The Maniac Agenda is one of those musical projects that cares little about boundaries. Based in Philadelphia, their highly energetic and unique style mixes Rock with electronic music and has been gathering fans from all over the globe. Read more about what drives them and what they plan for the future in our exclusive interview:
How would you describe your style to someone who has not heard you before?
Hello! Antonio “S.A.T.” aka Ohmanac from The Maniac Agenda here. I would have to describe The Maniac Agenda sound as face melting, boss battle music “that plays when you finally meet that BIG robot that is trying to kick your behind” type of Electronic Rock. It is a musical shish kabob! We throw in whatever we want really which usually ends up being a hybrid of one of the bass music/ EDM genres such as Drum and Bass, Trap, Glitchhop, Dubstep, Complextro, Psytrance and then fusing it with with Rock and Metal.
Strangely enough my personal taste leans towards hiphop/triphop, soul, and classic rock which creates an interesting dynamic fused with my brother who comes from a metal/industrial background. This combo gives us our signature sound.
On your website, you mention that you “blur the lines of the producer, DJ and rock band”. How does that reflect in the way that you make music?
In the beginning of The Maniac Agenda we tried to make tracks that translate well for publishing, DJ sets at clubs/festivals, and we can play live so our productions could have a dynamic reach.
When we first started it was hard to accomplish this all in each track These days we threw out the rule book and set it on fire. During the rule book burning, we make whatever we are feeling and try to make it be as amazing as possible.
One goal in pretty much all the music we make is to make you feel something and invoke some type of emotion.
What are your biggest inspirations?
First and foremost I would have to say The Maniac Agenda eventually came to be because my brother and me going to see The Prodigy live. We were blown away by the experience we were convinced we should take a crack at making electronic rock music together.
Some of our other influences included System of a Down, Rage Against the Machine, Celldweller, Destroid, Portishead, Massive Attack, Rob Dougan, Pretty Lights, Infected Mushroom, Bassnectar, Gramatik, The Misfits, and VnV Nation.
Another big influence was playing playing the Camp Bisco music festival which really helped infuenced our musical direction
Which of your tracks are you most proud of and why?
Wow that is tough cause each song is like its own thing. However, I have to go with a song called “A Beautiful Struggle” this song has been a struggle to finish as it really never has been “officially” released , but it was leaked and has been in two movies and was one of the key elements that influenced us working on the Metal Gear Rising Sound OST.
There is much history to “A Beautiful Struggle” as in our career it felt like struggle coming up, but it was beautiful at the same time. I feel this tracks capture the emotion perfectly. Listen to the leaked version from 2012 here:
Some of my other favorites:
The Metal Gear Rising OST was definitely one of the highlights. As for other remixes, our Halo 4
Remix and Let it Die Starset (Maniac Agenda Remix) are good ones to check out.
Apart from making music, you are also creating producer packs. How does that process
work? How do you decide what is useful for other producers?
The most obvious way is if I’m in the studio working and I come across something I have to do often then I make a note of it Also if there are types of packs or sounds I find myself using again and again then I make note of it to included similar things in future packs.
Another way is we just ask our followers! We sometimes do posts on our socials networks and get feedback from our followers. We also have a questionnaire on our website people fill out the kinds of things they want. Finally, for many of the packs we have deals in place with other
producers or companies to distribute them via our website. Some of these producers/companies we seek out and others happen to come to us. We give out lot of free packs as well.
Listen to the packs and download free test packs here: http://www.maniacmusic.net/production-packs
What is the local music scene in Philadelphia like?
The Philly music scene is very eclectic. You have you traditional venues that host a series of national and regional acts to choose from. Philly has this amazing event called Music Church. This event/workshop/party all in one. This is a jam session at one of my favorite Studio “The Boom Room.”Anyone who is a musian will love this: More on these events here:
However my personal favorite are in the secret underground parties in abandoned warehouses and stuff that you only know about if you get word of it by word of mouth. Philly is a very musical city and should be on your bucket list.
What are your plans for the future?
The Maniac Agenda is currently producing for others and working with music publishers making music for TV, movies, and video games, and looking to release some original music in the future. We are each kinda doing our own thing right now.
Dennis has been going in singing everyday and playing keyboard to get on a whole other level. Leo Rizzo formerly of The Maniac Agenda started a awesome new band called Molecular. Rizzo’s project is straight up psychedelic metal with deep occult type lyrics. I’ll leave some links to his project below.
As for me, I been making TONS of interesting music! I just started a new project Plush City with female vocalist and producer Lauren Stone. If you like triphop, Bass music, a bit of a grunge edge then you will love Plush City. We just released a Dark cover of Nirvana’s Heart Shaped Box you can stream and download here!
I just started my solo project called Ohmanac. I’m slowly building it, but hope to make it very personal and intimate experience. The vibe is kinda electronic rock, but leans more towards the hiphop and psychedelic side. You can stream and download my song “Everytime” from that project here:
And here is a really trippy orchestal IDM track form the Ohmanac project: