The Creative Process #13 Protector 101

When did you start making music and what was the contributor factor that made you to do so?

I’ve always had a desire for music for as long as I can remember. Picking up random instruments and fiddling around with them. I started really making music around the age of 13, but nothing serious. It was just recording guitar riffs here and there slapping things together. Super ameatuer style, I also had no idea what the hell I was doing. It wasn’t until I was about 15 or 16 that I started actually using some type of (basic) production skills. This was also the time I started to get into electronic and industrial music, received my first two keyboards and started really getting into dabbling in with that sound.

How hard was it for you to create, record and release your first material?

Well for my very first material I ever recorded was again, extremely amateurish. I didn’t have the recording and production capabilities that I have now and technology was very different when I was young compared to now. Back then I would setup a tape recorder and hit record, relying on the cassette players mic to listen. That turned into a 4 tracker, then mini-disc, then finally a computer. I’ve never released my any of my music that I made when I was young. Very few people have heard that music/noise. I think about releasing it every now and then, but it’s extremely primitive. I’m not sure anybody would enjoy it but me.

What is the main art form that influenced you in creating? Was it only music or did movies and other forms of art influenced your creative process?

For P101 it’s usually movies, or concepts like movies. I also look at the artists back in the 80s for inspirations, especially the musicians that created all those wonderful soundtracks we love so much. I really admire what they’ve accomplished with movies like, Terminator, Surf Nazis Must Die, Chopping Mall…For me those are all memorable scores. Today, nothing like that is coming out of Hollywood.

What are the steps that an idea takes before becoming a fully fledge song? And how does that idea affects the way you build an album from the ground up?

It all depends really… For me it’s all over the place. For my release Wastelands, one random track I made one day basically inspired the whole album, while my newest album that I’ve just finished has been in the works for over 2 years. Some tracks are basically the same while other are completely different. So for me it’s either really hot or really cold, haha.

What do you consider the most important traits that a song and an album must have before you consider it to be completed?

It’s got be memorable. Otherwise, what’s the point of making a song/album? There’s nothing worse than mediocrity in an art form.

What are the actual steps that you take when you are creating? Do you need to enter or go to a certain setting in order to get creative?

A lot of people make templates in their DAW’s. I think this is good for saving time and if you have an idea you need to get out but I’ve found for myself this extremely limits me in starting to create a track from scratch. I’ll usually have an idea in my head, a beat, a riff, a certain sound I want, and structure after that. I’ve never had music lessons and I don’t read music so I kind of go in blind all the time. This can be a good thing and a bad thing for multiple of reasons.

Except art are there any other external or internal factors that influence you when you create, if so what are they?

I’m really into abandoned and dilapidated buildings/structures. Rust, metal, textures… All those good things. But I also find peace in beautiful places like Iceland and have quite a fascination of all things Japanese.

What is your main motivation to create and be creative?

I’m not sure if it’s one thing or multiple. It’s kind of hard to explain, but it’s just this feeling inside me that I have to get out. Like, if I’m not working on music I feel guilty. Sure, I’ll have some downtime to watch movies and play video games but I get extremely antsy if I’m just sitting on the couch not doing a damn thing. It’s probably pretty over the top to say this but, I feel like if I didn’t have this method of releasing these feelings I might go crazy and become depressed.

How long does it take to go from a song to an album from scratch to the fully recorded version?

Like I mentioned previously, it’s completely random. I’ve had full albums I’ve made in less than a month to my newest album taking over 2+ years. It all depends on how and what I’m feeling at that time I guess.

Do you take multiple takes of the songs before settling on the final version or do you go with the flow and just do one take?

98% of the time it’s multiple takes and multiple versions of every song (Song101 final final FINAL FINAL version). I keep everything, because I’ve found myself coming back every now and then to these versions of songs and making something out of them.

During live shows what do you like to do more, experiment and improvise on the basis of the existing album and songs or you are more likely to recreate the recorded material as faithfully as possible?

Right now it’s probably 50/50 of both. I’m always changing up my act in how I manage playing live. I want people to experience the tracks as they were created but also give that improvise feel to it as well. I think both are equally important.

What are the main ingredients that makes a live show special for you?

Probably my same trait for songs/albums. Being memorable. I love being engaged with the crowd. I feed off their energy. I’ve seen some of my favorite bands play live but actually ended up hating or being extremely bummed out because their act was completely boring. Also, a loud and clean sound system helps.

Do new ideas appear during live performances? If so how to do you proceed in order to materialize them?

Oh yeah, definitely… I’ll play unreleased material to a live crowd and gage their reactions, what clicks, what doesn’t. Also I’ve changed some hardware setup because maybe the way I had it doesn’t make sense for this certain idea, or maybe this one button press caused a serious problem during a live set (true story). It’s all a learning experience, especially when you start to play multiple shows back to back.

What is the perfect time of day and weather that makes you creative?

Probably during the day when it’s rainy and grey.

What are your future plans and what advice do you have for people that want to get into creating music?

New album is done, just waiting for logistics with the label to get a final release date and already starting to work on the next release. I have a quite a few live shows (two of them being festivals) coming up this year as well and have a score that might be in the works as well. As far as advice… Don’t imitate. Do your own thing. Take inspiratations but make them your own. Don’t be another number. Especially if that number is 101, because that’s mine.

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