Michael Rogel says he began his music career began shortly after his discovery of the music of Tupac Shakur. As he matured he became more influenced by Industrial techno and House. He’s been nominated twice in the New Mexico Music Awards and won for Best Electronica song in 2016. Check out our interview with him below.
Tell us a little bit about yourself. What’s the story behind Michael Rogel and how would you describe your sound?
Well, I’m originally from New Mexico but moved to Los Angeles fifteen years ago to attend Loyola Marymount. While in school I became very inspired by Tupac’s career which led me to begin making beats. After working with hip hop for a while I gradually became more influenced by the industrial style of the Prodigy and NIN. I went through a couple difficult years and actually gave up for a while. Eventually I knew I didn’t care about doing anything else and in 2011 after moving back to New Mexico, I started from scratch. A few years later I was nominated in the New Mexico Music Awards a couple times and won for best Electronica song in 2016. I now feel my style is more influenced by Enigma, Trent Reznor’s recent film score work, deadmau5 and Nero. I like choirs and religious sounds with industrial leads and house beats.
What motivates you and inspires your music, aesthetic and vibe?
I was very inspired by Tupac’s career; his concrete rose sound, and I am inspired by sacred music. I felt Tupac could drive music in a way that no one ever has.
I hear a lot of classic house and techno in tracks Burned and Out of Time but for me your music is richer and has more texture either of those more minimal sounds. Where do you see your music in relation to those genres?
I love tons of house and techno but I can’t do straight beats. I want the ups and downs; the tension and release.
Is your music designed to be listen to, danced to or both?
Some of it may be hard to dance to…. I suppose some tracks will be dance some won’t.
You’ve recently made the switch to being a fulltime musician – how is that going for you? It must be rewarding and challenging at times!
It’s wonderful. I could never do anything else.
What’s up next for Michael Rogel? Any upcoming gigs, is there new music on the horizon, other projects?
I’d like to try different remixes. I make an original piece every day but I’d like to find more collabs. Then worry about gigs.. and go from there.