When Marco left the states last winter to spend five months in Brazil, we knew we'd miss him dearly. But we also knew that the wait would be worth it, that he'd eventually come back with myriad anecdotes about his party time in Rio. When he did, he had a captive, mildly confused audience. He didn't disappoint. He never does. What a time he apparently had! We won't bore you with all of the details, in part because the logistics of most of them were extremely difficult for us to understand. Besides which, you should seize an opportunity to buy Marco a Stoli-Campari and have him tell you himself. But one in particular did grasp our imagination in the way it degenerated from a moment of continued leisure into a convoluted tale of greed, theft, and failed attempts at retribution. Naturally, we were inclined to immortalize Marco's misfortune in song. Fortunately, he graciously agreed to, once again, share in our desire to turn his life into art.
That's how we arrived to the concept of "Scorpions and Brazil," a bossa nova that attempts to blend the aura of a man on an extended vacation in Brazil with the pitfalls involved with that same man's hedonistic pursuance of pleasure while on said vacation. Accordingly, you'll notice that our new track takes a lighthearted vocal melody through a more sinister and discordant refrain than you might be used to from a traditional bossa tune.
In regards to the narrative, try and follow along as Marco takes you on a frantic tour of the favellas and cabanas of Rio. For the few mentions of a banana, we urge you to use your imagination. We hope you enjoy this sliver of Marco's life. Univore loves you.
Join us on a brief, melodic tour of innocuous indulgences. Wear the costume. Smell the flower. Pop the watery balloon. Ignite the firework. Why? Because impermanence makes it vital that we take advantage of every opportunity to indulge in our fantasies. Because you must confront your inevitable physical demise, and know that you will experience the spectrum of pleasures before that moment arrives. Because you're capable of understanding true joy.
"Retrograde Motion," is a montage of footage plucked directly from what Univore's childhood could well have been if not for the cosmic result of their native planet's motion against the trajectories of other bodies within the same system, which rendered Univore complete different beings in a completely different time than what is exhibited in this footage.
1999 A.D. (1967) (Public Domain)
Gateways To the Mind (1958) (Public Domain)
Nuclear Explosion (Unknown date) (Public Domain)
We were promised the sun. Repeatedly. Then, the assholes who'd promised it to us told us to go eat shit. They said there was no more sun. So we took it. Now, the sun is ours and we promise it to you. Take it with you on your holiday. Take the sun to the beach. Show it some white sand. Show the sun all the sculpted faces. Put a hat on the sun. By it a rum drink. Show the sun how to stroke the water and make the flowers move. Enjoy the sun..
There are benefits to knowing people who know people who own more than one boat and who are willing to take young strangers out for a Sunday afternoon putzing around Lake Michigan. The viewer will soon reap those benefits. Please enjoy our video for Angela, a song you are more than familiar with, as it appears on our latest album, Love Letters.
The dance performed throughout is called the PB&J and was invented by Univore after years of development. The bringing together of hands that you see is not a mere clap but a miming of the act of placing a slice of bread atop another slice of bread that is smothered with peanut butter and jelly. Please contact us if you are interested in a more concise breakdown of the original steps than this video can provide.
The glorious day depicted in this video was provided by the sun. The blue water was provided by the prehistoric Lake Chicago, which resulted from the retreat of the Wisconsin Glacier during the Pleistocene, the last period of glaciation. The overall sense of fun was provided by youth.
“Champagne Taste” comes from a supposedly true story Marco told Univore one rainy March day while listening to the instrumentation that would eventually turn into the song “Champagne Taste.” Although the lyrics are spoken in the first person by Marco, this incident actually involved Marco’s close friend from pastoral Italy, Giovanni. Marco wasn’t even there when it happened. In fact, Marco has never even tasted champagne, nor the crack cocaine he references in the song. (The beverage consumed in the music video is store brand sparkling apple juice.) Marco’s vices never (rarely) exceed the recreational; Campari, vodka, and soda is his occasional poison, and even a single one of these he will milk for over five hours in any given night. A cigarette after an especially heated ping pong match may also be involved. But this is all beside the point.
"I Dream the Video" is a surreal journey through the dream paths of a man, played by Marco Casale, who is either convinced he dreams in video or actually creates videos through his dreams. He is conflicted on whether to embrace this characteristic or to consider it his affliction. He may suffer from a hyper-sensory condition that is part narcolepsy, part insanity, and part something else entirely. Through his waltz-like dream-state adventures he discovers several answers, one of which is the real answer. The night of Saturday April 20th, 2013 saw the premiere of Univore’s short film “I Dream the Video” at Heaven Gallery as part of the 2013 Chicago International Music and Movies Festival.
With the ceaseless demand for vampire-themed media, not limited to the Halloween season, vampires have become firmly established as a dominant force in popular culture. One critic recently stated, "You aren't an artist until you've created an entirely new manifestation of the vampire," a notion Univore initially scoffed at. But after consulting with our stakeholders, we considered it a challenge. Then we decided to rise to it. Univore does not appreciate being left out of anything.
There was a bit of trouble last summer for Marco Casale. He got into some hot water with men too cowardly to confront him face-to-face, men schooled only in the childish art of sabotage. They have since either disappeared from Marco's fair city or come to enough sense to cease their cheap tactics. We'll assume the latter and we'll assume it came shortly after first hearing this song.
The identities of the zeros who dismantled Marco's bicycle last summer remain unknown. And anyway, who would want to know such ilk? What is certain is that for a three-week period they terrorized Marco, destroying his only mode of transportation, barraging him with cryptic phone calls, and contaminating his dreams. When we concede identities, we logically move on to the questions of why they did this and where they could have come from. You might also ask: How could they not have known that Marco has the eyes of the cat? Any idiot in the world knows that. But we won't dwell on that here.
The ping pong caves of the west side of Chicago can be unforgiving dens of humiliation. Careers are made and broken, as are spirits and wrists. We can only speculate that the targets of Marco's vendetta were a group of young white males notorious for aggressively seeking competition for money at any bar providing table tennis in the West Town neighborhood. These men are known not only for strategically selecting inferior opponents, whom they then rout repeatedly in games to 21, they are also known for unrelenting flirtatiousness with local women and for giving miniscule tips when served drinks.
The night on which the vendetta was born, Marco was quietly minding his own business after a friendly match with a fellow ping pong enthusiast when the men in question entered and talked their way into a best of seven series against Marco, immediately before which, their leader claimed, "We are going to destroy you. I just hope you can manage a few points so we don't fall asleep mid-match. Who knows, maybe they will discover you in a thousand years as a (expletive) fossil. Good night, whatever your name is."
"Why do you say these mean things to me? We are all brothers in table tennis. You act very macho. Besides, I am highly skilled in this game. I will play better than you expect me to."
"Shut your face and hurry up. Let's get this over with so that we can go make advances on the more attractive girls who frequent this hell hole."
Marco said no more, instead electing to take the first serve the bully offered him in false politeness. Marco won four games straight, sweeping him. In four games, the worm managed six points. Furious, he stormed into the center of the tavern and announced, "Marco Casale is a slimy cheat and he will pay," then made a slashing motion with his pointer finger while giving Marco an icy stare. Then stomped out onto the streets.
Then the trouble started, culminating in the disappearance of Marco's bicycle seat and the slashing of his tires. Shortly thereafter, Univore went into the studio to record "Vendetta." Funny, we haven't seen our bully since..
Univore wrote "Rochette Rochette" after accidentally walking in on Marco watching the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics on television. Moments before, he had just been so moved by the bronze-winning performance of Canadian figure skater Joannie Rochette that he was reduced to tears. Embarrassed, he had to put down his glass of Riesling and wipe vigorously at his eyes, attributing the obvious fluids pouring from them to "something" in his tear ducts. Univore promptly ridiculed him for this pathetic display, to which he informed them that Rochette's mother had passed away of a heart attack only a few days earlier and that she had dedicated her routine to her mother's memory. Given their knowledge of Marco's affinity for his own mother, along with the realization that they both love and appreciate their respective mothers, Univore was instantaneously remorseful. They each apologized and slunk into shame, emerging shortly thereafter to draft this song. "Rochette Rochette" is Univore's interpretation of Marco's reaction to watching Joannie Rochette's performance, as well as a general homage to the art of figure skating, Marco's favorite winter game, the one in which he takes the most solace. It is important for the listener and viewer to understand that neither the song nor the accompanying video are designed to make light of the passing of Thérèse Rochette and that any accusation to this point is a misinterpretation. These are merely depictions of a man invested in a sporting event. Univore plans to interpret male reactions to several more famous sporting moments over subsequent releases, including that of a western Pennsylvania steel worker to Bill Mazeroski's home run off Yankee pitcher Ralph Terry to end Game 7 of the 1960 World Series and that of a six-year-old boy in west Akron to Earnest Byner's fumble on the Denver Broncos' three yard line to lose the 1987 AFC Championship game for the Cleveland Browns.
Doctor Dane is a fungal botanist (mycologist) who’s been sent by the Celestial Medicine Corporation to a distant star system. His mission is too find spore proteins capable of reigniting human procreation in the wake of an enormous catastrophe resulting from a sharp decline in air quality.After repeated transmissions with his computer contact Holly 9, he learns that one of the many specimens he’s already sent back to Earth has resulted in the cure for the universal impotence that was threatening to end the human race and that it was already in mass production. Ecstatic, Doctor Dane prepares for his heroic voyage back home, only to learn that the corporation that sent him away has other plans for him.Specimen 318 premiered on May 1, 2014 at the Hideout Inn in Chicago as part of the 6th Chicago International Music and Movies Fest.
Marco strictly adheres to the premonitions he harvests from dreams and visions. It is a defense mechanism that keeps him alive. Last summer he dreamt he contracted flesh eating bacteria from a spider bite at a picnic in San Antonio, Texas only three days before a scheduled flight to that same location. He promptly canceled the flight and avoided the bacteria. The verses of this song deal with two such premonitions. The first is an abstract of a nightmare Marco had weeks before he was to accompany NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter mission in October 2008 as part of the Lunar Precursor Robotic Program to explore the feasibility of human spaceflight missions to the moon. He withdrew from the mission, and the launch was delayed until June 2009, by which time NASA had realized the unnecessary danger of putting a human on what was originally designed as a solely robotic reconnaissance. The second tells of a dream he had before climbing Mount Shasta in August of 2006. Although terrified by the sight of his body plummeting down the side of the mountain while reaching for trees that were only
matchsticks, he defied its warning and proceeded with the climb. “It was incredible,” he said of Shasta. “I am glad that I was unwilling to let a nightmare prevent me from reaching 14,179 feet.”
In January of 2011, Univore recorded Betsy as part of the Love Letters sessions. Love Letters was released in March of 2011. A year and a half later, we're here to deliver Betsy's music video. You might be wondering what took us so long.
First, a bit about the song itself: Betsy is half-fiction, the simple but tragic story of a group of young people visiting the beach as told by a male friend of Betsy's who, because of their collective youth and indestructibility, is not concerned in the least about the disappearance of one of their own until he and they realize that the ocean she loves has swallowed her.
Betsy is also partially inspired by the tragic 1985 drowning in a shallow bay near the Las Hadas Resort in Manzanillo, Mexico of Carol Wayne, the TV actress and guest on several Johnny Carson skits in the 60's and 70's.
About the video: Betsy was filmed primarily on the Amalfi Coast of southwest Italy, specifically near the small town of Praiano in the province of Salerno. Having shot the majority of our videos in Chicago, Univore decided that it could not settle for the waters of any of the Great Lakes for this. Instead, we required the Tyrrhenian Sea and Praiano, whose name derives from praia, or beach, from the Latin pelagium, meaning "open sea." Due to scheduling conflicts in 2011, we were not able to visit the Amalfi until the summer of 2012, thus delaying our release of the video by a year. Shots of the Tyrrhenian are supplemented with those of Lake Yellowstone in southwestern Wisconsin, where Univore visited on the third week of October to behold its spectrum of burning fall foliage.
“Ghost of Me” was born from a brief spasm of pain Marco experienced when a young woman let him go upon arriving to the United States from a trip to Guatemala in the early Spring. Things weren’t the same when she came back. She had grown as a person. Her travels had seasoned and enlightened her, rendering her no longer compatible with him. When she returned, he crowded her, asked her for time that she could not lend. They argued, she accused him of clinging. Poor sod. The melody and chord progression arose from the shallow depression that followed, fueled by vodka and want of calories from neglected meals. But he has since healed and is no longer concerned with the transparent dealings of someone who has since proven to be a disingenuous, tactless flake. Several other adjectives could be used to describe the young woman, but who would want to denigrate our English language by applying it to entities so unworthy of its syllables? Marco is outright embarrassed that he once aspired to spend more time with her, let alone wasted intellect on such a lamentation over losing her. But no matter what he says, Univore encourages you to enjoy the musical elements of this track.
The first track from the album Casale Project, the debut album by Univore, now availbable for download on itunes, Amazon, Emusic and other online retailers. Univore is Nicholas Flandro and David Bachmann. Univore partnered with artist Marco Casale to create this album. Grilled Asparagus. Visit Univore. com to learn more about Univore and their ideas and interests. Hello Kitty. Japanese music. love. arts. beauty.
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