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Topic ClosedInterview with Pennelli di Vermeer June 2008

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Angelo View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Interview with Pennelli di Vermeer June 2008
    Posted: June 14 2008 at 12:01
Last year, Pennelli di Vermeer were introduced to ProgArchives. Their music is an interesting, progressive if you will, mixture of styles - combined with sarcastic and humoristic lyrics. With their  second official release - a full album this time - being released on June 20th, it seemed appropriate to led the band shed a bit of light on themselves by means of an (e-mail interview).



PA: Pennelli di Vermeer is a band that has a quite unique sound. Could you tell us how you got the idea to create this sound?
PdV: Each member of the band has his own musical background: blues, folk, popular, grunge, rock… various experiences fused in the project Pennelli di Vermeer

PA: Our site members are not all Italian speakers (after all, it's the _World Wide_ web). Could you explain us briefly what the 5 tracks on Tramedannata are about? This would make clear what the line "the lyrics are often conceived as visionary ‘micro-suites’, featuring satirical and metaphysical elements" means.
PdV: We were due to come out with an EP with 5 songs. We’ve chosen 5 songs that could summarize at best our project of merging different musical ideas: ska, rock, folk and Arabic music.. all in 25 minutes. The adjectives such as goliardic, metaphysical, etc.. have been written by several writers in turn. We’ve come to like them and have used them in our biographies.

PA: "Processo immaginario…ad un nevrotico dissociato ma non del tutto" was your debut, and if I'm correct it contained the same tracks as "Tramedannata". If that assumption is correct - why was the name of the record changed?
PdV: Well…. In truth our first self-production dates back to 2003 and it’s called “Mod. Barocco, Fragile, Maneggiare con cura, Grazie!”
The second self-production came out in 2005 and is called “Processo immaginario...ad un nevrotico dissociato ma non del tutto”.
They are two simple demos but many people have liked them and think they are real productions as is they were full length albums…. They can also be found on the net where music is shared.
Our first offixal EP came out in 2007 an is called "Tramedannata", it has 3 tracks from the second demo and one track from the first demo. There is one extra track which is a De Andrè ( famous italian songwriter) cover “Princesa”.

PA: A question that always comes up when talking to new bands: are the band members full time musicians, or aspiring to become full time musicians?
PdV: When you seriously think of being it, on eis already a full time musician.

PA: On a completely different topic: you biography mentions your love for 17th century painters. What made you choose specifically Jan Vermeer when looking for a band name? (I'm interested, and not only because he's from my country)
PdV:Pasquale Sorrentino (voice and acoustic guitar) cae up with it as he is knew Vermeer and flamish painting current too.
We liked the name thus we adopted it. That’s all. We are fascinated by the dualism that has characterized Vermeer’s life: a great artist, a mediocre man.

PA: There's a lot of progressive rock bands coming at us from Italy these days. Is there a real prog scene going on there?
PdV: No! Prog music remains an elitarian musical phenomenon.. besides prog, the one “pure and nostalgic” does not interest us. Our points of reference nowadays are others. If, by prog, you mean “progression” towards all genres then we feel that the word prog is the right one for us… but if this term has to mean long solos, uneven tempos, stories of fairies and elfs then we don’t feel prog to be our genre. Our new album is an evident example.

PA: In relation to the above - how is Pennelli di Vermeer being received outside your native country? You get international attention through sites like ProgArchives and MySpace, but does that really show in record sales, or feedback you get from listeners?
PdV: The reviews have been always positive… the selling of records have been little. It is strange though because there are lots of international sites that have reviewed our records. We take the opportunity to thank you guys of the ProgArchives…. that are giving us the possibility of being known abroad.
We hope to come and play some dates over there.

PA:. Your influences are quite broad, and at some point, one of our members called your music 'prog ska', after listening to a sample of "Sulla mia scrivania". Is ska really something that influenced your music?
PdV: Well, we like it but we don’t think we will ever do a full length ska album. There’s some of it on the new album on a track called "Manifesto cm 70x100". We have also shot a video of it. Ska is fun, it makes you dance.

(The following two questions are credited to fellow PA collaborator memowakeman)
PA: Nowadays, I believe the role of the internet in the musical scene is very important, a high percentage of new bands have openened sites that use to share some of its songs, for instance the myspace site which everyday is spreading more and more, what do you think about the importance of the internet in a world where things are done 50% legal and 50% illegal?
PdV: It’s an important instrument that has changed out way of relating our knowing.
The use people do of it – in good and evil – it’s something which has to do with the conscience of each and everyone. Surely it has destabilized music industry… but it deserves it… cds nowadays are too expensive. This explains why we are inviting people to buy our cd on-line on our label’s website www.lacanzonetta.it... It costs only 11.90 including shipping charges.

PA: A simple question, you are a great and original band, what should we expect about your forthcoming album?
PdV: To play live as much as possibile – hopefully over there too – and to earn a bit of money.

The questions below were asked in a second batch of questions, after receiving the answers above, and after I received a working copy of the new album.

PA: After hearing some tracks from your new album (thanks for the opportunity to pre-listen), I can say that the music made me happy from the first note. What I'm wondering is whether that was the intention - a track title like "Tre cadaveri nel cassetto" (Three corpses in the drawer) doesn't look that humourous. Could you elaborate a bit on what the message of the tracks on the new album is?
PdV: There is almost always the irony in our songs…really we are five persons with a high sense of humour also in the daily life. We like the idea to tell, in our songs, little “interior drama” in an ironic way…and if from the drama it born a smile, so….mission accomplished!

PA: You mention that - in relation to progression - you are more interested in mixing styles than long solo's and tales about fairies and elves. A fair statement, that makes itself heard on the album. Are there any bands or artists in particular that influenced you for the tracks on the new album? Reason I ask is that the main rhythm riff of L'Urlo vaguely reminds me of a Paolo Conté track I heard years ago, while the beginning of S.K.L.ero reminds me of Magma...
PdV: The approaching to other artists is inevitable…and it may happen that something in a music remember vaguely another one….especially when we “play” with all the music.
In this year, in which we have worked for the album, we have listened so many different artists…also the electronic music, and it’s possible to listen it in the album: we like “S.K.L.ero” because is a mixture of prog and electronic music…the same for “Incuboinuncubo”.
We listen a lot of music…unconsciously we are influenced…but we don’t have some artist to say.

PA: Who is E. Munch? A less relevant question perhaps, but the title of L'urlo - a E. Munch makes me wonder...
PdV: Edvard Munch (norwegian) is one of the most important expressionist painters, lived between the 19 and 20 century. His most important painting is “L’urlo” (“The scream”). That dramatic and visionary painting have inspired us. In the first verse, we have used his words released to an art historian to explain the born of that painting.

PA
: To cap off this interview - I have a question inspired by the huge list of guest musicians on your new album. Which (Italian) artists would you recommend to ProgArchives members - give that our site covers everything from pre-classic prog to modern progressive metal?
PdV: Area, Premiata Forneria Marconi, Banco del Mutuo Soccorso, Le Orme, Biglietto dall’inferno, Osanna, Fabrizio De Andrè, Giorgio Gaber, Elio e le Storie Tese



Edited by Angelo - June 14 2008 at 12:04
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2008 at 00:51
Bravo Angelo!!!!!!!!!!!

Nice work my friend.  I've not heard this band (yet!) but enjoyed the interview all the same.  ClapClap
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2008 at 04:42
SmileThumbs%20UpClap
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Angelo View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2008 at 08:34
Thanks guys - now start listening to Pennelli and enjoy Wink
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2008 at 23:01

Thanks Angelo, it was a great reading and thanks for the opportunity!

Congratulations!

Follow me on twitter @memowakeman
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