Dad cat in a Bag concert was one of the best gigs of this year’s edition of Inne Brzmienia Festival in Lublin (Poland). So I was more than happy when I met those fantastic people in person and I couldn’t miss the opportunity to invite them for a short interview.
Wojciech Żurek: Yesterday you played fantastic concert on Inne Brzmienia festival in Lublin. I have to ask – How did you like it?
Luca Swanz Andriolo: Basically, I think it was one of the most important experiences in our music career. We are still astonished, since we could only dream over about such a big crowd and so magnificent organization for these kinds of music, that we can properly call „different sounds” – like the name of the venue. In my opinion this is very important to know that there is something like this event in the world. I can’t say I was surprised that Poland can offer something like that, because this is the second time we come here. First time we played on Jazz Ring Festival and it was great, so I think this is the best place for our music. I don’t want to say something against my Country, but basically the gap is really wide. We can’t even compare the reception of this kind of music and the way how it is treated in our Countries. Back home, we often notice that what is called indie music is in fact mainstream music but badly played. Here is independent music, with a mainstream-like crowd.
W.Ż.: What is your main inspiration when you start creating songs? What is your first thing? Feeling? Places?
L.A.: I suffer from depression. I’am laughing about that, now, but it’s true. I suffer from this state of mind and music is something like a kind of therapy. Basically at first it was my own problem with life, women, with what happened to me in every day life and about the way I can front and face everything. Like in our tradition – blues, country and folk music, even jazz with lyrics. But then came the idea to work in a band – as now we are the proper band. I’ve started as a solo artist with a friend. It was a duo with various collaborators. Some of the others are still with me. Now we can merge together our different views of music. Our different background. So now, even the lyrics are no longer related to my personal experiences. We try to put together everything we like as a journey all around the World. The inner world and the real world. That’s why we can play Tex-Meix, balcan, industrial, electronic, experimental folk, folk noir, dark americana. But even a proper country blues. Sometimes… even trip hop.
W.Ż.: Do you think there is something powerful in your use of acoustic instruments? It’s something amazing that you give huge power of music with acoustic instruments.
L.A.: Yes, it’s another kind of folk but we are not the first band to play this way – if you think about… Yes, we are even an electric band sometimes. On our last albums we choose not to use so much acoustic guitars (but banjo, dobro). So there is not a program. Sometimes we go electric, sometimes acoustic. We use to merge different sounds to deliver the idea. For us, folk music is a kind of world music. It’s some kind of avant-garde that you can reach looking back. I can’t say better.
W.Ż.: What is a difference between playing in Poland and Italy? Is there any?
Andrea Bertola: The main difference could be that in Italy the big part of the audience doesn’t understand words, because English language is not so easy for middle Italian audience. The first thing is understanding what we sing. The lyrics for us are pivotal point. The first difference is that many people don’t understand really our music, completely. What we feel literally when we listen the music is if music itself and the arrangement are good, if instruments are well played, if the quality is good enough. Here (in PL) we know that people of different age are very interested in what we play. They wanted to stay there to listen new things and feel an experience. I don’t know if all knows the lyrics but they feel the music. And then give a feedback. Totally honest. We saw the girl that cried for all the show. She listened the concert and cried. We don’t know why but she was happy to share this experience…
W.Ż.: Did you think about singing in Italian?
L.A.: Oh, no. It will never happen. We think Dead Cat In a Bag is a not part of Italian scene.
W.Ż.: What is your plan in future? When can we expect something new from you?
L.A.: We have an idea to work with different sounds for the next work, but we are just starting to think about it. Currently I am working on three albums as Swanz The Lonely Cat. The first will be released by a Swiss label in autumn. It will be drone music, minimalism, dark ambient, industrial and harsh noise music – It’s my musical version of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. I’m also working on an album with Stella Burns, for our collective called Love & Thunder. Then I am about to mix a solo album, called The River At Night. And then we are also working on something big – with big names like Calexico, Mick Harvey… But now I can’t say anything more.
W.Ż.:So fingers crossed. Thx for this interview. I hope you will come back to Poland soon.
L.A.: Thank You.
Lublin – Inne Brzmienia Festiwal 08.07.2023