Ask chief songwriter, front man and guitarist Joe Albanese about the new band and he will describe Fell Desire musically as "ferocious elegance." Past projects that he and percussion-playing wife, Cat have been involved in have always spun with a punk ethic and a bombastic presentation that bordered on intense musical destruction to drive home the point. The Albanese's history began when Joe was in a band called 4 Living Creatures in Va. Beach, Virginia. They met at a 4LC show and soon Joe's world would be undone by love. Cat joined the band on percussion. 4LC was what Joe described musically as "The Sex Pistols mixed with Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Black Flag." Their anthems like "Suddenly Religion" told stories of reality hitting after being locked in jail for a DUI and a girl getting pregnant after a night of partying with the wrong crowd (Her belly's like a pitcher's mound/ And mom's jaw drops at the news she's found/ A baby spans the vision/ Suddenly there's religion!). In 1995, 4LC released an independent CD, Proletariat Poetry on Brad Wells' label, Frozen Rope Records.
By 1996, their love for 4LC was waning. Joe and Cat were seeking a more passionate commitment in their own lives and within a band. With founding 4LC bassist, Willie Dizon, the three friends began working on songs Joe had written. Soon, Chris Gildersleeve (drums) and Bryan Whitfield (guitar) joined. The band became Elder. At the heart of Elder was passionate desire to see kids get saved and come into the presence of God. Elder gigs in Tidewater, VA were notorious for their evangelistic twist. It was like going to punk-goth-rock tent revival. Their first CD, Used To Be Adorable, was "funk 'n' punk" goth rock and Middle Eastern vibes with skilled intensity and scorching messages like "Dedmansbontupic" (a message to the church), "Red Earth" (abortion's holocaust), and "Ninety-nine & One" (Jesus going after the lost). The record was well received in magazines including a great review in Circus (April 97). They got the attention of Bulletproof Records and released Plagues and Woes in 1998. Elder played with P.O.D. (Payable On Death), Mortal, Skillet, Soulfood 76, Dodavahu, Broomtree and Scaterd Few. Although for Joe, Plagues and Woes was a project where he gave up on his vision. The line-up even changed, as the band of brothers became "professionals." The vision for passion and the love of God was being lost in the processes of industry. On the last night of their tour with Squad Five-0, Johnny Respect and Dear Ephesus, the band frustratingly smashed their guitars and walked-off beaten and broken-up.
Joe continued writing. He was searching his heart and experimenting further in Middle Eastern textures and Cat's penchant for Latin rhythms in the hopes of discovering innovative, spirit-filled music. Having served in Turkey while in the US Navy, Joe was always fascinated with the music of those lands. The project named Ozone Park was put on hold when their church had relocated to Maine in 1999. They were running a community in the countryside well beyond the town of Bangor. In 2001, Joe and Cat relocated to Indiana. They had lost many relationships and were in a foreign land. However God was doing something new.
In 2002 he hooked up with future Fell Desire bassist, Joey Ernst to help carry on the musical vision. The music is stripped down, funky and alternative reminiscent of the Cure, Counting Crowes, Elvis Costello and Led Zeppelin all thrown together. Ernst encouraged Joe's original vision which was away from the dark progressions and into brighter constructs. Joe's writing became focused on the Love of God and the desire to chase the dreams that God had placed in him. "It's all about passion, desire and love. There is a question in the band that goes, 'Is it fell?' which means, is it from that place or desire that moves you to go after those God given passionate dreams." The CD is a fourteen song sonnet entitled, Love. It is filled with the message of that one voice calling to you in the wilderness ("Love"), the undeniable mercy of all who accept the cross ("Forgetful Seas," "Like Breathing," "Love Like A Circle") and the relationship of Christ with the bride ("Wonderful," "Fawn," and "Always"). Joe adds, "the songs come from thinking with a broken heart, saying what words alone cannot. God has given much to me musically and I am finally in a place where I am honestly giving it back. His love is immeasurable and this is a glimpse of it and what I have always desired to share completely with music."