ACT NOIR : interview with Sergio Calzoni
by Salvo "Lovedeath" Russo ___
organized by Act Noir, My Kingdom Music and Salvo Russo
DANISH REALITY METABOLIZED BY MY BODY
Hi!!! Can you explain the
story of this band to our readers?
music- voyage of Act Noir started in 1998, from the ashes of my previous electro-symphonic-bombastic
project Alma Mater. At that time I wanted to experiment music soundscapes
with the help of real musicians, and not only using samplers, keyboards
and other electronic equipment… So I found in Stefano Nieri (guitar),
Michele Gozzi (bass) and Claudio Pilati (drums) the perfect chemistry to
make music together. In 2001 I moved in Copenhagen where I lived for three
years, and then I was lucky enough to meet Nicholas Hill, whose
outstanding vocal contributions have been recorded for our debut CD.
main idea behind Act Noir is to express our creativity without any sort of
boundaries or limitations. We all came from totally different music
experiences, and I think our sound deeply reflects such diversity.
This debut album show us not only a great sound but also good creativity …can you tell me how
the songs born?
of the songs has its own story… Some of them born in our rehearsal room
in Italy jamming together, some other have been composed during my
“Danish exile” in the weird “container-studio-house” where I used
to live. Generally speaking I consider “Automatisme Psychique” some
sort of a diary of my life in Denmark: almost all the production/mixing
and the lyrics of the CD have been made in Copenhagen. My experiences and
my interpretation of the Danish reality have been metabolized by my body,
processed by my brain and then poured out into music.
I notice a great production and very good arrangements; Can you
tell me the main secrets to obtain a so great sound?
glad you found the production and the overall quality of the CD at a high
level. I think what really helped us to improve our sound was the
home-recording studio I set up, investing all my monetary funds! In the
past years we used to record and produce our tracks in professional
recording studios, but I always found these places enormously stressful
and we were never satisfied of the end result... Our music requires lot of
studio work in order to experiment the best direction a song should take,
and professional studios have always tight schedules with very expensive
hourly wages. Fortunately at the end of the 90’s hard-disk recording
became a more and more affordable option to produce music, allowing to
record music just using a PC with an audio card. Our sound has been
totally sculpted by means of this digital technology, and we’re proud of
There’s an important musical search into all compositions…Dark
meets new wave and there’s also a touch of gothic and
electro-dark…What are your favourite bands?
Far too many…!! Anyway these are probably the most significant bands/musicians who inspired our music style: Dead Can Dance, Pink Floyd, David Sylvian, King Crimson, Depeche Mode, Peter Gabriel, Massive Attack, A Perfect Circle, Einstürzende Neubauten, Erik Satie, Mozart, Brian Eno, Nine Inch Nails, Porcupine Tree, The Gathering, Recoil, The Doors, Miles Davis.
Why the idea to record two remix as bonus-tracks?
With Unheimlich – mesmerizemix – we wanted to push the song to its extreme dance/EBM boundaries, giving the chance to Act Noir fans to enjoy our music on a more physical level in clubs and “alternative dancefloors”. By the way, I’ve always been in love with (intelligent) techno music...
other bonus track is a song composed by the Italian cult band MonumentuM.
Roberto Mammarella (MonumentuM’s mastermind) asked me if I wanted to
remix this track for a CD-compilation, then we all liked so much the final
result that we decided to add it on the track-list of “Automatisme
The lyrics….How much important are the words in your songs? Which
is your favourite one?
consider the lyrics an essential part of our songs, I love the fact they
are so hermetic and abstract... My favourite lyric is “Absence Of
Charisma”, a portrait of the modern human being who values just the
materialistic side of life, up to the point there’s no more
“charisma” and spirituality in himself. There’s so much shallowness
everywhere on this planet, people are confused and they miss a spiritual
model to follow, God became “rusted by the
efficiency” of their extreme rationality.
Your debut album is great, but are you already working for the next
We have some songs at a pre-production stage, but it’s still too early to know what direction our future album will take… Our intention is to keep a more minimalist approach in our new tracks, expanding the atmosphere and the mood of each tune.
now I’m quite busy to finish the production/mixing work of the
forthcoming album of the Italian band Colloquio, that will be issued in
September by Eibon Records (Canaan’s record label).
What can you tell me about MY KINGDOM? How did you get in touch
Francesco Palumbo (My Kingdom Music’s mastermind) is an old friend of us: years ago one of our tracks was included in a CD compilation for his magazine “Vampiria”. We then re-established the contacts in November 2005, when we signed the record deal for the release of “Automatisme Psychique”.
enter in My Kingdom Music’s roster we had two misadventures with some
other record labels, who wanted to release “Automatisme Psychique”…
Francesco Palumbo, instead, proved to be a serious label’s manager since
day one of our contract, and we have to thank him for his commitment and
trust in our songs.
Tell me something about live-performances….Is it very difficult
to play this kind of music on stage….
The main issue is not the difficulty to play live our music, the problem is to find venues or booking agencies interested to have Act Noir on stage! We sent several promo CDs in order to find gigs, but no one actually replied to us… I think they are terrorized by how strange and hard to categorize our music is, so as to find the proper audience for a live performance. If you know anyone who might be interested to experience Act Noir live… well, you know how to get in touch with us ;-)
The final question is the Game of the Tower…You’re on a high tower, and with you there are 3 bands…you have to push down two of them, saving the third one…
For you there are: DEPECHE MODE, THE CURE,
Eheh!! Is the Depeche Mode line-up with or without Mr. Alan Wilder? If it’s the new line-up (...so without Alan) we’ll push down from the tower THE CURE and DEPECHE MODE and save MASSIVE ATTACK... If instead was the old Depeche line-up (...with Mr. Wilder) we would have probably saved them, and pushed down the other two bands!
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