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Interview: Aficionado

With the recent release of their stunning new self-titled album, we couldn't think of a more perfect time to speak to Albany, NY's own, Aficionado.

Laura Carrozza spoke to us about the new album, At The Drive In's influence on the band, the future and more.

Alter The Press: There are so many layers to uncover in your music, was it a conscious decision to create that kind of atmosphere?
Laura Carrozza (vocals/flute):It seems that the layering always happens because of the way we must write when all seven people are contributors. There are some instances in which we feel that a whole song or a part in a song should be simpler and stripped down– it becomes a more conscious effort to restrict layers rather than to build them.

ATP: How did having seven members have an effect on this, and the way you write songs?
Laura: When we start writing, most of the time it will start with a small group of assorted members working on a skeleton of a song. When it’s presented to the rest of the group, we listen and add on our instruments accordingly. It’s often that a member might think of an idea for someone else’s part as well.

ATP: The vocal harmonies are something I have a particular weakness for, when did you decide to use two lead vocals and how easily did it gel together?
Laura: When I joined the band a couple years ago, Nick (Warchol, vocals) was the lead and there were several parts with 3, 4, or more harmonies. Our style changed a bit as we wrote new songs; we began to cut out a lot of extra vocal harmonies and auxiliary instrumentation. I had never sung in a band before, but once we got used to experimenting with singing together, Nick’s and my vocal styles just seemed to mesh really well.

ATP: Given that the shifts in rhythm always sound so fresh, is it hard for Mark (O'Brien, drums) to keep up, or is he the true driving force behind this distinct aspect of the band?
Laura: Mark is a very talented drummer who definitely doesn’t have any trouble keeping up. He’s a creative person who practices hard and that translates to his writing and performance.

ATP: Although you have a great deal of influences, At The Drive-In's is prominent in your music. How large an influence were they on your sound, your band and more timely, your new self-titled release?
Laura: The band has been together for around 7 years with a variety of members. At the beginning, ATDI was a huge influence and it was very evident in the music. Since then, members with a wide range of musical influences have come and gone, but some impact of that band still remains.

ATP: Has there been a lot of growth as a band since last year's release of 'When It Comes To Creation' or has it been a natural evolution over those 9 months?
Laura: I feel that the growth of the songs and group dynamic has been more rapid than before that album. We started touring a lot, writing more, and learning lessons about how we can best work together and be good friends.

ATP: With tour buddies such as Nightmares For A Week and Tim Kasher with such dissenting styles; has it always been your intention to bring a large amount of variety to a live show?
Laura: Definitely! I think it’s so important to have bands with different sounds on the same bill. It keeps everyone open to new things.

ATP: What can we expect from you guys in the next year?
Laura: Since we just put out our first full length, we’re all excited to tour as much possible and get our record out to as many people, in as many places as we can.

ATP: Is there any chance of a UK tour any time soon?
Laura: Yes, we’re due to head out there at the start of January with our good friends End of a Year Self-Defense Family. I think we’re doing about a week of UK dates.

ATP: What's the message you want people to take away from the new record?
Laura: Apply the lyrics and atmospheres of the songs as they relate to your life, and allow them to open you up, make you think, make you happy, whatever you want.

Aficionado's self-titled album is out now on No Sleep Records.

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