The destruction of perfection: An interview with Daniel Graves

By Celeste Carrigan

Aesthetic Perfection have had a busy year; from supporting Combichrist, to the eagerly anticipated new album, All Beauty Destroyed, and their first headlining tour.

Daniel Graves took time out from sound check to reveal to Culture Bomb’s Celeste Carrigan what All Beauty Destroyed represents; what fans can expect from the current UK headliner tour and what we can look forward to in 2012.

Celeste Carrigan: All Beauty Destroyed has not that long been released, what do you feel the album represents?

Daniel Graves: Ahh It’s kinda hard to sum up. I mean I do my best not to give like in depth answers really. Cause I think it’s really important for the listener to kinda put their own interpretation into the music. Because after im done writing it, it’s like my   is over and It kinda belongs to the world now. And do you know what the songs mean for me isn’t necessarily what it means to other people. You know I’ll give a general vague answer and say its kinda about the way I view myself and the way I view beauty and how it applies to me and how it applies to the world I guess.

CC: What kind of things do you draw inspiration from when writing new material?

DG: I think for the most part it’s my life and my experiences and all that kinda stuff. I’m really into literature, and I like of course other artists, music, paintings and all that kinda stuff so. I think art in general is a big inspiration for me

CC: The album has received mixed response, you yourself has noted some hate, what is your view on this?

DG: I kinda love it. I kinda revel in it because it is so much better to get some love and hate opposed to some indifference. Cause at least you made people feel something. So I think a lot of the hate is coming from people who maybe expected A Violent Emotion 2, and if anybody knows anything about me or looked at my first album it was vastly different from A Violent Emotion. So it’s like what are you expecting from me. Maybe those people whose initial response is that they don’t like it, maybe it will grow on them. The albums that I find I love the most are the ones that grew on me, but either way if they go on hating it till the end of time that’s totally cool, cause at least they felt something. Which is so much better.

CC: Some have said the new album has similarities to Innerpartysystem, in particular Little Death, have they been an influence on the new album?

DG: Oh really, that’s funny I’m actually a really really big Innerpartysystem fan but I never stopped to think about that and I haven’t heard anyone make that comparison. I guess I’m kinda honoured by that because I do love Innerpartysystem.

CC: What are your musical influences – is there anything on your IPod we wouldn’t expect?

DG: Oh let’s see here…. What wouldn’t you expect? I don’t know I really do have a pretty eclectic taste in music. [Graves goes through his IPhone] AC/DC, Ashbury Heights, Audio Bullys, The Birthday Massacre, Breathe Carolina, Bush, The Cure, David Bowie. I’d say actually my favourite artists right now are Marina and the Diamonds, Innerpartysystem and Panic at the Disco.

CC: You were here in Glasgow in July supporting your friends Combichrist, whats the difference in headlining to being a support act?

DG: It’s vastly different, there is so much more pressure. Cause it’s like your show, you’ve got to go out there and bring the goods every night. It’s really awesome cause you know, it’s always awesome to open for bigger bands, cause there’s a crowd, you get a tour bus and you get all this kind cool shit. But it’s not really your show, you go out and play your 20 minute set and then it’s over, and you’re just trying to like, win some people over or something like that. But this time around it’s like no tour bus, stuck in a tiny little van with people and you get to give your show. You’re up on stage for an hour every night, not necessarily to win people over but to give a dynamic set that is your own. I like the pressure and I like the fact that’s it all on me.

CC: Do you feel the band is getting more recognised with this headline tour?

DG: I think it’s really really cool that we have been able to tour the UK as many times as we have. We have done it twice with Combichrist, and we did it once with Grendel as well and the reception here from people has just gotten more and more positive. I really really love coming back here, I think we are really humbled and honoured that the UK likes us so much; to give us the chance to do our own headlining tour.

CC: What are you bringing to the fans at these shows?

DG: The best show we can. Our show. A longer show, a more dynamic, fun Aesthetic Perfection Show.

CC: Do you think the UK audience differs from the rest of the world?

DG: I think where ever you go, you will find that people love music equally. It’s kinda a universal thing. You know people go crazy in London, people go crazy in LA, people go crazy in Kansas, and people go crazy in some village in Austria. It’s something that is universal and if the music speaks to them, then everyone has a similar response.

CC: Like most artists today, it’s a long journey to getting their music out there, Internet and music is still debated by many music insiders, what is your stance on it?

DG: The internet is probably one of the best tools that an artist has to get themselves out there. I mean I’m 28, like when I was a teenager and was trying to get my music out there, this was like when Napster, Audio Galaxy and Mp3.com and all this stuff was all gaining momentum. That’s the way I promoted myself from the very beginning. So I don’t know the old model of the music business, I don’t really hold onto that, I don’t care about it. I think it is important for artists to use everything they have at their disposal, to get themselves noticed and known. I embrace all of that.

CC: Back in 2009 we heard your remix of Lady GaGa’s Love Game, is there any other songs or artists you would like to make your mark on, since they are just for fun?

DG: I would like to do Dirt Off Your Shoulder by Jay-Z!

CC: Well obviously you are promoting the new album and on tour at the moment, but what is next for Aesthetic Perfection come 2012?

DG: Surprisingly I’m more than half way done with a records-worth of material. I don’t know how long it’s going to take to come out, but this is like the fastest I’ve ever written anything. So I’m actually really giddy and excited, to like more than I have been before about stuff. Because I’m like OMG I wrote this so fast, I love all of it, I’m so excited. And I just want to get it out. So maybe another record in 2012, who knows.

For more information on Aesthetic Perfection check out their website, on Vampire Freaks or Facebook .

Twitter: daniel_graves

Read a review of Aesthetic Perfection on their headlining tour.

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One thought on “The destruction of perfection: An interview with Daniel Graves

  1. Pingback: Review: Aesthetic Perfection on the All Beauty Destroyed tour | CULTURE BOMB

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