Black Tiger Sex Machine on its Freaky Masks, Dark Sounds, and Love of Underground Music

2016 06 01 1131
If you occur to be attending Phoenix Comicon this weekend, its secure to say you are going to encounter geeks in masks. That being mentioned, there ere’s one group of costumed geeks who may stand proud of the group. After all, they will be those sporting robotic-looking black tiger masks.

We’re referring to the members of outlaw digital dance music trio Black Tiger Sex Machine, who’re scheduled to carry out at Monarch Theatre on Saturday night time and may simply wind up at Phoenix Comicon going down close by. 

“I believe we is likely to be making a particular look there through the day,” says BTSM’s Marc-André Chagnon.

For those that are unfamiliar with Black Tiger Sex Machine, they’re an EDM act is an digital music trio that favors dwell performances, tiger robotic helmets, darker electro types and visible performances. They’re additionally thought-about by some to be type of the black sheep of mainstream dance music for the time being.

According to Chagnon, BTSM contains a superhero-like backstory involving a trek into outer area and again once more. 

“We type of had this storyline … the place we had been like superheroes that had come again to earth to reserve it,” he says. 

Their extra earthbound backstory is simply as amusing. Chagnon says that the “intercourse machine” half of their moniker stems from a James Brown reference that got here up throughout their early days of sampling music. Around the identical time, one member of BTSM was making an attempt to finish issues with a woman, which additionally helped encourage the act’s title.

“We simply type of put these phrases collectively enjoying soccer on a Saturday afternoon,” says Chagnon. “It was truly one thing one of the opposite group members was texting to a different particular person to get rid of communication.”

BTSM roots return even additional as Changon and Patrick Barry met at age 5 (“At first we had been principally simply associates”). They met the third member of the group, Julien Maranda once they all had been in highschool.

“And then all of us began converging collectively in the direction of music on the identical time in our late teenagers, early twenties,” Changon says.

As is the case with most EDM acts of their childhood, all of them had mutual pursuits. “All of our associates had been getting extra into the electro motion [like] Justice and Boys Noize,” Changon says. “We would go to all of these occasions and actually turn out to be captivated, discover new music and DJs, and actually type of submerge ourselves in discovery.”

And what they found type of modified the whole lot.

“Me personally, and I do know the opposite guys really feel like this: once we began discovering blogs and all of this type of underground world of digital music — all of the distortion, the brand new bass traces that had been popping out with Crookers, Boys Noize and The Bloody Beetroots — that basically type of hit some extent with all of us,” Changon says.

Hard and heavy sounds of the darker selection aren’t the one factor that BTSM’s members share a mutual curiosity in, as Changon says that all of them “actually just like the sci-fi world however [also] actually just like the darkish aspect of music.”


Both issue into BTSM, which has been performing as a collective for seven years, and its music, as does the aesthetics of obscure and underground music they found.

“I believe it actually comes again to once we found digital music it was such a dope interval for us. There was one thing new each week. It was all about music discovery,” Changon says. “Our aspect of electro, orchestral and darkish electro, hasn’t shined in the primary mild since just like the late 2000s. So as we had been constructing, followers had been actually changing into tremendous followers.”

BTSM has created a cult-like following, as evidenced by the actual fact its fanbase is known as the “BTSM Church.” It was going to be the title of their debut LP till they consulted with their fanbase, who voiced their assist for the album’s eventual title, Welcome to Our Church.

“We have a core group of followers which can be so devoted, that the time period church type of simply began coming round,” Changon says.

The tiger masks they put on throughout dwell gigs didn’t come into existence till about three years in the past, after the group began going full pressure with their music careers and they randomly met a designer at a celebration in Montreal.

“We all the time wished to have a really robust visible id,” Changon says. “Helmets add to the visible expertise of the dwell performances.”

Unlike different “press play” DJs who go off prerecorded units, BTSM’s performances are partially dwell in nature.

“It’s fairly cool, it provides us loads of flexibility and it stays very dynamic and quick,” Changon says. “But additionally there’s extra artistry and work behind it.”

Their dwell performances are arrange between three stations: Maranda runs the grasp tempo, sound and vocal samples and vocal loops. In the center Chagnon is the “architect” of the who operation.

“I’m doing a hybrid of dwell construction and DJing,” he says. “So typically I’ll be doing extra fast-paced, DJ transitions to maintain the power up. Then typically I’m simply sending the blokes the construction of the tune so as to add extra dwell parts on high of it. Then, on the fitting, Patrick is operating a two-synth that he’s operating by way of the mixer.”

The trio has solely been touring America for six months and beforehand performed at Phoenix Lights in April. As for tonight’s efficiency on the Monarch, Changon says they plan to test-out a number of of 4 to seven new singles anticipated to drop all through the rest of the 12 months.

“The good present for us is sort of a present the place individuals truly get pleasure from it as a lot as a present the place individuals know all of the songs and they’re all singing. But they don’t truly know the music. They’re simply vibing with the present, and the power is so current, and we’re in a position to keep them within the area the place they’re actually excited concerning the subsequent tune, and they’re actually having fun with how the following tune flows collectively, how the present progresses,” Changon says. “Obviously now we’re including extra and extra visuals, the helmets are enhancing. It’s all about creating this type of like trance, however not within the musical sense. Just a trance over the entire present and fluidity between genres and textures. That’s probably the most fascinating and brings probably the most power out of everybody.”                                                                              

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