Nick Perri & The Underground Thieves, a Philadelphia-based band led by artist/songwriter/ producer Nick Perri, surprised fans by releasing a Spaghetti Western inspired short film titled “Once Upon a Time in the Desert” and accompanying original score called “Capistrano” today.
Written and produced by Perri, these unexpected releases serve as an official introduction to the band, and take listeners on a fun and cinematic journey.
“Although I’m from Philly, my heart has always been drawn to the look, mood, and vibe of the desert,” said Perri. “I’ve spent a considerable amount of time in Southern California over the last 10 years and the inspiration I’ve drawn from this area is as vast as the desert itself. Growing up as a first generation Italian-American has also had a huge impact on me, and there is no better culmination of all things Italian and Southwestern than the Spaghetti West- ern. This humble offering is my tribute to the genre.”
The film features bandmates Brian Weaver, Justin DiFebbo, Anthony and Michael Montesano, and Zil Fessler. Perri was aided by filmmakers Bill Sloggatt, Austin M Bauman, and Michael Winokur in the production of the short, which also features contributions from Derek Brad, Brynn Bailey, Ari Halbkram, David Melendez, and Taber Nash.
The film opens with Perri drifting along in the desert sun before being picked up by the band in an antique 1948 Greyhound bus. “I called in all the favors on this one,” said Perri. “I feel very fortune to be surrounded by such wonderful people and creators who always support my wild ideas and lift them to new heights. This was no exception.”
The accompanying score has a familiar sound, yet features Perri’s unique twist on the genre. “I’ve wanted to record a legitimate Spaghetti Western piece of music for many years, Perri said. “I knew I wanted some traditional elements, but also that it had to be electric guitar driven. It was one of my favorite experiences in music so far, and Myles Davis who played the flute and trumpet gave a breath-taking performance. I had goosebumps the whole time.”
“Capistrano”—along with The Underground Thieves’s preceding singles—is available on iTunes, Spotify and other major music networks. It was mixed and mastered by Marc DiSisto, whose credits include U2, Pink Floyd, and Blondie. DiSisto also engineered Silvertide’s “Show & Tell” album, on which Perri was lead guitarist and co-song- writer.
The Thieves were recently named one of “20 great bands to shake up the 2020’s” in the UK by LouderSound.com and Classic Rock Magazine.