Interview With Mick Michaels (Corners of Sanctuary)
Hey Mick, thank you for joining us today. How are you?
Hello Aaron! Thanks so much for talking with me today. Greatly appreciate it. I’m doing very well, thank you!
Tell us a bit about your new album, Blood and Steel: Volume One, what was writing and recording for this album like?
Corners of Sanctuary just released their latest EP, Blood and Steel: Volume One, on RFL Records. This EP commemorates the band’s 10th anniversary in 2021. We are excited about this release...for us, this is somewhat darker and a bit grittier for what some fans have come to expect from COS. However, we did not set out to go darker or grittier; it just evolved that way...which is pretty cool. The music dictates the path it wants to take and as a songwriter, there is some amount of magic in that process. ‘Cause in the end, it’s all about the music. We plan to release a volume two sometime this summer.
Given the current state of the world, did it poise any issues towards the completion of the album?
Not so much. By this stage in the game we have gotten a handle on how to go about “business as usual” in this new norm. For the most part and like always, a lot of it comes down to scheduling. We have been fortunate to keep what we do moving forward during all this...and what better time to write and record new music then now? So we had decided to take full advantage of it and do as much as we could and as often as we could.
Of course the current state of things isn't ideal, have you started to plan for what comes next once the world starts opening up again?
Absolutely. However, the trick is to be flexible because things can change in an instant as we saw with 2020... nothing is forever. We are keeping all lines of communication open so that when things do open up we will be able to move forward without much delay. We are looking towards 2022 already... we have started works on a new full length album which we would like to have ready to release next year and of course getting back out on the road and performing.
Tell us a bit about yourself as a musician, who influences you?
As a guitar player I was influences first by my older brother who also plays guitar. Of course being both a Kiss fan and a Judas Priest fan, Ace Frehley, K.K. Downing and Glenn Tipton have been major influences on me. Other guitar players include Jake E Lee, John Sykes and Criss Oliva.
As a song writer I have been influenced by the aforementioned players but also from artists like Neil Diamond, Barry Gibb, the Beatles, Freddy Mercury, Rob Halford....the list really goes on. As I have gotten older, I have found inspiration and influence from everything from my family, to a good meal, to a cool TV show or movie as well as from just sitting in nature. It’s just a matter of perspective and being open to it in my opinion.
Who is your biggest bucketing band you've shared the stage with? Who would you love to share the stage with next?
For me it was opening for UDO and Stryper, I’m big fans of these guys. So it was amazing to have such an opportunity it goes beyond words.
Definitely would love the opportunity to open for Judas Priest or Kiss, both of these bands have had such an impact on me as a fan and as a player that it would be monumental to have that chance!
What are some of the main themes behind the new album? What story are you trying to convey?
We often write about battle and war and how it affects people. We also write a lot about self empowerment and overcoming challenges. There really isn’t a story per se with Blood and Steel but more so a sentiment of never giving up and making the best of what you have today because tomorrow may never come. The EP is a sort of a tribute to two long time friends and former band mates we lost over the last year.
Last but not least, is there any message you would like to share with your fans?
We just want to thank everyone for all their support over the last 10 years...we are so grateful and appreciate it immensely. But stay tuned, there is a lot more coming!
We want everyone to be safe and stay strong...we are getting through this together. Corners of Sanctuary looks forward to seeing everyone soon!
Thank you so much for your time! Corners of Sanctuary's new EP Blood and Steel: Volume One is available now, and can be picked up alongside the bands other releases on their website.