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FIIUM SHAARRK We Are Astonishingly Lifelike Released on March 10, 2017 - Not Applicable, NOT036 - Buy HERE

Quite few stories in need of being told about this album; many of which will not find due space in the fast-paced realm of Instagram stories, tweets and Facebook posts. They will all of course appear on the various social media, as isolated and short-lived bursts, and for all these reasons I have decided to set up this permanent table on my blog.

First thing first, Fiium Shaarrk are:

Isambard Khroustaliov, on computer, Maurizio Ravalico, on percussion, Rudi Fischerlehner, on drumkit.

So that we all know.

  • The genesis of the cover, and how we arrived at defining all the imagery related to the album, is too lengthy to be even told here, and I'm going to leave it to a keen interviewer. However, the photo was taken by one of my dearest friends, Benni Parlante, and the whole process was inextricably linked to my hometown, Trieste. The opulently upholstered dining room is one of the spaces of the Museo Revoltella, a building donated to the town in the 19th century by the Barone Revoltella, a local tradesman and patron of the arts, who also left an unrivalled art collection and a considerable sum of money to upkeep the building and expand the collection for centuries to come. We were very lucky to be granted access to the building for two days, and have virtually unlimited use of the various areas. Few hundred photos were taken before choosing the final two, and we can't thank enough Betty Apollonio, for facilitating the whole process.

  • The horse heads are the invaluable contribution of Alessandro Starc, one of the set designers of Trieste's Teatro Verdi, and are, incidentally, sawn off from a production leftover life-size polystyrene replica of the quadriga statue on top of the Branderburger Tor, in Berlin; hometown of the Fiium.

  • Various models have taken turns wearing suits and masks during the mid July photoshoots: Federico Poillucci, Andrea Bolle, Marco Parlante, myself; and Yara Apollonio was there all the time to help keeping everything tidy.

  • The title of the album is borrowed by kind permission from an artwork by the American artist Barbara Kruger, "We Are Astonishingly Lifelike / Help, I'm Locked Inside This Picture!". Yet another signal of how much this adventure belongs to Berlin was given when, after a short hunt, we discovered that miss Kruger is represented in Europe by the Berlin-based gallery Sprüth Magers. It was a pleasant visit, and we were delighted and flattered by hearing that Barbara liked the cover, and she was happy with us using her title.

  • Alessandro Petrussa and Tiziano Bole, from Little Paris Productions, have taken the whole iconography of the album cover (and the horse heads) and wrote a script, directed and produced a video for our opening track, Conundrums. Praise goes to them and to the whole Little Paris crew, for taking this initiative and expanding the mythology of the band. The video can be seen on Little Paris' Youtube channel. It is purely coincidental that on the video we made four years ago to accompany Wozzeck's Variations, one of our first album's tracks, the main characters are men in black suits, wearing dog masks.

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