Photo credit: Francesco Boni
After releasing The Long Procession - an album that combined chaotic hardcore riffs with post-metal soundscapes – in 2010, Italy’s Amia Venera Landscape seemingly disappeared. A couple of years later they announced on Facebook that they had written about 80 new songs and then things went quiet again. Since then a single new song, “Weight Bearer”, has surfaced along with some vague plans regarding the band’s future. What we have below is an interview with guitarist/vocalist Alessandro Brun about the past, present and future of the band as well as their extensive catalog of new songs.
Jón: First of all, welcome back, you’ve been away for almost four years haven’t you? Would you like to discuss what caused this?
Alessandro: After The Long Procession release in 2010, we made a Russian/Eastern Europe tour and several shows in Italy for more than a year, then we decided to lock ourselves up in our own rehearsal room to compose new music. We focused our strength on building up the conditions that would have allowed us to work on the upcoming music in total freedom and independence. We enlarged our rehearsal room and transformed it into a studio. This new space, together with not playing live, has helped us focus on the new material. In the meantime we had also some problems, one of us has suffered a serious tendon disorder, that caused a break in the scheduled activities.
When you released “Weight Bearer” you said you have chosen and arranged songs for your next four albums, over how long a time period do you expect to release them? Isn’t there a risk involved that new music you write becomes old to you while waiting for the “old music” to become new to the fans?
Our purpose is to release the new albums as soon as we can. I think it would depend also on how much time we’ll spend on playing live between each album, by the way, we’d like to release them along three/four years. Along this period we’ll probably compose some new music, so I think there will be a constant renewal despite most of the music has already been written…
Are the four albums similar in style to each other? How about in contrast with The Long Procession?
The albums will be significantly different one another. Probably there will be something that could remind of TLP in every one of them, more in one and less in another, but they will follow every one its own direction.
How has the reaction to “Weight Bearer” been overall?
The reaction to the new song has been pretty good, most of the comments seemed positive about the changes between it and The Long Procession. I think this song could be somehow considered like a bridge between our previous work and our upcoming one.
Recording 4 albums must be quite expensive; have you thought about crowd funding (Indiegogo, Kickstarter, Pledgemusic) or are you working with a label?
Before releasing The Long Procession, we haven’t had a very good experience in studio. Enrico (guitar/piano) preferred to mix and produce the album himself, spending a lot of time learning how to get the result we wanted to obtain. This is one of the reasons why we decided to keep on working on our own, without any external figures involved. Therefore we also decided to extend this experience to all our upcoming works.
Crowdfunding is a good instrument for an independent band, but I think there’s been a kind of abuse of campaigns…some of them were really embarrassing…
I think we’ll launch a classic preorder…
Are there plans of touring or do you just want to get the music out there as soon as possible?
We’d like to tour after every album we release. Our purpose is to play in countries and places we’ve never been before. We’re open to consider every offer, even if sometimes it’s quite hard to manage a good tour considering we carry with us our own audio and light production…
Considering some of the conditions and situations you were in since The Long Procession came out did everything that happened cause you to approach writing the new albums differently?
No, honestly I think there haven’t been any substantial differences…
Speaking of The Long Procession, that album felt, to me, like a blend of early Isis, maybe Botch or early Dillinger Escape Plan and then a flavor of its own. Is that a set of influences that resonate with you or would you name something completely different?
I think only Isis could be defined as an influence…we were more into bands like Shora and Kayo Dot… Lately there are some bands we really enjoyed, such as Khanate and Guapo.
Would you say the influences changed greatly during the last 4 years?
Yeah, I think so… I mean, time passes and you always look for something different and more stimulating…
How do you feel like the metal and -core scene is in Italy now compared to when you guys were starting out? Any exciting upcoming bands you’d like to mention?
A bit of a random question but I’ve noticed what is probably a completely coincidental thing. A lot of Italian metal bands seem to choose strange three word names these days: Amia Venera Landscape, Nero Di Marte, Noise Trail Immersion, Damned Spring Fragrantia. Is this something you’re aware of or am I just seeing patterns where there aren’t any?
No, I don’t think there’s any particular reason…When we chose this name, something like eight years ago, most of the bands had a single word name…I really wouldn’t know…
Lastly, if there is anything you’d like to say to your fans or any info you need to get out there you’re free to use this space:
We wanted to say thanks to everyone who keeps on sharing our videos and supporting our music…we’re not promoted by big distributions or managements, so our chance to spread our music and even to tour in new countries is strictly related to how much people share our music and keep on supporting us…so, we wanted them to know how important it is for us.
Thanks a lot for the interview and good luck.
If you want to follow what’s happening with the band and their four upcoming albums, the first of which - Vision I: The Great Mystery - comes out in 2015, you can like them on Facebook - and we’ll try to keep you up to date as well.