Need to Know: Enio


By Justin McCraw

You mentioned that in the liner notes -- that a lot of the songs on the album are songs that you've written previously, but never thought that you had the instrumentality, maybe, to play them.
Yeah. A lot of the songs, whenever I'd write them and I would play them, they'd sound OK acoustic, but when I'd go to record them, I'd want a big production sound. "Thirteen," for instance, the song I wrote for my niece. I wrote it when she was 13, and she's 18 now. Five years is a huge difference. I started recording it originally, but it didn't fit. The song wanted a bigger dance number, and it wanted louder instruments and a more progressive chorus, and I just couldn't give it that. And now that I have those resources, I feel that, not limitless, but the ceiling has definitely been raised for me to be able to do more with my sound.

You describe yourself as being queer. Can you tell me what that means to you because I know people have sometimes very personal and different definitions for that?
It's funny that you actually say that. A friend of mine, we were talking about that. And he was saying that he refers to himself as queer, and then after a while he had to say, "You know, I think I'm just gay. I don't think I'm queer. ' I thought I was being all politically correct by calling myself 'queer,' but I feel like, maybe I should just be saying 'gay.'" I say 'queer' more because I feel like sometimes I don't fit into the white, middle-to-upper-class male definition of what gay means. I am white, and I'm, well, I'm not middle-class. Other people looking at me would very closely let me into that category, but I feel that there are significant differences in the values that I have and the sort of way that I understand culture and society. I think delineating queer is more about perception than sexual preference. So the way I perceive society and the way I perceive culture and the ideas I have, I feel they're a little different than what I believe gay means. But that's also a lot of my academic upbringing that sort of lead me to that decision.

And you said you still wanted to get your PhD in sociology and music theory?
Sociology of music, which is sort of like sociology, but it studies the culture of music. So how music is produced, what it means to people, that sort of idea. And I do want to carry on. I'm taking a year off. I'm completing my master's, hopefully, by the end of the summer, and then I'm taking a year off to just do some work and find out what kind of work I can do with a master's of sociology. And then from there I might make a decision. Music is great, I would love to continue music as a career and do that. It's a really hard thing to get into, and it's a very poor industry to start out in. So if you don't make it big in a couple of years, you're really hard-pressed for money if you're not selling a lot of albums. So I'll always be continuing music, but I don't know if I can ever rely on it as my sole source of income.

What happened to "Save Me, Caroline" from the Immolate sampler? Are you working on a full-length B side album?
Oh, right, "Save Me, Caroline." I was considering it. What I love about music is sort of the releases and the products and the different little things about music. I'm not so much a live performer. I do like playing live occasionally, but live stresses me out a little too much, and it makes it not fun sometimes. What I do really like is recording and putting together little compilations and little things like that. But sometimes I feel like I'm over-saturating my market -- I'm providing too much. My friend Caroline Brooks from the Good Lovelies -- they're a Canadian folk group who are fantastic and they're actually just starting to become really, really popular here. They won a Juno, and a Juno is like the Canadian Grammy. I was very, very proud of that moment -- a little jealous, but very proud of that moment. And so I had written that song for her years ago for her birthday, and so I decided to record it and send it to her. I liked how it came out so much that I decided to use it as a B side. But it's not a B side in the strictest sense, where most B sides are recorded during the course of the album but just don't make it on it, so "Save Me, Caroline" comes a little after.