Torino KILLERZ are finally back with “Dead On Arrival”, their new album. The perfect occasion for us to talk about it with them and get some fresh news from Italy…
You were one of the first band we interviewed back in 1999. It’s been long and the HOLLYWOOD KILLERZ has changed and evolved through the years. Can you give us a bit of history and tell us who is in the band right now?
(Harry – vocals) Hollywood Killerz is an evolving creature, it’s an hybrid between glam and punk. We got through several line-up changes, lots of demo and promo CDs trying to become the band we had in our minds. We started as a four kids combo influenced by the sound of infamous L.A. ‘89 era, we recorded our first demo CD exactly in 1999, and then worked hard to grow up both as a band and as musicians. Unfortunately all the line-up changes and drummer-dramas delayed our debut.
(Simo – guitars) Right now Lollo is back banging the drums, then there’s me and Dome on guitars, Livio on bass and Harry on lead vocals. Let me say this line up is a killing machine when it comes to rock the fuck out on stage!
It took you quite a long time to release your new album “Dead On Arrival”. How come? Did you have any idea about how you wanted this new album to sound like before entering the studio?
(Harry) “Dead on Arrival” is the last chapter of a ten years rock n’ roll confusion time. We recorded the same songs more than once through the years. Almost every year it was like getting back from the start. It has been a very stressful situation, as you can imagine. But in the end we made it! When we finally entered the studio we wanted our album to sound as a mix between D-Generation and Motley Crue. Now I know it sounds simply like a Hollywood Killerz debut album!
(Simo) Sometimes I feel like we were recording a kind of greatest hits album, as half of the songs were written in 2003-2004! But you know, songs like “Lovecrash” or “Goin’ Down” deserved to be recorded in a better way than we did in our old demos, so we couldn’t help but putting them in the album. I’m happy with DOA, even if I might say that guitars sound too heavy. But that’s the way the songs were conceived, so that’s ok. I can’t wait to record the new material, this time I want guitars to be different, use several instruments and amps to get the right mood. Keep it simple with a good vibe.
“Dead On Arrival” is out on Italian record label Street Symphonies who release quite a few records these days. How did it happen? Are you distributed outside of Italy? Any plan on releasing a vinyl version?
(Harry) Street Symphonies is a little record company that’s working hard to produce and promote the good old rock n’ roll that we all love! We met the guys at a GlamAttakk and since then it started it all. At the moment we’re not being distributed outside Italy and we are not planning a vinyl version of DOA, even if I would love it!
(Simo) Oscar and Stefano are cool cats, and they are doing a great job with Street Symphonies / Logic(il)logic. Even if we have not a distribution abroad, everyone can buy Dead On Arrival on www.hollywoodkillerz.net or on iTunes. Vinyl is gorgeous, hopefully we will release a 7” or a split EP as soon as we record the new material.
What are your favourite songs from the album to play live? Do you plan on touring outside Italy to promote “Dead On Arrival”?
(Harry) I personally love “700.000”. The song that open our shows, and it’s really funny to play “Lovecrash”, people like that song and they sing it along with me, I love it! We wanted to tour outside Italy to promote the album but it ain’t easy, because we are currently not working with a booking agency, so it’s hard to do all the hard work ourselves. We were planning to play live in Germany and Switzerland…
(Simo) …I AM Hollywood Killerz booking agency! And yes, I’m planning to play around Austria, Germany, Switzerland and France. I just have to work on it, sometimes I tend to be a lazy bastard! My favourite songs are “Home Sweet Hom…” wait, just kidding! I so love “Our memories may be right” and “Girls R Dead”. Also “Goin Down” is magic, and sounds ten times better when played live.
Some of you are involved in the Glam Attakk festival. Can you tell us a bit about it and introduce the festival to readers who might not know about it yet?
(Harry) The GlamAttakk is a 13 years old rock n’ roll Italian festival. We invented, promoted, played and made it grow up with our long time pal “DJ Glaze”. In a few words it’s a yearly show with 3 or 4 Italian bands and a foreign headliner. Thanks to the GlamAttakk thing we played with some of the coolest bands of the world! From Mike Monroe solo band to The Dogs D’amour, Vains of Jenna, Peppermint Creeps, the Sparkling Bombs, Nasty Idols, Gemini Five, Crashdiet and many many others!
(Simo) I’m proud of everything we did with Glam Attakk, but I’m not sure it’s worth organizing it anymore. See, back in the days, when Glam Attakk was born, the glam music was totally undeground and considered dead by magazines and radio stations. There were NO glam bands playing around. So we decided to kick the party off ourselves! After the very first two editions people started to get crazy and feel enthusiastic, you could breathe some fresh air… and yeah, hairspray. It was powerful. Nowadays… it’s weird, but you can hear people complaining that bands like Hardcore Superstar or Crashdiet play Italy twice a year! People now is spoiled, and more difficult to satisfy. Last time we had Michael Monroe headlining. It’s been the peak of the Glam Attakk so far… on one hand I feel like we won’t be able to make it any better, on the other hand I think that Glam Attakk has lost its “underground halo”, so we’d better cut the crap and focus on other things.
Italy still has a scene for glam metal/sleaze rock since there’s many bands there, some cool webzines, the Glam Attakk festival, etc. How do you look at all of this? How would you compare the Italian scene to the Swedish one for instance?
(Harry) OH! We got a lot of good bands, but it’s hard to call it a scene. Italy is very different from Sweden, big or medium record companies don’t care about rock n’ roll bands and the audience prefer to follow foreign bands instead of their local heroes. A scene needs to be supported by the people. We here got a scene without supporters.
(Simo) To be honest I don’t like today’s Swedish scene, too much “glam metal” to fit my taste. Anyway, Veins of Jenna are cool cats, maybe they’re the only “new” band I like. I wouldn’t talk about “scene”… we have some cool bands like Thee STP, Lester and the Landslide Ladies, The Leeches to name a few… some cool stuff and some shit too.
2010 is over. What 2010 records have you enjoyed the most? Best live performances you’ve seen in 2010?
(Harry) It’s been a while since 2010 is over!! Ahah! That’s because we are very fucking late answering your interview! SORRY. Let’s see if I remember what happened in the magic rock n’roll world in 2010! For me the best records of 2010 were the Jim Jones Revue CD titled “Burning Your House Down” and the Bloodlights one titled “Simple Pleasures”, but I can’t remember any impressive live show sorry!
(Simo) Primadonna gig in Milan, I can’t wait to see those guys again, they simply kick ass! A Kevin K show somewhere in northern Italy. Despite there was just me, my girlfriend, the bartender and a couple of villains, they played an old style true to the core show. There was Ricky Rat on guitar… that shit was real! Best record? I enjoyed Reverend Backflash “Who’s The Man” and Sin City Sinners “Exile on Fremont Street”.
Last movies and books you’ve enjoyed?
(Harry) “The Black Swan” is the last movie I enjoyed and “The Double” by Jose Saramago, “Everyman” by Philip Roth and “Men and Cartoons” by Jonathan Lethem are the last book I’ve read!
(Simo) “Life” by Keith Richards. A must read for every rock n roll lover! And “Hell Bent For Leather” by Seb Hunter, big time fun. I don’t like movies, I’m a TV series junkie! To name a few, lately I had a blast with “Fringe” and “Breaking Bad”.
What are the good and bad sides of living in Torino?
(Harry) Torino is a nice city, a little big city with a “working class” past and a trendy future. The most important hardcore punk bands of the eighties came from here and it’s a stylish city if you know what I mean. The bad side is about the opportunities, not only in rock n’roll or in the music career, but in every way. It ain’t NY… but I like it!
(Simo) I love Torino! It’s a city fulfilled with lots of artistic and cultural events, despite its industrial background. Nightlife is great, and we have one of the best live club in Europe: the United Club. That’s our very own CBGB! Bad sides? Well, I can’t find corndogs anywhere… that sucks!!
Imagine, Berlusconi is having a big, larger than life party and wants HOLLYWOOD KILLERZ to play, offering you good money, what do you do?
(Harry) Ahahah, Berlusconi would never call us to play at a bunga bunga party! I mean, Rock n’ roll is such immoral for such a good catholic man!
(Simo) I’d rather play at his funeral haha!
So what can we wish you guys for 2011?
(Harry) Half of the new year is gone, we played live supporting “D.O.A.” all over Italy, we played with Mike Monroe and recorded an amazing videoclip for the song 700.000. At the moment we are writing songs for the follow up of DOA, and I promise you it won’t take long as the debut to come out!
(Simo) Yeah recently we filmed 700.000 video, directed by Alberto Chimenti Dezani and Patrick Delorenzi at Problematic Ent. These guys did a GREAT job, we’re so happy about it! By the end of the year we plan to record some demos and then start working on the new album, I’m so excited as the new stuff sound good and inspired. So… see you on the road, and keep in touch!