This November, Macpherson Wiles, from the band Minus World, will join the list of more than 80 artists on stage at Nova Scotia Music Week.
The event is slated for Nov. 8 to 11, and the main host will be White Point Beach Resort.
“I really started out doing arrangements and compositions just on my computer,” says Macpherson Wiles.
He says in the beginning he wrote a lot of music but didn’t become proficient with an instrument until later. Macpherson Wiles’ entrance to the musical world involved becoming part of an online community and writing music for people’s independently developed videogames.
“Eventually I got over my fear of singing and decided that I wanted to do something in a pop-rock kind of vein, so that’s kind of where I am right now,” he says.
The simplest way to describe Minus World, says Macpherson Wiles, is electronic-rock. He says some people call it dance music or Intelligent Dance Music (IDM).
“But Minus World was never intended to be a dance band. It was always intended to be 50-50 fusion rock and roll and electronic music that’s kind of making waves right now,” says Macpherson Wiles.
Once Macpherson Wiles has words and piano chords for a song, he puts it on the computer to write arrangement pieces on top.
NoteWorthy Composer is what MacPherson Wiles says he uses to produce his songs.
“It’s just a really super simple program,” he says.
According to Macpherson Wiles, about 180 bands apply to Nova Scotia Music Week, of which about 150 are considered for showcases. In the end, though, there are fewer than 100 spots.
Macpherson Wiles found out about his successful application to the annual music festival when someone called and asked him to play at the showcasing announcement at The Astor Theatre, which happened Aug. 7.
Flabbergasted. That’s the word Macpherson Wiles uses to describe how he felt when he found out he would be showcasing at Nova Scotia Music Week.
“I’ve been in a few different bands, and Minus World has definitely applied for Nova Scotia Music Week a few times, so it’s nice to finally get in, especially when it’s in my hometown,” he says.
The day before Macpherson Wiles got the call, he says he had decided it might be time to start from scratch and rebuild.
“I’m completely prepared to perform solo,” he says.
“There’s a lot of hard work, and there are a lot of questions to be answered, too, when it comes to exactly how it’s going to be pulled off, but that’s the exciting thing – is digging yourself a hole and trying to climb back out.”
Minus World was born at the end of 2010 and has released an EP. In September the band is slated to release a new song and B-side
“And that’s going to be a precursor hopefully to a full-length album that we’ll be releasing mid-way next year,” he says.
The name Minus World is a reference to the Nintendo game Super Mario Bros.
In the underground level, 1-2, the videogame character can pass through a wall.
“But the game doesn’t know you’re there yet, and then you go down the pipe, and the game doesn’t know what to do with that, so it puts you in an underwater world,” says Macpherson Wiles.
“It’s endless, and you basically go around in this world until you die – until the timer runs out and kills you.”
This became known as the minus world.