Beyond the record presents

Music news, album reviews & interviews

an interview with

plike

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Beyond the Record: Welcome! Tell us a little bit about how you originally
cultivated a love for music and how you got into the electronic scene.


Plike: Thank you so much for having me! It’s really interesting to look back and see just
how much of an impact music has had on my life. My family has always been very
musical. My dad plays guitar, double bass, mandolin, just about anything with strings.
My granny was a mean fiddle player! But I also remember being so emotionally moved
by music growing up, especially music in films. Watching Labyrinth was my first
exposure to David Bowie, and the Disney 3D film Captain EO was the first time I ever
heard Michael Jackson. Seeing those films and others like them allowed me to begin to
see music as a way to tell a story. Then as I got a little older and the grunge scene came
along, I started seeing those bands as a voice for my generation, telling our story. I guess
that’s how mixtapes really became a thing. You want to tell someone how you feel, and
what better way is there than to do it through music? I started piano lessons when I was
five, but it wasn’t until I was twenty-two that I got into playing bass, and I really started
to get serious about music after that. I’m very lucky that I wound up in an electronic /
metal hybrid project, because it gave me the opportunity to start exploring electronic
music. I fell in love with programming drums so hard that I wound up taking a year of
acoustic drum lessons to better understand percussion and timing. I’d been a huge fan of
electronic music for years, but musically this was a whole new world to me.


BtR: You have been making music for a considerable amount of time. With as much
success and as many fans as you have, tell us some of the secrets you could
spare to someone who may be looking to just form a project. What's the secret to
making music in the long term?


Plike: That’s very kind of you to say! I am so very grateful to all of the wonderful people
who support my music, I have never met so many beautiful hearts! I believe that there are
many different recipes for success when it comes to music, and it can be tough to find the
one that works best for you. But I think that the most important thing is to be as true to
yourself as possible. Tell the stories you want to tell. Experiment, and instead of worrying
over what other people will think of your work, ask yourself, what do I think of my
work? At the end of the day, if you did your absolute best and you love what you wrote, I
can almost guarantee that someone else out there will love it too. It breaks my heart when
I hear artists discussing what type of project they should start based on what’s performing
well at that moment in time. It makes me sad because it feels like stripping all of the joy
out of creating and turning art into a product. There’s that old saying, “there’s nothing
new under the sun”, but there’s a way to make it yours.

BtR: As I just mentioned, you have a lot of success. Exactly what successes have you
experienced? Go in great detail! I've heard there have been quite a few.


Plike: Well now I’m blushing! :) I really appreciate that, and I am unbelievably thankful
for all of the opportunities that I’ve been given! I’m very proud that several of my songs
have been chosen for independent feature films and shorts - one film in particular, I Am
Still Here, has garnered a lot of nominations and awards, including Best Feature at the
Nice Film Festival. I’m absolutely thrilled that my music is playing on Pandora radio,
I’ve found so many amazing artists through Pandora over the years that it feels a bit like a
dream to be a part of their talent roster. And I am so excited to be doing audio design for
video games! Back in early 2016, the creative director of Oak Moon Games reached out
to me to see if I would be interested in composing a few themes for their upcoming
release “Momo Ichigo”. Today I’m the lead audio designer for Oak Moon Games, and it
is such a joy to be able to work with such a talented group of designers and artists! I’ve
been a gaming addict since I was 8 or 9, so this really is a dream come true.

BtR: Aside from the glamour, there are some challenges that you may have been
faced with at certain times. In your personal life, but also in your career,
take us through some low moments in your life.


Plike: I’ve battled depression and anxiety most of my life, and that tends to color
everything a bit gray. For years I self-medicated with alcohol, but then in 2010 I lost both
of my grandparents and I just stopped functioning. That’s when I was diagnosed with
complex-PTSD and everything started to make sense. I’ve made tons of progress with
therapy and medication, and I’m so thankful for that. I’m so thankful to be alive. When I
first started writing music, I’d no idea how therapeutic it would be. It saved me, to be able
to express all of these overwhelming emotions through music.


BtR: After hearing some of the latest tracks, I find it difficult to pinpoint
exactly what genre you are a part of. How would you classify your sound?


Plike: I’m sitting here chuckling, because I feel the exact same way! I’ve heard it
classified as shoegaze, dreampop, triphop, witch house and dubstep, and I think it does
embody parts of each of those genres. I should really put on my thinking cap and come
up with a new sub-genre!


BtR: Do you feel the need to cater to the masses in anyway or do you prefer to
be genuine in your approach?

Plike: I’m always genuine in my approach, but it’s very important to me to connect with
others through music. There have been so many songs, countless songs that have been
there for me when I was going through hard times, just like there have been so many
songs that have been there during good times. I hope that my music can be a comfort to
those who are struggling, to let them know that they are not alone.


BtR: What DAW do you use? What is the recording process like?


Plike: Reason has been my DAW of choice for over ten years. I’ve used Ableton, Pro
Tools and Nuendo, but I just love the way Reason is built. I also use Logic Pro when
composing for films. My recording process generally begins on paper! I love writing
conceptual tracks and albums, so I usually write out a basic story for a track and then start
composing. I always start off with a bassline so that I can build on the core melody. I
used to be in the terrible habit of writing an entire song without even touching the EQ and
then starting on the mix, but I’ve found that mixing as I go makes everything flow much
more smoothly. I love using really deep bass tones and sound design, and if you don’t
mix everything properly when you incorporate those sounds into a track, you can end up
with ten tons of mud! Last year I started using Ozone for mastering, and it’s just an
amazing program. I feel like I learn a little more every time I sit down to master a track.


BtR: Do you feel lonely being one of the few female artists within your genre?


Plike: I have to admit, I do a little happy dance every time I come across another female
producer making electronic music! I’m really thankful, I’ve become friends with several
incredibly talented female producers, Lucia Fenix and Sarah Gatter and Jessica Grant to
name a few. But I am looking forward to the day when women really become a driving
force in electronic music!


BtR: Are you the vocalist for this project?


Plike: I am not, and thank you so much for this question! People often think when they
first hear my music that I am the vocalist, which makes perfect sense - if I heard a male
producer’s electronic music and he’d used male vocal samples, I would definitely assume
he was the vocalist! I use vocal libraries from several vocalists, which is a wonderful
asset but requires many, many hours of editing.


BtR: Who inspires you to make music? Who/what is your inspiration for your
latest record?

Plike: This last EP was very heavily inspired by the events that are currently happening
in the United States, all the fear and propaganda. So many of us are just in a constant
state of anxiety over it. It’s like a cycle of anger and fear. I’m always very inspired to tell
stories with music, but I try to do it in a subtle way so that the listener can make it their
own.


BtR: What is the next big thing for you musically?


Plike: I love collaborating with other artists, and I’d actually love to start a side project
sometime this year. At the moment I’m very focused on composing music for “Momo
Ichigo”, and I just started production on Plike’s next album.


BtR: Where can we find your music?


Plike: My albums are available from many different sellers including iTunes and Google
Play. You can also stream them on Spotify and Soundcloud, or create a Plike station on
Pandora radio.
Bandcamp: https://plike.bandcamp.com
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/plike-1