Interview with singer Azriel St. Michael
Interview with Azriel St. Michael singer of Audio Porn
Name: Azriel St. Michael
Birth date: November 18th. Im a Scorpio.
Place of birth: Norfolk Virginia, USA.
Favorite album of all time? Hmmm...that's a hard question. There are so many albums I love, to just pick one is very difficult. Anything, and I do mean anything, by Whitesnake. David Coverdale is an amazing artist and he always has had amazing people playing with him. Raise Your Fist And Yell by Alice Cooper; Appetite For Destruction, by GnR; Girls, Girls, Girls by Motley Crue. And anything that Slash has put out since GnR; he is such an incredible feel in his playing, and he always has great people in his band as well.
What is the first CD or LP you ever bought? Metal Health by Quiet Riot.
A guitar: My first guitar was a Yamaha acoustic that had been my dad's guitar, and I inherited it when I was 12. I grew up in an isolated Indian village in British Columbia, Canada. My parents were missonairies, and we were the only white people there pretty much, so the Indians used to get drunk and shoot at us quite frequently. That guitar had a bullet hole through the side of it from a 30-30, after a woman opened fire on us and we hid in a snow bank until she ran out of ammunition. One of those bullets came very close. That guitar had such great tone. I was playing it one day and set it down and it fell over and the neck broke. I literally cried. My first electric guitar was a 24 fret neck-through Goya. It was pretty cool. I traded it in on a Vandenburg signature guitar later on. Didn't get much for it though!
Favorite musician: I can't just name one. David Coverdale, for his feel and sheer vocal ability. Sebastian Bach....he's gotta have one of the best voices in rock n roll. Alice Cooper, for his lyrical brilliance; George Lynch and Slash, both of whom have just amazing feel. James Michael from Sixx A.M. ; that guy is very gifted.
Favorite band or group: Well obviously I love Audio Porn and Black Sun quite a bit! I have been blessed to work with really awesome people like Jeff Westlake, Tracy Grijalva, RC Ricci, John Cardilino, Brad Black...but you can pretty much pick any band I have mentioned thus far and those are it for me. There are just so many great bands out there. Like Kix..those guys have been around for ever and they are still putting out great kick ass rock n roll and really deserve so much more recognition than what they are getting. They have a new album out and everyone should definitely go out and get it. It's gonna be awesome!
As you describe yourself ? I'm kind of a strange person.Haha! I write music, fantasy fiction, dark poetry, and some erotic fantasy stuff. My writing is heavily influenced by authors such as Robert E. Howard, Stephen King, Anne Rice, Aliester Crowley and things like Penthouse Forum. I also have several books I am working on that are not fantasy based; research I have done in the areas of Sacred Geometry, ancient history and high magic. I have a great fascination with the ancient world, with archaic languages and magical scripts and symbols used in grimoires.
Azriel, what are your most recently completed projects and what are you currently working on?
The new Audio Porn album, Midnight Confessions, is set to be released in the beginning of September, so I am really excited about that. It is being distributed by Music Buy Mail in Europe and the UK. We have already begun pre-production on the third Audio Porn album, which we hope to release next summer. This one got delayed by about nine months, which sucks but there was nothing we could really do about it. The next one is going to follow it up pretty fast. I have a book coming out, my first full-blown novel, called Charge of the goddess. It's not about Wicca or Witchcraft per say; it's part one of a fantasy fiction series I have been working on for a while now.
Who were the bands or musicians who had the greatest influence on you?
I'm going to say David Coverdale, Sebastian Bach, Alice Cooper, George Lynch, Stephen Percy, Stephen Tyler, Gene Simmons, and Ozzy. There was also a Christian recording artist named Don Francisco that I really dug. He has a very great talent as a storyteller in his songs and was an incredible finger picker. Also another Christian artist, Ken Tamplin. He is truly an awesome singer.
When was Audio Porn formed?
2012. I was working on the black Sun album with Brad and he introduced me to Jeff Westlake from Hydrogyn, who was producing the album. We ended up co-writing for the Black Sun album and with Tracy Grijalva, formerly from Dio, and we just sort of clicked, so one thing led to another, and Audio Porn was born.
Let’s talk about the new album.... What are the differences with songwriting/recording on the new album as compared to your previous albums?
The previous album was a re-release of the album I did with my other band Jezebel's Kiss. That album was released in Canada but really nowhere else. I had a deal with Dynasty Records at the time but they just gave me the run-around. When Jeff and I started working together, we both felt it was a really good album that just didn't get a fair shake, and we wanted to make sure it would be available for our fans worldwide, which is the case now, as it is also available through Music Buy Mail, who have been really good to us. I wrote everything on the first album; the new one, Jeff and I have co-written the bulk of the material, which is really cool, because that is a new experience for me, and one that felt like such a natural progression. This album is a bit heavier, and we covered an Aerosmith song on it too, Lord Of The Thighs, which was a lot of fun and definitely in line with the whole Audio Porn theme. And we threw in a couple live tracks too. Personally, I love live albums, and I would like nothing better than to do a full-length live album, but I know most people like studio albums, so this has a bit of both for everyone.
Does any particular song on the CD have special meaning for you?
Every song I have written has some sort of special sentiment for me, as I am sure is the case with most songwriters. But there are a couple of songs that sort of stand out for me, the first because it was a bit strange in how it presented itself to me in my mind. I mean, it was written in less than five minutes flat. I was working on a different idea, having a few beers, and suddenly this song just took my mind by storm so -to speak. It's called I'll Be Your Man. It is very different than any other song I have written. The other one is called Heaven's Burning Down Tonight and it was a collaboration between Jeff and I that just kinda took its own direction. I think it is 7 minutes long, but just a really really cool song. Again, different that the other stuff too, but they all fit together very well.
Were you involved in the writing process for this album?
In the past I have been the primary writer, but this album is a collaboration between myself and Jeff Westlake. There are a couple of tracks that I wrote separately, but the bulk of it was the two of us working together.
What is next for "Audio Porn", any tours on the way?
Midnight confessions comes out in September, with some really cool artwork on the covers by Bruce Colero, who is an incredibly gifted artist; the video for our first single "Freak Like You" is out on Vemo now, and we will have some more videos coming out. Like I said earlier, we have begun pre-production on the third Audio Porn record too. And we are starting to book some tour dates. Right now those dates are a bit scattered and we are trying to fill in the gaps in between sort of, but if we do an extensive tour it will be as support for a bigger act.
To end the interview, a phrase you want to leave ....
I just want to say thank-you for taking the time to interview me; I really appreciate it and by the way, I believe this is the first time I have done an interview in Argentina so that is really cool!
I hope everyone will check out the new album when it come out too. If you want to find out more about Audio Porn you can check out www.audiopornmusic.com or www.azrielstmichael.com or find us on facebook, reverbnation, ect. Im on Twitter, Instagram, I'm pretty much omnipresent these days! hahahah! Also I would just like to say, whatever your favorite artists are, keep up with them, buy their songs, their albums. Support them. Because in the end, we do it for you. It takes a lot of work and effort and money and everything else to get our music recorded and out so that people can hear it and appreciate it, and its such a mutually rewarding experience. And going to the shows.... here is nothing like it both as a fan and as a musician. I truly appreciate everyone who has bought our albums, acme out to the shows, and supported us in whatever way they have. It's never something taken for granted. If there was no one listening, there would be no point to any of it.