Cult Projections: You’ve probably had more line-up changes than any other band in the history of rock and roll! Who is in the current line-up, and playing what?
Massimo: Since I founded the Goblin formations were varied, at this time the lineup is: Massimo Morante (guitar), Maurizio Guarini, Claudio Simonetti (keyboards), Titta Tani (drums), and Bruno Previtali (bass). In concert we play the best songs from the soundtracks of Dario Argento and songs from LP Roller and The Fantastic Journey of Bagarozzo Mark.
CP: Suspiria is the first of your movie scores to feature the band performing live to a screening of the movie, how did this first come about? Was Dario Argento involved at all?
M: We have worked hard for the film Suspiria, actors have shot sequences of the film on our music, then we have finished. We used special musical instruments, I played the mandolin bouzouki which is a Greek instrument, because Elena Marcos was a Greek witch, then the tabla, and celesta, that makes a sweet melody and disturbing at the same time, and Dario Argento was very excited about this.
CP: How easy or difficult is it to replicate the movie score live?
M: It is hard only to sync.
CP: Do you allow the band much room to improvise, or do you stick closely to the score that exists in studio form? Has the band’s live behaviour changed much over the years, and all those line-up changes?
M: There is no improvisation in the music of Suspiria, everything is under control, and the lineup is not a problem; we are three of the original members (Simonetti, Morante, Guarini) and two new, very good, playing with us for three years.
CP: Your signature sound - progressive rock – was influenced by bands such as Yes, Genesis, and King Crimson, yet you injected a distinct edge of your own, which lent itself cinematically. What freedom do you find with scoring movies, compared to composing actual songs outside of any conceptual constraints?
M: Our signature sound was pop-rock, the term “progressive” in the 70s was not there, this helped us a lot in composing soundtracks, and LPs out of the soundtracks.
CP: How important is the electronic side of Goblin?
M: The electronic side is important, but we did not use often, in concert we play by hand 98% and 2% with the help of electronics.
CP: The sequenced synth arpeggio in the Tenebre theme (reminiscent of the work of Giorgio Moroder) is brilliant, and remains one of my very favourite Goblin pieces. What did you think of contemporary French outfit Justice’s cut-up sampling of it in their track Phantom?
M: It's very different, but it is done well, I still prefer the original ... ahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!
CP: When playing live now, do you prefer to use older vintage gear, or do you prefer to embrace new technology? What keyboards are used?
M: We use original instruments because no technology will ever be similar to those, then also a bit of new technology. The keyboards are vintage except for a couple, and the impact of the sound is very powerful.
CP: I’m getting into the nitty-gritty now, but what’s on the Goblin tour rider?
M: We start on July 7 and will end on October 31, provided that you add no
other concerts in the meantime.
CP: Haha! You cleverly avoided that tidbit! So with the big critical
success of your recent reunion touring, and the already existing cult following
the band has, especially in conjunction with the Dario Argento movies the band
has scored, is there a possibility of further live score performances with
respective movie screenings (such as Profondo
Rosso, Tenebre, possibly even
George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead) on
M: We are working on this; it is likely that we will make them.
CP: Thank you so much for your time! Unfortunately I can’t make the Suspiria performance in Perth, but I look forward to seeing you play in Sydney in a couple of weeks!
M: Thanks to you, however Sydney will be a great concert. Bye.
Goblin perform their original score for Dario Argento's Suspiria live to an exclusive screening of the movie as part of the Revelation Perth International Film Festival, Thu July 10, 7pm & 9.30pm, and Fri 11th, 8pm, at C1 Luna