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?
My name is Michael and I formed Fearpassage in 2004 officially. As far as composing.... Let's see....I think I got my first guitar in 1993 and I spent a few years toiling around with it before moving to synths. Somewhere around 1995 I got my first synth, a Korg Trinity. Since then, I've had a rotating gear list...Always been bitten by the gear lust bug.
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 have been a big fan of 80's music, bands like The Cure, Depeche Mode, Peter Murphy, The Smiths and Morrisey, Pet Shop Boys, Front 242, Ministry, Skinny Puppy, Front Line Assembly, My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult and the like.
I would say in the mid to late 90's, when much more of the European G/I was just starting over here to get popular in the clubs moved me into more electronic mindset. Some bands like, Project Pitchfork, Leatherstrip, Wolfsheim, Apop, VnV Nation, Velvet Acid Christ, Wumpscut, In Strict Confidence among others.
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?
Genres are impossible to keep up with, I have never tried to tie things down if possible. Though the years people would ask, "what kind of music do you make" and I would always have a tough time answering. Just would come down to a, "it's dark electronic... I guess?" Labels are restricting but at the same time comfortable for people. For some reason people in general need to put the square peg in the square hole, if it doesn't fit then there is something wrong with the peg.
Is electronic music where you started making music? Or did you have previous musical background or experience before hand? If so does/did your previous musical experience affect your electronic compositions?
While I started with guitar, I was never proficient enough to start writing songs. All composing has been electronic based.
Would you say that your choice to pursue music has changed your life since you started? Would you say that creativity has evolved you spiritually, emotionally, or logically? What are some of the biggest challenges you have had to overcome in your musical career?
It has become part of my being, essential at times to keep my sanity. It really is a therapy for me, having social anxiety music has helped me relate things that I can't speak on.
What would you say are your favorite themes and topics to write about? What draws you to those themes?
Most of the Fearpassage songs are written directly from personal experiences. Being someone who typically internalizes emotions and thoughts, having a psychiatrist such as song writing has kept me sane at times.
Are there any particular instruments, programs, or effects that you would say are vital to you making music? If so, is there a reason in particular that draws you to said creative outlet?
In the old days it was obviously synthesizers and recording hardware, while now computers and software is far better then the early days it's silly not to take advantage of them. I still own some hardware but a bulk nowadays is written with soft synths and Logic Pro.
Other than what you currently produce, what other sorts of genres, instruments, and sounds would you like to use in the future? Are there any people you would like to collaborate with in the future artistically, musically, or socially?
I wouldn't say any other genres interest me, I kind of slide somewhere between Industrial, goth, dark electro(to try to use genre titles lol).
As far as collaborations....I get so much anxiety in those situations that I tend to always come back to working alone.
Do you have any other musical projects that you are involved with, or do you have any other musicians or artists that you collaborate with in some capacity? If you could collaborate with any musician or artist, dead or alive, who would it be? And what in particular draws you to want to collaborate with them?
I have no time for any other projects actually, life is very full for me between work and family.
I suppose if I had to pick a few; The Cure, In Strict Confidence or Project Pitchfork
When it comes to non-musical media, what do you find yourself most inspired by, and what about it draws you to it as a source of inspiration? Do you participate in the gaming world? Avid reader perhaps? Maybe cinema fan? Combination of some lol?
I'm not in the gaming world or an avid reader(while it would do my mind good). I do enjoy movies and favorite visual artist is HH Giger. I in fact have a full sleeve of Giger pieces.
Have you had any particular moment(s) that you would like to share, that you would consider to be a crowning achievement in your musical career so far, or moments that you would say truly continue to inspire you to pursue your artistic path?
I suppose it would be having a remix I did for Attrition appear on his album. While I'm not a fan of doing remixes, Martin(Attrition) approving mine for his album was truly that much more of a treat.
What do you see in the near, and far, future for your creative output?
I have the third album ready for the most part and was hoping to catch onto a new label to release it. Probably will offer remix opportunities before release.
When it comes to your live show, how would you describe yourself thematically and visually? Are you an energy and audience driven band in the live atmosphere? Or would you consider yourself to be more thematic or presentation oriented?
Once on stage I have a lot of energy regardless of the crowd size. While I have social anxiety, performing is almost an out of body experience. Just like when I grew up listening to music and any big music fan will understand you get overtaken by the music. I still enjoy dancing because of that, just getting lost in music is a personal getaway for a few minutes.
Thank you so much for participating in this episode of Infidel Interview. Any parting words for your fans, or my audience?
Just want to thank you all for having me and I appreciate yourself, fans and your audience more then you can imagine. The little things can mean so much, and gives hope that perhaps I can help to reach souls that feel the same as mine.
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