With so many cool bands out there to check out I offer you some minor guidance by introducing you to SAINTS TRADE. Anders Ekdahl ©2019
We live in a world where there are literally millions of bands to check out. What do you have that sets you apart?
-We are a “genuine” band, in the sense that we try to put into our music what we like to listen and what we feel – while moving within a pattern dictated by the genre that we propose, therefore mixing power and melody in the way we like best.
It’s a bit like trying to reinterpret and customize a “classic” recipe to make its flavour recognizable: “here, that’s Saints Trade!” The sound, the vocals, the structure of the songs always try to have their trademark: there will be nothing incredibly original but at the same time it is personal.
How hard was it for you guys to pick a name? What had that name have to have to fit your music?
-The band’s first year of life has passed without having a name … we were a cover band like many others, and we were looking for something that was original but did not lead to any specific genre … then one day Joana (the drummer who played with us at the time) came to the rehearsal room with the idea of the monicker SAINTS TRADE, playing a bit also on the name of the singer (Santi – literally Saints) and everyone liked the idea. Over time we have also seen that it is a rather recognizable and original name and this seems to be a good point in our favour.
What band(s) was it that turned you on to the kind of music you play? What inspires you today?
-Our great luck is to always listen to music at 360 degrees, each of us obviously has his own preferences: for example Claus prefers bands like Metallica or In Flames, not even disdaining hard rock bands such as Guns N Roses – Andrea loves the most classic heavy metal like Iron Maiden but also has a visceral love for the blues or for Hard Rock bands such as Whitesnake or Thin Lizzy, not forgetting sacred monsters such as Toto or big names of Italian music. Santi also listens to a little bit of everything, from Elvis to Bruce Springsteen, from Creedence to Deep Purple, from the big AoR names to the greatest Hair Metal bands.
This variety of tastes has contributed to define the sound of the band – and we are very satisfied of the result!
What is the advantages/disadvantages of CD and vinyl these days of internet promotion where digital seems to be king?
-We think that there is no real advantage or disadvantage, it is mostly related to age and musical genre.
People of our age has grown up with the “collector syndrome”: we have our little rituals like going to the music shops and fairs looking for some hidden treasures (japan prints, first presses, rare bands from unknown countries…), we like to have a physical collection to have something to read, to touch while listening to the album.
It’s a bit nostalgic, but this is not the only reason – mp3 are surely an easier format to bring with you and share your music but it offers a totally different feeling and listening.
Moreover digital music suffers from the hardware performance whereas CD and above all vinyl quality is intrinsic.
In the end is also a matter of genre and tastes…
I use Spotify and Deezer but only as compliment to buying CDS (it’s easier to just have your phone or pad when your out) but I fear that soon music as we know it will be dead and buried. What are your worries as a band?
-As we said before we understand that young people are more keen to use digital platforms like the ones you mentioned, but we’re not that much worried about it.
Like many other bands nowadays we are also getting used to this new marketing opportunity, our music is also available in streaming sites.
What we are sorry about is that probably one day there will not be the possibility to listen to our records anymore, because of the lack of CDs…
By the way, we’re still selling them – also outside Italy….
What part does art work and lay out play? Any message that you want to bring forth with it?
-Artwork is surely very important because it visually attracts the buyer, sometimes even without listening to the content of the album! A good artwork is useful when it helps in distinguishing from the others, in fact what we are looking for in a cover is to catch the eye of the public in between the other CDs.
Anyway, we prefer that our covers do not leave a particular message or to be directly related to the content of the songs, but we’d like the public to interpret the artwork with its own imagination.
Time to be heroes is not a concept album but the cover made by Aeglos Art sums up the “fil rouge” that binds every song in it, whatever it is…
Is it a whole different way to promote a band today with all these social media channels? Or do you go about doing promotion the same way? Playing live and word of mouth.
-It is evident that nowadays social media are the best way to promote art, in particular music – indeed we recently opened an Instagram profile, while trying to upgrade our Facebook official page in order to reach as many fans as possible.
This will also allow them to stay in contact with us and buy our Cds and merch easily, but of course we like better meeting them after a gig, talk to them directly, having pictures with them.
After all we’ve always been a “live band” and nothing is more important for us than keep going on stage playing for our fans!
Do you feel like you are a part of a scene, locally, nationally and internationally?
-We are on the run since ten years, and gig after gig we became part of the local scene, so rich in rock and metal bands like Crying Steel and Danger Zone – to mention just two.
Now, with an EP and two full length we’re quite known in the Italian scene, and trying to jump forward to be renowned to a more international level: not easy but it’s worth trying.
How much of a touring band are you? Is touring/gigging still a great way of spreading the word of the band?
-As said before, we’ve always been a live band – we’re born with the purpose to play live as much as possible and we still believe that this is the best way to spread our word and to share our music.
What will the future bring?
-Nobody knows, nowadays… we were planning some gigs in our country and maybe even a tour abroad but we all know what’s happening so now we’re rethinking our live future, using these lockdown days to go on with the songwriting.
Maybe 2021 will bring a brand new Saints Trade album – who can tell?