«I’ve been lost twice
now I’m sitting around just with myself
I’ve been locked inside myself
Like an island with myself»
(Coda) is the third single out from ‘Life Happened’ by True Sleeper, the solo project of Marco Barzetti, formerly leader of Weird. – one of the most successful Italian shoegaze bands – and guitarist/lyricist for the international psych maven Sonic Jesus.
Born as a simple interlude, it soon stand out as a full completed piece, the song is one of the most moving and strong episodes of the new album: the scenery suddenly opens up on a soft explosion of keyboards and guitars, from whom multi-melodies emerge as the real cornerstones of the whole musical writing. It is short, appealing and captivating, with an attitude that clearly moves away from the sonic shoegaze atmospheres of the first two singles. It really gets you carried away in another time and space, an sort of dream-like tense psychedelic level.
‘I’ve been lost twice’ is a clear declaration of intent, a double loss of time and in time, that the main character suffers while reflecting on the past and present events of his own existence. There’s a light haze where everything gets hidden and idealized, as long as even the closest people you know become unconquerable cities that will never be faced: once again all is lost inside the maze.
In contrast with the main lyrical themes, (Coda) is quite a revelation: a well focused track, totally genuine and akin to an elegant, sophisitcated psych/dream-pop which still does not turn his nose up to a rather more rough and distorted approach.
Italian cult noise pop band Cosmetic is back with a sparkling new album called ‘Plastergaze’!
Another introspective journey along the shores of shoegaze, a genre that marked the band since the debut EP ‘Sursum Corda‘ and the resounding success of ‘Conquiste‘: here we find once again new eleven gems set between indie rock, dream pop and emo-core.
Bart and his partners create a further chapter in their history, confirming they are among the few in Italy who know how to merge a distinguishable international sound, made up of guitars and distortions, with the rather unusual Italian language.
It’s not a simple work, but a complex and stratified album, perhaps the most reverberated they ever did. The spacey synths compete with the striking glares of the guitars, while the way more broaden atmospheres get enriched by Alice’s vocal harmonies and the huge contributions of Straccia on the keyboards, making the overall writing more dreamy and fluctuating.
The sharp, somber lyrics don’t accept any fake respectability in a time when simple generalizations and stereotypes easily go for the win. Is there still any place out there for the inept ones in the world? For those who can’t identify themselves inside this huge tide of uselessness and fiction, for those who falter, for those who are unsatisfied with what’s around them, but keep on moving forward, falling and getting up again, while entangled in an inner reality of their own, once again victims of themselves.
How can we accept ourselves and the otherness of who’s next to us? Which are the physical boundaries this society imposes to the fulfillment of the individual?
The band has self-produced the record in its own studio, built during the last five years, and was helped on the mixing by Steve Scanu – who’s already worked with Be Forest, Lantern, Urals – and Filippo Strang on the mastering.
Design by Alessandro Cavallini, all artworks are by Zannunzio who also realized the abstract/oscillotronic lyric videos for the first singles out of the album.
Heavy Life is the second single out from ‘Life Happened’ by True Sleeper, the solo project of Marco Barzetti, formerly leader of Weird. – one of the most successful Italian shoegaze bands – and guitarist/lyricist for the international psych maven Sonic Jesus.
In the middle of a cold winter, two lone children climb a parallel path, wandering through the snowscapes apparently looking for something. Is it a flashback or just another fantasy? Or is it real?
True Sleeper tailors an enthralling round dance of verse and chorus, a neat remodeling of the usual rock ballad, this time revisited in his own style. The dreamy guitars are still there, making way for a martial, almost primitive drumming and a pulsating, vibrant bass, while a softer touch is delivered by the mellowness of both the Solina synth and the original 60s Farfisa organ.
It is a romantic song indeed, yet shaded by an inner angst impossible to solve: a sense of existential heaviness inherited from the past, still haunting the present events.
«There is a strong desire to let the old ghosts go, but the narrator is still imprisoned by his own expectations, fears and nightmares. ‘Very soon I’ll walk alone’ as the first line says, mirrored by the kids in the video who approach the climbing on their own: it’s a longing for being independent and grown-up beyond all the adversities a frosty mountain can put you through and they seem ready to achieve a full growth despite their young age, though I sing ‘I’m still late, heavy life’. The storyline goes on, finally showing the two getting closer and meeting almost at the top, sharing a similar view (unknown to our eyes) through the binoculars and, once again, I sing that ‘I want to be in your eyes, to see your grace’. It’s all about waiting for a revelation from the outside when actually you should find it within yourself, with the blunt pureness of a child who doesn’t waste his time overthinking or procrastinating.»
A captivating moving tune, Heavy Life will definitely catch the ears of those who love slow-core/dream-pop sounds with an added powerful shoegaze spark: it’s outstanding music that can be hardly labelled, confirming how unique True Sleeper is.
Life Happened is the debut album by True Sleeper, the solo project of Marco Barzetti, former leader of Weird. – one of the most successful shoegaze bands in Italy – as well as lyricist/guitarist for Sonic Jesus, guru of the international psych scene.
The long journey done with the previous bands has been marked by an incessant musical exploration that brought him first on shoegaze/dream pop territories, then to slightly more psychedelic and noiser peaks – as well as playing live in events such as the Eindhoven Fuzz Club Fest and several European Psych Festivals (Rome, Barcelona, Bordeaux).
Now, Marco turns page once again with a record who witnesses his personal growth, the result of a fractious soul, indeed, but
also free from any restraint or label. Besides, who ever in Italy, in 2019, would have the guts to write, play and produce a whole circular, pauseless album? A rich work based on sound connections, leitmotivs and melodic resurgences, also full of reverberations and distortions, among
which every instrument – voice included – emerges distinctly like the tops of a choral cathedral of sound.
The opening ‘Blurred Hearts’ introduces an immediate sonic and majestic guitar-driven atmosphere, only softened by the dreamy singing: is this post-rock? Psych-pop? Or as if Mogwai joined the Flaming Lips? The leading single ‘Heavy Life’ concedes a subdued and distant sing-along voice, in assonance with the official video shot by Futura Tittaferrante, a writing whose path itself is uphill, cold and snowy. The music goes on towards more acid and distorted episodes, like the almost screamed ‘Lost In Time’ or the melancholic ‘Lunacy’, while alternating with delicate breaches and
dilatations such as ‘(Coda)’ and ‘Yourizon’, where the narration becomes more and more hypnotic and rarefied.
Life Happened is the founding stone of a new identity, a musical continuum that tells the story of an inner journey hinged upon an endless experimentation. But that’s just what happens when you stop a barely half existence, to start living.
1. Blurred Hearts
2. Heavy Life
3. Lost In Time
5. L Is On C
6. Naked Start
‘Life Happened’ is available on black/pink/teal vinyl, CD & MP3 via Bandcamp.
Free streaming on all the digital platforms.
C18 • Pure Italian Gems is the sophomore mix-tape realized by Lady Sometimes Records to promote the contemporary Italian indie scene. Clearly inspired by the NME C86 tape, it gathers different experiences yet showing a common attitude.
Where has our desire for freedom gone? Why do we constantly subdue our creative energy to market, trends and standardisation? Can we really act as independent minds today? Is it right or is it wrong to ask such questions within an underground music selection? The making of this tape has pushed me to raise several issues, a bit beyond the usual ‘Oh I really dig this bands’ thing.
Actually in the past two years I felt more than ever that a large part of our best local acts is still ignored by the press, the clubs and – last not least – the listeners! We trust more the Spotify algorhythm than a flesh and bone reviewer, a friend or a neighbor band. I see people getting more and more uninterested by other people, scared to discover new stuff and places, lazy and bothered when it comes to invest their time on a ‘yet not so hype’ cultural experience.
You can buy this playlist at the same price of a beer, but you’re more than welcome to download it for free, enjoy your time listening, spread YOUR OWN word, be ACTIVE and SUPPORT your local scene. Get in touch with us and tell us what you think about it, as you may know – coyness is nice, and coyness can stop you from saying all the things in life you’d like to.
C18 features a handmade fanzine focused on the 15 bands involved in the project, available only on paper along with the tape.
1. Sweat • Feel It Coming
2. The Chilly Willies • My Last Chance
3. Naughty Betsy • Gerald Spencer
4. La Naissance • Knee High Socks
5. Frown • Morrissey
6. Quaint Ash • For You
7. Urali • Dwellers
8. The Whip Hand • Your Thoughts
9. MasciaTi • Come Il Vento
1. True Sleeper • Blurred Hearts
2. Halfalib • Liebe Fénix, II Instant
3. Ma Femme Est Morte • With You I Experienced The Incapability of Not Being Able to Talk at All
4. Sonic Jesus • Cartaxo
5. Ramplingg • The Mist Is on The Marshes
6. Stille Dämmerung • World in Pieces
Thanks to Gusville Dischi, MiaCameretta Records, VDSS Recording Studio, WWNBB Records, Tiny Speaker, To Lose La Track, General Soreness, Fatty Liver Records, Malestro and all the bands featured who agreed to be part of C18.
This tape is dedicated to you, with love ♥