DJ Jason: Love The Ghost are one of my favorite newer bands. It’s so refreshing that your sounds aren’t overdone or trendy. Well crafted songs have a depth to them that is timeless, and yours are also quite catchy. Who were your influences, and would you like to tell us a little about your background as a musician?
Andrea: First of all, I need to thank you for your support, interest and kind words. There are countless music offerings out there and just being noticed and remembered is already an amazing compliment. Needless to say, being interviewed for Absolution is mind-blowing.
I started playing guitar as a teenager and was immediately drawn to writing and recording my own songs because the thrill, mystery and beauty of the creative process is extremely addictive. You get an idea, lose yourself, and emerge from that “zone” after a few hours with a finished piece of music. Where did it come from? Who knows.
I eventually began tackling other instruments in order to make my recordings more complete and so, step by step, became a one-man band.
Personally, I love all kinds of music but the material I release as Love The Ghost is influenced by bands who were great at creating atmospheres within a Pop format such as Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Cure, The Mission and Japan. However, I’m clearly a sucker for a good hook so I can’t deny hearing distinctive echoes of Rick Parker, Fleetwood Mac, Dead or Alive and Cheap Trick in the way I write.
How is the scene in Italy? Are the Love The Ghost recordings getting a positive reception locally?
Ouch… that’s a sore spot. Ever since I launched Love The Ghost, I’ve been honored by DJs from the USA, Brazil, Canada, UK, France, Australia, Greece and Portugal who’ve kindly played my songs for their audiences… yet, not one single Italian web radio has shown any interest or even replied to my messages. Honestly, I think I would’ve gotten more attention if I’d started a tribute band… I don’t mean to sound bitter… but I am! LOL!
These days, nearly every country has goth bands. More and more, they are singing in their native language. What made you choose to sing your lyrics in English?
I grew up in the United States so English is actually closer to being my native language than Italian. My vocabulary is certainly broader and so is my comfort level in trying to convey complex subject matters.
Were there literary inspirations for your lyrics? Or do they come from life experiences? Or otherwise?
Love The Ghost’s lyrics are a collection of some of my most difficult moments, dark feelings and fictitious conversations with the people who’ve hurt me the most. In a nutshell, it’s sort of a diary through which I’m exorcising some pretty toxic stuff, but I doubt it is as apparent to the listener as it is to me. My goal is to be honest and faithfully portray my present state of mind so that — years from now — I won’t cringe listening to them.
What musical gear do you use? What instruments give Love The Ghost it’s great sound?
I own a lot of (too much) gear, but for Love The Ghost I stick to a certain telecaster guitar for its particular chimey tone, VOX amps, analog flangers, a very deep-sounding Beatles’ bass and slightly-tweaked keyboard sounds from Cubase. Drums are usually a combination of live and programmed bits.
Love The Ghost has been exclusively a studio project. Are there any plans to change that and form a touring band?
I did try to put a band together, but I couldn’t get it to work. Truthfully, playing live is not something I enjoy, but I did want to get other musicians involved because I’m convinced that adding more minds to the mix would make the music evolve in different directions. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find the right creative partnership with any of the musicians I played with as they had too much of a “tell-me-what-to-play-and-let’s-get-this-show-on-the-road” attitude, while I wanted them to take the time to actively create their own parts.
Both your guitar playing and your vocals are quite distinctive. Have you considered collaborating with other known musicians or doing cameos on studio albums?
Thank you, having a distinctive “guitar voice” is something I’ve always aspired to, so hopefully I’m inching my way there. I never sang before Love The Ghost so I don’t feel secure enough as a vocalist but I would love to collaborate as a guitarist (or arranger) with anybody who is interested… so please look me up.
The latest recording, Azure, is only 3 songs long. This would seem to be a strange length, and as a number it is reminiscent of the old vinyl 12″ dance singles. What made you decide to release these songs in such a form?
I grew up with albums and still love the format, but I realize times have changed and people are approaching music differently, hence why I went for a “3-Song Mini-Pack”. The previous Love The Ghost album was released in 2017 so it was time for something new.
Is there anything you’d like to tell us about the new release?
Azure’s themes are dark, but the atmospheres are not as dark as on the previous album. The arrangements are a bit more open and some of my Pop Rock influences are slowly forcing their way out into the open… and I’m quite OK with that. Also, I’m becoming more comfortable with the imperfections of my vocal style which leads me to be more honest with both the voice treatments (reverb) as well as the actual performances.
Have any of the songs been printed as Love The Ghost CDs or included in CD compilations?
The first album is available as a CD (www.lovetheghostband.com) and I have been included in two compilations: Paranoia Musique Vol.2 (2017) and Dark Europa (2018)
Are you currently looking for a record label deal?
I’m not actively looking for a deal, but as I write this I’m realizing that it would be great to have somebody promote and distribute my music so I can dedicate my time to “just” writing and recording it.
What do you see in the future for Love The Ghost? Do you have any specific plans or goals, musically or otherwise?
I launched Love The Ghost with minimal expectations, in fact I only did it because the late Voe Saint-Clare (Angels of Liberty) accidentally heard one of my songs and encouraged me to get it out there. I followed his advice, the music was received well and I can’t describe how good it feels when I hear from someone from a distant land who appreciates what I do. I know I need to promote this stuff more, but it kinda clashes with my personality to push myself on to people, so I’m having a very tough time with it.
Also, I understand that nowadays bands must tour and that by not playing live I’m literally doing everything wrong… but I once heard a great songwriter (the late Kevin Gilbert) say that “quality always finds a way to emerge”, so my only plan is to continue writing and recording music that I believe is worthwhile, and to let nature take its course.
Would you like to say anything to your fans?
A heartfelt Thank You to those who take the time to let me know you enjoy Love The Ghost.