alien machine – the sea complains EP

For those that haven’t heard of you yet, how would you best describe your sound, and who have been your biggest influences so far?

My music is very DIY. I record everything myself, so it’s very raw and punk. My favorite comparison I’ve gotten was in reference to one of the songs off of my first album, someone called it “like King Crimson on bleach.” I would say my biggest influences are kind of eclectic, but it has to be Radiohead, the Blood Brothers, and Jeff Rosenstock. 

Do you remember what the first song was that made you want to start a career in music?

I think it would be “The Recieving End of it All” by Streetlight Manifesto. That was one of the first bands that I started listening to when I was developing my own taste in music, and not just listening to whatever my parents put on, and I remember just memorizing every single song on that album and being obsessed with the songwriting behind it.

You have just released your new EP ‘the sea complains’. Can you tell us how that EP came about?

The first song that I had the music for was “aquaburst”. I bought a new guitar last year and I was messing around getting a feel for it and it just kind of fell out with that main riff. When I’m practicing, unless I’m just doing drills to try and nail down technique and skill, I pretty much always try and write a little riff and then I’ll just play that over and over, refining it until I either get something I want to make into a full song, or I scrap it entirely. The first song that actually got any lyrics was “coward” and I would say that after I finished writing that, it influenced a lot of where the rest of the songs ended up.

And is there a story behind it?

It’s a lot more focused in subject than my other releases. Pretty much every song is about mental health in some way, the feelings of betrayal from your mind not working how you think it should, or failing memory for things that should be easy. Stuff like that. 

What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as an artist?

Something I’ve done for the last two releases to kind of prove to myself I’m getting better is to cover some of the songs I wrote with the band I was in in high school. I think it’s a fun project to cover songs and see what parts of it work for you and what doesn’t, and doing that with your own old music just adds another layer to it where you can directly compare. 

What would you be doing right now, if it wasn’t for your music career?

I really can’t imagine what else I’d be doing with my free time if it wasn’t for music. Even when I’ve had big gaps in my life where I wasn’t making anything new, I was always listening to new stuff and learning new things. It’s just too big a part of my life to give up anymore.

And finally, what is the best piece of musical advice you have ever been given?

You just have to sit down and write. It doesn’t matter if it’s good, it’s so much more important that you’re developing that ear for what works and what doesn’t. You just have to keep writing, because you’re never going to get to something good by waiting for it to come to you fully formed.

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