Best known by Emilie Autumn – Emilie Autumn Liddel is a California local and tonight she is back home setting her domain at the infamous El Rey Theater but before her pit stop she decided to have a spot of tea with me to discuss all that she’s been up to since her 2006 full-length “Opheliac”. She says that her world The Asylum has taken its course for the better with its assortment of “ALL NEW” attractions from an upcoming musical to her all new full-length “Fight Like A Girl” set to be released very soon and her own personal fight with her own mentality that engulfed her inner being of being human. You can check out the audio portion beginning with PART 1 HERE.
1. So how is the tour currently going?
Emilie: The touring is amazing it’s so much crazier and epic than I thought. It’s just been really amazing and we’ve been debuting new stuff from acts, to songs and even material. Like right now we’re pulling up to the El Rey Theater in Los Angeles and we’re just about ready to let it all go and everybody’s just been incredible.
I think the most interesting experience has been that I haven’t released the new record yet, because I wanted to treat this more like a Broadway show which is what it’s slowly becoming. Like you know if you go to a show that you don’t go in knowing the music or knowing the words and being able to sing along that’s not the point you go to see the show and totally experience it for what it is. Then maybe after a day or so you’d buy the soundtrack.
That’s what I wanted to hear and have people show up knowing of course the words to the old songs that a band would normally include on their set but to have the new material that nobody would ever expect to hear or not have any fucking idea then hit them it just like the whole world has changed. But of course that can only happen on the first night because thanks to YouTube pretty much all of the new material has been exposed by that next day.
Now the people know all of the words so now we’re back to where we started. But that’s what makes it so beautiful in its own way because now it’s going back to singing along with all of the new music that’s not even out yet. It’s just been amazing and keeps getting better every day.
2. What can you tell me about your upcoming album “Fight Like A Girl”?
Emilie: Yes what I can tell you are a couple of things…
As you can figure out from what I just mentioned is definitely that The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls my book in which this new tour is based on everything I do and on those books because this is the bible of the Asylum world and me. So this is very literal and it actually starts on a particular scene called “The Tear Party Massacre” and it begins with the moment that all of these girls in this Victorian Insane Asylum through some really incredible circumstances finally after years of torture and abuse in the place, find that they have the power to actually unlock the main cell along with the other ones and free themselves.
Of course they are still locked in that building with all of these serial killer doctors but there out of their cells. So that moment is when everything starts and that gate of that beautiful moment is opened and they come to realize that “Oh my god we are out so now what do we do?” So from there that’s where the chapter starts and where the book, show, and record all start off so you begin with the start of that massacre which is when the girls get free and they decide that “Ok now we got to takedown everybody” so there is a thousand of us and fifty of them everything is in our favor and we team up and we just divide and conquer. So they pretty much just floor everybody in there so the goal is to take back the asylum and they do but it begins with this battle cry called “It’s Time for Tea” and they just go and fight and do this thing and it sorta becomes like a tribe after that. Like ya know being locked up with nothing no civilization or anything they just become this gorgeous and wild creatures that ban together.
So that’s what happens on the record it begins with all of that and then by the third song you’re in a flash back of how the very beginning and how it all started and got to that point and time ya know? Which has you end up returning to where it all started originally, so you completed the fight, had won, and then end with the most important question of all which is “Where do we go from here?” That of course has an answer of not having an answer at all because there isn’t one. It’s simply just one foot in front of the other foot so that it becomes this chanting march that ends the record and the show so as you can tell is part of the soundtrack to the musical that it is becoming for real because I give it two years and it’ll be on Broadway, because that is what is going to happen let me tell you.
It’s just really part of that and you can really tell by listening to it, it’s not like anything you’ve ever heard before it’s epic and cinematic and huge and doesn’t follow any type of rock form what so ever which I think is the best part.
You can look forward to all of that on the album anyway so yeah it’s going to be fun.
3. Where are you recording the album and where in the recording process are you and who is producing the album?
Emilie: Me, Me, and me! So everything is ya know done completely by myself this whole way the DYI process which is why it means what it does there are no other outside influences it is sincere. The album itself was recorded in my own studio called “The Cell’ which is inside the Asylum itself, so that’s all done by me. So yeah everything was done that way and I did it all myself and then it is set and ready to go but I’m just not ready to release it just yet bit it will be incredibly soon, I just can’t say when.
4. How would you describe the overall sound of the new album? How does it compare to your last release?
Emilie: I would say that it is different in some way with the approach but being very literal about the theme but if you had read the book then it would make a lot more sense. But of course you hear this first and then read the book it’s really going to hit home because you already know part of the story the words and it’s just very much what the book was meant to be like a screenplay ya know? Musically of course there are similarities because it’s all me and it’s coming from source.
But with the song writing it was pretty much about setting the stage literally for this asylum or this universal world in letting people know about it and what’s going on with it. So introducing myself because I was pretty much unknown to begin with and my character and others I’ve created and me personally as my own character setting up this story and that needed to be done so we could take this to the next level to where it’s at now.
What is interesting though, is that in the musical of this which is being put together some songs on the Opheliac album are and were meant to be a part of this and are in the musical as well because they never left to begin with ya know? So you have themes that repeat themselves and have different lyrics and genres it all mixes in together. So all of the music I’ve ever done can be put together like “The Art of Suicide” is going to be a good one for this project. Nothing is really gone or out lived it just comes back one way or another in a better or greater aspect of these characters or this show for that matter.
5. Are you using any new instrumentation you’ve never used in the recording process before?
Emilie: Yes absolutely like I’m using winds, brass, harps, there’s a big solo in there it’s just an effort to make it sound like a movie score having more strings and other styles of strings that I’ve previously used. But it goes into an epic brass section like a Jurassic Park scene or style. It’s just crazy especially when it’s done on stage it’s just amazing. I went and developed my own drum set so that develops its own sound that’s completely different than anything else I’ve ever created before.
6. Why such a long gap in between albums?
Emilie: For a couple of reasons….
1. Not everybody realizes it but I’ve actually put out three EPs, all of which were album length, a double album, solo violin record, and wrote a massive autobiographical fantasy novel during that time. So I’ve been a bit busy with creating all sorts of things during that time. It’s also very important that people had enough time to get a hold of those items and have a chance to read and process this book, before the next real development came out. So that was able to happen and it’s made a big difference with people’s understanding of the new and upcoming material. So that was definitely enough to wait upon and actually the fact that I’ve been putting out things this whole time they just haven’t been publicized or promoted as much as Opheliac was.
7. When did you start writing for this album? How was the songwriting process different/similar to previous albums?
Emilie: It actually has in a way that I haven’t actually talked to anybody about. As far as how long it’s been going on since Opheliac was released even before then. Definitely parts of it are being developed for the last few years and there are others that are very secretive and are going on it. But the song writing process has changed and it’s all changed due to my last changes that I’ve done unmediated.
So when it comes to bi-polar, anxiety, whatever it takes you to this whole another world of creativity that is never ending. It is a very dangerous thing but you just write constantly and you tear apart of toilet paper or just write on everything until the ceiling’s are filled up and you just don’t sleep or eat It’s not that that’s a great process but that is where almost everything that I’ve done came from.
Now that I am properly medicated and I’m not endanger of jumping out a window every five seconds Is good so I had to relearn to visit that same place where everything came from and I did but it took a bit of a while to fully feel like I can access in that possible crazy way and just with all of that self-self and discovery and meditating and now I can access that place both medicated and not.
8. What do you do when you deal with these issues or anxiety or a panic attack?
Emilie: To be honest I just have a cup of tea. Which is why everything I do is based on that, like “The Mad Tea Party” and so forth it’s just a really 24 hour part of me. Freely I’ve come to use and abuse tea like one would do with alcohol it’s just the effects are a lot nicer. But that’s where and where I go too with all emotional states. Are those various types of teas organic, etc. and that’s what it represents to me a very peaceful place of well being if you will.
9. Your signature hairstyle is normally red did you change it up this time?
Emilie: I do, but it’s been changing over the course of the last few years, going from bright red to red and pink striped to pink, then lighter pink, and finally at this moment to platinum blond. Going back to blond, which was my natural hair color growing up, was certainly not expected, and in fact was only done because of a film role I’d accepted, playing “The Painted Doll” in Darren Bousman and Terrence Zdunich’s “The Devil’s Carnival.” That said, the gradual lightening of the hair over the last while must indicate something subconscious, perhaps having to do with my gaining control over my life and mental health, coming into a lighter, more hopeful place where I can find the humor in all of it and now help others.
10. What do you have planned for Valentine’s Day?
Emilie: Well, it certainly wasn’t to be lying in a bed in Florida recuperating from a massive illness. I was supposed to be on stage, but simply couldn’t do it. It broke my heart to leave Plague Rats disappointed.
11. Speaking of “love” fans have know are you single, engaged or married?
Emilie: Anyone who’s seen the show, whether live or on YouTube is well aware that I’m in a very serious relationship with the Bloody Crumpets. The real show is in the back of the tour bus!
12. You probably receive a ton of fan mail do you really read all of it?
Emilie: Of course!
13. What about all of the gifts that you’ve gotten from fans do you keep all of them and have you had any time replying back to any?
Emilie: I receive many beautiful and generous gifts from Plague Rats all over the world, and I do my very best to reply to as many as I can, though very often by the time the gift gets to me it’s been opened and I have no return address. In that case I sit with it for a moment and send my thoughts and energy out to the person who sent it to me.
14. For those who may have not heard of Emilie Autumn how would you go about promoting yourself and say to them?
Emilie: I simply call myself glam-rock burlesque these days – it seems an interesting enough pairing of words to give people an idea that this is something a bit different.