Who Are The Memories?
Bonjour, ma petite coquette!
The Memories: a biography of sorts
By: Louis Martin
In May 2003, my girlfriend had just broken up with me, and I was in the middle of a cross-country American excursion. Broken-hearted, I flew from France (my native country) to New York. My destination was San Francisco, where an old college friend had settled. Chicago was my halfway point, and I arrived there anxious and miserable.
All I knew about Chicago involved gangsters and Michael Jordan. The Windy City was to be my stopping point for a single night. That evening, I had some time to kill, so I set out to locate the spot of the infamous St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. I wandered around Lincoln Park for hours. Couldn’t find the damn place. I was frustrated, tired, and needed a drink. I shuffled into the first bar I could find and ordered my vodka martini. The Pixies’ “Where is My Mind?” played over the loudspeakers. Wait, that’s not a recording – that’s a live band. A band was playing in the next room. I paid for the martini, tipped the bartender, and walked in to check them out.
The band was a four-piece. On the bass drum, in fancy writing, was written “The Memories.” The first thing that struck me about the band was their loudness. The second thing was that they were snappy dressers. I lingered.
There were, I kid you not, girls (barely legal) in the front row gazing into the eyes of the lead singer, Eli. Occasionally, he winked their way, but the mike proved to be his true mistress. Joe, the lead guitarist, was either inebriated, silly, or both. He did a chicken walk. Several times. The bassist, Eric, hammed it up to the crowd, jumping around the stage, posing with his bass. Brian, the drummer, was clearly a disciple of Animal from the Muppets. It’s a shame he smashed his drum kit at the end of the set.
I never made it to the West coast. Flew back to Paris from Omaha. The band sent me their EP the next summer. The songs were infectious, the production crisp. I told them to record a full-length album. I’m still waiting, Memories!
All the best,
Paris New Music Journal
Eli Nicolosi – Vocals / Guitar
Hometown: – Rockford, Illinois / Mendota, Illinois
Equipment used: Fender Stratocaster w/ Texmex pickups, Marshall Amp MG100; Big Muff, Danelectro Daddy-O pedals.
Favorite bands/artists: The Beatles, The Pixies, Nirvana, R.E.M, Blur, Weezer.
Favorite albums: Magical Mystery Tour (The Beatles), Nevermind (Nirvana), Parklife (Blur).
Eric D’Asto – Bass / Vocals / Keyboard
Hometown: Oak Park, Illinois
Equipment used: Epiphone Thunderbird and Fender P-Bass through Gallien-Krueger Backline 600 and Hartke 200W amps and Hartke speaker cabinets. Boss Tuner and Bass Chorus, Digitech Digital Delay and Bass Overdrive, MXR Phase 90, and Fender flanger pedals.
Favorite bands/artists: Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, The Cure, The Smiths, New Order/Joy Division, They Might Be Giants, Peter Gabriel era Genesis
Favorite albums: God Fodder (Ned’s Atomic Dustbin), Revolver (The Beatles), Odessy and Oracle (The Zombies) Automatic for the People (R.E.M.) and Meantime (Helmet)
Brian VandenBos – Drums
Equipment used: Yamaha Stage Custom with Sabian and Zildjian cymbals.
Years of experience: Ten.
Favorite bands/artists: The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Pavement, the Velvet Underground, Wilco, Caviar.
Favorite albums: The Beatles (The Beatles), In the Aeroplane Over the Sea (Neutral Milk Hotel), Blonde on Blond (Bob Dylan), Odyssey & Oracle (The Zombies), The Village Green Preservation Society (The Kinks).
Joe Di Zillo – Lead Guitar, keyboard, and sometimes even drums
Hometown: Winfield, Illinois
Equipment used: 1968 Ludwig set with Zildjian cymbals.
Years of experience: Eleven.
Favorite bands/artists: The Beatles, Chuck Berry, Led Zeppelin, Radiohead.
Favorite albums: The Beatles (Abbey Road), Houses of The Holy (Led Zeppelin), Innervisions (Stevie Wonder)