sábado, 18 de julho de 2015

Befallen with Caramel Snow - An Interview

No dia 15 de junho passado, veio ao mundo o debute do Caramel Snow, projeto de Michael, onde ele compila todas suas composições reunidas no período de 2009 a 2015.

Befallen o nome do álbum é um passeio por dentro do dreampop, indie e shoegazer, sempre com um sútil apelo pop. Elegantemente o Caramel Snow transita entre influências do perfect pop oitentista passando e reverenciando a Sarah Records, e finaliza com ares modernos e atuais.

Um frescor de álbum para ser degustado bem acompanhado preferencialmente.

***** Interview with Caramel Snow *****

Q. When did Caramel Snow start, tell us about the history…
I’m a trained composer, but I was never able to write a decent pop/rock song until about 5 years ago. I just imagined the sound I wanted. So, I wrote a song that I thought would sound like “me,” and it turned out to be “Befallen,” from the new album. Since then, I’ve written and recorded about 60 songs.

Q: Who are your influences?
Mainly Cocteau Twins, Lush, and My Bloody Valentine.

Q. Make a list of 5 albums of all time…
Cocteau Twins - Blue Bell Knoll
My Bloody Valentine - Loveless
Lush - Spooky
Roxy Music - Avalon
Beatles - Magical Mystery Tour

Q. How do you feel playing live?
I have mixed feelings about playing live. It can be thrilling and, oddly, for an introvert like me, it’s one of the few places I am comfortable being myself. But I don’t play out too much, so it’s a lot of work to prepare, and build confidence for a gig. I sound different live than on record. Live, I just use a guitar and a drum machine, so it’s more about conveying the essentials of each song instead of trying to replicate the sound of the record. It’s wonderful to hear people’s questions and comments after a gig.

Q. How do you describe Caramel Snow sounds?
Layers of harmonized, interlocked, shimmering guitars, and laid back vocals with inscrutable lyrics. I strive to achieve a sense of ecstatic beauty.

Q: Tell us about the process of recording the songs?
Usually it only takes me a day to write a complete song, all the lyrics, melody and chord changes (this even amazes me!). Then it takes weeks, even months to record. I work in Ableton Live 8, first constructing a custom drum kit from many hundreds of drum samples, tuning and eq-ing each hit, then laying down a track of guitar chords using Guitar Rig 4. After that I add bass guitar, and layer more guitar parts using my collection of Fenders, Gibsons and Epiphones, and electric 12-string. Towards the end of the process, I always try to record at least one track of Mellotron, for that unique and wobbly, nostalgic ambience.

Q. Which new bands do you recommend?
They’re not really new, but the more contemporary bands I’m impressed with are Crisis Arm, and The Bilinda Butchers. Other somewhat newer artists I constantly listen to are Dum Dum Girls, Colleen Green, and I adore Charli XCX! I recently listened to Sisu, which is Sandra Vu’s band. Sandra plays drums in Dum Dum Girls. She’s a brilliant songwriter, and a fantastic singer; her music is pretty dark, though.

Q: Which bands would you love to make a cover version of?
I choose covers very carefully. It’s redundant for me to cover a song unless I can do something unusual but worthwhile with it. I have recorded songs by Bowie, Dylan, and Charli XCX. I do a cover of “I Heard A Rumour,” by Bananarama that I haven’t recorded yet. I do it as a slow and moody bossa nova instead of the up tempo original.

Q: What´s the plan for the future....
I’m working on a dreamy new song called, “Give Me My Depression Back.” It will be on my Soundcloud page (https://soundcloud.com/caramel-snow) as soon as I finish it. I’m also planning to release another new album very soon. This one will be more jangly, kind of retro, Indiepop, to be called The Ouija Board.

Q: Any parting words?
I am honored to be recognized by your blog! I think you do great work exposing people to beautiful, stunning music. Fans of Shoegaze and Dreampop have an intense need to keep with up with obscure, contemporary practitioners of the genre, such as myself, and the avenues to connect with potential fans are very few, so the service TBTCI provides is critical in fostering connections between artists and new listeners. Thanks!!