XS ROCK: Tell me about the latest band news? Any new projects coming out, live shows or announcements?
Mike: We had a EP, “Misanthropic Sedition”, come out 12/15/2018 and our LP, “Thanatophobia”, will be out 2/1/2019.
XS ROCK: How long has the band been together?
Mike: 9 years total. 8 years as myself and 1 year with Anthony.
XS ROCK: What was your main motivation for starting or being in a band?
Mike: For it to be an outlet for a lot of negative energy in me.
XS ROCK: What is your music background?
Mike: None, self-taught.
XS ROCK: What image do you think your music conveys?
Mike: Death and Misanthropy
XS ROCK: What are your immediate music career goals? (Next 1 to 3 years.)
Mike: Plays some shows and write more material when inspiration strikes.
XS ROCK: What are your long-term career goals?
Mike: I don’t expect to make a career out of music. It would be a dream to tour with a band that I respect but I am realistic that that would be pretty unlikely.
XS ROCK: Which do you prefer? Writing new songs and recording or playing for a live audience?
Mike: Writing new songs and recording. I am creating something that will outlive me potentially and it is very satisfying to see a song come together. Playing live is an experience of finite duration.
XS ROCK: What are your songs about? (What specific themes do they cover?)
Mike: The theme of the first album focused on the fault in humanity’s desire for power that leads to short term destruction and the demise of great empires, yet results in paradoxical long-term evolution. The second album, “Scales of Existence,” is a journey through a nihilistic existence, the vices used to cope, and the resulting aftermath. The latest album, “Thanatophobia,” deals with the reliance on religion as a mechanism to satisfy the human ego’s desire to attribute meaning to one’s existence and pacify the feelings of discomfort in the unknown – in life and in death.
XS ROCK: Do you have any outrageous tour stories from the road? If so, please fill us in.
Mike: Not yet! Maybe one day.
XS ROCK: What’s the strangest request that you’ve ever received from one of your fans?
Mike: Signing one of my CDs with my own blood. I had no issue obliging as I have no issue with lancets, needles, and blood being a type 1 diabetic. Dealing with blood is my daily ritual.
XS ROCK: Were your parents supportive of your aspirations to play in a rock band?
Mike: They were indifferent though would credit my mom as the parent that enabled my more creative side.
XS ROCK: What are your favorite tracks to play live?
Mike: Quite a few: When it’s Too Late, Slaves to the Illusion, Shadow of Mortality, For the Glory, Way of All Flesh, Becoming Fire, Oblivion of Time, and Men Behind the Sun
XS ROCK: Which band or artist inspired you to perform? Why?
Mike: I would say the following metal bands have had the most influence on me: Danzig/Samhain, Paradise Lost, early-Megadeth, Slayer, Deicide, Samael, Satyricon, Burzum, and Inquisition
They are able to connect with rebellion and hatred through music which helps me cope with day to day life.
XS ROCK: If you could design a dream tour for your band, who would be on the bill?
Mike: I would be honored to open for any of the bands in the previous question.
XS ROCK: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment so far?
Mike: My first album given a lot of failed musical attempts with other people.
XS ROCK: If you weren’t performing in a band what kind of career do you think you would have?
Mike: Music is not my career. There is no way someone can sustain an existence in a capitalist country on what one makes at my level in music. I am greatly appreciative though to those who buy merch, CDs, or a download but that is the exception these days.
I have a career in IT security. It is mundane and depressing by comparison to music but it pays the bills and allows me to fund my music.
XS ROCK: What type of equipment do you use for live shows?
Mike: 6505, ESP/LTD guitar, whatever mic is available.
XS ROCK: What do you think of the current music scene?
Mike: Media moves too quickly for much of a scene to ever form. I can’t say I keep a heavy pulse on the local scene but do feel spoiled nowadays with the number of great bands that come through the Baltimore/DC area compared to the past. In addition, Baltimore has some killer metal festivals like Maryland Deathfest and Shadow Woods Metal Fest.
XS ROCK: For anyone that doesn’t know you, what would they be surprised to know about you?
Mike: I’d figure most people who listen to Unendlich to already be keen on the genre I play and what kind of minds it attracts. I am who I am so unsure nor care what surprises people.
XS ROCK: If someone had never heard you before, how would you describe your sound?
Mike: Chaotic aggression and brutality of Black Metal balanced by melody injected throughout.
Or listen to a track here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_83AptnTAA
XS ROCK: Is there anything that you’d like to promote or say to your fans out there?
Mike: Thank you to anyone that listens to my music.
XS ROCK: Thanks again for taking the time to talk with us at XS Rock!