23 September 2023

IAMX – 05-11-2015

[schema type=”person” name=”Chris Corner” description=”By: Sabine van Gameren” ]

The story of Chris Corner and his band IAMX is a long one. If we go back to the moment where a lot shows were cancelled due to illness in 2013 and you are getting closer to the starting point of the new album called ‘Metanoia’.

Those who listened IAMX’ older material have known that something was bothering Chris. In 2013 the name… the label of it came out: chronic primary insomnia. Something that got a huge influence on his life. He sought threatment for it and while we are speaking with him about his album he seem to be doing better and given it space. “I was concerned when I got sick, that people did not really want to hear about it. I was confused and everything was chaotic”, Chris tells. More than happy he was with the overwhelming response he received when posting a long blog about his illness and his feelings. A lot of support came from all over the world. “When I realized people were so supportive and could relate to the issues so much, it gave me the confidence to write the album” Chris says.

Then we started talking about ‘Metanoia’, the album that got released this year and is taking Chris back on the road as we speak. The statement he starts with is easy to get knowing what he has been going through; he promised himself to work in a stress-free way. “I went back to the essence of IAMX” he says with a melancholic voice. Back to basics that is. A small room, just Chris and his instruments. Just as he did in the very first IAMX album. Chris tells that through the year he has explored lots of different recording techniques and instruments. But for this release it just did not seem to be it. “I thought, I don’t really want to do that. I don’t want to collaborate with anyone, I want to keep it simple”, he tells.

IAMXWhat really seem to have a big support for him were once again: the fans. The album has partly been made by the use of crowdfunding and to keep the believers on board he posted videos of what he had been working on. It seemed to give him all motivation he need as he explains: “It was a good driving force for me to really emerge myself in the project. To fulfil my commitment”. However even though the band has done a completely crowdfunded album before, this time they also worked with an indie label as a stable factor behind that. He did not really thought it would be a problem and it turned out it didn’t as Chris explains: “Some labels will indulge the crowdfunding thing, because they get presales for the record anyway. It does not hurt the relationship with the label”. And so come the opening was there for ‘Metanoia’ to happen.

When speaking a bit deeper about the production of ‘Metanoia’ Chris tells us a bit of how he worked on it. The album is electronic, he says he only went to record the vocals and the rest is ‘made in the machine’ but the actual song writing starts in a more traditional way. “The last song, which is called ‘Wildest Wind’ that was actually written on a grand piano, which is something that I do sometimes. It usually starts with a traditional instrument and then evolves into the electronic production, when I design the sounds. Sometimes I actually respond to an atmosphere that I created in the computer much better than I would with a guitar” , Chris tells enthusiastically. That atmospherical world that comes together while designing the sounds is more important than people may realize. Chris simply explains that it could ‘dictate’ or even that he would change lyrics based on that. Even if that would change the initial idea of it. However the essence of the song often comes from a piano or a guitar regardless from how the process changed a song.

When talking about that further it seems that the song ‘Insomnia’ might be one of the best examples of that. It was written on a guitar and for a long time Chris thought it would be just acoustic guitar and vocals that lay on the basis of it, but when the rest of the songs were done, it was clear that this song needed to be finished that way as well. “At first I did not really want to write that song. It was the core of all the darkness at that time. Once I got into the song I realized it is a very therapeutical thing to do. It was staring me in the face, it was so obvious that that song had to be completed” , Chris says about it. It is of course a song of which the title tells you straight what to expect. It is direct and maybe also a bit of reason for Chris to be careful with finishing it, regarding his first thoughts on his situation which he shared earlier about the blog he wrote. “In the end it became much bigger and richer than I thought it was going to be. A bit more dramatic. I am happiest with that track in terms of where it begun and where it ended up”, he continued.


One song that stood out to us was “The Background Noise” as it seemed a bit different than other songs to us. Chris agrees with us and tells it is written in a story telling way which he never really did so much. “Maybe once or twice, but not like this” he says. The story is based on his uncle with whom he spend a lot of time while in recovery of his illness. “He has done the whole, normal life thing and now it is falling apart. He is getting a divorce, he drinks too much, he is almost a textbook middle aged breakdown. I wanted to write about that. Just show a story that is based on my uncle” Chris tells. Almost it seems like he wants to say about a realization that we all have problems in life. Chris continues: “He has everything you are supposed to have in a normal life. Yet, there is something wrong and there is always this feeling that there is something not right about it and everybody knows that feeling”.

As you may realize ‘Metanoia’ is an album that is very close to Chris and he has openheartedly told us about this album and how it came together. The album has been made with the help of fans and will also be a great help for fans who can relate to Chris on a high level. Currently he is touring and still many shows are ahead. If you have chance to see IAMX on tour, we surely recommend you to do so.

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