It was back in February when I was cruising around Twitter and Soundcloud that I happened upon a group named Dear Baby Deer, the description of their music as warm, atmospheric, and dreamy, just drew me in. It just took one click on a song called ‘Drown’ from their first EP ‘I Never Thought You Would Come Along’ for me to know that this duo of Lilia and Gianluca, would become one of my favorites. I loved it so much I showcased it in my #SundaySeven spot on my blog in February. They are a talented pair, Lilia sings and plays the guitar, Gianluca plays bass, guitar, keyboards and sings as well. The two combined speak Italian, French, Spanish, English, and Korean, pretty damn impressive indeed!
When I found out Dear Baby Deer was putting out ‘Tryst’ a new EP this November, which if you ask me is so completely ambitious, I was right on it, asking if I could review the EP and write a bit about the bands origins. Gianluca, or as he refers to himself in his bio, G., was extremely kind to allow me an interview 🙂 I was stoked!
I sat down with him this past Saturday via skype with a planned interview, had all my questions written down, so completely prepared, but as we chatted, all that went out the window. Right away I got a very good sense that he is a real relaxed guy, this put me at ease as well and the interview became a nice chat, which I enjoyed immensely.
Lilia and G come from the same small town in Italy called Pescara. They came to know each other through mutual friends. Lilia was already working on her own music, G had been in music some years earlier, but took a hiatus to travel the world and educate himself (which he is still doing, getting his PhD in Human Relations,that’s what I call drive). G decided it was time to get back into the studio and record, Lilia joined forces with him and they began what is now known as Dear Baby Deer.
When Lilia and G are able to be in the same place, they rehearse as much as possible. They have friends who are a couple and are also musicians that have a studio. This is where they do most of their rehearsing. G says the whole vibe of being with everyone is like family and he would not trade it for anything. Even if approached by a major label, these are the people he would want to bring along and work with, it is comfortable and they know each other so well that things just flow so easily. I was impressed with the sense of loyalty he feels for his friends, it is refreshing and inspiring.
I asked Gianluca where he came up with the name for the band. This led us to a discussion about how we are both animal lovers, he so much so that he wrote track 5, titled ‘A and B’ as a tribute to his late pup Bismarck. If you have ever lost a pet, you know how hard it can be, they are like family, I think this was an amazing way to keep the spirit of his pup alive. It feels like a big hug. G told me that while he was living in Finland, it was a very woody, natural environment, and there was a ton of wildlife, deer were very prevalent. He said that Finnish people are very into Christmas, stating that they have every kind of decorations you can think of. One that got his attention were these huge lights shaped like deer, he thought they were cool and those lights became the inspiration for the bands name and also were the artwork on their first EP.
He also says the artwork for ‘Tryst’ was a photo he had taken of a friends home portrait. When he took the picture the background became black, and the deer looked like they were meeting secretly in the night woods, a perfect imagery for ‘Tryst’ which is defined as (if you do not already know, or have not had the pleasure to experience)
The one thing I noticed on ‘Tryst’, was that G’s voice was much more up front than in their last EP. When I asked him about this he said, “yeah, they made me sing, I have a terrible voice” lol, he went as far as comparing his vocals to that of a death metal singer, (she shakes her head) this is far from the truth but I love his modesty. The light airy sound of Lilia’s voice against G’s deeper voice makes for the most beautiful harmonies and I found myself lost in the music, made me completely chill and happy. The flow of this new EP is flawless, one track into the next, each one with a purpose and a meaning, all collectively making a beautiful story. The music gets into your head, and happily it doesn’t leave, I find myself humming their track #1 ‘Nevermind,We Are Not Here’ over and over, like all day, it is so great and was the perfect tease when they dropped it for our listening pleasure. Take a listen….
I was really curious to know what artists influenced G most throughout the years, are you ready for this, its quite an extensive list,this boy is schooled in music for sure, ready set, go……..killing joke,bauhaus, sparklehorse,flying saucer attack, movietone, spiritualized, stars of the lid, a winged victory ,for the sullen, dead texan, my bloody valentine, the whole 4AD catalogue back from the 1980s, from cocteau twins to xymox, passing but luch, pale saints, red house painters, etc. and then new (or relatively) new names: daughter, blonde redhead, XX, goldfrapp……phew, now that is a list and those which I do not know I look really forward to exploring. Thanks for that G!!
The one big surprise for me were the rock and roll influences that G referenced as influences such as chuck berry, little richard, lynyrd skynyrd , van halen, motorhead, and last but not least ac/dc which he states would be a dream band to see live. I love this list because it proves that music is timeless and that genres can cross and barriers can be broken. He doesn’t feel that this list perhaps fits into the Dear Baby Deer style, but I think if you look at the great guitar sounds you hear throughout ‘Tryst’ you can see their contributory factor. Long live rock and roll, hell yeah!
‘Tryst’ is one of the most beautiful EP’s I have heard. For me it is like an escape from the day to day grind, a stress relief. It is an epic journey of emotions like love, loss, desire , despair and hope. Lilia and G harmonize so perfectly, it is like their voices were built for one another, they melt into each other creating bliss and pair that with the ambient, dreamy, sometimes warped sounds of the music and you have complete sublimity.
Thank you for meeting me here in Radish Land, but don’t keep it a secret, I want you to tell the world of my new love ‘Tryst’ because it is meant to be shared. Take a listen and let my complete attraction become yours as well……