Interview Soul Secret:

"We really believe in this new piece of work"

(November 2020, text by Martien Koolen, edited by Peter Willemsen)

The Italian prog rockers of Soul Secret started as a cover band in the year 2004. Four years later the band released their debut called Flowing Portraits, followed by an even better album called Closer To Daylight (2011). Since then the band has gone through a lot of line-up changes and they released two more albums, namely 4 (2015) and Babel (2017). In October this year Soul Secret released their fifth album called Blue Light Cage, featuring guest solo spots of Derek Sherinian (ex-Dream Theater, Planet X) and Marek Arnold (Toxic Smile and many more). Currently, Soul Secret consists of vocalist Lino Di Pietrantonio, guitarist Francesco Cavezza, keyboardist Luca Di Gennaro, bassist Claudio Casaburi and drummer Antonio Mocerino. So far, the reviews of the album were great, so it is time for Background Magazine to have an interview with the band members of Soul Secret.

First of all, I would like to congratulate you with Blue Light Cage, the new album. It is your best album so far, I think.
Claudio Casaburi: “Well, thank you Martien. We are very grateful for all the good reviews that people wrote for this album. We really believe in this new piece of work and we had a lot of fun during composing and recording the album.”

How satisfied are you with the new album? Is it indeed your best effort so far?
Francesco Cavezza: “On a scale from one to ten, it's an eleven as far as I'm concerned! It's a pretty solid album, we've worked really hard on it in order to make it sound the we wanted it to sound, and we think we have achieved that goal.”


All the reviews I read have been awesome so far. Did you expect this result?
Lino Di Pietrantonio: “We are very happy that the album is going so well with both the audiences and the critics. In our opinion this is indeed our best album so far, but still it feels great having all these positive reviews.”

Could you please explain the title of the album? Is there a special meaning to this so-called Blue Light Cage?
Luca Di Gennaro: “Yes, sure. The first idea comes from people who think that they live their own lives, while in fact they were just watching other people doing things like watching a TV show. The British philosopher Richard Allen described it as a 'projective illusion'. We started out from this idea and we thought that nowadays some people prefer scrolling their fingers on their devices to watch other lives rather than living their own. Actually, they are all imprisoned in a cage... To reinforce this message, we used the blue light, a harmful component of the visible spectrum emitted by displays.”
Lino (photo by Thierry Bouriat Photography)

What are the musical differences between this new album and your previous one?
Claudio: “Well, I think Blue Light Case got more djent, funk and rock influences rather than heavy metal. Let's say that the line-up change is of great importance for those influences.”

How was the working process regarding Blue Light Case?
Francesco: “In general, all band members are occupied with writing lyrics and composing music. So, for this new album we all gave our input, even Davide Guidone contributed, who generally is responsible for the management tasks. We start with some riffs or melodies proposed by one of us. Then we work together on these basic ideas. One song was written from scratch by only one band member. You may try to guess which song that is and which band member wrote it, ha ha! Usually the inspiration for writing the music or the lyrics comes from personal experiences.”

So, lyrics are truly important for you?
Lino: “The lyrics express our thoughts, feelings and creativity as well as the music does. They give us the chance to tell a story which the music could only introduce. So, yes, they are quite important.”

I think Blue Light Cage is a concept album or am I completely mistaken?
Luca: “Well, it's not a story-driven concept as our previous albums 4 and Babel. This album is all about a common idea, but with different stories that a lot of people can relate to.”
Claudio (photo by Ron Koffeman)

My three favourite songs are: A President's Speech, The Ghost Syndicate and Breathe And Recover. Could you please tell our readers something about these awesome tracks?
Claudio: “Indeed. Great tracks you choose! These three tracks contain a story which are too long to go through here, but I'll give just a sneak peek. A President's Speech has an interlude with an anchor man talking. Initially, we wanted silence there, but we realised that it was better to have a spoken part. The Ghost Syndicate had as a working title Micheli, which is just the Italian name Michele pronounced in the American language! Michele was Luca's colleague and we used to joke using his name to sing the main riff of The Ghost Syndicate. Breathe And Recover is a suite. Its lyrics describe the stream of consciousness I've gone through on a particular bad day at work. Actually, it's a flood of messages I sent to my wife describing what was going on in my mind at that very moment. Of course, at the moment I didn't know that these messages would become the lyrics of a song, but it fitted perfectly!”

What are your own favourite tracks?
Claudio: “My own favourite tracks? I like them all, ha, ha.”

On Ghost Syndicate Derek Sherinian plays a marvellous solo. How did you get in touch with him and whose idea was it to ask him?
Luca: “We started thinking about asking Derek Sherinian as a guest musician back in 2018 when he joined Sons Of Apollo and when we knew that we were about to play together in France at the Very Prog Festival, now known as Ready For Prog Fest. We got in touch on Twitter and we sent him a demo track of The Ghost Syndicate and he loved it! We asked for a solo that people would not expect from him, so he provided us with that marvellous modal solo after tearing down the road. Well, speaking about guest musicians: another highlight is the massive saxophone play on the title track by Marek Arnold. He really gave a different touch to it, something never heard on a song by Soul Secret until now.”

And what's next?
Lino: “We've got some surprises in store, including some gigs! We cannot wait to perform the new album in front of our fans!“

Finally, anything for the Dutch fans?
Francesco: “I wasn't a band member when Soul Secret played in The Netherlands, but I know that the band had always incredible feedback by Dutch prog metal fans! We don't know yet when we will be able to play live again due to the corona pandemic, but we cannot wait to visit to The Netherlands to play some shows for you!”

Thanks for your time and answers.
“Cheers, see you on the road!”

More info about Soul Secret on the Internet:
       Soul Secret Website
       review album 'Closer To Daylight' [2012]
       review album '4' [2015]
       review album 'Blue Light Cage' [2020]

       Interview Soul Secret in 2013

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