Raye / Brutal Resonance: MiXE1 (Pronounced 'Mike's one') is quite an interesting name... what made you come up with it? Has anyone pronounced it wrong in a funny way?

- ''It's supposed to represent a 'mix' of musical elements, hint towards the range of influences from pop to metal but in electronic music. Actually one of my songs was played on an internet radio station and the DJ pronounced it 'Mikes one' and I liked it - the project was a solo project and that sounded close to my name Mike so I ran with it, although I do like the other most common pronunciation Mixy one! Can't think of any more.''


Ok, on to the music! Your music has a lot of emotion in it and some really gripping lyrics (like in "Breathe" & "You saved my life", for example.) Where do you find your inspiration? What inspires you to write?

- ''Thanks Raye - well the main concept of the project is that it's set in a futuristic city called MiXE1, kind of Tokyo/Blade Runner-esque and I just put my feelings and situations within that world which, for me, actually makes it easier to be more personal. Life, love, movies inspire me. Generally I like to keep the lyrics positive! The most recent EP 'Module 02' is a concept release each song is a chapter inspired straight from some happenings in my personal life. Basically my wife (then girlfriend), Amie, was on a student visa and it ran out, she had to go home the day before Valentines day. And we weren't sure what was going to happen! Long story short, basically spent a year February to February doing the long distance thing, went through hell sorting visa stuff (if anyone's ever done it you'll know its not easy - money, emotion, stress, loads of documents). But it all worked out and we got married in April which was amazing! That was such a year and the EP is a snapshot of that year for me and it definitely helped having music as an outlet. Quite a lot of songs around that time are influenced by that (e.g. the free single 'A Spark In The Air' and other tracks which will no doubt be surfacing at some point). Director Duncan Catterall did a great job of capturing those vibes in the music video for 'This Is Not Goodbye' which is a big track on that EP.''

Tell me about the TING video shoot.

"The video came out fantastic. I met the director Duncan Catterall through Steve Fearon (owner of Static Distortion Records/singer of Ghost In The Static) as they had done their video with him. I just thought 'What do I want to do in my musical career? ..Have a music video!' so I spoke to Duncan, ideas flowed, he totally got the vibe and put his stamp on it.. We had four days of shooting at Penkat Studios in Milton Keynes, everyone was great there.I was joined by two of my close friends Lee Towson (who also did the lyric video for 'A Spark In The Air') on guitar and Chris Church (drummer in my previous band) on the drum kit.. And of course, Amie appeared in it as the love interest.. It really couldn?t be anyone else considering what the EP is about! And those were loooong hours of shooting, really exhausting but a great experience to have. How they created the earth quake on the set was quite amusing too! The results show and I'm really proud of that. The next video's budget will be a little lower though!"

What is your favourite song out of everything you have written and / or produced? Why?

- "I don't think I've got just one favourite but an important one would be 'Breathe' from the first EP. It?s the last track I wrote for the EP and is the one that got my name out there in the beginning. One of my other favs is 'A Spark In The Air' which was released for free to celebrate the label Static Distortion Records going live and signing MiXE1. Originally I wrote that track to be a b-side for 'Module 02' - was trying to write an extra song to be a bonus but we agreed ('we' being myself and Steve Fearon) that it was too strong to be left as a bonus track. I just love how it came out, the hooky chorus and one of the tracks I'm most happy about my vocal performance."

Before you were MiXE1, were you involved in any other musical projects? If so, how have they influenced your sound today?

- "Yea a few, the last gigging one was called 'Broken Butterfly X' in which I played guitar and wrote the music (there's probably still some stuff on youtube). Alternative metal band with a female singer, quite Korn-ish with some Japanese rock influences (I used to *really* like jrock and jpop). I wrote 'Module 01' while in this band so it was kind of a reaction to it in a way to try something different - something electronic and doing vox myself.. So it influenced the sound but to do something different and with more positive lyrics. Now that the band is long gone, the heavier influences are coming back into I'm doing with MiXE1 a bit. The other project I'm involved in right now, this isn't a past one but I'll give it a shout out as well, is 'Draconic Elimination Projects Featuring MiXE1' which is a collaboration between myself and Mark Haigh of D.E.P. It's a bit darker than MiXE1 - he handles the music and I handle the vox. It's got this cool dark, electronic, dancey vibe. It's fun coz my fav part about writing is the vocals and Mark is busting out these atmospheric tracks which allow me to explore a darker style of vocal without bringing that onto MiXE1. We released our first EP 'In:Parallel' this year and are now working on an album which is sounding pretty big!"

What bands / artists have influenced MiXE1?

- "Too many to mention really, I'm quite open about music - There's certain qualities I like in song writing and I can find those in lots of different genres. But some names.. Zeromancer, Stabbing Westward, Deftones, Korn, The Cure, Dir en Grey, Oblivion Dust, FAKE?, Smashing Pumpkins, Gary Numan.. Radiohead, Phil Collins, Thursday, Akon, Asking Alexandria, Cradle of Filth? I don't know there's loads and it's quite random."

What programs and / or instruments do you use to create your music?

- "It's very software based in terms of the electronics, I don't use any hardware synths it's all software VST's. I use Sonar as the DAW and a whole host of synths (Omnisphere and Nexus are my go-to programs lately). The guitars - I've now started using amp simulation plugins and playing clean into them to make the sound more controllable (this isn't the case on the first two EPs where guitar was an Amp line-out). I'm either programming the synth stuff or playing out the initial ideas on a small midi keyboard - recently purchased a midi guitar so now it's even easier for my non-keyboardy music brain."

If you could collaborate with any artist or band, who would it be? Why?

- "I've already collaborated with a few acts whom I greatly respect - the current list is a guest vocal on the Ghost In The Static's track 'Lost' (on their album 'Fallout' -- you also may just see a cameo from yours truly in their vid 'Another Day'), Cease2Xist's track 'Still Not Dead' (from 'You Are Expendable') in which I had a lot of fun with Dayve Yates co-writing the vocals and of course the D.E.P. stuff I mentioned before. There are others on the cards as I love collaborating. I'd love to collaborate with Zeromancer as they are one of my all time favs - Alex is prob my favourite singer, and Kim Ljung is one of my fav songwriters so that would be insane."

Is there any remix of your material that really stands out to you? Is there any that you dislike?

- "There's none that I dislike as people have taken the time to actually do a remix and I'm very grateful and appreciative of it :) In the remix release 'Re:Breathe Re:Spark' everyone put their stamp on it and did a fantastic job. My fav remix changes every few days but if you want me to name-check just one? well, in the car this morning I was blasting the Psy'Aviah remix."

Will there be a 'Module 03' ? If so, how soon could we hear some new material?

- "Almost! As soon as I finished writing 'Module 02' I started writing the full-length album which will be called 'Starlit Skin'. I've got a handy arrangement with Lane, the talented mixer who is mixing the album, where I'm sending him a track once I'm done, he's mixing it and doing some additional drum edits, then I send him the next track.. rather than all in one go, which gives me some extra motivation to get cracking and finish the next song's tweaks and fits in nicely with his work busyness. It looks like this will be the last 'solo' album for the foreseeable future as in the midst of finishing up the album, I got the live band sorted.. The stuff they are adding to the songs in the rehearsal room is so good and creative, perfectly fitting, the vibes of everyone as people are so good as well that it feels natural for them to become full band members and get on the recordings (which isn't something I take lightly). So they'll be an announcement about that at some point soon but what this means is ahead of the album, we're going to release a sneaky new EP (Not called 'Module 03') with some new songs which we all are on and had input. It's coming together fast. I'm hoping something will be released by the end of the year or very early 2013, flirting with putting out some clips now to give everyone a preview!"

What do you like to do when you're not producing and writing music?

- " Listen to other music, I'm always listening to music :) What else.. Watching movies, cinema, hanging with friends, visiting different places with Amie. Apart from music I'm generally quite introverted most of the time, I'm happy just being at home relaxing with my wife."

If you could tell your fans one random fact about yourself or MiXE1, what would it be?

- "Hmm.. I started learning violin once! All my music-age is self taught since I got a guitar for Christmas around 2000-2001, never did instrument music lessons in school *except* briefly when I was in primary school, started learning violin ..but quit a few weeks later as I was the only boy there!"

What is the MiXE1 live experience? What can one expect to see?

- "At the moment it's a three-piece - vocals, guitar, live drums and synths/electronics from playback. We haven't performed live yet so we're all very excited about that, it's sounding great in the rehearsal space. Definitely a more aggressive vibe as you would expect on stage. There is the energy of a rock show about it especially with the live drums so will definitely have that electronic-rock vibe. Everyone is great and really nailing their instruments so can't wait!"

Last but not least; If the T.V. show 'Glee' asked if they could cover your material on an episode, would you allow them? Or would that bother you?

- "Haha I kinda want to say yes out of sheer curiosity, just as long as they do the screamy parts too ^^ The Glee thing doesn?t bother me, I don't think they should be in the charts - *that* bothers me - but I don't pay attention to the charts (literally have no clue what is number 1 at the moment). If it attracts more fans and gets the music out to more people, that?s all good. I remember reading some bands had a real problem with their songs being used, can't remember why though! I'm easy going about it.."
MiXE1 interview
October 11, 2012
Brutal Resonance

MiXE1

Oct 2012
Raye / Brutal Resonance: MiXE1 (Pronounced 'Mike's one') is quite an interesting name... what made you come up with it? Has anyone pronounced it wrong in a funny way?

- ''It's supposed to represent a 'mix' of musical elements, hint towards the range of influences from pop to metal but in electronic music. Actually one of my songs was played on an internet radio station and the DJ pronounced it 'Mikes one' and I liked it - the project was a solo project and that sounded close to my name Mike so I ran with it, although I do like the other most common pronunciation Mixy one! Can't think of any more.''


Ok, on to the music! Your music has a lot of emotion in it and some really gripping lyrics (like in "Breathe" & "You saved my life", for example.) Where do you find your inspiration? What inspires you to write?

- ''Thanks Raye - well the main concept of the project is that it's set in a futuristic city called MiXE1, kind of Tokyo/Blade Runner-esque and I just put my feelings and situations within that world which, for me, actually makes it easier to be more personal. Life, love, movies inspire me. Generally I like to keep the lyrics positive! The most recent EP 'Module 02' is a concept release each song is a chapter inspired straight from some happenings in my personal life. Basically my wife (then girlfriend), Amie, was on a student visa and it ran out, she had to go home the day before Valentines day. And we weren't sure what was going to happen! Long story short, basically spent a year February to February doing the long distance thing, went through hell sorting visa stuff (if anyone's ever done it you'll know its not easy - money, emotion, stress, loads of documents). But it all worked out and we got married in April which was amazing! That was such a year and the EP is a snapshot of that year for me and it definitely helped having music as an outlet. Quite a lot of songs around that time are influenced by that (e.g. the free single 'A Spark In The Air' and other tracks which will no doubt be surfacing at some point). Director Duncan Catterall did a great job of capturing those vibes in the music video for 'This Is Not Goodbye' which is a big track on that EP.''

Tell me about the TING video shoot.

"The video came out fantastic. I met the director Duncan Catterall through Steve Fearon (owner of Static Distortion Records/singer of Ghost In The Static) as they had done their video with him. I just thought 'What do I want to do in my musical career? ..Have a music video!' so I spoke to Duncan, ideas flowed, he totally got the vibe and put his stamp on it.. We had four days of shooting at Penkat Studios in Milton Keynes, everyone was great there.I was joined by two of my close friends Lee Towson (who also did the lyric video for 'A Spark In The Air') on guitar and Chris Church (drummer in my previous band) on the drum kit.. And of course, Amie appeared in it as the love interest.. It really couldn?t be anyone else considering what the EP is about! And those were loooong hours of shooting, really exhausting but a great experience to have. How they created the earth quake on the set was quite amusing too! The results show and I'm really proud of that. The next video's budget will be a little lower though!"

What is your favourite song out of everything you have written and / or produced? Why?

- "I don't think I've got just one favourite but an important one would be 'Breathe' from the first EP. It?s the last track I wrote for the EP and is the one that got my name out there in the beginning. One of my other favs is 'A Spark In The Air' which was released for free to celebrate the label Static Distortion Records going live and signing MiXE1. Originally I wrote that track to be a b-side for 'Module 02' - was trying to write an extra song to be a bonus but we agreed ('we' being myself and Steve Fearon) that it was too strong to be left as a bonus track. I just love how it came out, the hooky chorus and one of the tracks I'm most happy about my vocal performance."

Before you were MiXE1, were you involved in any other musical projects? If so, how have they influenced your sound today?

- "Yea a few, the last gigging one was called 'Broken Butterfly X' in which I played guitar and wrote the music (there's probably still some stuff on youtube). Alternative metal band with a female singer, quite Korn-ish with some Japanese rock influences (I used to *really* like jrock and jpop). I wrote 'Module 01' while in this band so it was kind of a reaction to it in a way to try something different - something electronic and doing vox myself.. So it influenced the sound but to do something different and with more positive lyrics. Now that the band is long gone, the heavier influences are coming back into I'm doing with MiXE1 a bit. The other project I'm involved in right now, this isn't a past one but I'll give it a shout out as well, is 'Draconic Elimination Projects Featuring MiXE1' which is a collaboration between myself and Mark Haigh of D.E.P. It's a bit darker than MiXE1 - he handles the music and I handle the vox. It's got this cool dark, electronic, dancey vibe. It's fun coz my fav part about writing is the vocals and Mark is busting out these atmospheric tracks which allow me to explore a darker style of vocal without bringing that onto MiXE1. We released our first EP 'In:Parallel' this year and are now working on an album which is sounding pretty big!"

What bands / artists have influenced MiXE1?

- "Too many to mention really, I'm quite open about music - There's certain qualities I like in song writing and I can find those in lots of different genres. But some names.. Zeromancer, Stabbing Westward, Deftones, Korn, The Cure, Dir en Grey, Oblivion Dust, FAKE?, Smashing Pumpkins, Gary Numan.. Radiohead, Phil Collins, Thursday, Akon, Asking Alexandria, Cradle of Filth? I don't know there's loads and it's quite random."

What programs and / or instruments do you use to create your music?

- "It's very software based in terms of the electronics, I don't use any hardware synths it's all software VST's. I use Sonar as the DAW and a whole host of synths (Omnisphere and Nexus are my go-to programs lately). The guitars - I've now started using amp simulation plugins and playing clean into them to make the sound more controllable (this isn't the case on the first two EPs where guitar was an Amp line-out). I'm either programming the synth stuff or playing out the initial ideas on a small midi keyboard - recently purchased a midi guitar so now it's even easier for my non-keyboardy music brain."

If you could collaborate with any artist or band, who would it be? Why?

- "I've already collaborated with a few acts whom I greatly respect - the current list is a guest vocal on the Ghost In The Static's track 'Lost' (on their album 'Fallout' -- you also may just see a cameo from yours truly in their vid 'Another Day'), Cease2Xist's track 'Still Not Dead' (from 'You Are Expendable') in which I had a lot of fun with Dayve Yates co-writing the vocals and of course the D.E.P. stuff I mentioned before. There are others on the cards as I love collaborating. I'd love to collaborate with Zeromancer as they are one of my all time favs - Alex is prob my favourite singer, and Kim Ljung is one of my fav songwriters so that would be insane."

Is there any remix of your material that really stands out to you? Is there any that you dislike?

- "There's none that I dislike as people have taken the time to actually do a remix and I'm very grateful and appreciative of it :) In the remix release 'Re:Breathe Re:Spark' everyone put their stamp on it and did a fantastic job. My fav remix changes every few days but if you want me to name-check just one? well, in the car this morning I was blasting the Psy'Aviah remix."

Will there be a 'Module 03' ? If so, how soon could we hear some new material?

- "Almost! As soon as I finished writing 'Module 02' I started writing the full-length album which will be called 'Starlit Skin'. I've got a handy arrangement with Lane, the talented mixer who is mixing the album, where I'm sending him a track once I'm done, he's mixing it and doing some additional drum edits, then I send him the next track.. rather than all in one go, which gives me some extra motivation to get cracking and finish the next song's tweaks and fits in nicely with his work busyness. It looks like this will be the last 'solo' album for the foreseeable future as in the midst of finishing up the album, I got the live band sorted.. The stuff they are adding to the songs in the rehearsal room is so good and creative, perfectly fitting, the vibes of everyone as people are so good as well that it feels natural for them to become full band members and get on the recordings (which isn't something I take lightly). So they'll be an announcement about that at some point soon but what this means is ahead of the album, we're going to release a sneaky new EP (Not called 'Module 03') with some new songs which we all are on and had input. It's coming together fast. I'm hoping something will be released by the end of the year or very early 2013, flirting with putting out some clips now to give everyone a preview!"

What do you like to do when you're not producing and writing music?

- " Listen to other music, I'm always listening to music :) What else.. Watching movies, cinema, hanging with friends, visiting different places with Amie. Apart from music I'm generally quite introverted most of the time, I'm happy just being at home relaxing with my wife."

If you could tell your fans one random fact about yourself or MiXE1, what would it be?

- "Hmm.. I started learning violin once! All my music-age is self taught since I got a guitar for Christmas around 2000-2001, never did instrument music lessons in school *except* briefly when I was in primary school, started learning violin ..but quit a few weeks later as I was the only boy there!"

What is the MiXE1 live experience? What can one expect to see?

- "At the moment it's a three-piece - vocals, guitar, live drums and synths/electronics from playback. We haven't performed live yet so we're all very excited about that, it's sounding great in the rehearsal space. Definitely a more aggressive vibe as you would expect on stage. There is the energy of a rock show about it especially with the live drums so will definitely have that electronic-rock vibe. Everyone is great and really nailing their instruments so can't wait!"

Last but not least; If the T.V. show 'Glee' asked if they could cover your material on an episode, would you allow them? Or would that bother you?

- "Haha I kinda want to say yes out of sheer curiosity, just as long as they do the screamy parts too ^^ The Glee thing doesn?t bother me, I don't think they should be in the charts - *that* bothers me - but I don't pay attention to the charts (literally have no clue what is number 1 at the moment). If it attracts more fans and gets the music out to more people, that?s all good. I remember reading some bands had a real problem with their songs being used, can't remember why though! I'm easy going about it.."
Oct 11 2012

Raye Albater

info@brutalresonance.com
Writer and contributor on Brutal Resonance

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Started in spring 2009, Brutal Resonance quickly grew from a Swedish based netzine into an established International zine of the highest standard.

We cover genres like Synthpop, EBM, Industrial, Dark Ambient, Neofolk, Darkwave, Noise and all their sub- and similar genres.

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