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A Dirty Dozen with NUCLEAR WINTER – August 2021

| 23 August 2021 | Reply

We get Nuclear Winter’s Gary Stautmeister to discuss new music, influences, and more…

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets you put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

My latest album is Greystone and I’m very pleased with the result. I didn’t try to add anything that was kind of hidden in the songs – I was trying to keep everything quite apparent which I think helped it be more focused. I wanted to take what I’d done on my StormScapes EP and make it more refined.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

I was fascinated by musical instruments from quite an early age and I took up learning the violin when I was about 9 years old and then also some classical guitar and piano, but then a few years later I saw bands like Bon Jovi / Def Leppard on TV and right away I realized the electric guitar was what I really wanted to learn. So I started learning the electric guitar when I was 13 and that’s been my main instrument since.

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

I was really inspired by bands like Iron Maiden, Metallica, Mötley Crüe, etc, with Nirvana being my biggest influence at the time. Nevermind was great as well because for a young guitarist the songs were quite easy to learn.

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

When I got more serious about recording around 2013 my main influences were Dark Tranquillity, Strapping Young Lad, Rammstein, Paradise Lost & Tristania.

5. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

I really need a good drummer rather than programming the drums myself. Samus (66Samus) would be my top choice – to me he’s the perfect metal drummer.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

They can mostly expect a standard melodic death metal sound with added electronic elements. Luckily no reviewer has made any comparison to anyone I wasn’t happy with. Most of the time I’ve been amazed they’d associate my music with certain high profile bands.. but I won’t complain about that!

7. When your band is hanging out together, who cooks, who gets the drinks in, and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

With me being a solo musician that doesn’t really apply to me unfortunately, but when hanging out with other musicians it’s usually just – order pizza and bring your own drinks.. and actually not talk much about music.

8. When was the last time you were starstruck and who was it?

It’s not that recent, but when I discovered Lord of the Lost I was like how have I not known about this band. I heard their song Morgana which blew me away. Amazing melody with exceptional screaming.

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

The best part for me is creative freedom – especially as a solo musician. My main job though is working as a motion graphics artist so without music I’d probably get more involved with that.

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

I don’t feel anything relevant was ever left out but may be asking what struggles there are as a musician (especially in Zimbabwe) This has been asked though in a podcast I was on but it’s certainly quite a big topic. The biggest issue I think is access to musical/recording equipment. There are a couple of music shops here but the prices are crazy due to import and markup fees. Whatever you see on Amazon for eg, You can expect will be at least double the price here – usually more. And with Zimbabwe’s economy being so bad and jobs not paying well it makes it extremely difficult so get set up with what you ideally need. As for questions I’m tired of answering.. I can’t think of any that are too tedious but one I struggle with is ‘What makes your music unique?’ Ideally that answer should come from a fan.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over,” even if it didn’t change your current situation?

The only thing I wish is that I’d worn ear plugs more often back when playing in these ridiculously loud gigs. I don’t have any noticeable hearing issues but I’d probably have better high frequency hearing at this stage.

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

It would have to be Nirvana’s Nevermind. definitely the biggest motivation for me as a teenage guitarist because they made sounding ‘rough’ cool and yet it was a groundbreaking album.

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Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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