Let's start with some history, as you guys are still a young band and still haven't suffered enough from the same old questions?. How did you two meet? Give us a small background of the whole Surgyn experience.
- ''We met when a millionaire offered us ten thousand dollars (each) to agree to be locked in a large, spooky rented house overnight with him and his wife. Actually, we just lied, that's the plot of House on Haunted Hill. We've answered that question too many times.''

Over the course of a mere two years and half, Surgyn went from being a total newcomer to the small British scene to its most promising band: how did you guys achieve it? Is it due to the fact the visual/audio package is just too good, or someone was crucial in helping you getting more exposure in a scene that constantly struggles for it?
- "We entered the scene with a goal - to inject a heavy dose of much needed glamour and theatre to a scene that seemed to be sorely lacking in the performance department, without compromising the quality of the music. We've managed to sculpt a conceptual world for the band's content to exist within. People pay to see a performance and we're confident that we can and do deliver in that regard. We've said it before and we'll say it again - you can't just be a band these days; you have to be a brand."

Speaking again of the intensive visual aspect of the project: what is the actual connection between it and the music you make? Do you truly think that "aesthetics are everything"?
- "Aesthetics may not be everything but when it comes to being an artist or band they certainly count for a lot. In these instances, you are a product. Therefore effective use of aesthetics has a lot to answer for when it comes to being successful. We're very conscious of crafting all the elements of our work (and ourselves) to be effective together. That is, the music, words and aesthetic - both in terms of the advertising design and the consideration of our personal appearance. Core themes that have really defined us as a band to this point are vanity, glamour and, more recently, fame. We relate the decadence and excess of these themes and apply it to ourselves, quite literally, using excessive makeup and flamboyant stage outfits to embody what we seek to explore."

Don't you think that you could be easily dismissed as this scene's Lady Gaga, especially in the light of the new single "Feed Me Fame"? That is, all looks and no substance? Or there is more to it? Explain it for the lazy people out there that don't stop to actually read the lyrics?
- "Whether individuals appreciate us aesthetically, musically or both, we're satisfied. We would, however, certainly encourage people to look past the obvious. At the same time, as the themes that we challenge and explore include vanity, beauty, glamour and fame, our tongues are so firmly pressed our cheeks it hurts."

How has been the reaction to "Feed Me Fame" so far? Tell us of the creative process that brought you from the harsher sounds of "Vanity" to the seemingly more melodic (and way better, if you ask me) approach of this new single.
- "We're a lot less angry than we were when writing "Vanity". We've matured a lot, both as people and artists, since writing that album and we're beginning to explore new sides of our creativity. The most obvious change, as mentioned, is the more prominent consideration of melody. This is showing with the vocals in particular. Our voices are developing all the time and we're really excited for that to begin to reflect in the material. In terms of the music itself, new beat patterns, structures and overall styles are beginning to emerge. We're finally coming into our own."


So, when are we actually going to see the new album? What's your plans for it? Will we get another single, remixes, a proper video maybe?
- "The album is currently still being written. We're more than half way now. There's been a lot going on in our lives outside of the band which has made it difficult to commit to a strict writing schedule, including university commitments etc. It will be done when it's done. Another single may well be on the cards."


Do you have a favorite song, a sort of "best child", among the upcomin ones? Come on, spill some beans and give us a little preview!
- ""Green Heart" is a song from the new crop that is consistently getting positive feedback from the crowd and it's a song that we both personally see as being strong and in-keeping with our new direction. This is definitely the track that has made the most use of our singing voices so far which is certainly something that you can expect to hear more of in other new material. Of course, we love "Feed Me Fame", too."


Despite being still a newcomers, you guys already toured the UK everywhere supporting pretty much all the big names of the scene: what's your favourite memory of all that crazy tour life? Is it truly glamorous as it would seem, or the harsh reality is way different?
- "Daniel Graves from Aesthetic Perfection got it right when he said that touring is the "best and worst experience of your life." Touring is tiring, stressful and sometimes downright awful, but this is of course referring to everything but the glamorous part - the performances. The vast majority of the time, the performances more than make up for the stresses of everything else. That's the pay-off and the reason why we can't stop. We're very grateful to have an audience who enjoy what we do and we love meeting them on our travels. One of the most fun tour experiences was the week-long Pacman tournament on the Modulate tour bus last year. We don't like to talk about who won. It gets heated quite quickly."

One of those shows was supporting a very famous drag queen, a gig absolutely outside the industrial scene. How was that experience? Would you say that the limelight in the gay scene is friendlier, even just straight "better" than the industrial ghetto?
- "Supporting Sharon Needles was a fantastic opportunity to test ourselves and step outside our usual comfort zone. The crowd responded really well to our performance and we felt that it was a major step in the right direction for a band that's largely associated with the industrial scene. While we certainly know where our core audience lies, we don't like being confined to genres or scenes. We're in the very fortunate position of having a constantly evolving sound and developed aesthetic which allows us to appeal to a wide variety of people and that's really exciting. We constantly seek out new audiences as this really helps to refine our craft and grow as performers. Without comparing too rigidly to other audiences, the response from the gay scene was amazing. I think it would be safe to assume that their enthusiasm was largely in response to our image as we were sure to ramp up the drag influence for the evening. The 'stage' was actually a light-up runway with a strip pole at the end. Ross made extensive use of this throughout the performance."

And how about shows outside the UK? How different was your Summer Darkness experience in The Netherlands as opposed of playing your own country?
- "Being offered the opportunity to perform at Summer Darkness was wonderful and we really enjoyed it. There was certainly a noticeable difference in the manner of the crowd over there in comparison to the UK - the UK audience tend to be more a lot more boisterous, especially in Scotland. This could be a lot more to do with familiarity than the difference between countries but, judging by hearing the experiences of bands from further afar who tour over here, the UK does seem to have a reputation for wild crowds. This is something we're very proud of."

I know that Ross is toying with a side-project called Zealous Veil, while Ollie is thinking about lending his creative linguistic skills to a new band focused on the Lovecraftian mythos. Can you guys tell us more about it?
- "Zealous Veil is Ross' solo project that was started in 2005 and was his first real venture into the production of electronic music. Unlike Surgyn, Zealous Veil (to date) has been instrumental and in terms of sound is much more orchestral/darkwave. Since the formation of Surgyn, Zealous Veil has taken a back seat but recently Ross has felt the urge to experiment more again under the title. With Surgyn remaining the priority at the moment however it's expected that these experiments will remain casual for the time being and no immediate official relaunch of the project is planned, but certainly on the cards for the future. In the meantime, Ollie's occasional work in writing in the Lovecraftian style, coupled with his outspoken love of the mythos has resulted in the possibility of there being a new side project being born in collaboration with others artists such as our very own interviewer here, Marco Visconti of XP8. While the project is very much still at an early and conceptual stage, there is the potential for great things some time in the future."

And here we are, the point when the interviewer usually tries to wrap it up asking the band for some "last words". I'd rather ask you: when did you lose your virginity?
- "We've been saving ourselves for you, Marco."
Surgyn interview
July 24, 2013
Brutal Resonance

Surgyn

Jul 2013
Let's start with some history, as you guys are still a young band and still haven't suffered enough from the same old questions?. How did you two meet? Give us a small background of the whole Surgyn experience.
- ''We met when a millionaire offered us ten thousand dollars (each) to agree to be locked in a large, spooky rented house overnight with him and his wife. Actually, we just lied, that's the plot of House on Haunted Hill. We've answered that question too many times.''

Over the course of a mere two years and half, Surgyn went from being a total newcomer to the small British scene to its most promising band: how did you guys achieve it? Is it due to the fact the visual/audio package is just too good, or someone was crucial in helping you getting more exposure in a scene that constantly struggles for it?
- "We entered the scene with a goal - to inject a heavy dose of much needed glamour and theatre to a scene that seemed to be sorely lacking in the performance department, without compromising the quality of the music. We've managed to sculpt a conceptual world for the band's content to exist within. People pay to see a performance and we're confident that we can and do deliver in that regard. We've said it before and we'll say it again - you can't just be a band these days; you have to be a brand."

Speaking again of the intensive visual aspect of the project: what is the actual connection between it and the music you make? Do you truly think that "aesthetics are everything"?
- "Aesthetics may not be everything but when it comes to being an artist or band they certainly count for a lot. In these instances, you are a product. Therefore effective use of aesthetics has a lot to answer for when it comes to being successful. We're very conscious of crafting all the elements of our work (and ourselves) to be effective together. That is, the music, words and aesthetic - both in terms of the advertising design and the consideration of our personal appearance. Core themes that have really defined us as a band to this point are vanity, glamour and, more recently, fame. We relate the decadence and excess of these themes and apply it to ourselves, quite literally, using excessive makeup and flamboyant stage outfits to embody what we seek to explore."

Don't you think that you could be easily dismissed as this scene's Lady Gaga, especially in the light of the new single "Feed Me Fame"? That is, all looks and no substance? Or there is more to it? Explain it for the lazy people out there that don't stop to actually read the lyrics?
- "Whether individuals appreciate us aesthetically, musically or both, we're satisfied. We would, however, certainly encourage people to look past the obvious. At the same time, as the themes that we challenge and explore include vanity, beauty, glamour and fame, our tongues are so firmly pressed our cheeks it hurts."

How has been the reaction to "Feed Me Fame" so far? Tell us of the creative process that brought you from the harsher sounds of "Vanity" to the seemingly more melodic (and way better, if you ask me) approach of this new single.
- "We're a lot less angry than we were when writing "Vanity". We've matured a lot, both as people and artists, since writing that album and we're beginning to explore new sides of our creativity. The most obvious change, as mentioned, is the more prominent consideration of melody. This is showing with the vocals in particular. Our voices are developing all the time and we're really excited for that to begin to reflect in the material. In terms of the music itself, new beat patterns, structures and overall styles are beginning to emerge. We're finally coming into our own."


So, when are we actually going to see the new album? What's your plans for it? Will we get another single, remixes, a proper video maybe?
- "The album is currently still being written. We're more than half way now. There's been a lot going on in our lives outside of the band which has made it difficult to commit to a strict writing schedule, including university commitments etc. It will be done when it's done. Another single may well be on the cards."


Do you have a favorite song, a sort of "best child", among the upcomin ones? Come on, spill some beans and give us a little preview!
- ""Green Heart" is a song from the new crop that is consistently getting positive feedback from the crowd and it's a song that we both personally see as being strong and in-keeping with our new direction. This is definitely the track that has made the most use of our singing voices so far which is certainly something that you can expect to hear more of in other new material. Of course, we love "Feed Me Fame", too."


Despite being still a newcomers, you guys already toured the UK everywhere supporting pretty much all the big names of the scene: what's your favourite memory of all that crazy tour life? Is it truly glamorous as it would seem, or the harsh reality is way different?
- "Daniel Graves from Aesthetic Perfection got it right when he said that touring is the "best and worst experience of your life." Touring is tiring, stressful and sometimes downright awful, but this is of course referring to everything but the glamorous part - the performances. The vast majority of the time, the performances more than make up for the stresses of everything else. That's the pay-off and the reason why we can't stop. We're very grateful to have an audience who enjoy what we do and we love meeting them on our travels. One of the most fun tour experiences was the week-long Pacman tournament on the Modulate tour bus last year. We don't like to talk about who won. It gets heated quite quickly."

One of those shows was supporting a very famous drag queen, a gig absolutely outside the industrial scene. How was that experience? Would you say that the limelight in the gay scene is friendlier, even just straight "better" than the industrial ghetto?
- "Supporting Sharon Needles was a fantastic opportunity to test ourselves and step outside our usual comfort zone. The crowd responded really well to our performance and we felt that it was a major step in the right direction for a band that's largely associated with the industrial scene. While we certainly know where our core audience lies, we don't like being confined to genres or scenes. We're in the very fortunate position of having a constantly evolving sound and developed aesthetic which allows us to appeal to a wide variety of people and that's really exciting. We constantly seek out new audiences as this really helps to refine our craft and grow as performers. Without comparing too rigidly to other audiences, the response from the gay scene was amazing. I think it would be safe to assume that their enthusiasm was largely in response to our image as we were sure to ramp up the drag influence for the evening. The 'stage' was actually a light-up runway with a strip pole at the end. Ross made extensive use of this throughout the performance."

And how about shows outside the UK? How different was your Summer Darkness experience in The Netherlands as opposed of playing your own country?
- "Being offered the opportunity to perform at Summer Darkness was wonderful and we really enjoyed it. There was certainly a noticeable difference in the manner of the crowd over there in comparison to the UK - the UK audience tend to be more a lot more boisterous, especially in Scotland. This could be a lot more to do with familiarity than the difference between countries but, judging by hearing the experiences of bands from further afar who tour over here, the UK does seem to have a reputation for wild crowds. This is something we're very proud of."

I know that Ross is toying with a side-project called Zealous Veil, while Ollie is thinking about lending his creative linguistic skills to a new band focused on the Lovecraftian mythos. Can you guys tell us more about it?
- "Zealous Veil is Ross' solo project that was started in 2005 and was his first real venture into the production of electronic music. Unlike Surgyn, Zealous Veil (to date) has been instrumental and in terms of sound is much more orchestral/darkwave. Since the formation of Surgyn, Zealous Veil has taken a back seat but recently Ross has felt the urge to experiment more again under the title. With Surgyn remaining the priority at the moment however it's expected that these experiments will remain casual for the time being and no immediate official relaunch of the project is planned, but certainly on the cards for the future. In the meantime, Ollie's occasional work in writing in the Lovecraftian style, coupled with his outspoken love of the mythos has resulted in the possibility of there being a new side project being born in collaboration with others artists such as our very own interviewer here, Marco Visconti of XP8. While the project is very much still at an early and conceptual stage, there is the potential for great things some time in the future."

And here we are, the point when the interviewer usually tries to wrap it up asking the band for some "last words". I'd rather ask you: when did you lose your virginity?
- "We've been saving ourselves for you, Marco."
Jul 24 2013

Marco Visconti

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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