A few days after the sudden news of Marko Benini’s split from the beloved alternative rock group ISO, fans are still eagerly awaiting answers about what is next for this drumming virtuoso.
When news like this breaks the cause often seems to sway in one of two directions; a front man with an ever growing ego; or a day job that pays. In this case though it was a deeply personal decision where Marko admits: “it is simply a culmination of creativity that I needed to get out”.
There is no denying that over the career span of ISO, the band has gone through many changes, updating everything from their sound to their look. “ There came a time where I felt I was more restricted with my playing compared to when we first started out. There was not much room for improvisation.” As creative artists I agree that musicians cannot be constrained when it comes to their music. “The drums became watered down and playing it felt a bit superficial.”
This imminent decision of his departure brought with it many changes for Marko. “When I started realizing I wanted to leave I began listening to a lot of different music because I wasn’t getting anything from rock music anymore. I really got into soul especially Northern Soul as well as Hip-Hop which uses a lot of soul for sampling.”
What does this mean in the greater scheme of things? “I really got into the sampling thing. I want to release a bunch of Beat-tapes in the vain of Madlib and J Dilla. The kind of hip hop that came from the mid and late 2000s.”
As the saying goes “a change is as good as a holiday” and this is exactly what Marko is doing. “I’m composing from the drums first and I’m absolutely loving it. It was the total reverse of my usual writing process, starting off with a beat in stead of some chords…”
So what does the immediate future hold for him? “ I’m releasing the first beat tape next month and I’ll carry on with that for a while. I’m hoping to eventually compile some LP’s out of it.”
Does this mean there is no new band on the horizon? “ I’m not saying I won’t join a band again. If the music is right, who knows? I have over 300 completed songs that simply need some vocals and I might even need a band in the future to record with me but for now I am loving what I am doing.”
Over the years we have seen many bands come and go and musicians fade in and out of the spotlight but the mark of a true artist for me is the select few that have the courage to endure the long and treacherous roads of the music industry. I am tremendously exited for all the new prospects on the horizon for Marko Benini and I can assure you this is one muso you should keep your eye on!