A Cozy Fireside Chat with SLIGHTER

Greetings Sounds and Shadows family! It’s been a while. I’m currently shouting through the ether of fatherhood to get this interview to your head holes today and I have a very special guest. I was able to catch up with Colin Cameron of SLIGHTER and do I top tit interview with him. You know him, You love him and you wish he was your fuckin’ boyfriend.

He’s too fast for average film exposure times

EL: So ill try and get all the arbitrary music interview stuff out of the way. How did you get your start in music and made you get into industrial?

CC: Like most I gravitated towards music really young, I did my first ‘garage bands’ with my friends in middle school. Then I ended up going to high school in the middle-of-nowhere Colorado when I discovered Front Line Assembly, Chemlab, KMFDM, God Lives Underwater, and I didn’t really know that idea or whatever of calling it “Industrial”. Record shops were small and didn’t file under that. And there wasn’t a scene or more than just me and a couple of friends listening to that stuff. I tend to gravitate to darker and atmospheric stuff, so I think that is what draws me to any music that fits that.

EL: As far as the underground scene goes, I’d probably rate you as one of the best producers out there in the scene. Your mixes are unique in that you accomplish a very hard dance floor attack but there are these layers of soft ambience in your tracks. Its like a perfect yon and yang and I think it sets you apart. Now that I’m done gushing I want to ask, what are some of your influences out side of the general industrial/electronic genres that you incorporate into your style?

CC: Thanks for saying that, even though I might not agree with you! Ha! Really the biggest influences on my work as Slighter are film scores. I think that’s where the atmospheric and ambient side of my tracks come from. Really enjoy Sci-Fi and strange films with great scores, that’s where I go to get inspiration to write again.

EL: What is your process when you sit down to start working on a remix.

CC: With remixes, I’m usually firstly deciding what way I want to take it, and that direction I get from the original song. If there’s something I think could go real 4-on-the-floor Techno, then I’ll go there. If it’s something I can do Drum & Bass crazy edits and glitch to, I’ll go there. Then the fun part is taking everything they give me, and fucking it all up into a new ‘palette’ I can make a new version with. I’m very big on incorporating much of the original, even if it is thrown through a 20 step evolution via sound design.

EL: Marry, Fuck, Kill: Mr. Goodbar, 3 musketeers, and the yellow m&m?

CC: Ha! I think all three are quite trash as far as candy goes. So I’d elope with a box of Nerds and GTFO!

(I would like to point out that Colin answered this incorrectly. The answer we were looking for was: Marry Mr. Goodbar, Kill the Three Musketeers, and Fuck the yellow M&M)

EL: I know you fancy yourself as a multi instrumentalist, what is your favorite instrument to play and what instrument do you think you’re the best at playing?

CC: I hate that term “multi-instrumentalist” because it wreaks in self aggrandizing. I’m a piss poor player of a lot of things, but I get instruments to bend to my will, so to speak that makes it artful. I guess I would say, I play a MEAN computer. 🙂

VOID Releases on June 4th

EL: I got a chance to listen to your new album (coming out June 4th btw) and I was pleasantly surprised. In general, how important do you think it is for an artist to evolve their sound?

CC: I think it depends on the musician, if you’re a performer and want to play shows and entertain your whole career, you have to be careful to not loose those fans who want you to ‘shut up and play the hits’ as it were. That’s not me at all. I’m of the side that looks at music as an art form, and as such my work ethic and style musically would be equated to watching a painter paint a painting. So in this sense, I find it very important to treat my art as evolutionary, as much as it is to hit on clever musical necessities, or formalities of electronic music for a dance floor requirements, I want to push my creativity with each new piece.

EL: What is your favorite piece of studio gear? Also, what’s a piece of gear that you regret selling?

CC: I’ve not been able to part with any of my gear! I always have that “oh you’ll need it for something” so I still even have my shitty Digitech pedals from high school. I think my favorite kit these days is everything that Ivo at Glitchmachines makes. Highly inventive plugins, makes for a lot of fun with sound design.

EL: I like to end my interviews with a desert island scenario question. So you’re stranded on a desert island, you have 3 albums, 1 movie, 1 complete TV series on DVD and an unlimited supply of 1 breakfast cereal. What do you pick

CC: The 3 albums would be: Dubnobasswithmyheadman by Underworld, K&D Sessions from Kruder and Dorfmeister, and Formless from Gridlock. Film would be: James Gunn’s Slither. TV series: X-Files because there’s an almost endless amount of those episodes. Cereal: Am I getting milk? Because if not, I’m going Chex, if I am, get me those Fruit Loops and I’ll be pretty content.

SLIGHTER drops VOID on June 6th, so you better keep your peepers peeled for it. Or Else

Interview with Bill Weedmark by Eddie LaFlash

Good whatever time of day it is that you’re reading this! Ken said I could interview anybody in the whole wide inner circle of industrial music so I thought long and hard and chose homeboy Bill Weedmark. If you’re on facebook at all you’ve definitely seen him at the forefront of many of the scene pages. I took a deep dive skinny dipping session with our lovable friend here and asked him the hard pressing questions that’s on everyone’s minds.

EL: You seem to have your finger on the pulse of the scene, you mod several band groups (OMF for 3teeth, Dreadfully Possessed for GosT, Nuclear Family for Nuclear*Sun and others, and the Anti-Hearts for Night Club). How THE FUCK have you made these connections and how do you have the mental strength to handle all of these groups?

BW: Kind of random chance really, but it all ties back to 3teeth and OMF. I got to know those guys online a little bit after they opened for Tool…I loved their stuff, got hooked, and created a subreddit for them. That ended up leading to modding OMF when it got big enough to need a cat herder, which is where I got to know some of the other artists from chatting with them in there. Then I met up with some of them on tour and became friends and it just kind of happened organically after that.

It’s surprisingly not as much work as you’d think. There are so many cool, progressive, amazing people in this music scene, so for the most part these groups are awesome communities that lift each other up and share art and support each other. I don’t have the patience for the bickering and drama in groups so I don’t get involved with groups that have a lot of that.

Probably Bill Weedmark

EL: What do you look for in a group that you’re hearing and interacting with for the first time? How should aspiring bands interact with their fans to ensure they hang onto them for life?

BW: Passion is key. I don’t personally care if an artist has the best production values or the biggest budget, I just want to hear in their work that it matters to them. That’s kind of intangible and subjective, but it’s a gut feeling of “Oh yeah, they love doing this.” That will show through in everything they do. I’m also much more likely to check an artist out based on good word of mouth from other people in music groups, too.

As far as fan interaction, I think authenticity is the most important thing. All of the newer artists which have become big favorites of mine are themselves online. They’re somewhat active in groups or on their own pages, they answer questions, stay moderately accessible. It’s a tough balance I think and it takes time, and not everyone has the free time for it and not everyone wants to be open or accessible. But just engaging like a human being rather than spamming links to your stuff once a day at noon and never TALKING to people will always get me to pay attention, and it seems to build a more genuine connection with the fans. It doesn’t have to be a daily thing, but just popping around and being a person and even chatting about a movie or something is more engaging than people realize.

EL: Now with the industrial scene (and any scene for that matter) aesthetic seems to play a big role in terms of fitting in. Whether it be robot beep boop looks or just a heavy goth appearance. Are there any tropes and clichés in this scene that makes you role your eyes? And do you think looks are just as important as the product being released by a band?

BW: I’m very much over the edgy “let’s be offensive for attention” trend that seemed to be big in the 90s/00s, like adopting pseudo-fascist clothes and logos, but thankfully that’s dying off. But as long as it’s not an offensive appearance, I don’t think looks alone are hugely important. It’s cool to have a unique look but I’d rather have a unique sound or voice to listen to. Tristan Shone of Author & Punisher is usually just wearing jeans and a t-shirt on stage but no one would deny that he’s got a unique aesthetic and sound. I think the logos, art, and iconography around an artist are more important than an on-stage aesthetic, especially right now with touring being dead and global audiences…people will find an artist online way before they’ll find them at a show. But you can’t go wrong with black and leather and rivets, can you?

EL: What got you into industrial music?

BW: The Mortal Kombat soundtrack! I grew up in the sticks and didn’t even know what industrial music was back in 1995 but that soundtrack set the stage for my musical taste. Gravity Kills, KMFDM, Fear Factory…that soundtrack is still awesome. Then a few years later The Fragile came out and I fell down a huge rabbit hole of everything NIN, everyone who ever worked with or toured with NIN, Trent’s infuences, and that was that. Led me to Ministry and Skinny Puppy and PIG and on and on.

EL: Do you have any experience playing an instrument? If so, how many sublime songs can you play?

BW: I do! I play bass, and I think I’m actually pretty good at it. My problem is I can’t WRITE music for shit, but I can learn new songs fast. I’d probably be a good session bassist because I’m good at picking things up and playing them right but suck at being creative and have no ego. I was also a pretty bad-ass trombone player back in the day and rocked a trombone solo in a polka song in high school band. I think that was my musical peak. And I currently know zero Sublime songs but I’m pretty sure I still remember the Meow Mix theme, does that count? ‘Cuz it’s what I got.

EL: Fuck Combos

BW: Combo brand stuffed-pretzels by the Mars Corporation are a tasty snack, available in multiple flavor varieties. Pepperoni Pizza is my personal favorite but there’s a wide selection to choose from, and I hear that guy from Decent News LOVES them.

Literal Shit

EL: Alright, desert island scenario. So you’re stranded on a desert island, you have 3 albums, 2 movies, 1 complete TV series on DVD and an unlimited supply of 1 breakfast cereal. What do you pick?

BW: Three albums…definitely The Fragile by Nine Inch Nails. Then I guess Shutdown.exe by 3teeth and Is There Anybody Out There? The Wall Live by Pink Floyd. Cheat a bit and take two double albums. Movie picks would be The Terminator and Heat, I’m a sucker for great shoot-out scenes. TV series, maybe recency-bias but I’m going with The Expanse. And Honey Comb. Honey Comb is delicious, and their mascot is a cracked-out ball of fur that somehow made it past the concept stage, which is incredible.

EL: Let’s say you have Charles Barkley money and you’re putting together a festival. Pick 3 headliners and 7 supporting acts. Also what energy drink is sponsoring this event?

BW: Headliners are Nine Inch Nails, Rammstein, and Duran Duran. Support is Gary Numan, 3teeth, PIG, Stabbing Westward, Curse Mackey, HEALTH and GosT. Sponsored by Powerthirst, they have GRATUITOUS AMOUNTS OF ENERGY. Just like this festival.

“I took out my credit card to see you giving head” Male Tears review by Eddie LaFlash

Now that a have your attention (all credit to my favorite lyric in this album), welcome! Today I’ll be reviewing an album that I instantly wanted to sink my wiener into as soon as it was sent to me.

Male Tears is a synth pop duo consisting of James Edward on vocals and synthesizer and Spencer Jackson on keyboards. The duo makes synthpop that reminds me of Culture Club and OMD mixed with the soundtrack from this SNES game I used to play as a kid called Plok. You see, Plok is this small yellow man throws his fucking limbs at enemies and travels to different islands looking for his flag. Some heartless asshole took Plok’s flag and boy is he pissed off. Well, I’m getting sidetracked here. So let me jump back into this review.


My Dude Plok

Overall, this is a solid fucking album. Each song has an early impact even though each track is compact. Songs are well structured and don’t overstay their welcome. They pummel you with catchy synth hooks, just the right amount of marimba leads and tickle you with these 80s pop vocals. Also I want to note that the drum programming here is phenomenal. A little goes a long way with drum programming. For example in the song “Let’s Pretend“, the drums are mostly a rock beat with some analog drum flair, but in the pre chorus, the back beat switches from 2 and 4 to the snare hitting on 3 which I geeked out about because it really broke up the flow of the song and kept it interesting.

Human Errorz” is another example of a synth pop classic that breaks from the albums electro thudding and gives you this off-kittler rhythmically stunning example of what Male Tears is giving you. Some of the drum patterns here remind me of Steve Gadd’s intro to “50 Ways To Leave Your Lover“.

Did I mention hooks? Each song is layered with the classic 80’s production tropes you’d expect and does it so well in a way that none of the tracks feel too busy. You’ll come across thicc Italio-disco bass lines with gated stabby sawtooth chord progressions and glassy pads, but on top of all of that are these absolutely baller melodies that act like those old filters at the bottom of swimming pools. Instead of overwhelming you, they keep you glued to each track. Future X has a hook that only shows up only in the fade out, which I thought was dope.

If I had to pick a favorite from this album I couldn’t, so here’s two. “Creep Distance” is a winner for me. The vocals really stand out in this track and the all around groove made me keep coming back to it. Also it reminds me of that Cars song that plays in the scene in Billy Madison where the principal gives Adam Sandler the card where he says he’s horny. “Adult Film” is also a winner for me and also where the title of this review comes from. This track is so fucking catchy and it has some straight forward erotic lyrics that I’m always a fan of.

Every song on this album is worth checking out if you want retro synth jams loaded with hits and erotic themes. My only critique is that sometimes the vocals get lost in the mix with all the reverb, bit fuck it. Its still a fantastic album. I’d love to see Male Tears put a more modern twist on their next release to keep things fresh as well. This album was released on Valentines Day the cassettes are already sold out, so get some more of those available because I want one.


IN FIRE AND IN BLOOD – Review by Eddie LaFlash

Hello titty bois and titty girls, this is Eddie LaFlash from Decent News and until Ken decides I’m too shitty at writing reviews I’ll be doing this for a while. Today I’ll be covering a single that Ken sent my way. IN FIRE AND IN BLOOD by ∆AIMON.

In fire and in blood - ∆AIMON

First off I’ll start with the title track. I want to start off by saying that this single has an incredible mix. Starting with these reverbed piano swells that lays a base melody for the track. It lays down a catchy yet ambient passage that gets interrupted with a cascade of strong ass synth pads before these Dave Gahan-esque vocals punch you right in the feelings. The song structure here is good, it directs you exactly to where the progression should leaving you with a very non jarring listen which is exactly what a great track like this should have. I would’ve preferred the female vocals to be a little higher in the mix, but that doesn’t matter because this track holds its ground so well.

Now we move onto the title track except this one has Wrecked in parenthesis. Now remember that bit I said about track one being a non jarring experience? Well, if you’d like a more jarring experience then the Wrecked mix will blow your fuckin pp off. While all of the elements and structure are present in this version, the kick has a breath of punchy distortion added aswell as some more frantic and upbeat hi hats. Dynamically, this has a little more looseness in the groove. One of these versions is guaranteed to tickle your fancy.

Track 3 is a cover of Scarecrow by Ministry. Now I’m not the biggest ministry fan (surprise) but that in no way effect how I feel about this cover. The crows in the intro got some “OOOOOO” points from me. That combined with the driving bass and the buttery sawtooth lead makes this track a nice long smooth drag off a cigarette. Then the chorus hits you abruptly and you get a little spooked and you drop your ciggy into your lap, but its okay. It’s a good spook, and you just go back to smoking your cigarette.

Overall, its a great listen. There’s alot of variety between the 3 tracks in this single that should hit everyone’s taste buds. ALSO, ∆AIMON gets even more “OOOOOO” points for having acoustic drums on this release. Not that that matters to me, its just cool to see and it definitely shows with how dynamic the percussion is on this release.