I’m never one to shy away from looking for music outside of metal and rock because I believe a balanced music taste leads a decent mentality, and so far it’s proven to be pretty true in my case. Yet one thing that I’ve never really been able to get into (not from lack of trying, mind you) is folk. Not folk metal. Folk rock . . . type . . . stuff. In the case of Nic Nassuet it’s a good mix of things that I probably can’t put into a coherent sentence, but I digress. I actually had the pleasure to send Nic some questions, poking at him about a style that I’ve never really gotten into and the results for me were pretty satisfying. So please, read the conversation below for a pretty brilliant one man band if I do say so myself.
PS: bold = your’s truly
- As I’m for the most part vastly unfamiliar with folk as a style itself, where do you draw inspiration from be it other artists or past experience?
I am also very unfamiliar with folk as a style. I couldn’t name a single folk musician if you offered me $100,000.
As far as inspiration goes, most of my music appears in dreams, or just grabs me in the head at random points during the day. I hum, or sing, the parts into my phone’s voice recorder app, then plunk it out on an instrument later.
- The whole idea of folk is a simple one, but like all music I imagine it’s much harder to execute than just winging it. What’s the thought process, or even the recording process, that you go through when penning down a record or even just a single song? After I get the main body of the song out through an instrument, the lyrics, bridge, and chorus usually just come along organically. There isn’t a lot of conscious thought or effort involved, except for the conscious effort to be receptive to the music as it finds me.
- It’s your last full length album, “Eleutherios”, that got me interested in you and what I personally enjoyed was how well it flowed together and all the interesting bits and pieces that seemingly wouldn’t work but you make them, nonetheless. Do you plan to incorporate those same elements into your next album, or EP, or whatever it is you’ve planned or will you take a bit of a different approach to switch things up?
I appreciate you saying that. I think that was the result of a brain
muddied by so many different influences growing up. Led Zep, Black Sabbath, Slayer, Soley, Bjork, Eminem, DMX, Danzig, The Misfits, AFI, Lords of Acid, My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult, Frank Sinatra, and my mother’s acoustic guitar playing were all major influences, so I think that subconsciously those things just sort of melted together in my head and came out in the music.
I actually don’t make plans to incorporate any elements into the next album. I have no idea what it will sound like. I’ve got an ESP with EMGs, a couple of Gibson Les Pauls, some ancient style Greek lyres, an industrial synth, a steel tongue drum, a sitar, and a bunch of other stuff laying around right now. The music tells me what to do, and then I do it. I don’t really give it much thought. Sometimes an individual instrument has a song in it, and that comes out when I pick it up. So it could be that I pick up a random exotic in a music store and a Hungarian techno-march album comes out of it that afternoon. I have no idea what will happen next.
All I know is that there will be more music. The music has already told me that much. It just hasn’t told me when or how that music will come about.
- If I’m to understand correctly from the name that’s on the album covers you are, for the most part, a one man band. How does that really affect the song writing and thought processes? Other than the obvious fact of more creative freedom and doing what you want, naturally.
The songwriting process is what it is. I don’t think that I could write with another person. I would have to get the music out of my head and into an instrument and then give it to them to add their personal touch to it. I don’t think that it could be truly collaborative.
- Folk or folk rock, whatever you prefer to call it, isn’t exactly the most popular genre in America and not to mention California, as you know. What’s it like to go out and do shows as a folk band as opposed to what you might see for a pop or even a metal live show?
Actually, I don’t know. I have no idea what is popular. Are Justin Guarini and Kelly Clarkson still a thing? I’m not sure that we are a folk band, so I can’t really say what it is like to go out and do shows as a folk band. I used the term Gothic Folk for years since it was acoustic and lyrically dark, but we get called Neofolk, acoustic grunge, alternative, rock, and gothic rock as well.
I also don’t go out to metal or pop shows, so I honestly have no idea how what we do compares to what they do. There are no choreographed dance numbers or pyrotechnics in our shows, but I wouldn’t rule that out in the future. The response we have had at venues like the Whiskey a Go-Go, the Viper Room, and Dresden have all been really positive. We opened for a Mongolian Folk Metal band in Denver a few months ago, and the audience seemed to really enjoy what we were doing.
- According to what I’m seeing of your Bandcamp catalogue, you’ve done quite a few albums in just the last two years. How is it that you still manage to find time, creative motive, or even inspiration for your growing collection of music?
I’m pretty unmotivated, to be honest, and the inspiration finds me when it needs to. I usually hate everything that I do, so I loathe recording, but I do it anyway because it needs to be done. If I don’t let the music out, I go insane.
- There are just so many different genres out there in the world with many reiterations being made pretty damn often. If you could choose whatever genre you could do for a side project if you had all the necessary resources to do so.
I don’t really think in terms of genre, but I think that a gangsta-rap trance-hop industrial metal side project would be pretty cool. I’d like to collaborate with Davey Havok, Danzig, Lil Wayne, Eminem, Praga Khan, and Buzz McCoy on a song.
Thanks so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule of recording music and of course life to answer my questions! I can’t wait to hear what else you have in store but until then my good man, you have yourself a nice day!
Thank you so much for the questions! It was a pleasure. I wish you well.
Thank you once more to Nic for allowing me to prod at what goes on inside your brains, once again! Truly interesting, for me at least. If you want to hear what Nic is all about I’ll provide links down below as I always do, and I can’t help but recommend to keep an eye out on this man’s work. I know I will because I definitely want to see where else he can go, and I’ve confidence it’ll be nothing short of splendid.
LISTEN to the latest song from Nic Nassuet, “How the Gods Kill”, on Bandcamp here.
LISTEN to the latest album from Nic Nassuet, “Eleutherios”, on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Nic Nassuet on Facebook here.