We live in a world where there are literally millions of bands to check out. What do you have that sets you apart?
-Hi guys! Aaron’s speaking. We know we are just a drop in the ocean, but we are sure we have something to say, in our way. Also, we don’t follow a trend or a scene, but we’re trying to do music that we would like to listen. But we’re not closed in ourselves, we like this “ocean” of bands, and we’re listening all the stuff available from around the world!
How hard was it for you guys to pick a name? What had that name have to have to fit your music?
-It was very simple, because the band name and the music came together as a whole thing, when Gianni and Sergio decided to set up a band in the first place. The name lead to the music and viceversa.
What band(s) was it that turned you on to the kind of music you play? What inspires you today?
-We’re still inspired by the bands we listened when we started all: Pantera, Tool, Alice in Chains and Faith No More are the bands every one of us like, plus other bands that defined our personal musical path. For me as a singer, I’ve been inspired by other metal scenes, like power thrash metal bands: Rage, Iced Earth, Grave Digger, Blind Guardian for example. Sergio and Paolo loves Dillinger Escape Plan, Gianni is more in punk rock hardcore stuff and Maurizio started its love for the music listening Dream Theather.
What is the advantages/disadvantages of CD and vinyl these days of internet promotion where digital seems to be king?
-It strongly depends by what kind of band you are. If you are able to connect your fans by keeping you underground and sincere in certain genres, you’re be able to be very important to few people instead to be mildly interesting to a wider audience and that’s a good thing. In this case you use the digital distribution in terms of direct funding like bandcamp or patreon and that’s the only way if you are on you own. I repeat that, it’s a good thing. You have to be loyal to yourself, to your music, and your fans. On the other hand, to be appreciated by millions of people you have to be very special and very well promoted and it’s not so simple to find someone who wanna invest on you.
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?
-It is clear that industry is moving to mass digital distribution, and that’s a thing you can’t change. Has its good points, we’re producing less plastic as a part of the process of dematerialization. But it’s not the death of music, nor vinyl (it’s pretty resurrected!) or cds. They become more precious to the fans because they and the band put the value in it. I personally can’t miss a physical release of “my” Blind Guardian as a fan, but thanks to digital distribution I can reach so many other band that I couldn’t never be able to afford. You don’t have to lose interest in a media in particular, you can use both.
What part does artwork and layout play? Any message that you want to bring forth with it?
-The artwork is a main part of the concept for this record. It’s the start of the journey, with an androginous figure with the tarot card “The Pope” in hand that means the losing of loyality and respect to the others. On the other pages, we see a barren land with distorted figure of other cards, the next steps of that journey.
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’s not so different, because it’s the media that is changed. But a band have to responsable for its communication. As a musician you have to understand that been in a band it’s not just playng an instrument. You have to believe in your project and spread the word, with every tool you have. Before socials was as you said, word of mouth, but also text messages and flyers on the wall. You have to stay committed, now like yesterday.
Do you feel like you are a part of a scene, locally, nationally and internationally?
-Yeah, The Blacktones are a part of a scene, located in Sardinia, Italy, and even it’s not perfect, it’s still a great scene! We’re personally proud to know and see prosper some great bands that born from our cities. Some of them are known worldwide and we are very happy for them!
How much of a touring band are you? Is touring/gigging still a great way of spreading the word of the band?
-Not as we really want! Touring and play concert is really important to us, it’s the only way to a band to stay alive and wealthy!
What will the future bring?
-The promotion of “The Day We Shut Down The Sun” is still up and going, we’ll publish some official videos this year and we’re planning a tour outside sardinia. See you soon!