Having recently released the excellent ‘Zero Future’ via Armalyte Industries, Cease2xist will certainly be one of those acts that are going to make the Brutalism 2017-London event, at O2 Academy Islington, in London a must-see! Their mindblowing music and their toxic lyrics, combined with their hyper energetic live appearance will turn that April 30 night an unforgettable one! In the meantime…Dayve Yates.
How did the Cease2xist project come to life and what does its name stand for?
Hello there! I started the project in early 2010 after a musical hiatus. I had recently fallen back in love with music and was really liking what was emerging from the industrial and electronic scene, after what I had considered had become a little stagnant a few years before. The name in essence comes from the reality that all things eventually die or come to an end. The subject matter of what I write about is all very real, nihilistic and dare I say cynical.
That’s why I named it Cease2Xist.
‘Zero Future’ was really a real return to form for me. I hadn’t really written anything new in two years and when I sat down and began writing new material it didn’t flow. This encouraged myself to start experimenting with other styles and techniques that were quite alien to me. This proved to take longer and less methodical than how I had previously worked on 2014s ‘WIYGN?’ EP, which was initially intended to be a full album. I ended up getting quite bored with the material and style I was working on at the time. I had developed a “signature” sound that was just not exciting me anymore, so I cut the album from 10-12 planned tracks to a much smaller 6. I just wanted to try something different! My favourite artists are constantly changing and evolving with each release and I have a huge amount of respect for that.
I had originally had the name ‘Astro-Void’ penciled in as an album title and the demos I worked on at the time we’re much more melodic. I came to the realisation that this isn’t what Cease2Xist meant to me, it just wasn’t me you know… I scrapped those ideas and began work on something much darker and heavier.
I view ‘Zero Future’ as my most accomplished and personal song writing to date. Gone are the over used lead synth and predictable beats, switching them for darker and more experimental sounds. I spent the time between releases really understanding production and sound design, I think this really shows on the new album and I’m really proud of it.
On Sunday 30th April you will appear for the “Brutalism 2017” event in London respectively, alongside industrial living legends Cubanate. How do feel about this? What are you going to present on this night?
I feel absolutely honoured to be playing this show. Cubanate are a huge inspiration for me, they were a staple in DJ sets in my earlier days and I’ve been very excited to be back in London for this amazing show. This is our first show since the release of ‘Zero Future’ so we will be playing a lot from the album, and as always we will bring our relentless energy, vitriol and fury we always present on stage. Don’t miss it!
Regarding ‘Zero Future’ which is the main lyrical concept behind this?
There is a strong running theme throughout this album, as with every C2X album. This time around I give an unbiased view of the current situation of the world and everything that is ugly about it. I don’t like to preach or hold opinions in my lyrics, instead I try to ring attention to what makes me angry. Tracks like ‘Dirty World’ speak about police brutality and corrupt politics. Something that I think you’ll agree is pretty nasty right now. A personal favourite is the track ‘Mechanical Medicine’ which is a cryptic tale of someone dealing with schizophrenia and split personality but told from the perspective of someone who has created an artificial intelligence that it’s flawed in design. The verses of that song are of one persona and the chorus is from another. ‘Take Comfort In The Void’ deals with issues about loss, love and feeling like a stranger. I always want to tell a tale with my lyrics and let people relate to them while making up their own conclusions to what they could be about.
Harsh vocals, cataclysmic beats, solid production, futuristic thematology. One could say that you are following the classic harsh industrial recipe. Please discuss…
I guess so yeah. I do try to draw inspiration from other musical genres and mediums though. You can hear strong punk and hardcore influences in my earlier material and more recently orchestral, middle eastern and film scores on ‘Zero Future’ I write what I like to write and don’t write it for anyone else. I’ve always had this attitude and without it sounding selfish I honestly don’t care what people think of my music. It’s always been very cathartic and always will be. I wouldn’t say that I write about futuristic themes, more about current and present topics.
I love industrial music and it holds a very special place in my heart.
‘Make the World A Bitter Place’ is among my favourite ones from your latest offering! Any special story behind this one?
The title comes from the saying ‘Make the world a better place’ but with a my tongue firmly in my cheek. The opening line ‘Do you think you can play God?’ really sums up the track. It basically is questioning anyone who has ever tried to control or force another person against their will. In the age of social media, people use it as a platform to hate and bully one another from the protective barrier of their computer. The lyric ‘Born a Jekyll, but live like Hyde’ is a direct reference to this kind of behaviour. The track also covers other themes like harassment, objectification and violence that is apparent globally.
Which is the main sound equipment you are using for letting out this awesome sound?
I work 90% of the time these days on software alone. My main go to tools are Native instruments, MASSIVE, Kontakt and Reaktor. I used a software synthesiser called Serum a lot for ‘Zero Future’, which is an absolute monster and a joy to program. There are a many more plugins I use but these are mainly my most frequent tools. Hardware wise I consistently use the Moog little fatty for rich bass lines. I also work a lot on vocal manipulation across many of my tracks to add interesting melodies and structure.
Which British industrial/electro bands/acts would you recommend we should pay attention to?
I have a huge amount of respect for the UK scene and its artists. There are some seriously underrated bands here. Obviously the guys in the bands respective projects are always top of my recommendation list; Ruinizer, Paresis, Crowns Of Bone… I’m honoured to have such amazing talent playing with me on stage. Defeat are again a criminally underrated band from the UK, really powerful and down right kick arse industrial. I too have a huge amount of respect for the Manchester based label Analogue Trash they manage to discover some insanely great artists and always excited to see what they put out. Obviously I’m biased here but all the acts on Armalyte Industries are all worth your attention.
Hope there is no “Zero Futures” for Cease2xist then. Plans?
Haha yeah no plans to Cease2Xist anytime soon! We have a tour planned in the summer as part of Beat:Cancer, the amazing charity that is seriously thriving at the moment and are honoured to be a part of. This kicks off on Friday 28th of July in Liverpool as 3 dual headline shows with Dreams Divide and support from Biomechanimal. There is also a Remix album planned to come out just before this tour with some seriously amazing artists all reworking tracks from ‘Zero Future’ as well as a new and quite surprising cover track. All will be revealed soon.
A message from Cease2xist to our fans & readers?
Always be yourself, don’t believe the things you read on the internet and question everything!
Thank you for the great interview!