Solid State: Infidel Interview #6

First I just want to thank you for participating in this edition of Infidel Interviews. With this interview let's just start with a bit about yourself. Where are you from, how old are you, and how long have you been making music for?

I was born and raised in a small town called Mierlo, in the Netherlands and I moved to the US in 1996. I currently live in Washington state and have been here since 2000. I'm 34 and have been active with making music since I was 18.

When you first started making music, was there a particular sound or artistic/musical influence that you would say was your biggest inspiration to start pursuing the creative path yourself? What led you to electronic music, particularly the heavier kinds of it?

I'm into a lot of different styles of music, so it's hard to pinpoint if there was just one particular style or sound that influenced me, since so many things function as an inspiration. I'm equally into electronic music as well as things like metal, hip hop, funk, classical, experimental etc, so I take influences from all those things to construct my own music. What led me to electronic music was the vast possibilities of it, it's limitless, especially with today's technology. You can sculpt your own sounds and program things in a way that sound almost alien, there are no borders. I am drawn more to aggressive music in general, so that also helped with influencing the style of music I do. But if I had to pick some artists that are a big inspiration I would say Skinny Puppy, Venetian Snares, Mike Patton, Devin Townsend, Coil, Dillinger Escape Plan, Aphex Twin, Wu-Tang Clan, Godflesh, Bong-Ra,1990's Digital Hardcore, and much more. Everything I hear is an influence one way or another.

What genres of music would you consider yourself to be the most active in, or influenced by? What are your thoughts on genres in general? Do you find them creatively helpful as a template to work with? Or do you find them restricting? Or possibly somewhere in between? Now that the internet has caused so much crossover in music, would you even say genre labels are relevant any more?

If I had to tag myself into any kind of genres, I'd say I probably fit in somewhere between Breakcore, Industrial and Drum&Bass, but I usually tell people I make "heavy electronic music" or "Cyberpunk". They are non-descriptive, yet they paint a certain image. There are so many genres and sub-genres that it's hard to keep track of what is considered what style, when essentially they all sound very similar to each other, especially in the electronic scene. I can't tell a Neurofunk track from a Drumstep track, to me it's just Drum&Bass. Basic genres help with labeling if you're looking for a particular sound or a way to describe yourself to people, but like I said I think we've gone a bit overboard with it. I think it's more of a "flavor of the week" approach and an attempt to make yourself stand out from the rest. I tried to stay more on top of it in the past, but mostly I just can't be bothered with that shit anymore.