They have a catchy logo, a nicely designed and interesting blog about indie music, they’re 5 girls and you can often spot them DJing at the most hipster-friendly venues of Rome, like Circolo degli Artisti and Le Mura. Sometimes, they also organize concerts where they invite some of the most interesting upcoming Italian bands. It’s hard to see what could go wrong with Frigopop, a name you’ve probably heard of if you live in Rome and are involved in the local music scene.

Last year, Frigopop also started to organize the Italian version of the otherwise international event called PopFest. Their version was a 2-day festival that took place in Rome with a line-up that included A Classic Education and My Awesome Mixtape, two Italian bands that have recently been touring abroad and receiving some serious international recognition. Needless to say, the festival turned out to be a big success (yes, I was there and witnessed it!), and they’re doing it again this year, on the 18th and 19th of March in not only one but two venues, Mads and Le Mura, which are one in front of the other, in San Lorenzo. The second day of the festival is also part of another festival, Maledetta Primavera, organised by Rockit, which takes place in different venues all around Italy (and not only) on the 19th of March. At frestyl we’ve partnered with Rockit to promote Maledetta Primavera, and we’re pretty excited about this collaboration. More posts to come on that!

But for now, back to Frigopop. We wanted to know about these girls so we decided to interview one of them, Nur, to find out more about what they are up to. Our last bi-lingual interview (with La Tua Fottuta Musica Alternativa) was a big success, so we’re publishing this one both in English and Italian:

Your name is quite well know in the Roman indie scene, can you tell us a bit about your “all girls” project, Frigopop?

We’re five girls, born and raised in Rome. We’re all around our twenties and three years ago we decided to form a collective in order to promote pop music in the city. At the time there weren’t many nice club nights so we decided to start one! Besides that, we started running a webzine, where you can find reviews, interviews and mixtapes, and we started djing too!

I can see on your blog that you’re keeping a close eye on the international indie music scene. Can you draw some quick comparisons between the Italian and the international indie scene?

Well, we’ve always lived and worked in Italy, so our comparison can be based just on vague impressions… anyway, the main differences I can get are two: firstly, outside of Italy there is a much broader public going to concerts, listening & buying records, and partecipating in various music activities and entertainment. This leads to a wider choice, both for music lovers (and users, in general) and people who organize events. Secondly, maybe there is a more genuine approach to music. This can depend perhaps on people’s education and how society in general considers music and culture. In Italy, it’s just a very unpopular hobby.

A few weeks ago we interviewed the guys from La Tua Fottuta Musica Alternativa and I’ve heard that you’ll be working together on some events in the coming months. Can you give us a sneak-peak of this joint project?

Yes! We decided to join forces for a concert. The band is called L’Officina della Camomilla, it’s a brand new act and we love them! The concert will take place on Saturday 26th March 2011, at Dal Verme club!

Last year you’ve organised the Italian version of a music festival called RomaPopFest, which has quickly become a point of reference for a lot of music fans here in Rome. What made you start this festival and what’s the philosophy behind it?

We just tought it was a nice thing to do. We love (indie)pop music, there wasn’t nothing like this in Italy, so we decided to be the first! So basically what made us start was just the will to listen to some good pop music in Rome, nothing more nothing less. We have no particular philosophy: we just want to have fun and bring awesome bands to play in our city.

Catchy poster for the 2011 version of RomaPopFest

Having fun, listening to good music, and sharing these two activities seems, then, the main philosophy behind Frigopop. And apparently it works, and is contagious! As a person who’s spent a considerable amount of time outside of Italy and has been quite involved as a music fan in the local concert scene (mainly in Dublin, London and Los Angeles), I do agree with Nur on what she was saying about Italy not supporting the culture and mentality of going to small/medium concerts as an everyday activity, as it happens more often abroad. However, I can see from the little time I’ve been living in Rome (oh gosh but it’s been almost 2 years actually!) that more and more people attend concerts, at least the ones I go to, and they’re definitely not the big and expensive ones! Also, it’s true that it might be hard for organizations like Frigopop to enter the live music space and actually contributing to it in this socio-cultural environment, but it’s exactly thanks to them and other active event organizers like LTFMA that the music scene in Italy is slowly getting better, and this process is coming directly from the local parties, and the live music acts. So, I want to keep a positive attitude towards this.

For the RomaPopFest 2011 Frigopop invited some bands that I’ve already seen (e.g. I Quartieri and Mamavegas) and others that I’m very curious to see (e.g. Virginiana Miller, Non Voglio Che Clara and Young Wrists). It’ll be fun to jump back and forth between Mads and Le Mura (which are literally opposite to each other).

If you want to follow the girls from Frigopop and their activities you can find plenty of resources online as they’re pretty good with the interwebs. You can find them on frestyl and get the news about their RomaPopFest, which also happens to have its own website, Facebook Page, Twitter account and bandcamp to check out all the bands.

Young Wrists perform at Maps

Ed ecco la versione italiana della nostra intervista con Nur di Frigopop, un’organizzazione di ragazze che animano da qualche anno le serate romane facendo dj-set, organizzando concerti e festival come il RomaPopFest e facendo da trend setter musicali attraverso il loro blog. Così si raccontano.

Il vostro nome circola ormai da qualche tempo negli ambienti indie romani, ci raccontate com’è nato il vostro progetto tutto al femminile?

Siamo cinque ragazze, nate e cresciute a Roma. Siamo tutte sulla ventina, e tre anni fa abbiam deciso di formare un collettivo per spingere un po’ la musica pop in città. Al tempo non c’erano molte serate carine, così abbiam deciso di iniziarne noi una! A parte questo, abbiamo fondato una webzine dove si possono trovare recensioni, interviste e compile, e poi abbiamo anche iniziato a metter dischi in giro!

Grazie al vostro blog avete anche un occhio sulla musica indie a 360°. Come descrivereste l’attuale panorama italiano a confronto di quello internazionale?

Be’, abbiam sempre vissuto e lavorato in Italia, quindi la nostra comparazione può essere basata per forza di cose solo su impressioni vaghe…comunque, le principali differenze che riesco a cogliere sono due: la prima, è che nel resto del mondo c’è un pubblico molto più ampio che va ai concerti, ascolta e compra musica, e partecipa a varie attività connesse con il mondo musicale. Questo fà sì che ci sia una scelta molto più ampia, sia per gli utenti/amanti della musica, sia per gli organizzatori. La seconda, è che fuori dall’Italia noto un approccio più genuino alla musica. Questo forse dipende, in generale, dall’educazione di un popolo, e da come una società considera la musica e la cultura. In Italia, sono solo degli hobby molto impopolari.

Qualche settimana fa abbiamo incontrato i ragazzi di La Tua Fottuta Musica Alternativa e voci di corridoio danno una vostra collaborazione ormai per certa. Ci anticipate qualcosa?

Sì! Abbiam deciso di unire le forze per un concerto. La band si chiama L’Officina della Camomilla, è un nuovissimo gruppo e li amiamo! Il concerto si svolgerà Sabato 26 Marzo 2011 al club Dal Verme!

L’anno scorso avete organizzato un evento che è subito diventato un punto di riferimento per la musica emergente a Roma, il RomaPopFest. Quest’anno replicate l’esperienza il 18 e 19 Marzo. Ci dite qual’è la filosofia che si cela dietro questo festival?

Pensavamo solo che fosse una buona cosa da fare. Amiamo la musica (indie)pop, non c’era nulla del genere in Italia, così abbiam pensato di esser le prime! Quindi in pratica abbiamo iniziato perché avevamo voglia di ascoltare del buon pop a Roma, niente di più e niente di meno. Non abbiamo una filosofia particolare: vogliamo solo divertirci e portare band fantastiche in città.

Invitiamo quindi tutti a celebrare questa primavera musicale con Frigopop al RomaPopFest, la cui seconda data (il 19 Marzo) non a caso coincide con l’evento Maledetta Primavera, un festival di musica italiana distribuito in tutta Italia e organizzato da Rockit. Seguite il tutto su frestyl, o se volete anche sugli altri 1000 canali (tra cui sito, Facebook, Twitter e bandcamp) usati dalle internaute del Frigopop!

:: karmanet