If we’ve learned anything from music it’s that love, good or bad, is a great subject when it comes to crafting a song. It’s worked wonders for a certain country turned pop star, and here’s to hoping it does the same for Eric Reid. The indie pop artist from Toronto penned a song about a dilemma many face in love and from it came his latest single, “I Need You Closer.” He talked in depth about that, a little about his own love life and what’s next.
Kendra: You said that when you were done recording “I Need You Closer” you weren’t happy with it because it sounded fake, but after you redid it you noted how it was still fake but in a good way. For those a little confused by that, what you talking about Eric?
Eric Reid: I guess it’s just a personal preference. The string line originally was just a MIDI VST — so it was just a sample played straight from a keyboard to a computer, which means there was no realness to it. Recording it to tape and then mic’ing a tape machine means that you hear the shitty string MIDI string sample, but you also hear the room that the tape is playing in, which gives it bit of a different and almost more organic sound. So it’s fake, but it’s also a bit more real. Have I made it even more confusing?
Kendra: The idea behind “I Need You Close” is one many can relate to. The yearning to be close to someone but not wanting to hurt them. Did that stem from a string of bad relationships?
Eric: Yeah, I guess it more particularly stemmed from one bad relationship. We were just stuck in a state of off and on and it was probably toxic for both of us. The song explains it, I guess.
Kendra: You originally wanted to call the track “Hedgehog Dilemma,” but decided against it. Nevertheless, it made me think of Sonic. With that, did you have any favorite video games growing up?
Eric: The first video game I ever played, besides Pong on my parents DOS was Super Mario 3. I’m 29 now, so I kind of grew up in the Golden Era of video games, they’ve always been a big part of my life. My grandparents had a Nintendo, like the original and I’d always be so excited to go visit them because I could sit in their basement for hours and play those games. I remember going to the mall one day and playing a Super Mario 64 on a Nintendo 64 for the first time and leaving the mall in this kind of strange daze like, “Holy shit, what did I just play? That was the most amazing thing I ever experienced.” My parents were like, we’ll never buy you one of those stupid systems, but that Christmas they surprised my brother and I and we got an N64. So the first games I really played the shit out of were the games that came with that, which was Super Mario 64, Cruisin’ USA and Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey. Video games have come a long way though, I have an Xbox One now. I find gaming to be oddly meditative and therapeutic. Its nice being able to shut off your mind and just mindlessly walk hit some buttons.
Kendra: Are you dating now or are you still holding off because of the whole hedgehog dilemma?
Eric: I’m taking it easy.
Kendra: What’s going on with you as far as playing shows right now?
Eric: I’m playing a show on November 1st at The Piston in Toronto. It’s going to be an acoustic thing and I’m doing it with my friend Brianna. She’s a really beautiful singer and we practiced and our voices sound really great together. I’ve been writing a bunch of songs with her and I singing together in mind, so the next album is definitely going to be in that vein. You should go, we sound like a couple of angels.
Kendra: Other than possible touring, what do you have planned come 2017?
Eric: Just recording more music, I’m thinking about hitting Europe this summer, so maybe I can bring my guitar and kidnap Brianna.
Kendra: Sticking with the idea of a love you cannot have, if you had to make a mixtape for someone you wanted to be with but had to stay away from – what five songs would be on it?