Artist Spotlight

Chris Corner of IAMX

Chris Corner of IAMX

| Interview by Daniel Codella conducted on February 25, 2011.

IAMX is the brainchild and alter-ego of Chris Corner (formerly of the Sneaker Pimps). Combining live instrumentation with electronic sounds, IAMX's sound is lush and intoxicating. Chris' raw and passionate vocals about life, death, love, and religion stir up both controversy and loving adoration from listeners around the globe. Chris took time out from his busy rehearsals to let us know more about his newest masterpiece, the forthcoming "Volatile Times." DrumCore has played a big part in the percussion of the album, and Chris has taken his produtions to a new level of sonic intricacies. While no official US release date has been set at this time, you can preorder the album now directly at Samples of the entire album can be heard here. Learn more in the interview bellow:

You have a unique sound that melds many genres, what are your biggest influences?

As I am also the producer I have the horrible disease of not hearing music subjectively anymore. Not hearing with a distance. Its a disease for life and changed the way I make art. There was a point when I felt I had technically and culturally learnt enough to be what I wanted to be in music and couldn't hear the poison of commercially constructed pop anymore. The rest was down to isolated self indulgence. At that point I switched of to the world. If you spend enough time alone and you have reasonable talent and a strong drive something somewhere along the line will come out that is unique. I think that is what happened with IAMX. It's totally out of date and always will be. As a result these days my main influences are actually not in music. I take great inspiration from films, science, philosophy and art, At the moment I have immersed myself in the films of Fellini. There is always a very important musical score that combines with the image to make exceptional art. Funny, thought provoking, hopeful. Real and messy like life. If I listen to music it is usually something far from contemporary. Often classical. Chopin is a hero of mine.

How would you say your forthcoming album, "Volatile Times" differs from your previous work?

It is a wake up call. Probably the most uncompromising and challenging IAMX record. I am so sick of the plastic bullshit everywhere in the world. We are so fucking lost. This record is generally about that with a dash of socio-political and anti religious rage thrown in for good measure. On many levels I was also so bored of myself in the studio I took the opportunity to sonically shake things up. At every point that I felt I was repeating myself I changed direction. Almost to the point of being annoying. Breaking up song structures, switching instruments, adding complicated over bearing effects. Musically it is the closest to my heart. I spent a lot of time experimenting with new tools and working hard to create new vocal and drum sounds. This is the process I most love about what I do. It was also the first IAMX record that I actually took some advice on. Usually I am a paranoid control freak but a friend from London who I worked with in the past, a great British producer Jim Abbiss, came over to Berlin gave me a very wise end of record boost that helped me get over the normal tedious self doubt and complete it.

Has your studio and instrumentation evolved from album to album?

Not really. I just think my perception of quality has developed and my confidence in doing things the wrong way has strengthened . I have always been a grimy indie producer. I never had respect for traditional methods or the general rules of studio etiquette and I was just never patient enough to work for others.. I love using new technology but not if it slows me down. I have friends that are trapped by their obsession with the technology, distracted too much to actually be creative. Its important for me to keep it simple. That's why the tools have to be powerful and effective. I still make the records in a small room with mainly just me, a selection instruments, lots of red wine and a computer.

I hear you've been working with DrumCore. Did you use DrumCore on this new album?

I did. I was genuinely surprised and it is one of those tools I just mentioned. I am a drum snob and I was also skeptical to try new software during the recording process but it slipped into my setup easily. The navigation and flexibility was great but didn't interest me as much as the sounds. I found them expansive, expressive and of beautiful quality. Deep and full of attitude.

Do you think DrumCore helps with the writing process?

As yet I didn't get into the idea of using it to write with so I have no comment on that. My concept of drum programming is a little unusual too so it may take me time to adapt to the pattern and arrangement facility of the software.

Do you have any plans to tour the US this year?

Absolutely. I miss that insane place. As we are still an independent project the difficulty is always getting the funding to cover costs to get across the Atlantic. At the moment I know management are trying hard to secure a decent distribution deal to get the record out. Its always amazing to play there. Particularly LA. I am considering relocating to the west coast during the hard Berlin winter months.

What can people expect to see at a live IAMX show?

Chaos, sweat, sex, emotion, melody, glamour.

Where can users hear more of your music?

You can explore the IAMX world and get the music here: and

"I am a drum snob and I was also skeptical to try new software during the recording process but it (DrumCore) slipped into my setup easily. The navigation and flexibility was great but didn't interest me as much as the sounds. I found them expansive, expressive and of beautiful quality. Deep and full of attitude."

Chris Corner of IAMX

Check out IAMX's latest album "The Unified Field":

Anthony uses the following Sonoma Wire Works products:

"DrumCore is so handy and so very easy to use! It's very close to having a live drummer with you."

Learn more about DrumCore
Anthony Gonzalez of M83

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Trey Anastasio of Phish

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Jordan Rudess of Dream Theater

"RiffWorks is an incredible tool to get songs done stupid fast!"

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Johnny "Juice" Rosado of Public Enemy