Mexican avant-garde one-man band The Outsider talked with Prog Sphere about the recently released single “Suicide is Peogress”,” which features guest performance by Shining vocalist and saxophonist Jørgen Munkeby.
Define the mission of The Outsider.
Musically speaking the mission of The Outsider is challenge people ears by making metal and music that breaks musical and music genres conventions, even break the conventional tonality system and the 12 tones musical system, thinking forward and fearing nothing. That’s why the new songs are highly experimental, not all of them and not in extreme ways, but it is a starting point in the musical evolution path I want to take, time will tell where it takes The Outsider in the future. Lyrically speaking the mission is spreading chaos and horror as an essential part of humanity.
Tell me about the creative process that informed your recent single “Suicide is Progress” and the themes it captures.
The creative process for my writing sessions is a ritual, I take a couple of weeks for that, usually on holiday seasons and start writting songs, I start with the most “conventional” ones, with traditional metal structures and then go into the most experimental and weird songs, “Suicide is Progress” was written in that point when I compose very strange stuff, I just wanted to do something very jazzy and electronic, so I explored a lot of jazzy chords and guitar tone and playing, also including the sax made it more experimental. What I want to capture is strangeness and make the listener somehow unconfortable, I wanted to capture madness, because it is closely linked to the lyrics.
What is the message you are trying to give with “Suicide is Progress”?
The theme is basically human psyche when it turns completely twisted and deranged, and how dangerous it can be for other people.
“Suicide is Progress” is the first single from your upcoming album. What can you tell me about the release? How did you document the music while it was being formulated?
The album is coming in march hopefully and it is a compendium of different kinds of horror lyrically speaking, and musically speaking is a very experimental album, of course there will be some “conventional” songs, but as I said before, I want to take my music to the next step in an avantgarde way, and this new album is the first solid step, all the songs are different and there will be a couple of very bizarre songs. I documented the writting process with a bunch of demos and unreleased songs and ideas, as well as primitive versions of the final songs, some songs that did not make it to the album will be used for the next (third) album becaused I composed the songs thinking in TWO albums, this one is the first of two or maybe three releases, but details about that will be unveiled later.
Is the dynamic flow of the pieces carefully architected?
Absolutely yes, something I am taking care a lot in this album is the production and the flow of the songs and the album as a whole. So every sound is placed there for an specific reason.
Describe the approach to recording the album.
It has been a long trip (because to this date, it is still in mixing process), it all started almost three years ago when I wrote the first song of the album, and for a year and a half I wrote many songs, after that I decided which songs would make it to the album and saved the rest for later releases, then I started working in the orchestral arrangements and production details, after that I took the demos to the studio and started recording them, it took months and the mixing process has taken some time too, another reason it took that time is that I changed logo and renewed my brand, and that took some time, but I rather wait for everything to be on point instead of releasing something mediocre or not finished.
Which bands or artists influenced your work on the release?
In terms of goals I got influenced by bands that do not fear in changing their style like Ulver, Sigh or Therion. And musically speaking for this release I had some more doom infuences like Triptykon or Paradise Lost, for the orchestral parts my biggest influence is still Septicflesh and Therion but also composers like Penderecki, Xenakis and Stravinsky, but he new influences are towards the avantgarde and progressive parts, King Crimsons has been a HUGE influence for this album, also Sigh. I also explored jazz performers like John Zorn and very experimental and dark stuff like Diamanda Galas or Lingua Ignota, even if they are not exactly metal
What is your view on technology in music?
I think is great that technology makes music easier to do, specially when you want to experiment a lot. Times change and I think is better to take advantage of that instead of trying to fight it. The next single will actually take advantage of some kind of technology that is not very common in music, we are using 8D technology for some tracks of the song, the result may blow people’s mind.
Do you see your music as serving a purpose beyond music?
Asolutely yes, I don’t know exactly how. But for me music purpose can be more than just entertaining.
What are your plans for the future?
Keep on releasing music, after this upcoming album there will be another album and maybe a complementary release like an EP, Unfortunately there are no plans for live shows.
Check out The Outsider on Bandcamp.