Tera Melos' Nick Reinhart on the State of Experimental Music: "It Doesn't Seem Like There's a Lot of Experimenting Going On"

Tera Melos' Nick Reinhart on the State of Experimental Music: 'It Doesn't Seem Like There's a Lot of Experimenting Going On'
X'ed Out, Tera Melos' eagerly anticipated follow-up to the genre-demolishing, Exclaim!-approved Patagonian Rats, is just around the corner. But while the Sacramento band have a big North American tour ahead of them in support of the new album, which is now streaming here on Exclaim.ca, the group apparently have the current state of the experimental music scene on their minds.

Speaking to Exclaim!, creatively restless guitarist/vocalist Nick Reinhart explains:

"I went off on a pretty good rant the other day on the plagiarism that seems to be happening in the 'underground' music world, which is really weird because you tend to associate that with pop music. Like, 'of course this Lady Gaga song sounds exactly like this Madonna song.' Obviously. Why's that any surprise to anyone?

"But it's so weird to me when that idea infiltrates cool experimental music. That's a thing that I've observed over the last, I don't know, year or so I guess. It's so strange to me that no one is called out; passes are given. I don't have specific examples, but it's a weird thing for me. The whole thing in the experimental music world is everyone's in their own vibe; no one's just recycling ideas."

Clearly "weirded" out, he goes on to contextualize how he feels the focus of the genre has shifted, and not in a positive direction.

"Now it's so watered down with people just kind of referencing each other. It's weird to be a part of that. I don't even know if we are a part of that; I don't know where our band falls.... It would be nice if the whole world that I guess, by default, we're a part of, stayed creative; moving forward and not backwards and side to side. That's the whole idea of being progressive. That's what we hope we're doing with our band, not that it's fully intentional, but it's just what our band is. Hopefully that comes back around and we start seeing really interesting things happening again. What happened that it's become a lame thing to try to get good at what you do?

"To reiterate: I don't think music generally needs to be like that, I'm just talking specifically within the experimental genre, whatever that umbrella covers. It doesn't seem like there's a lot of experimenting going on anymore. It's been co-opted a bit, not to the degree that punk music was, but it'd be really sad if that happened to something really special and important."

Tera Melos are playing Vancouver on April 20, Toronto on April 28 and Montreal on April 29. You can see all those dates here.

X'ed Out is out April 16 via Sargent House. To find out if Reinhart walks his talk, check out our advance stream of the album here.