Interview – Fall of Knowledge

By: Jenna Melanson
Photo Credit: Mike Ness

Montreal, QC based alt-rock band, Fall of Knowledge recently launched their debut EP, “Silent Majority” and I had the chance to ask vocalist, Micah a series of questions about their background, music and much more!

First off, can you take a moment to introduce yourselves to the readers?

Hi. My name is Micah. Singer/songwriter, producer and frontman for FoK. I’m a gemini, like long walks on the beach and ice cream

When did you decide you wanted to pursue music?

I started singing for my grandparents when i was 5. They loved it and signed me to a lifetime contract. Pretty big pressure when you’re so young, and learning to be an songwriter, engineer, accountant, lawyer, booking agent, marketing guru, and band manager took a few weeks longer than anticipated, but i’m trying to live up to it.

You released your debut EP entitled Silent Majority in November 2015, how has the response been?

Response has been amazing from those I’ve communicated with so far. My music seems to appeal to a wide range of audience demographics, which is everything i could hope for. If people from all different walks of life still manage to hear something that resonates with them, I’m obviously silencing the voices in my head long enough to express my feelings in a somewhat coherent manner 😉

You worked with Mike Turner and Adam Kasper on the EP, how was that experience?

Mike Turner (the Miklopedia) – a Canadian icon, brilliant guitarist and engineer, and also a modern day genius. This man knows bits of information about topics you haven’t even heard of…made for some great conversations, and some heated ones too haha. His studio (The Pocket) in Toronto is a really comfortable space, and I actually recorded a full heavy rock album there with Dave McMillan and Jason Pierce killing the bass and drums respectively. The whole process took the better part of 6 months due to scheduling issues, and ironically before the mixing/mastering stage began, I decided  to change musical directions a little and moved to MTL. I found some great guys here and we recorded a few new songs;  the combined efforts are found on Silent Majority.

The story behind working with Adam Kasper is pretty awe inspiring to me. I had several music industry pros give me the same advice…. ‘The best way to find a compatible mixing engineer is to research who mixed the albums of your favorite artists; then contact them.’ Needless to say I thought this was terrible advice because no unsigned indie musician  can afford to hire a Grammy winning engineer, let alone even obtain contact information. Undaunted, I ruthlessly stalked 2 world famous engineers until each responded. The 1st wanted $8000.00 PER SONG, the other told me how much he loved my voice,  heard great potential in my songs, and would love to be involved with my project. This is the great Adam Kasper…an extremely humble and generous of spirit human being. A true mensch. We worked over the phone and skype to get my songs mixed, and he treated my project like it was the next Soundgarden album. Sometimes it takes effort to find them, but there are beautiful people everywhere.

Can you explain to us how a Fall of Knowledge writing session goes?

Honestly there isn’t really a defined way to write an FoK song, because I prefer approaching songwriting from different angles. Aimless and  unencumbered jams have resulted in a lot of great unrefined ideas, which i later combine to create full songs. Sometimes I play one chord and write a whole song based off that. Anonymous was born from that grooving bass line, which actually started out as a heavily delayed guitar riff. I looped it and wrote the entire song in 10 minutes. Lemonade was the exact opposite. It began as a trippy synth-based song with a chorus of “You won’t say hello” repeating in falsetto, but it never quite felt right. 10 re-writes later it metamorphosized into this huge post-grunge wall of sound.

Where do you tend to pull inspiration from?

Literally everywhere. There’s this great story about the Bee Gees driving over a bridge from Biscayne Bay to Miami. The rhythmic sound from the tires striking the bridge sections inspired them to write Jive Talkin, arguably their biggest hit. Whether we choose to hear it or not, we are surrounded by music, and there is an unlimited source of material to write about whenever you open your front door.

Who would you say has been your main musical influence?

Definitely the Muppets. In syndication I saw Alice Cooper, Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich, Julie Andrews, Johnny Cash, Dizzie Gillespie, Debbie Harry, Elton John, Lou Rawls, Diana Ross…and obviously Animal. Had no idea who any of these people were at the time, but they sang, danced, played and had a blast doing it… and I wanted to join in. Vocally I have to give props to Freddie Mercury and Chris Cornell for my rock voice, and George Michael and Elton John for my pop/soul styles. All powerful yet smooth as silk in their own ways. Today guys like Matt Bellamy and Thom Yorke continue to inspire me to improve.

Do you have any upcoming tour dates that you’d like to tell us about?

FoK is working on a summer tour as we speak. Dates and locations will be announced soon.

For someone who has yet to see you perform live, how would you describe your show?

It’s an ever evolving process but I think we perform with a lot of energy, and i make a point of connecting with our audience as often as possible. It’s not a faceless crowd to me, so i want them to sing and move with us; feel what i feel and really connect in every way possible.

What’s up next for Fall of Knowledge?

Aside from the upcoming tour, I’m working diligently to find partners who can assist with the marketing and funding aspects of the business. Creating exposure is a full time job and not really something one person can handle.

Canadian Beats is all about Canadian music, who are you current favourite Canadian bands/ artists?

It’s really hard to find time for music discovery these days but Power Out by Arcade Fire is one of my all time favs. Half Moon Run does some great things. Love Alabama Shakes… passion personified.  Anything with big sound and emotion resonates with me. Big fan of everything Ian Thornley does….and Rush. One of my 1st tapes as a wee little brat was a live Rush concert…huge sound…listened to it a million times.

Here at Canadian Beats, we like to include a portion of questions that may help your fans learn something new about you, so here goes:

What are you most looking forward to in 2016?

Finding a girlfriend would be nice. You know anyone?

What was the first album you ever bought and the first concert ever attended?

1st Album – not sure if this counts but i got my 1st record by trading a snack bag of bits and bites in grade 1 for a cracked .45 of Eye of the Tiger

1st Concert – maybe i was 10 yrs old, and my dad took the family up to the Catskills in NY one summer for the wknd. Saturday night there was a reunion show of old 60’s bands with the Turtles, Paul Revere and the Raiders, The Byrds and a few others.  Best show ever!

What is your favourite social media platform and why?

If I had to choose, probably FB. The concept of social media is brilliant and i love the ability to share in the lives of friends living worldwide, but I see too much anger, ignorance and overall human failure online to truly embrace it all. I highly recommend ‘unfriending’ whoever is feeding you the most negativity. You don’t realize it, but it makes a big difference to your overall mood

What is your favourite outdoor Winter activity?

Does heading indoors count as an activity? I used to be an avid GS skier, until i discovered the beauty of a crackling fire and spanish coffee in the chalet.

What is your go-to warm beverage on a cold day?

See above 🙂

What is one thing that your fans would be surprised to learn about you?

I’ve had 15 cars, and totaled 5 of them, but I’m actually a great driver….seriously

Last but not least, is there anything you’d like to say to the readers?

Work your ass off to find happiness! It’s the only thing worthy of your best effort….and support FoK!

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