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Art & Life with SPIKE the Percussionist

Today we’d like to introduce you to SPIKE the Percussionist.

SPIKE, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I am a classically trained percussionist, and noizician who studied under a Master of Percussion then moved to Houston from Corpus Christi in August of ’92 with my band at the time. This resulted in me working at the world’s biggest drum shop (Drum, Keyboard, and Guitar Shop) and getting into the HCC Audio Engineering program, where I acquired my degree.

During my time here in Houston, I have worked with many great musicians and other industry people. I had the most popular radio show on KTRU called The Rat Bastard Show (which was banned after a few years), performed many sold out concerts at Number’s Night Club, and even helped get a very important piano player named Johnnie Johnson inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnnie_Johnson_(musician) ]

But…everything I do all revolves around noiz.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
Everything I primarily do revolves around noiz. My use of the term (and its abstract spelling) is based on the fact that everything makes noiz. Living and inanimate all make noiz. We live in a giant, all-encompassing soundscape. Even in an anechoic chamber, you still have the noiz that is generated by your act of living. I tend to take and shape all the sounds around me into what would be a cohesive structure. In some cases, it’s a sound mobile of things, and in others, it’s the rhythmic motifs that develop from working with other humans or machines.

I seem to require a sort of multifaceted fulfillment from all of my projects. That’s why all of my bands/projects are so extremely diverse. Astrogenic Hallucinauting is my black ambient noiz and drone thing. Fiddle Witch and the Demons of Doom is a Battle Metal complexity made up of drums, bass, and Viola. Unified Space is a Kraut Rock influenced band, and another band I have recently had the honor of attacking a drum set with is Doomstress which is a Stoner Metal kind of outfit.

In the past, I have fronted (and banned from our home town), my Industrial band called SELK. I helped create and coin the genre “Cybergrind” with my band L.M.P.K. I even delved far into the abstract of improvisational music with my drum and flute duo called DOGGEBI. More recently I had the great opportunity to work with the music and dance troupe Transitory Sound and Movement Collective at the Contemporary Arts Museum.

One of the biggest projects I am associated with is CoRE – Constructs of Ritual Evolution. CoRE is the world’s first theatrical flesh suspension troupe. In case people don’t get the flesh suspension part…its the act of temporarily piercing hooks into the skin and suspending the body from said hooks. I am the first and original Music Director for the troupe. Funny thing is…I have an aversion to needles. Heh!

One of the biggest projects I am associated with is CoRE – Constructs of  Ritual Evolution. CoRE is the world’s first theatrical flesh suspension  troupe created by Steve Joyner. In case people don’t get the flesh  suspension part…its the act of temporarily piercing hooks into the skin  and suspending the body from said hooks. I am the first and original  Music Director for the troupe. Funny thing is…I have an aversion to  needles. Heh! CoRE expanded from Houston to include chapters in L.A. and  Oakland with my music department growing to include current members of  Skinny Puppy, Ohgr and the guitar player from Jane’s Addiction, Dave  Navarro.

Why do I do what I do…
Its an overwhelming obsession with noiz and performing these constructs of noiz for a willing audience!

The inspiration I tend to gather things from is usually with regard to the more macabre side of life. The dark places that stories and film tend to take us. The haunted house or that cemetery at night. The dimly lit street with shadows lost in a fog. The hacked transmission that was tapped into.

What I hope people gather from experiencing my noiz is some sort of higher indescribable feeling. That sort of thing that you want to experience over and over again.

Artists rarely, if ever pursue art for the money. Nonetheless, we all have bills and responsibilities, and many aspiring artists are discouraged from pursuing art due to financial reasons. Any advice or thoughts you’d like to share with prospective artists?
Always focus on making good interpersonal relationships with the people in your craft. These connections usually lead to actual paid work in your chosen medium. Networking is the key, and being the type of person that others want to continue working with goes a long way in an industry with no rules.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
Some of the primary clubs I perform at are:
-Dan Electro’s Guitar Bar
-Number’s Night Club
-Rudyard’s British Pub

I host a bi-monthly noiz concert series called “An Exchange of Noiz” at Sound Exchange Record Store.

I perform all over Houston, but you can keep up with all of my noiz on social media and my website!

You can buy my music from my website and various online noiz dealers like Apple:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/astrogenic-hallucinauting/506219108

https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/fiddle-witch-and-the-demons-of-doom/985348476

Web: http://manipulate.net/

Fiddle Witch and the Demons of Doom: http://fiddlewitch.com/

Astrogenic Hallucinauting: https://www.facebook.com/Astrogenic.Hallucinauting/

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Fluffy Shot Me
George Hixson
Anthony Rathbun
SMB Design

Getting in touch: VoyageHouston is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition, please let us know here.

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