Wednesday, May 22, 2019

interview: A Vintage Death

A Vintage Death is a solo project of atmospheric doom from Italy. Totally new to this publication, below is an introductory interview that should interest fans of one-person DIY atmospheric doom. The interview has details about the recording Acrid Death Fragrance and also about life in Italy for A Vintage Death. Hear the music for yourself at the link at the bottom of the interview.
Hello, can you please introduce your project A Vintage Death?
Hi everyone, my name is Carmine and I am the only and only member of the A Vintage Death project. For me it's my first solo experience, even though in the past I was part of several bands, so far, my most important project has been with Rising Moon, where however we were only two members to compose and take care of the band, so let's say I'm at ease. I have make all sound of guitars, bass, drums, keyboards and voices. I was born as a drummer, I always played drums in my old bands, so I didn't have any problems recording the real drum parts on the EP. I also personally take care of the recording, I am at my first experience, I do not have a professional instrumentation or a modern software, so the results are not of high quality, but for the genre proposed and for a first job I consider myself quite satisfied.
Carmine, is A Vintage Death your first band/project?
Absolutely no … I started playing drums since childhood, then the classic local school cover bands. Around the age of 15 I had my first real band "Condanna", from where I and the guitarist then founded "Body Grinder" and later changed our name to "Rising Moon". I've always played drums, but sometimes I wrote riffs, played keyboard parts, and enjoyed backing vocals. No, as a child I have never sung or taken singing lessons, guitar lessons etc., then my parents do not play any instruments, nor listen to much music, they are practically the anti-music ahahah!!!
Does the music on the recording sound like you originally imagined?
Absolutely no ... as I said before, the songs in the EP have undergone a long and laborious development over the years, made up of dead times and hard moments, so let's say that it was an evolutionary process that led the songs to change skin and mood over the years. I can safely tell you that the essential differences from how I developed the songs in the past and how I completed them now can be looked for in a greater melodic component that was missing before, the embryonic songs were much cruder and dirty, even the arrangement of every riffs is certainly much more sought after and outlined. I am happy with how the songs sound today and I believe that I will continue on this path, marking the Black, Doom and Death Metal components even more if possible.
Did you grow up in Italy, Carmine? What Italian heavy metal music did you like when you were a teenager?
Yes, I was born and raised in Italy, in a small town in Abruzzo. In adolescence, before discovering Heavy Metal, I mainly listened to Italian rock, then one day a friend of mine gave me a tape to listen to, it was "Slowy We Rot" by Obituary and from there it all changed. I'm not a real lover of Italian metal, we're known beyond borders for metal genres that I don't particularly like. I could tell you about many valid bands that I loved, but let's say that I really enjoyed the first albums by Sadist and Necromass.
What international metal bands did you like back then?
I grew up listening to American death metal, my favorite bands are Cannibal Corpse, Suffocation, Deicide and then I approach the Swedish death metal like At The Gates, Dissection, Hypocrisy above all. Lately I'm more in the Black Death Doom Metal genre, I still listen to all the old bands, but to be honest I don't really appreciate their latest works, except for the Hypocrisy!
Do you live now in the same area where you grew up? Are there metal music concerts where you live?
Yes, luckily for me I still live in the land where I grew up, I love my land and I feel good here. I live in a small town with my family, here I have everything, sea and mountain near me. For small concerts in my area I can't complain, in fact for some years now the situation has definitely improved, there are really delicious concerts and festivals.
Are you a big fan of football like many Italians?! Sometimes it looks like Italians have two religions: 1.Christianity (of course) and 2. football. That’s true in Spain and England, too, of course. Do you follow football news and events?
No, absolutely not ... I do not follow football, I rarely see any match (on TV) of the Italian national team, when at least it has got qualifiers tournaments hahaha !!! Anyway as a child I loved Juventus, so let's say Juventus is still in my heart, but nothing more ... if it wins or loses for me it makes no difference. Yes, in Italy football in particular is very popular, maybe I would say too much for my taste, lots of money goes around it and I don't like it. So let's say I'm not true Italian, because I'm not a Christian and I don't follow football hahaha !!!!
Sometimes, in the news, like recently, we see in the news that Italian football fans seem to hate African or Black football players in Italy because the Italian fans insult the Black players. As an Italian, how do you feel about this issue?
Yes, even if I don't particularly follow this sport, unfortunately the sports news more and more often reports episodes of racism in football, and I'll tell you that lately (also thanks to the government that we have now) even in the social chronicle the cases of racism have increased. Yes, as Italian the fact embarrasses me a lot and I think that in a developed and civilized country this is a serious flaw.
Please tells us more about Acrid Death Fragrance. When you began A Vintage Death, what type of music did you want to make? How old are the songs? Is this all new music?
A Vintage Death is a project that I have been carrying with me for several years and that due to lack of time and important family commitments I have never been able to realize it, then everything went well in the last year, where I gathered all the ideas accumulated over the years and I poured them into "Acrid Death Fragrance".
Are all the songs about death? Have you experienced the death of a friend or family recently?
Natural death has always attracted me since I was a child, from the stories of my grandparents to the hypothetical life after death, to nocturnal walks in cemeteries, everything for me has always been a great source of inspiration. I am 40 years old and currently I have not had so many deaths in my life, but some of them have marked me very emotionally, to one of them in particular I have dedicated "Acrid Death Fragrance".
Does the thought of death worry you (and the people that you leave behind)?
Death is a natural event, sooner or later it comes just a matter of time. I often think of my own death, in my head I imagine so many possible scenarios, but in reality I hope for a natural death and without suffering, perhaps at a considerable age. I have a wife and a small child, so if death must come I hope this happens as late as possible, maybe when my daughter is old enough to understand how life works.
What do you believe will happen you die? Do you believe in Jesus Christ and the Bible or do you believe that it is mythology? What are your reasons for accepting God or for rejecting God?
No, I'm not a Christian, I consider myself an absolute atheist. My idea after death is simple and concise, that is nothing ... like before being born, nothingness, even after death, nothingness. Many people believe in the afterlife, of a new life, maybe meeting new loved ones in earthly life, it would be really nice and the very idea fascinates me a lot, I really hope so, also for me. I do not believe in god, but I do not reject him either, I strongly respect those who think differently from me, every person has reasons to live and live. I categorically reject fanaticism, be it religious, cultural or ideological.
On the recording Acrid Death Fragrance what equipment do you prefer?
I am not a guitarist, so I am not so knowledgeable on the subject, I don't have a favorite brand, I simply use the one with a sound more suited to my music. For the EP recordings I tuned my guitar 2 tones and a half below and for the distorted sound I used the classic Metal Zone pedal, nothing simpler.
When you think about the sound quality of Acrid Death Fragrance, are you pleased and satisfied with the sound of the drums? What about with the vocal styles? If you make future recordings, what elements of the recording process do you think that you would like to improve?
Surely there is to be improved, on all aspects ... When I started recording the EP I didn't know where I would end up, what kind of sound I would get, everything was born by itself, slowly, day after day. I really like drum sounds, it's really raw and essential, I think it fits well with all the other instruments. The growls vocals are the most criticized part of the whole job, I have never used this type of singing in my life, except sporadically in some past work and I think I absolutely have to improve them. However, as a first job I feel quite satisfied with the overall result.
What would you like U.S. fans to know about A Vintage Death?
I would like to invite your readers to listen to the project at least once, it's a first job where I tried to devote myself to 100%, it certainly has a lot of flaws and it doesn't sound very professional like recording or anything, but I think it's a great base, on leather work and do better. I'm working on future songs and I don't have a precise direction, but everything I create are the result of my feelings and moods transformed into notes.

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