By Michael Dinger, Rock At Night NYC
Rock At Night had the pleasure of interviewing Kyle Nicolaides of Beware Of Darkness about his new single “Bloodlines” and his life since his last studio album Are You Real. You might remember Beware of Darkness from their hit “Howl”? Check out the interview below:
With the exception of writing and recording your new songs, what was the most important event that occurred in your life since your last studio album (“Are You Real?”) was released in 2016?
I attended an ayahuasca ceremony. It was the best decision I ever made, and the most life changing experience I ever had. It rekindled my relationship with the divine, helped me get to the root of my depression, curbed a lot of my addictive tendencies, and changed the way I live and see life.
Why should the listener beware of darkness? Is your band name in reference to anything specific?
It comes from a George Harrison song off the album All Things Must Pass. I’d say do the opposite, lean into and step into darkness. Learn how to be still with it, learn that real freedom, fearlessness, and trust in the divine universe and God comes from a healthy relationship with the dark. Read Waking up to The Dark by Clark Strand for a revelation. It will change your life. The origin of the word beware is “be aware,” so the name is more of a wake up call than a warning.
Your new song “Bloodlines,” what is its meaning? It has been said that the song “illustrates how you fought uncertainty and disillusionment.” Would you mind telling the reader more about that?
It means whatever you want it to mean! That’s the magic of songs. The meaning of it is whatever you attribute to it. I wouldn’t want to get in the way of that.
What message about depression and anxiety would like to share with your fans?
I tell them to DM me or reach out. I post a lot about it what I go through on my personal social media page and sometimes its just good to know you’re not alone and talk to someone. I can’t solve your problems but I’ve been around a minute to have some resources to help or liste
Were you influenced or inspired by another artist during the preparation of the new song(s)?
All I’ve been listening to the Beatles and Led Zeppelin the past couple months. The demos and outtakes the Beatles released on Spotify I adore, because it gives you insight into how they worked. That’s had the most influence on me recently.
How would you describe the sound of your new song(s)?
I don’t. I just write them. It’s not my role to label, describe, or judge them.
What was your songwriting process for the new song(s)? Is this your typical methodology?
For the new songs, it’s a timely question because I’m still figuring it out. I just wrote some new ones simply by walking down State Street in Santa Barbara and singing the melodies as they came and arranged on the fly. I loved doing that and it brought me so much joy. I started writing with just acoustic guitar. I’m open to a lot of ways right now to just see whatever works.
I wrote Are You Real? with drum machines and guitars and part of me wants to go back to that and give it a shot. I honestly have no memory at all of writing “Bloodlines.”
You had some very talented musicians perform on “Bloodlines” such as guitarist Jeff Schroeder (Smashing Pumpkins), bassist Mark Stoermer (The Killers) and drummer Jon Safley (CRX, Bleached). What did they each bring to the table?
Everything. They made the session magic, taught me how to be selfless and kind in the studio. They showed me how to be and hold yourself as a person no matter what amount of success you’ve had. It was so inspiring.
What instruments do you play and which is your favorite?
I play guitar, piano, bass, and synths. I’m learning how to play drums. My favorite is piano. I’m able to get into an almost meditative flow with it that guitar hasn’t allowed me yet.
Your music has been classified as alternative rock. What does this genre mean to you?
I don’t focus on genres. The only thing I know is whether a song makes me feel something or not, and that realm exists completely outside the label of genres.
When can we expect to hear more songs from you? Will there be an album coming? Are there any “juicy tidbits” that you can share?
I’m writing and demoing for my forthcoming EP right now. I’ve recorded a Zeppelin cover that will be out at some point.
Will there be a tour? If so, can you share details as to where fans can expect to see you perform live and what other bands may be joining you?
I don’t have details right now, but if a tour makes sense we’ll be there in a heartbeat.
What is the number one thing that you want your fans to know about you?
I genuinely care about them as people. Their support, messages, and comments make my life worth it, give it purpose and meaning, and keep me going.
And just for fun . . .
If you were not a musician, what would you be doing right now?
I’d go back to school, major in something like history, psychology or literature because I love learning. Whatever I did, I’d definitely write. Maybe I’d be a therapist, open a flower and tea store? Or maybe go all in on yoga and teach, attend retreats and trainings. I could also just fuck off western civilization and go become a monk.
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