Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Blakker Nio Interview

1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the musical project these days?

Well, I have quite a few projects going on at the moment. At present, I am working with an awesome psychedelic musician in my hometown and we are creating a 60's psychedelic garage record. The project is called Dead Land and we are working on tracks right now.
I also have this synth pop project I'm working on with a few people through soundcloud. I will have a girl sing on the tracks, she is this awesome artist from Baltimore called Adryelle. She has stuff of her own on soundcloud. I really dug her vibe and voice. That should be out in the coming weeks. With Blakkr Nio I will be recording some more drone stuff but want to do it in a professional studio. I will be releasing a tape through Achrinidiscs (Toronto) in the fall with my goth folk project The Unquiet Grave, its basically going to be the best songs from two EPs I released. One of the EPS Whispers in the Wind was reviewed by this cool blog called Weird Canada.

2.Recently you have released a new ep, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past few months?

I would describe the Blakkr Nio sound as haunting drone for a dystopic age. The first collaboration I did was called The Doppler Effect which was about using abandoned urban space in modern music and integrating ambient guitar. I was influenced by the Situationist movement in 60s France. The idea of creating a spectacle in urban space was very appealing to me. I was influenced by Ghost Cities (Abandoned cities) in China and places like Detroit.  The sound for the second ep was similar in sound but thematically different. It was about the Chernobyl disaster and I wanted to create a sound art piece about it. Very haunting place and I was inspired to create something about it. The two drone metal release were pure self indulgence on my part. I am a big fan of drone metal bands like Sunn O)), Earth and Boris. I love the heavy and doom ridden riffs they create. Very awe inspiring music.

3.In the last few months you have released a good amount of material do you feel this musical project takes up a great amount of your time?

Yes, I wanted to nurture this project because I got all these great ideas when exploring the large genre of drone. However, I am going to spend more of my time now focusing on more accessible music. I like to mix and match. I really love 60s music and want to focus more on guitar based stuff with lyrics. I tried the drone stuff out for fun, its a hip genre at the moment and figured why not try it out. I explore many different music styles with all my projects. I don't like to be lumped into one genre. It limits you and you can get lazy just doing the same thing over again. I want to keep things fresh all the time.

4.With each release you seem to have a different concept, can you tell us a little bit more about the themes you have brought out with your music so far?

Well as I mentioned, I was influenced by Guy Debord of the Situationist movement and The Chernobyl disaster. I am very interested in 1980s Soviet Russia. Its a strange and mysterious time. With the new 60's garage rock project its about my time in San Francisco and it was just a weird time for me so I wrote stuff about it. I explore lots of different concepts some personal some impersonal. I have traveled the world a lot and met tons of people from all walks of life, It would be a waste not to channel my experience into creative things like music and writing. I see all experience as equal, good and bad. Its all there to make you think about the world around you. I would like to use my rights and freedoms to share that with people. People are generally interested in the stuff I put out. I am thankful for the support and interest from everyone. Life is short might as well give it my all and enjoy the ride.

5.Your musical style covers a variety of many different musical genres from ambient, drone, doom metal and post rock out off all the musical styles that you have experimented with so far which one do you prefer?

I like all the genre's generally. I think my favorite would be psychedelic music/post rock. I listen to mainly 60's music generally. Obscure psych and folk stuff.  I also love bands like The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Anton is a genius and his music is always inspiring. I love tripped out Indian drone music too. My taste is extremely diverse. Music is out there to be explored, its all serves a purpose to open your mind to new feelings and visions.

6.Can you tell us a little bit more about the name 'Blakkr Nio'?
The name comes from Old Norse it means Black Moon. I  like Norse mythology and Greek Mythology, wanted to use some of the cool language for a music project. It has a dark ominous vibe about it which was appealing. I like music from Norway and Iceland. Very awe inspiring and epic. One of my favorite bands beside Brian Jonestown Massacre is The Dead Skeletons. Jon and his band mates are amazing and super inspiring.

7.So far you have recorded most of your music solos while you have also worked with other musicians on some of these releases, do you prefer to work solos?

I like both to be honest. I am a newbie at music. I only started a year ago really. So its good to work with others who are stronger in areas Im not that proficient in. I love to experiment on my own though. I really am open to both and will continue to be.

8.You have worked with Newgrange and King Brude on some of your tracks how do you feel their musical styles are compatible with yours?
Well, Newgrange is excellent in the drone genre and really added another dynamic layer to the drone sound I wanted to create. He also has some studio knowledge and was able to mix it in a more professional way. That is an area I am working on. King Brude is awesome with his guitar. I really like his style. We seem to like the same 80's British Bands. I have spent a quarter of my life living in England and Ireland. So I am really influenced British post punk. I live in Canada now and have drone for quite a while. There is so much good stuff coming out of Canada, one of my closest friends Alex, has this awesome new band called Holy Data, they are great, very catchy psych pop stuff.

9.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?
Some of my release are on Netlabels around Europe. I will be releasing as Tape through Achranidiscs in Toronto, I would like to release more stuff with them if it works out. I am interested in more label attention but am wary of contracts and corporate agenda's. Its really an old model that is dying out. I like releasing stuff through Bandcamp and make some money here and there. I am looking forward to my tape which I will be selling myself.
It would also be available through Weird Canada's web store called Weird Dystro. It should be out in the early fall hopefully.

10.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of ambient and drone? Generally, people really dig it. I have been reviewed by some notable blogs such as Boston Hassle, Weird Canada, Attn: Magazine UK and Grey Point Owl Canada. People on soundcloud are really great, I have collaborated with people through that site and they have some nice things to say about all the music. I get to check out their stuff too. King Brude's solo stuff is awesome and Newgrange is amazing with his solo drone work.
I also got a lot of support from Tom who runs the Sound and Vision music blog in Ireland. He has been really great in checking my stuff out.

11.Where do you see your musical direction evolving into during the future?
I would like to do my psych rock and drone stuff but in a professional studio and hopefully play live sometime soon. I will always be creating and nurturing the different projects. 

12.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

I mentioned bands like The Brian Jonestown Massacre which were a big influence for the Dead Land project. I also love the Dead Skeletons from Iceland as I mentioned. I love old psych bands like 13th floor elevators, Love. Australian punk stuff from the 80s is amazing Birthday Party, Rowland S Howard (my fave guitarist)  I am also a big fan of the sublime frequency compilations of psych music from Burma, Vietnam and other countries. Its all old 70s stuff that were digitized. Its so awesome, the music is amazing.I don't know what they are saying but its awesome all the same. Obviously my buddy's band is awesome Holy Data and old folk singers like Karen Dalton always get me. I saw St Vincent (Annie Clark) recently, I'm not going to lie, I have a crush on her. She is so amazing.

13.What are some of your non musical interests?

Writing Poetry and Short Stories. Making music videos from old stock footage. Ski Racing. Reading. Anything to get the mind going. I love to be out and living life any chance I can get. Time is precious, I want to get my value for it. Being creative is the ultimate therapy.

14.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts? 

I wanted to thank you for the great interview and support. I am appreciative of your interest and support. Its great that these blogs and online mags are popping up exposing people to new underground stuff. I do have a website which anyone can check out, the address iswww.petermcnestry.com  It has all my stuff and press on it. Thanks a lot man. Peace.

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