Published on November 15th, 2019 | by Guest Editor0
The Sweet Kill Talks About His New Video and Album, Neon Black
The Sweet Kill is back with a powerful collection of songs that sonically pay tribute to 90’s alternative rock, mixed with passages of electronica. Neon Black is the band’s debut album, that comes after the release of their Love & Death EP earlier this year.
Neon Black’s crushing lead single, Night Terror Creeper, was released last month along an impacting BDSM-inspired video. The short movie, directed by the late cinematographer Jamie Mitchell, features extreme dancing and executed choreography, juxtaposed with a helpless straight jacket bound Pete Mills (lead singer and composer of the band) while an actual live panther snarls and paces back and forth.
The Hype Magazine had a chance to talk to Pete Mills, the man behind The Sweet Kill, and talk about his video, upcoming album, and more.
You recently released a video for your single “Night Terror Creeper”. The video has a very strong visual impact, featuring dancers cover in latex, you in a straight jacket, and even a panther. How did you come up with the concept behind the video?
The song is about my night terrors that have plagued me all my life. As a teenager my parents would run into my bedroom waking me up from turning my room upside down in my sleep. Later on in life I would punch massive holes through the walls and once sleeping at my friends house in Echo Park I woke up to blood everywhere because I punched through the window, the neighbors called the cops and it was a tricky situation to explain. Thus the song Night Terror Creeper was born. As I have suffered alcoholic torment over the years especially in sobriety I have learned that the subconscious, which rules the roost when sleeping, is where the disease of alcoholism resides. I feel the visuals of this video display the frantic mind of the disease of addiction. I’m bound and helpless as aliens and panthers are aggressively attacking me. In a tribal way I feel the ritualistic dancing and torturing are well executed. My intension was to create the scariest video ever period and of story. Now a black panther is a majestically terrifying divine animal. The sad part about the making of this video was the director my close friend Jamie Mitchell relapsed and died Aug. 20 2019. He shot 3 videos for The Sweet Kill starting with Soul Satellite then War Then The Girl Who Kissed The World Goodbye. This devastated me and I dedicate this song and to him my befallen friend.
This is the first single off your upcoming album Neon Black. Why did you choose this song as the first offering?
It’s the most unique and dark. I wanted to come out of the gate swinging as my last EP Love & Death was very emotional. All the songs on Neon Black were written around Night Terror Creeper!!
Where did you compose and record the tracks?
In my workspace on Hollywood called “The Audio Studio”. Some songs had the drums recorded in the Warehouse Studio in my hometown of Vancouver BC Canada.
How do you think LA affects your songwriting process? Does the city inspire you?
Living in LA TOTALLY affects my songwriting process!! The Goth and industrial community is so influential here. So inspiring to be amongst likeminded artists’ performers and creative individuals.
Why did you decide to move from Canada to LA?
Having run the gamut within the major label vortex with my Glam Punk band Flash Bastard I felt a change was necessary. I felt being in Canada all industry types would always talk about LA this and LA that so I thought why not go down there and see what its all about. Best decision I’ve ever made!!
Besides writing and composing for your own project, The Sweet Kill, you have produced for many artists including Sheryl Crow, Moving Units, and Teddy Riley, just to name a few. Who would be your dream collaboration?
I would love to be the crazy creative catalyst with Trent Reznor grounding me in the music and sound design!! On the flip side I’d love to be the grounding force for collaboration with Lana Del Rey!!
Going back to your upcoming release, Neon Black, what other songs stand out for you besides “Night Terror Creeper”, and why?
“Shutdown”, “Break Me Out”, The Bob Dylan cover of “Masters Of War” and the most recent “Explode”. Shutdown is a co-write with Voli who co produced the song as well. He has a hip-hop running in his veins having worked with Jay-Z and J. Cole. He really understood the intent of the song to wipe the hard drive clean so to speak of the technology that supports the world we live in and to invoke an alternative of a new beginning!! Break Me Out is another collaboration with my long time band mate Donal Finn from Flash Bastard and singer actress model Nina Bergman. I hope Bob Dylan likes what I did with his song because I feel the lyrics still are relevant 56 years later. Explode was about my last break up which really motivated the completion of this album. The other songs are just as dark and broody especially “Suicide “ about my last band mate Forbes who took her own life.
You will be playing at Bar Sinister on November 16th. What can people expect from The Sweet Kill live performances?
I am prepared to go to the hospital as I give all I’ve got and leave my soul on the stage. It’s the most cathartic experience baring my heart to the best audience in Hollywood. They are so supportive and open minded I really am able to dig deep and transcend my human finitude.
What’s next for The Sweet Kill?
I am looking into festivals over seas and nationally to spread the good word of the epic darkness giving birth to the light of hope for all those experiencing the human condition.
Watch the video for Night Terror Creeper
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