About Indigo Sky:
Alnilam’s debut album contains ten original songs Pinto wrote building upon Turkish composer Serhat Arslan’s instrumental pieces. Ranging from melancholic to inspirational, the songs have been attracting an organic base of passionate fans from all over the world, especially on Soundcloud, where two tracks, Alnilam and Wish, made the indie rock trending list.
Review Fix: How was “A Song For the Wind” written?
Elena Pinto: A Song For the Wind was one of the first 3 songs. I wrote it in 2011. It was originally called Here and Now. The lyrics were almost the same but the melody was completely different. Here and Now was basically my way of coping with missing a close friend who died 2 weeks before I moved to California. I wrote it with a box of tissues next to me, just poured all my grief into the lyrics. I cried so much writing it that I started to think it might turn out to be a good song.
After I met Serhat Arslan, I adapted the lyrics to fit one of his instrumental pieces titled A Song For the Wind. I came up with a new vocal melody for it. Several, in fact… I was still working on my sketches when Serhat heard one of them by accident on Soundcloud. (I saved it as a public track, instead of private, by mistake.) He wrote, “this is awesome,” on it, so that version became A Song For the Wind.
Review Fix: What’s your creative process like?
Pinto: I write down words, phrases, images, colors, etc. that come to mind while listening to an instrumental over and over. I work on my laptop so I can move words around easily. I write about people or situations that move me… Even if most of a song ends up being fiction, I try to include bits of truth, or things that have special meaning for me. The vocal melodies usually take shape at the same time as the lyrics, but sometimes before or after. I record my sketches with a program called Audacity and post them privately on Soundcloud. The best ones get recorded at Arimaka, a great studio in Los Feliz, CA.
Review Fix: Who inspires you the most musically?
Pinto: David Bowie has been my biggest inspiration since high school. I’m also very fond of Leonard Cohen, Radiohead, Wim Mertens, Mike Oldfield, The Smiths, Cat Stevens, Simon & Garfunkel, The Psychedelic Furs, REM, Blondie, Allison Moyet, Sinead O’ Connor, Kate Bush, Peter Gabriel, old Genesis, Pink Floyd, Tangerine Dream, Coldplay, Enya, Talking Heads, New Order, Alphaville, Lou Reed, Elvis Costello, Natalie Merchant, Tom Petty, The Thrashcan Sinatras, Keane, Blonde Redhead, Yann Tiersen, Deep Forest, Fleetwood Mac, The Counting Crows, James, The Killers… and many, many more…
Review Fix: How do you want Indigo Sky to be remembered?
Pinto: Indigo Sky is my contribution to the world. In some ways, it is like a physical manifestation of the best part of me. It took a long, sustained effort. This album is the sum of all my life choices and experiences so far plus a heavy dose of determination. Hopefully it will be remembered as original and beautiful. It is an honor to be part of what Leonard Cohen called “the army of song.”
Review Fix: How do you want your music to affect people?
Pinto: I would like them to enjoy my music however they want. I really treasure the songs that have been the soundtrack of my life so it would be awesome for my songs to be on someone else’s soundtrack. I hope they carry a positive message, and more importantly, some good energy. I think music is uniquely capable of bringing about change, not only because it is a universal language, but because it is energy, it is vibration. All notes are beautiful vibration, and when arranged in certain combinations they can be very powerful. And then you have individuals adding to the energy of a song by listening to it or, even better, by singing along to it. Then multiply this… like at a concert… If I could be really ambitious I would like my music to be healing. Some have said they find it soothing so I think I’m on the right track.
Review Fix: What are your goals for the rest of the year?
Pinto: I hope to release at least 2 more videos: Wish and Alnilam. The video for Wish is almost done and will come out soon. I’m filming the video forAlnilam with a cinematographer named Gregory L. Hines. He wrote me saying he wanted to make a video for one of our songs as a personal project. We are going to film Alnilam in a few weeks, on location, at Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes National Wildlife Refuge. I’m looking forward to working with him. So far our videos have been very informal productions. http://www.gregorylhines.com/new-projects-coming/#more-381.
Review Fix: What’s next?
Pinto: Alnilam is going through some changes… We are currently auditioning some new band members and hope to perform again very soon. We are thinking about traveling outside L.A. for the first time later this year, but it is too early to talk about that. I’ve been writing new songs and some of them have different co-writers. I’m exploring a variety of sounds and directions. It’s all pretty exciting. I’m trying to keep up with the pace which seems to be speeding up.