Metal Inside(r) Home Quarantine is Metal Insider’s new column during this time of isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We asked artists five questions on what’s been keeping them busy ranging from their favorite movies, food they’ve been eating, music they’ve been listening to and more. We caught up with Beyond Creation guitarist/vocalist Simon Girard as he’s been spending this time working on a fourth Beyond Creation record.
What have you been doing to pass time during Quarantine?
Well, since we have no upcoming shows or tours at this moment, I’ve been putting some of my time composing new music for a 4th Beyond Creation album. I feel lucky at this moment because I’m inspired to create new music and that is not something you can necessarily get on demand. Having the time to get creative and put your imagination and skills to work is always an exciting moment but creating good music takes time because as an artist, you want to get yourself outside the box and push your own boundaries in order to create new material that will have an impact on yourself and the listeners. So yes…it’s in the process! 🙂
I’m also composing music for a new solo project in which I play and record all the instruments. I can significantly push my skills and creativity on the other instruments which is really fun! I’d say that the music consists of a mix of Prog / Blues / Jazz / Classic & Rock so it’s hard to put a definite style to it. But in the end, it’s music and it drives varied emotions which are pretty different from what I am writing for Beyond Creation. So this project gives me the opportunity to explore different music genres and moods and one of the good things is that it might also lead to new influences and sounds in Beyond Creation.
Have you been listening to any music or have any playlists worth checking out?
I am not listening to a lot of music right now as it somehow helps me create sounds that are more personally connected to my own imagination rather than from direct influences and other bands. But as suggestions, during the past months I’ve been listening a lot to the latest Nick Johnston’s album called “Wide Eyes In The Dark” which is absolutely amazing. I really like the different feels, dynamics, tones and ambiances he creates. I’ve also been listening to a lot of Snarky Puppy (We like it here) , Vulfpeck, The Mars Volta (De-Loused in the Comatorium), Slipknot and also got back into some old school music like Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Van Halen and many more.
A lot of people have been spending this time cooking including making their own bread, what food have you been prepping during this time?
I’ve been cooking some Carbonara pastas and pizzas which I absolutely love but I’ve also been using the BBQ a lot since it’s getting a bit warmer here in Quebec. All kinds of veggies with oil and spices, you wrap them in foil paper and put it on the BBQ….it’s delightful haha.
But in order to cook good food this summer, I started building “raised garden beds” with all recycled wood so we’ll have fresh veggies and fruits during the next few months. We’re also planning on having 2 chickens…I just love eggs so much!
In terms of entertainment, what movies, TV shows, books, or games have been keeping you busy?
I’ve been listening to “La casa de Papel” or “Money Heist” in English which is absolutely amazing! It’s a Spanish TV show that talks about 9 persons, teaming up to rob the Royal Mint of Spain and it’s really thrilling. The creators and actors are really good at keeping the audience on the hook and getting us emotionally attached to all different characters. I also watched “Narcos” which I really dug a lot. There’s one about the Colombian Cartel and a second one about the Mexican Cartel and both were fantastic in my opinion. One TV show that also really stands out and fascinates me is “Dark.” It’s a German TV show about the aftermath of a child’s disappearance which exposes the secrets and hidden connections among four estranged families as they slowly unravel a sinister time travel conspiracy which spans across three generations. They really managed to create something interesting and out of the box here.
What advice do you have for your fans in isolation during this time?
Take this time to do things that you love, things that make you grow inside! Try stuff that you’ve always wanted to do but never had the time. But more importantly, take care of each other. I know it can be very difficult for many people that are suffering from self isolation, especially those of you who live alone, have no family around or anyone to talk to. Please talk about it, share your stories on social media, don’t be afraid to seek help. There’s always people ready to help! Write to your people, call them because only a few words can make a whole difference in their day.
Some people don’t even have enough money to buy food so if you can, donate and share so more people become aware and conscious of the chance they have and what they can do to help others. There’s no gesture too small to benefit someone.
As a band related story, we (Beyond Creation) were in Europe when things started to get bad. I can say it was a lot of stress for everyone on the tour because States and Countries were closing their borders one after the other. We were traveling all across the continent, interacting with hundreds and thousands of people every day without knowing if we would contract the virus, propagate it without knowing it or even if we would be able to get back home. In the end, the rest of the tour got cancelled and we’ve been able to book direct flights from the UK to Montreal. We all did what we had to do in order to keep us and the people around safe. Of course we lost a lot of money due to the cancellation and the emergency flights but after being home and seeing the situation getting worse everyday, we all quickly realized that despite the big losses of money, we were very lucky to be back home safe and sound. We had help from our family and friends reaching out to us and we will always be grateful for that. We can now take care of each other and try to give back to those who need it.
So I think we should all take this time to refocus on what’s really important and think about the way we can make things better, not only for us, but for our planet and for people around us.
Buy locally as much as you can, go on quality over quantity and take care of each other. Life is not a competition.
One last thing, I’m not only talking for us but for every artist that you like, please support them. If they make a difference in your life, buy their music, buy their merch, share their stuff! You are the reason why we put all of our lives and efforts into creating something special that reunites us all.
Thanks a lot to everyone for reading and stay safe.