Mike and much love from all of us to Last Day Deaf.
We’d love to remind that our new album ‘Surfacing To Breathe’ is out via Seahorse Recordings and is available on vinyl/cd/digital through our Βandcamp website and also on Amazon, Spotifiy, iTunes, Apple Music, Deezer, Google Play. Keep following us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, BandCamp & SoundCloud.