It’s not every day you discover an album that reinvents the wheel of what is possible in extreme metal, but that is exactly what can be said for Methwitch. A fusion of death metal, mathcore, and experimental industrial unlike anything ever heard before, and one year fresh off of the success from “Indwell”, we sat down with the mastermind behind Methwitch, Cameron McBride to explore what motivates him to keep pushing the boundaries, and how he manages time for all of his creative outlets.
Interviewer: How do you manage the time for all of your projects, and how does having multiple bands affect your creative process?
Cameron: I think it helps with my creativity! If I get burned out on one thing, I can switch to another since they’re all pretty different styles. Until recently I was burned out on heavy music, so that’s why I chilled out on Methwitch and focused on my non-metal projects. So it’s nice that if you get burned out on something, you can just switch to something else, and still be creative but in a different way. Then, when you’re ready to hop back to the other stuff you can just jump back in!
Interviewer: Do you have a preference between working in a band setting or working alone? What are the pros and cons to both in your experience?
Cameron: I find it easier to work alone just because I can literally do what I want with no compromise. I definitely love writing with the other bands for sure, and I love the stuff we put out, but for me it’s cool to work solo because if I have any idea in my head, I can make it exactly the way I want, and not worry about anyone else’s input whether they like it or not. It’s just what I hear in my head I can make completely.
Interviewer: How long have you been working solo?
Cameron: As far back as probably 2007? It was before I got more into production, and stuff like that so I definitely had no idea what I was doing but at the time I didn’t have a lot of people to jam with. So I would find the shittiest recording programs, and didn’t know anything about mixing, I would just throw my ideas together, and around 2011 I became more serious and began trying to figure out how to make stuff sound better, not just throwing things together.
Interviewer: Is the creative process and starting point of every project different, or do you have a set way of how you go about writing? For example, how does the process between Methwitch and Bleach Wave differ?
Cameron: For Bleach Wave it’s definitely influenced by a lot of 90s alternative rock like Smashing Pumpkins, Nirvana, and Sunny Day Real Estate with some shoegaze thrown in there like Third Eye Blind, and Ringo Deathstarr.
Interviewer: What’s the most experimental thing you’ve done on a record?
Cameron: I did a lot of weird stuff on Indwell. Like there’s parts I used tape measures hooked up to contact mics run through my pedalboard to get weird noises, using different power tools, as well as stabbing cardboard boxes and dragging them across the room. On Piss, I made a contraption where it was a soda cup, and I put masking tape around the straw so it would have a gritty texture to it, and when you would slide it in and out it make a weird grinding noise, After that I put a hole in the bottom of the cup and stuck it on the microphone and was pulling it back and forth to make a very distorted sound. I also hooked up a contact microphone to a water bottle and ran it through my pedalboard, and when I would hum into it, it would make a really weird noise, you could hear it in the intro to the song to “Indwell”.
Interviewer: I noticed you make a mask for each new album, do they hold any sort of symbolism for the music, or is it ritual before you begin work on an album?
Cameron: Not really for Shadowkeeper or Piss. For Shadowkeeper it was inspired by one of the masks from Rob Zombies Halloween, the orange pumpkin looking one. I actually made that back in 2007 when the movie came out. For Piss I made one with a witch nose, and used colors that looked like sewage, so that’s why it’s yellow and olive green like shit and piss! For Indwell, I wanted to make an evil demon looking mask, and wrote lyrics to go along with it to incorporate it into the album.
Interviewer: What was the process of creating “Indwell” like?
Cameron: I got really burned out on the whole slam thing, and it got super oversaturated. On Piss I began experimenting with dissonance, and just wanted to do more of that. I also wanted to do another concept album since Shadowkeeper was a concept EP. This time I wanted to make something like a horror movie but in audio form. I was really inspired by film scores like Insidious, and wanted to create a concept revolving around demonic possession. It was a little difficult because I had to organize the tracks before I had any lyrics written, so I had to make sure that the tracks would flow along with the story after it was written.
Interviewer: Do you usually begin a record with instrumentals first, or does it vary?
Cameron: It’s always usually instrumentals for me. Like, on Indwell there’s a lot of odd time parts so I write my vocal patterns to go along with the riffs. So I definitely need the instrumentals to be done before I dive into the lyrics.
Interviewer: Do you ever want to take Methwitch live?
Cameron: I’m intent on keeping it solo, I think live would be too stressful because I don’t want to play ringleader and teach everyone the parts, and I would need a slipknot level of people to do it, just cause I wouldn’t want a whole lot of backing tracks.
Interviewer: Last but not least, do you have anything in the near future fans should expect?
Cameron: I’m planning on a new God.TheBountyHunter record soon! The first album was experimenting and having fun with that hyper-pop sound, but on the newer stuff I’m looking to expand and hone in what I did on the first record. I’m looking at releasing it around next spring.
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