When you watch a videoclip or listen to a song on your streaming devices, you only witness the finished product. When you visit a concert or a festival you witness the live music and the stage performance of your favourite artist! But before all that can be enjoyed, there are a lot of things taking place to make it all happen. Artists, musicians, bands, venue directors, they all have their own story to tell!
In this series I’m going to talk to several different people, to find out what the stories are behind it all! From a “big shot” artist, all the way to promotion and record companies.
In this episode I had the opportunity to talk to Dane Andrew Marek. Hailing from the second largest country in the world, Canada is best known for their wild and rugged landscape, moose’s, ice hockey and of course maple syrup. But music is also a well-known product with bands and artists like Annihilator, Steppenwolf and (perhaps) best known Nickelback.
Dane Andrew Marek is the founding father of Captive In Lakeside. A brand new band that saw the light of live in one of the beautiful rural areas of Ontario and with a debut album all set for release! So when the opportunity arose to have a (what turned out to be a great and interesting) talk with Dane, I gladly accepted it!
Hi Dane! First of all, Thanks for taking the time for Maizter Underground and this interview! How are you doing?
I’m doing great, Patrick. Thanks for having me. I appreciate all of your time and hard work you put into Maizter Underground.
To kick things off. What can you tell me about yourself?
I was born and raised in Kenora, Ontario – where I currently reside. Music was always a part of my life. I grew up playing piano and transitioned to guitar in my early teen years. I played in a few local bands over the years which was a huge help with getting me to where I am today.
Before we dive into your own music, what are bands/artists that influence you and which bands/artists are (if any) your favourites?
It seems to be ever changing. A lot of the bands that I listened to during my teen years never seem to get old, and will constantly influence my writing style. The bands that really influenced my album are Every time I die, Alexisonfire, Empty, He Is Legend, Dead and Divine, Ritual, The Holly Springs Disaster and Misery Signals.
At the moment you are working hard towards the release of your debut album. Before we go a little further into that, what made you decide to create your own music?
Writing my own music always came naturally. I was 12 years old when I wrote my first song and continually wrote songs since. I was fascinated with the fact that I could reflect my emotions and feelings through my songs. It gave me the opportunity to express a more intimate side of myself that I normally wouldn’t share with anyone. However, I didn’t have access or ability to capture my songs how I wanted to portray them, so I took a course in audio engineering and fell in love. I spent quite a few years learning about producing, mixing and mastering. Once I had my home studio set up, I would write my own music to practice mixing. I ended up with a huge amount of songs that never saw the light of day. That got old pretty quick and I felt that I should work towards something a little bigger. That’s when I decided to put together an album. It was somewhat of an escapism for me, as well.
When I sat down to start writing my debut album “Skinhunger” – I started with a blank canvas, just my guitar and a metronome. I didn’t have any songs or ideas prepared. I would go to my studio, put my headphones on and begin writing. That process was very freeing and therapeutic.. I allowed my emotions to guide the writing process with complete creative freedom. Sometimes it came naturally within minutes, and I would be piecing together guitar/drum sections fairly quick. Other times I spent hours and had nothing to show for it. Regardless, I had a lot of fun writing and recording the instruments. When it came to laying down the vocals, I was lost as I didn’t sing. I was hoping to find someone to sing, but I never found the right fit. I decided to set my fears aside and give it a shot. It took a while to find my voice, especially one that would complement the style of my music. I feel that I got pretty close to what I was looking for, in terms of style. I learned a lot and have a deep respect for any metal vocalist – it is hard work.
How did Captive in Lakeside came to exist and where did the name come from?
I had a hard time finding a name. I was very picky and wanted the name to reflect myself and my music. I reside in an area of Kenora that is named Lakeside. A lot of my songs touch on the subject on being imprisoned – mentally and emotionally. Also, the amount of time I spent in my studio writing the album away from the world also made me feel quite isolated. Captive In Lakeside seemed to be quite fitting.
What kind of music Captive in Lakeside is going to bring to the world?
That is a good question! I can’t seem to put my finger on the exact style or genre of the music. Aside from it being heavy, aggressive, fast and in your face. I tried to not gear it in any direction of a specific genre so I could stay true to the writing process. I wanted to the music to be unique and not too similar to any other artists. I felt that I did a great job on capturing what I envisioned.
At the moment, work is progressing steadily towards completion and release of the first album! That’s something really special to look forward too. What can you tell me about the first idea’s and how those idea’s translated into your music writing process?
The first song that I started writing was “Skinhunger”. The intro guitars were the first part of the album that was tracked. I set up a metronome and came up with the intro riff. The transition from faster guitars to a slower break for the verse gave a lot of room for vocals. I was quite happy with how it was developing. There is some weird stuff happening in the song. Near the end of the song I initially let the guitars ring out with some feedback. It sparked some ideas and I decided to add something different at the end. I had a simple clean guitar play over the distant feedback. There is a lot that is layered into the outro – more guitars, feedback, piano, drums and strings. That opened up some doors for me with the rest of the songs. I left my creative freedom completely open to what the song was asking for.
Captive in Lakeside’s debut album is not far away. Can you tell us a little bit more about the album itself and what to expect?
The album is very much a reflection of myself. I didn’t hide much and stayed true to myself. It is quite raw and is very much in your face. There is a lot of stuff happening in each song. I strayed away from having too much repetition which keeps it interesting. The album has 10 songs. The play-time is 36 minutes. If things go well I might add a “B-side album” as I have a few other songs and some instrumentals that I did not put on the album.
I will be releasing the album through Distrokid. The music will be available on all major streaming platforms.
Is there an official release date planned?
The album will be released on June 23, 2023. You can pre save through Spotify at this link
Like all artists and bands, you hope your music will hit a soft spot with your listeners and that they will appreciate and love the music you create. Obviously that is not something you accomplish overnight. Do you have a “perfect picture” in your mind, about how your musical career would look like in say 10 years, if all goes the way you imagined?
My biggest goal was to just go through the entire process of writing, recording, mixing and producing my own album. It was something that I always wanted to experience since I was young. I was happy with just that. The rest is all a bonus. I will be happy if a few listeners get something out of the songs. Whether it is some form of relation, a connection or pure enjoyment from the artistic side. I won’t ever stop writing music, it is something that I need to do. As for now I plan to continue what I am doing. It would be nice to branch out into the music community and build from there.
As upcoming and aspiring artist, you probably come across a lot of (unexpected) challenges. What did you encounter so far that blew you of your socks?
The most difficult challenge has been trying to do everything myself. For my next album it will be nice to work alongside another musician or two. I would also get help with the marketing side. I also don’t think I would mix or master my own album again. I hate to admit it, but I remixed each song at least 30-40 times. It can be very defeating. There were many times where I was close to giving up. The bright side is that there are a lot of people in the music community that are willing to help and assist. A good friend (Nich Longe from “The Lair Music Studio”) guided me through a lot of the marketing process which saved me from making a lot of mistakes. He helped a lot with suggestions on the mixes. I will be hiring him for any further writing, mixing and marketing help.
Coming towards the end, Captive in Lakeside sets its first footsteps in the metalworld, obviously with the intention to gain a firm foothold. Are there any long-term plans made regarding the album release? And can we expect videoclips and such?
I will be adding a lot of pictures, video clips, play-throughs and possibly some content from the mixing process. I will release a few singles before I release the album.
Well, loads of interesting things on the (close) horizon! I honestly can say I really look forward towards the upcoming debut of Captive In Lakeside!
I want to thank you for your time, and on behalf of everyone at Maizter Underground I want to wish you, and of course Captive in Lakeside, all the best with the debut release!
To make sure you won’t miss anything Captive In Lakeside announces or releases, make sure you follow them through the following links!