Dazed Digital

Santiago

Bahía Inútil

February 29, 2012

A theatrical new band escape the noise of Santiago to be inspired by the extreme south of Chile

  • Text by Nico Castro

Bahía Inútil (Spanish for "useless bay") is a real place, located at one of the places where the world seems to end, in the beautiful Chilean Patagonia. And from now on Bahía Inútil is also the name of a new local band, that started originally as a solo project from Manuela Infante, a dramatist and theater director who has always been into music. But it wasn't until succesful singer-songwriter Fernando Milagros offered some professional help to record her songs that she decided to make a proper album.

As beautiful as the places its music is indebted, the four piece went to southern city Punta Arenas to escape from Santiago's noise, in order to fully grasp what they wanted to develop, in terms of sound and lyrics. They travelled across America to polish up in a Brooklyn studio. The result of that long journey is called "Stand Scared" and it was offered as a free download, which you can grab right here, for the price of an email. We spoke to Manuela and Fernando from Bahía Inútilto...

Satellite Voices: How did you decide to go from theater to music? At which point did you realise that a band could come out from this solo project?
Manuela Infante:
I don't think I ever decided to go from one to another - I think both have always been present. It just happens that one of them was more public than the other, but I've always mixed them. There's a lot of music in theater, in things like rhythm, voices or movement within space. I firmly believe that our perception is synaestethic - we hear images, see sounds, taste what we see, see what we play. I see everything as a development of the same artwork. And for me, during the last couple of years, that purely affective space that music offers was something essential to discover.

SV: The name comes from a place located well south, and you also recorded there. How can we see that in your music?
Manuela Infante:
As an image. To think about a devastated bay that is useless, is to locate yourself in a special place, conceptually and emotionally. Going to Punta Arenas responds to that very same wish - simply putting ourselves in an unusual place and let that drive us. We should consider where we are, where we record. That's why Fernando's mobile studio is such a beautiful project, because it responds to that beautiful and forgotten notion. I hope it becomes a permanent way of working for us.

SV: Is there a reason for singing in English? What are your thoughts on local people criticising it?
Fernando Milagros:
I think it's okay for people to criticise. And it's also okay for these lyrics to be in English. Maybe it's pointing towards other places, clearly to people that doesn't criticise it. For me it's entertaining. For people that like Spanish singing, I have my solo project and that's it.

Manuela Infante: I don't think everything needs a reason.

SV: What are your plans for 2012, after releasing your debut album? Is this something that you want to keep on doing or was it a one time project?
Fernando Milagros:
We're preparing a video to close the debut album, and we're also starting to record some demos for our next album, that will be more electronic and world music oriented. You can check an advance of that here.

SV: Finally, what other local bands or artists would you like to recommend?
Fernando Milagros:
I like several new projects. I would recommend Projimo Bill, Protistas, Nueva Orleans, Fakuta, La Big Rabia and Matías Cena.

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