Interview with Nightshade Trismegistus from Shed Skin

10 Fragen / 10 Antworten
Interview with Nightshade aka Stephan from Shed Skin


1.When and why did you become a musician ? 

I have gravitated towards darker music since very little. Going from facets of Duran Duran and the Cure to Korn to Sleepytime Gorilla Museum to Slipknot to Manson to Prince to Ozzy/Black Sabbath. When I was in high school (16/17 years old), I was introduced to Velvet Acid Christ, :W:, and Skinny Puppy on a mix CD that my friend made me. That was it. All I needed. I had clarity on what I want out of life. I was hooked and inspired instantly.

So, by the age 18 I had started to give college a try (a then Psychology major) and there I was constantly using the studio + rehearsal space that was on campus. This is where I started and wrote most of the first Heart of Thorns album. (Heart of Thorns was my project before Shed Skin.)

I had access to several instruments including acoustic pianos which were beautiful and an amazing experience to play on. There was an Alesis QuadraSynth and other instruments and gear. I ended u buying a Juno-106 and subsequently a Cheetah ms6 plus some outboard rack gear. I was even further addicted and hooked to the level of control I had in terms of production. This only spurred on my passion for producing electronic music. I have been gear-obsessed ever since.

I was not making industrial or post-industrial music at the time. I was moreso interested in making experimental and disturbing music. Almost like film score music or soundtracks to a very mise-en scene life not too different from my own.

Looking back, I really didn’t have a choice. I am through and through a dada artist to the core and also a black sheep. I can’t see myself as anything but an audio and visual artist.

2. What are your characteristics? What makes you special?

Other than my own flavour, I would have to say that it is the fact that I care about the planet and its flora, fauna, & humans.

3. Who and what inspired you?

My wife and daughter inspire me. The runes inspire me. The trees and fungus inspire me. The animals and humans inspire me. The gods inspire me. The ancestors inspire me. Dadaism inspires me. Silent Hill inspires me. The past inspires me. The alchemical process inspires me. The darkness and horror of Life inspires me. The beautiful, progressive, and amazing things in Life inspires me. My sehnsucht/verflucht/naudir inspires me. My calling & path inspire me.

In terms of musical artists I am inspired by so many acts, but to name a few crucial ones:

Velvet Acid Christ, Coil, Skinny Puppy, Abscess, LPF12, yelworC, :W:, Lycia, Fluke, :Of the Wand and th,  Moon:, Death in June, The Tear Garden, Current 93, Nurse With Wound, 6comm, Front Line Assembly, Praga Khan, AmGod, The Legendary Pink Dots, Wardruna, Carbon Based Lifeforms, Ministry, The Cure, Interlace, Frontline Assembly, Falgar, Stygian Hue, Agnes Obel, Emily Jane White, The Frozen Autumn, Dead Can Dance, Sopor AEternus, Cocteau Twins, Boy Harsher, Hocico, TerrorFrequenz, XP8, Heilung, Graveyard Bats, Bjork, Muteual Mortuary (<3 to the last)

The list goes on and on. There is lots of cool music from my friends that isn’t on the list that very much inspires me, like Aktion T4, Neon Distortion, Terracorpse, Dead Souls, Seborrheic Keratosis, Trash Bae, Kinkaku..

4. How do you imagine listening to your music? Where do you like to listen?

Ideally, a nice set ov speakers that sound large and warm; outside by the river and trees whilst having a fire and a few beers.

5. Who are your most important role models and why?​

Ogre, David Tibet, Edward Ka-Spel, and Johnn Balance have all for a long time been a tremendous role model for me in terms of execution. The afore mentioned tend to present this beautiful visage of life that transcends everyday, but also relishes in such – not afraid to explore the Shadow Self and darkest corners therein.

Angrboda is probably my main role model as I can only imagine her strife and hardships. She still comes out so strong at the end ov the day. She is my main source ov Strength and Guidance towards being my best self. My wife is the tangible personification ov such things, so my wife Angelique would be my #1 role model.

6. What role do social media play in your career? How important is YouTube or Instagram for you?​

I like the idea of social media to promote my music and share music I like with my friends, however in reality it is the heavy lifting aspect of being a musician that I am not good at.

7. Do you actually do anything besides the music?

Yes! I paint, garden, and try to take care ov my family!!

8. What has been the best performance you’ve seen so far?

Such a tough question…. a few years ago, Haujobb, FLA, and SP put on an amazing performance, but I recently saw The Legendary Pink Dots in 2019.. So I idk.. Comparing apples to oranges maybe?

9. Who should play you when your life is filmed?

Oh… I don’t know. Probably Franz Kafka or Diego from The Frozen Autumn (we look alike)..

10. Last question: What do you want for the next 10 years, what do you need for it?

I need for the US government to relinquish its citizens from tyranny.

I need people to care about one another, the animals we inhabit this planet with, and the Earth itself.

I also need for my family to thrive.

..more studio gear would be nice too! ;D

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