Ilan Rubin has played for Paramore, he’s part of Angels & Airwaves and he’s part of Nine Inch Nails. That alone earns him a lot of credibility. He’s an amazing drummer but he’s equally capable with multiple instruments. He cares passionately about his work with AVA and NiN, but he also has his own solo project called The New Regime. With The New Regime Rubin recently dropped a new album called Heart Mind Body & Soul - it’s his fifth album with the project and it’s his best work to date. Alternative Addiction recently talked with Rubin about the new album, his work in The New Regime, and his ability to play literally everything for project.
“It’s a planned thing,” said Rubin of why he plays all the instruments/music for The New Regime in the studio. “The inception of The New Regime revolves around me doing it all myself. Everything that’s been released with it has been released that way. It’s the way I prefer to work on my own music. I’ve spent my entire life playing music, working at these instruments, and learning. It’s the best way for me to express whatever it is that I want to achieve musically. I can work quickly, and I can execute whatever it is that I have in mind. It’s a very satisfying process for me.”
Rubin records all the music for The New Regime, and he writes all of it too. Neither part of the process is stressful for the multi-instrumentalist but writing seems to be a little more of a relaxed approach for Rubin when he’s working on music for his own project.
“It’s always different. The writing process isn’t something I sit down and just do. It comes up from either playing the guitar, playing the piano, or just experimenting with one of the other instruments I have. An idea will present itself as being interesting enough to pursue as a complete song. That’s always been fun for me. If I had to sit down and force myself to write a song in an afternoon, I could certainly do it, but it wouldn’t be as fun as chasing the idea until it forms all the way. Writing isn’t intense for me, it’s fun. Once I latch on to an idea that’s good enough to be a song, I don’t let go until it’s done.”
According to Rubin the most challenging part of The New Regime music has nothing to do with making the music itself – it comes in the form of promotion. Rubin talked about that challenge and some of the monotony that goes into music when you’re a breaking artist.
“The challenge doesn’t lie with creating or executing any of this. It’s everything else. You want people to love it and you want the whole thing to continually grow. There are moments where you can feel the momentum building and then there are other times when you’re waiting on things to happen. There’s a lot of boring, business elements to music that can be interesting depending on the size of your band, but when you’re really trying to break these things feel a bit dull. It’s not the exciting aspect of creating. You spend all of this time getting it together then you have to figure out the best way to put it out, then you have to figure out the best way to continually breathe life into it so that it gets where you want to get it to go. That’s difficult, that’s not pinned down to a science. There are so many things in play, it’s hard to figure out the best way to move forward with that.”
Rubin has been a touring musician for years, and he’s toured with a number of bands. We also talked with Rubin about the playing his own music live compared to playing someone else’s.
“It’s a completely different experience,” began explaining the New Regime mastermind. “Obviously, playing guitar and singing is very different than being in the back and playing drums. I love them both for different reasons. As a drummer, I get to zone out and beat the shit out of some drums for a few hours. I get to just pay attention to the music. On the flip side of that, it’s really intoxicating to be up front playing – especially when the show is going well. You’re up there playing and you’re the point of communication between everybody. Singing is different too, it’s still very much you but it’s different than playing an instrument. When you play an instrument, you can hide behind that a little bit. As a singer, it’s you. Getting to do both on stage and being able to play songs that I’ve written is a great feeling. I really enjoy it.”
New Regime’s Heart Mind Body & Soul is available now, lookout for more from The New Regime on Alternative Addiction soon.