As Particles Collide is the solo music project of Kyle Breidenfield
Kyle started this project in 2018 after bouncing around in other small projects and bands on and off for many years. He wanted to branch out and create a project of his own. All Kyle has ever wanted to do is write and record music. If the music he creates brings anyone any of the feelings music has brought out in him then he’s done all he set out to do with this project.
As Particles Collide released it’s first five song EP “Fire Fly” in November 2019. Then As Particles Collide released the song “Way Up There” on April 30th 2021.“Way Up There” was the first single to come out off the first full length album “Careful Is What We Wished For” which came out in it’s entirety on June 11th 2021. The entire album underwent another round of mixing after the April 30th release of “Way Up There” to bring out the low end in the drums and bass, this is why the single version has less of a full sound than the one released on the album.
As Particles Collide’s second full length album “The Crimson Black” was released on April 8th 2022 to critical acclaim. London Peaky said “It’s a beautiful, terrifying journey to the edge of lunacy and beyond – and I very much doubt there’s a better album released this year.” The first single, “Kill the Comedian,” was released as a music video on YouTube on February 25th 2022. The Crimson Black is a hard hitting dark sci-fi journey, stay tuned!
Published on 8/1/2022
(mXf//Colin) It’s great to meet you Kyle, been a big fan for quite some time now. First of all, wanna say congrats on your latest LP, The Crimson Black. It’s great to see so much critical acclaim and growing fanbase!
(Kyle) Well it’s totally surreal, I had no expectations and some fans are saying this is the album of the year. And I’m already working on my next LP, and some collaborations with Rick from SparraLIMB.
(mXf//Anna) I’ve been wanting to ask you, when it comes to bands and other artists, what was your early influences? What artists influenced your music? I’m very curious about that.
(Kyle) I mean, the first. I mean, gosh, even I can go back to when I was younger, but the stuff that really influences me as an artist, I would have to say Hum, Hum is a huge influence on me. I just feel like that band changed the way I looked at music. Some other big influences. I mean, I really like a ton of metal. I love Slayer. I love As I Lay Dying, Misery Signals,Sepultura anything with Max Cavalera. Soulfly, Cavalera Conspiracy. Those are great, great bands I was really into. I mean, I remember kind of watching Nirvana come up. And just that whole grunge scene, and Nine Inch Nails. I feel like in my own music, I’m kind of trying to push metal and punk rock into like the shoegaze spacey sound that’s what it feels kind of like what I’m trying to do at least from my perspective.
(mXf//Anna) Yeah, I heard in your music a lot of punk rock influences. I actually even I was listening to your music today. And I compare it with refused. I don’t know if you’re familiar with the band’s music?
(Kyle) Love them. They’re awesome.
(mXf//Anna) And yeah, I see some similarities. I like it very much.
(Kyle) Well, that’s a huge compliment. Thank you. Thank you.
(mXf//Anna) No problem. Thank you.
(mXf//Colin) Awesome. And on the art side, too. There’s a sci-fi theme. And I think you you mentioned, like, I was curious how that fits into your, like the theme of your music. So The Crimson Black, and you mentioned something in the beginning of I think it relates to sci-fi. I was curious more about that?
(Kyle) Well, you know, I’ve always been, I mean I grew up in kind of the 80s comic boom into the 90s there. I always loved the Star Wars movies growing up, and just all things sci-fi, I mean, me and my fiancé, we love watching old, like hokey sci-fi movies. I mean, I kind of like the whole gambit of sci-fi. And I just find, when I got back into really doing music, I mean obviously I have a full time job outside of music. But when I got back into doing music as like, that’s my main hobby, my main outlet. I really, I had projects I was just singing for at that time, they were other people’s bands. And to come up with a way to sort of write material and they had all these songs already done they didn’t have lyrics or vocals for, I would just jot down ideas. And I found myself kind of going to concepts from science fiction. And I really enjoy writing about those sorts of things. So the first album I did Careful Is What We Wish For, sort of most of that stuff was really personal and I found running through the mix it would, it kinda you keep reliving these things maybe you don’t want to. And so when I started working on the Crimson Black, I kind of thought back to my days of writing up these lists of concepts to write songs about and sort of really went that way, and it just made, it made the process much more enjoyable. And I find even lyrically, and creatively, I feel like it makes a better overall finished product.
(mXf//Colin) Yeah, you know, that’s something to which I didn’t notice until a couple days ago, I was listening to Crimson Black, and then I looked like, you know, we hear one song at a time, or at least I didn’t pick up on it. But then when I looked at the list, you have three to kind of go together like “Today I Consider Myself”, “The Luckiest Man”, “On the Face of the Earth”. And I was wondering like, how is that theme, or is that was that I’m assuming was intentional, but that was really interesting. I have not seen that very often before.
(Kyle) No one has caught that! I’m working on a collaboration right now with Rick from SparraLIMB for my next album, and then I’m going to collaborate on a single with him or I don’t know, we’re really having a lot of fun working together right now. So I’m not sure what it’s all gonna lead to, but it’s just we’re working on one track for my next LP right now, and I was talking with him about how I did a 3 part song no one noticed.
(mXf//Colin) Yeah, so “Today I Consider Myself”, “The Luckiest Man”, “On the Face of the Earth”, so there’s a bigger theme going on there? And I was curious how you came up with that?
(Kyle) That was the one super personal track I wrote. And so I was talking to Rick about how I did that. No one’s caught it. And he kind of laughed. And so that’s a line from Lou Gehrig. When Lou Gehrig retired, he said “Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”
(mXf//Colin) Oh, I’ve seen that clip, yeah.
(Kyle) Right, right. And so ALS runs in my family. And as far back as I can trace, every father, grandfather, has passed away from ALS. So my father died that way, my grandfather died that way, both of my uncle’s died that way. So it was kind of like “The Luckiest Man”, like really the part that’s more of a song gets kind of really angry at the end. And so sort of just that’s the one song where I really kind of let some really personal stuff out. And I had really had a lot of fun on Careful Is What We Wished For doing the sort of noise tracks like that “Towhead”. And “Thanatos” leads into “Into The Light”. And I wanted to do that, again, I felt like the first time I did it, it didn’t go as well. So I really kind of wanted this really long song, with these experimental parts on the front and back end. But then I kind of liked the idea of having it broken up. So it just, it just kind of, that was the first thing I did when I got done with Careful [the album Careful Is What We Wished For]. I started playing around with that. And just it was a little bit of a different sound, I felt like and that was the first time I started with bass. Like, ever since then I start with bass I find because I started as a guitar player. And I’ve been playing bass now for many, many years. But I find if I write the guitar first, it’s so easy to fall into sort of just somewhat following along, but if I write the bass, first I’ll come up with something rhythmic, and really cool. And then I can kind of go way off the page on guitar and fit that with that being my first instrument. So that whole song changed really my writing process too.
(mXf//Colin) Interesting, and I wouldn’t have guessed that about the bass because I always think of, I’m not a musician, but I feel like melody coming more from the guitar. That’s pretty cool that you actually had, you know, starting with bass to put your foundation in.
(Kyle) I’ve been doing that because the only instrument I don’t play, I use drum loops from Beta Monkey. And I’ve done a couple small things. Before I was really going about music how I am now where I was lucky enough to have a friend who’s just, I mean he recorded an EP with Steve Albini. He’s just, he’s such an amazing, he can do everything from singing, playing guitar, play the drums, and he would come in and play drums for me. And I recorded a couple of tracks in the studio with him just for fun, just to create something, to get it out. And I started trying to pursue music again and ended up singing. And I was in a full on band for a little bit. And then I rolled into a project which is basically doing what I do now. It was one guy And I said to him your drums sound really good because drums have always been really important to me. And I tried drum machines in the past and I’m like, this just doesn’t do it. For me. I’ve always wanted to kind of be a one man show, because it’s just to some degree easier. You have to rely on other people, being for one talented, of the same mind, and punctual. So it’s just kind of always a lot to put a band together. And this guy he was using this Beta Monkey, this fellow I worked with and it’s real drummers recorded in a studio. And I mean I do a lot of like playing around and getting things the way I want and making arrangements, but it was the first time I was like, wow I can really do music on my own.
(mXf//Anna) I’m curious, like, how are you able to connect everything you told me that you’re working at the same time with another job and you’re doing music, like how you’re able to connect it and not get lost in the whole process?
(Kyle) Well, you know, it’s, for me music is what I really like to do with my free time. Since I’ve had this project, I used to play video games a little more, or watch TV a little more, I’ll find myself after work going into the computer and either working out mixes or plugging in and playing something, it’s just really what I like to do for fun. And I’ve kind of always been, you know, pedal to the floor pedal to the metal kind, if I’m doing something I’m kind of all-in. And so it just, it kind of just naturally comes to me. And the more this grows, and the more success I see with it, the more I just really like doing it, it just kind of lights that fire even more, you know, and like I said earlier, having someone to collaborate with I haven’t really collaborate with anyone for about four years and prior to COVID. And that’s just been, really watching the song go in directions I would never take it, that just aren’t necessarily my wheelhouse or something I do. It’s been just an amazing experience.
(mXf//Anna) Yeah, if you could, today pick up anyone to collaborate with who would that be?
(Kyle) I mean, if I could just pick anyone. Gosh. I mean, I’m kinda so I really honestly would like to collaborate with Tom DeLonge from Angels and Airwaves. A guy who, kind of the way he came up punk rock, when I got to punk rock, that was huge. For me, I had a phase where it was like anything that’s on a major label or corporate can just all, you know go to hell. And that’s all I listen to most of my mid to later teenage years. And to kind of see him go from where he started from, and seeing them live before they had Travis Barker, no offense to them, but it was a joke. I was just blown away how bad it was; I could play every song on Cheshire Cat. And I’m watching them just slaughter these songs. I’m a teenager, I just got my driver’s license. And just like how is this this terrible? And to where he is now with, you know, Angels and Airwaves and how different of a band that is and the interesting sounds they come up with and kind of how that’s, I mean that lineups changed; it’s kind of his thing. So to work with someone that kind of has that “This is my project” sort of thing would be interesting to pick their brain I think from from my perspective.
(mXf//Anna) I understand. Thank you.
(mXf//Colin) Yeah, and you guys are kind of like minded in that way too. That’s interesting.
(Kyle) Yeah, that’s a big influence, for sure.
(mXf//Colin) Nice. And I was curious, then you kind of alluded to, but I always like to ask musicians about the songwriting, like, so when you were singing and collaborating with other bands, you did the writing? Like the music was there, and then you did the writing, and I think maybe coming from the singing? Now, when you do your own projects, like even starting with “Careful What We Wish For”, did you start more with the music this time when you do for yourself? Or do you still start with the lyrics?
(Kyle) Well, guitar being my first instrument, I always started with guitar Traditionally, when I had a drummer, you know, I would write the guitar parts. And it wasn’t really until I started doing production that I even got used to writing multiple guitar parts, I really write something that I could play all at one time. And then work that with a drummer. And once I had the guitar down, like once I had a song that I felt the arrangement was solid, then I start plugging vocals. And so I still do the same thing I find a lot of times when I’m finishing up for the night or finished up working on a song, I’ll want to run through it one time, or a couple of times before I save it just to make sure there hasn’t been some glitch or you know, just to get it saved properly. And I’ll usually get my lyric pad out just because I’m sitting there listening to the song. And as I’m kind of going through that, I guess the production process now that I know that I do that part, I usually use that time to just jot down a concept or maybe something that’s partial line, or something that actually works out as a line. So I usually always write my lyrics post music, like, the music always comes first, every now and again a line might pop into my head that I think might work for something or be a title of a song. And I try to use modern technology because I find if I’m just like “Oh, I’ll remember that”, it’s gone. So I’ll hit my notepad on my phone and type it down, and maybe bring that into something later, and I’m like “Oh that would really fit this sound”.
(mXf//Colin) Awesome. Well, that’s really interesting. And that’s why I was wondering, like, how you bring the song together, and then you know, bring in the lyrics after? So that’s pretty cool. And I also wanted to go back; like you’re doing a lot, it’s impressive! You’re doing all the instruments. And you also have, like, I noticed on your Instagram, you have a lot of art. And a lot of it is lyrics, but it’s so cool. It’s artistic, like how you overlay with the images? And there’s other images there too. Is that like an afterthought? Or is that a part of the whole, like end-to-end creative? Like, do you think of your music and imagery as a cohesive creative?
(Kyle) Yeah, I really kind of do. A lot of it is I when I wanted to do a lyric book, and I was just playing around, and I used the graphic designer for my first EP Firefly. And, not that I was really disappointed or anything, but I just felt like I think if I worked this myself I could get more of what I want, just not having to try to translate that to someone. And so I got just a free I think it’s Gimp free app, it’s kind of sort of like a Photoshop thing, sort of playing around and now it’s become as I finish the music on a song, like the process I was talking about, on the prior question, I’m writing lyrics, I probably have a title or some ideas for titles, I’ll because that’s easier for me to work on than music, music still requires some brain fuel, you know, I usually have a cup of coffee after work. And try to use that last bit of brain power on some music and I’ll kind of just play around with art a little bit while I’m watching TV at night unwind and before bed. And it’s sort of just been a fun thing to do, as I’m working on a song, sort of put together some imagery that feels like it relates or it’s translates what the song is supposed to be about. And I did a lyric book for Careful [the album Careful Is What We Wished For], and I did a lyric book for Crimson [the album The Crimson Black]. And I plan on doing a lyric book for whatever the next LP I’m doing will be titled. It’s just I’ve actually I already have a couple lyrical artworks for the songs I’ve been working on.
(mXf//Colin) Awesome. And those lyric books are those on your website? Because I’ve seen you’d have some pretty interesting merch, and I’ll come back to that. But do you have the lyric books online?
(Kyle) Yeah, yeah, I do. I think they’re three dollars and fifty cents, I always give them away with any order. I mean, I really did merch as just a way to kind of give back to people, like I mean if you send me your address on Twitter in a DM I’ll send you some shirts, no problem. Anybody who helps me out or does something like this. Music always cost so much when you had to go to the studio, and being able to do that all on my own, I find there’s not much costs. So I sort of put that into making some merch and just, I give it away to friends that like the project or anybody I collaborate with, or it’s just sort of fun. You know I sell a little bit of it as well. But on my orders, I always stuff a few more stickers and lyric books in there than they asked for.
(mXf//Colin) Cool, yeah. And you’ve got a great, I mean I would consider it a brand, going. You know because “As Particles Collide”, actually I was curious too; if I go back to some of your themes, like what is the story behind the name “As Particles Collide”?
(Kyle) That’s, I was actually talking to, I think it was with Rick, who I’m collaborating with right now. So the first band that was talking about where it was a full on band, everybody’s playing an instrument they want to do live shows. And I came in they had I think like eight songs and I was signing for them. That was the first song of theirs, it was actually my favorite song of theirs too, that I worked on. And that’s what I titled it, I titled it “As Particles Collide”. Their name wasn’t bad by any means, but I wasn’t a giant fan, I was kind of neutral on the thing. And I remember when I titled the song thinking “Wow, I really wish we could call the band this, I really like this title.” And I kind of logged it in the back of the head there, “OK, if we’re doing anything on our own or in charge of naming something, I think that’s what I want to go with.” So it was really, it was just the title of a song I wrote for another band.
(mXf//Colin) Cool, I like that! It’s like organic, and then it kind of took a life of its own.
(Kyle) It really did.
(mXf//Colin) Awesome. OK, and I’m curious too about live? Because it looks like, well maybe some of it’s from like singing with other bands, or I’m not sure the whole story? Because there’s some cool shots of you live. But then if you play all the instruments, how do you perform live? That’s something I was wondering?
(Kyle) “As Particles Collide” has never performed live.
(mXf//Colin) Oh, OK OK.
(Kyle) I would have if I could do it. Not that I couldn’t do it. But I can’t obviously, I’m not an octopus. I can’t play other instruments.
(mXf//Colin) That’s what I was wondering about! How did you do that? So now I get what you’re saying.
(Kyle) Right! Those shots are from a music video I did, it’s on YouTube, for the first LP Careful [the album Careful Is What We Wished For] for the song “Dreams”. It’s the only one of the music videos with me in it. I actually have six music videos for Crimson [the album The Crimson Black] another ones coming out tomorrow. And “Dreams”, I did some shots of me. And I what I did is I just, I have a second garage at my house, and I put up just a sheet and did some kind of green screen sort of stuff where I just play the song in the background and just sort of rocked out to it, and videotaped that and match it up with the music. And so I was able to take some still shots from that, because I feel like they look kind of cool, and use them. But no; I know some people I think that would be capable of maybe pulling off what I’m doing production-wise in a live setting, but it’s never been something I’ve even broached doing. And the way that I write, I honestly couldn’t play an As Particles Collide song. Because I write it, and then I walk away from it, and start working on the next track. Not that I couldn’t actually play it if I took the time to go back over it and get it memorized. But I don’t have those songs committed to memory. When I used to play music live, I mean, we would hammer those songs, just again and again and again until you could wake up and just start singing and playing that song. It was, you could play it in your sleep. Right? Like you don’t want to make mistakes live. So you really, and I sort of love that about this style of a project where I can just, because I would always come up with things and just be able to come up with something, get it down. And then just keep moving to the next piece of creativity, the next piece of creation or writing. That to me, that’s all I ever wanted to do. The first time I went to a professional studio I walked out and felt like I just wish I could live in there. Like I just wish I could spend all my time there,, that’s all I want to do. Not that I don’t like the live thing, but I love creating in the studio thing way more.
(mXf//Colin) Amazing. So when you, like when you produce, let’s say even like, especially because you’re saying, you know, you’re getting a lot more advanced so let’s say Crimson Black, do you produce? Do you have like your own studio? Do you have to rent hours from a place, you know, I don’t know what they’re called. But like where I’ve seen studios that rent out to different musicians?
(Kyle) No, actually I do it all here. I do it all here at home. Mostly right here when sitting in this room. I mean, for all the guitars and stuff I’m just plugging it in through an interface into the computer, so that all works out. And then with the drums being pre recorded in a professional studio, and that’s really the biggest thing. When you record, I remember my buddy who recorded with Steve Albini said they spent the whole first day just setting up drums. He’s like “We spent I think 8 to 10 hours just getting the drums setup”, right? I mean, so that’s, to have that burden off – if I was playing the drums I would have to have a studio space, I’d have to have a lot more equipment and a lot more ability to do that. And then some, a lot of times with vocals I have the whole setup with the shield, and I actually just upgraded for my next LP, just upgraded to a really nice condenser mic,, I had a decent one but I’ve already noticed a big difference from that, it’s really cool! And I usually go out to my second garage I have on my property, like I was talking about, because I if I have something down cold, like I’ve rehearsed it to do it live I have no problem singing that in front of people. But that whole playing around process feels very exposed, like I don’t have my clothes on, like I’m giving a speech in my underwear. And so I really like to do that on my own. And that was one thing I learned during my first EP, through this whole process we’ve kind of been talking about where I’m writing and recording, and coming up with these parts; I felt like “How do I do that vocally?” Because what I always do with vocals is I would just hammer that song, just like I was talking, just sing it and sing it and sing it until I owned it. I was like “God I really wish I could just walk up to the mic and work it like I do these parts on guitar or these parts on bass”, where I just keep tinkering with it till I’m OK with it. And I’ve started doing that vocally, just sort of playing around with it. And I lay down a lot of tape, I lay down a lot of takes and different ways, so when I go back to mix I have a lot of different options to kind of choose from. And it takes a lot more time on the mix side. But on the rehearsal side I don’t have to spend 40 hours or something crazy grinding through a song until I have it right. So I usually go out and do the vocals in a place where no one in the house can hear me, and play around with it until I get something I’m happy with.
(mXf//Colin) This is fascinating, because when I listen, it sounds very, like, I don’t hear any, like chops, or I don’t know what the right word would be. How do you mix it? You’re able to mix it and make it all seamless? Is that right?
(Kyle) Yeah, yeah, that has been a process too. One of the most important things I found was on all my tracks labeling any effects, what guitar I used. Because I would find I would come back to something and be like “What the hell pedal was I using? What sound was that?” And I’d spent hours just trying to dial that back in. And sometimes eventually just give up and replay the whole thing. So that that saves me a lot of time. But it’s interesting with these drum loops, you’re kind of stuck to if you’re going to play that part, you’re going to play it right on time and fit it. So that sort of forces me to have to be tight on all those things, and it sort of all flows together. As long as I come back and I use the same thing I was using before I find that sounds pretty dialed right in.
(mXf//Colin) Yeah, that’s amazing! I would never guessed that, that you mix it like that.
(Kyle) I do the music that way, and I do the vocals all in one day. I usually do that on a day I have off. And on a day that I don’t have my daughter, so I have nothing else to do. And I’ll just spend four to six hours, singing a song, laying down a bunch of takes. And then I seriously probably spend a week to two weeks on the mix and figuring out how I want all that to sound.
(mXf//Anna) Awesome. I wanted to ask like, since you are a one man band, is there any other instrument you would love to learn how to play, other than the ones you play already?
(Kyle) Yeah, you know, I guess to, to some degree I do play the keyboard, but I feel like a hack. Anything I’ve done on the keys, there’s been a lot of takes to get it right. I upgraded to a line six helix pedal that has a lot of abilities. So I find I can get a lot of keyboard sounds out of the bass and guitar through that effects board. And anytime I can do that, it’s so much easier to dial that in. So I really wish, for all intents and purposes for what I’m doing at this point, I could really play the piano better. But I’m lucky, my daughter is getting nothing but older and I’ve had her playing piano for about six years now. And she understands music at a level that I don’t – I play by ear, you know I still don’t read music. The other day; she was playing something with me and she’s like what note are you playing Dad? And I’m like “I don’t know? I think it’s an A maybe?” And she just looked at me, like “So how do you do everything you do and that and all this stuff?” So she’s actually my piano teacher, she loves giving me little lessons. And I’ve been picking it up, I’ve picked up things about music I didn’t know for my own kid. And that that’s pretty crazy. And I guess though if it’s a wish list thing, I wish I could play the drums, that would be really sweet to be able to [play drums]. I have some friends, a couple guys that I look up to that I kind of always aspired to have their sort of level of talent, that they can do it all. I mean, I mean just amazing drummers! The guy I was talking about playing drums with, and the few things I did in between any band projects I had, I think we would have four or five practices that comprised of half hour to an hour going over one song, and he would have that song down colder than I had, it’s my own material and we’re ready to go to the studio. And it’s not, I mean you guys have listened to my stuff, a lot of stuff can be a progressive song where we don’t really play the same thing twice. So drummers always kind of looked at me cross-eyed, like “Really? You want me to write this many parts for this three minutes song?” So to have a guy that you could do that, that would be really cool sometimes. But I also find that using the loops I use, it’s pushed me in directions I wouldn’t go, and brought out a creativity and sound that I really love, that I don’t think I would have done. I kind of naturally have a faster pace from liking punk and metal so much. And I find, not that I can speed the drums up, but a lot of times I use them as is and it just pushes me in different directions that creates a really cool sound. But yeah, long story short drums and piano. And first I guess I would say piano, because it would help this project more.
(mXf//Colin) Yeah, and that is interesting about the pace. So I never thought about that, like, when you do you have to kind of align your tracks to the drums that you that you choose? Like, let’s say, like, actually, maybe I should take a step back – how do you pick the drum loops that you want to, you know, go with your song?
(Kyle) That has been something that I sort of, well the first LP got me to refine a lot of things in all directions. And drums have always been like a really important thing to me in any music I like and aspire to do. And so I felt like I knew drums, but I’ve really I feel like over the last couple, especially the last album, and I feel like I kind of got that dialed in on the first full length album is just the mood you create with drums the the way you drive that song is like crash, you know is your crash cymbals get really loud for your choruses or your big parts. And as everything gets quiet and your hi-hat goes away, or is closed for your quiet little, you know, spacey airy parts, kind of dialing that all in. And then using you know, what I use is kind of labeled as you know, open hi-hat or closed hi-hat or crash cymbal. And so what I do now is I’ll take a set of drums that were all recorded at one time all at the same time on the same drum set at the same beats per minute, and drag all those and label them like this is the stuff with a crash cymbal or an open hi-hat, or these are fills and build out; so that’s how I start my track I build out all the drums I want to use. And then I have all these parts and I’m like OK well I want to start, you know a lot of times I might not start at the beginning of a song, I just like I really liked this part, I want to try playing something over that. Let’s drag that down into the tracks I’m going to have be the drums, and then typically start playing bass. Sometimes I do rhythm guitar first, it’s pretty rare now though because most of Crimson [the album The Crimson Black] was all started from bass and I just feel like it created a product that sounds much more like a band. It sounds like there is a bass player, and there is a guitar player, and like these are all artists that are decent at what they do at least.
(mXf//Colin) For sure. So it’s kind of a foundational layer, is that right?
(Kyle) Yeah, yep. Yeah, I start with the drums and either rhythm guitar or bass; like I say it’s typically been bass now because I feel like I just get a better product with the bass that way.
(mXf//Colin) Nice! And the drums, so you have these tracks, do you like, listen to them? Like to get a feel? Or are you able, like you were saying, are you able to find certain parts that are labeled like “hi-hat” and you can just pull that down? Like, how do you get it together? Because I’m like, man how would you get a mental model around what your track is going to be, how it’s going to come together?
(Kyle) Well for the last thing I just did, it’s actually one of the happiest; it rocks at the end but there’s barely any distortion on it. I guess it has like an Angels and Airwaves vibe, sort of I guess I would say. I knew I kind of, I’m like, gosh I’ve been doing all this heavy stuff, I want to do something airy and light. I want to do something that I want to tinker with. So I heard these drum parts in one of the packs I have. And it was really soft. And I’m like that could be fun, and I listened to all the parts like that, and then kind of dragged down my favorite ones and pieced together the parts that I liked. And then went, “OK, I want to play over that”, and then I started tinkering with the bass and then just keep building it out step by step.
(mXf//Colin) Cool, cool. Well, it’s amazing, like how you’re able to put all that together and build it out. And then, you know, when I listen as a finished product everything is really fit. I mean, that’s really impressive.
(Kyle) Thank you, wow, thanks.
(mXf//Colin) It’s really awesome. It’s really interesting how you put that together. And that was one of my big things I was curious about, you know before we met today, is like I wonder how he produces that and gets everything together? So I really appreciate you sharing that!
(Kyle) Yeah, you know, trying to produce music was something I started trying to do at about 10 or 11. The first thing I ever sort of came across, or I could do something, I think it was an alarm clock in the 80s that my mother bought. And it had, you could put a cassette in it and hit record. And it had a microphone. And so I would like play something in the background and a radio, and then try to play something else through like headphones or another device or make a sound. And I would try to like mix these commercials or lines from movies with music I liked. It’s just weird stuff. And then once I started playing guitar, same thing, I would like boombox things, and then play it on a stereo, and then use that same boombox to play another part over it and try to hear what that would sound like. And then I used to play on four tracks in high school, it’s always been something I wanted to do. In production I draw on a lot my experiences in professional studios, with people that were really well versed at what they were doing in that studio, them walking you through that process and learning how to do things in a professional way, if I didn’t have that background, or that knowledge I would be lost at how to do this project.
(mXf//Colin) Amazing. That’s really, really good experience. And then you’re able to build all this stuff on your own. Do you find that it helped also on the creative side, like of course all the skills like you just mentioned, has that influenced the music itself? Or is it just more like purely on like, the skills around producing and mixing and things like that?
(Kyle) I guess I feel like what really happened to me with being able to produce at home, when your a band and you’re going into studio and it costs, I don’t know, anywhere from $40 to $100 on up dollars an hour, you’re not going in there to play around, you’re rehearsing that stuff until your fingers bleed, and you want to get in there and get it done as efficiently as possible. This kind of had a like, Metallica Black Album feel like I can do whatever I want. I have unlimited hours. There’s no dollar signs attached to this. And that’s why I started playing with things like keyboard and playing with things like synthesizer, because I loved like Nine Inch Nails, or Angels and Airwaves, or these bands that kind of, or even like Pink Floyd, these these bands that have these really interesting sounds in the background. I always felt like when I was doing music, it would be so cool to have no costs, you know that you’re stuck to this “Oh gosh if this takes any longer it’s going to cost us, you know, $500” sort of thing; to be able to just walk in play around with sounds and go “Wow it’s totally cool to lay some keyboard over that” or “This spacey sound totally changes what this does.” That’s the beauty. That’s what I love about this, you know is I can just work something, until it’s something I want. I’m not done with something until it’s something I like to listen to.
(mXf//Colin) Interesting, and that’s, I mean there’s a lot there like I had never thought about that before until you just said it and I’m kind of thinking back like Pink Floyd. I used to listen to a lot in high school and like college days. I never picked up on that. But you’re right. They do have a kind of, it’s almost like an ambiance to their music in a way, and I never had thought about that before until right now when you said that that’s really interesting.
(Kyle) Right? I was kind of always jealous that these huge bands that that’s where they start, they just walk into a studio. Well, it’s let’s just fuck around and see what comes out guys like that. I was like, wow, I wish I could be in that position that would be so fun. And you know, it’s awesome for modern technology to kind of make this be something a regular guy can do.
(mXf//Colin) Yeah, I mean, you’re there now. That’s what it’s really amazing. I mean, that’s exactly what you’re doing, right?
(mXf//Anna) What is the hardest part of the creative process for you? Is it for example, the idea that needs to come to you with you know, with audio for music, or actually like putting this idea into the sound? What is the hardest part?
(Kyle) The hardest part of this project is always production and mix. It’s that brass tacks work part of it. I spend so many more hours working on those things than I really do playing or singing. The creative part to create a song that, I mean knock on wood, it comes pretty easy for me. I just, I love to just jam, I want to just “Oh wow, this drumbeat sounds cool. Let’s see what sounds we can make over it.” And then “Oh wow, it would be fun to sing this way over it.” I just love it if I could hire something out, if I could, you know if I could just wave a magical wand and had all the dollars I needed, that’s what I would hire out is just someone that we’re like minded. I trust them, they’re great at what they do. Bring in somebody that could just do all the production and just let me do nothing but create and play.
(mXf//Colin) I see the effort there. Like, you know, sweat. But at the same time I feel like a lot of your magic comes from there too. I don’t know if it would be; you know I get what you said “wave a magic wand”. I’m just wondering, you know could anybody put it back together the way that you put it back together? You know what I mean?
(Kyle) Well, yeah, that’s the thing. That’s what I mean by like minded, you know I would want someone that was pretty legit. But I think for me, that’s what would be pretty cool is to bring in someone that, I mean even on the production side a lot of what I’m doing is by ear. You know, just like the music thing I don’t; I feel like a jack of all trades, master of none. So it’s like to bring in someone that would really understand, like the nitty-gritty brass tacks of, you know you need things if this many megahertz, if you want this sound, and I don’t to be honest, I don’t understand that stuff. I just go “Oh, this sounds good, cool, next.” So I think that would actually maybe even bring things up another level, if I had that production guy that was a big brain, but it’s like anything in a band or a music if you’re not like minded, if you’re not kind of having the same vision on a song or at least sort of enjoy the same kind of material that can be a struggle. You know, if you if you guys like the same sounds, and you’re kind of going for the same thing, then that can be a ton of fun.
(mXf//Colin) Interesting, I didn’t think about it that way too. That’s a good point that if you collaborate with somebody, they could actually add, you know, one plus one equals three. Yeah, that would be really interesting to see!
(Kyle) Right? Like I was saying, so the track I’m collaborating on, just to start over, we reached out to each other and we were like “Yeah, we’re both interested in it.” I was kind of, I already kind of wanted to collaborate with this with this gentleman. But wanted to wait till Crimson [the album The Crimson Black] drops, because I knew it was probably going to be more his style. And I wanted him to hear this, and then reach out. Because I think if it’s going to work that will push it in that direction. And so it’s funny, he had reached out to me about the album and I said “Do you want to do something?” And he goes “That was my next question.” So it was, we were kind of already on the same page. So I actually for this, because he’s a really good bass player, I feel he’s better on lead guitar and bass than me. So we were hammering out like “How do we want to do something? Where do we want to start?” And I said “Well why don’t we, you know for what we’re going to do for my release why don’t I put together a drum track with rhythm guitar, because I really want to hear what you could do on bass over it, and send it over to you?” And right now is the tracks, it’s the drums, the rhythm guitar, the bass are done. And he just actually sent me the lead guitar today. And so I got to start mixing that and putting that part of it together. And that’s what I was saying too about it earlier, is it’s just the first time I hear it I’m like, well it throws me off. And I have to listen to it a second time to really appreciate how good everything is, because it’s so different than what I would do. And I’m so used to everything being Kyle, everything being As Particles Collide. And it’s really going to be a cool track. And it’s really been a ton of fun. I mean I really hope, I think we’ll probably do more in the future. Because we’re both having a really good time collaborating together, we’re both sort of doing the same thing in our own projects. We’re one man bands, he puts his drums together a little different. But we’re doing the same thing. And so yeah, to have a like-minded person where you’re shooting things back and like when I mixed the bass, I really liked it, I felt like I added something to it. And the production, when I put it together and use some presets and some filters that I’ve created for my bass to tie it into the song I’m like wow, when I first heard what he sent me, I really liked it. But then when I added my stuff to it on the production end, I feel like it’s really upped it a level on, you’re kind of nervous when you send that back over and “Does he feel the same way?” And you know, it’s been just everything back and forth we’re on the same page. So it’s kind of fun with, you know he lives on the other side of an ocean. So this whole project has brought me across the world. I’m creating music with a guy on another side of the world now, through technology. And through all these things it’s really brought about these experiences, I mean, to be collaborating with a band from across the world right now. That’s not something four years ago I would have told you I’d be doing, it’s really cool!
(mXf//Anna) I wanted to say that please treat it not as advice, but just idea. Maybe it could be awesome for you to look over the artists that are able right now to, for example, create whole albums on the Twitch. And they have instant, like hundreds or thousands of fans that can give them this critical thinking and another, you know, point of view. And especially like for one man bands, it’s so cool. Like maybe some ideas for production. Some helping with creativeness. Like it could be so awesome for you to get connected with fans. Right? So I was thinking that actually this could be awesome for you to maybe participate in this way. But it’s just an idea, so please, treat it as just an idea.
(Kyle) No no, that’s something I’ve never really thought of? And I think that would be, that kind of gives me some little ideas to maybe put out there for what I’m working on. Now. I always try to, I want everything to come up a notch every time. You know, I mean even if people are like “Well I like that last thing better”, because it may be something stylistically, I want it to sound tighter. With every release I’ve done I’ve went out and try to kind of get some new equipment, or experiment in a different area of production that I haven’t [before]. And after Crimson [the album The Crimson Black] came out I had been thinking the vocal mic I have is a condenser mic, it’s a really nice mic, you know at a decent cost. When I bought it, gosh around 2010, the first time I attempted something like this with kind of a drum machine thing that I just ended up not doing anything with. And when this came together I’m like, wow I got a microphone. So I kind of thought, man I wonder if I really spent the money and bought something that was really nice and everything I wanted in a microphone how much difference would that really make? So I you know I bit the bullet and I went and did it, and I’ve got one track finished with it. I did one track for this next thing with my old mic. And I have about three or four people I’ll run things by when we’re finished, friends and family, and everyone’s noticed! I got a couple of friends that have about the level of hearing I have which is pretty pathetic. And my one buddy, I mean we both have such bad hearing, he noticed right away. I mean he’s like “Wow, that’s so much cleaner and crisper.” So I really feel like the next thing I do already kind of has a leg up in it. I mean not that I want things to go that way, but I don’t have to get any more talented or do anything differently. All I had to do is spend some money and could make things sound better. So it’s kind of nice to be able to do nothing more than bring a new product home and be able to increase the professional or production side of your of your material.
(mXf//Colin) Awesome. And this next track, what’s the name of this next track coming up?
(Kyle) I’m gonna always do LPs. I just like that experience. So the next thing I do, it’ll be a full LP and it’ll probably come out early next year. So this track I’m collaborating on, that was kind of when I started talking to Rick about this collaboration we’re doing, that was kind of what I said I was like hey you know man I just put this album out, and I got a couple of tracks done, but my next thing it’s going to be an LP so there’s kind of a long runway on that before it comes out. I mean I’m still putting all the videos out for Crimson [the album The Crimson Black]. I got two more after this next one. So I’m still kind of in the like pushing that album phase. And so I said to him though, you know I would love to do something with you, like a release that you do. I would love, you know if you want to do something that features me so that we can show this to the world, show this collaboration a little sooner than my LP. So I’ll be doing a track with him. We’ve been working on mine first, so there’s no real timeline on that. But I imagine before my next LP drops I will be doing some kind of release with SparraLIMB where I’m featured on that.
(mXf//Colin) Got it, OK. And how do you spell that name? I’m not familiar, sorry.
(Kyle) Yeah, Rick, he’s from The Saboteurs, SparraLIMB, and Plains Of Silence are all projects he’s done. All really good. I mean I honestly listen to his material just to listen to it, that’s why I wanted to collaborate with him. I mean I’m not trying to sound snooty, but I’m not trying to go around and collaborate with people that I’m not diggin’ what they do. And The Saboteurs was one of the first things that kind of came across social media through Twitter where I was just like “Wow this is cool!” Like, I just like listening to this. And that was a full on band that he had that kind of I think sort of post COVID and through COVID sort of kind of fell apart, or they’re not they’re not doing their thing anymore, and he started SparraLIMB which is sort of just like As Particles Collide. He’s using a program, I actually talked to him about it, and it sounds really cool I just don’t know if I would want to go through the learning. I’m used to my Beta Monkey thing you know, I got my thing down with the drums. But he actually like does it with a MIDI, with keys, but the sounds are studio recorded drums. And he told me that he can actually dial down the intensity, or like as I was talking earlier kind of learning drums for the emotion and the effect in a song. I mean, you can hit a snare quiet, and you can hit a snare hard, and if you’re going to try to have something that’s like “Oh, oh like really bring it” if that snares all weak it’s not going to work. And vice versa, if you’re trying to do something that’s soft and it just sounds like it’s just some bring it home break-down in the middle of a song kind of part, that’s not going to work either. So he’s programming his drums, which is a lot more work I would have to say. And then doing the same thing I’m doing. And he sang on one of his tracks. But most of his tracks for SparraLIMB have been the same that me and him are doing, he’s brought in other artists and collaborated with for the vocals.
(mXf//Colin) OK, all right, cool. Yeah, I mean I’d like to hear that when it comes out, so definitely tweet it out!
(Kyle) Yeah! I will push that real hard when it comes out. I’m excited to be featured on something with him. It’s cool.
(mXf//Colin) Awesome, absolutely. Well, that’s great. And it’s great, like you were saying before it’s amazing how people, I mean you two guys were able to come together and find each other and get together and it’s really awesome!
(Kyle) Right? It was kind of funny. There’s another artists out there that I did, one other guy thought about potentially collaborating with. And when I reached out to Rick I got kind of the heads up, he had just done a song with him. And it’s kind of like, it’s funny; like when I reached out to Rick and he’s like “Yeah, I just did a song with him.” And I was like “Wow, that’s so cool.” I’m gonna get to hear a song done by the two guys I really enjoy listening to if I was going to choose someone to collaborate with, in the scope of someone I can collaborate with. are doing something together.
(mXf//Colin) Absolutely. Yeah, this is great stuff man, I’m really excited. We’re looking forward to hearing this come out! So yeah, that’ll be awesome. Well I really appreciate your time today. And hopefully, you know, we’ll stay in touch and we can do a follow up. Especially as these other things come out! Is there anything else you want to add in terms of your upcoming projects and stuff like that?
(mXf//Anna) I wanted to also say thank you so much. I don’t have any more questions. But I enjoyed the conversation so much. So thank you.
(Kyle) That was great guys, this was a blast. I really appreciate it, I thank both you as well. This was a ton of fun. And yeah, anytime in the future, or anything you want, feel free to reach out, we’ll definitely stay connected. I guess as far as things I have to plug, I mean, obviously we’ve talked about the The Crimson Black. If there is right now, the fourth music video is dropping, Friday and then I have two more to come out. So there’s been six music videos, I did one for “Kill the Comedian” as like a kind of pre-teaser for the album. And then after the album came out every two weeks, there’s been a new music video. So “A Simple Plan” drops tonight at midnight, so Friday. And that’s actually the My Favorite music video that I did just as far as how everything came together with the footage I had to use and how that synced up with the music. And then there’ll be two more, there’s going to be one two weeks from tomorrow for “Strap Me to the Sky”. And then two weeks from that on June 17 there’s going to be one for “The Crimson Black”. And that one’s kind of like a little bit of mini horror movie. It was a lot of fun to do as well. So I’m really, really digging those. So that’s all I really have coming up that has a date on it. So yeah, I mean, thanks for doing this. This was great!
(mXf//Colin) No, it’s our pleasure, man. Really great to meet you. Like I said, we’ve been a fan for a long time. Couple of years been into your music. And these videos like, this one that’s coming out tonight, are they on YouTube? Or what platform is coming out on?
(Kyle) Yeah, they’re my music videos that I do are just all on my YouTube channel. OK, so check those out.
(mXf//Colin) OK great, because I have your Instagram and your Twitter, and of course Spotify because I you mostly listen. I am sure that the link will be easy to find if I search As Particles Collide on YouTube it will come up easy.
(Kyle) Yeah, yeah, it should be I mean, that’s the name of my channel. You can, if you go to my Twitter in my profile there’s a link, not in my pinned tweet, but in the profile there’s a link to my YouTube as well.
(mXf//Colin) Oh, I see over here. OK, perfect! Sorry I missed that. All right, congrats on that, this is great stuff. And really, really pleasure to meet you, Kyle. Looking forward to all the stuff coming out and stay in touch!!
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