INTERVIEW with INANIMATE EXISTENCE


Today we got to speak with Cameron Porras, the lead vocalist and guitarist from California’s technical/progressive death metal band Inanimate Existence!

MPM: Hello Cameron, my pleasure in doing this interview and it’s such a honor to be speaking with you today. Those don’t know who you are and your contributions, could you introduce yourself to what you do for the band?

IE: I play guitar and do vocals for the band as well as being a founding member.

MPM: Inanimate Existence’s been around since 2011 and have released six incredibly crafted albums that not only are marvelous and artistic but every record is diverse and well written. Since you joined the band, did you had any pressure building up into doing vocals well as doing guitars or were you just finding your footing and way to be the musician you are today?

IE: On our first album I actually recorded the vocals but only played acoustic guitar. After that I switched to only guitar for awhile so when we needed a vocalist again it seemed easiest to just have me do them again.

MPM: The Masquerade is the latest chapter from Inanimate Existence and is considered to be the third full-length of you doing vocals and honestly I think this record in particular is your most ambitious and versatile album to date. Would you say this album is a new chapter into Inanimate Existence’s career?

IE: I would say all of our albums are a new chapter in their own way. We really try to give ourselves just enough time gain new influences and goals so each album has its own identity.

MPM: The band joined The Artisan Era around the time of 2017’s Underneath A Melting Sky which reminded me a lot of the debut full-length recording of Liberation Through Healing. Five years later, The Masquerade was released and I would consider this to be one of the best death metal albums of 2022. Was this record in particular a difficult approach into writing compared to past Inanimate Existence records or was this a comfortable gesture knowing you’ve experienced something like this before?

IE: In some ways it was very natural to get the songs started but this time around we spent a lot of extra time tweaking things and trying to perfect each song.

MPM: The artwork for The Masquerade was done by Mark Erskine who’s also heavily responsible for being in the symphonic black/death metal outfit Temple Of Demigod. What was it like working with him to match the album’s lyrical themes and narrative?

IE: When we contacted Mark we only had a very rough version of the story a d gave him a few details to work with. When the art was done I actually took little bits that mark added into the art and added them.into the story to make it fit even more.

MPM: Going back to The Masquerade, this album to me not only is traditional Inanimate Existence at its finest but I really appreciate the compositional work, the detail, lyrical content and your intelligence songwriting to portray lyrics discussing human struggles, spirituality, philosophy and many more subject matters. What inspired you to do these type of lyrical ideologies and would you say this album is a conceptual record or do you think the listener should analyze the lyrics and go from there?

IE: This album is definitely very conceptual and a full story much like underneath a Melting Sky and calling from a dream. I do try and keep things a little vague so that each individual can tie in their own life experiences.

MPM: Do you have a favorite Inanimate Existence album or songs you can resonate from either performing live on stage or connect with the fans going by with the soundscapes of the music itself?

IE: For me once an album is done I kind of try to forget about it in order to focus on the future goals and direction of our next efforts. It’s really hard for me to choose a favorite because of that, I just see each album as a timestamp of where I was at that point in time.

MPM: Since Inanimate Existence joined The Artisan Era, how’s the chemistry been being on a huge scale of many plethora bands such as Arkaik, Inferi, Warforged, Enfold Darkness and many more?

IE: It’s really a huge honor and still very unreal to me. There are so many great musicians on this roster and it’s crazy to me that we are held in a similar regard as all these great bands but I am super grateful. Especially for Malcolm and Mike who put in so much work to help lift up bands. They’re really doing a great thing for the death metal scene.

MPM: Since you primarily do vocals, who would you say has been your biggest inspiration in wanting to be a vocalist?

IE: It’s really just my earliest influences which would be cannibal corpse, dying fetus, and Nile. I’ve been doing it for for awhile and after hearing my own recordings I try to hone in little details but I also try not to take influence from newer bands. This is why we tend to have an old school vocal style.

MPM: With many live shows returning to the forefront, do you have a pre-stage ritual set up to warm up your vocal techniques or do you just do your absolute best to put out a great show for the fans?

IE: I always tend to get a sore throat on tour so my ritual is usually honey and hot tea before the set and trying not to ware my voice down throughout the day before hand

MPM: When not doing tours, what are some of your favorite hobbies to past the time that your fans don’t know about you personally?

IE: I am a big video gamer and probably spend a little too much time on that. More recently I’ve really been into dirtbiking and snowboarding too.

MPM: If Inanimate Existence were to the create the ultimate dream lineup tour of past and current bands of your choosing who would you like to bring on tour?

IE: For me the ultimate tour would be the Artisan Era tour. I love so many of the bands on this label on not only a musical level but personally too. Inferi, Warforged, flub, arkaik, singularity, aethereus, devils of Loudon. I know that’s alot but I dream big lol.

MPM: What’s your stance on the current era of extreme metal today than it was decades ago?

IE: I think that since recording music is now so accessible to everyone, music in general is exponentially better than ever but also there’s so much of it that it’s hard to sift through and find the goods.

MPM: 2022 had great albums from the latest releases from Immolation, Venom Prison, Blood Incantation, Temple Of Void and many more. What albums are you most excited for in the upcoming months?

IE: Warforged is the only album that matters ❤️

MPM: If you were to pick a choice between buying physical medias of music or digital downloads/ streaming, what would be your preferred method and why should it be important for people to keep music alive much as they’re able to?

IE: Personally I think physical is the way to go as a collector. The digital project is always online for free but with the physical product it really is more of a cohesive bit of art that you can hold and read through.

MPM: Before we wrap up this interview I would like to say thank you for your time and approval into doing this and I hope to see you guys at a live event in the distant future. Any words you like to add to your fans reading this interview or self promote The Masquerade or future shows to be announced?

IE: We don’t have any shows finalized but we are working toward getting things going again. The last few years have been rough but we will for sure push through and tour again. Hopefully sooner than later!

 

 

 

Interview by Jake Butler


 

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