8 Bit Love

8bitloveAnswers by Vito Lucarelli

Who are 8 Bit Love, and what are you guys about?

Just three 20-year-old dudes who love synth, cowbells and to make people dance.

What’s the story behind your band?

We’ve all known each other since high school and played in a fair few bands together, but 8 Bit Love wasn’t something that happened till we had graduated. We gigged really slowly for about a year because of Matt our bassist taking a gap year in Shepparton. It was pretty hard to practice, but we kept on going. I’d say the turning point would have been Push Over 2010. It was when we finally realised that people actually liked our music, the gigs started getting better and we were no longer trying to hunt down shows and actually had people contacting us for once.

Explain to us the origin of your band name.

There’s no real huge meaning behind it really. We really wanted to be called Fire! Fire!, but it turned out there was another band from Melbourne with that exact name. Punctuation and everything. So when it came to deciding the new name we knew want wanted it to start with “8 Bit”. Once we said 8 Bit Love we knew it sounded right. A lot of people think we play video game music, like chip-tunes and such, but it’s really just a name showing our love for the old-school arcade games like Pac Man and Donkey Kong.

I’m trying to describe 8 Bit Love to a friend who has never heard you guys play before. How do I describe your band and style of music?

We like to call our style Electrock Dance. We’re influenced by a lot of current electronic music like techno, D&B, dubstep and pop, but we grew up listening to a lot of rock, grunge and a bit of metal. I guess 8 Bit Love’s sound is just what we do when we pick up our instruments. We’re just a rock band that listens to electronic music.

Tell us about 8 Bit Love’s involvement with FReeZA and how it’s helped you guys as a young band in the music industry.

We’ve always been involved with FReeZA committees, especially growing up in Shepparton. They were really the only gigs you could get as a teenager in that town. It was great because it gave us a reason to practice and write new songs. We definitely wouldn’t gel as well as we do now if we didn’t play so much together back then. Nowadays we headline a lot of the battles and committee gigs. It’s nice to still be involved even though we’ve grown out of entering battles.

At the FReeZA Push Start Grand Final in 2010, you took out the APRA Award for Songwriting. Who writes the lyrics to your songs? What inspires the music and lyrics that you write?

Lyrics usually end up being a team effort between me (Vito) and Simon. I don’t really think it’s our strong point. We tend to have a hard time writing them. Pretty much anything inspires us as far as lyrics go. Movies, parties, or general weirdness. The majority of our songs are based around general weirdness with a bit of meaning behind them, which we don’t really like to share. I feel if someone else can find their own meaning in our lyrics and connect to it, then that’s way more special.

Front man Vito took part in the FReeZACentral Mentoring Program this year (2011). What field are you in and what kinds of things are you learning from the experience?

I was lucky enough to be accepted into the performance stream of the mentoring program and get teamed up with Quan Yeomans from Regurgitator. The whole experience was really great and has taught me to just chill out a lot more with my music, do your own thing and what comes naturally and eventually success will come. He has also just been a really great person to bounce ideas off and get an honest opinion of what he thinks of my music.

What advice do you have for other young bands trying to get a foothold in this industry?

Just keep practicing, playing gigs and doing your thing, I guess. But be determined and never just expect opportunities to fall into your lap. Sometimes it’s better to have low expectations. At least you’ll be surprised with the result most of the time. Ha-ha.

Super Mario Lovers is your debut EP, which features four of your tracks. Tell us about the making of that EP.

We were lucky enough to get into the studio with a bunch of RMIT students who had to record a band as part of the Music Industry (Technical Production) course. Basically we had a 12-hour day in a studio to record as much as possible. We managed to get everything we wanted to record done in the 12-hour session. All the mixing and mastering was done by us, which was okay I guess, but we probably won’t do that again anytime soon. Mixing your own music is too stressful. We get too picky and end up spending forever on it. The first EP is always a great learning experience.

What are you guys working on now? What will you be working on in the future?

We’re currently in the studio as I’m typing this! We were lucky enough to work with David Carr at Sing Sing earlier on in the year as part of FReeZACentral’s Mixtape compilation. We had such a great time with him that he’s mixing our tracks for our double A-side, “Rock The Digressers” – just a couple tracks that we’ll be releasing digitally sometime in October 2011.

We’re hoping to launch it with a gig from our lounge room streamed to the net. Plans after this are to get cracking straight away on writing for another EP. Won’t make any promises, but we’re hoping to have that done by the earlier half of next year. Fingers crossed!

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