Cradle Of Filth keyboardist/vocalist Lindsay Schoolcraft is unleashing her first solo album, Martyr. Schoolcraft gives us the lowdown on her collaboration with ex-Evanescence drummer Rocky Gray, the new album, tour plans, her musical background, Cradle Of Filth and more.
Chad Bowar: Why was this the right time for your first solo album?
Lindsay Schoolcraft: There really is no “right time” to release an album. It was more the fact that the release was pushed off too long due to waiting around for a label to pick me up. But once we set a date and got everything in motion releasing this music in October only seemed right. It’s a very “end of summer meets beginning of autumn” sounding album.
Describe the songwriting process for Martyr.
Rocky Gray contacted me on the new year of 2016 and we got chatting. Turns we were big fans of one another. A few days after the initial conversation he asked me if I wanted to start working on music together. After a minor fan-girl freak out on my end, we got straight to it. Every song creation was such a smooth process. We were mainly on the same page on a lot of ideas and creative directions. Guitar and drums are not my forte so he completed me in that department. After we completed the cover of The Cure’s “Lullaby” within the first month we got onto other original compositions right away. By the beginning of 2017 we already had seventeen songs to work with and a few got cut, but they could be used for future releases!
What will be your strongest memory of the recording of the album?
I think in those early days of when Rocky sent me the demos for “Saviour,” “Dangerous Game,” “Where I Fall” and “See The Light.” I was so excited to hear them and got right to work on them. I was in my old childhood home before my parents sold it and they were away on vacation. I spent the whole night in the study with my cat Max (R.I.P.). I haven’t felt like that since working on my first EP back in 2012.
What lyrical subjects do you tackle?
This album tells tales of many silent struggles I had gone through while composing it: a close call with cancer, almost losing loved ones and my singing voice due to my issues with drinking, fighting for my life against depression and anxiety, and ultimately learning to love myself first which lead me to learning how to become entirely comfortable in my own skin.
There is a reoccurring person I wrote a lot of these songs about on this album. I felt a love a deep connection for this person like one I’ve never felt before, but unfortunately at the time I was in a terrible place mentally and because of this I pushed them away and almost lost them from my life entirely. And don’t get me wrong, they weren’t perfect themselves which made thing a little more turbulent. But that is what “Blood From a Stone” along with many other songs are about and I’m sure many people can relate to it: being frustrated with this person, but also being extremely frustrated with yourself. And because of this feeling utterly hopeless about everything while drowned in your emotions and that person not being there anymore to help you figure yourself out.
My conclusion to this song is the track “My Way Without You” where I see things for what they truly are, let go of my old habits and this person, and find my own personal liberation. Though a lot of anger comes across in this track towards that person, I did eventually learn how to love someone unconditionally because of them and that is one of the most invaluable lessons you can learn to live harmoniously on this planet with others no matter how messed up or broken they may be.
What led you to go the independent route for the album release?
Once I got in touch with Savvy Musician Academy and got working with them they showed me I could become my own digital record label. And so I did! It’s been a lot of work, but it’s almost over now and I can release the album and get back to writing more!
What are your goals and expectations for the album?
I hope that people enjoy listening to it and it helps them get through and overcome any of their struggles in life.
How was the video shoot for “Savior”?
It was really amazing! A long day but so worth it! We started super early and finished just after 7pm that day. Rouzbeh Heydari was fantastic to work with and I’m so happy with how it came out! I didn’t know until we got home that we filmed it on the two year passing of Chester Bennington and I actually thought a lot about him that day when I was performing. I really beat up my body to make that band performance look cool and I really paid for it days after. (laughs) But no pain so gain.
How important are videos these days?
I think they are still a big thing for fans! They really want them and now that I see the distance these videos go and how much people still care about them, I plan to make as many more as possible.
Do you have any show/tour plans to support the new album?
We are definitely working on it! And we have some small plans in the work close to home for December!
How did you get started in music?
It’s been part of my entire life. I use to sing in choirs in elementary school. Then. I got really serious about it on my 15th birthday.
Who were your early influences and inspirations?
To do what I do today I owe the biggest influence to Evanescence, Kittie, Korn, The Birthday Massacre, VAST.
How did you come to join Cradle Of Filth?
It’s a long story, but let’s just say I have an imaginary lucky horseshoe somewhere up my ass.
What have you learned being a part of that band that you have been able to apply to your solo career, both musically and non-musically?
So very very much. Mainly in business in production. I’ve also learned from a lot of business mistakes I’ve seen being made. The whole writing and production side fascinates me, too. Cradle has really opened my eyes to what’s possible.
What was the last thing you binge-watched?
Season 3 of 13 Reasons Why.
What’s currently in your heavy musical rotation?
The Quest by Leah and Entity by Sidewalks and Skeletons.
Anything else you’d like to mention or promote?
I have a black metal meets classical music project called Antiqva with Xenoyr and we finally have more plans to finish writing the album! It’s exciting times for that project!
(interview published October 10, 2019)
Watch Lindsay Schoolcraft – “Saviour” Video