Aug 132010

Italy’s Fleshgod Apocalypse is one of those bands (and there aren’t many) for which we have this presumption: They can do no wrong. Perhaps someday they will, but until that day, we will willingly listen to whatever music they create.

We reviewed Mafia — their most recent installment of obliteratingly good music — on June 2 (here).

Various things have happened since then. For one thing, we learned the stupendously good news that Fleshgod Apocalypse will be touring the U.S. this fall with this lineup of bands:


Is this the best tour of the year? If it’s not, it’s very fucking close. We don’t have dates or places yet, but you can be damned sure we’ll tell you when we do.

For another thing, FA’s bassist/vocalist Paolo Rossi gave an extended interview with an Italian metal site called Metal Italia, which was published yesterday, that included some interesting tidbits of information.

Do any of us here at NCS speak Italian? Well, fuck no! We can barely speak English! But we do know how to copy Italian text on a web site and paste it into Google Translate.

Did we get nice, smooth, intelligible English results when we did that? Fuck no! We got half-wit, idjit, gibberish English. Fortunately, to use a baseball metaphor, half-wit, idjit, gibberish English is right in our wheelhouse, because that’s mainly what we speak. So we feel pretty confident we can give you the substance of the news revealed in that interview.  (after the jump, of course, along with a widget that will allow you to stream FA songs . . .)


Thanks to the technological marvels of Google Translate and our own marvelous ability to translate the Google-rendered English gibberish into words normal people can read, here’s the substance of what we learned from Paolo Rossi’s recent interview with Metal Italia:

  • On the surface, the Mafia EP is about the cancer of organized crime in Italy, but FA’s intent was to use the Mafia as an example and a symbol of a deeper human disease — the disease of greed and the pursuit of profit above all else.
  • Some of the songs on Mafia feature Paolo’s clean vocals. In the early phases of songwriting, those bursts of clean singing were lead guitar arpeggios, and the band experimented with substituting clean vocals for the lead guitar notes — and liked the results enough to keep them (we like the results too!).
  • The addition of clean singing on Mafia has generated some controversy among FA’s fans. It does represent a change from Oracles, but this kind of change should be judged, as in the case of all artists, on whether there is a reason for the change that’s connected to the music or whether it’s instead a calculated effort to expand the market for the artist.
  • FA is currently writing songs for the next album. The band is remaining faithful to its sound, but at the same time it’s innovating and experimenting. It’s not yet clear whether recording will begin this year or in 2011.


In other news, Fleshgod Apocalypse now has a ReverbNation page, which means we can now embed a ReverbNation widget right here that will allow you to stream some Fleshgod Apocalypse tunage. The widget includes four songs — one from the Mafia EP and three from the band’s debut album Oracles. All of the songs are, in our humble opinion, fucking amazing.

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  1. Dude. How did you know that today is my bithday? A new album soon! That’s freakin awesome. I guess you can cound me in with the group of fans concerned about the clean vocals. But they fit the songs so well that it would diminish the songs taking the clean vocals out. As long as they keep their core sound and the clean vocals to a minimum that enhances their songs, they should be great. Here’s hoping they keep the classical music influences and bits in their songs as well.

    Thanks for the post on FA.

    • Well, happy birthday dude! Glad we could unwittingly provide a little present. Like you, I thought the clean vocals fit these songs really well, without compromising FA’s core sound. I’m really looking forward to whatever they do next.

  2. I’m just guessing here, but it’s not like Fleshgod Apocalypse is going to become more like some of their counterparts in Italy (and there’s a lot more than Lacuna Coil over there) with clean vocals and hints of classical influence. Nothing wrong with expanding a bit to include something more to your music and based on what I’ve heard, they have found a nice balance.

    • I would really be surprised if they morph into something very different from what they are now. I do like some evolution in a band’s music, and I think the differences between Mafia and Oracles were interesting and didn’t sacrifice the sound that makes FA so damned appealing.

  3. Damn…this band has golden production.
    It’s ridiculous.

    • Yeah, it’s sick. The production was done by Stefano Morabito’s 16th Cellar Studios in Rome. He also did the production work on the latest Hour of Penance album, “Paradogma”, which also sounds amazing, and the last release by Arkaik.

  4. We got a very nice e-mail from Paolo Rossi about this post in which he said our bastardized Google-NCS translational summary of his interview was “pretty good” — which we hope means we didn’t screw up the substance too badly.
    It would be nice to speak a second language. In fact, we’re putting “learn to speak Italian” on our Things To Do list, right below “learn to speak English.”

    • Aside from adding leaning Finnish to that list…

      If you need to translate something, I still think Babelfish provides better results, but it’s far from perfect and there are a few pages I’ve tried where Google seems to be superior. It’s now a part at Yahoo instead of AltaVista.

      • I should have remembered Babelfish. The Google translation was pretty awful. Took lot’s of interpolation to make sense of it. But I still think it’s like a form of magic, no matter how imperfect the algorithm.

  5. Love this band. Will probably wear my glowing red Fleshgod Apocalypse t-shirt to Bloodstock tomorrow in tribute.

    And I like the clean vocals, in fact I generally like clean vocals in emtal and believe they have just as much place as harsh vocals… and can be done just as badly. Although in this case they’re a great addition. I’ve been stringing together a lot of Fleshgod and Septic Flesh recently due entirely to their more classical form of song-composition and sparing and clever use of different vocal styles.

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