This song hits me somewhat more personal than the other songs, because I can relate to the song as a whole. I’ve been in a relationship that had unspoken emotional barriers that ended up building up to the point of drama. A situation that could have been handled completely different, and that didn’t have to end up there.
Live interview Episode #550: A.V.A Live Radio Behind The Music with Jacqueline Jax : http://tobtr.com/10470013
Interview by Jacqueline Jax
host of A.V.A Live Radio
Band Name: MY WORLD DOWN
Alex Walker (Vocals/Guitar/Songwriter/Producer)
Jhon vento (Guitar/Producer)
Person Interviewing: Alex Walker Jhon vento
Song name: Until I Break
Music Genre: Hard Rock
Until I break is a bout a relationship on the rocks, that’s eating at you everyday. It’s hard to let go because of the time and love invested, but at the same time you realize that the other person is taking advantage of you in every way. When your partner takes you for granted and they keep pushing you, and pushing you, and pushing you closer to that breaking point because they feel secure that you wont leave them. Eventually you end up breaking, and do what you know is best for yourself, even though your aware of the pain it will cause you.
As Stated by Alex, the song is basically a bout a relationship on the edge. When working on the music for it, I focused on the changes in mood, which is why there are parts that seem innocent, before the music becomes aggressive. This song hits me somewhat more personal than the other songs, because I can relate to the song as a whole. I’ve been in a relationship that had unspoken emotional barriers that ended up building up to the point of drama. A situation that could have been handled completely different, and that didn’t have to end up there.
Link to play:: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-BQ49tVCz2M
Something that is hard for me to put into words, because it is a part of me. It sounds cliche to say it’s therapy, but in some way it is relief. Relief from stress, relief from anxiety, relief from the world around me. Being able to look inside yourself and make tangible what is only a feeling and thought in your head is something I will never take for granted because it’s a skill i still refine even today.
I know I have had thoughts and feeling since before I started making music, but to learn to express them in a way that I like to hear, is something that took years to learn. It’s like you know what you want to hear, and you also know how you felt when you had the idea for the song, but the sound coming out of your speakers doesn’t quite match the intensity of your thought. So learning to be able to translate from heard to speaker properly is something I will probably work on until I leave this planet. It’s my form of expression and communication, so it has to be right. There is no point in hiring an interpreter if he cant translate what your saying.
To put it in simple words, it’s a way to express stories that we have experienced, and know that other people can relate to as well. People that have been fortunate enough to experience life, have definitely been through something similar, but I think every song we make is a way of letting it all out, but also a way to enjoy the situation in some form, even if it’s a situation that isn’t present in our lives anymore or wasn’t enjoyable while it was happening.
How do you think this release represents your current direction.
Until I Break is the first single off of this upcoming EP. but what will become very obvious to listeners is that each song is individual, and each song stands on its own. This means we did what is best for each song, on a song by song basis. We don’t necessarily feel we need to have “style” or “sound”. Doing that would have felt too much like we are limiting ourselves, and not being true to all the influences we have. I like all kinds of music, from rock to drum n bass, and from hip-hop to country. Now our music isn’t that all over the place, but you will hear influences from every genre that effects us in our music. In my opinion there are too many bands that try to stick to one certain sound, and thats cool, if that’s truly how you want to express and present yourself, but I know there is more to most people than that. I know you aren’t angry all day everyday, I know you don’t wear the same clothing every day, all day, so why make your music so one colored.
It’s an interesting question, because to me I don’t feel like there really is one direction that follows this release, I mean this EP does have a more consistent sound, and I love it, but thats one thing I really like about working on music; there are no rules. I love so many different types of music and genres that I easily get inspired to incorporate or try a lot of different influences into our music.. This particular EP has influences from across the world, Including the far east, and even some more exotic sounds that we aren’t commonly exposed to. Non the less, I feel it’s a sound that is still easy to get into as a listener.
We work out of my bedroom. I have a small recording set up. Jhon and myself have been working out of this bedroom for 8 years now on different projects. We have tried multiple pieces of gear, but usually fall back on software for most production style elements in our music. Usually I will bring the bare bones skeleton of a song to Jhon. Which in our case means a chord progression played on an acoustic guitar, with a vocal melody and lyrics. In my opinion a good song should be able to be played as bare as that, and still sound great. Once we feel we have the basics of a good song, we record the chords and my demo vocal into Logic. From their we will program in drum parts, record bass, electric guitars, and add any production elements we are going to add to the song.
For this EP we have been recording final vocals and drums over art Studio City Sound in Studio City CA. We work with this amazing young engineer Andrew Schwartz. His ideas for vocal production has been nothing short of amazing. Tom Weir engineered the drum sessions for us, which was absolutely amazing as well. Having a grammy winning engineer working with you is a whole different experience.
We do record final guitars and basses in my home studio though. We have been through many different guitar modelers, including the Kemper, the Axe Fx II, and recently the Line 6 Helix. You will find a mix of equipment used for the guitars and basses on this EP. For “Until I Break” we actually used a plugin (Software) amp called menace made by JST for both guitars and bass. On the rest of the EP it will be all Line 6 Helix for bass and guitars.
This Particular EP is different, which is what makes this exciting. This time we worked in a studio as well as the bedroom studio we usually use. For a long time we’ve been only working in a home studio, and after each project we finished, we got better and better at what we do. On this EP we decided to go to a studio that has some serious history.
The best part is, that the studio we are going to is literally a few blocks from Alex’s place which is where we usually work. It’s interesting because, us as Los Angeleans have the luxury of having very affordable, and high quality studios nearby. I really think that this time the music has reached a new level for us, and I hope that listeners will enjoy our work on this EP as much as we do.
How do you stay focused and balance creating with life..
It is hard, because music is my full time job, this means I don’t and can’t get away from it, neither would I want to. Most people get to use music as an escape, but for me, its my natural habitat. Now the creation process it self is an escape for me as well in some way. As mentioned before, it is release and relief. At the same time because I am around it 24/7 I have a different relationship with it than most musicians I know.
To be honest I don’t have much of a life outside of music. I know that sounds dull, and boring, and totally not rock n roll or whatever, but normal everyday stuff tends to bore me pretty fast. I never been into partying or going out much or anything like that. I am kind of a homebody, I visit my girlfriend every few weeks, who lives in Oregon, so I consider that my “living life” outside of music time.
When I do find time to myself, I just like to watch Netflix/Hulu, and play video games. I have always been a nerd at heart really.
My life in has been crazy, and recently got even crazier, but I love it, because there is never a moment that i’m doing “nothing”. Making music is my escape from a long day of insanity. When I’m tired after work/running errands I immediately go and work on music. Whether it’s learning something new, or laying down some parts on our songs, etc.
I have been working on music daily for a long time, and I really do enjoy every second of it. Recently what’s been really pushing me is working with other musicians like our Vocal producer at the studio we are currently recording at. His ideas and creativity inspires me to push myself to new heights.
What piece of music advice forever changed your way of thinking?:
“There is two parts to the music business, the music, and the business”. This is something I try to help other artists with, but a lot of them are too stubborn, or too caught up in the art side of things to take it to heart.
If you truly want to do this for a living you have to wear both hats.
The thing is that the artist hat stops when the song is created, the other 80% of the time, you have to be the business man, the entrepreneur. You can create music all day long, everyday, but if your business isn’t on point, no one will ever hear the music you created, neither will you be able to sustain yourself making music. In today’s music industry you have to learn everything that labels do, and implement those things yourself.
I know most artist don’t want to hear that, because there is something pure a bout art, that business has tarnished over the years, but honestly unless you only want to create music as a hobbyist, in your spare time, it is a necessary evil. Take the time and educate yourself on how to truly run your business as a independent artist.
For me it wasn’t really advice as much as it was a experience. If I had to put my experience into words it would be “surround your self with inspiring musicians, and people who push you to become musically better”. I also think the “DIY” route is the route most musicians should take nowadays.
In regards to “DIY” or being “indie”, I feel that artists should not only focus on creating music, but also spend a lot of time learning the business side of things.
I live in…
Los Angeles, and contrary to popular belief is TERRIBLE for musicians. Don’t get me wrong, if you are a skilled studio player that makes a living playing on other peoples recordings, it’s great. I am talking outside of the studio business.
If you are a artist trying to establish a fan base here, it is very very hard. Most well known venues implement a “pay to play” rule for bands to play at there.
This means the band has to sell a certain amount of tickets and is responsible money wise for tickets not sold. There is a bunch of things wrong with this. First of all, most likely you are selling tickets to people you already know, friends, family, etc. This means contrary to what the club tells you, you are not getting exposure because most, if not all people you sold tickets to, already knew you in the first place.
Even worse is that if there is a bunch of bands on a bill for the night, it is common for the other bands fans to leave when the band they came to see is done playing. This means you are left with pretty much only the people you hustled in. The venue doesn’t really promote the show either, they rely on the bands to do that for them. So let me truly break this down for you if you don’t understand what is happening, or if you don’t see how this is bad for bands AND the venue in the long run. The venue agrees to let for example 5 bands to play a show that night. Each of these bands has to sell for example 20 tickets at $10 per ticket. So each band is responsible for $200. If you don’t sell all your tickets, you have to pay the venue the money for the tickets you didn’t sell.
For the sake of argument let’s assume you sold all your tickets. This means the band is not responsible for any money at the end of the night. Cool right? wrong. You spend days, maybe weeks promoting this gig, and their venue as well to people, hustling day and night to sell your batch of tickets, just for your audience to end up coming to your gig, and spend money at THEIR venue on drinks, and maybe food. They are using you. By the end of the night, the venue has probably made a few thousand dollars off of tickets, drinks, food, etc. Yet the band doesn’t see a penny, although it’s their promotion and hustle that got the people in the club in the first place.
So what does the band get out of it? They get to play a show for their family and friends for 30 minutes. It is ridiculous that bands agree to these terms, but their is no shortage of bands doing this.
A lot of them don’t even know that this is NOT the norm around the world. Only in certain places. The reason I mentioned earlier that it is bad fo the venue in the long run as well is this. They are not building a reputation for their venue, and creating regular customers, they are relying on smaller local bands to supply them with customers.
There are a lot of clubs around the world that have a good reputation for bringing in great, talented bands, and therefor create regular customers that frequent the bar/club to check out who is playing, because they trust the venue to supply good entertainment. This secures the venues future, as well as help the bands that come in, seeing they are now actually playing for an audience that does not know them, and they have a chance to make some new fans, instead of dragging in the same friends that have seen them play a billion times. Yes, this means there is quality control on what bands get to play the venue, which is another thing these pay to play clubs don’t do. Literally anyone can play there, as long as you pony up the money.
So going back to what I said about a band being a business.
Treat it like one, don’t take deals where you do all the work and get nothing out of it. Don’t get charmed by the pretty lights and cool looking stage. It isn’t worth it.
I live in Los Angeles.
I have mixed feeling about the music scene here. I feel like here in LA we are all kinda stuck in a bubble. If you aren’t already well known or established it can be hard, because a lot of the opportunities that used to exist, do not exist anymore. At the same time how can you become well established without some opportunities?
I also love Los Angeles though, because I love a lot of different types of music, and I love expressive people, that is something you definitely see a lot of here in Los Angeles. It just sucks that bad business strategies like “pay to play” are now so common here.
Website & social media links: