What a weekend it’s been so far, I literally got off a plane from London (Ontario) recently after spending time with a super talented chap called Dean Mason who’s latest project "Gnostic Gorilla" has been gaining steady momentum since his earlier work under the monicker "The Lonely Ghost Project". He’s been experimenting with electronic music and has previously released many albums including St. Basil's Asylum which is available now on Cleopatra Records which is the first for Gnostic Gorilla.
He arranged to meet up for a chat at a disused roller disco on the outskirts of town, I took a cab down there and once inside, strapped on my skates and awaited his arrival, here’s how I got on….
Hi Dean, great to meet you, please tell me a bit more about yourself, where you’re from and what genre best describes your work?
Hello. Happy to answer your questions as best I can without having to plead the filth…I mean the fifth…hahahahahahaha. Yeah so, more or less, my first single was released as “Dean Mason” and “Lonely Ghost Productions” was the name of the so called makeshift label. Had a great band come into the studio with me and recorded “Dark Hallway/Golgotha”. When I returned to ‘attempting’ to record music, (2012) I experimented with electronic music mostly, which even though I have always been a fan of good old heavy metal bands, etc. I was also a huge electronic music devotee and decided to go that route. Honestly, I had really no intention of pursuing anything other than an artistic outlet—a hobby—and that was it. At first I did mostly soundtrack oriented tracks like “Via Dolorosa” (rereleased as part of my other project “DJ Deen-M) and never planned on writing ‘songs’. My first actual song was “Requiem For The Prophet of Doom” a tribute to Peter Steele (RIP) released as “The Lonely Ghost Project” . In the Fall of 2015, I released “St. Basil’s Asylum” which has been rereleased by Cleopatra Records in October of 2018. That’s the first time I used the name “Gnostic Gorilla”. I changed the project name because there was/is an American Band with the name “Lonely Ghost Parade” and I didn’t want any confusion, even though I was using “Lonely Ghost” WAY before they even existed. I have released about 5-6 albums in total.
If I were to use the phrase "for fans of", who would you say you are similar to?
Well, I would say if you like Bauhaus, Skinny Puppy, Ministry, Alien Sex Fiend, Rammstein, NIN, you might like Gnostic Gorilla.
How did you get into music in the first place?
As a lad I was blown away with Gary Numan. I wanted to do what he did! (though…I did it “my way”…hahahahahahaha)
Are you from a musical family? If so, who plays what?
My dad was in a band. He also taught music from home (bass, guitar, accordion) It’s fair to say that I got my love for music from my dad at an early age, absolutely.
What was the first CD or record you ever bought?
If you could only play one CD or record until the end of time, which would it be and why?
Which was the first ever gig you attended?
Tell us about any upcoming shows or festival appearances, where are they?
No plans at present to do live shows
Have you ever met any of your musical heroes? If so, what happened? Were you glad you met them (they say you should never meet your heroes!)
I met Gary Numan about three times. I met Peter Steele of Type O Negative as well as Johnny Kelly. Met Dan Akroyd, even though that isn’t because he was a musical hero of mine. Just happened. I guess, I lost the ‘star struck’ thing a long time ago. I wasn’t disappointed meeting any of these guys but as well, they’re only human and I never saw it any other way. I never walked away thinking, “Oh wow…I met a deity”. With regards to not meeting your ‘heroes’, that may be quite true, especially if you’re young and still a bit idealistic.
If you weren't doing music, what would you be doing now? (as in what job would you have?)
Well, since I’m NOT a big star and cannot rely on my music to survive, I DO have to rely on a real job so…not sure how to answer that….
What do you LOVE and HATE about being a performer / in a band?
It’s not a love/hate thing for me. I don’t have a whole lot of expectations so I take it as it comes. I’m grateful to have a label deal with Cleopatra Records and KL-Dark Records as well as Nowhere Now Records so that’s a good thing. I guess what I find difficult is being who I am, I go through periods whereby I question what I’m doing.
Where can we find out more about you?
We’d like to thank Dean for sparing his time to chat to us and we wish him every success in the future with Gnostic Gorilla.