After teasing us with a string of singles, Bonnie Trash are set to release their debut album ‘Malocchio’ later this month. Backseat Mafia put some questions to Emmalia and Sarafina Bortolon-Vettor to find out about their journey to releasing their debut album and what the future looks like.
Give us a potted history of the band
E &S: We’ve been playing and making music together since we were 12, recording our first EPs as teens, with 1 SM58. Our first outfit that eventually turned into an all female punk/metal/rock group was called, Red Rosary. It was our high school band and the drummer, Dana Bellamy is now our current live drummer for Bonnie Trash. In our university days, we played in a psych rock group for a few years with some good friends and made a couple records. In 2013, we wanted to go back to our roots and play heavier, darker music, and combine our love of horror. So, we formed Bonnie Trash.
We released our EP, Ezzelini’s Dead in 2017 which is about a cannibalistic medieval tyrant that ruled our family’s hometown in Italy. This sparked our curiosity and fascination with ancestral Italian folklore, the supernatural, and the real-life horror stories our Nonna Maria told us as kids.
Our debut album, Malocchio is a continuation of our Nonna’s stories. It comes out on Hand Drawn Dracula on October 28, 2022. We recorded the album with Josh Korody at Candle Recording– he’s a magnificent producer and engineer. It’s surreal to see it all unfolding.
Who inspired you to start making music
E: My Zio Lore, who has dedicated his life to the guitar. Also Sarafina. When she started playing the drums, it was an invitation for us to start making music.
S: I wanted to hangout with my sister and play heavy rock music, so I thought it was fitting to learn the drums so we could inevitably start a rock band.
And the one or maybe two records that inspired you artistically
E: Godspeed You! Black Emperor’s Yanqui U.X.O. changed the way that I approach sound and playing. It inspired me to slow down and extend my guitar voicing with layers. It makes space when it needs to and then hits heavy at the right time.
S: Joy Division’s, Unknown Pleasures and Black Sabbath’s, Black Sabbath. I adore the drums on both of these iconic records, and the lyrical content. They inspired me to play and record drums in a way where I could combine both heavy metal and post-punk sounds together. Vocally and lyrically, these records instilled my continued adoration for the macabre. Movies are also a huge inspiration when it comes to my music composition, especially horror films.
If you’re trying to explain whom you sound like to someone that’s never heard you, what do you say
E: Joy Division, The Smashing Pumpkins, and GYBE got together to play Black Sabbath songs.
Tell us about your new track
S: The latest track to be released off our debut album, Malocchio is “Silence Is A Killer.” It’s a love letter from a malocchio to the recipient. The malocchio has a hold on you, it becomes one with you. You are infatuated with the feeling of it all. It’s so weaved into your every thought and movement that you think, how can I break the curse? The malocchio tricks you, and haunts you to the bitter end.
We tracked the song at Candle Recording with Josh Korody in the summer of 2021. You’ll hear guitar, drum pad, vocals, and the feeling of impending doom.
Where can we get hold of it
E & S: All the classic, well-known streaming sites.
Tell us how you write
E: Sara and I write and compose all the music together. For the live show, we invite bandmates to fill in on drums and bass. I will usually start with a riff or a sound, then show it to Sara. Sara will write the vocal melodies and lyrics on top. Then we’ll workshop back and forth to create a composition that fits the specific theme or story of focus. It usually helps if we demo or record what we’re working on to give a larger breadth of feel and then we bring the piece to the band.
Tell us about your live show
S: Our live show features a full band. Emmalia on guitar, Sarafina on vocals, and our wonderful friends Dana Bellamy on the drums, and a rotating cast of our two favourite bass players, Alanna Gurr and Emma Howarth-Withers. Bonnie Trash as a live, full band sounds like the recordings, but heavier, louder, and haunting. Come see a show when we’re in a town near you.
What would be your dream gig
S: A dream gig would be to open up for a mega festival lineup of all of our favourite groups: The Smashing Pumpkins, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, My Bloody Valentine, Hole, and Refused. It would be a delight to open up for any of these legends.
E: In a dream venue? Middle of the desert at night.
What can we expect from you in the near future
E & S: Our debut album, Malocchio comes out on October 28th on Hand Drawn Dracula. We are aiming to come over to the UK and EU to play some dates next year, 2023.
Tell us your favourite records that’s rocking your headphones/tour bus/stereo
E & S:
Status/Non-Status – Surely Travel
Pantayo – Pantayo
Hole – Live Through This
John Carpenter – Anthology: Movie Themes (1974-1998)
Yoo Doo Right – A Murmur, Boundless to the East
The Jesus and Mary Chain – Darklands
Refused – The Shape Of Punk to Come
Praises – In This Year: Hierophant
Respire – Black Line
Find out more via the band’s Bandcamp
Preorder the album here