PALACE, the brainchild of Swedish vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Michael Palace, returns with an excellent new melodic rock album, "Rock And Roll Radio". Heavily influenced by the imagery and sounds of the 80s, as well as a certain video game, Palace delivers a massive AOR/melodic rock sound like you've never heard before. Swirling keys, layers of guitars and fast moving 80s themed melodic rock is what's on offer on Palace's third album. Michael Palace has accumulated a wealth of experience playing live and recording in the studio with several different acts, including First Signal, Cry Of Dawn, Erika, Hank Erix, Find Me, Jim Jidhed, Kryptonite, Big Time, Angelica, and Toby Hitchcock, just to name a few. Michael Palace first began collaborating with Frontiers as a songwriter and guitarist for First Signal and it's now time for his third solo album. Find out more about Rock and Roll Radio, video games, and free jpg's? Here's Mr. MICHAEL PALACE...
Now. I'm a massive fan of GTA Vice City and the whole "Miami Vice" vibe of the game. Listening to PALACE is like a trip to the bright neon lights of Vice City?
Me too! I've been waiting for another trip to Vice City since 2006! GTA VI better be it... I should've had Lazlow do an intro for the album! Vice City radio has been a huge inspiration!
Wicked! So it's supposed to sound exactly like in the eighties? How important is nostalgia?
My goal is to make 80's music as if it was released today. Nostalgia is key for PALACE but I'm also trying to make sure that the production doesn't fall flat in comparison to everything else being released today.
Regarding "Castaway" (the only song I've heard so far) - Really catchy and I couldn't help thinking about your AOR and also UK artist Nik Kershaw? No?
Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it. I believe Nik Kershaw's "Wouldn't It Be Good" is on the Vice City soundtrack? The hours I've spent out there have surely left their mark.
Kindly tell us something about the writing process and what you're trying to capture on the record.
I usually noodle around with an acoustic first and hum a bit until I find a decent hook and a basic shape for a song. Then I sit down at the computer and start recording. But it's different every time. Sometimes I find a cool synth patch that inspires a whole song. When writing stuff for PALACE I'm always looking for that feeling you get at the end of a Rocky movie (spoiler alert), when he wins and the theme song kicks in.
I thought Video killed the Radio star?
...pictures came and broke my heart.
What inspired you to write a song about Eleonora?
Eleonora - my girlfriend, soul mate and best friend!
This is your first time behind the desk. What's the secret behind a good production? Did you learn any tricks from Daniel Flores? (The Murder of My Sweet, etc.)
I learned most of what I know from Daniel! Surprisingly the secret behind a good production is the songwriting and arrangement. I've picked up a lot of cool tricks from Flores but the most valuable one has been about maintaining balance in your life and making sure to nurture your relationships with people close to you and not spending all of your waking time living and breathing music.
Plenty of swirling keys? How important are keyboards vs. guitars in your final mix?
I treat both as pieces of the whole puzzle. Some songs call for more guitar, some need more swirling keys. Not every song needs a guitar solo.
What about the album's artcover? Are you pleased with the artwork? To be honest, it's a WTF moment? Flashback attack from the late 90's free jpg's. :-)
Wait till you see the booklet! I like how it turned out and a WTF moment is better than no reaction at all. What can I say, I'm a 90's kid.
Plenty of bands/artists at Frontiers. Do you feel like a priority signing and as if they're out there working for you?
I'm here talking to you so I'm sure that they know what they are doing.
Merry Xmas. If there's anything you'd like to add, say, please do:
Merry xmas! Thank you for the fun interview, I love that you brought up Vice City. The album is out in a couple of days as I'm writing this and I'm extremely excited for everyone to hear it! I wanna thank everyone who has been supporting PALACE and pre-ordered the album.
If interested, here's the RockUnited.com - GTA Vice City- article that I (Urban) wrote about its music.
Interview by: Urban 'Wally' Wallstrom