NAVIGATOR PROJECT is an Italian band based in Naples. The band was set up by Amir Sabljaković and joined by his son Daniel and Caroline Darko. They this year released the debut album “Follow The Light” on ScentAir Records, which is a successful mix between EBM, Electro-Pop and Electro-Wave music. The album features nine songs and will appeal for 80s lovers. NAVIGATOR PROJECT is a promising formation and I’m really wondering to see how this band will evolve.
(Courtesy by Inferno Sound Diaries)
Q: I think for most of the readers NAVIGATOR PROJECT will be a new name so can you briefly tell us a bit more about your music background and how this project saw the daylight?
AMIR: Navigator Project was born about 2 years ago. After several collaborations I decided to put something together that would totally reflect myself. I’m very inspired by the 80’s New-Wave, (Depeche Mode, Sisters of Mercy, Joy Division, Alphaville), but also some contemporary bands like Editors and White Lies.
Q: Amir, you’ve been involved with other music projects so what makes NAVIGATOR PROJECT different and maybe special to you? Did you’ve a specific sound in mind you wanted to accomplish?
AMIR: Surely the thing that makes this project special is the presence of my son Daniel who took care of the rhythmic part. I have never used schemes in composing, I have always been inspired by the reference bands trying to produce something original (which is very difficult these days).
Q: How did this debut album “Follow The Light” finally took shape? What did you keep in mind from the writing- and production process and what have been the main difficulties and challenges in the accomplishment of the album?
AMIR: In the realization of “Follow The Light” the decisive part were the special people who helped me. There were many difficulties. I have always had problems writing the lyrics and this time Caroline Darko (an integral part of the project now) came to my rescue. She immediately understood what I needed.
Dragan from X-MOUTH SYNDROME helped me with guitar arrangements and more. Last but not least, Mika Rossi put the final mark on the production.
Q: I experienced the songs as very diversified; from EBM influences to Dark-Wave arrangements to retro Electro-Pop. How do you explain this diversity and is there any specific genre you feel more comfortable with? Do you’ve already ideas in mind about the next album/work?
AMIR: Some songs were composed several years ago while I completed others during lockdown. That’s why each song seems to be in a different style. I prefer Electronics, but I don’t disdain guitars. We are already working on the second album. There is a lot of material to work on, but with the times we are living, we will have a lot of time working on it.
Q: You already mentioned Mika Rossi who co-produced the album? What has been his true impact in the production process and what did you eventually learn from him?
AMIR: I owe everything to Mika. In all honesty, everything I have learned over the years is thanks to him. Without his help and support I would never have been able to release this album. In addition to the musical collaboration we have a ten-year friendship.
Q: Reading the lyrics of the songs I got the impression the lyrical themes –which are mainly dark and existential, are really important. Can you tell us a bit more about it? What did you try to accentuate, maybe exorcize?
Caroline: Well, you’ve just got the point. My lyrics are so focused on an intimate perspective of the world, a sort of consideration on how the world is changed, and how much we’ve been influenced by this root-and-branch changing. How much this affected us. So, our interiority is in flux as well, and sometimes it is really difficult to accept it, and not being eaten by bitterness, distress and ourselves. It’s very hard to survive and ‘follow the light’ when we live in a darkened era and we would only change the timescale, but yet we can try; that’s the main core of our record. I tried to accentuate the existentialism of the human being.
At the beginning, Amir provided me some suggestions, and I just listened. The tracks spoke to me since the very first moment, and came out so naturally! I gave them life, sometimes through metaphorical- and dark keys. For example: “Spellbound” is based on the character of Susie Bannion in Luca Guadagnino’s “Suspiria”, which has an allegorical function in the song. “An Angel” is nearly related to a biblical and fantastical imagery to talk about inner struggles (the Shadows we feed on), or “Imago Noctis” -a poem of mine performed by me”, which is an ode to the Death (as opposed to the regained will to live in the last track, “Follow The Light”). The same dark existentialism attends in “What’s Left Of Us?” (the one track with melodies and lyrics wholly by my friend Amir), a more obsessive, psychedelic song written during the quarantine. The most existential and spiritual song is, without doubt, “In The Spiral”; deals with the fact that we should open our eyes, comprehend the sense of our life and enjoy it as long as we can because, no matter what we do, we live in a hurt, fake world, and we’ll keep being trapped in the illusion of hope (the ”Cemetery Of Despair”), as a limbo: a dog devouring its tail. So it is better to embrace and be brave to be Humans. We started with the abyss to reach, in the end, the light.