April 13, 2024

Interview with Neikka RPM: ‘Neikka RPM Is Only Complete When We’re Together With You’

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It is always something very special and confusing when doing an interview with artists you know a bit more personally. I can’t say we’re close friends but Rich- and Dominique Bova are two great persons I’m in touch with for years. So it’s not that easy making a fully objective review of people you know although it became really easy once I heard “Scorpion In The Hourglass”. The fifth full length opus released by the New-Yorker (USA) based duo is a heavy, bombastic, and ultra-danceable piece of Industrial/Techno/Electro stuff. Hard-hitting sequences carried by devastating drum sections plus Dom’s ultra-sensual but still ghost-like vocals on top. I’d a very interactive chat with ‘diva Dominique’.

(Courtesy by Inferno Sound Diaries)

Q: Hello Dominique! It’s been eleven years between your previous album “Chain Letters” and the new one “Scorpion In The Hourglass.” We missed you! 

Dominique: I missed you guys, too! Eleven years, wow, I honestly don’t think we noticed the time passing. 

Q: You’ve been doing remixes all this time, and you released the EP “Battle Scars” in 2017, but what took you so long between albums? 

Dominique: As you said, over the past few years, we were really active in the remix scene. Working with other artists, collaborating, being exposed to new ideas… It’s really something special to crossbreed with so many different bands. And that alchemy led to new sonic paths in our own sound. Our time on the remix front was truly a great experience to grow.

Q: Your sound has evolved, but still, it’s pretty easy to pick out a Neikka RPM remix.

Dominique: I think bands know what they can expect from us!

Q: So after all this time, how does it feel to have a new album out?

Dominique: So satisfying! It feels good to be back and, honestly, it’s both humbling and rewarding to still have this opportunity. The ability to release our music without any compromise, and then for it to be launched with the unwavering support of Alfa Matrix. It is still and will forever be an artist’s dream come true. 

Q: Talk to us about the album title “Scorpion In The Hourglass.” What is it all about? 

Dominique: I think of the album title as a primer, it creates the mood, and evokes a certain mystique. I think of it as a sort of warning sign, that you’re coming to ’the point of no return.’ The titles of all of our albums are chosen to set the stage for what you the listener is about to hear. 

Q: It’s also a reference to the New York underground club scene of the past, right?

Dominique: Yeah, that’s a nod to the sonic alchemy on this album. The huge bass and deafening beats pulsating through dark cavernous spaces filled with sweaty people completely lost in the moment, literally in a trance. That was the signature vibe of the NYC scene.

Q: The new songs are much darker and harder than before; especially the drum sections are overwhelming and bombastic. You’ve said it’s part of your never-ending quest to make an electronic band sound like a post-punk garage band. Tell us a bit more about the evolution in sound and this particular quest.

Dominique: We just love the raw gritty sound of stacked amps in a warehouse, with everything at full volume. I’m so impressed by so many artists and producers in the scene, with their mind-bending mixes, unbelievable fidelity, and sonic transparency, but it just isn’t us. A brutal mix with messy bass is more our brand.

Q: Speaking of a brand, Neikka RPM is one of those bands with a very own and distinguishable sound DNA. I mean, when listening to one of your songs or remixes, there’s a definite Neikka RPM stamp. Tell us a bit more about this sound and the production of your sexy, mysterious vocals.

Dominique: We definitely have a signature sound palette in addition to the vocals. Every one of our songs is heaping with whispers of submission, lust and seduction… and mixed with dominating beats just pumping through the veins of all of our songs. It’s a slinky ride. As Richard, my co-conspirator, points out, I’m sure most of you analog instrument connoisseurs will recognize the Juno 106 synth and the TR-909  drum machine in nearly all of our tracks. Both are workhorses and deliver shattering power. Our mixing board begs for mercy!

Q: And your vocals and lyrics, what are those whispers telling us?

Dominique: It’s completely up to the listener to decide. Everyone occasionally has that argument with a voice of temptation in their mind and it goes, ‘I shouldn’t do it… but I want to do it… I know I shouldn’t do it… I think I’m gonna do it.’ Or maybe it’s the voice whispering next to you after an intimate moment? A lost lover who reconnects, but only in your dreams? It’s the voice of the girl across the room that you made eye contact with… but now she’s gone? Maybe you can tell me?

Q: Oh! I think what you’re saying is that the listener’s imagination is the third member of Neikka RPM?  

Dominique: Yes, absolutely. Neikka RPM is only complete when we’re together with YOU.

Q: Okay, well after this interview, I’ll listen to one of your songs… and see what comes to mind.

Dominique: Are you flirting with me? 

Q: Heheh, well I think that’s the main point here. Your music… seduces its listeners. And this is without even mentioning the alluring photos and artwork that come with the whole Neikka RPM package.

Dominique: First, thank you! And again, we are so appreciative to have the opportunity to share the idea and concept of Neikka RPM.  

Q: So what are your 2023 plans for remixes, singles/EP, etc. And how do you see Neikka RPM’s long-term evolution? 

Dominique: There is no pause, Neikka RPM is still so hungry and on the hunt. We’re already working on a track for a cover song compilation and, I can’t believe it myself, but we already have the beginnings of five new tracks already up on the board. As far as evolution goes, it just flows… and we’ll see where inspiration takes us.

Q: Very cool, we can’t wait to hear it all. Thanks for the chat!

Dominique: Thank you for having me! 

author avatar
Inferno Sound Diaries
I have been working for over 30 years with Side-line as the main reviewer. My taste is eclectic, uncoventional and I prefer to look for the pearls, even if the bands are completely unknown, thus staying loyal to the Side-Line philosophy of nurturing new talents.

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