Interview with ‘S91’


Italian christian progressive metal band S91  recently (July 2011) released a new album, titled Volontà Legata. Lets have a chat with some band members:

TMR: Hello to you from ´The Metal Resource’ Holland, how are things going there in Italy?

Jack: Hi TMR! I’m Giacomo Manfredi (Jack) the bass player. Things in Italy are not going very well, we’re in economic recession and we’ve got a bad governance, we only hope that this crisis will bring new opportunity.
: It’s difficoult express themselves musically in italy, our music style is underground, however we have a small group of fans who support us

TMR: Will you Introduce yourself and the band please?

Jack: Maria Londino, Sefora Bonaccorsi and Tania Petrone are the singers. Francesco Romeggini (franz) plays electric and acoustic guitars and in this album he sings in one song. Francesco Londino (Frank) plays electric keyboards (usually Korg). I play electric bass.
: I’m the keyboard player, I play piano since I was 12 years old, after I started to play in some bands and continued to study piano and keyboard, the music I listened and played (rock, prog and metal) was my inspiration to became a musician.

TMR: Can you tell us something about the origin of ‘S91’ please?

Jack: S91 was born in a cold rearshal room at Montecarlo (Lucca’s country) form the meeting of me and Alessandro Baggiani (an ex band’s guitar player). It was the 2006’s February.

TMR: Are you guys full time musicians? If not what kind of job or school do you do beside the band?

Jack: We aren’t full time musicians. Sefora is a physiotherapist, Tania works in a fast-food, I’m a computer programmer, Frank studies architecture, Maria attends a school of painting at “Accademia Delle Belle Arti” in Florence, and Franz studies “Arts Music and Show” at the University of Florence.
: i spent a lot of my time in the music, it’s an important passion for me, but I’m not a full time musician, I spent most time in my profession, I’m an architect. This profession is an ispiration to create my music.
: I would be that, but i’m a student, i study at “Accademia Belle Arti” in Florence

TMR: Is this your first band? for everyone personal:

Jack: Tania is starting a solo’s progect, for the other guys S91 is the first band

TMR: Why the name ‘S91’? Is there a story behind it ?

Jack: S91 is the abbreviation for “Salmo 91” (Psalm 91). It brings an encouraging message. The 11’s verse is the most important for us: “For he will command to his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways”

TMR: Who writes the music/lyrics in ‘S91’ ? How do you get in the mood for writing music? And which bands/situations have influences you for writing music and lyrics ?

Jack: Usually Frank and Franz write the music, Tania and Maria the lyrics. We wrote in a spontaneous way, maybe starting from a theme and creating the song’s structure. We always write the songs together, we pull out our music ideas and Franz organizes them
: I’m one of the composers, I inspire my music from my life, my mood and from my faith in God and the Holy Bible
: I wrote some songs like “Ribelle” and “Spazio Inconcepibile”, I’m ispired to Prog and Gothic music, when I write the lyrics I’m not inspired to some bands, but to the situations I live

TMR: How do you describe the music of ‘S91’ the best ?

Jack: Our music is a mix of Prog metal, rock and pop
: Is hard to describe the music of S91, everyone of us have a way to express it.

TMR: How does ‘S91’ stands in life till events in the world, religion and politics and in which proportion stands that till your music and lyrics?

Jack: We rarely speak about current topics. The first time we did it where in “Memories”, here we spoke about child abuse, it’s an hot topic.

TMR: For a lot of bands the lyrics are just a accidental circumstance, but for some bands they use them to communicate! Can you tell us how that is for ‘S91’?

Jack: thats an interesting question. S91 is composed by 3 (+1) musicians and 3 singers. So the vocals are really important in our band, and lyrics too. Unfortunately it’s hard to give so much importance to lyrics in prog-metal, but we have done a great work (for example, the opening instrumental “Golgota” contrasts the mainly vocal song “Spazio Inconcepibile” at the end of the album; and in “Memories” music and lyrics are complementary, this encourages fans to read the text and understeand the message). We are against the easy listening.
: I think the band’s music style is what remains imprinted in fans, but for our band music and lyrics are equate, they are two part of the same expression.

TMR: What is the message you want to bring with ‘S91’?

Franz: S91 is a christian band, but we are not willing to preach something, we just want to share our faith with our music, and want to tell the people how can they be Christian in this modern society, we believe that christianity is the best way to face the life, not a religion, but a personal research of God.

TMR: Is there a highlight you will always remember, since the beginning of ‘S91’?

Jack: Our first show at Montecarlo’s Theatre (Lucca) on 5 january 2010. It was a beautiful evening, there was a lot of people; they appreciate the show.
: There’s so much beautiful rememberance of the band’s history, it’s hard to choose one.
I think our first show at “Montecarlo” it’s one of this, I remember the hot audience, the emotions, it was an unforgettable experience
: Suerly the togheterness of us, our friendship is always in my heart.

TMR: And the worst thing were? if there is one:

Jack: The separation between us and our ex guitar player Alessandro

TMR: Name some of your favorite bands to play with live past and future: and tell us why?

Franz: we played with Inside Mankind one years ago, and it was a very great show, we would play with other European christian bands, it’s hard to name a few, there’s a lot of interesting bands, like Callisto, Seventh Avenue, Audiovision, Darkwater, Nomad Son, Dark Sky or maybe some big name from America like Stryper, Neal Morse, Shadow Gallery.

But we sincerely believe we would play with everyone is playing good music (secular or christian).
I would like to play at “Elements Of Rock” too, a Christian metal festival where I go every year.

TMR: What is your favorite food and drink? for everyone personal no idea why people always want to know that:

Jack: I came from the south Italy, but I live in Tuscany, so I must choose two of my favorite dish: “Parmigiana di Melanzane (o Zucchine)” from the south, and “Tagliata ai Funghi Porcini” from the north
: “Pastasciutta al Tonno”, Pizza, Steak, “Tagliata”, Beer, “Grappa
: “Penne al pomodoro peperoncino e basilico”.

TMR: First record you bought? for everyone personal:

Jack: I think it was “Standing on the shoulders of giants” of Oasis
: mm.. i didn’t remember exactly .. maybe “Anthrax – State Of Euphoria”
: I bought both two albums the first time, “The Division Bell” and “The Dark Side of the Moon” of Pink Floyd
: “Cranberries – Bury the Hachet”

TMR: What makes you laugh? for everyone personal:

Franz: ’50 italian comedy, comic cinema and stay with friends to say silly things
: Political satire
: my life and my sister Maria 
: It’s my ideal question, cause i always laugh

TMR: How do you prepare for a show? for everyone personal:

Jack: I stay away from alcohol , and before the start i walk away in solitude and pray
: I play so much and try the worst guitar passages, i’m always on tension before playing, i relax myself only after the show
: Personal reflection about the show, I try to speak with other guys of the band
: i try to be calm and concentrated … I’m always on tension before the start, I fear i err.

TMR: Favorite movies? for everyone personal:

Jack: “A clockwork orange” of Stanley Kubrick
: too many to say there, i love Westerns like “Once a Time In America”, “A Fistful of Dynamite”, “The Good The Bad And The Ugly”; italian movie like “Amici Miei”, “Lo Chiamavano Trinità”, “Johnny Stecchino”, “Fantozzi”; “Blues Brothers”, “The Mission”, “The Seventh Seal”, “Blade Runner” finally i like Tarantino’s movies, Monthy Pyton, Hitchcock, and many many moore…
: The “Lord of The Rings” triology
: “Io non ho paura” italian movie of Gabriele Salvadores

TMR: What is the dumbest question you have ever been asked? for everyone personal:

Franz: “Why do you listen metal?” eheheh
: “Are you human?”
: I don’t know

TMR: Do you have a life philosophy? for everyone personal:

Jack: Yes. “Never have regrets. Do all you can do to be happy”
: Yes i’ve got it, but it improves day by day 🙂
: “I don’t want to appear and get, but I want to be and act”
: I’ve not a life philosophy, but I think life is one so it worth to live it.

TMR: Are you visiting many gigs by yourself and what do you listen to these days? for everyone personal:

Franz: i visit so much gigs, but i’ve never been alone there, in these days i’m listening to Saxon, P.F.M., Boston, Trouble, Shadow Gallery and Exodus
: I went to so much live shows, the most important wich i remember are “Le Orme” at Catanzaro, “Jethro Tull” and “Dream Theater” at Florence, it was strange to went alone, but when the show started I felt like I was at home.
: I never went to a gig alone, but I wish I’ll do it some day.

TMR: Tell us about the hardrock/metal scene in your area please?

Jack: in the north Tuscany (Pisa, Lucca, Pistoia, Prato, Firenze) the heavy metal scene is very active. There’s so much pubs where both extreme and melodic bands plays. There comes bands from all italy playing with other local bands. In the last years we’ve seen big bands too like Dream Theater and Tool; and don’t forget the great Fabio Lione is from Pisa.
: There’s so much interesting bands in italy, but i think Italian metal music is more underground than other European country like Germany, England and Norway

TMR: How do you think about downloading music from the Internet ?

Jack: I started listening music when illegal mp3 download wheren’t so diffused; we burned discs and shared them, so us young people without money get the music, buying a disc every ten. I founded a very lot of bands creating my music culture. I think things aren’t changing with mp3 download’s diffusion, the most of downloaded music would not otherwise be bought. I download to know the band, and if I like the music I buy original stuff. At university time I’ve studied the history of rock and jazz, and I found so much music albums with illegal download, else they were too expensive to be bought, or I could not find them.
: I think it’s hard to find a compromise with legal trade and illegal download, but maybe it will be; whatever I think collectors will never abandon physical supports.

TMR: Last month you released your first full length ‘Volontà Legata’, please tell us about the album such as the recording process, the songs etc…

Franz: We spent so much time to record this album, but it was worth it, i like the sound quality we get and we have improved from the last album, the songs are more complicated, long and various; i think we want to follow the line of the song “Memories”, a mix of progressive metal and psychedelic rock.
Frank: The release of “Volontà Legata” is very important for this band. Record session was long and hard for me, because when i record an album I think about people will listen me, so i want to express myself and try to release both good music and my emotions, the message is very important. There was some difficult times but we faced them and pass away.

TMR: ‘Volontà Legata’ was released by ‘Morning Star Music’?

Jack: “Volontà Legata” is a selfproduction of S91. We recorded only our first album with Morning Star, after that we decided to do by ourselves, because our music style is different by that Label’s one.

TMR: What about the near: future, any plans? European tour maybe?

Jack: Maybe! An European tour would be an amazing thing, but now we play only in Tuscany and Italy. We want to sell all our cd’s copy and play more shows. We’re “searching home” because we haven’t an our rearshal room. In the future we would write two different albums: a concept, and another one, but it’s all still a mistery.
Frank: Future is always a mistery, but i think this journey is just started, we’ve so much “Will to dissolve” (VOLONTA’ da sLEGARE eheh) and so much progect to realize. Stay tuned!

TMR: Guys thanks for your time and the interview, we wish ‘S91’ all the best… Is there anything you wanna say at last? Any final statement?

 Jack: Thank you for this opportunity, i like the interview.

Weblinks: Official Website / Facebook / Bandcamp

Line up: Tania Petrone, Francesco Romeggini, Sefora Bonaccorsi, Giacomo Manfredi, Francesco Londino and Maria Londino.


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