Pipers Interview: what happens when you ask for a cigarette?

 Pipers is an Italian band, already widely known in the UK after the release of the debut album, No One But Us. The Band have returned with a refreshed sound more folk-y and less electro-driven, supporting Turin Brakes in Northampton in June 2012 and setting up a rousing end to the year and ready to release the sophomore Juliet Grove in 2013.

You have been on since 2007, and you got in touch with the UK music industry really early in your career, when Matchbox Recodings contacted you to use “Tonight Goodbye” in the compilation. How did the episode go? Was it sort of “OMG-are-you-kidding-me”?

Actually Matchbox just published the compilation and Tonight Goodbye was a finished demo song at that time. But was good for us as we started showcasing our music in the UK from the beginning.

How did your sound change from electric pop to a more folkish approach? Was it a conscious choice, or more a natural development of your music?

No it was a natural evolution and we didn’t feel it like it was a necessary choice. We don’t like to be encapsulated by a simple definition of musical style. Let’s say we slowly turned into a folk-pop band when we started to put the electric guitars aside and began to write in a different way. This is now much more personal to us as it reflects the band and the music we’ve been listening to during the last 2 years.

Talking about the new single, that came out recently, I cannot help to ask you: what happens if you ask somebody for a cigarette?

Ah that’s funny. The video tells the true story as they don’t even open the door when the cigarette is offered! Actually, I don’t even smoke.

I really liked the video of “Ask me for a Cigarette”, was it your idea or you followed Giacomo Triglia’s input?

Anything you see in that video comes from Giacomo’s mind. We asked him to take the lead as we think he’s very creative and were sure the final result would match our expectations.

Could you tell us something more about the upcoming release “Juliet Grove”, coming out next year?

Juliet Grove will feature 10 fantastic songs. We recorded in Wolverhampton with Gavin Monaghan, he knows how a brilliant album should be made as he’s worked with Editors, Scott Matthews and Ocean Colour Scene. We had an exciting time over there and felt like something pure and different happened to us for the first time. It felt like home and that studio was exactly the place where we should have been at that point of our lives.

How was instead being chosen by Tim Burgees to support artists such as the Charlatans? Again a “OMG-are-you-kidding-me” experience?

When Tim gave us the chance to support The Charlatans, Myspace was the only social platform for musicians. At that time it was very useful to discover new unsigned music and to keep up to date with important artists like him. It just happened. I wrote him a message on Myspace and he liked what he heard. Easiest thing ever. Today this would be much harder as a big artist can be reached on his personal profile on facebook, twitter etc etc.  and the more social media, the more you lose a real connection with people. It’s a weird paradox.

You seem to come back to England really often anyway, as you played at Liverpool Sound City, Mathew Street Festival and Creamfields. What’s the main difference between being on stage in the UK and in Italy?

This year we supported Turin Brakes and Ocean Colour Scene in England and the big difference is in terms audience reaction. People over there seem to pay much attention to unsigned acts and show a different enthusiasm. Maybe it’s just because we’re Italian and we write lyrics in their own language. I don’t know but I like the connection with the UK.

You are featured everywhere in the UK blogosphere, which is quite a good achievement! Were you expecting such an interest from the UK scene? How would you describe your reception in Italy instead?

At the moment we are promoting our single Ask Me For A Cigarette in UK and not Italy. We’ll start a proper campaign over here just when the record is released but we can say that Italian people are showing interest at this stage. About the UK, we’re happy to see a good feedback. We know that not everyone will like us but at the moment we’re building our profile over there and it’s going well.

Let’s be a bit nosy: is there one song or album you are currently addicted to?

Yes, I’m loving Dry The River so much. Their debut album is stunning. We hope we can support them one day. I also love the new single from I Am Kloot.

Last but not least, which are the main appointments in your agenda for the rest of 2012?

We’re playing with Turin Brakes here in Italy in late November. We already did it in Northampton some months ago but we played an acoustic set. Now we’re gonna perform with the whole line up and it’s gonna be massive!


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