Diafanes / Art Rock from Brazil / The next step to uneven experimental melodies

Diafanes - Interview by Dennis Rowehl

DIAFANES from Sao Paulo, Brazil, are definitely not mainstream at all and perform uneven and experimental Art Rock at its best and unexpected. Crowded shows in the USA and of course also in Brazil. Now they released their new album AVE and it’s time to come over to Europe. So we scheduled a nice interview with Lorena Hollander, singer, guitarist and artist …

Interview: Dennis Rowehl

Pics: Lucio Tamino

entertaim.net: You played a successful US-tour … by the way … your music is definitely very experimental … so, what kind of people belong to your target group?

Lorena: I think people who look for bands like us are usually people who don’t listen to what radio or TV imposes. Our audience is not passive, we play and sell music to people who are seeking music that is not entertainment but art. It’s easy to think that there’s not a lot of people who are looking for that, but it’s surprising to see how many people are tired of listening to the same melodies and chords that have been played exhaustively by bands that sound exactly the same. Music is a worldwide passion and I think that the only problem that independent bands have is getting people to know that they exist. There’s still a lot of money in the music business and it feels to me that people who have the power to do something and make the music scene better unfortunately are only committed to money, not to music.

entertaim.net: If I’m right you’re just recording the new album. When will you have finished this and do you have a release date yet?

Lorena: We actually just released this new album that we recorded here in Sao Paulo from February to July, and that was mixed in Los Angeles and mastered in New York in August and September.

entertaim.net: Wow, well, I didn#T know that (laughing).

Lorena: Don’t worry (laughing). This new album is called “Ave” and we released it here in Sao Paulo this month to celebrate the band’s 10th anniversary. For this occasion we performed a new show that we have 2 simultaneous projections synced to each song. Everything about this was very special and, for me, very personal as well. It was a wonderful experience to do all this and to have the great honor of working with amazing people during all this process: Darrell Thorp, who mixed this album, already worked in albums of two of my very favorite artists: Paul McCartney and Radiohead. Michael Fossenkemper who did the master also worked with many great artists that I have great admiration. And here from Brazil, we had the participation of the visual artists Tamino, Gregorio Gruber and Aguilar, and from one of my favorite musicians from Sao Paulo: Andre Abujamra.

entertaim.net: I still expect the unexpected (laughing) So, are there any musical changes? Possibly more heavy riffs?

Lorena: The album is full of contrasts, we have heavy songs as well as softer ones. We still have influences from all around the world, mixing our music with a lot of oriental spices. We have four songs in Portuguese,  five in English, and one that mixes both languages. Besides playing guitar and singing, I play the koto (Japanese harp) in two songs, and besides playing heavy riffs and beautiful solos in the guitar, Ciro plays the theremin. On the bass and drums we have Leandro and Leo and their work on the album was awesome cause they are both great rock musicians, but they have something else going on, maybe that different rhythmic flavoring that Brazil is well known for.

entertaim.net: Any plans for another tour outside Brazil?

Lorena: Not yet, but we are working on it cause we really wanted to perform this new show with the 2 synced projections and the new songs overseas. With the projections in this new show we present music together with many other forms of art, like painting, photography, motion pictures, dance and performance, the same way we connect Brazilian, Japanese and other oriental sonorities with rock music. I think the act of mixing is a great Brazilian virtue, the global famousness of the Brazilian beauty is actually the result of the mix of the races. Bossa Nova, the most famous Brazilian genre is a mix of samba and jazz. We are trying to give this Brazilian touch to things that you can see all around the globe and to show it internationally on tours is fantastic and a great life experience.

entertaim.net: When will YOU be in Germany the next time, possibly with Diafanes or as artist?

Lorena: One of our goals for 2013 is to come to Europe cause we have toured the USA five times, almost five years in a roll, and we have never played in Europe! If everything works out, Cologne will be definitely be the city we’ll stop and take some time to go sightseeing and hang out cause I had a great time when I went to Cologne in the past!

entertaim.net: By the way … do you have some exhibitions in progress?

Lorena: A previous series of photos I’ve worked on, called UrbanosSoma, is being exhibited here in Brazil as an itinerant art show. This exhibition will travel for years here in Brazil and I have already sent some pictures of this series to art shows in Brussels, Paris, Beijing etc. For this new album I produced a whole new series of works that mixes photographs with a calligraphy art form. I’m working now with these series, and planning where and when they will be exhibited. They have the same title as the album, “Ave”, and the same theme: birds.

entertaim.net: Experimental music is not really music for the masses. Do you like mainstream music? Do you have some current fave bands?

Lorena: I do like some mainstream artists and listen to pop music. I’m actually very eclectic, I listen to almost all genres. My favorite artists are Radiohead, Beatles, Pink Floyd, Smashing Pumpkins, Garbage, Queen, Queens of the Stone Age, among others. And here from Brazil my top list is: Chico Buarque, Mutantes, Karnak, Andre Abujamra.

entertaim.net: As a musician … what would be the biggest challenge or do you have a band you’d like to support on some shows?

Lorena: As a musician, especially here in Brazil, that the independent scene doesn’t have much audience and support, the biggest challenge is actually to survive as a band, to keep active, performing, recording etc. I think each time we release a new album, perform the show the way we intend it to be, is a victory. So right now, that we recorded this new album and produced this new show with 2 synced projections all by ourselves, it feels like a great triumph.

entertaim.net: Lorena, thanks, … , alays a pleasure talking to you …

Lorena: Thank you, Dennis

Lorena Hollander Interview by Dennis Rowehl