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5 Minutes with garage rocker Michael Rault

Edmonton garage rocker Michael Rault just released his fourth album, Ma-Me-O, and is touring Canada with Bedouin Soundclash and Charlie Winston.

Prolific Edmonton garage rocker Michael Rault just released his fourth album, Ma-Me-O, and is touring Canada with Bedouin Soundclash and Charlie Winston.

I was just in Memphis, and this is the music I heard. What have your inspirations been?
"It's the kind of music I grew up listening to in my family, my dad and uncle both play this old sort of rock and roll, blues and soul. All my life I've been gong to their shows. I never thought I would play this kind of music, and I still don't think I'm trying to emulate it exactly. Eventually I just sort of fell in love with soul and R&B naturally."

You have a very lo-fi sound.
"A nice thing about lo-fi is that you can make a lot of interesting sounds that become harder to do when you get into a studio to make a big record. It’s easier to experiment when you have no money on the line.

Do mp3 players and lousy headphones help explain lo-fi’s popularity?
"There's so many different reasons why the lo-fi thing is popular right now, but we weren’t really going for it. We wanted more of a ‘mid-fi’ thing. I think it is true the lo-fi way of recording into a crappy tape deck does sound good through small headphone speakers."

How do you record?
I was working with a drummer, and we would record together while I played bass and guitar. Occasionally we have a third man on bass. It wasn't fully off the floor, we worked by starting with two pieces and overdubbing.

Are you touring with a rhythm section?
I'm doing a one-man band thing, mainly. I play a standard kick with my feet and play guitar and sing. At some point in the set, my sister comes out to sing harmonies and playing percussion with me. And then after that, a lot of the guys from Charlie Winston's band have been coming up and playing the last few songs with me.

 
 
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