Jules on mangy couch

Find me a drummer with a golden touch and soul to match. The rest of the song will write itself.

Except Jules ain’t waiting for it to come to him. Waiting’s for the wicked. So he’s been chasing that tune his entire life. Beating up those drums ever since his father left the drumsticks lying around. Digging into those guitars to shake out all those subterranean blues. Howling at a swampy sunset in a warn-out universe. Natural talent meets unnatural determination. Ripping along like a stubborn train, down the same lonely road all the greats inevitably travel.  Stopping only to stand still. To grieve what gets left behind.

 After dropping Computer Engineering cold turkey to pursue music at Vanier College, Giulio Pampena was selected to play the Montreal Drumfest’s Yamaha Rising Stars Showcase amongst some of the worlds’ best.

But then Jules always wanted to be more than just another flashy drummer hocking instructional videos on paradiddles. Trapped behind the kit.

With Montreal-based Kamikaze Baby he fed a blind passion for songwriting. For creating something that mattered. With no label support, the band released two critically acclaimed EPs and Uptown VineRise, a concept album in which he performed most of the music before handing it off to Grammy-nominated producer Glen Robinson and mastering legend Howie Weinberg. They sold out sweaty local venues amid ambitious stage and light shows. They toured fearlessly and stripped it down for college radio. They made believers out of total strangers and then slept on their couches.

The band split in 2009. A door closed. What should have left Jules winded only made him run that much faster.

In 2010 he joined Rishi Dhir’s psychedelic pop group, Elephant Stone, midflight, and played the US Midwest with cult legends The Brian Jonestown Massacre before touring their own Polaris-Prize nominated The Seven Seas across Europe. He ran with Maple recording artist Nash for some time. And in between, he ran with LA-based guitarist Dominic Cifarelli to form a noisy prog-punk trio called Curious Case. Jules co-wrote and performed on both a self-titled EP and the full-length Lucyfer’s Love Letter in 2012. He quietly assumed video-editing duties as well. And he continued to beat up those drums pretty good too.

A window opened. A rock legend took notice.

One chance audition on a last-minute decision to relocate to Los Angeles – that’s all it took to convince System of a Down guitarist Daron Malakian. Jules landed himself drumming duties for Scars on Broadway and toured the US with the Deftones in 2012.

And still, lost somewhere in all those ecstatic, depressing miles, Jules found a way to shine the harsh light on himself. To wail into sludgy harmonicas, ghostly guitars and distorted microphones. To chase that perfect song, again.

Mangy Pride is the musical equivalent of a nude painting. Both self-titled EP and Never Tomorrow are the haunted outlines of ancient, fuzzy demons. Schizophrenic sound waves and dreams that still matter. Even if living in the dream is not enough. This is Jules. Not trying too hard. Not saying too much. Just a spoke on a wheel. Handling all the instruments. Handling all the production. Singing his own reincarnation blues.

Still howling at the tumbledown universe. Still waiting for her to howl back.


Bio by Robert Scalia