With one of the best cold wave/synth albums of 2017, Selfishadows (Daniele Giustra), out on the always reliable Unknown Pleasures Records, a recent, awesome premiere on Last Day Deaf, and merely a few days before sharing the stage with well-respected genre acts like Drab Majesty & ROME, we didn’t resist in having a brief chat with him. And there it is!
Hi Daniele! Welcome to Last Day Deaf. Going back around 11 years, when your debut ‘EP‘ was released. How did Selfishadows project emerge? Any previous experience?
Yes, before Selfishadows I had many experiences with different projects: Kannonau, The Well Of Sadness, Fjelds (here I was playing drums). For Selfishadows it was difficult to emerge, the first EP came out in 2007, it was recorded with old synths and it was floating between kraut pop and wave. First album ‘Step On‘ came out after 6 years, in 2013, with Factum Est/Jestrai Records, it’s minimal music, bare and cold, totally recorded in analog using an old Crumar Multiman-S and a vintage drum machine Yamaha RX 11. After three years ‘Nothing‘ came out through Bunkier Productions. It’s a very warm and intimate album, that was recorded in analog too. The breakthru came in 2017 with ‘Recalling‘, that came out via Unknown Pleasures Records and appointed by many people as the best cold synth/coldwave album of 2017.
Your latest offering ‘Recalling‘ (Unknown Pleasures Records, 2017) was one of 2017’s outstanding cold synth releases. Are you satisfied by the album’s reception so far? Which was the main inspiration behind this?
‘Recalling‘ for me has been the mature album, where I’ve been successful to mix the coldness of ‘Step On‘ with the warmness of ‘Nothing‘, I’m very satisfied! The main inspiration, as for all my albums, is the real life, my anxieties, my fears, the ghosts that live inside me…
You “…cleverly mash brand new and vintage synthesizers..”! How did you end up with this ‘clever’ combination? Please discuss…
I appreciate very much the warmness of analog sound but I also like to experience new sounds, this gradually helps to create my sound, made by vintage synths and drum machines but also by brand new synths just like Microkorg.
‘Dry Your Eyes’ is a very cool track with a great video filmed in B&W. Would you like to talk about this video then?
‘Dry Your Eyes‘ video was filmed in the dead of night, in one session only, it’s a very simple video but in my opinion it’s perfect for the track.
Which 3 movies, 3 books & 3 albums would you say are the most important for Selfishadows’ art? In other words, impelled you write music?
It’s difficult to find three subjects for all these categories, but I think that the main book it’s “Krautrocksampler“, by Julian Cope, the main movie can be “The Holy Mountain“, by Alejandro Jodorowsky and about the albums I’d say: ‘Faith‘ by The Cure, ‘Closer‘ by Joy Division, ‘Elephant Shoe‘ by Arab Strap and also ‘Desire‘ by Tuxedomoon.
Which other Italian cold synth bands/acts are notable for you and we should pay attention to?
Weimar Gesang, Neon, Ash Code, Central Unit, Die Form, Victrola, 2+2=5 and many others…
On 23rd & 24th February you are going to share the stage with two well-respected genre projects, Drab Majesty & ROME accordingly. How do you feel about these ones then?
I’m so excited and happy, ‘The Demonstration‘ by Drab Majesty has been one of my favorite albums of 2017! I hope everything will go well…
Which are Selfishadows’ plans?
I’m already working on a new album and in these days we are filming the video of ‘Inside My Own‘.
Finishing with this one. What does cold synth mean for you. How would you describe it?
Coldness and warmness, minimalism, the stillness as a movement expression.
Last words belong to you then. Feel free to add anything you like!
Nothing, we are nothing…
Photo credits: Valentina Battiato (1st one), Loredana Guinicelli (2nd one)