Interview: Lorenzo Montanà

       1. There’s an easily recognizable style in your music, your tracks are full of motion and rhythms that result in a fascinating combination of Ambient and IDM. How did you manage to achieve such a deep and atmospheric sound? What difficulties arose when you began making music?

In my music I tend to reconstruct very precise images of natural environments. For me is exactly how to draw by taking the colors and creating forms. I don't follow a logic linked to the patterns or musical structures, I just follow the instinct and let myself be guided by imagination as a writer does with a novel. Both the ambient and IDM are basically abstract sounds, I don't have a particular style, I can develop my tracks with ethnic sounds influences, or classical music, up to noise and ambient sounds, so I can expand in all areas. The only obstacle that sometimes I have to face up with is not being able to translate into music what I have in mind, because maybe I lose too much time to find the right sound or groove and creative instinct is lost.

2. Could you tell us about your studio? Do you have favorite instruments or synths? What do you use to record your music? Does your setup have something truly unique or special?

Actually my setup in the studio  is pretty simple, I have an electric piano that I use as controller for any virtual instruments. My platform is Cubase 8.5 which I've worked for years. Lately I enjoy to play also with Moog Sub37 specially about the bassline creation. Sometimes I use some ethnic Instruments like Hang Drum or a flute which sounds not far from Duduk which is Armenian instrument. I also records in some other studios where I work as producer for artists so I have sèveral places where I can play around.


3. How important is for you, as a musician, the location of your studio? Where would it be more interesting to record your music, in a city or in the countryside?
Definitely out of the city for me is a way better. My studio which is also my home is located just 10 minutes from the city center but its atmosphere really still feel like in the countryside. From my window I see fields and hills, there is nothing better for me to breath freedom. Years ago when I started working I created a small studio in the basement of my grandmother's house  which was also my rehearsal room for the band that I had in the 90's. I spent hours with an 8-track analog recorder all day to experiment without seeing the daylight, but time has changed and I have to say that it's so much better now.

        4. Your music definitely has psychedelic roots, but at the same time it’s very profound and naturally beautiful. It seems, your primary goal here is to change the audience’s perception, alter their state of mind. Is that truly so? What would you like to draw the audience’s attention to? Or maybe give them a hint that brings them closer to something?

Yes, there is a psychedelic side very close to nature as a form of life. I like to tie the sensitivity of these issues with the human side to disconnect the thoughts of every day’s life and bring us back to a more primitive state. 

The expansion of consciousness comes from curiosity in order to  expand your mind for a new way to seeing things. When you're child everything seems bigger and more mysterious, we make fewer questions but with more fantasize, we don’t have the answers, and this leads makes us run through the corridors of the imagination, is something that over time you lose, but I hold very in this aspect.

        5. Tell us, what is your stance on altering one’s state of consciousness and being open-minded? Are you a supporter of the psychedelic culture, or do you think it’s a false path to development and true development occurs in a different way?

Each person is free to do as they wish to enrich themselves.  I personally prefer to play with reality, choosing to be consciously or unconsciously is dictated by myself, I think the reality in within which our brain works  is the deepest form of personally research, because you have a lot more to fight t o reach the summit and feel free.

6.  People often ask you questions about Pete Namlook and your collaboration with him. We want to talk about him with you only a little bit. To what degree did his personality inspire you and what was that impressed you in him and his music? 

I listened to Peter's music in the 90’s in the late night radio show called the Labyrinth. I used to listen it with my headphones before sleeping and I spent hours imagining these electronic worlds and how it  was created. I've always discovered it very eclectic and experimental in all his works.  I succeed to meet him and started to work on some records together that was something special for me that I will never forget. I remember him in the studio during a jam session and he took the guitar to start improvising jazz up on my groove, I was literally amazed. He was a great artist who i will always carry in my heart.

7. Tell us, what amazing things have you seen in his studio? What are the surroundings and the inside atmosphere like? How did it make you feel, what impression did it make on you?

The first time I was there I immediately got a good feeling. It was a house in the woods, an old hotel which has turned to be home and studio, upstairs the ceiling was full of windows and you could enjoy the scenery that was really amazing. There were a lot of synths and indescribable collections of instruments also movies and sci-fi books. After a cup of coffee we were getting immediately very well, he was curious and enthusiastic about my musical approach and more and more astonished at the creativity from both that went out together. Every time we took a break and went for a walk through the forest, then i understood that there were things that are very similar in our musically inspiration.

        8. Do you often perform in your home town? Do you have more live-concerts in Italy or outside of it?

Not very often in my city, I did a show at the RoBOt Festival which is the most important electronic event in my town, I have more chances to play in contexts suitable to my music outside of Italy.


        9.  Are you interested in the art of the Italian Futurists, European Dadaists and Surrealists? What is the most interesting thing for you in the world of art?

I love the art and surrealist movements like Dadaism and Futurism. I studied art in school and have always found art very inspiring artistic language that go through poetry to cinema, Artists like Max Ernst, Giorgio De Chirico and Salvador Dali have definitely influenced my background, what I've always tried in my trial is the transcription into a musical form.

       10. What is your opinion on Luigi Rusollo and the Italian Noise scene? Are you interested in it?

Somehow he was the first pioneer about noise and abstractionism in 
the form of music. He played through his machines that generate sounds seemingly discordant, at a conceptual level is certainly close, but in the perceptual result very different from what I do.

        11.  Could you tell us more about Disco Dada Records label? As far as we know, you started it with a group of like-minded people. What inspired you to do it?

My job for over 15 years is a producer for many artists and bands who is looking for a personal sound and I can work on their own individuality. I created Disco Dada Records with my friend Gianluca Lopresti and when we find interesting bands we work with them, mostly they are bands who sing in Italian. It is not a genre label, not experimental at all, we do what we believe is the right path for the band and we don't follow any musical scene.

       12.  What kind of music does the label release? Could you recommend us some artists from Disco Dada Records? Which release should we start from if we want to get more acquainted with the label?

Surely there are interesting artists like Simona Gretchen who writes surreal lyrics about Italian culture on a background of folk noise music, or artists like Delenda Noia who retraces the italo disco of the 80's in a darkwave sound, you can still find the release on spotify by the way.

        13.  In your opinion, is your music targeted at a broad or specific audience?

My music is definitely not for the general public, I prefer people who are curious to expand their vision and musical research associated with its visionary side, in short, my audience is a natural selection.
       14. Out of all the releases you’ve recorded, which one is your “business card”?

I don't  think there is a reference album, I try to make a personal path and draw my feelings so it is very depending on personal taste, maybe my new album Phase IX contains a bit the feeling that at the moment I want to convey.

15. Could you tell us about your new album? What is its name and theme? When is it going to come out?

My new album is Phase IX, it's release on Projekta label which I already worked with for an other album with Alio DIe called Holographic Codex

There is not a specific message, it's just my personal trip divided in nine different phases of a visionary world about forest, mystery and ancient ruins, I would like to describe the feeling to be far from the world and finding something deep about our loneliness. Its more about a solitary walk through forgotten path that represent our ancient spirits and the connection to the most wild nature side. 
The album is gonna be release on March 2017 in 300 limited copies. Actually already available the order on Projekt website.

     Questions: Krib / Ilya Kudrin