I have known Evan, main creator of Psykkle, since I was 17. He has been my Canadian brother in music for a long time, and it has been truly awesome to see us both grow together in music and life. I went up and stayed on his couch for a few days in 2009 and put on a hell of a show to his friends. It was a good time. Psykkle has a new Female vocalist and a much different sound than it originally had, but unlike most bands with girl singers, I think it really works well. 

Current Release: Rock Bottom Paradise
Label: self released

Interview: Psykkle

You recently put out your 3rd self released CD, entitled “Rock Bottom Paradise” - What changes did you make to the sound of Psykkle from your last release?

On Rock Bottom Paradise, I think a lot of it was more defining and perfecting the actual sound. A lot of the actual music is very similar in style to the material on The Parthian Shot, but after working on Rock Bottom Paradise for a while, I realized that was an issue. I didn’t want to rehash the same sound. After having Sabine do guest vocals on a Left Spine Down remix I did, we recorded the track Welcome To Paradise, and I realized at that point, that was the element that needed to be added to Psykkle’s sound.

Do you think the addition of a female vocalist has broadened your fan base?

I think Sabine’s addition to the project definitely made the sound more appealing to a larger group of people. I have always enjoyed dark and aggressive music, but I always felt most music done in a darker more aggressive style was lacking a certain sense of beauty. I think its that sense of beauty that attracts people to the sound we have.

What were some of the influential albums for “Rock Bottom Paradise?”

My musical tastes are always all over the place, so I drew influence from a number of sources. During the writing process of Rock Bottom Paradise I was listening to Velvet Acid Christ’s “The Art of Breaking Apart” a lot, as well as some Hip-Hop groups like Souls of Mischief, and Public Enemy. For me its about the emotional response that the music triggers, and that’s where the inspiration comes from.

Your previous release, “Burning The Road To Paradise,” was mostly remixes – How was it working with some of the bigger named bands on the CD (HexRx, Caustic, etc)?

It was a lot of fun. It was stressful at a time because I’ve always found it hard to co-ordinate things like a remix album, but I was really happy with the turnout. HexRx did that remix for me in record time, and HexRx has always been very supportive of what we’re doing. I also wanted to make a point of including some homegrown Edmonton artists as well, so I made sure to include iVardensphere and Virtual Terrorist. My favourite part of that album would definitely be the collab track with Caustic. He was really awesome with getting his vocals done super quick, and we actually recorded the vocals for the chorus of that track backstage at Kinetik 3. That was a fun experience.

You and I started about the same time, and used a lot of the same software and had a lot of the same influences – Can you describe the transition from Fruity Loops 7 (or 6 maybe) to what you are using now and how much effect that has had on the musical style?

I’ve never stopped using FL Studio, because I’ve never found another DAW as comfortable to work with. Over the years, they have made a lot of changes, but it’s always made my work flow easier. I do also use Abelton Live, but I primarily use that for live performances.

Most of your shows have been in your home country (Canada) – Do you have any plans to travel down to the US in the near future?

That is something that we as a group really want to do, but money is always a factor. We’re constantly thinking of possible ways to make some trips down to US, even if it’s only a few cities. I do know there have been at least a few people wanting Psykkle to invade Portland at some point, but hopefully we can make something happen for the summer or fall.

How much hardware do you incorporate into studio recording?

I dont rely too much on hardware, so most of my work is done digitally. I do utilize an Access Virus TI [as well as a Virus C], and a Roland JV-880, but mostly everything is done using various software synths and digital sequencers.

If you could tour with any one band (currently in rotation,) who would it be?v

If Psykkle was ever presented with an opportunity to tour, I think I would prefer our first tour be with an artist that we have a history with. I’ve always played around with the idea of wanting to do a tour with [Product] or Virtual Terrorist.

You are currently working on a themed album (or a concept album,) what was the process for that decision and how is it coming along?

As of right now we are working on the next 2 albums at once. The story album is an idea to, once again, make Psykkle more appealing to a larger audience. We aren’t planning on becoming a concept band by any means, but the story album comes from wanting to share some of our creative ideas that would seem out of place as just a single track. I think we’ll pursue the concept album like a book, where each story album [if we decide to do more then one] would be an additional chapter.

What are your top 5 albums of all time?

[in no particular order]

Souls of Mischief – 93 ‘til Infinity [1993]
Unkle – Psyence Fiction [1998]
Vangelis – Blade Runner OST [1982]
Terror Punk Syndicate – Extended Playtime [2007]
Tapping The Vein – The Damage [2002]

I know all of you Canadian boys up there in Edmonton are huge nerds – What are you currently playing and what system do you prefer it on?

I’m a PS3 person myself. Everyone either has a hard-on for Modern Warefare 3, or Battlefield 3. I did Modern Warfare, for a while, but I wanted something new, so I’m trying out Battlefield 3. I’m also really into Deus Ex: Human Revolution. Every so often I like to get my fix of older games, and that’s when I bust out the Snes.

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