Lost In The Void : Andi Nixon Talks Deathcount In Silicon Valley And New Music

Grief envelopes you. It holds you in its arms and doesn’t want to let go. It’s not a matter of getting away from it, but walking through it and letting it have it’s way with you. Until you come out the other side of it creating art and moving on can seem to be an impossible task. Musician Andi Nixon lost his girlfriend to cancer and found himself in a whirlwind of loss and grief. He’d released his debut album as Deathcount In Silicon Valley titled Hex Void with Burning Witches Records in 2017, but then experienced this immense loss in 2018. Since then he’s been working and dealing with that insurmountable hole left by tragedy.

Music and writing has always been in the peripheral, but that desire to create still not quite ignited until now. Andrew Crawshaw of SFI Records reached out to Andi about the possibility of releasing an album with his new label, which ended up being the catalyst for Nixon to plug in and get creating once again with the great circuital hum.

Deathcount In Silicon Valley is now readying two new albums with SFI, one that will be up for preorder today, another for 2022. I spoke to Andi earlier this year about his music, his inspirations, and his writing process.

J Hubner: Where did you grow up Andi?

Andi Nixon: Firstly, Thank you for taking the time to interview me. It’s pretty weird knowing there are folks on the otherside of the spectrum who dig my music.

J. Hubner: No problem at all, man. Love your work.

Andi Nixon: So……I grew up in a small town in Cornwall called Torpoint, At the bottom of England. Pretty Idyllic and surrounded by Beaches and lush Countryside. A haven for Traveller culture which would play a huge roll in my up and coming years.

J Hubner: Was music a big part of your childhood? If so, what were some early influences on you?

Andi Nixon: Yeah huge! I was turned on to music at an early age through my stepdad and best mates older brother. Classic metal to start. My first obsession was Iron Maiden then that quickly progressed to Thrash. Anthrax, Metallica and Sepultura were early obsessions. Then as music progressed pretty quickly through the early 90’s i got into death metal, industrial and grunge/alternative rock. After I left school and started experimenting with psychedelics and weed, then came along space rock. Hawkwind, Ozric Tentacles and Terminal Cheesecake to name a few.

That naturally led into the burgeoning techno/trance scene that was blossoming in the UK underground throughout the nineties. By 18 I had dreads down to my arse and was preaching the gospel of Timothy Leary. I bought my first synthesizers, A Nord Lead 3 and a Korg MS2000 and spent the next 10 years writing Goa Trance and started playing all over the UK and Europe.

J. Hubner: You’re a metal kid growing up in the UK. What was the push and inspiration for you to dive into electronic and synth music?

Andi Nixon: I got into electronic music via space rock when I went down the Trance/Techno route around 1995. But veered off back into Metal and more guitar based stuff late 2000’s. Around 2011 I was playing Bass/Synth and effects in a post metal band called Cyclopian. Heavily influenced by Neurosis, Isis and Cult of Luna. After we broke up I met a good friend and we bonded over the band Emeralds. Ciaran Mackle (Ashcircle) and I started these stoned synth jams every weekend and eventually started putting out stuff under the name Fragments of Space Hex. We had a shared love for extended synth drones and a mutual passion for bands like Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze and Kosmiche music.

J Hubner: How did Deathcount In Silicon Valley come about?

Andi Nixon: While working with Ciaran on Fragments of Space Hex I started working on my own stuff and eventually put out 2 tapes on Extreme Ultimate (Matt from Necro Deathmorts label) Acheron and Consec. Consec being a tribute to one of my favourite movies Scanners.

J Hubner: How did your debut Hex Void come about?

Andi Nixon: Hex Void came about from working at this cool independant Cinema in London called the Prince Charles Cinema. They played old school classic Sci-fi/Horror and 80’s movies and would have John Carpenter all nighters and such. I started doing live synth jams to silent movies, Faust, Nosferatu and Man with a movie camera. A lot of Hex Void stems from those jams.

J Hubner: How did you get involved with Burning Witches Records?

Andi Nixon: I can’t quite remember. They contacted me about releasing a tape and I gladly took them up on the offer. They were super nice and it turned out great. Even getting into Electronic Sound magazines top 30 albums of that year. I was pretty stoked with the response. And they introduced me to the awesome artwork of Hauntlove who is doing artwork for the new tape on SFI.

J Hubner: Speaking of SFI, you have two new releases coming out with SFI Records this year. First is Vampyrotuthis Infernalis, and then The Abysall Zone. First off, how did you get connected with Andrew and SFI?

Andi Nixon: Back in January Andrew contacted me about releasing something for SFI and very kindly expressed his like for Hex Void. It was pretty weird to think there were dudes all the way over in Seattle who dug my stuff. At the time I was going through a grieving process and not really writing much. It was just the bump I needed to get back into writing again. Thank you Andrew.

J Hubner: It’s been a long three years for you.

Andi Nixon: As mentioned above, I was and still am going through a grieving process after losing my girlfriend to cancer. Around that time iIwas contacted by Antoni Maiovvi about putting out a tape on his new Techno label Drift Music. ‘Split Hemisphere Dissolver’ under my own name. A collection of songs written while I was trying to deal with what was happening. That was the last thing released. I didn’t really get back into the studio properly for a few years.

J Hubner: What is your creative process like?

Andi Nixon: To be honest for me it’s about being in the zone. I don’t really sit down and say I’m gonna write something in this style or for that scene. It comes from those early days as Fragments, Having a smoke drinking some wine and letting the Synths help you take off!

J Hubner: You only have five albums to listen to for the rest of your life. What are they?

Andi Nixon: Oh man! The eternal question. Can I name 7? I’m gonna name 7!! To cover the musical bases if I were to be trapped in this weird bubble of only 3/5 albums for the rest of this existence. By the way what sort of cosmic joker would put this horrendous and cruel spell on any music lover?

Ok, in no particular order: 1.Terminal Cheesecake – King Of All Spaceheads, 2.Hawkwind – Warrior At The Edge Of Time, 3.Ministry – The Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste, 4.Monster Magnet – Tab 25, 5.Eat Static – Abduction, 6.Butthole Surfers – The Brown Album, 7.Devo – Q Are We Not Men.

J Hubner: Two albums on the way. What’s next for Andi and Deathcount In Silicon Valley?

Andi Nixon: It’s looking like the second release will be next year now.
But I guess more music. Once I’m done with this new Deathcount stuff, I’ll be writing some more beat driven techno-ish vibes. Then at some point I’d like to do a sequel to Hex Void and find out what happened to the astronaut. As he’s been left dying and being reborn over and over for an eternity now. Might be nice to help him out. Cosmically!

Deathcount In Silicon Valley’sVampyrotuthis Infernalis’ will be up for preorder later today over at SFI Recordings. Check with them here later today.

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