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Posts Tagged ‘radiohead

Smashing Pumpkins – If All Goes Wrong DVD

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Billy Corgan, front man of Chicago behemoth Smashing Pumpkins, is one of the most consistently frustrating musicians of the last thirty years. He is at once the most grandiose and pompous example of stadium orientated rock that Generation X ever produced, counter to every sanctified decree from the house of Cobain, and yet he is the champion of fan taping, he has distributed demos, exclusive recordings and entire concerts through a carefully selected network of fans and friends, distributing for free music that some of his more ‘noble’ peers have charged hundreds and hundreds of dollars for. This is the man who issued the ultimate punk rock ‘fuck you’ to Virgin records self releasing his final double album as fan distributed free releases long before NIN and Radiohead jumped on the headlines.


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Planet Brain – Full Interview

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A version of this interview appears on Subba Cultcha.

You may not have heard of Planet Brain yet, 3 quiet Italian school friends who have been slowly honing their craft for the last decade, but once you have been exposed to their elegiac, transcendent rock music you will be hard pressed not to separate your life into two distinct categories: pre and post Planet Brain. The culmination of years of writing, refining and aural exploration their 2007 debut album ‘Compromises & Carnivals’ was an explosion of styles, a calling card album that contained a mesmeric set of songs that offer up a foundation that could easily be as important as Radiohead’s ’Pablo Honey’ or Muse’s ‘Showbiz’.  Fusing together the psychedelic tinged guitars of Swervedriver and ‘Gish’ era Smashing Pumpkins to the caustic bombast of latter day Muse they created an album seared with a heartfelt vitality rarely captured on record. In singer Marcello Batelli they are blessed with one of the most emotive voices in music today, though his operatics never overshadow the music, with rhythm section  Nicola Zagrando and Claudio Larese Casanova (yes really) provide a muscle that propels Planet Brains music deep within any listeners conscious. Following the UK release of ‘Compromises & Carnivals’ on Function Records the band have toured their homeland as well as making frequent exploratory trips to the UK. Currently completing recording on their follow up EP which sees the band pushing their sound to a darker, heavier soundscape they will be embarking on an Italian tour in November and returning to the Uk in the winter. I recently managed to grab some time with Marcello in order to discuss the bands back story, writing process and where they are heading.

Ok to kick off for those who don’t know can you introduce yourselves and give a brief history of the band. How you formed, what you wanted to get out of the band when you started?

We formed back in 1999, when we were about 15. Nicola and I used to play already together since we were at secondary school, we recorded some stupid songs about our teachers on a demo tape. Then we met Claudio and settled in his house, still our current homestudio-rehearsal room. Our first line up showed Claudio on the keyboards (he’s the drummer now), me (Marcello) on the drums (afterwards moved to guitar and vocals), Nicola on the guitar (then forced to be a bass player). We just started the band to entertain ourselves, without a real project. We soon began to write our own songs (‘Walkie-Talkie’ is one of the first songs we wrote), and we recorded a first demo-album in 2001 called ‘Bottom of the Seas’, followed by the ‘Orange’ EP in 2002, recorded by winning a local contest. We got another “ghost album” recorded in 2004 which was never been released, but some of the songs that were on it had been included in ‘Compromises and Carnivals’ (2007), our debut album.


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