Tim Mechling Unravels The Puzzle Of The Decline Of The Flies And The Rise Of Spiders

The Decline of the Flies and the Rise of the Spiders” is a horrific freak-folk album with 9 songs on it which spans for 44 minuters. The album about death, sin, war, lust, murder, rebirth and all things southern gothic in-between.

It features an epic overture, eerie soundscapes, spoken word passages, murder ballads, over-the-top guitar solos, drunken preacher sermons and so much more. Like a Pink Floyd album, it was made to be listened to continuously from A-Z. Most of the songs bleed into one another with transitions, making the song more relatable.

This album was recorded in a manic spree in my little house, with Tim Mechling on the Guitar, piano, organ, bass, drums, lead vocal and Hannah Wyatt coming in with the Violin, harmonies, spoken word, John Swanke finished the job with his Electric guitar and Tad Kroening blessing the project with some more Spoken word

In a recent interview between Mister Styx Of Musicarenagh and Tim Mechling he fished out his thoughts about the music industry as well his growth as a musician. 

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Is there a story behind your stage name?
For the most part, I’ve operated under my given name. Lately, though, I’ve played with a band of rotating personnel called “The Vandal Hands of Man.” It’s all my songs with a few covers sprinkled in, a Tom Waits here, a Pixies there.

I was driving with my girlfriend (and masterful music collaborator), Hannah Wyatt and we took a bathroom break at a rest stop. There was this giant cross-section of a fallen tree hanging from chains, somewhere around Pendleton Oregon. They had one of those tourist attraction billboards with a historical factoid, and its title was “The Vandal Hands of Man.”

It told the story of early pioneers in the covered wagon days that took refuge under this improbable giant tree in the middle of a field. When they came back a few months later, the tree had been cut down for unclear reasons. I feel like that represents my music: Unexpected, puzzling and cruel.

ALT-FOLK, ART ROCK, POST ROCK, PSYCHEDELIC, SOUNDTRACK, ALT ROCK, POP, ALTERNATIVE ROCK, MALE VOCALS, CINEMATIC, SUPER EDGY, US BASED, SINGER SONGWRITER, BAND, FULL BAND SOUND, QUIRKY ELECTRONIC, DRONEEXPERIMENTAL, GENERAL, TIM MECHLING, THE DECLINE OF THE FLIES AND THE RISE OF SPIDERS, THE DECLINE OF THE RISE OF SPIDERS BY TIM MECHLING, MISTER STYX, STYX, MR STYX, NEW MUSIC, NEW MUSIC, MUSICARENAGH, MUSIC ARENAGH, MUSIC ARENA GH,  
Tim Mechling Unravels The Puzzle Of The Decline Of The Flies And The Rise Of Spiders


Where do you find inspiration?
When I was a teen, Pink Floyd’s 1970s catalog was my everything. Dark Side of the Moon on repeat, forcing my friends to listen to “Animals” and all 20-some-aught minutes of “Echoes” from Meddle.

When I got to college, I overplayed Tom Waits and Radiohead. Over time, I landed on M. Ward, Kurt Vile, Mac DeMarco, Godspeed You! Black Emperor and more ambient, hip-hoppy and electronic artists like Portishead and Boards of Canada.


More than anything, perhaps, the literature of Cormac McCarthy changed the way I thought about writing and poetic language. His bleak, meandering worlds informed my soundscapes and I don’t think I could return to a pre-McCarthy mindset.


What was the role of music in the early years of your life?

It’s dorky to say, but until I was about 14, I only listened to movie soundtracks and video game music. Edward Scissorhands, Lord of the Rings, Raymond Briggs’s “The Snowman” and Ken Burns’s documentaries were on heavy rotation through the 90s and early aughts, and it wasn’t until I was full grown that I got a taste for grunge, the British Invasion, classic rock and more experimental stuff.

Are you from a musical or artistic family?

I didn’t come from a particularly musical family, but there were always sounds happening. My brothers and I used to record noises and skits on cassette tapes and it was a big day when we learned that depressing the pause button on the stereo a bit could slow down or speed up the tape. It turned our little boy voices into the sounds of demons, chipmunks, bitcrushed madness or abject noise.

Who inspired you to be a part of the music industry?
Lumping me in with “the music industry” is a stretch. I’m perhaps the least marketable musician of the 2020s.

I tried to be a session/recording artist with a few performers like Courtney Marie Andrews and Dillon Warnek, but I got really impatient with backing up other musicians. Their feedback was always to play more “tasteful” parts when I wanted to go to the moon and take a piss on it. Or worse.

Music is a hobby now, and I don’t expect to pay the bills with it. I have a good job that I’m good at, and it pays me more than I’m worth. It’s extremely freeing to divorce yourself from the commercial aspect of music, and you can be as weird or as acerbic as I want to be.


How did you learn to sing/write/to play?

My cousin Jordan was about my age, give or take a few months. My aunt got him piano lessons with the Suzuki method and he was this little prodigy, and he’d describe the music as “easy as pie.” I asked my mom for piano lessons and she told me I’d never practice.


Out of spite, I learned how to play the piano on my own and that was a huge gateway into the music world.

What was the first concert that you ever went to and who did you see perform?

I saw Tenacious D during their Pick of Destiny tour. Neil Hamburger opened. In a lot of ways, Neil Hamburger’s set was what put the hook in me.

The audience hated him so much, they threw entire rolls of quarters at him. Like C batteries. I think a used tampon made it onto the stage.

Neil Hamburger didn’t change his set at all. He leaned in. He trolled them harder. In the face of a sea of boos and projectiles that could maim or kill him, he stood by his act.

I think that changed the way I thought about performance forever.

How could you describe your music?
It’s been all over the place. My earlier stuff (Long Live the King) was very Modest Mouse meets The Beatles. The Great Igor was informed by Sparklehorse, Elliott Smith and Tom Waits. The Decline of the Flies and the Rise of Spiders is like The Dark Side of the Moon of southern gothic folk-rock.


Describe your creative process.

I don’t know if you could even call it a process. When inspiration strikes, you drop everything and write it down or it’s gone forever. Sometimes during a boring meeting on Zoom or driving in the car, you get a melody. A troubling lyric pops into your head. You write it down on a napkin or a legal pad and shove it all together.
My little home studio has a mountain of scrap paper with scribbles lines and drawings all over it. When it’s time to record, you have to condense that pile of garbage into something interesting.


What is your main inspiration?

Tough question.
I’ve got a huge place in my heart for out-there composers. Charles Ives, Penderecki, Bartok, Shostakovich, even a little Beethoven. Charles Ives, in particular, had a way of turning music on its head and twisting wholesome American tropes into nightmares. To today’s ears, it’s not that wild, but he was doing that atonal and unsettling music long before postmodernism. We’re talking late 1800s, right after the Civil War.


What musician do you admire most and why?

I’d have to say one of my best friends, John Swanke, is the musician I set my watch to. He’s found a way to elevate meandering open-tuning guitar pieces into something truly transcendent and unapologetic. His musical philosophy is to be admired and envied.


Did your style evolve since the beginning of your career?

Big time. I started in rock music with my attempt to be a crowd-pleasing alternative rock band, called “The Damned Dirty Apes.” I folded to pressure from my bandmates and eventually the band sounded like Rage Against the Machine, minus the talent. With guitar lines played through a Line 6 Spyder II amp.

From that band, I learned trying to please everybody pleases nobody. As Lisa Simpson said of Poochie the Dog being added to Itchy and Scratchy, it was a “soulless by-product of committee thinking.”

I’ve given up on making listeners happy ever since.


Who do you see as your main competitor?

Billy Squier and I have been in an active feud for over a decade.
Just kidding.
I think I’m happy in my own odd lane and I’m not competing with anybody.


What are your interests outside of music?
Oh, I have a few. Cooking and fishing are big in my world. As is drawing and writing. At one point, I wanted to be a short fiction writer that illustrated his own pieces. I gave up on that after attending a few readings during and after my college years, when I found most other writers to be unbearable.

They probably think the same of me.


If it wasn’t a music career, what would you be doing?

“Career” is a generous term for what I do. If I hadn’t picked music as a pastime, I’d probably be a soulless finance guy that golfs and posts pictures of his family. With a 401K and appreciating property, etc.

The path I’ve chosen is one of poverty and I wouldn’t change a thing

.
What is the biggest problem you have encountered in the journey of music?

The most soul-crushing moments have been seeing schmoozers and self-promoters succeed. It’s cut-throat and downright brutal out there for artists that want to do something outside of the bell curve of Spotify Playlists and over-compressed, radio-friendly swill.

Don’t get me wrong, there are amazing artists doing amazing things right now. I don’t want to sound like a things-were-better-back-in-the-day boomer, but I think a lot of today’s paths to stardom and exposure are scummy and pay-to-play.

Rewarding algorithms and playlist curators is no way to get offbeat music out there.

If you could change one thing in the music industry, what would it be?

I would say rewarding experimentalism and expanding the boundaries of music would be my vote. Again, a lot of avant-garde music has a real audience, but it’s difficult to create a fanbase when every open-mic songwriter and lo-fi-beats-to-study-to producer has a Spotify and a Soundcloud.


The classic A&R process wasn’t a dream, either. Don’t get me wrong. The music industry has always been an exploitative exercise in keeping artists down, and streaming is the fresh hell we face. All you can do is give money directly to artists you love, buy their merch and actually turn out to shows when they play.

It’s not much, but if everyone did it, this industry would be a very different slice of the economy.


What are your plans for the coming months?

I have a new album I’m working on that is about as far from “The Decline of the Flies and the Rise of Spiders” as you can get. It’s more dreamy, synth-forward and melodic, which is a subset of music I’ve always loved.

Because it’s me doing it, it’ll come off as unlistenable to most people, but I’m doing my damnest to make the music I want to hear.

ALT-FOLK, ART ROCK, POST ROCK, PSYCHEDELIC, SOUNDTRACK, ALT ROCK, POP, ALTERNATIVE ROCK, MALE VOCALS, CINEMATIC, SUPER EDGY, US BASED, SINGER SONGWRITER, BAND, FULL BAND SOUND, QUIRKY ELECTRONIC, DRONEEXPERIMENTAL, GENERAL, TIM MECHLING, THE DECLINE OF THE FLIES AND THE RISE OF SPIDERS, THE DECLINE OF THE RISE OF SPIDERS BY TIM MECHLING, MISTER STYX, STYX, MR STYX, NEW MUSIC, NEW MUSIC, MUSICARENAGH, MUSIC ARENAGH, MUSIC ARENA GH,  
Tim Mechling



Do you have any artistic collaboration plans

I’m awash in talented collaborators. My lovely girlfriend, Hannah Wyatt, is always at my side in writing, recording and producing. She’s a concert violinist with one of those voices that sounds good with anybody. Lucky me!

The aforementioned John Swanke is always a go-to for analog effects and guitar noodling. He’s never afraid to put the needle in the red, as a man says.

Then there’s my friend, Caspar, who goes by the stage name “Prongs.” He’s a more digital artist than I’ve worked within the the past, but he’s a true talent. I’m excited to see what hellish noises we could make together.

What message would you like to give to your fans?

I won’t tell the fans what to do. If they listen and like it, that’s great! If they hate it, I’m just as stoked. I’m trying to make something that rattles them in one way or another.

The worst thing music can be is forgettable

Mister Styx
Mister Styxhttps://musicarenagh.com
Entertainment freak || Facts only || Mechanical Engineer by profession, i guess i can do blogging part time right? Right, there we go, thats where it all started
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