RITI OCCULTI made me think of Swedish Borås Energi or Canadian Overbass simply because of their rather off-beat music. That alone made me interested in finding out more about the band. Interview answered by NICCOLÓ TRICARICO & SERENA MASTRACCO. Anders Ekdahl ©2012
How much of a musical vision did you have when the band formed in 2011?
Niccolò : The band first took shape as a duo bass/drums and its name was No Name Maddox , the primary mark was more oriented towards a classic stoner/doom sound with strong psychedelic influences. Later on, with the two singers Serena and Elisabetta joining the band and the inclusion of synthesizers, the sound of Riti Occulti started developing into what later became our first record.
What are your position on the play between music and lyrics? Can you write the most beautiful music and not have lyrics that match it?
Niccolò : Our music always come from a well defined concept, so the lyrics become complementary to the music itself. Sometimes it can happen not to be able to express lyrically what you want to communicate with the music, IMPO in these cases it should be better keeping the track instrumental, rather than choosing words at random.
What kind of lyrical topics do you touch upon? How hard is it to write lyrics to match the music or the other way round?
Niccolò : Our lyrics deal with esoteric themes only. In order to deal with this subject in an original way we use allegories and metaphors, else we do it through the Myths storytelling, and this allowed us to create the concept of the first album: the history of a modern man that descends into the abyss, through the nihilistic annihilation of himself and forced self-destruction, in order to be born again into a new spiritual being, following the point of view of the Left Hand Path. If you have a clear head about what you want to express with music and lyrics, and you let those two elements influence each other, it’s not difficult to be consistent.
How organic are you in your sound? What kind of sound is it that we hear when new listen to your music?
Niccolò : For sure our sound feels the effects of various influences, such as Doom, Stoner, Black Metal and 70’s Psych-Prog, all genres we love and that are part of our musical background. To those who listen to our music for the first time, I simply recommend to enjoy it, to have a trip on it and catch those messages and atmospheres we hope to communicate when we write a song, not worrying too much about what genre it is, clearly it is not a Reggae album, you can feel easy about that!
When I listen to your music I can’t seem to hear a guitar. What is up with that?
Niccolò : You can’t seem to hear a guitar because there isn’t a guitar. Our line-up in made up only of bass, drums, synths and two vocals, as you know. That one some people mistook for a guitar is a fuzzy and effected bass.
Is there an upside to being different? Do you get more exposure if you stand out from all the other bands?
Niccolò : Of course having an innovative and personal sound can help to stand out in a musical scene full of bands cloning other bands. But this not always helps getting more exposure because not everyone is open to experimentations and musical contaminations. IMPO I prefer writing original music and trying to always renew myself musically.
How important is the graphic side to the band? Do you spend a lot of thought about how you present the band?
Serena: Music suggests sensations that take shape in a set of forms and colours in the mind of the listener. The graphic of an album should act as an introduction, as if it was a cover of a book.
When you release records on a label what is it that you look for? What do you expect to get out from it?
Serena: We do not expect anything but cooperation and mutual respect for the work of both.
What kind of live scene are you a part of? How many opportunities are there to play live?
Serena: We are part of many genres and no one in particular… there have been several live offers, some of them were acceptable, others less… We’ll see what’s next in the future.
What would you like the future to hold for Riti Occulti?
Niccolò : Actually we just ended up shooting the official video of Alcyone, directed by Alessandro Pontillo, and we’re working on our new album. Hence I hope for the future more and more people can appreciate our music and this let them following our next productions.