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scary red monster
An Interview With Nocturnal Me - March 2010
scary red monster

by Renata Leone

Nocturnal Me, Nocturnal Me interview, Dave Melillo, Dave Melillo interview, Jeff Czum, Jeff Czum interview, Mikey Lasaponara, Mikey Lasaponara interview, John Viavattine , John Viavattine interview,

Nocturnal Me
Nocturnal Me

As a band, Nocturnal Me has only existed since late summer of 2009. But if you've been wondering whatever happened to the guys in Cute Is What We Aim For (save for Shaant Hacikyan) when that band broke up, wonder no more. Almost immediately after CIWWAF disbanded, Jeff Czum (guitar), Dave Melillo (vocals) and Mike Lasaponara (drums), joined forces to create a new band, Nocturnal Me. (John "Tank" Viavattine became the band's bassist a few months later.) Mike remembers, "The three of us enjoyed playing together. And we thought if we're gonna move on from [Cute], it's gonna be the three of us because that's what we like doing."

Soon after their decision to move forward with Nocturnal Me, the songwriting adventure was underway. From their homes in different parts of the country, the bandmates sent riffs, lyrics, and vocal and instrumental tracks to each other via cyberspace. As Mike explains, "Generally, Jeff or Dave'll come up with a vocal or guitar line, then I add drums and Tank adds bass, and sooner or later it ends up being a song. "
Dave Melillo
Dave Melillo
Jeff Czum
Jeff Czum
Mike Lasaponara
Mike Lasaponara
John
John "Tank" Viavattine
The brand new band produced four songs they were pleased with and quickly put out an EP in December of 2009. Dave has described their musical style as "accessible aggressive rock, with an infusion of funk/soul/R&B." The tracks on the EP represent a range of musical styles, from rock to pop-punk to dance music. There's even an anthem.

Dave says, "Our main focus now is developing a sound. I donít believe things are done in the context of albums anymore. I'm hoping that with a succession of singles and just us playing together more we develop our sound." In keeping with this philosophy, Nocturnal Me's myspace page has been streaming additional tracks, That's Just Me and Smash It Up, which did not appear on the EP.

Jeff hopes to attract listeners by not "following in the footsteps of someone else." Dave adds to the sentiment by saying, "If you want to be a popular band you have to find a way to mix what people like with what you really want to do with yourself."

Having racked up years of experience playing with other bands or as a solo artist, the members of Nocturnal Me also want to be taken seriously as skilled instrumentalists. They hope to stand out as much for their live performances as for their records. Dave elaborates: "People depend on electronics, software, things that don't really exist. I feel we have enough talent in this band that we donít need to rely on that. We want to echo those digital sounds with real instruments."

It would be difficult to write the story of Nocturnal Me without mentioning Cute Is What We Aim For. While Jeff, Dave and Mike all did time with CIWWAF on tour and in the studio, of the three, only Jeff was a founding member of that band. He explains why he ultimately felt he had to move on. "I guess I just grew out of [it]. Me and Shaant grew apart over the years, and I just wasnít happy with what I was doing."

Nocturnal Me

Each of the band members have learned valuable lessons from their years in the music industry. Among the lessons Dave has learned is, "Don't expect anything or feel entitled to anything. Even the best musicians are on the street corner. It's very random. You have to be willing to work really hard and let everything develop the way it's supposed to."

With plans to tour during the summer of 2010, the boys of Nocturnal Me are excited to be bringing their act to new fans as well as old fans eager to hear new music. Dave says, "I feel like you have to play live to be taken seriously, even today. Every show we play is a chance to sharpen our chops a little more."

Back in 2007 when CIWWAF was a supporting act for Fall Out Boy's Young Wild Things tour, Dave and Jeff got a taste of what it was like to play for audiences numbering in the tens of thousands. Would Nocturnal Me like to headline a venue like Madison Square Garden someday? Jeff takes a realistic view: " It would be nice to get back there, but you can't worry about that, you'll drive yourself crazy. Just take it one day at a time. "

You can see the Nocturnal Me gallery here.

Visit Nocturnal Me at their website.

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