Roma, Italy’s Bad Feeling Records, a small DIY label focused on hardcore, grind, powerviolence and similar blasphemy, has recently debuted an interesting compilation of 13 Italian powerviolence bands joining their forces under the name “Blastbeats over Italy”. Here’s my recent interview with a cool named musician, booker and the owner of Bad Feeling Records, Pompeo, who has been so nice to spend some time answering my questions on his label, local scene and the idea of running DIY projects. Enjoy!
Hi Pompeo! How are you? How’s your label? Please drop us a couple of lines of introduction for Bad Feeling Records.
Hi Karol, first of all thanks for this space you’re giving me! Actually there ain’t any big story about my label: I gave birth to it just to help the releases of my old band TASTE THE FLOOR, it was a way to lose some money and since the beginning I wanted to use it just for trades. After TASTE THE FLOOR broke up I simply went on coproducing my main band xKATExMOSHx, I helped a few friends with a couple of compilations and also I co-released the 7” split AGATHOCLES-NEID. Now I have the first 7” of DILUTION out (it’s the band I’m playing with Chicago’s SICK/TIRED singer and a couple of friends from DISFORIA and NEID) and Blastbeats over Italy that is absolutely the biggest project I made so far, which is the first record released only by Bad Feeling!
Yeah, the concept of this new project of yours is overwhelming. Tell me more about the idea behind “Blastbeats Over Italy” and the bands featured on the compilation. Was it a struggle to put it together?
I wanted to put together a record which should have been something different from an easy compilation of bands, but the basic idea was clear in my mind: I wanted to cover as more as possible a kind of music (powerviolence) that even if had a really small audience here in Italy had a bunch of really valid and different bands. Fortunately I had great models to take inspiration from, like “Possessed to skate” from 625, Bllleeeeaaauuurrrrgghhh! from Slap A Ham and more than any other record “Pasta Powerviolence-Speed Kills” from the Italian label SOA.
I wouldn’t say it’s been really a struggle to put all the material together, I’d say that the main problem has been to find a good and trustable pressing plant, at the moment the real struggle everywhere is to release vinlys without waiting 5-6 months to get them in your hands.
Oh, so it will be released physically, right? What’s the release date?
Sure, I’m not a big fan of mp3, my first goal was to have it released on vinyl! I made all to have it ready for some festivals around Europe like Obscene Extreme and Fluff Fest but the pressing plant has been late and they said I’ll get the records in August. Not their fault to be honest, it’s just a common situation created by majors that with their crappy Record store day are generating a serious stall everywhere!
Are there some bands that you feel are missing on this split?
I really wanted to include a band called PRUNE BELLY, but they had no unreleased tracks and their singer is American, so they couldn’t record anything new in time. On the other hand I unexpectedly got some unreleased track from Burst Up, a band from Palermo that is not 100% active now but that had a sort of cult status here in Italy. There were some old bands that it would have been great to put in but they are gone forever and it was pointless, I wanted a picture of what this “scene” is now.
Are there plans to release more sick compilations in the vein of B.O.I.?
Not really at the moment, but I’m in contact with many bands around Europe, it’d be great to release a “Blastbeats over Europe” but it all depends on how many copies this record sell. If I just break even the price I’ll be surely think about it and honestly as I’m writing I already have a list of bands in my mind :)
Ok Pompeo, and how about you? Have you been in a band? Or are you a label / promotion guy only?
The label is just a part of the things I do in my free time, I could say it’s the smallest part! I book shows in Roma with a couple of friends sometimes but my main activity has Always been playing in a band. I started when I was 16, I played in punk and black metal bands in the city where I was born, then when I moved to Roma after a few years of inactivity I started again with TASTE THE FLOOR (thrascore), then after we split we made xKATExMOSHx, DILUTION (jap-grindcore), NO CONFIDENCE (old school hc, I left them recently). Other bands I played with were LUDD RISING (Italian hardcore) and EARTH EDGE.
What made you want to start a label?
I just wanted to help my bands and friends if I had the opportunity. Nothing was planned and it’s almost the same now even if I’m thinking about doing it more seriously after I made this big effort to give birth to “Blastbeats over Italy”.
Where do you see the Bad Feeling project going next?
I’d like to see the new records in countries where the kind of stuff I promote is more more popular. I think I’ll try to send copies in USA, even if they have plenty of great powerviolence bands I really need to understand if people there can enjoy what Italian bands do. I mean, there are bands from here that are pretty famous in the States, think about ANTI YOU just to name one, but I have the feeling that lots of people overseas think that Italian hardcore is still just NEGAZIONE or RAW POWER. I just want to make people see there’s much more.
Ok, so tell me more. How is your local music scene, Pompeo? Would you say it’s well integrated, or are there some serious divisions within the scene?
It’s a hard question, I’m sure each person would give you a totally different reply… Talking about music I’d say it’s a pretty good moment, we have many valid bands playing different styles and many of them try to tour, which is such an important point if you claim to play hc or punk. I used to like more bands from this city years ago but some of them split up like everywhere else in the world, but fortunately there’s also some fresh blood, even my bands feature people much younger than me!
Talking about the rest there are divisions, bands playing just in clubs, bands that play just in squats, but I don’t see big rivalries, just people looking after their stuff, sometimes it’s sad but I try to keep a positive attitude about it and to avoid easy prejudices, we all need collaborative spirit around.
Photo by Michela Biscotto Midossi.
Have you experienced a lot of other local European music environments that can be compared to Roma Hardcore?
I toured many times around Europe, but honestly I never think about this sort of comparison! I focus more on individuals than on concepts like scenes or crews, I just try to understand the spirit of people who’re active in their cities and I’d say that once I’m abroad I don’t miss Roma so much, we don’t have anything more than other scenes :)
Ok Pompeo, thanks a lot for your thoughts. So what’s up next for you? Do you have any plans for your holidays this fine Summer?
Thanks a lot for this, it’s been a pleasure to talk with you. My main plan for summer is just next weekend, I’m playing with xKATExMOSHx at the Play Fast or Don’t stage of Fluff Fest, can’t wait to be there with my band and meet lots of friends. After that I’ll just wait for the vinyls to come and I’ll go on with the organization of Go! Fest, the festival I make here in October with a few friends, it’s happening on the 17th of October and this will be the biggest edition so far. In the same days I’ll become father, and actually this is the most beautiful thing I could imagine happening. I just hope my son will enjoy grindcore! :)
Thanks so much and till the next time!