Sometimes, the songs that you loved when you were growing up come back to you, like these mini revelations. For me, I remember my mother doing the washing up, while I probably played on the floor at a very young age whilst on the radio played Joni Mitchells song ‘Both Sides now’. I happened upon it on a compilation album I picked up, the fantastic version by The Johnsons. I immediately recognised it, having never known or thought about it since, well, probably that point. In my mind, I like to think it was The Johnsons version, just because it’s so fantastic (go on, YouTube it) but it could have been any one of the dozens of versions of it that have been recorded.
Driving Mrs. Satan’s Giacomo Pedicini went one step further. In the midst of a hot summer the Naples native rediscovered some of the heavy metal songs he had loved earlier in his life, and had first inspired him to take up music. He enlisted two friends, Ernesto Nobili and Claudia Sorvillo to help him recreate some of these songs, and the trio set about their task with some vigour.
The first track they laid down, was quite a long way from Joni Mitchell, and my mother doing the washing up. It was Helloween’s I want out, a song that vocalist Claudia had never even heard before. They followed it up by recording ACDC’s Hells Bells, Black Sabbath’s never say die and Judas Priest’s Living after midnight.
What is most startling about Driving Mrs. Satan is their interpretations of the songs. As well as showing a deep understanding and insight into heavy metal, the quality of the original songs is maybe even accentuated by the bands frankly lovely, folk tinged indie pop that the group play. Claudia’s clear voice gives the songs this emotional and fragile quality, while underneath the tracks are expertly arranged, the strings and piano complementing Giacomo and Ernesto’s Guitar and Double Bass. After listening to some of the bands rough mixes, trust me, keep an eye out for an album, expected soon.
There are lots of ways of approaching and appreciating the songs that you grew up with. Driving Mrs. Satan sound to have got things just about perfect.