[media stories: 2000: english]

Along with Motorpsycho from Number Zero

Article about the Italian mega-psychonaut Sebasstiano taken from the
Norwegian newspaper
English translation done by Erik Aas Hystad.

(Milano / Pisa / Torino) The Norwegian band Motorpsycho have got a lot of Italian admirers. Aftenposten Aften went along with Sebasstiano Varini to his Motorpsycho-concert number 37, 38 and 39.

It's saturday, around midnight, and Motorpsycho have just finished the nights hard rockin' infront of 7-800 eager fans at the club Number Zero - Binario Zero - in Milano. Vocalist Bent Saether is acidic.
Nothing Worked. Guitarist Snah, drummer Gebhardt and the keyboard player agree. The band's regular dutch soundman Pieter Kloos has hated the club since they first got here.

We are never going to play here again, was the first thing he said to me in Italy.
Outside the band are handed gifts. Wine, liqueur, cakes, pictures, home-made candles, CD's and a whole lot of other stuff. Fans and old friends: Elisa, Betty and Mary are here. Andrea couldn't, still suffering from the flu he got while attending the start of the tour in Norway.

Every friend of Motorpsycho is a friend of me. Do you need a place to sleep?, Eliabetta alias Betty Boop asks. She pronounces Motorpsycho in Italian. Maataapsaikaa - with pressure on the 'p'. With some distance from the others a very shy Italian is waiting respectfully. Sebasstiano "found" Motorpsycho at a club near his hometown Trieste, on the boarder to Slovenia, six years ago. And was "rescued". Grateful Dead had Deadheads following the band. Motorpsycho got their Psychonauts.

Now I've realized that that concert weren't particularly good, but it changed my life, Sebasstiano says. Level-headed. I found my band. The next day Sebastianno and I travel to Pisa and concert at the club Ciak. There Motorpsycho woke up to sing-along outside the bus. The 20-minutes-monster "The Wheel".

To me Bent is like Beethoven, says Antonello who has travelled the four hours from Rome by train to see them in Milano and Pisa. Luckily he isn't deaf, says Sebasstiano. It's a weird day. The night before Gebhardt's home in Trondheim became a victim of flames. The concert kicks off with a 45 minutes long experiment around the song "Un chien d'espace", before the band slides into more accessible waters. The audience and the band lift each others to some of the most impressive I've ever seen on a stage.

I think Italy suits Motorpsycho. Here they're given time and room to experiment without the audience getting restless., says Sebasstiano. In the middle of the night Gebhardt goes outside with food to the very same people that started the day by singing "The Wheel". They've used all their money to travel in the tracks of the band, but they're still happy. And very thankful for the food from Motorpsycho's drummer.

The day after is a day off. I invite Sebasstiano to dinner with Motorpsycho in beautiful Firenze. Afterwards he is deeply moved.

Without you this would never have happened. I have to thank you again. I was afraid it was going to be very emotional to sit there and eat together with my band, but I feel it worked out well, he says subsequently.

It's people like him that makes it easy to go on, says Snah.

He is almost too modest, Bent says.

There is nothing modest about Sebasstianos driving along the European roads. In his Peugeot 205 GTI he drove to Oslo. Fifteen out of 38 concerts have been attended in Norway.

That trip was more than 5000 kilometers long. I saw every Motorpsycho-concert in Norway last fall.

You're always on the guestlist?

Lucky me.

But still you're using more money on Motorpsycho than anyone else?
Big Smile.

I've moved out, but not in. I quit my job. They didn't like that I was so much gone.

Next year we're playing Cuba - you're on the guestlist, Bent says.

You could drive to the North Pole, down again to Florida and swim from there!

Motorpsycho are at the end of another European tour, from Tromsoe in north to Pisa in south. They're finishing with a sold-out Rockefeller on Sunday. Are we going to see Sebasstiano in Oslo on Sunday?

No, he insists before we leave Italy. But he wasn't going Torino either. And this article is going to be sent to Trieste.

I suppose it will be in Norwegian - I'll have to learn the language soon, he says.
It's not for certain that he's kidding.

Kjell Henning Thon