DESPERATION BLVD

This is a band well worth checking out if you you like sleaze. Interview answers by Elvis “Hell” Ortolan- Drums, Anders Ekdahl ©2020

Was it hard to come up with a name? What does the name mean to you? How important is it to have the right name?
-Not really, we had some idea about it, first of all an album of The Sweet, called Desolation Boulevard.The name must be a “business card”, to describe your style and it must be catchy. In our case, Desperation BLVD is an ironic description of society around us, and our relationship with music business

Who would say have laid the foundation for the kind of sound you have? Who are your heroes musically and what have they meant to you personally and to the sound of your band?
-We grew up in late 80’s and early 90’s, listening the great bands still on shape, with no particular preferences , from Iron Maiden to Metallica, From Queensryche to Motley Crue etc. We still love that period, because there were a lot of inspiration, creativity and this is our way to write music.

When you play slow do you have to think differently arranging the music than if you play faster and vice versa?
-Of course, we try to catch the mood of a song and try to play in a way the song need, especially about drum grooves and guitar solos.

Will your music work in a live environment? What kind of stage environment would best suit your music; a big stage or a small club?
-Yea, our music is conceived tone play live. We play pure rock’nroll, with no samples and live backing vocals. We love to write rock anthems, trying to find the best melodies possible. You know, in the 80’s rock was great, and played for big audiences, but now, everything is resized. Anyway, we are happy to play if anyone wants to listen us.

It is very hard to be 100% satisfied. Everybody seems to be disappointed with something they have released. Is there something that you in hindsight would have done differently on this your latest recording?
-It would be strange if it wasn’t. The test of time, works for every musician, it’s a standard process to improve . In our case, we’re pretty satisfied, maybe, we would have liked to have more time to work on additional arrangements.

Promotion can be a bitch. Even today with all different platforms it can be hard to reach out to all those that might be
interested in your music? What alleys have you used to get people familiarized with your band?>
-It’s a bit strange if you think about it. Nowadays, we have a lot of platforms, ad agencies, social networks, and , if you have money to burn, you can do your promotion by yourself, reaching whoever all over the world. The problem ,for me, is the less interest of people and the over number of bands around. There are a lot of laziness, little passion,everything seems to be so dispersive.

To me art work can be the difference between bust or success. What to you is a great front cover? What should a cover have to make it great?
-A great artwork make the difference when it comes to Heavy Metal , it was for me too, when I was younger ,discovering a lo of bands being fascinated by their artworks. Front cover could be your first contact with a band, for this reason it must be catchy and arouse interest and emotions, describing your music style and your “intentions”…

Do you feel that you are part of a national scene? Is a local/national scene important for the development of new bands?
-Not really, we are a young project, even if, with our previous bands we know a lot of musicians and bands in our country. Of course, a national scene would be important for development of bands, but here in Italy there’s never been unity, like other countries as Germany or Sweden.

I could just be me but I got the feeling that the live scene is not what it used to be. Could be that more and more people use the net to discover bands instead of going out and supporting new bands live. What is you experience with the live scene?
-Yes, you have right on this point. We are in music business since 20 years,and there was a big change on the audience, unfortunately in a wrong way. As I told you before, everything is so dispersive, there are at least for or five events every night, cover bands,tribute bands everywhere… If you aren’t a big name, it’s difficult to create interest. There’s no more will to go out and discover some band, enjoy a show whoever plays. All this, we suffered in our own flesh.

What does the future hold?
-Well, you know, at the moment we can’t play live due to COVID 19, so, we?ll try to spend this time writing new music for next album, in the meantime, we are very busy with promotion of the band and new album

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