Melbourne after-dark pop darlings Ferla get personal

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Melbourne after-dark pop darlings Ferla get personal

Last month saw the release of Melbourne after-dark pop darlings FERLA’s new album It’s Personal. Clearly about all things personal, the album condenses a tumultuous year of Giuliano Ferla’s life into 39 minutes of music and lyrics. We chat to Giuliano Ferla ahead of their album tour this month.

Hey guys thanks for chatting to Forte mag! Congrats on the release of your debut album It’s Personal last month. How’s the response been since its release?
Good, I think. I’m trying not to pay too much attention. It can be a bit of a trap if you start focusing on the response too much.

The album is a clear indication of real emotions, depicting quite a mature approach to heartbreak. What was the process like in creating these songs? Was it a cathartic experience or more a creative endeavour?
The process was to do the work. I tried not to think too much about what was being created and instead just turn up to the page and do the job. Maybe it was cathartic? I think it was a way of processing my emotions, but mostly it was me turning up to work and making music

I imagine essentially condensing a year of your life into 50 minutes of music and lyrics for all to hear is a triumph in itself.
Thanks. In one of the pressers I say that it was like making grappa. That is, you get all the leftovers from making wine and then squeeze a little harder and out comes the most distilled liquid you can get. That’s what I was doing with this record.

Is It’s Personal written from an entirely different mindset to your first EP in 2017?
Not quite. It’s still me trying to make sense of the world and overthinking things and feeling a bunch.

Following on from that EP, were there any lessons that you learned or anything you took away from it that you could apply to this one?
The first release, Guilt Pop/Stay Posi was actually two EPs. They were both home recorded, one in 2016 the other in 2017. I was trying to teach myself about production and arrangement, but also I had no money for studio time. I had to make a couple of DIY records. Now that I think about it, I did it myself because I wanted a clear idea of sound and aesthetic before bringing on other creatives and collaborators. I wanted to make sure that I knew what this project was about before getting other people on board. This record, It’s Personal, was made in the studio with Rohan Sforcina and with all the band playing their instruments. It’s definitely a growth and progression.

Tell us a bit about the track ‘You Were There, Jim’, which seems to take on a different perspective to the rest of the album? Is there a story behind this one?
The story is in the song. I had a dream, and Jim Lawrie was there.

You’re celebrating with a debut headline tour, with some stops in regional towns like Ballarat and Castlemaine. What’s the best part about bringing your music to different towns?
Playing shows is an excellent time. That’s the best part. It’s been ages since I was on tour. I can’t wait.

What can audiences expect from Ferla in the live format? Do you have a favourite track to perform live?
At the moment ‘I’m Fine’ is sounding really good. People really connect with ‘Jim’ when we play that, but we’ve been playing it for a while so it might be time to give it a little rest.

What are the plans for the rest of the year?
Hopefully back in the studio soon. Next record is about 70% done. Will be good to start making with the band again.

Catch Ferla at The Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine – May 18, Karova Lounge, Ballarat – May 23 and The Tote, Melbourne – May 24.

Photo by Kalindy Williams