Is it possible for a band to sound so Italian and not-so-Italian at the same time? It might be surprising that an instrumental band like Calibro 35 has become one of the biggest Italian alternative acts in just few short years. The band, whose previous work was highlighted in TRAVEL + LEISURE as “Groovy 1970’s Italian-cop-film sound tracks, giddily interpreted,” have played major venues and festivals across Italy and other parts of Europe, with several trips playing the States as well. It was right after one of these US gigs that the band stopped in New York for a week to create their new album, ‘Any Resemblance to Real Persons or Actual Facts is Purely Coincidental,’ recorded during a 5-day period at the well-known Brooklyn Recording and Mission Sound Studios. Any Resemblance… will be released in the US July 10 on Nublu Records.
Calibro 35’s Enrico Gabrielli (horns and keyboards) has played with Mike Patton, John Parish and prog-rock legend Damo Suzuki (of Can); Massimo Martellotta (guitars) has collaborated with Stewart Copeland, Mauro Refosco and Adrian Younge’s Black Dynamite Orchestra; Tommaso Colliva (sounds) engineered records for English bands Muse and Franz Ferdinand and for Greg Dulli’s Twilight Singers. Together with Luca Cavina (bass) and Fabio Rondanini (drums) they create the sound that defines Calibro 35.
Calibro 35 took a more improvisational approach to writing and incorporated varied musical styles on Any Resemblance… while still keeping the cinematic vibe of their previous work. “Massacre at Dawn” comes straight from afro-funk territory—an homage to Brooklyn heroes Budos Band and Mehan Street Band, while “Rain On Concrete” sounds like a French soundtrack composed some decades ago by Francis Lai or Jean Claude Vannier, but completely refreshed, revised and brought back to life in the 2000s.
There is also a more globally-inspired flavor to several tracks on the album, from the Indian vibe of the sitar-injected “New Dehli Deli,” to the streets of San Francisco with the heavy weight of the clavinet on “Thank You and Good Bye,” to the high impact horns riffs of Detroit’s Motown Studio sound on “The BBQ Band” and “The Package,” and then back again to Italy for retro-scat vocals on “Uh Ah Brrr,” reminiscent of the best of Ennio Morrione’s and Piero Umiliani’s compositions from the 60s.
The last pieces of the puzzle to fall in place are in fact two soundtrack themes from the composers themselves: Piero Piccioni’s “New York New York” (from the movie “Anastasia, My Brother”) and Ennio Morricone’s “Passaggi nel Tempo” (from the movie “The Swap,” starring a young Robert De Niro).
In order to prevent any possible legal action Calibro 35 would like you to remember: “Any resemblance to real persons or actual facts is purely coincidental”. They will take it from there. It couldn’t be any other way for the Italian band that has its roots in B-movie soundtracks from the golden era of Italian film.