Having made his initial mark as co-founder of seminal British trip-hop progenitors Sneaker Pimps, Chris Corner has forged a creative identity as IAMX. His worst gig experience is truly awful and he’s hoping for a better result at Gorilla, Manchester on 15 June.
Tell us a bit about your sound and your influences.
IAMX is a melting pot of erotic, emotional electronic rock and dance music. Influences are film, architecture, cabaret and dark, hard, sexy German club culture.
How have you evolved as a musician over the years?
I founded the band Sneaker Pimps with Liam Howe, made three records with that project, then moved into the self-indulgent melancholic world of IAMX. I’ve made six IAMX studio albums, all self-produced. I started in London then moved to Berlin which had a huge influence on the IAMX sound and me as a person. I experimented a lot there, toured the world, then, around the fifth album, I had a nervous breakdown and couldn’t sleep for two years. I made the sixth album Metanoia as therapy. Now I’m calmer and happier, live in Los Angeles and am touring the world again.
Were there any alternative project names before you arrived at this one?
No. I’m pretty terrible at choosing band names so I picked something that referenced my past. The first Sneaker Pimps album was called Becoming X. When I started my solo project, I felt that I deserved to call myself IAMX.
What are you up to at the moment artistically?
Making an addendum to the last album Metanoia. Collaborating again with Sneaker Pimps and shooting music videos and stage visuals for the IAMX live shows.
How do you stand out from the crowd in a saturated industry?
Avoid the industry and create my own niche.
What’s on your rider?
Soy milk, tofu, safety pins, vodka and the daily dose of our life blood, red wine.
Tell us about your worst live show.
Somewhere in Eastern Europe, intense crowd, I took requests in the encore. Somebody shouted a song name, which I then started to play. During the performance the girl who had requested the song cut her wrists with a broken glass in her handbag at the front of the stage, screaming “I’m sorry” and then showing her bloody arms to me.