Kirlian Camera have released their new video for the track titled ‘The 8th President’. While maintaining their dark presence that have become signature for Kirlian Camera over many years, they have also brought forth an original, almost dystopian visual and audio aesthetic within the video that demands attention. Think of the movie ‘Blade Runner’ when I say this. It’s almost world building.
The tack is all that one would expect from Kirlian Camera and, in some ways, more. There is a brooding, slow burning underbelly to ‘The 8th President’ that, in some ways, reflects the current state of isolation and loneliness brought on by the current state of the world. Reflective of the things that are, Kirlian Camera give a soundtrack to this that leaves more questions than answers and, while most current creativeness shows us what we could be, this shows us what we are. Brilliant.
Kirlian Camera was founded in Spring 1980 by Angelo Bergamini (who is a pioneer of electronic music who had, among other things, got platinum with mainstream side-project Hipnosis and reached the German charts with the KC collection “The Ice Curtain”, as well as being the co-producer of another golden commercial success, namely Elena Alice Fossi’s first SPECTRAparis album) and collaborated with many musicians, namely Trevor Rabin from Yes, Allan Goldberg, Beauty In Chaos’ Michael Ciravolo, :Wumpscut:, Dive, Sixth Comm, Charlie Rapino, Seasurfer, etc…). Independent hits like “Crystal Morn”, “Sky Collapse”, “Blue Room””, “Nightglory”, “Black August”, Eclipse”, “Helden Platz”, “K-Pax”, plus cover versions to Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb” & “Julia Dream”, Ultravox’s “Hymn”, Barns Courtney’s “Hellfire”, and a plethora of well-known anthems are mandatory spins at underground discos all over the world and the band is fervently worshipped by fans at increasingly crowded live shows. After many vicissitudes and fights against politically correct hypocrate moralism, the creative core of this unconventional and controversial band consists of Angelo Bergamini and the gorgeous and multitalented singer-composer Elena Alice Fossi. Fossi, who is taking part in the project “Stalingrad Valkyrie” too, along with Bergamini and helmed “Sideratica”, the project that then evolved into the high-end Electropop act “SPECTRAparis, also leading the acclaimed extempore acoustic-oriented combo Alice Neve Fox.
As for her singing technique, Elena Alice was personally trained by Oscar-winner Ennio Morricone’s most famous singer ever, soprano Susanna Rigacci. Lady Rigacci immediately noticed Elena Alice’s original voice and natural inclination for music, so decided to take her under her wing, eagerly encouraging that black-dressed strange and shy girl! In turn, still teenaged, Elena started teaching singing in 2 professional Tuscan schools and joined Kirlian Camera a couple years later. She was a huge fan of Kirlian Camera, when she – totally shocked – was invited to join her favourite band ever when she still was practically a child (after being noticed by a Bergamini’s friend during a party where she was performing some songs with an unknown combo…)!! The talent of this today acclaimed musician already appeared so clear when she started writing music and lyrics on the album “Still Air”, one of the most experimental and appreciated works of KC, year 2000… From that chapter onwards, Fossi becomes an essential key element of the project, since Bergamini gave her full trust till turning her into the real leader of the band.
Elena Alice definitively said goodbye to the world of high fashion and acclaimed stylists after a dazzling debut, in order to completely devote herself to the music, that is and remains the only real essential key of her life. She detached herself from her homeland, from job and from a really brilliant career as a model without hesitation, beginning the journey she had always hoped to take, far from any trendy fascination!!! A few years later she described her adventure in the world of high fashion with ironic and light-hearted tones in some songs that will become quite acclaimed. “No model could be more out of place than me there, so better leave that job to those who really care, to girls who are willing to live like that. I deeply respect them, really: but it ain’t not my cup of tea, as music is an irreplaceable key element in my heart!!!”
After successful anthologies such as “Odyssey Europa” and “Not Of This World” that went soldout in no time, Kirlian Camera released “NIGHTGLORY”, an album which Bergamini and Fossi are particularly fond of, although it created a certain disagreement between two opposing factions of the band’s fans: some declared it a masterpiece and others considered it a commercial record, too much rock-oriented. But with the passing of time many agreed that that chapter was neither boldly commercial nor experimental: it was simply a pretty successful album, despite the very low budget the band could rely on.
An intriguing chapter titled “BLACK SUMMER CHOIRS”, produced with class and talent by Elena Alice Fossi herself with a remarkable help from legendary top producer/mixer John Fryer (Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode, The Wire, Cocteau Twins and many other successful music stars) at mixing desk was released in 2013. BSC brings the band a little back to darker atmospheres and the song “Black August” turns out to be one of the most appreciated single-like tracks ever of KC. On this song it would be well worth spending a few more words, given that Elena Alice once again shows off a truly fresh, even innovative vein of inspiration, far from consolidated musical genres: in short, she goes to compose and arrange a track by combining post-industrial, symphonic, trip-hop, metal, and cold-electro elements within a matter of minutes and she does it in an amalgamated and masterful way. She practically created a new musical recipe! Many metalheads went to add themselves to the band supporters list, which not for such a reason lost consensus in the electronic scene! Kirlian Camera are a group that does not hold back when there is a career to risk, proving that music is the essential point to respect! In 2014 the band started working on a brand new single along with Covenant’s leader Eskil Simonsson.
That year Elena Alice went for the first time on the Magdeburg stage on the occasion of the 2-day charity event “Benefit for Kids Festival” along with Eskil… In 2015 the band headlined twice the popular WGT-Wave Gotik Treffen Leipzig, getting huge success, in front of more than 10.000 enthusiast and delirious-like audience. After 2 months, the band headlined the CSD Gay Festival in Magdeburg and the WGT success is doubled in front of a crazy audience that, after the 3rd encore, when the band has already reached the backstage… want KC back on stage for a 4th one, so… Elena and friends decide to jump on stage once again and the audience exploded!!! The people sang loud along with Elena the umpteenth encore in a joyful night that won’t be forgotten!!!
Year 2016 might be taken as a little historical date, because Elena Alice agreed to appear at the Electrika Festival in Dakar, Senegal. It was the first time in the musical history of West Africa that a foreign electronic group performed live! Elena Alice opened the doors to a new genre in Africa and the following year she got back to Senegal with Kirlian Camera. There was an explosion of clapping cheers as she appeared on stage with Angelo Bergamini and an African dj!!! Local guerrilla was already knocking at the door… but the event was successful.
In the meantime, Elena Alice goes to collaborate on a couple songs with John Fryer, for his Black Needle Noise (aka This Mortal Coil) project. Little by little the album “Before The Tears Came” turned into an acclaimed success and music critics literally went into raptures!
New album “RetroMachine Betty” by project SPECTRAparis, now totally renewed went to embrace electro-pop/electronica with an help from Elena’s big love for vintage electronics and futuretro sound shaping! Single “Star Bubbles” and album “Retromachine Betty” both reached the official German Alternative Charts (DAC) in the summertime 2017; in particular, the album suddenly appeared on top position, while SP decided to premiere the album at the CSD Gay Rights Festival in Magdeburg, Germany, whereas Kirlian Camera themselves appeared too, one year later, surprising those few who still thought of them as a tout-court reactionary and conservative entity!
“Sky Collapse”, the new single of KC feat. Covenant’s Eskil Simonsson as well as the new album “Hologram Moon”, (feat. Covenant as well and with John Fryer at mixing desk) come out between late 2017 and early 2018. The work sounds particularly immersed into dramatic, epic and romantic atmospheres, although sounds perfectly listenable and danceable. “Hologram Moon” glows in the dark age as never before, mixing alternative realities with alien life forms, till reaching and comment strange theories regarding the moon, till recreating a stand-alone life into various dimensions by means of what at first sight might appear as being well-produced and intelligent electro-pop music, but it’s on the opposite a dramatic theatre made of real and deep wounds! The single SKY COLLAPSE immediately gains huge success in the independent scene, entering the German Alternative Charts (DAC), taying 2 months in the charts, keeping top position 2 weeks long. Same thing as for the official Amazon Charts! But a bigger surprise comes out when the album HOLOGRAM MOON gets released: the band enters the Official German National Charts after many years of “exile” in January 2018 due to remarkable success.
Meantime, the Fossi-Bergamini dynamic duo went to release the long awaited comeback album of the martial/industrial project STALINGRAD VALKYRIE, titled “MARTYRIUM EUROPAE“: the album has been anticipated by a 6-track 3” mCD limited to 100 hand-numbered copies containing rough demo versions, which went sold out in 2 hours, before the project made its explosive comeback at the NCN Festival near Leipzig: nothing but a triumph! Elena Alice is in this period taking part in some projects by Jean-Marc Lederman (ex The Weathermen, Kid Montana, and collaborator of The The, Front 242’s Jean-Luc De Meyer, Kraftwerk’s Karl Bartos, etc.) and shoegaze band Seasurfer among others!
In 2018 Mia Winter Wallace, bassist of Abbath (Immortal) and Nervosa, as well as ex collaborator of Hellhammer/Triumph Of Death, and Alessandro Comerio (drummer of Tom Warrior’s Triumph Of Death/Hellhammer and Forgotten Tomb) joined Kirlian Camera!
2019 comes and Kirlian Camera brand new 8-track lp “Hellfire” comes out spring 2019 on Dependent Records. The result is surprising, different from expected, as there’s a plethora of innovative elements going to amalgam in this anomalous chapter. The cover of Barns Courtney’s “Hellfire” sounds as a mix of Electro and Spiritual epic delirium!
But the best seems to be knocking at the doors! Regardless of the Covid-19 paranoia and increasingly motivated to seek new musical solutions, Elena and Angelo together with the band and the German soundman Willi Dammeier, goes to record and re-record the many times announced album “COLD PILLS (Scarlet Gate of Toxic Daybreak)”, until they reach the level that suits them best at the cutting-edge of electronic art. The result is taking shape in the first double studio album ever made by the band… (a special edition of the work even adds a third LP of very atmospheric and courageous unreleased tracks!).
Of course, the new chapter couldn’t sound similar to its predecessor, as we are used to by KC !!! The overall tone of the album flies away from any classification, even more than in the past, if only that were possible! There is no longer any chance of labeling the sound of KC, which today almost seems like a completely alien and futuristic entity in the musical panorama! The sound becomes perhaps a little darker, at times taking on a vague psychedelic noir vein with a touch of “urban-goth”, kind of Gotham-esque atmosphere. Someone mentions them as “contemporary music composers” despite the fact that the group is always loyal to their rock heritage including pop nuances, even if pop music… it sounds a bit absent here, going to give spotlight to shining and immaculate creativity filled with “elsewhere” life and black sun echoes, where loneliness reigns supreme in favor of beauty!
The alien adventure goes on regardless of any trends and, on the other hand, many fans lie to call them as “Antistars”… Guess no “label” would turn out to be more appropriate!!!
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