SikTh of the best…
SikTh are heading to Birmingham on the back of a main stage appearance at Download during the summer and with a new album released this week. Paul Castles catches up with singer and songwriter Mikee W Goodman.
Hi Mikee, many thanks for talking to Midlands Rocks. First of all can we ask how proud you are of your new album, The Future in Whose Eyes? The feeling seems to be that this is arguably your finest work yet?
Mikee: Thanks, that’s a great compliment. I feel it is in many ways our best work. I am really proud of what we achieved and I do think my vocal writing went to new levels on this and it is really good musically too. There are a lot of good melodies that I really went to town on lyrically.
MR: This is the first album to feature Joe Rosser (ex-Aliases) on vocals – how has he settled into the band since joining a couple of year ago and what extra qualities does he bring to SikTh?
Mikee: Joe has totally settled in now. He’s a great vocalist and has a lot of range, he sings very well live as well as in the studio. Also his rhythm is the best thing he brings to the live shows.
MR: How did the songwriting process go with the new album, does it come easier these days or is it the opposite?
Mikee: I can’t speak for the others but personally writing melodies and rhythms is fun. I can write many to each piece of music , and it can go in many different ways. But as SikTh is so complex I can’t just write a poem then sing it, I have to fit words to melodies and sounds. The process was steady for a while but towards the end it was a bit stressful as I had to wait for music to be finalised, haha. Absolutely stress to the last minute!
Mr: Is there any particular concept or theme uniting the new songs? Is it a mix of reality and fantasy?
Mikee: I found that I was writing a lot about the evils in this world, the shadows, the undertones of cities, organised evil, profiteers of evil, social media and the decline of an creatively inspired mind.
MR: Is the recording process fun for you, or is it more a case of business head on and get the job done properly?
Mikee: I tend to record as I write as I’ve got great mic pre-amps etc . For me that’s become the normal way and I like working like that.
MR: Do you feel having a band member also producing the album (Dan Weller, guitar) make things gel more easily?
Mikee: Honestly I wouldn’t know, as we’ve not really had an outside producer for SikTh. Myself though, I self-produce myself always; then I’d work with Dan W when it came to Joe’s vocals as I wrote them so we’d work together on Joe’s production.
MR: Whose idea was it to work with Spencer Sotelo (Periphery) on the song ‘Cracks of Light’ and what was his reaction when you asked him?
Mikee: It all came about when we were on tour with Periphery in the States last year – Spencer and I were out having a drink one night when we talked about it, he was saying he was a big fan of ‘Death Of A Dead Day’. I joined them on stage when they played their London show early this year.
MR: You obviously all hit it off when you toured the US with Periphery last year?
Mikee: Yeah, they are just the friendliest band I’ve met, well them and Toothgrinder. That tour was amazing, also Chon were on that tour who were friendly but very quiet!
MR: That was your first visit as a band to the States – Did the experience feel much different from being on the road in the UK?
Mikee: It was amazing! The journeys were longer but more picturesque. The fans were so excited as we had never been. I loved it so much, was a fresh feeling, really hope to get back out there again.
MR: You’ve got a UK tour in December so will this be the first proper platform to test out the new songs on the live stage?
Mikee: Yeah we are gonna hopefully play four or five of them , let’s see.
MR: Are there plans to tour further afield in the New Year?
Mikee: We’re still planning for 2018 but we already have announced some shows and festivals in Europe and there will definitely be some exciting stuff coming up.
MR: SikTh have frequently been held up as leaders of the UK Djent movement – Are you comfortable with that or does it in any way sit heavily with you all?
Mikee: Actually I’m ok with whatever label they give styles of music, as long as Sikth sound like Sikth and no one else.
- SikTh play Mama Roux’s in Birmingham on Monday December 4
- The Future in Whose Eyes is released on December 1, via Peaceville Records