In Corona Corner, we are asking musicians how the outbreak has effected them, how did they adapt to the situation, what did they learn. Bassist and keyboardist of Canadian Motion Device, Andrea Menoudakis, shares with us Quarantine Story.
Hi! How are you doing during corona outbreak?
I’ve been doing pretty well during this pandemic. A lot of things have changed since March and it’s hard to believe it’s already been almost eight months since this all started. Besides the music aspect of my life, working with kids is another major part for me. Switching to online tutoring and having to be on the computer for eight hours a day at the start was a little weird but I’m also thankful I had that option. In regards to music, the timing of the lockdown had a more positive effect than negative. As a result of our latest successful crowd-funder, we now have our own recording studio so we had a lot more time to create and write music for the new album “Motion Device IV”. Exploring the recording world and experimenting with all the new equipment was a huge plus for me especially when it came to keyboards and piano.
What have you cancelled/postponed due to coronavirus?
In the past, once we released an album we would do some shows to support it. A lot of that is not possible now so it will just have to wait as far as the new album is concerned. We’re always looking to play new places in the U.S. because most of our fan base is there but that can’t happen for a while. We even thought about traveling to a central location in Europe to play but that looks like it will be on the backburner for quite some time. We’ll just have to keep doing what we do best – write and record music and make music videos.
How the global coronavirus pandemic is directly impacting bands?
This virus will really affect those bands whose income relies heavily on live shows. In our case, our main focus has always been to write and record music. Our past gigs have been a lot of fun but what we love most is creating. Now that we have our own studio and the necessary equipment at our fingertips the coronavirus hasn’t affected us as much as others. Being in lockdown mode during the recording process of the new album gave us a lot more time to add the little extra touches. For the first time we had a real opportunity to fine-tune our songs and at the end of the day, I think it really showed when you listen to MDIV.
How are you keeping your fans during this chaotic period?
We’re always in constant communication with fans through social media. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, we’re usually posting daily. In the earlier stages of the pandemic having the extra time to practice and create gave me the perfect opportunity to start my own YouTube channel as well. Having a piano channel to go along with my brother’s drum channel gives the fans extra content that they normally wouldn’t get. Gigging is out of the question at the moment but lucky for us creating new music and shooting music videos isn’t. ‘VOID’ and ‘Blindfold It Away’ are two music videos from our latest album that have been posted so far and we’re looking forward to doing a lot more of that kind of thing. If we have it our way, most if not all the tunes on MDIV will have a music video to go along with it…We just love making them.
What will metal look like when we re-emerge from isolation?
It’s hard to say what metal or any other genre of music will look like after isolation. We all have different opinions but no one will really know what will happen. It also really depends on where you live. We have fans here in Canada but oddly enough the numbers don’t compare or even come close to the fans we have in the U.S. and Europe.
Who will suffer the most after all: musicians, organizers promoters…
Almost everyone in the music industry is taking a hit. Most of all those who are involved with live shows. Event planners, crew members, venue workers, tour managers, lighting technicians, roadies, sound engineers, etc. I think live music won’t be the same for a while. People being apprehensive about attending large gatherings will definitely come into play as well.
What is your isolation soundtrack?
I go through a lot of phases and modes when it comes to my personal music playlist. I’ve been listening to a lot of classic rock and 80’s rock lately. Bands like the Scorpions and Def Leppard. “No One Like You”, “Pour Some Sugar on Me”, “More Than A Feelin” by Boston to name just a few tunes. Most of what I listen to are bands like Muse, Dream Theater and Alter Bridge. “Isolation” by Alter Bridge is very fitting during these times don’t you think?
Besides gigs, what/whom do you miss the most?
What I miss most during this pandemic is just simply hanging out with family and friends and going out to restaurants on weekends. I miss visiting my grandparents or getting together with cousins, aunts and uncles as often as we would normally – we really are a tightly knit and large family. Also traveling. Not that we traveled out of the country often but I do miss going to Niagara Falls during the summer which was the norm for us. Overall, not having to be so cautious of our surroundings and questioning where I should go and whom I should be around will be really missed.
Do you have any rehearsals during quarantine? If yes, how do they look like?
One thing our fans have been dying to hear is a live streaming show from the band. We’ll definitely be looking to do that in the future. We’ve always been lucky enough to have rehearsal space at our disposal from day one. We now have our own recording studio to rehearse in so it’s that much more convenient. Our latest music video “Blindfold It Away” was actually shot in the studio so if you want to see what it looks like check out the video. It’s not perfect and it’s kind of small but in the end, it’s very functional for us. The whole new MDIV album was recorded in that studio and it was all made possible by our fans – they’re the reason we’ve made it this far!
Thank you so much for your time. Stay safe!