Vein Collector has unleashed his label debut album Prophetic! The album declares all-out war on religion and its dogmatic ideology. At the head of Vein Collector is Dan Guenther. Also appearing on Prophetic is Marcus Kolar of Kommandant who provides his lyrical edge with the vocals on the track Dawn of Fire. Providing guitar solos on Prophetic are Jeremy Wagner of Broken Hope/Lupara on the track The Sound of Delay and Dan Clark of The Dark Clan making this the complete package.
If you’re an avid fan of industrial as well as metal and hardcore, Vein Collector brings the best of both worlds. Intelligent synths, smashing grooves, and punishing guitars make this project thoroughly enjoyable. To get an insight into Dan Guenther’s world, we have an exclusive interview with the artist.
1. How long have you been doing what you’re doing and how did you get started in the first place?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): I have been writing and recording Vein Collector for about 4 years now, I started this project as an escape from my band Blind Faith and Envy which was a more upbeat pop project, I have always wanted to write music that had more edge with vocals that are more metal infused. I have always been influenced by raw energetic music.
2. Who were your first musical influences that you can remember?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): The first?? Well that would be rock bands like Def Leppard, Poison and stuff like that, it grew to then be bands like Metallica and Megadeth and as years went on I got more into synth based 80’s music and it all went down hill from there. As of now I mainly listen to black metal and industrial pop music.
3. Which artists do you listen to today? And is there anybody you’d like to collaborate with?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): I listen to a lot of Edge of dawn and Seabound. Along with bands like The Killers, Ludovico Tequnique, Jungle Rot and some Cynic. It is a wide spectrum of music and that is why I think I am able to come out with music that shows different colors. I love doing collaborations and have done some great ones but one I would love to do is a pop project with Frank from Seabound but I am rather sure that might not happen as I contacted him several times about it. HA!
4. Describe the first piece of musical equipment that you actually purchased. And which is the one piece of hardware or software you’re still looking to add to your collection now?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): First was a Harmony Electric guitar from a local music shop, that was seriously the best day ever, I still remember the first thing I ever wrote which was hilarious when looking back but I will die one day knowing I got to a point musically because of that day. If I could have one thing in the studio now I would love to have some EVENT OPAL studio monitors, these things are insane and sound perfect but the price tag is about 2 grand each or used a bit cheaper so it would be a long while before that happens. As for synths I would love to have a moog phatty, those little guys are full of possibilities.
5. Tell us something about your current hardware/software and instrument setup?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): As of now I am using Cubase 7 for all my recording, I have been using that software since SX, I love it and I know inside out. I rarely use hardware as the studio I am in now is very small so hardware doesn’t have much space. I do have a nice Ensonqix ASR 10, Ensoniq VFX sd, Roland Juno 6 and a couple korg rack units. I do love vst synths for their ease although they do not get that warmth I love from that Juno or other analogues. I do plan to build once I move out of the space I am in.
6. Solo studio work and music creation, or interacting with a full band, which do you prefer and why?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): I have done both for many years, I started my musical career in a full band, the drama was just too much and that will never change in a full band set-up. I prefer staying a studio musician although I do have plans in the future for Vc to be live just not sure when. There is nothing like being in full control of your art.
7. Which one of your original songs is the most appreciated by your fans, and do you remember when and why you composed it?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): I believe it to be Hate Disciples, it was the third song I wrote for the Prophet album, I was in a crazy place in my life and I wanted to prove I could pull off something that I never did before, everything about the song was completely made up on the spot and recorded, even to the lyrics. It all fell together rather quickly except for that bridge bass-line. I wrote this song because I always had a hatred for people who preach and think they are free yet look at others like they need to be saved, I believe in free speech but only if you are not a douche bag bible pusher, if you are your opinions are shit.
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8. On which one of your songs do you think you delivered your personal best performance so far, from a technical point of view?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): Hate Disciples, I love the bridge and the bass line, there was alot of practice for that one. That song was recorded rather quickly but I did make sure the bass line was up to par with what I wanted in the end result.
9. Which ingredient do you think is most essential in making VEIN COLLECTOR music sound the way it does?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): The fact that I listen to so many different styles of music can create a very extreme style of music, using the most extreme guitar styles and 80’s style syths with harsh production gives Vein Collector an original sound. I have been writing and recording music for a long time and if it wasn’t for every single one of those projects and all the mistakes I have made there would be no Vc.
10. If you were forced to choose only one, which emotion, more than any other drives you to stay in this tough business. Is it joy, anger, desire, passion or pride and why?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): Passion is why I am here but desire is what I have to spread a message. Vc is a platform to tell people that every God has a being or entity to look up to and the one you praise is just a conveyor of information from another source. Something started this whole thing just to gain respect from others, because though magic was the only way to gain attention. Fuck God! Worship your way of life and decisions.
11. Which aspect of being an independent artist and the music making process excites you most and which aspect discourages you most?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): The fact I am able to create something in my home studio on my own time is amazing, back in the 80’s and the 90’s you would have to go to a studio and pay by the hour every time you had an idea, although what is discouraging about this is since recording equipment is so available to all musicians your competition to get heard is so huge, I always say if I did what I am doing now but it was the 80’s I would probably be rather successful. Music is always exciting no matter what, the next time I write something I think is great will encourage me to keep going.
12. Tell us something about your songwriting process. What usually comes first the lyrics or the music? And on which instrument do you compose?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): I always start with a melody line from a synth, then I will add a generic beat to give me inspiration, I have done this for 15 years no matter the project. Then the next thing I know I am completely lost in the writing aspect. Sometimes I will write a whole song quickly and end up enjoying one part then I will dissect the whole thing all surrounding that one part.
13. How involved are you in any of the the recording, producing, mastering and marketing processes of your music. Do you outsource any of these processes?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): Vein Collector is solely my project, I write all the music and do all the vocals, since I have my own Mastering business (MORBID MASTERING) I also do the mastering in the end. There is nothing like having complete control.
14. The best piece of advice in this business you actually followed so far, and one you didn’t follow, but now know for sure that you should have?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): Vein Collector is an influence on music and religion and one thing I was told was to keep religion out of my music and of course I did not follow that path, the one thing I wish I listed too from the beginning is to play live, it is very important when it comes to being a successful musician, when you an electronic style band there are a lot of options for playing live but it is not a typical setup that you write music with a band in a practice spot and then go record and play live, this is completely backwards since you write and record in a studio then have to figure out how to play it live. One other thing I am glad I did not listen too was getting an INDIE BIBLE and spending tons of money and thinking anyone from those lists would actually listen to my music, I never waste my money on too much promo as most of it is a complete and utter waste of space and time.
15. At this point, as an independent artist, which is the one factor you desire most, and feel will undeniably benefit the your future (for example increased music distribution, better quality production, more media exposure, bigger live gigs etc…)?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): Playing live and playing the right shows is very important, Vc is not a live band yet but will be one day, I do not plan to play every gig offered but I do plan to play a few good shows a year. I think Vc would benefit from this very much.
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16. Do you consider Internet and all the social media websites, as fundamental to your career, and indie music in general, or do you think it has only produced a mass of mediocre “copy-and-paste” artists, who flood the web, making it difficult for real talent to emerge?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): Yes and no, I reminisce the days of sending letters back and forth with other bands and fans we would send flyers and write personal letters, I still keep in touch with those people. With the internet there is so much going on that replies end up being generic. I am sad for the music industry, although gaining fans around the world is easier in the end as I think the mass amount of bands and projects make it near impossible to get heard. As well the mass amount of ways you would promote your music online like Facebook marketing and google ads, it think this is a huge waste of money, I have done alot of marketing online and it is just so easy for people to click like on something to never be heard of again.
17. Is the music produced on “PROPHETIC” exactly where you want your sound to be today? Or in retrospect, would you change anything on, or about the Ep in anyway?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): I love the way it came out, I think it is raw and in your face. No matter the production value it yells ” FUCK YOU and your ideals”!! There is a ton of emotion in this album and I think if you are open to it you will see it. I will always work for the exact sound in my head but once an album is set as done then I can enjoy it for what it is.
18. Tell us something about the players, the recording and the concept behind the Ep, “PROPHETIC?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): The concept is simple, we are all Prophets for someone, we all want to be leaders. For Christians it is Jesus / God, they look up to this being to lead them through life, although this “GOD” has someone or something to look up to as well. The Vein Collector is the highest being in light and darkness, we are all prophets in the end to the highest energy. I am not the Collector as I am only one of the collected beings to survey the game of what we created for ourselves. Life is energy and the highest God is energy. All lyrics and music is created to tell a message but I will not preach unless asked.
19. What do you think is the biggest barrier you have to face and overcome as an indie songwriter/performer, in your quest to achieve your goals and wider spread success?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): Vc is a cross genre band so trying to get people to open up and listen to this project is going to be the biggest hurdle, I do not do this for fame or money I do this because I love it and have to do it. There is so much competition in this industry that we need to be original and we need to stand out. Oh….. and money…. I need money to make it.
20. What is the ONE thing you are NOT willing or prepared to do, in your quest to achieve a successful musical career?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): I am not willing to pretend I get along with everyone, this is why Vc will remain underground. I will not go drinking at the local douche clubs just to prove I exist.
21. Tell us about any new projects or ideas you will be working on in the near future, and how fans can connect with you?
Dan Guenther (VEIN COLLECTOR): As of now I am working on a new Vein Collector album, I have 4 songs mostly done. I plan to have contributions by some great artists so besure to keep checking in. Also I will be doing a lot of contests this Fall and Winter for free T-shirts and codes for the next album.
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