Archive for July, 2014


Anjael ‘Brave Lion’ is a proud Canadian artiste, Anjael trained in several instruments under the guidance of his parents before settling on his love, the guitar. As he grew up, the travels of a diplomatic father introduced him to world music of various genres.

He trained and travelled extensively thereafter, calling Israel, India, Philippines, China, Vienna, Costa Rica and finally Canada home; perfecting his skills as a professional Uke player, guitarist, classic rock singer, song writer and composer. He even managed to be voted best international poet of the year by the International Library of Poetry USA.

Anjael Interview

Metal Empire: Hey there, how are? Would you care to introduce yourself for our audience? What is your name and what do you do?

Anjael: Hey Luke! I am very fine thank you and hoping you are doing well too! Off course! I would love to introduce myself to your wonderful audience.
I am Anjael – The man with the blue face from Canada and I am a performing artist, singer, song writer, guitar player, drummer, composer and performer.

Metal Empire: What is the band up to at the moment? Is there something you’re working on currently?

Anjael: Honestly speaking, I have stopped being in bands for the last 15 years and do not run a “Band or Group per se” but, I nowadays always work on project groups which features various musicians together and yes, at this very moment I am part of the project group called Re-Action and we are working on hard core avant-garde rock fusion music or on my solo acts where I am supported by other musicians or all alone.

Metal Empire: What’s the inspiration behind your blue face performances?

Anjael: Foremost, blue happens to be one of my favored colours. I choose blue as it is also the colour of the wide expansive sky which accepts us all irrespective of our caste, creed or colour and it also happens to have a spiritual meaning behind it mainly, something stemming from my own spiritual practices of universal brotherhood to fight various forms of prevalent poisonous racism & allied poisons globally.

Metal Empire: Classical hard FJ-rock & FJ Blues is a unusual choice of genres, how did it come about?

Anjael: Well….my very beginnings in music as a toddler was fully immersed in mid-Eastern, eastern & western classical music which gave way to my classic hard rock blooming. Having spent at least a good 15 professional years in hard rock, heavy metal field left a certain void in my heart not being able to satisfy my musical cravings playing by merely playing standard rock or blues or metal and I had to find a resting place somewhere between my erstwhile roots and present day yearnings and thus I spent the next 10 years exclusively in the fusion field to arrive on this genre of fusion jazz rock or FJ rock and FJ blues. It really came about as the result of taking all my prior musical tutelage, experience and background and finally merging that into something I felt very pleased to play with.

Metal Empire: Can you talk a little about the ideas behind the Re-action Project Group?

Anjael: Hmm….Project Re-action is a collaboration of ideas between me and ex Dave Gilmour, Uriah Heep, Bad Company keyboard player and musician Gregg Dechert.
For long we both wanted to find a suitable medium to express our music in an spontaneous platform where we could exchange dialogues of creative sparks between the musicians i.e. – different instruments and create a solid accord from what appeared to be discord at first.

Both me and Gregg have been for a very long time, dismayed at the lack of or the minority of genuine audience who sincerely appreciate “out of the box thinking” if you will and for a change try and understand that, music is not meant to be in a box or that, nowadays music has become a source of lewdness , nudity and vulgar expressions or anything but, the real music seems to captivate global audience.

Metal Empire: Can you talk about your production process? How do you go about writing new material?

Anjael: What I / we do is, often I will compose the main theme or basic skeleton and then offer the same to other musicians for enhancement. If the resultant product comes out as envisioned in my minds studio then we work around it making extensive notes and dictations on how to and where to in the scores. Then I record them onto a small file or a hand held recorder and sent this to the choice of musicians I have in mind and let them see what they can do best.

I write new material voraciously daily :-) penning down on paper, translating on guitar, keyboards, drums, bass and then seeks to sometimes use words to match the tune or keep it instrumental.

Sometimes my writing spell can run long and dry. I then will go and enhance one of my friends music -relaying the same idea and then deriving inspiration of it for my own creativity. We all follow the same habits.

Metal Empire: Your fans say you have a unique drumming technique, who are some of your inspirations?

Anjael: I adore my fans and mainly those I know are in complete support of my efforts as an artist. My biggest inspiration is and will always be my parents, who have also been my most imp music teachers and mentors and my lil sister , all three of them I mourn for lifelong. Although I have grown up listening to some wonderful drummers like Steve Gadd for his peculiar bass work, Sonny Emory for excellent all round drumming, Omar hakim for tight funk , Harvey mason for his tight wonderful sound and Dennis chambers for speed and art but, I draw my inspiration to drumming from very ancient sources and my tutelage in various drumming methods of yore which makes my drumming completely different compared to anyone else around you’ve ever heard.

As my fans would say, my drumming is very eclectic mixture of Afro Cuban Latin mixed with the playing styles of the above mentioned greats and then a completely new dimension of temple rhythms from eastern and mid eastern classical and I fail to mention any one name as my inspiration besides the divine quest of para permutations and mathematics and as all my fans know me as the only known exponent of ancient Sama’un trance drumming in the world today related closely to Naqi Taqlid traditions.

Metal Empire: I have come to know through the grapevine that, you were also recently awarded a Hall of Fame status? Can you tell us if its right or just a rumor?

Anjael: News travels fast I guess :-) actually it’s not a rumour, but true and I was given a Hall of Fame status as a one of its kind authentic fusion musician, composer, drummer, guitarist, singer and fusion jazz clarinet player by an elite group of underground E. European musicians association very famous for jazz & fusion music education, promotion and not known widely abroad and there is work being done to bring the association members, faculty artists and educators to the www media very soon. All fans can read about it soon in my personal website as well.

Metal Empire: What major issues and obstacles do you feel musicians confront in today’s world of music?

Anjael:Aha such a nice question! Provided we are discussing real musicians lol! Today it is very difficult to find musicians who are playing strictly music (which I can explain later) and the need to express musically without the need to alter anything in their persona to cater too or fit a label, record company or a bunch of crowd who are too drunk to appreciate a thing.

The biggest drawback is/will be forever is to find right platform, global audience and sincere appreciation for a musicians who for example…spent 10-12 years in perfecting his/her craft and be allowed to display such with great joy and pride? This does happen in select countries and select venues and the crowd for such is also very selected. On top dirty politics is always involved and then huge crisis in getting shows.

Explaining what I meant by strictly music-I meant musicians who play music for the sake of music, to express, nurture, show case talents and skills devoid of anything else and the desire to keep getting better at what they play or do. Can you do that at some nightclub? A pub? How many people will come to your concert because you are not playing “popular music” or dance music, but real music. :-)

Metal Empire: What do you mean by the NCP syndrome, and how it affects music/musicians?

Anjael:NCP -is coined term for “No cleavage panty syndrome:” – wherever we see now real music and musicians have taken a back seat and it’s all about display of physical parts as opposed to music. Teens, grownups, serious listeners and appreciators of true art all are exposed to this sudden mad rush of vulgar display which has little to do with music, suddenly everyone is dying to look like a diva, suddenly a musician is now like a film star, artists who cannot sing nor play worth a hoot but, are famous on the basis of that NCP and off course it will and will always hurt the real musician. Since we have no NCP therefore we and true musicians alike have to sweat it out in frustrations and pains. This modern day syndrome effects every genuine musician and performer or artist globally.

Metal Empire: Have you played any shows or toured alongside any major artists, if not, would you like to?

Anjael: Yes I actually have all my life since my childhood :-) but, the definition of that word “major artist” would once again be determined by if they are popular to the global crowd or not. Most of whom I have played or associated with are not very well known at all in the occidental world barring a few.

I have shared stages with the much beloved, respected and now of late departed Woodstock icon legend Mr. Richie Pierce Havens -who I believed should have got much more attention and audience over few others who do with empty music, empty songs and nothing musical.

I am honored to be touring and doing shows now with ex Dave Gilmour, Uriah Heep, Bad Company, Dream academy, Feather wheel, Trevor Jones and Mick Maves keyboard player / arranger Gregg Dechert.

I am also currently playing and touring with Johnny Victor, from Euro & Spanish ex Chart topper group Jade & Vibrations from Gibraltar and a host of other musicians down the decades and yes! I would love to compliment and offer my gifts and skills of music to everyone who would consider me.

I was touring and playing with an Canadian Icon of Delta blues guitars Mr. Alonzo Carrington aka Al Carter who played with none other than Muddy Waters and like but, we lost him recently over 2013.

Maestro-Anjael-The-Man-2

Metal Empire: Is there any band or artist you would give anything to play a show with? If so, who are they and why?

Anjael: Yes! But, could I give anything besides what I humbly posses :-) lol? I would love to play along with Mark Knofler, Eric Clapton, Chick Corea band, Tommy Emanuel, Floatsam Jetsam :-), Omar Hakim band, John McLaughlin, Trilok Gurtu, Osibisa, Lee Ritenour band, Robben Ford band, Yanni ensemble etc. because I would love to gift them something to be thrilled with in guitar playing as well as in my drumming and that, I believe strongly I can complement their genre and music very dar’n well with exceptional nuances to their way of colouring the musical canvas as I was kind of born into this multi generic multi coloured world global music.

Metal Empire: Do you have any desire to perform in U.K. in the near future?

Anjael: OMG I would just love too! And so would all my chums!

Metal Empire: What are you hopes moving forward? Where do you see yourself as an artist this time next year or the year after?

Anjael:The aspirations are to be deeply and vastly appreciated worldwide off course! and I am not one known to ever stop or give up but, the global situation presents a great difficulty for real musicians and artists to present our skills on platforms where we could catapult ourselves aye. This time next year I would have already done couple of more deserving shows and would have already released my 2nd or 3rd album either in solo or with my good friends. There is an ongoing dialogue that, I may also be back on a foreign circuit tour that is “ The Good Lord willing” and would have managed to find a rightful place in the global scenario as a very different eclectic drummer of a kind and a guitar player, musician , singer songwriter and to leave my mark before I croak and most certainly share and teach anyone dedicated to learn such traditional arts.

Metal Empire: Do you receive much fan mail, and if so what’s the craziest, creepiest or coolest thing you’ve ever gotten from a fan?

Anjael:Yes1 I do receive fan mails from time to time and as you are aware I , cannot always type or respond due to both my hands being damaged and in perpetual pain over the 2009 fire and personal life incidents, left alone to fend off in that state but, I do sincerely try to answer and the coolest thing I’ve ever got from a fan was “A cuddly little teddy bear and a box of German Marzipan chocolates from Germany-it was very heart warming for me! When I was playing in a Cafe in 1996-7 and a very handsome man whom I recognized instantly as someone, both me and my late mother were fan of as an actor and when I told him that, He responded by saying, “but I too have been a very big fan of your songs, music for a long time and handed me a 100$ bill which read “from your fan -signed”- his name was Marc Zuber from UK & India.
I am yet to encounter crazy or creepy fans :-) lol

Metal Empire: If you had one wish that could change the world, what would it be and why?

Anjael: I do have one sincere wish ever since childhood that is , why are the people of earth bowing down and praying to anyone or anything less than that, One supreme heavenly creator? The one who created us all for no one else but, creator source G-D did and that is the only rightful object of all our love isn’t it strange? For this would instill in the people the truth of universal creed of humanity, break down the walls of separation due to socio- religious political tactics. Dispel that great ignorance that skin color is an issue? And to judge us only by our deeds not by any other means. Then based on that universal worship of one-sense, One-ness-world would unite , people’s hearts would unite , there would be no such thing as Muslim, Hindu, Christian, Jew, Buddhist fractions but, a singular truth that, God is neither of any of these religions and is of ALL and all Prophets and all creation comes from that one-ness we now term G-D.
It would solve all issues really that we actually do suffer today from such fractional war going on in our hearts and minds and bring about true Equality of love, treatment and respect amongst men , towards woman, nature and animals alike.

Metal Empire: Where can fans or listeners get to know more about you, your work and music?

Anjael: I would request all fans and dear listeners to either go visit http://www.lionofhebron.com or go find me on our YouTube channel – Maestro Anjael, or download an album from http://www.cdbaby.com and if one writes to me at info@lionofhebron.com with few kind words and comments then one can have a gift CD album digital version via email for free and I am also working on getting a completely new drum specific website set up soon.

Metal Empire: Thank you for taking the time to speak to Metal Empire about what you do. Do you have any final words, or anything you would like to add?

Anjael: I thank Metal Empire from my deep heart for giving me this chance to reach out to your wonderful and hopefully my new wonderful audience :-). I want Metal Empire to prosper, I want your audience to prosper. I want you to remember me, Anjael -proudly from Canada as a strong defender of human core values and a fighter against dark forces. I want UK to be strong, I want all countries and nations to pledge themselves to one-ness of humanity and Please if any one of you would like to organize or invite and give me & my friends a chance to come to beautiful UK to perform then I promise to rock your socks off!
Thank you!

Maestro-Anjael-The-Man-3

The post Maestro Anjael: No Cleavage Panty Syndrome And The Hall Of Fame appeared first on Metal Empire.

from Metal Empire http://www.metalempire.co.uk/2014/07/maestro-anjael-no-cleavage-panty-syndrome-and-the-hall-of-fame/

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If you haven’t heard of Lyft before. It’s a mobile app that matches drivers with passengers who request rides through their smartphone app. When the ride ends, the app automatically charges payment from the passenger’s saved credit card.

Lyft drivers come up with creative ways to entertain customers. But what happens here is unbelievable. This driver likes to play ‘Cash Cab’, but soon gets more than he bargained for. This video is well worth watching to the end, even if it seems momently uncomfortable, sheerly because of how awkward the cab driver is.

This video was contributed by Comedian Arlo Sanders

The post Lyft Driver Plays ‘Cash Cab’ You’ll Never Believe What Happens Next appeared first on Hypefeeder.

from Hypefeeder http://www.hypefeeder.com/2014/07/lyft-driver-plays-cash-cab-youll-never-believe-what-happens-next/


Italian rock/metal band Heretic’s Dream have just signed a deal with the label Agoge Records. The band is working on their third album with producer Gianmarco Bellumori (New Disorder, Sin Of Night, Element of Chaos). The new album will be recorded, mixed and mastered in Bellumori’s Wolf Recording studio. The release expected for the end of 2014.

Heretic’s Dream received lots of positive press from their first two records, so it will be interesting to hear what they have in store for us next, now that they have a new label behind them. Seems the band has been very busy with over 100 shows over the last two years. That’s almost one every week for 2 years straight. Impressive for an unsigned act. With the backing of a label, I see them only getting busier.

Check out their video below for a taste of the Heretic’s unique style of melody driven symphonic rock!

Heretic’s dream – Chains of blood (official video)

Heretic's Dream

Heretic’s Dream Band

The post Italian Metallers Heretic’s Dream Ink a deal with Agoge Records appeared first on Metal Empire.

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from Metal Empire http://www.metalempire.co.uk/2014/07/italian-metallers-heretics-dream-ink-a-deal-with-agoge-records/


3Align are a Las Vegas based rock band, whose impressive resume includes opening spots for Guns n’ Roses, Aerosmith, Buckcherry, Chickenfoot and Puddle of Mudd among others. We caught up with them to talk about their new album entitled “ELEVATE”, which will be released digitally on July 15, 2014.

3Align Interview:

Metal Empire: Would you care to introduce yourself for our audience? What is your name and what do you do?

3ALIGN: I’m Alan Miller…Vocalist, Guitarist & ringleader for 3align!

Metal Empire: What is 3Align up to at the moment? Is there something you’re working on currently?

3ALIGN: We just released our 1st full length album “ELEVATE” worldwide July 15th & we’ve been doing a ton of publicity & shows to get our “positively heavy” message out!

Metal Empire: How do you feel about recording in the same studio as Five Finger Death Punch?

3ALIGN: It was amazing! 1st of all it’s Producer Kevin Churko’s (Ozzy, FFDP, In This Moment, Papa Roach, Hell Yeah) private studio…so you just can’t call up and book time there. You have to be invited & so far we’re the only indie band to record an album there! We used the same drum kit that FFDP used during a few of their records, so the drum sounds are huge!

Metal Empire: Did you meet any rock stars while you were recording?

3ALIGN: Jacoby from Papa Roach, Maria Brink & Chris from In This Moment, All the FFDP guys, Hell Yeah….We were mixing and Ace Frehley asked us where restroom was! Jake E. Lee even stopped by and hung out while we were tracking….Talk about pressure!

Metal Empire: Can you talk about your production process? How do you go about writing new material?

3ALIGN: On this Album Jack Roth (3align Drummer) & I recorded the basic tracks live in the same room. It helps to have that visual contact to get the vibe! Then we layered the tracks from there… As a far as writing the new material, we usually start with a strong riff or drum beat, then work the melody into the song. It does not take too long because we work with what flows… We actually wrote a few songs while we were tracking!

3Align Live

3Align live opening for Guns N Roses

Metal Empire: How long did the recording process take overall?

3ALIGN: We laid down 18 songs over a 3 day period, of which we chose 12 for this Album and are 6 ahead for the next record! It took another 8 months to work around all the other albums going on there, then a few months for “Juno Award Winner” Kane Churko (Papa Roach, In This Moment, FFDP) to mix.

Metal Empire: I heard a rumour that you were able to get some very impressive guests on the album, can you tell us who they were?

3ALIGN: My God…we we’re so fortunate to have Tony Franklin “The Fretless Monster” from the Firm and Blue Murder to join us. He played these Crazy harmonic bass slides all over the song “Feel Love”. Brent Fitz, who is Slash’s drummer and an amazing piano player, laid down a Baby Grand piano track that’s so cool, Bruce Hornsby would want the royalties because it sounds like his piano style on “Heaven’s Embrace”. Ronnie Mancuso from Red Dragon Cartel & Beggars & Thieves played a very psychedelic McCartney-esque bass part on “Little Bit Better”. Tony Breit, who played Bass with Lenny Kravitz and played on “Are You Gonna Go My Way”, added this incredible John Paul Jones feel to the song “Inspiratu” and finally Phill Robertson from Floodnine & Johnny Flamehead tore the roof off on the 5 string bass with the “Dimebag Darrell” inspired closing track “Rise”

Metal Empire: You’re music career shows you’ve shared the stage with a lot of big names in the rock industry. Can you tell us a little about who you’ve played with and what it was like to share the stage with them?

3ALIGN: We opened up for GNR, Chickenfoot, Aerosmith, Puddle of Mudd, 3Doors Down and a ton more, but every time is like this magical dream because you can’t believe who you’re on stage with. I once jammed on one stage with Sammy Hagar, Michael Anthony, Michael Shenker, Vinnie Paul, John 5, Doug Aldrich & Blas Elias….It was amazing!!!

Metal Empire: Is there any band or artist you would give anything to play a show with? If so, who are they and why?

3ALIGN: We are huge Van Halen fans, So that would be a great tour to be on!

Metal Empire: What’s been the highlight of your music career so far, or any special moments that you would like to share with us?

3ALIGN: Probably opening the GNR residency at the Hard Rock Hotel at the Joint in Las Vegas because it was a huge validation for 3ALIGN. We sent our stuff in and didn’t even think we would get the opening slot, but got a call 2 days before the show. All of a sudden were opening for GNR!!! We were told the GNR crowd was brutal, but they warmed up as soon as we stuck the 1st few chords! Bumblefoot was tweeting from the side of the stage that we were kicking ass! The GNR guys were very supportive… We were only scheduled to open one show, but it came down from Axl that they wanted us back for another two shows! That felt great!!!

3Align

Image Courtesy of 3Align

Metal Empire: What are you hopes for the future? Where do you see yourself as an artist this time next year or the year after?

3ALIGN: We plan to expand the music we create to all parts of the globe and tour the world!!! We are working on getting on a big tour that’s in the works and probably another residency at the Hard Rock. We plan on doing an album every year or year and a half. The next album is already written!

Metal Empire: If I was to turn up at a show, what should I expect from you in terms of music and showmanship? Is there any crazy stuff you do to pull the crowd?

3ALIGN: You’ll experience the crazy energy vortex we create with our fans! It’s contagious, because we love what we do and that takes hold! We get everyone one involved, because it’s about all of us in a communal moment, not an us and them kind of trip. We sound like our recordings because we don’t lay down anything we can’t do live…

Metal Empire: Do you receive much fan mail, and if so what’s the craziest, creepiest or coolest thing you’ve ever gotten from a fan?

3ALIGN: We get fan mail from all over the globe, but mostly emails. We did get an painting of us done in Star Wars characters…That was cool and odd at the same time!!! I was Chewbacca! LOL!

Metal Empire: If you had to describe your life as a movie, which movie would it be and why?

3ALIGN: Forest Gump! Lol! We just keep running into these incredible experiences that just keep expaning into bigger and better opportunities. It keeps us in amazement!!!

Metal Empire: If a genie grants you one wish, what would you wish for?

3ALIGN: That we’re able to spread our “Positively Heavy” music to the entire planet and beyond!!!

Metal Empire: Thank you for taking the time to speak to Metal Empire about what you do. Do you have any final words, or anything you would like to add?

3ALIGN: We’d like to thank you for all the great content on Metal Empire…You keep the metal dream alive for the whole world to see!!! Life is awesome…Metal up!

If you’d like to hear more from 3Align go check out their websites and social media at the following places.

3Align Links:

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube
Official Website

The post 3Align: We sound like our recordings because we don’t lay down anything we can’t do live appeared first on Metal Empire.

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from Metal Empire http://www.metalempire.co.uk/2014/07/3align-we-sound-like-our-recordings-because-we-dont-lay-down-anything-we-cant-do-live/


Slipknot’s twitter posted a rather confrontational tweet in the early hours of this morning. “This new album just isn’t going to be the same without Paul, but fuck Joey he’s a dick!”

One can only guess what might have sparked this one off. Was one of the band members drunk and let their emotions spill out over social media? I’m sure a lot of fans are feeling very confused right about now. We will keep you posted when more information becomes available.

 

Slipknot Tweet

Slipknot being very emotional over social media it seems

 

UPDATE (7.7.2014 04:23): Slipknot have quickly removed the offending post, but luckily a screenshot was taken so you can still view it here. Was it simply a bad decision on behalf of one of the band members, was the bands account hacked. Did the person in charge of Slipknot’s account get pranked? Questions still seemed to be unanswered at this time. Hopfully we will find out more soon, and we’ll keep you updated on the situation.

The post Slipknot tweet they miss Paul, but call Joey Jordison a dick? appeared first on Metal Empire.

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from Metal Empire http://www.metalempire.co.uk/2014/07/slipknot-tweet-miss-paul-call-joey-jordison-dick/


The Last Surrealist is a solo project of Chris Romans based out of Easton, Pennsylvania. The music creates spans a multitude of genres, from electronic and trance to black metal, post rock, neo-folk and others. In culmination, he calls his music “post life music” because while there is much diversity to be had throughout his tracks, the music is tied together by the theme of love, death, nihilism, depression, and a desire for rebirth into something better. In 2013 he released his three song EP entitled VOID, and is now back in July 2014 with the release of his first full length album POST LIFE MUSIC.

Metal Empire: Hey, thank you for speaking to Metal Empire today. How are you?

The Last Surrealist: I am well. Currently conversing with my cat. He talks back, but not in English. He’s kind of like a foreign gentleman. I think he wants to take me back to his house under the couch…

Metal Empire: The Last Surrealist is an interesting name, how did it come about? Is there a story or meaning behind it?

The Last Surrealist: I have an affection for surrealistic art, and frequently find myself in a dream-like state throughout the day. On the surface, you could say I daydream a lot, though that is a gross simplification; and the name is meant to evoke that I am constantly utilizing a number of thought processes at once and am not willing to isolate myself from my dream states.

Of course, at the end of the day, The Last Surrealist as a name is somewhat arbitrary as well. I wanted a name that wouldn’t confine me to heavily to a specific genre of music, and this is becoming far more clear since the development and release of Post Life Music.

Metal Empire: Can you tell us a little about your music and what you do?

The Last Surrealist: The music I have created over the years, and particularly on this new release, is complex to describe without sounding pretentious, redundant, or ridiculously angst ridden. But, I’ll say what I can. I have begun to call the music I create “post life music.” Call this a genre tag or something like it, but it’s far better than saying I make “electronic/trance, soundtrack/ambient, orchestral, post rock, neo-folk, black metal” music. The genre classifications are silly, but I really would like people to acknowledge that music on a record like Post Life Music can be diverse, spanning moments of abrasive black metal yet paired with more structured tracks that have pop music sensibilities and lighter tones. For myself, all of the music ties together by the theme. “Post life music” is the exploration of love, death, and the potential for an after life or rebirth. That latter element is fundamentally surreal to me.

Metal Empire: What are you up to at the moment? Is there something you’re working on currently?

The Last Surrealist: I am spending some time relaxing and clearing my mind as I’ve pumped a lot of effort and energy into the production of Post Life Music over the past year. I am beginning to tinker with the idea of developing a few solo acoustic tracks as well, but we’ll see how that goes.

Metal Empire: Seeing as you’ve just released a new album called Post Life Music, can you tell us a little bit more about it?

The Last Surrealist: Post Life Music is a culmination of my intellectual, emotional, and artistic growth. I’ve been creating music for quite some time now, and have worked under different names such as The Horizon of a Dream and Ethereal Morning Rise; only to find myself at this point as The Last Surrealist feeling far more confident and mature in my musical sensibilities. With previous album releases, I’ve always felt that there were some rough patches, moments of weakness, lackluster tracks, and so forth; mainly as a result of my production skills not being up to par with the ideas in my head. While I do not think Post Life Music is perfect by any stretch, it is far easier on the ears, which certainly will help it reach an audience. The diversity of sound on the album will likely lead to some divisiveness.

Metal Empire: You mentioned you used a lot of different genres in creating this record, how did that come about, what was the influence behind your decision?

The Last Surrealist: Since I started exploring music in my teenage years, I’ve found myself enjoying different styles of music more and more. I’ve gone through the silly phases. For a while I was addicted to listening to black metal. I would listen to it non-stop and read up on the history. Taking in the theatrical sights and acquiring interest in Satanism like every metalhead should. Then I grew out of it and found myself dabbling into neo-folk. It was a lighter style of music but had a lot of similar thematic ideas. The more I listened and narrowed myself to a singular musical world view, the more I ended up just getting bored. At some point in all this I started listening to New Age and classical music like Yanni, and it took my breath away, while simultaneously contradicting all of the things I originally thought about music having come from a background in dark and depressing forms of metal and folk.

I now realize that genre classifications are fundamentally meaningless if we wish to truly convey a range of emotions and experiences. So many artists offer up a one dimensional viewpoint of the world. By working with multiple genres it makes the creation of music more interesting for me, and allows me to make art on my own terms.

Post Life Music

Metal Empire: What would you say the main focus of your music is?

The Last Surrealist: On the surface, I make music for myself. I know this is an old cliche many artists will inundate interviewers with, but for myself it is a reality. I mean, I listen to my own music religiously. With the production of Post Life Music, this has been even more dramatically realized as I haven’t really explored much new music in the past few months outside of a few choice records like An Autumn For Crippled Children’s Try Not to Destroy Everything and Vindensang’s Alpha.

Aside from this, I like having the opportunity to speak candidly with myself and potentially an audience (if they want to hear it) about personal things going on inside my head. A lot of the music on this record emphasizes death, depression, and suicidally that has stemmed from seeing my sister die when I was younger. While most will not be able to relate to this particular event, I imagine these feelings pent up inside can be relatable, which is why I find music as a social construct to be useful, even if most people are looking to music as a means to escape into some sort of happy state of mind. I’d like to think that sometimes the best way to enlightenment or “happiness” is by going through the dark, dank tunnel system. Like boarding the subway in NYC. It’s dirty and their are homeless people all around, but I get off at the Upper East Side.

Metal Empire: Can you talk about your production process? How do you go about writing new material?

The Last Surrealist: The production process is a real headache. I work by myself with very limited feedback from friends. I am self-taught in all aspects of music. From learning how to play instruments to navigating DAW’s and sequencers, I do everything by myself for the most part. The struggle is that I have mediocre equipment, and it is constantly breaking down or otherwise failing me. So a simple recording session that should take 5 minutes turns into an hour long headache. But, I like the end result, it feels borderline orgasmic. It’s almost like I’m getting into a sadomasochistic relationship with my musical equipment, and I suppose that doesn’t bother me at all. It’s just bad when an SM57 starts to look more and more phallic and the mic stand like a person wanting to go to town on me.

I mainly write material through tablature, then overlay sequenced segments and on more than a few occasions play improvised lines. This is most notable on “Love is Subservient to Death” which showcases an acoustic bass throughout that is entirely improvised.

Metal Empire: What and who are some of your major influences? Please give a few details about what you enjoy about creating music and what inspires you to make it.

The Last Surrealist: I am influenced by a number of things. I really enjoy musicians that break away from the norm in some way. Bands like Agalloch, Vindensang, A Silver Mt. Zion, Nature & Organisation, Current 93, Cold Body Radiation, Clams Casino and Keaton Henson really get to me. It’s all sort of emotionally complex and theatrical in one way or another. On that latter point, I also draw much influence from film. Darren Aronofsky’s The Fountain is a major influence because of it’s story of love, death, and the desire for rebirth paired with the beautiful imagery and score. I also like absurdity and surrealism (which I tend to think go hand in hand), and dig people who talk about such things. Also: nihilism and the prospect of love in spite of it.

I enjoy creating music because I think it is able to capture thoughts in a complex way. Good music to me doesn’t capture a singular moment or idea, but a multitude of them all at once. When I listen to one of my tracks, it is as if all of these ideas have been assembled into a 4 or 10 minute piece in the form of layers. To some, it sounds nonsensical. Like the sound of a crowded building with many people talking. Each instrument speaks. Each synthetic texture says something. And sometimes my own voice steps out with pointed lyrics directed mainly towards myself, but on occasion towards the prospect of death, my disdain for religion and political establishments, and my desire for love even though I hardly believe in it at all.

Music is a constant conflict. It’s chaotic. At the moments when it makes the least sense to me. When I can’t understand how to produce a track consisting of 30 layered instruments. I just sit and feel the tactile stimulation of my guitar strings on my callused finger tips in a hot and humid room at my house.

Metal Empire: Is there anything else in life that drives you beside music?

The Last Surrealist: Sure. I have a number of motivating things in my life. I wake up mostly because my long term girlfriend is there. In truth, while my music may be rather melancholy and somber, a majority of the things I do, I do for the sake of humor. Albeit my dark sense of humor, but humor none the less. In fact, I like telling people that I want “I did it for the LOL’s” placed on my gravestone when I am dead and gone. Everything is a joke.

Metal Empire: Does your music have any political messages that you feel the world should be aware of?

The Last Surrealist: I try to be apolitical. Politics is a game of bullshit, whichever side you are on. Occasionally my music dabbles into topics like religion and war, but never really in a manner wherein I am attempting to say one thing is better than another thing. My own thoughts on most topics are contradictory in and of themselves and empathetic towards all involved. With war for instance, I’d rather not see people fight as I tend to be a kind person in real life. I don’t put up this front that I am some hardcore, aggressive, and violent person. But, on the flipside, I view the end of all things as being equivalent to nothingness. Everything lacks meaning and value. If people want to fight for their countries, kings, lovers, etc. then by all means go ahead. I’d just prefer that if I’m going to take a bullet to the head, I’m the one putting it there.

Metal Empire: Is there any band or artist you would give anything to play a show with? If so, who are they and why?

The Last Surrealist: You actually touch on a good point with this question. I don’t intend to play any shows. I find my music to be too complicated to strip down, and I generally don’t like being around people all that much. Plus, I feel live music often ruins the feeling of an album of work. That’s not to say I’ve completely ruled it out in the future, but I’m not overly inclined to work with others. That said, if given the chance I’d play alongside Vindensang or Current 93 because our music works off of similar atmospheres and themes.

Metal Empire: What are you hopes for the future? Where do you see yourself as an artist this time next year or the year after?

The Last Surrealist: I try not to get too ahead of myself. I like to live for the moment. I am thinking about writing an album of predominately acoustic neo-folk styled music, but we will see.

Metal Empire: Where can fans get their hands on a copy of your new record?

The Last Surrealist: Currently Post Life Music is only available in digital format via Our Bandcamp. If there is enough interest and donations, I will print physical copies and look into other marketing outlets.

Metal Empire: If you could have any musician from history feature on your next record who would you choose and why?

The Last Surrealist: I’d have to go with Antony Hegarty because of his beautiful vocal vibrato. It makes me feel gay inside. And that is okay.

Metal Empire: What’s your favourite TV Show?

The Last Surrealist: I only watch pornography and videos of people being murdered. I’m only kind of joking. At this point, I’d be inclined to say that The Flight of the Concords is one of the better shows I’ve watched.

Metal Empire: If you had one wish in the world what would it be, and why?

The Last Surrealist: I wish we could all die together in one uniform push by the universe.

Metal Empire: Thank you for taking the time to speak to Metal Empire about what you do. Do you have any final words, or anything you would like to add?

The Last Surrealist: I appreciate the opportunity and hope this interview isn’t too sardonic for your readers. If anyone would like to check out Post Life Music, go to www.thelastsurrealist.bandcamp.

The post Interview with The Last Surrealist appeared first on Metal Empire.

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from Metal Empire http://www.metalempire.co.uk/2014/07/interview-with-the-last-surrealist/