The M3 Coffee Shoppe has been grooving to the richly unique sound of Novachild. Red jumped at the chance to interview Bruce Rich about the album, Havia. Bruce spilled quite a few personal and industry beans in the process.
M3: Give the M3 Readers the professional snapshot as an introduction, Bruce.
BR: Novachild, helmed by Bruce Rich, extends to nearly 14 years of recordings, live performances and collaborations. Echoing flavors of ambiance, IDM, Jazz and Progressive Rock, Novachild’s 7th release Havia features Ransom Conner on bass and James McGowan on drums, summoning a new, organic force amid epic pads, minimal melodies and eclectic textures.
BR: Above all else, I feel I must thank my family for being able to coexist with a musician, blessing me with enough time and space to let the creative process run its course. My wife is a trooper; she’s very encouraging when I feel the impulse to create, which is not an easy thing to be with a 16-month old and a teenager running amok. Bless her. Speaking of which, she’s on the new album, reciting from the Kalevala in Finnish (Cultivate The Void). So’s my little boy (Kiss That Baby).
M3: Does family make this work close to your heart?
BR: Havia, my new album, is very personal to me. The first song, in fact, was written the same week I put my new studio together. It was a celebration of my new home. The second song was written with the
Wisconsin protesters in mind (that’s them in the background, in fact). My baby is on there, my wife is on there. My cats are probably on there if you listen close enough. And I spent a LOT of time building the world for these songs to inhabit…Something like 20 years. Havia is a fictional place I created in my attempt to write a sci-fi novel.
M3: What is up your sleeve?
BR: A ‘sequel’ of sorts to Havia, featuring several of my musician friends (the head count is under way). I’m also working on a new, all-electronic EP to satiate my desires for that sort of thing. Lastly, I think it’s time to show people what I can do vocally, so look out for that.
M3: If I decided to make the jump to music, what advice would you give me?
BR: Don’t listen to the naysayers. Inspire yourself with what you can achieve. Getting hung up on pleasing others will wreck your work, so come to your projects with an empty mind. By that, I mean it in a zen way. Anything you bring with you to the band room, studio, canvas… it’s going to make its way into your art. The less cluttered your mind is, the more sincere your creations will be because they are coming directly from the source.
M3: Good advice. Does the mainstream industry look down on self-produced artists?
BR: I just ignore it all because it has no bearing on what I’m doing. I don’t think the industry is aware enough of anything beyond itself to have a position beyond itself, except of course when they’re hungry for more. They’re too busy shaking their own hand, patting their own back and marketing what YOU will like (whether you like it or not, you will).
M3: Wow! So, they are that self-centered and out of touch with listeners?
BR: Just today, MTV announced their ‘Top 10 Electronic Acts of 2011,’ with artists such as “Tiesto,” “Skrillex,” etc. I’m not ragging on Tiesto & Co., but this sort of thing shows me just how out of touch the industry is with electronic music. Nearly everything on that list sounds like something I was listening to or composing 10 or even 15 years ago. The industry lacks the ability to reflect the modern times because it’s too busy milking old sounds and patting itself on the back.
BR: That I’m a bit OCD…to the point of trashing an entire recording if it doesn’t fit my ideal of what it should be. I don’t extend this to others; it’s a personal thing.
M3: What make Havia different from everything else in the genre?
BR: I draw from many wells, and I feel that at least half of the inspiration for Havia came from places no one can touch or share unless they hear it. The other half is style… I’ve spent 14 years honing that. Havia wasn’t approached with a certain audience in mind. It was developed through extended experimentation, collaboration and a personal need to tell an emotive story. Though many artists could say the same, the forces that inspired Havia are uniquely my own.
M3: Wrap it up with a 15-words-or-less spot telling M3 Readers why they need your album.
BR: Because you enjoy electronic music, but need something more than the latest club hit.
Dear M3 Readers,
Take a few moments to experience Novachild’s music. You can download Havia and Novachild’s other albums directly from the Facebook fan page. Follow Novachild on Twitter for the latest in releases and dates.
As always, thank you for your continued support of the very talented authors and artists of The M3 Coffee Shoppe. When you tweet this post, please use the hashtags #music and #FF.
(c) Ann Marie Dwyer 2011
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