Wednesday, 17th October 2018. 4:07:08pm ET
Interviews Alternative, Indie Rock Interview- Miserylab


Band: miserylab
Interviewer: Julie Johnson
Date: 3-8-06

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Since disbanding Rosetta Stone - Porl has built on his digital audio and pro-tools production abilities ... working on projects as diverse as producing for top-ten act kelly lorrenna [n-trance, flip'n'fill] and remixing for the renowned producer richard hewson [at the risk of trivialising his achievements - string arranger to the beatles] He has also continued to play and write guitar for the critically acclaimed band mulu including a few live performances guesting alongside clint boon of the inspiral carpets.

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GC: Hey Porl, how is the New Year treating you as we have now ended January 2006?

2006 ... for me - it's a year of considerable change I suppose ... I mean six months ago I wasn't even contemplating any sort of recording project ... I was still following the path of production and remixing ... and - I was also recently diagnosed as suffering from a form of social anxiety and depression (I'm officially a tortured artist!) ... which figures as much of my outlook on life over the past decade has revolved around hating other people ... so - yeah - 2006 has so far been an unpredictable eye-opener ... ! [smiles]

GC: Can you tell us more about who you are as a musician?

I'm not really sure anymore ... I suppose ... I'm a programmer, guitarist and vocalist with a good sense of my own limitations and how to exploit them ... I'm not a performer - I have no urge to gig - to posture to crowds of people - or to soundcheck in stale rooms with sticky floors ... as a musician - I would define myself as somebody who experiments with sound, melody, and technology.

GC: Besides being a musician, what would one expect if they were to meet you and get to know you after a few weeks?

I can't really define what people would expect ... certainly - I'm a very different person to the frontman of rosetta stone ... I don't do drugs - I no longer chain-smoke marlboro and I don't do meat or dairy. I would probably come as something of a disapointment ... I think most people would find me to be quite awkward and shy ... I'm very much a home person ... I follow world events ... politically and environmentally I think the world is in pretty dangerous state ... you'd invariably find me venting my anger at images of george bush on a news channel ... america please do the rest of the world a favour and dump that prick !

GC: What have you learned about the whole music scene throughout your musical career and how does prepare you for what is ahead for miserylab?

Do as much as I can myself and steer clear of the industry at every opportunity ... avoid 'the scene' politics and social networks with respect to other bands and their inevitable gossip.

GC: What are you like when you are in studio or writing songs, especially now with miserylab?

I tend to work off-and-on during a day ... maybe work on an idea or production aspect - take it to a certain point - then go and do something else for a little while maybe comeback in an hour or so - hopefully with a fresh objective view on what I'd been working on ... I used to work very differently - especially when I used amphetamine ... I could work perpetually for days ... scared to even stop to make tea - incase I somehow left the zone ! I'm still very anal about my production - but I'm not quite so obsessive.

GC: Can you give us some more details about the two news songs that can be heard on, and are these songs a good indication for the rest of the album?

Those tracks were both written along with a number of others back in 2000 ... I've just started revising them production wise - melody tweeks - re-recording the vocals and making lyrical alterations ... I'd like to say that 'raze it to the ground' is an indicator of the rest of the album ... I'm kind of hoping I haven't peaked too early with that track ... it's melodically superior to the rest of my material - I suppose it's a good benchmark for me to aspire to improve upon though ...

GC: How do you go about the song writing process now with miserylab?

Strictly speaking I haven't written anything from scratch for five years ... so that remains to be seen ... but I'd say it's pretty standard stuff ... me and a guitar and a mac ... create a beat ... form some chords some kind of mono riff / hook ... I'm keen for the songs to be less ambiguous this time around ... I want it lyrically simplistic but effective - nothing overly grand ... ordinary but with meaning ... the identity of miserylab is very important ... it has to evoke something other than 'non-descript dark fantasy' - which I notice a lot of other bands tend to do.

GC: What do you hope to accomplish with miserylab that you haven't been able to accomplish before?

In many ways the internet has now delivered it's promise of giving us the freedom to reach our potential audience without the need for record labels ... this notion is something that has been theoretical and discussed for the last ten years ... but I know from experience that it's only very recently that all the mechanics have been in place for a significant number of consumers to be able to buy and access music easily ... I'm not ruling out the possibility of signing to a record label ... but if the opportunity to sell direct is the more lucrative option I think that finally I may be able to accomplish a financial return ... ? ... that'd be a first ! [smiles]

GC: How do you feel the listening audience will view your work with miserylab?

Well I kind of already know ... although I've been away from the internet for five years ... within days of getting back online I stumbled across myspace and although I'm pretty much a newbie ... it's become my new obssession ... the messages and comments I'm receiving are basically driving me at the moment ... I pretty much know what my potential audience think of miserylab already without doing a gig or releasing a CD and I get an instant reaction to each song as I finish them ... I can genuinely say that I never received such consistantly positive responses to anything I did with rosetta stone ...

GC: What point are you at with recording miserylab songs?

There are now three tracks finished ... and three other tracks that need revising ... and a selection of other tracks that I may have to re-write from scratch ... or I may just have a go at writing a few completely new songs ... I'm looking to release an EP ... maybe six tracks ... ? ... unless I get a good offer that insists on the completion of a full album .

GC: What are some current things around you right now that motivate you to do what you do with miserylab?

My son and girlfriend ... I feel a responsibilty that I've never felt before since having my son kurtis ... there's a sense of relief on my part as I have noted in the past that sometimes when musicians have kids it takes away there edge - cynicism goes out the window and the world suddenly becomes this wonderful place ...

I'm kind of condensing this for simplicity - but - for me it's kind of made me angrier - as now the world has got to last for at least another generation in order for my son to have his crack at life and I'm not sure the world can survive for another generation - up until my sons birth - the world could have ended tomorrow for all I cared ... but now - when I see governments ignoring scientific advice on global warming - distracting us with terrorism and the politics of fear - whilst multi-national corporations and political parties entwine indistinguishably amidst capitalisms economic reliance on oil ... I wanna blow something up on behalf of my son ... I've probably just commited a thought crime by saying that ... genuinely an arrestable offence here in the UK

GC: How is miserylab different from anything you have ever done?

It's not a goth band - and there are no goths in it ...

GC: Is there a different vocal approach that you are trying from what you have done in the past?

Interestingly again from the feedback I've received over myspace ... I've now realised how significant the sound of my voice is to people who have enjoyed rosetta stone ... now that may sound funny and obvious to say ... but I truly never considered myself as a good vocalist ... honestly if I was in a room with you and I sang along to a song on the tv ... you'd laugh at how ordinary and imperfect my voice is ... ? ... all I can put it down to is that there must be something about the timbre of my voice that some people enjoy ?? ... so I've taken this on board and I will make a concious effort when recording and mixing miserylab material to ensure that the vocals lean towards a more traditional and prominent mix - something I haven't done since 'an eye for the main chance'.

GC: When do you feel everything will be complete?

Couldn't say for certain ... for my own piece of mind I need to write at least one song from scratch that is better than all the material presently set aside and also it kind of depends on whether I'm producing an album or an EP ... realistically I've got to be looking towards the end of august 2006 ?

GC: How do you plan to put miserylab on the map over the next year etc?

I'm hoping word of mouth will do that for me ... I've had a lot of interest so far ... and miserylab as a writing project has only actually existed for 3 months at the most ... so ... it's gonna be difficult I mean I've no intention of gigging as I've already pointed out ... to be honest I kind of entered into this recording project half-heartedly ... I hadn't anticipated the possibilty of this kind of response ... I'm now determined to do what I can to make this work on some level ... but I will continue to work as a remixer.

GC: Do you feel good about what you are doing now and have you put the past behind you?

I feel in control and I'm not allowing myself to be caught up in the kinds of things that distracted me in the past ... I had to get away from the goth scene for the sake of my own sanity ... many people have said that I was instrumental (at least in the uk) of driving the scene forward - regardless of whether you liked rosetta or not ... I was determined that goth could have a dignified identity ... but I began to feel suffocated by a scene obsessed with vampires amongst other things ... thankfully the scene seems to have moved on again ... but it's still something I intend to steer clear of ... but I understand that musically - I'm pretty sure I will still be described as goth in some form or another ...

GC: Anything else you would like to add?

Get yourself a myspace profile and come and say hello and add me as a friend!


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