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Posted: January 26 2012 at 10:43
OMBRALUCE is a Turin-based outfit that evolved from Italian covers band BISHOPS in 2004. The group's six members come from a variety of musical backgrounds that includes rock, blues, prog, jazz and funk, but these differences seem to have fostered unity within the band and their music is a modern-sounding fusion of these genres. They have a good live activity under their collective belt but the past year has been devoted to the completion of their debut album ''Distanze Ravvicinate'', which is available to buy as an MP3 download.
I got in touch with the band and here is their answers.
Your biography has been covered in your ProgArchives profile so let's bypass the biography details. But which bands were you influenced by and why did you choose that name ?
We have been influenced by and constantly draw inspiration from many bands. Such richness of ideas comes from the fact that each member of Ombraluce has his own musical background. We range over a great variety of genres from rock, prog and new age to psychedelia, jazz and funk.
Some of the most representative musicians for us are Yes, Area, Frank Zappa, Pink Floyds, Mike Oldfield, Dave Matthews, Quintorigo, Spoke's Beard, Chic, Genesis but the list is still incomplete.
Our purpose is not to became a clone of other bands but to create something very personal and with a hint of fresh novelty.
Starting from such different musical backgrounds we can not avoid in our compositions flashes of differet colours which wink at each other and alternate. Our challenge is to succeed, somehow, in combining all these different nuances to get an harmonious blend.
The name “Ombraluce” which literally means “Shadowlight”, comes from our natural inclination to prefer contrasting things and reveal that we have developped a taste for matching the opposites and finding the way the let them coexist.
We try to give depth to the sound image, like it happens in painting and photography with chiaroscuro technique, standing on the boundary line that separate shadow from light and investigating both hemispheres.
Italy has a rich musical tradition with PFM, Area, Osanna and many other bands. Where does your band fit into this scene ?
The bands you refer to date back to the golden age of Italian prog.
Unfortunately young generations find it hard to take off because the Italian musical scene doesn't make room for this genre.
Our underground music is rich and interesting, but often we lack promotion and distribution.
Thanks to the Net things are changing and we hope that thanks to it there will be an increase in visibility even if internet sometimes seems a little bit disorganized.
We give credit to famous Italian bands of the past for demostrating the skills of Italian rock music.
Although honestly we never thought to compare us to those giants of the Italian prog, that have been absolutely unique, surely there is one thing that unites us: we both consider music as an instrument of personal sound investigation: we compose and perforrm for the sake of doing it without thinking of pleasing necessarily the listeners.
Your debut album Distanze Ravvicinate was released earlier this year. Please tell us more about this album.
This album is the arrival point of a work that we began years ago.
During the years our band has undergone through modifications and significant changes in order to balance a great range of eclecticism and heterogeneity of musicians and compositions.
When our current drummer Carmelo Contino arrived we started a serious arrangement of the compositions we had been producing so far and ended with 14 compositions ready to be recorded.
We then decided to self-finance and produce on our own. On the one hand this slowed down the timescale but on the other hand it worked in our favour because it gave us extra time.
In fact it is not easy for six people to come to an agreement and this is the reason we produced so many masters in post-production. Each of them was carefully listened and used as a base for the next version.
Takes and mix took place in a recording studio, but mainly the job was done at home: for example the guide tracks before the takes as well as the interludes, post-production and mastering.
On the whole we believe we have done a good job: we wanted to do something new, interesting and original and in a way we succeded.
As it often happens in other fields the production of a work it's only the excuse, nothing compared to the discoveries, experimentations and the results achieved on the way to conclude the record.
That is the most important part: through that journey we have grown individually and as a band. We have also gained experience even if it has nothing to do with the final result.
For those of us unfamiliar with your music; how would you describe your music ?
The power of our music comes from an overall view.
It's like an impressionist painting that can not be properly appreciated if you stand too close to it but when you step backwards enough the whole set of points and lines, which appeared so confused and meaningless, reveals that details are made subservient to the complete picture.
Everyone draws a point or a line that, thanks to the cohesion between us, becomes our work where each of us leave his own mark.
Compositions are produced in disparate ways; some while kidding around in reharsals, some are the fruits of our labour and others are a mix of them.
Anyway the final result derives from hard labour because while composing and rehearsing we cut, stick together the whole material and smooth the way for the final harmonious draft.
Virtuosity and extreme attention to technical details are on behalf of the atmosphere of the piece of music.
Our project wants to express itself through a collection of colours and and atmospheres which seem distant but in the end merge perfectly.
With this CD we try to arise emotions in the listener, trying to recreate the same feelings felt by the author during the composition, though filtered by the individual life experience of the audience.
This is our ambition and to fulfil it will be the best way to accomplish our objective!
What have you been up to since the recording of this album, what is your current status and what is your plans for next year ?
During the last years our live concert perfomances took on mainly in clubs spread throughout the north of Italy as well as in social events, exhibtions and competitions.
We also have been in touch with a local radio station, “Radio Torino Popolare” and with “Radio RAI” which is our National Italian Radio.
Then we gave up any other activities while composing and recording “Distanze Ravvicinate” in order to concentrate properly and work hard to get exactly what we were looking for.
Now that our CD is ready we are working hard to advertise it on the Net and we have planned concerts to promote it.
In the meantime we are working on new ideas which are almost ready and we hope we wil be able to release this year an EP.
This EP will contain new songs that are more mature and we hope will be more stimulating. These new songs are promising!
To wrap up this interview, is there anything you want to add to this interview ?
Yes, we would like to take the opportunity to say a few words about the lyrics of “Distanza Ravvicinate”.
We believe that sound and lyrics have both a key role in music. This doesn't mean that they should necessarily be present together in every song but just that each of them should be exactly where it can make a significant contribution.
Very often, despite the fact that “popular”music is conveyed throught the form of a song, it is clearly ricognizable how much words are subservient to the music or even exist with the unique purpose of satisfying the conventional definition of “song”, even if there isn't something relevant to say.
But if sometimes words are heavy chains, other times it is the music itself which threatens to divert attention from the message we want to convey.
Our philosophy is that lyrics plus music, instrumental music, or only lyrics are three valid artistic expressions.
Each of them has its own nature: we use lyrics if we have something to say, music to convey deeper, less “cerebral” emotions.
They will be both present when they are both essential to one another.
They communicate at different levels, they go in from different doors and leave different marks.
Everything is subservient to listening: there is music in words, there is a dialogue in music. No default rule, as it always should be.
Thank you to Ombraluce for this interview
Edited by toroddfuglesteg - January 26 2012 at 10:49
Joined: February 03 2007
Location: 1950s Suburbia
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|Post Options Quote Reply Posted: January 27 2012 at 21:23|
Cool band! Thanks for the interview guys
“Even in art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply tell the truth you will become original without ever having noticed it”
―CS Lewis, Mere Christianity
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