Vertical Dive Bottled Version
Our unusual concept of music...
Vertical dive is an Italian band formed in the second half of 2018. The members are: Alberto Bonso (voice and guitar), Nicola Mihailovic (Guitar), Nicola Begotto (Bass) and Massimo Galeotti (Drums). Influences come from different music genres, but Vertical Dive finds its essence in the hard rock style. Music, lyrics and pictures speak together about the complexity of the reality we are living in, fascinating but weak at the same time. Their very first album is called Vertical Dive, released on 24th December 2020.
A choice and then the jump
the surface crust makes us lazy
but we should break into the depth of things
seek the silence
air fills the lungs
all of this is
The story of Vertical Dive begins at the end of 2016, when Nicola (bass) and Massimo (drums) ended a punk project, and decided to try it again for real. They reached out to an old friend, a guitar player with whom Nicola had already played before, many years ago. The only issue was that the third bandmate was living in Germany. The attempt started well, they had good chemistry together and a great desire of playing live.
In the beginning the distance was no big deal, since they were meeting halfway in Merano in a rehearse room so hippy to have Persians carpets on the floor, non mentionable fabric on the wall and a typical smell of poor quality incense. Throw back to those days one song echoes in their minds among all: Cupid’s Dead by Extreme… Then everything became a little bit difficult, and the project stoped.
After saying goodbye to their old friend, Nicola and Massimo started again the research for new members nearby, which actually led to the birth of Vertical Dive. Nicola (guitar), an old friend of the founders, texted back almost by chance to their message: - “hey dude, are you still into playing?” - “I’ve recently started over again” - “What do you think of starting a band? Little to no covers, and an original album as soon as possibile” - “For sure! When do we start?”...
From the second half of 2017 those 3 guys begun to meet regularly, cover after cover the sound started to build up and the first ideas came along. Month by month those 3 realized that the ingredients to create a memorable project were in their hands. It often happened that someone would stere at the entrance of their rehearsal room and end up saying “ you guys rock!”… But an ingredient was still missing to complete the recipe.
The final piece
In June 2018, after Foo fighters concert at Firenze Rock, Alberto (voice) went back home with a belief: he needs to start playing again; he definitely wants to go back to the other side of the control room of the recording studio. He opened a well known listing site for musicians, replied to a message and in that exact moment Vertical Dive was born. Many other musicians had replied to that message, but the place was his, it had to be. Back to those weeks there was a video coming up on the phones of Massimo and Nicola, an instrumental live session of them playing “Had Enough” by Lower than Atlantis. It was quite good, but without a voice every dream of going back on stage quickly vanished. On the 22nd of June 2018 Alberto walked into the room and started singing the first verse lyrics: “ I hate everyone that I meet”. It was clear, everything was in its place, and that young and fresh-faced guy was making the difference. In that precise moment all of them realized they had found the missing part. That’s how Vertical Dive were born.
In the same time they completed the setup of their own rehearsal room, where their very first Album had come to life. In 10 months 8 tracks were ready for pre production, then something happened that characterized the entire workflow of the band from that moment on. All the recordings were good enough, and what was planned to be only a draft to be revisioned, turned out to be the definitive recording for the album. All of that was made possibile thanks to Alberto’s experience in recording studios and Nicola’s years of work as a technician on live stages. The hardware that had been involved certainly didn’t match the requirements of a truly professional studio, but the hard work and the constant search for an unreachable perfection reduced the gap, and convinced the four guys that they could have done it all alone. The freedom of having a constantly accessible private rehearsal room, also acting as a sort of shelter, made the foundation of their work that had came to life shortly after.
The band wasn’t complete yet, there was still a missing element. What’s the name of this project? Giving a name to all of that was probably the hardest challenge they had to face. The idea behind the selection of the name certainly wasn’t their best insight. They arranged a weekly brainstorming session after every rehearsal. But a brainstorming session with a fridge full of beers and four thirsty people attending it isn’t the fastest way to reaching an agreement. In fact months passed by, for a certain moment it seemed that the only options available would be “Don’t Worry Mama” or “Mariachi of Death” (it certainly isn’t clear what a confused mind can achieve). Suddenly, in a moment of extreme clarity came a question: why it’s so difficult to find a name while it’s so easy to build up our own sound from the first song we played? If there’s something that bonds these 4 people who are so different from each other it certainly must be discovered below the surface, into the depth of things. All of that became their manifesto, and reading it while zooming out for the big picture they realized their name: Vertical Dive - A deep dive beyond the visible, searching what’s hiding inside. Aware they will not always find an answer into the darkness of those depths, but striving to find what the reality conceals.
As in any self-respecting story, the hero undertakes a quest full of obstacles. Let's say that in this story, there are a few heroes. On the other hand, the obstacles do not take long to arrive. The recording of the instrumental parts of the Album ended at the end of September 2019. Voices and arrangements were missing, but the band was almost ready for playing live on a stage. Target: release of the album in March and from then on, don’t miss any chance for playing live. But then came 2020 ...
In January all the voices and arrangements were performed, Alberto began to refine the mix. The word Covid19 was heard only in bad taste jokes about the Chinese, but as an omen of a year to forget, the computer they were working on decided to pass to a better life... everything stoped and that aluminum box (now useless) contained all the work of the last few months like a safe. Obviously a safe whose key had been lost.
If someone were to read the exchange of messages between the 4 Vertical Dive in that period of time one day, they would probably feel compelled to apologize to God for all the times he was mentioned.
Fortunately, all the work was recovered, and in the meantime January came to an end, but March was just around the corner. A race against time started, to finish the mix and making final adjustments. Like spinning wheels, equipped with burning ears, the 4 guys ran to listen to the record in the car, then back to the studio, then back to the car, then into the € 10 bluetooth speaker, then back to the studio, then the master process took place and then listened again in the car, then in the rehearsal room, again in the studio... a rather exhausting race, but all for a goal that they saw closer at every step.
At this point we are in March 2020 and the pandemic broke out in Italy and around the world.
The record was not completely finished yet, it was just a short distance away. The promotional part needed to be developed, it was necessary to start working on the videos for the first singles, but no one could move anymore except for proven needs …
Although all 4 thought that this was an evident and proven necessity, the situation put another stop to the project. 2020 just didn't seem to be the right year to release their record. Not even the calls to the Police station screaming "but we have to finish our record !!!" managed to find a do the trick to continue the teamwork. Patience, we must have patience and wait for better times. The tests and the project stopped. The only thing they managed to bring forward was the Cauterize video, which became their first single. Each of them recorded their parts at home, as if they were thousands of kilometers away. Until June they managed little to see each other and even less to play.
It was obvious that the release of the Album had to be postponed. They then decide to let the summer pass and wait for December for publication. In the meantime, not even the shadow of a live concert.
After the summer it seemed that the pandemic had given a respite to Europe, so they decided to get back preparing a live set... "maybe some club would reopen and there could be some opportunity to do a concert" said the 4 guys ... Obviously this hope also proved to be in vain...
At the end of August they released their first single, Cauterize. The first homemade video was ready and soon was also scheduled to be out too soon.
If concerts weren’t possible before March 2021, all that remained was to focus on social media. The method was simple: produce contents and publish... produce contents and publish... produce contents and publish... Pounding! Why? Well very simple, even this step was completely self-produced and self-managed. This time, however, without having any experience on the subject, so all that was left to experience it in some way, work hard, make mistakes and learn. Sooner or later something good would probably come up.
In November another single was released, "Little Fancies". This time the video was made with more freedom; in times of facemasks but not lockdowns. The result came out a shortly after and the 4 guys felt quite satisfied, but the ambition to perfection kept them awake at night. The third single, “Wasted” was released, this time the video had to be something that takes away that self-production taste. The curfew at 22:00 did not helped them, but by now they did not expect any kind of help from 2020, they adaped and went ahead with their heads down.
It is December 2020, the story is over and the games are done. On December 24th at midnight the album comes out. The "Wasted" video is almost ready ...
However, the 4 guys made a promise: "we must do more!"
Whatever happens, inside that record there is a piece of their life and their soul. The name they had chosen is probably a damnation because you can’t stop that search for knowledge and perfection.