Guitarist Hytham Martin Interview

Hytham Martin - Guitarist/Vocalist for The Dystopian Project

Hytham Martin was raised by wolves in the outback of Dublin/Ireland. His special abilities include Power-Drinking (while standing on his head) and the ability to see time.

Interested In: Jamming, Playing Shows, Songwriting, Studio Recording

The Dystopian Project are an Irish band based in Dublin, formed in Summer 2013. Drawing from a wide and eclectic range of musical influence’s and backgrounds, The Dystopian Project create music to entertain and evoke emotion with energy driven riffs, surrounded by beautiful and haunting soundscapes infused with complex intertwining vocal harmonies.

Guitarist Hytham Martin Interview

Scott - Hi Hytham, thank you for agreeing to do an interview w/ my website Guitarz ... Give our readers a short but descriptive label for your style of music.

Hi Scott... (deep breath) I would say, and every member of the band has their own opinion, that I would class TDP as Alternative Rock, bordering on Progressive Rock; peppered with Hard Rock/Metal elements (release breath).

Scott - Where do you live, play live, and record?

I'm from Dublin, Ireland; living in a little place called Kimmage... TDP, at the moment, play in Dublin, however big things are coming in 2018 – so watch this space! I record in TDPHQ in Dublin. This is where we write, arrange, record & produce all of our material.

Scott - Tell us about your Official Video "Ashes of Time"... There's some great vocals, tight guitar playing, epic drumming and kool soloing going on there.

Well, Ashes of Time was actually the first track we wrote after the release of our first EP ‘Death Leaves an Echo’. This track was a big change in direction for us in both style and substance. It's also the first time we decided to attempt a live-style performance video; we try to do something different every time. This, for us, is a way to keep everything fresh... The last thing we want to see is a re-hash of the same format time & time again.

Vocally, it's actually the first time where we attempted the three-part harmony that's so prevalent in the ‘Paradigm’ EP. Prior to that, for the most part, we'd sat fairly comfortably with the male (lower) and female (upper) octave, combined with a middle harmony; either 3rd, 5th or 9th depending upon the underlying music! However, sitting too comfortably is something that we try and avoid in TDP; we constantly try to push the boundaries of what it is we are writing... Being uncomfortable makes great music.

Darrin (drums) and Phil (guitar) are both machines – the best of the best for me – so yes, the drumming and solo’s are top-notch; however I do enjoy playing my humble guitar melody at the beginning of the track!

April 2015 saw the release of their debut EP "Death Leaves an Echo" which was met with wide critical acclaim. A diverse collection of songs, it showed the bands early promise and progressive rock leanings.

For the band, 2017 brings their sophomore release "Paradigm", which further explores their progressive roots. Traditional keyboard sounds have been augmented by the addition of sound design to the song structure, while maintaining the strong vocal harmonies that make The Dystopian Project stand out among their peers.

Always challenging the perceived norms of how things should be done, The Dystopian Project continue to grow and develop, cementing their burgeoning status as a powerful and exciting creative unit.

Scott - How many EPs do you have out? Names and where to buy?

We have two EP’s out at the moment. Both ‘Death Leaves and Echo’ and ‘Paradigm’ are available on Bandcamp, iTunes, Amazon, Reverbnation and pretty much more digital distributors than you could shake a stick at... It's our plan in 2018 to make our releases available in CD and LP format which can be ordered directly from our website

Scott - Who are your major influences?

That's a tough question. From an early age it was musicians and bands like Rory Gallagher, Queen and Thin Lizzy. Then it was Faith no More, Metallica, Slayer and the more progressive metal bands like Death... Not to say that the former weren't progressive. I've always been attracted to musical novelty, so fairly soon I was looking at Mr Bungle, Rush, Dream Theatre, Anathema and in the early 2000’s bands like Opeth, Katatonia and Zero Hour.

Scott - What are you listening to these days?

Today I'm mostly listening to Tesseract, Frost*, Porcupine Tree/Steve Wilson and, my personal favourite, Circus Maximus! However I do love to listen to Within Temptation, Devin Townsend and Symphony X... There really isn't anything guitar orientated I won't listen to. For pure guitar I recommend Jon Gomm...

Scott - I also don't want to forget this... Tell us about any other things you may be in involved in or any special interest besides music that is close to your heart?

As well as being a musician, I'm also an archaeologist. I have a BA degree Archaeology and an MSc degree in Experimental Archaeology & Material Culture... I'm particularly interested in Ethnomusicology and the origins & beginnings of music in the human experience... I'm currently attempting to create a flute/whistle made from bone, a  replica of which was found in Europe dating back over 30,000 years ago... Funny thing is, it has a pentatonic scale; we've been doing this a long time it seems!

Scott - Hytham, I would like to thank you for your time and candor with our loyal readers and keep on fighting the good fight to bring us some awesome music.

Thanks so much for taking the time to listen to my band TDP... As you know it's very difficult for original/independent music to be heard amongst the cacophony of mundane corporate/pop music that seems to pervade the airwaves these days... Thanks to people like you and publications like yours, bands and musicians like us ‘can' fight the good fight! So a big thank you from TDP.


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