MY CAT IS AN ALIEN (MCIAA) is the duo of radical instantaneous
composition and audiovisual art formed by brothers Maurizio and Roberto
Opalio in late 1997. They started their activity in Torino, Italy, before
moving in a remote region of the Western Alps. Multi-instrumentalists,
they primarily play electric and acoustic guitars, self-made string
instruments, various toy instruments (so-called 'space toys'), modified
electronics ('alientronics') and a wide set of percussion. Roberto Opalio's
personal use of wordless vocalizations adds human voice as a further
instrument in the list.
MCIAA's work range over many artistic activities: musical
performance, films and videos, audiovisual installations, photography,
poetry, drawings and paintings.
The visual aspect in MCIAA's esthetics is of primary importance;
all record artworks are curated by Roberto Opalio whose distinctive
artistic stamp gives a strong style to all their works.
MCIAA have set up multimedia collaborations with vanguards such as Sonic
Youth, Christian Marclay, Thurston Moore, Keiji Haino, Lee Ranaldo,
Jim O'Rourke, Michael Morley (Dead C), Loren Connors, Jackie-O Motherfucker,
Nels Cline, Text of Light, Steve Roden, Mats Gustafsson and many
MCIAA have licensed more than 100 records to prestigious international
labels such as Thurston Moore's (Sonic Youth) Ecstatic Peace!,
as well as to Atavistic Worldwide (USA), Important Records
(USA), Les Disques VICTO (CAN), Very Friendly/ Cargo
(UK), PSF (Japan), Staalplaat/ Mort Aux Vaches (NL),
Eclipse Records (USA), Starlight Furniture Co./ Revolver
(USA), Last Visible Dog (USA), Time-Lag Records (USA),
PseudoArcana (NZ), Sloow Tapes (B), Ikuisuus
(FIN), Digitalis (USA), Elliptical Noise (CAN) among
Since the beginning the duo also dedicated to several private and ultra-limited
Since MCIAA formed, they toured several times in Europe with Sonic Youth,
and have performed at many events and international festivals of experimental
music and multimedia arts: ATP Nightmare Before Christmas 2006 curated
by Thurston Moore, UK / State-X festival, Den Haag /
K-raa-k Festival, Hasselt / Music Lovers' Field Companion festival
c/o The Sage Gateshead, Newcastle / Instants Chavirés,
Paris / Cafe Oto, London / La Batie festival - Victoria
Hall, Geneve / CCA Center of Contemporary Arts, Glasgow
/ Feedback Festival, Dijon / Theater Coliseum, Porto
/ Razzmatazz, Barcelona / Ancien Belgique, Brussel
/ 013, Tilburg / Stimul Festival, Prague / Fondazione
Mazzotta, Milano / Kulturbunker Mulheim, Cologne / VPRO
radio tv session, Amsterdam / ZDB, Lisbon / Netmage Festival,
Bologna / Extra Festival, Torino / Festival Sotto Le Stelle,
Ferrara / La Casa Encendida, Madrid / Festival International
de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville, Canada.
In 2005 Roberto Opalio has been commissioned to design a t-shirt for
The Wire magazine.
'Different Shades Of Blue' has been awarded album of 2005 in
the Top chart "THE BEST OF AMBIENT WORKS 1969-2009" by Studio
Voice magazine and book publications in Japan.
Roberto Opalio and My Cat Is An Alien has taken part to "Sonic
Youth etc.: Sensational Fix" touring exhibition, scheduled
in big European museums of contemporary arts between 2008 and 2010.
At the opening at LiFE museum (F) in June 2008, MCIAA set up
a live performance collaboration with Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth)
and Micheal Morley (Dead C), published by Starlight Furniture
Co. USA in September 2009.
A new album of this collaborative project with Lee Ranaldo
was published in November 2010 by Atavistic.
Other than the official exhibition catalog published by
Walter Koenig (which was awarded in 2008 by L'Arbre à
Lettres, Paris), curator Roland Groenenboom presented a spin-off
limited zine at Malmo Konsthall, featuring exclusive artworks by Roberto
Opalio and MCIAA.
MCIAA's articles, interviews and extended reviews are featured on the
most important international music magazines like The Wire
(UK), The Sound Projector (UK), Dream Magazine (USA),
Arthur Magazine (USA), The Ptolemaic Terrascope (UK),
Brokenface (SWE), Dusted Magazine (USA), Foxy
Digitalis (USA), Stylus Magazine (USA), Noiseweek
(USA), Brainwashed (USA), Kwadratuur (BE),
Blow Up (ITA), Gaz-Eta (PL), His Voice (CZ),
and many more.
In 2011, Elliptical Noise records (CAN) published 'ALIENOLOGY:
Selected Works 1998-2008', a ten disc box retrospective of MCIAA's
first thirteen years of activity.
In September 2011, My Cat Is An Alien are the cover stars
of The Wire magazine.