Glasnost Wave Magazine, 09-10/1993

In the gothic scene where Italian bands had recently much success, Kirlian Camera is definitely the highlight. Long time existing project which never got attention from major labels - despite of all Angelo Bergamini, spiritual head of the band, has looking for the ways of his creative output.
At the beginning of his artistic career, he was member of HIPNOSIS - their technoid-synthetic sounding dance-piece "Pulstar" became international Hit in 1983, and then was the album of mellow electronic ambient music in the vein of J.M.Jarre, aptly titled "Oxygene". Even then it was not easy to trace out the differences between innovative underground and commercial attitude. Some labels (ZYX, EMI, Virgin, to name a few) tried to promote them, but with almost unacceptable methods - that's why Bergamini founded his own label called Heaven's Gate in 1988 and started release KC-albums.
After being labelled "gold", "Pulstar" was pressed in Germany in 250000 copies - "Heaven's Gate" produced new albums in quantity of 250 copies! Now they are all rarities. First CD "Todesengel. The Fall Of Life" was released in 1992, then mCD "Schmerz" appeared. 1993 began with small german tour (actually, first tour for 13 years). Angelo has special meaning about Germany:

"I like German audience at my best, because I felt here understanding and support for the first time".
His affinity to central Europa got reflection in many songtitles, also as in german language appeared in some lyrics: "Der tote Liebknecht", "Heldenplatz" or "U-Bahn V.2 Heiligenstadt" stands for weird, mystic attitude.
With the dark soundclouds of "Vienna" (their coverversion of Ultravox' song), KC enter us in the deep, influental world of the dark matter, which is ready to explosion. Melancholic violin's lamentation appears from black holes of infinity, following by slow, pondering rhythms. From romantic gothic songs like "Endless Rain" with angelic Emilia Lo Jacono vocals to more obscure spheric robotic voices produced by Bergamini, KIRLIAN CAMERA celebrate ritual in which folk elements in World Serpent style are merged with avantgarde electronics. Various coverversions are present in their program, but there are no special relations between KC and those bands - only mail conversation between Bergamini and Douglas Pierce.

"He is very sensitive man", Angelo says.
Acoustic piece "Raindance" was made this way.
"A Nothing Life", an album of Sixth Comm, is one of his favourite albums, as well as "Content With Blood". Stylistic similarities are visible if you take a look on wild magic shamandances which echoing in rhythms. Angelo points to his interest in celtic, irish, russian and finnish folk music, but can't give detailed answers concerning his fascination with rhythmic tradition that comes from european religions.
Ten minutes long version of Queen's teenager hymn "We will rock you" is the best example of unbelievable strong rhythm technic.
For him, music is requirement, the only thing which lead him through his life. When other people are feeling same, he is more than happy.
Angelo was born 1958 in Parma, the city in the northern Italy. It wasn't easy to interview him, because of nervous touring atmosphere - he couldn't concentrate on questions, and his bandmates, Emilia Lo Jacono and Simon Balestrazzi tried to redirect some expressions which can hurt Angelo's soul.
Angelo has mental illness, and he identifies himself with his own state of mind. Swinging words are painfully penetrating through his lips and slow fall from his mouth.

Angelo: "Parma is explanation for our music. Pure suffering!"
GLASNOST: "Are you suffering?"
Angelo: "YES!"
Very definitely and sure answer.
Angelo: "We must live further and survive to reach the heaven.
GLASNOST: "Do you really believe that you'll reach the heaven after your death if you'll be the good boy?"
Angelo: "This is a secret! I believe that the better life exists, because this life, this reality is true hell!"
GLASNOST: "What is main reason of your illness and your suffering?"
Angelo: "Around 1975, I experienced a continuous shock and was loosing part of my memories. I often feel panic and fear since then, I spent much time in psychiatric clinic..."

Here the interview breaks, Angelo goes deep to his mind, Emilia and Simon give a signal that I must change topic.
It's very different to pull out some words from Angelo without being familiar with him before - the childlike gladness is mixed with unsettled interest.

What you can think about man whose absolute faith in love and good gives them overwhelming hope to living for? Does he know about "black people" that is the most part of his audience in Germany, some of them are true satanists.

Angelo: "It's important when people have a possibility to meet, to share their feelings. They become a chance to release evil from their souls, and the evil is like illness. But I think that I can help them very little."

Angelo's soul suffering is real, and his audience has it only for a playground.

  • Oliver Köble

  • Taken from:

  • English translation: Dmitry Vasilyev