With Cigarettes After Sex in Rome
(Photos & Video)

Location: Monk Roma,Via Giuseppe Mirri, 35, 00159 Roma RM, Italy

Words: Dimitris Mavrokefalidis – Photos: amusicmap.com

Listening while writing:

In an industrial area, fifteen minutes outside of Rome, on a road with factories you will find Monk Roma, a cultural association.  An unusual concert venue where one can enjoy concerts, open-air cinema nights, a game of ping-pong, vintage arcade games and drinks on deck chairs.

The whole set up  and atmosphere resemble  a cinema in an unfinished building, ready to show a silent black and white film. There’s a white cloth placed on stage and smoke in the air so as to set the scene. The concert begins with “Sunsetz”, a song that frontman Greg Gonzalez has said  is about seeing a lover’s face in the rearview mirror as he drives away. Likewise, in most of their video clips the aesthetic is tied together with black and white images & videos by surrealist photographer Man Ray. Gonzalez has characterized himself as a film kid, because he was born in an environment full of movies, his father was a video distributor, and during his childhood he remembers having watched hundreds of films. Actually, when he moved to New York in 2013, he started a job at Bellman Theater, a cinema on the Upper East Side working his way up from the ticket booth to manager status, and he loved the access it gave him to films. He only left his job once the band’s touring schedule made it impossible to continue.

In “K.” you will find it impossible not to be moved by his emotional performance. The girl who inspired him (in the song called “Kristen”) to write this particular one was from his hometown, they were in a long distance relationship, she came to visit him in New York, and the lyrics are mainly about that amazing week they spent together, but the feeling was always the same: “How much I miss her and how much I want her to come back”.

A couple of the most memorable moments were, undoubtedly, those of “Sweet” and “Apocalypse” when it felt as if we (the audience) were up there with them on stage and at times would overpower the distinctive melancholic voice of the microphone. Who would have thought that the “EP. I” recorded on a stairway of the University of Texas, at El Paso, would be sung so passionately by an audience (mostly Italians) who had come to hear and see them.

The truth is it’s hard not to cry at their concerts. Someone in front of me asks them to perform a song called “Please Don’t Cry” and starts crying. “People cry all the time at our shows. I remember when I saw Bob Dylan playing “A Simple Twist Of Fate” I started sobbing” Gonzalez said in a recent interview. No one can deny that Cigarettes After Sex music has to do with uncontrollable emotions, fears, impulses, desires, and that can haunt you for days or even months after the first time you experience them live.  Like their verse from “Apocalypse”:

 “You’ve been locked here forever, and you can’t say goodbye.”



  1. Sunsetz

  2. Young & Dumb

  3. I’m a Firefighter

  4. John Wayne

  5. K.

  6. Keep On Loving You

  7. Sweet

  8. Opera House

  9. Affection

  10. Each Time You Fall In Love

  11. Nothing’s Gonna Hurt You Baby

  12. Apocalypse


  1. Please Don’t Cry

  2. Dreaming Of You


Watch our videos from the concert:

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