Born in Montreal as Aldo Caporuscio, Aldo Nova got his start in music rather late, not picking up a guitar until he was 15. But inspired by the likes of Clapton, Hendrix, and jazz, he immersed himself in the guitar with what would become his characteristic obsessiveness, practising non-stop.
By early 1980, the son of Italian immigrant parents, he was playing George Harrison while working in a production of Beatlemania, a gig that would last three years. By this time he was not only considered a local guitar hero, he was also quite proficient on the piano as well. During his off-time from being the silent guitarist in the fab-four, he worked as a studio engineer in the Montreal area. Access to the equipment proved vital to his future success. It was during the long studio sessions by himself after hours that he layed the foundations to what would become his debut lp. His time in the studios also helped hone his skills behind the boards, experience which would prove invaluable.
By '82 Nova had landed a publishing deal, then a recording deal with Portrait Records. Impressed by the raw feel of the demos done over the last couple of years, many of the songs on Nova's self-titled debut that year were put on as is, uncut and untouched. Portrait showed their confidence in the young talent by allowing him to serve as producer, still an uncommon practice for new acts to this day. The result was one of Canada's greatest debut records, burning with the passion of someone who's going to set the rock world on fire or go down in flames trying. It eventually reached platinum, and contained the hits "Foolin' Yourself", "Heart To Heart", the tender ballad "Ball and Chain" and the mega-classic about the seedier side of life in the city, "Fantasy". A complete unknown at the start of the year, Aldo Nova was a household name across Canada and already making a strong impression in the States as well by summer. The album and the single "Fantasy" topped Canada's charts, and the album eventually reached #8 on the US charts, selling two million copies in the process.
Still, the critics seemed unimpressed with Nova, particularly Rolling Stone which passed him off as "all flash and no substance", even though he was on some of the hottest concert tickets that year. Publicly he wasn't phased by the remarks, and he went into the studios to finish his second record SUBJECT ... ALDO NOVA. Finally hitting the shelves in late '83, it was originally intended as a concept album set in a post-holocaust waste-land. But he eventually molded it into a more conventional mainstream record, with the hit "Monkey On Your Back", about someone's struggle with substance abuse long before it was 'hip' to just say no.
Relying more on synthesizers, SUBJECT's moodier atmosphere showed maturity in the writing, toning down the sound without compromising his penchant for rocking the house down. The blazing cover of Coney Hatch's "Hey Operator" and the pounding rhythms of "Hold Back The Night" showed rare versatility and sophistication - commendable considering he still played most of the instruments, despite having a full backup band in support of his North American tours. The record went gold in Canada and made it to #56 in the US. That same year he also appeared on Claudja Barry's album NO LA DE LA, and also wrote "Take Me Away" for Blue Oyster Cult.
He spent the next couple of years touring, as well as writing jingles for commercials and lending a hand to other people's projects, including Michael Bolton and Lita Ford. He resurfaced in '85 with TWITCH. Aiming for what he called "a cross between rock and Don Henley", some of the blazing fury he'd become known for had been replaced with more complex texturing of more carefully thought out rhythms and beats. This was most evidenced by "Rumours Of You" and "Lay Your Love On Me". But "Erica," the cover of Ian Hunter's "Heartless" and "Tonight (Lift Me Up)" proved he could still shake the rafters when so inclined. The record also featured a venerable who's who of contributing guest artists, including Michael Bolton, Anton Fig, and Billy Carmassi. But confused by the change in direction, the fans though didn't accept TWITCH like the first two records and the critics gloated in what they believed all along, that he was a flash in the pan.
Portrait dropped him from their roster, and he again slipped out of the limelight, concentrating on outside projects until 1990, when he served on the production team of several other artists' recordings. He also co-wrote Jon Bon Jovi's "Blaze Of Glory" for the Young Guns II soundtrack, and also worked with Celine Dion and Chantal Condor, among others.
He was signed to Bon Jovi's label Jambco Records and released BLOOD ON THE BRICKS in '91. He called on Bon Jovi to co-produce the record, who, along with Nova and Jim Vallance, co-wrote many of the tracks. The album was stripped of all pretentious production, and relied on a series of slick songs with raw flare, such as in the title track, "Medicine Man," and "Modern World." "This Ain't Love" also showcased his penchant for writing the tender ballad. A greatest hits package called A PORTRAIT OF ALDO NOVA was released that same year.
He returned with NOVA'S DREAM on BMG Records in '97. Predominately an electronic instrumental album with some vocal effects and a variety of choirs, it seemed to be for himself, rather than the record buying public. Unlike his other records, it didn't feature co-writers, but contained some of his most interesting works to date - including "My Soul To Keep," "Dreamwalk," "Pressure Cooker" and "Freedom."
He again dropped out of the limelight, not even touring to support NOVA'S DREAM, again choosing instead to work behind the scenes with other artists, including co-writing CLay Aiken's "This Is The Night" in 2003. Portrait dusted off his old catalogue and released THE BEST OF ALDO NOVA in 2006, which featured 15 tracks distributed evenly between his debut, SUBJECT and TWITCH.
A year later Acadia Records released another compilation - UNDER THE GUN - A PORTRAIT OF ALDO NOVA. Again, not quite a 'best of' collection, the two disc compilation featured the entire first two records, a remix of "Foolin' Yourself," and five tracks from TWITCH.
In 2010 he released the album TOO MUCH SEX.