We got the chance to chat with Montreal musician Patrick Krief of Krief for an Artist Spotlight. We think you'll love his unique psychedelic-tinged sound and he had a lot of great stuff to share with us!
1. How did you come to pursue music and how long have you been at it?
"I was born into a musical family. I can’t remember a time when music wasn’t a major part of my life. I got my first electric guitar at age ten. That’s when things got quite serious for me." 2. Could you walk us through your process of writing music?
"I never sit down with the intention to write music. I don’t have writing sessions or anything like that .. (Not for Krief music anyway).. I typically get random urges to get to an instrument, and with a bit of noodling around some ideas will come up. I’ll track those ideas to a voice recorder, and move on from it. Months later, I scroll through all the ideas, and see which ones I want to finish. Often times I have no recollection of the song, so it’s quite easy for me to listen objectively. Once the song is more or less structured, I go straight into recording it."
3. What artists have inspired you in your career?
"Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Bob Marley, Diana Ross, and some more recent stuff, too. Like Tame Impala, Radiohead and Arcade Fire." 4. Do you have any favorite music gear (guitars, amps, effects pedals, keyboards, etc.) that you love to use? If so, what’s the story on them?
"There are a few of these. My Gibson SJ150 has that instant Bowie/Harrison acoustic guitar tone. It’s hard to beat. I’ve loaned it out to many bands for their albums as it’s come to have that reputation for recording so beautifully." "Hagstrom H8 Bass: I’ve turned a few bassists onto this instrument, most notably Mishka from Patrick Watson, who has taken it to the next level. It has an unbeatable tone. No amp needed. Just right in the console and thing bass sounds incredible. My uncle gave it to me when I was 11. I assumed it was a piece of junk and had it in the closet for years. Then one day I was reading a Jimi Hendrix bio and noticed a photo in which he was playing one. I think the Bass had been in the closet for 10 years by then." "1965 Bandmaster Head: It was a long and painful journey of dissatisfaction before discovering this amp. I must have tried and toured with at least 40 different amps over the years. I’d even tried a bandmaster but not been convinced by it, but combining it with a 2x12 Greenback cabinet is what made the difference. It is the only amp I ever use now." 5. Can you describe the vibe at your live shows? Also, what do you enjoy most about a venue when you do a show?
"There are so many things to enjoy about a venue, but it all starts with the people involved. A good promoter, and a good host who makes you feel welcome is such a great start to a show day. I’ve had so many of these amazing people just get you in the right mindset after a long drive etc. From there, it’s always great when a venue has great stage sound, and all those great things, but the thing I like most is a room in which you feel connected to the audience."
"The vibe at our shows varies. There have been many formations of the live band, from a more acoustic version to a 6 piece, super- loud band version. With the absence of touring these days, I feel I’d likely prefer the more intimate shows when it all starts up again. Get re-acquainted and connect with people as closely as possible." 6. What is one thing that you want the public to know about your music?
"I just want people to know and feel that it’s earnest. That it’s a cathartic process for me, and I’m grateful to be able to connect with it. I’d like people to know that." 7. Tell us about the writing, recording, and promotion process for your new album Chemical Trance.
"This album was slightly unique in that it was written as an album. Not as a collection of songs. It started with the songs I am The Pillar of Darkness In Your Life and Line Stepper, and I wrote the rest of the record outward from there. The hope was to have an album that could be listened to as one piece of music, but also as a collection of songs." "The promotion is just getting going. My friend Maia Davies has been making videos for every song on the record, which we hope to string together as one piece by the end of the cycle."