Strawberry Spotlight is a weekly feature on Strawberry Tongue Radio. Hosted by Lady Audio, she chats with the bands you hear, right here, on Strawberry Tongue. In this edition, Lady Audio chats with crunchy electronic wiz Balázs Söptei from I, Symptom.
This is a transcription of that interview which airs December 21, 2016, 1:00 EST, only on Strawberry Tongue Radio. You can also catch the re-broadcast of this show on Saturday and Sunday at 1:00pm EST. Be sure to tune in!
Lady Audio: Hey everyone and welcome to Strawberry Spotlight. Today’s guest is Balázs Söptei, also known as, I, Symptom. Thank you for joining me how are you?
Balázs: Hello! I’m feeling great!
Lady Audio: My first question is what attracted you to the realm of music?
Balázs: Well, I fell in love with music as a child and I remember when I was, I don’t know five or six years old, I listened to these children songs and I just played them in my head over and over. That was the first step and then, later on, I fell in love with the sound of the guitar. When I was 13 years old, that was the time when I fell in love with the sound of the guitar the distorted guitar a few years later I became of rock and roll addict and I am still a rock and roll addict. I cannot identify a single point but it was a continuous attraction.
Lady Audio: What do you like most about music?
Balázs: Well I like that it keeps me alive! It’s all over my thoughts and my feelings. So when I make some noise or when I hear some noise, by which I mean music, of course, I hear something or create something that moves my emotions and my thoughts. So I think through music in an abstract way feelings that cannot be found in any other way for me.
Lady Audio: Is there anything about music that you don’t like?
Balázs: Well I don’t like… how should I be politically correct… I don’t like shitty music I don’t like the cheesy music. I don’t know the exact phrase but the Germans say kitschig, or something like that. In English kitschy. It’s supposed to be beautiful but it isn’t very beautiful. It’s just a preconception of being beautiful. It’s disgusting so I don’t like that type of music
Lady Audio: Can you describe your most frustrating experience in the studio when your recording?
Balázs: Oh yeah yeah yeah! My most frustrating experience is when I record something and I play it to myself what I have recorded and I feel I messed up the recording. It is not right in a way. The Rhythm or it’s not clean or something like that and it’s like psychological. I always hear some errors in my music when I play it to myself. Maybe they’re not there, but sometimes I cannot distinguish between a real error and a psychological error or what I hear as an error.
Lady Audio: Can you describe your most wonderful experience in the studio?
Balázs: Well, my most wonderful experience is when I write and record a song at the same time. So I begin to record with a basic idea and then I record some ideas over and over. At the end, it becomes a song from just a stem of the idea.
Lady Audio: I really like your new song, Am I Nobody, will you talk about it?
Balázs: Yeah sure, of course. So in some part, it’s a philosophical… it’s a reflection, and it rhymes to an older song…
[Play Am I Nobody]
Balázs: …it’s not my song but a song of Marilyn Manson, The Nobodies, which you know we are nobodies we want to be somebodys, but when we are dead… I hope I cited the chorus well!
Lady Audio: Another song I really like is Good Guys Kill for Love. What’s the story behind that song?
Balázs: Well, it’s actually… it’s a parody of these gangster wannabe musicians that are playing… that have an image of a wise guy, and they say that they are awesome because they kill people. And they hurt people and they make a lot of money and they wear dollar necklaces and some… something like that. And I even wanted to mimic the vocals in such songs, but I don’t have the physical ability to do that.
[Play Good Guys Kill for Love]
Balázs: …so it became like that. But the lyrics are still… I wrote them in a way that I wanted to.
Lady Audio: What new projects are you working on now?
Balázs: Oh! I have a lot of songs ready and waiting for publication. And I also have some video material waiting for publication. And they are all going to be part of the new album or not. It depends on how the fans and the audience react. So I put them online and each song has a form, a survey form, in which listeners or viewers can like the song. And if it gets a good rating, it goes to the new album.
Lady Audio: Cool! And now for a scenario. It’s late in the afternoon, the shadows are long, the air is silent and you’re standing in a beautiful castle which is your home. You are completely alone and happy. What is something that you only do when you are at home alone in your Castle just being yourself?
Balázs: Home alone in my castle. Okay, that’s a tricky question. I wasn’t prepared for that! I’m trying to imagine it, so, of course, when I’m home alone, I grab my guitar and go to a quest and try to play and play and create some noise. Because when I’m alone it’s the time when I can have adventures with sounds and with my guitar, of course, and sometimes I imagine visuals to the sounds that I’m playing.
Lady Audio: That’s cool! And one more question, what is your favorite flower?
Balázs: Well, another tricky question that wasn’t prepared for that either! I like metaphorical flowers. You know, metaphorical flowers. My beloved wife is my favorite flower, actually. And if you want me to name a flower, an actual flower, not a metaphorical one, it would be a rose.
Lady Audio: Aw, I love roses too. Where can people go to listen to and to purchase your music?
Balázs: Well, listening, you can listen at my BandCamp page or my SoundCloud. But I am now stopping the purchasing function at BandCamp, and I’m going to migrate that function to my home page which is not ready yet, but I am planning to launch it this year. At the end of this year which is near so, I have a lot of things to do! I have to build my own home page and it will be the place for purchasing. But on CD Baby there is another album, Handmade Love, it can be purchased there.
Lady Audio: Okay, I’ll get the links to that and post it in the show notes.
Balázs: Okay, thank you.
Lady Audio: Thank you so much for joining me today Balázs, I really appreciate it.
Balázs: Anytime. Thank you for the opportunity.
Strawberry Tongue would like to thank I, Symptom for spending time to chat with Lady Audio. Learn more about this artist at the links below: