Exclusive interview with Isaac Doyel, lead of the music project Dead ChainsOne of The Nebula Centre Project's primary goals is to curate content and media. In doing this, The Project supports artists and creators. In this article, The Nebula Centre Project interviews Isaac Doyel, an independent artist and owner of their own label.
Interviewer: AP Raymond
Date Published: 05 March 2020
A.P. Raymond: Hello, I am AP Raymond (APR) from The Nebula Centre Project with Isaac Doyel (ID), lead of the industrial band, Dead Chains.
APR: Hello Mr. Doyel, thank you for giving The Nebula Centre Project the opportunity for this interview.
APR: Before we start, could you share a bit about yourself? Particularly how you initially began creating music?
ID: Well I was super in to the vaporwave style of music remixes in 2016, when it was arguably at it's height of popularity. I was visiting my best friend (nudge nudge) for the summer and while using one of his computers I started making a remix of the song Bring Me to Life, by the gothic Nu Metal band Evanescence, using rudimentary production techniques in the program called Audacity (which I still use to record vocals). I ended up making a few EP's that summer blending various styles of chopped up songs with heavy reverb and reverse playback methods. From there I started what would be my career in making Vaporwave. I was getting in to 80s and 90s pop and would remix those songs that I was enjoying. In I believe 2016 or '17 I released my first "album" of remixed music, mainly influenced by Vangelis' Blade Runner score and Macintosh Plus' Floral Shoppe album. And that was basically my start. I only made one copy of the album on CD which I gave to my friend for free.
APR: The difference in sound and genre between your older and current music is interesting. Did anything from your prior work influence your current work? I don't know many people who transitioned from a lighter toned genre, such as vapourwave, to industrial metal.
ID: It's mostly in the drums and the way I produce and engineer them. In the 80s there was a popular way of engineering drums called "gated reverb" that I simply cannot get enough of. The connection is there between most genres from the 80s particularly in pop and industrial music.
APR: Intriguing. So you would say that music from 1980s was your primary influence in your past and current work?
ID: Yes that's exactly right.
APR: As your mentioned previously, do you feel your production and engineering methods have changed since you originally began, aside from general improvement?
ID: Well in the beginning, I focused more on softer tones and grander feelings of space and atmosphere. As time has went on I have focused my efforts primarily on getting a harder and punchier drum and bass sound, with tighter, almost claustrophobic tones.
APR: That does sound more along the lines of what you have produced with Dead Chains. What are you working on currently? Anything planned for a release soon?
ID: Well I've just released a new single from my upcoming album called Mode Déprimée, and with it I'm trying to move into somewhat of a more alternative pop direction, while still being able to retain my industrial fans who've grown to enjoy my work as Dead Chains. Other than that I still have some side projects coming out off and on in the future, primarily Goblin Summoner, my electro project.
APR: You mentioned Goblin Summoner as a side project, do you have any other music projects you work on when you are not working with Dead Chains?
ID: I do. My favorite being my metal project Terminal Earth. I try to have a few side projects like that so I don't feel restricted by genres.
APR: Quite interesting. Regarding your comment about Dead Chain's "alternative pop direction", is that where you hope to explicitly guide Dead Chains to? Where do you see Dead Chains in the future?
ID: Very much so, it's something that I've been planning for a while. Before I ever made an industrial song, the original Dead Chains demos were very pop, influenced mainly by Depeche Mode's Violator, and Madonna's True Blue. At the same time, as I said, I'm not completely dropping all the industrial elements, only evolving them into something new. I hope my fans can get behind that. As far as where I want to see the band in the future, I'm not going to kid myself and say something like "I want to sell out arenas" or something like that. I'm just looking to do what I enjoy and hope people enjoy it too. As mentioned before, I have an album in the works to hopefully solidify my sound.
APR: That is a very impressive outlook. Aside from Dead Chains, I also understand you own your own label, Super Sledge Recordings. Is it exclusive to Dead Chains, or are you planning to expand it to other artists?
ID: It's mainly for my own music, to unify my various projects. But I also want to use it to help people who are just getting started to figure things out.
APR: That is very admirable. Are you accepting any new indie artists, regardless of genre, or are you looking for it to be specific to a certain genre?
ID: If I like the music, anything is welcome, but it has to be something I want to be attached to I guess.
APR: By "attached", are you referencing a personal connection, like the music resonates with you, or regarding reputation?
ID: A little of both.
APR: Haha. A good response. What are you hoping to accomplish with Dead Chains and Super Sledge Recordings going forward? Do you see any of your previously mentioned side projects becoming more of a full time commitment?
ID: I'm mostly focused on Dead Chains as it reflects my feelings in the majority of situations, the other projects are like seasonal moods that may be there one minute and gone the next. My main goal with all of this, with the label and with Dead Chains, is to express myself and maybe help others express themselves too.
APR: That is a very admirable goal. Anything else you wanted to share?
ID: Well I'd like to say that I enjoyed answering these questions and any future correspondence is very welcomed.
APR: Thank you. It was great talking to you. The Nebula Centre Project and me, both wish you luck with your endeavours.
You can visit Dead Chains, as well as check out any new releases, on Bandcamp.
You can visit Super Sledge Recordings through Bandcamp as well.
Want to support Dead Chains and Super Sledge Recordings? See Isaac Doyel's Patreon page.