Go!Zilla

  • Talent  Go!Zilla
  • Photography  Mara Palena
  • Styling  Patricia Villirillo
  • Words  Rachel Speed
Go!Zilla, a psychedelic, punk-rock band from Florence, Italy, have been touring the world since their formation in 2012. Having recently played a small tour across the UK, we spoke to the band to learn about their influences, their internationality, and their future. They are currently in the studio in Florence, finalising their new record.
All credits from top to bottom, left to right: Luca wears top by Barbour Mattia wears top by UNIQLO Niccolò wears top by UNIQLO Fabio wears top by POLO RALPH LAUREN
You’re based in Italy but travel all over for gigs. How do you prepare for performing in different countries?

We’re lucky, Florence is in a cool position: it’s easy to travel all over Italy because we’re in the centre of the country, and also not that far from the rest of Europe’s capitals. We love to travel and thanks to our music we get to discover a lot of the world and meet so many different people. Travelling is tiring and stressful, but so satisfying. 

What is the most notable difference between crowds in the different places you travel? 

Every country has a different approach to live music, I’d say that the most intense crowds are the French or the South Americans. Italians are fairly quiet generally and Americans are the best buyers: they are really into supporting bands because music is so integral to their culture.

Why do you choose to sing in English rather than Italian? Is commercial viability a factor? 

If you’re a musician or an artist, I believe it is because you have a message to share, so singing just in Italian can exclude you from performing abroad or sharing your message to everyone in the world. We love a lot of Italian music but I think that singing in English helps express our music better and it is an easier way to “speak” with our fans all over the planet. 

Niccolò wears top by Velvet by Graham & Spencer and jacket by Penguin Niccolò wears top by Velvet by Graham & Spencer and jacket from Cenci Vintage Niccolò wears top by UNIQLO and coat by Nanamica Fabio wears top by Levi’s and shirt by Our Legacy Mattia wears shirt and trousers from Cenci Vintage and jacket by Element Luca wears top by Farah and shirt by AG Jeans. Luca wears t-shirt by Levi’s Mattia wears top from Cenci Vintage and jeans by Norse Projects Mattia wears vest, jacket and trousers from Cenci Vintage Luca wears shirt from Cenci Vintage Fabio wears waistcoat and jeans by Levi’s, boots by Hudson and belt by Perry Ellis Mattia wears shirt from Cenci Vintage, jeans by Levi’s and boots by Hudson Mattia wears shirt from Cenci Vintage. Mattia wears shirt from Cenci Vintage Fabio wears jacket by Levi’s Luca wears top by Barbour. Mattia wears top by UNIQLO Niccolò wears top by UNIQLO Luca wears top by Levi’s Mattia wears shirt from Cenci Vintage and jeans by Levi’s Fabio wears shirt from Cenci Vintage and jeans by Levi’s Niccolò wears top by Velvet by Graham & Spencer and jacket from Cenci Vintage Luca wears t-shirt Levi’s and jumper Filippa K Fabio wears top and shirt by Levi’s and jeans by Wood Wood.

You describe yourselves as ‘Acid Psychedelic Punk’, what is it about this genre that you find so inspiring as a creative outlet? 

That was an old description that a friend of ours gave us. I think Go!Zilla music is simply a mix of the music that we listen to and of our personalities without giving genre labels or names. Recently we’ve been exploring a different sound that a lot of friends are describing as “rock music for soundtracks”: we haven’t released anything new yet but you’ll be able to listen to our new production in a few months’ time.

People often say difficult political times lead to great music, do you think alternative/rock/punk music is reacting and responding to the current social turmoil? 

I don’t think this happening right now, not in rock’n’roll music. I think nowadays the great new music is coming out from other genres of music, rock music seems a bit stuck in a black hole because records are not being sold as well as they were in the past and it seems like people are less interested, but I’m confident in the cyclicality of the music world. One of the last artists who described his time perfectly was Kurt Cobain in the early 90’s.

Tell me about the beautiful artwork on your albums, who creates it?

So far we have had a lot of cool people doing artwork for us: my favourite one is made by Elzo Durt (Thee Oh Sees, La femme etcetera) that made the cover for our 7” EP Pollution/Gambling with the Crocodile.

Niccolò wears shirt by UNIQLO and trousers from Cenci Vintage Mattia wears top by UNIQLO. Niccolò wears top by Velvet by Graham & Spencer and jacket from Cenci Vintage Luca wears shirt from Cenci Vintage. Mattia wears vest, jacket and trousers from Cenci Vintage

Mattia wears shirt from Cenci Vintage and jeans by Levi’s Fabio wears shirt from Cenci Vintage Fabio wears jacket and jeans by Levi’s

 

How important do you think it is to build a ‘brand’ for the band, rather than just making music? 

It’s essential! And English people do it better than everyone else. You need to create a brand to be “recognisable” more than just being connected to a musical genre. Great bands don’t stick to one label, they are just crossing genres and styles.

In a notoriously competitive industry, what would you attribute to your success? 

We have grown by playing live shows, that’s where most people have discovered us. Though now is a little different as we’re playing a little bit less whilst we produce our records.

Which other artists do you admire the most? Why? 

There’s a UK band we like called Fat White Family, and recently we’ve been into a lot of music from South America. We’re trying to discover and learn different rhythms and feelings and they’re being incorporated into our new record.

Luca wears top by Levi’s Mattia wears shirt from Cenci Vintage and jeans by Levi’s Fabio wears shirt from Cenci Vintage, jeans by Levi’s and boots by Hudson Niccolò wears top by Velvet and jacket from Cenci Vintage.

Tell me about the new LP, what do you expect your fans to feel when they listen to it? 

Every record of Go!Zilla has come out in a different period of our lives, with different feelings and influences. The new direction we’re taking is to make music a bit more complex with new instruments in the line-up. How do I expect our fans to react? With laughter, hatred, joy, fear, whatever feeling… the main goal for an artist is to obtain a reaction from the listener, indifference is the only thing that scares those who are creating something. 

What’s next for Go!Zilla? 

I hope we get to play on the Moon soon, I heard from next year there will be a chance to go there. 

All clothing not previously credited model’s own.

See more at gozillaband.com, mara-palena.com, patriciavillirillo.tumblr.com