Maynard James Keenan Discusses Donkey Punch the Night
|See more photos in this exclusive Phoenix New Times slideshow.|
I don't know, I feel like I'm kind of torn. There's two sides of my brain fighting with each other. There's something about connecting with that physical piece of property, and also things you don't know about. When you download the song, there's nothing. Sometimes it comes with a booklet, sometimes it comes with an image, but usually it doesn't.
It's just this disconnected thing that you can't touch and feel and experience. [There are] other nuances to the songs. Some images and artwork that are totally connected and related to the song you're hearing, and you make the connection by seeing that image, and it completes the joke or completes the thought; that's a little disconnected.
However, as an independent project -- no funding, no record label, no underwriters, nothing -- the whole digital route is a lot more sustainable. You're not wasting a lot of paper or plastic products, except for the manufacturing of computers, which apparently go out of date every week. Thank you very much, Apple. But you're able to get that music out there and have a direct connection to who you're selling it to -- and actually fund your project. There's a disconnect between people not buying music and not understanding why [bands] go away.
There are people who are like monkeys in a cage just hitting the coke button. They don't really get that for [musicians and artists] to do these things, they have to fund them. They have to have something to pay the rent. You know those "fund my project sites?"
Kickstarter, Indie Go Go, yeah. There are a number of sites.
Those things have to exist in order for people to get to the next level of something. People always ask us to bring Puscifer to Europe, but that's not free. I'm not really willing to lose my house over a failed European tour, you know? [Laughs] That doesn't really make any sense. So there has to be a happy medium [for bands to make money, tour, and record] without having some artless, soulless, heartless funding person getting in the middle and fucking up the art.
Does that mean more than just creating music?
The new world of bands surviving is not just putting out a T-shirt or CD. You have to turn to weird stuff. We just released a limited-edition giclée of an image [designer and photographer] Tim Cadiente and I put together, and we're being criticized because it's 250 bucks. But if you go online, Mickey Mouse giclées are 800 bucks. Am I Mickey Mouse?