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KMFDM, KGC, Drill (Lucia Cifarelli) - interview (2008)
2008-06-28 | Katarzyna NINa Górnisiewicz, Brian Backlash and dugoutTX | e-mail interview
NINa: You're the only female vocalist in industrial rock that I enjoy listening to. Your voice fits great to predatory music. It perfectly fills the gaps and adds a meaning to the songs. Did you ever take singing lessons before you started recording music?

Lucia Cifarelli: Yes I've studied voice since I was 16. Traditional opera training as well as contemporary. I'm a terrible opera singer but the technique has been invaluable to me.

dugoutTX: The first time I heard “Innuendo”, I knew there was something very special about your voice. Yours has to be one of my favorite female screams in the music biz - which juxtaposes nicely with your singing voice too I must also say... Where does that blood-curdling scream of yours come from?

Lucia: I never knew I could scream until my sister was diagnosed with a terminal illness. It just came flooding out of me one day while working in the studio. Since that day I've never stopped screaming.

NINa: You're mostly known from KMFDM but there was Drill, there is KGC and you've also released a solo album 'From The Land Of Volcanos'. What will be your next venture outside KMFDM?

Lucia: I have absolutely no idea. but I'm always hungry for new creative experiences so....fingers crossed there is something out there on the horizon.

Brian Backlash: KMFDM has always had strong political messages, and even KGC's Dirty Bomb had political undertones. Are politics an important part of your life, or they something you use simply for inspiration?

Lucia: It's a bit of both. Being educated about what's going on in the world and having a a point of view about it is important to me. Yes there are political undertones to some of the material I write because I'm heavily invested in the human condition. Politics of every sort play a big role in our day to day life, the choices we make, the implications of those decision.

dugoutTX: Along with the actual band discography, compilations, soundtracks and other collaborative projects have always kept the KMFDM name and sound heavily represented in my music collection. Any other special appearances we need to keep an eye out for?

Lucia: Not at the moment but stay tuned, the year is young...

Brian Backlash: Of the four KMFDM albums you've participated on, which do you think is the strongest and most realized?

Lucia: Hard to say which is the most realized, but my personal favorite is Hau Ruck. I can listen to that one over and over and never tire of it. Some of the best songs I've contributed to (in my opinion) are on that album

NINa: Is there any song by KMFDM that's so difficult to sing that you hate to deal with it anytime it comes up a live show?

Lucia: Light! I always manage to fuck it up. It challenges me every time! I have some kind of mental block with certain parts of that song, its awful and embarrassing at the same time.

Brian Backlash: What are some of your favorite songs to perform live?

Lucia: In no particular order: WW!!!, Free Your Hate, Ready To Blow, A Drug Against War, Son Of A Gun, Last Things.

NINa: You came to Poland in 2005 with KMFDM, and reading your review on LiveJournal it seems it was a disaster: "The people were nice enough but I didn't have common ground with anyone, so I grabbed my stuff and went to the bus and watched a movie." In fact we were expecting you to come to Krakow to enjoy your second show after that one in Gdynia. You never came, saying the bus had broken down. So what's the common ground you need? What are your expectations towards the event organizer and fans?

Lucia: No particular expectations toward event organizer's or fans. As long as the event organizers make sure business is taken care of its all good. We had no issue with the event organizers in Poland at all. The fans however were really strange to me! To begin with there weren't many people at that gig. It was like having a private show in someone's living room. No one needed to push or shove for access to us, they had our full attention before and after the show. From the moment we hit the stage I was literally swatting their hands out of my face. They were snapping their camera's so close it was unreal and trying to slap me as I moved from one end of the stage to the other. I've never experienced anything like before or since and I've toured many many places.

Brian Backlash: You relocated to Germany recently. What prompted that decision, and how are liking living there compared to the United States?

Lucia: We had been talking about it for a while and finally decided to go. Everything just seemed to fall into place at the time. Its taking us a moment to adjust, things that are so easy in the US are more involved here. The fact that I am not fluent in German just yet also keeps day to day life incredibly interesting.

Brian Backlash: There is an endless list of bands working in the "industrial" vein of music. What is it about KMFDM that sets them apart from all these other bands?

Lucia: I think the history of KMFDM speaks for itself. To lump KMFDM into the "endless list of bands working in the Industrial vein of music" is laughable. Myspace has created a cottage industry for every Tom, Dick and Harriet who has a guitar or can carry a tune and thus created a false sense of what it is to be "working".

dugoutTX: The “audio tastebuds” of populations vary so drastically across the globe these days what places recently have you found to have a thriving Industrial Scene? Who has brought the most electric audience response?

Lucia: For me the most electric audience response was probably the first time we played Moscow. It was electric and thriving on every level! The fans looked incredible and the energy was like nothing I had ever experienced up to that point. There have been other cities in Europe that have blown my mind since; Finland, Paris.

Brian Backlash: What for you personally is the hardest and most demanding aspect of this business?

Lucia: You have to be relentless and invested in every side of the business in order to make anything happen. The hardest aspect for me, is that I don't really enjoy the business side, the nuts and bolts of negotiating and bringing opportunities to the table. When your DIY you've got to do it all well, So I generally feel like an amputee because I haven't developed that side of things to the best of my ability.

Brian Backlash: KMFDM decided not to tour for "Tohuvabohu", and Sascha left us with the impression he wanted people to get a bit more hungry for the band the next time they came around. Do you think the break from touring has been good for the band?

Lucia: I really do. Before we announced that there wouldn't be a tour last year, so many people wrote to me saying, it feels like I just saw KMFDM yesterday. I love the fact that you guys are always out same time every year... A little anticipation is always a good thing.

NINa: You've been in the films American Pie 2, Empire Records (with Liv Tyler) and Aka Life is in pre-production. Do you find yourself more comfortable as a musician or an actress?

Lucia: I had songs in those films but I wasn't "in" them.

dugoutTX: You definitely have a magnetic stage presence & I understand you are getting more involved with fashion design as well. Care to let us in on what you have been up to in that aspect?

Lucia: I hope to get more involved at some point. I love every aspect of fashion design but up to this point I've only collaborated on ideas for my own stage wardrobe, which is designed by my friend Salvation: Ware by JME.

Brian Backlash: What are some items on your list of things to do before you die?

Lucia: In no particular order; travel to the Great Barrier Reef, Write a book, have a cooking show, make another solo album, have a #1 single, act in a movie, learn how to speak a second language fluently.

NINa: Can you remember yourself at the age of 15? Looking back from 2008, what would you have done differently then?

Lucia: I would have invested a hell of a lot more time learning the technical aspects of recording while working at various recording studios in NY and I would have learned how to really play the piano.

Lucia Cifarelli at Myspace | KGC at Myspace | official website
Pictures come from Lucia's archive, all copyrights reserved by © their authors.
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