It seems that CACs, MCs or simply tapes are living a (more or less welcomed) new golden age in the independent music market and there are even many sound artists who re-release stuff on this magnetic support, but the operation that Disasters By Choice made with a bunch of some old tapes by Sicilian producer Salvo Pinzone aka Skrima followed the opposite direction. His wonderful native Italian region left traces on his memories, his moniker (check the explanation below), his interest in volcanoes and as well as on the sleeves of this collection, titled “Tapes”, (printed on 200 white vinyls), handmade by @Kolatadesign – moniker of Salvo’s partner Daniela Cavasin -, which also used epoxy resin and volcanic lapilli. Have a check!
Chain D.L.K.: Hi Salvo! How are you?
Skrima: Very well!!!
Chain D.L.K.: First of all, what’s the meaning or the origin of the meaning of the name Skrima? Something related to hairstyle or volcanoes?
Skrima: Scrima in Sicilian is the hair line, for me Skrima is a thin line of demarcation ….
Chain D.L.K.: As you maybe guessed the reference of the previous question came after the bizarre idea for the material you used for the cover artwork… can you describe how such an idea came up to your mind?
Skrima: My partner Daniela is a designer @Kolatadesign and works the epoxy resin, together we had the idea to insert the volcanic lapilli after the resin casting on the cardboard of the cover, I thought about the lapillo to feel near to Stromboli and then the idea of excrescences on cover made me think of something that scratches that leaves a mark for better or for worse.
Chain D.L.K.: Is there any connection between the way you forged the cover artwork and what our readers could expect by listening to Tapes?
Skrima: More than a connection is the application of the handmade method, which is inherent both in the treatment of the tapes and the manual use of the effects, and in the processing of the resin that my partner Daniela applies in its creation.
Chain D.L.K.: A title like Tapes is less misunderstandable… it’s pretty amazing the way the sound of those tapes got preserved…or did you use some tricks during the mastering?
Skrima yes, the title Tapes was natural … yes, I was lucky, the tapes were well-preserved along with my old four tracks, everything was done in an analogical way, the post-production work in 2017 was done to reduce the tapes noise and bring the sound of each track to the same level
Chain D.L.K.: The medium isn’t the only “vintage” element of this release, as I read the sound source of a part of those tapes were old synths like the well-known Casio, weren’t they?
Skrima: Yes I used old Casio keyboards, which had faulty keys that released a beautiful delay…
Chain D.L.K.: Besides the medium and the source, is there any listening that acted as a source for inspiration?
Skrima: I grew up in Sicily with many friends who were very technical musicians, they were the years of the seventies prog, I had chosen a different kind of music, I loved Brian Eno, punk, reggae, post-punk, the wave, the electronic. When I was young, at night I locked myself in the basement of my friends and freed my desire to torture the sounds with the effects, I recorded everything and then manipulated them again to make the initial sound unrecognizable, I love my bass semi acoustic Hofner.
Chain D.L.K.: How did you begin to forge, record and deform sounds?
Skrima: I begin recording this material in the early eighties with poor equipment, recorders and microphones of low quality but with a nice set of effects and a four tracks, later I treated some parts recorded on tape with a cotton swab covered in light sandpaper that helped me to transfigure the original sounds,
Chain D.L.K.: Is there any sonic elements in Tapes belonging to your roots?
Skrima: Surely nature in Sicily is an essential element that somehow always resurfaces. From the musical point of view the street where I lived was an industrial street full of mechanical workshops of various kinds, from home, at certain hours you could hear so many different noises that fascinated me to the point of recording them.
Chain D.L.K.: Besides the reference in the title “Eetnaa”, what’s the relation between that track and the notorious Sicilian volcano?
Skrima: It is a track dedicated to Etna.
Chain D.L.K.: I remember a release by Geir Jenssen (better known as Biosphere), related to Stromboli, based on field recordings grabbed nearby the crater’s edge… I know you also dedicated a track to Stromboli… did you include any field recordings?
Skrima: Yes there are field recordings but sinus drones have been treated and transformed.
Chain D.L.K.: Why did you focus on volcanoes?
Skrima: In Sicily there are two active volcanoes Etna and Stromboli, which is my favorite, the islanders with devotion call Iddu, when I can go to find it, I love the natural sounds that emanates and its slow castings of fire that fry when they touch the water of the sea, I think that the men pass, The volcanoes in this land have always lived ….
Chain D.L.K.: Can you tell us something about your imprint Disasters By Choice and its upcoming and past outputs?
Skrima: I always chose the music that emotionally sent me something, in the catalog you find many expressions but all lead to my mood, an unforgettable moment was with the compilation 13 Elements, in the post-rock period with many names become important, sold out in two days. I state that I love all my releases, but I want to mention three small jewels, which did not have much luck, certainly due to the bad distribution and the moment of the CD decline, Echoes of The Whales and Me: mo (Beijing musician) and then the 10 “Hiss, post-punk duo loosened after a short European tour. For the future I’m looking for a young band that wants to play really, maybe with conceptual hints close to the Broadcast that I love.
visit Skrima on bandcamp at: skrima.bandcamp.com