Spontaneous nights out are, unequivocally, the best of them all. A couple of cold ones in a beer garden of a summer’s afternoon quietly, unassumingly leading into a blur of frivolity and many, many more pints. Before you know it, you’re walking home at 5am, the sun rising and you’re in the blissful limbo of the pre-hangover vapour – stumbling and not wanting it to end.
It’s those sort of nights in the summer that, even though they come few and far between, habit themselves deeply in your mind – vivid, tangible memories of levity that conjure a state of nostalgia that feel almost cinematic in its blissfulness – exuberant notions of aspiration in the very moment.
With new single ‘At All Hours’, London-based artist Francesco Perini – under his sultry moniker PEARZ – imbues all the sentiment and desire of those unprompted evenings with his evocative soundtrack. A breezy embodiment of both the early hours after a long night out and the twilight of summer, Perini imbues his music with as much melancholic presence as he does lingering recollection. Sweeping, yearning brass washes ashore as neon synths light up the atmosphere, all underplayed by a delectable groove – as provocative as it is a relief.
Perini captures the anticipation for opportunity in the city with the solace and solitude of a stroll by the coast – a pertinent collaboration that at this time we seek the most from, at both vantage points.
With ‘At All Hours’ there’s a real sense of the immediate nostalgia for those fleeting moments and an insecurity about the future as fall and the new day arrives. Do you find creativity from such vivid, physical moments?
Sometimes I do, and I guess that was especially true for this period, when I had more time to reflect. It is easy to loose yourself in nostalgic moments, and this could also hinder your creativity if you let it get too big. I tend to feel down after those moments of change and it might take a while to accept and move on, which can lead me to procrastinate. I’m still trying to learn how to accept the course of events and making music to express those feeling was definitely the right choice at the right moment for me. This Ep was actually the first real attempt to put those emotions into a personal music project.
Such spontaneous nights out are always the better ones – there’s a real romance to them and I feel you illustrate it beautifully within your music. Do you feel they conjure a sense of aspiration, or simple comfort?
Definitely a simple comfort. I think those nights definitely leave their mark in our lives because they arrive when we least expect them. For me I usually experience them after I finally get out from a moment of apathy, depression or simply low self esteem. They are like the sun that comes out after a long rainy day.
There’s a lot of different cultures imbued in your work – the penchant for Italian cinema, the city pop of Tokyo and the sultry tones of Californian yacht-pop – was it purposeful to find a way of navigating all these different moods?
I think because this is my first personal collection of songs, there is a mix of sounds and places I’ve lived over the last few years. I’ve been living in London for the last 7 years and I could feel that in my approach of writing something diy in my bedroom like lots of musicians are doing in this town. Over the last few years I’ve dug deeper into my past, and so that lead me towards listening to certain years of music in Italy. There is some music that I used to think was cheesy just because it was in heavy rotation on the radio back then. I also re-discovered the magnificent works of composers for movies and hundreds of soundtracks. I also lived in Los Angeles when I was in my early 20s and although I loved the city, it was the first time I felt a detachment from reality and a sense of isolation at night, very similar to the one I felt over the lockdown. So I could say that the EP blends all the cities which I lived in, and my nightlife and experiences there.
There’s a real yearning melancholia rooted in your music – an exploration of nostalgia while evoking a pertinent contemporary disposition. Do you feel this is a personal journey in finding your place through your work?
I do. I’ve always carried a huge sense of nostalgia mixed with dreams and hopes. It’s hard to describe the feeling, but it comforts me most of the time, however it can be quite exhausting. Music, like all art, is a perfect way to channel those emotions. I’m still trying to find my place but I believe with this EP, I have found my footing.
‘Nocturnal’ as a whole is informed by isolation and the time we’ve spent this year in solitude. Do you feel it was important to be reflective through creativity to inspire stability?
Isolation for me was a huge wake up call somehow. It smashed me down at first, I basically couldn’t fall asleep before sunrise and I struggled to find a sense of my days until I started to work on something. That slowly became my routine and I forced my self to write and write and write, taking in the good and the bad. I believe in the power of art and music, that’s why I know it’s important now more than ever to keep creating and sharing what we make. We all need to feel alive and to feel part of something again.
‘At All Hours’ is out now via Annibale Records. ‘Nocturnal’, PEARZ’ debut EP, is released in October.
Words: Ross Jones Photography: Alessandro Gianferrara