When we started Metal Jacket Magazine, we wanted to somehow bring our readers closer to bands that might have a harder time breaking through to listeners in the sea of bands and music.
To begin with, it would be best if you introduced your band.
We are a Montreal-based quintet formed in 2011. We write and play the music that is a blend of progressive rock, jazz, classical, and metal. We try to innovate and bring something new to the music world with our original compositions and cover songs. The fact that we have a violinist as a main figure helps us (we think) to distinguish ourselves from other bands of similar genres.
The band is composed of Olivier Allard (violin), Alexandre Dagenais (drums) Nico Damoulianos (Bass), Camille Delage (piano & keyboards), and Kevin Paquet (guitars). Olivier holds a Ph.D. in violin performance from the University of Montreal, while Camille graduated from the classical piano program at CEGEP St-Laurent in Montreal.
Is it hard to keep all the members together since this music has no income?
Absolutely not! We have had the same line-up since 2014 and everybody is 100% invested in the band! We are good friends and love each other very much so that helps too.
How do you finance yourself and can you cover the costs of recording, equipment, and concerts with music?
For the moment, most of the costs are covered by us. We hope that might change in the future! The best way to support the bands you love is to buy their music/merch!
What made you start playing metal music? Who were your role models in the beginning and has that changed over time?
Clearly, Dream Theater was a huge influence on all of us when we were young. Now we’re into more modern stuff like Haken, Leprous, and also instrumental bands like Plini and jazzmen like Tigran Hamasyan or Jacob Collier.
Is it hard to find a publisher or is it better to self-publish considering the internet?
We’ve never been published by anybody except ourselves so we can’t compare. It is very easy though to just release your music out there nowadays. You still have to promote your music through music videos, publicity, social media presence, etc. It’s a lot of work!
What have you published so far?
We have two LPs: Erosion (2017) and The Descent (2022). We’ve also released 2 singles as part of a videogame soundtrack (Navyblue & the Spectrum Killers) called Navyblue and Lights of Iberia (2018), as well as a Vivaldi metal arrangement, Winter (2019).
How do you create songs, how do you record them?
Kevin (guitar) and Olivier (violin) are the main writers. Dage (drums) will of course write (or overwrite!) our drum composition to enhance and unify all instruments. We prefer writing alone, then sharing the work with each other, and making a couple modifications. For all the material we’ve released so far, we’ve recorded bass, guitars, and keyboards right from our own studio. For drums and violins, we have to go to a bigger studio. For our latest album The Descent, we’ve also used a lot of VSTs for strings, keyboard sounds, and also drum samples.
What is your favorite song you’ve made so far and why?
It’s a hard choice but let’s pick Erosion. It’s the longest song we’ve ever written, and it took us so much time to write. We have definitely grown a lot after making this music. It made us realize how much potential we had and made us feel ”in the gang”, having a 20+ min song alongside our prog heroes like Dream Theater, Symphony X or Neal Morse.
Where can readers listen to you and maybe buy your material?
We are on every digital platform. You can watch our two latest music videos, Hoax, and Breach, on YouTube :
For all our music/merch, you can go to our Bandcamp Page.
How do you organize concerts, is it difficult for you, and how many people come to such concerts?
We usually self-produce our concerts, at least those we do in our city, Montreal. It’s not difficult, just time-consuming! Montreal is a big music city, with many bands out there. It’s rather easy to find bands to play with. We usually have between 100 and 200 for our shows.
In which countries have you played and where did you have the best time, where is the crowd the craziest?
For now, we only played in Canada. Our best concert must have been when we launched our first album Erosion at the Plaza Theater in 2017.
What do you think about the digital release and is it serious like CD or LP?
Of course. If the music is good, it’s good on any platform. Owning a digital release of your favorite band is also a hundred times better than just listening to them on streaming platforms.
Was metal music more honest than today?
No. Maybe people think that because their favorite bands grow older and aren’t releasing good material anymore. But there are fabulous new artists bringing up refreshing new ideas.
How do you comment on this bunch of sub-genres in metal and is it good for metal or is it destroying it?
We think it demonstrates how versatile metal can be and how the genre can be molded to taste.
Do you support this commercialization of metal music and how about the wearing of metal t-shirts by some “exposed” people who do not belong to this philosophy of metal music?
We’re not the kind of guys that think metal should stay underground and that fans should follow a certain life philosophy dictated by what music they’re listening to. In addition, any publicity is good publicity!
What would you change in the world of metal and would you like to go back to the time before the internet if you remember it at all?
The way some concert promoters treat opening bands is awful. It’s very common for an opening band to play for free, exposure being their only salary. Also, we have to find a way as a society to give more value to music. Right now music has no value. You get to listen to everything for free on Spotify. That makes people think they shouldn’t have to pay for music. We have to think collectively of ways to change that. Encourage patronage, invest more in culture, make music education compulsory, etc. Maybe in that sense, times were better when there was no Internet…
How important is supporting the local scene and can you single out a band from your area that you would recommend to our readers?
It is very important to support the local scene. In Quebec, there are many good progressive rock/metal bands: Ashbreather, Universe Effects, Karcius, and many more.
How do you see this situation in the world and how do you think it will develop? Will they imprison us again, scare us or maybe send us into a big war?
In Canada, the situation is fine. If the question refers to the pandemic, we think the government did what was best for global health. We don’t abide by conspiracy theories. Although, the situation between Russia and Ukraine is worrying. We send our prayers to the people of Ukraine and hope the conflict can resolve soon.
Finally, what would you say to our readers and why should they listen to you in the sea of bands that are offered to them every day?
If you guys are curious to hear a unique-sounding metal band, one with a violin instead of a vocalist, then look no further, Cydemind has many surprises to offer! Thanks for reading and follow us on our social media to stay in touch!
Band Name: Cydemind
Album Title: The Descent
Release Date: November 4th, 2022
Distribution: Distribution Amplitude
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