MGMB presents an interview with Toronto based solo artist Marc-Antoine Robertson aka AlphaCub and his infectious synth-driven electro pop. His so far released singles Friends and Fighting are both haunting, energy fueled tunes and let’s be honest, it’s hard to resist pressing play all over again.
But how did it all start, what’s the story behind the tracks and what’s in store for AlphaCub this year? Let’s find out.
You decided to move to Toronto and pursue a solo project after disbanding with Soho Ghetto. When did the idea of this project come to your mind?
The band had been together and everyone had worked hard. We’d accomplished a lot together but being out in the east coast was rough for us to access larger markets, so when we did travel it cost us too much money. People in the band started to move forward with other parts of their lives and I was kinda the last one standing. I wanted to make music my life. I had just lost my ‘paying’ job and decided to move back in with my parents and put all my EI money into an EP. This project was my last big swing at the industry and in this instance it worked out. A label bit and loved what I created. I moved to Toronto to move forward and be closer to my label.
Do you prefer working solo or are there certain elements you miss about being in a band?
I don’t miss being in a band at all. I love working solo and with as many producers as I can. Two minds in the studio works best for me. I make melodies, write words and sing.
Tell us about your awesome new track Fighting.
I wrote Fighting years ago. I wanted to produce a song that was deep and passionate. The type of song that could potentially be played during a football scene on some prime time American TV show. It’s about how hard it can be to get things done.
I also really love Friends. What inspired this song?
Song was recorded by myself and my producer Alex Mede. We wanted to write something bumping and infectious. I wrote it on acoustic guitar and we got into the studio and thought ‘big, Big, BIG!!!’ as a result Friends was born. It’s literally an anthem in honour of my awesome friends. ‘Love you Brian, Matt, Ed, Katrina, Adam, Karen, new baby Ophelia, Cecily, Jon, Nathaniel, Jeff, and all my new friends in this crazy ass city!’
Both of these tracks have been on a constant repeat, they have a very infectious vibe. I can’t wait to hear more. Are you planning to release more tracks any time soon?
Next track is called Comet and I’m gonna release it with a video at the end of March or early April. Album is coming out this summer.
What’s the Toronto music scene like at the moment?
Alive and well. Relevant and beautiful. It’s great to be here.
Not an easy question, but can you choose 5 all time favourite records of yours and tell us how they’ve influenced you?
Jeff Buckley – Sketches For My Sweetheart The Drunk
This album was put together posthumously from unreleased masters and demos. His mother and Chris Cornell made this happen after his death. I think he taught me how to write with vulnerability and to be powerful with my voice when I finally found it. I’m still finding it.
Peter Gabriel – His entire discography
He is just the fucking best at everything. From music to writing to singing to performance.
Tears for Fears – Songs From The Big Chair
‘Shout’ was my first favourite song. I was 3 years old and my parents would come find me if they heard it on the radio and I’d jump on my tricycle and just cruise. I just love how that song made me feel inside. I’ve been following that feeling ever since.
Chvrches – The Bones of What You Believe
This album inspired me to do something I always wanted to do. Fully embrace the synthesizer. I saw them in October and I haven’t been that happy at a show in a long time. I just love ’em!
Frank Ocean – Channel Orange
When I heard this album I really felt like it was a game changer. A real evolution. It encompasses everything I love about an album. Great pop piece but also crossed the boundary in avant guard story telling. A real monster of an album. It made me wanna make music with relevance.
What are your main hopes for AlphaCub this year?
I just want people to like what I do so I’m going to keep producing music.