Comatose Rose Magazine by Azriel J. Knight
May 2003

Starting your own record label is a huge undertaking. What made you decide to?

K: Blind faith and a suggestion from Oneiroid Psychosis that I actually thought about for a year, built up resources, and followed through with. Oneiroid Psychosis was so impressed by my early promotions for the Azoic that they suggested I start a record label. So, after a year of building up more distributors and all I could, I decided to try it (thinking it would be a temporary thing). After 4 years now, I'm still "addicted" and even more passionate about music. After all, Nilaihah is built on passionate music. I'm still amazed at how much Nilaihah has grown, yet still have a long way to go.

Do you have many people having trouble pronouncing the label name? Can you give us a phonetic spelling of it so we may pronounce it better? *smile*

K: phonetics: nil-EYE-ah. 'Nilaihah' was a fallen angel who wrote poetry. I thought that fit, but like I said, I never thought I'd have a record label at the time or one that would last. And yes, people do have a hard time pronouncing it. Sometimes I wish it were easier, but I think people are intrigued and it means more once they realize what it stands for.

A day job, a band, and a record label. How do you handle it all?

K: That's actually not all of it, but I've always been a work-a-holic and have somehow been able to handle 10 things at once. I probably work on average 70+ hours a week, if not more, so it's a labor of love. I have to be busy though and have my hands in several different projects. It doesn't mean I'm not swamped and stressed, but between my record label interns, family, friends, and my boyfriend, it helps me sort through it all. I do hope Nilaihah continues to grow, both with staff and releases... :)

You've recently launched a snazzy new design on your dot com, how come you waited so long before doing so?

K: If you only knew how many times and designs I'd gone through before now! :) I never had the time to complete them or couldn't commit to a design so I finally hired Nick Garland of Re>generation Magazine to help me design a new site. We collaborated for several months, until we both felt good about the direction and design. We are all very happy with the new look and have been receiving positive comments.

Choose ONE song off a band (other than your own) that really touches in some way deep down, and why it does so.

K: Tough question. I feel so strongly about all the releases on a personal level or I wouldn't release them. But, if I had to chose from a personal experience point, I think "Blind" by Backlash. "Visualize your faith for me and purify my mind. "Cast your light on me and make my eyes go blind." "I can feel your pain, because I'm suffering too." It's just an amazingly personal and deep song with very poetic lyrics. It hits on a lot of emotions all at once and I think that is a very hard thing to accomplish.

I'll also have to give credit to a few other tracks, if I may...

Null Device has a track called "I Probably Know You" that has always touched me lyrically. "I probably know you better than you think I do. I possibly know you better than you'd like." It talks about feelings we, as humans, all go through and is letting us know that others share in those experiences, whether we feel comforted by that or not.

Fiction 8's track "Let Go" is a very strong song about relationships and moving on afterward. It's talking to someone who is having a hard time being mature and "letting go". I hope it offers closure for many.

Distorted Reality has a track I especially like lyrically. It's called "Your Only Jewel". Too often people take those closest to them for granted, especially in relationships, and lose their "only jewel".

Dissonance has too many for me to really mention. It's an amazing album dealing a lot with insecurities, frustrations, consuming emotions, second guessing ourselves, and again, relationships.

All of these tracks (and bands) offer such a huge view into each of the writers soul and deep into their emotions that it's hard not to relate in some way. We've all been in both good and bad relationships/friendships or are struggling to find ourselves at one point in time, so I think the themes are very relevant to all. For me, music can be a therapy of sorts. To let you know others have gone through similar situations and that you are not alone. I think each band on Nilaihah Records also offers inspiration and a positive message at the same time. Ultimately, I look for bands who write with passion, both lyrically and musically.

Mike Ventarola, isn't he great?!

K: Yes! He's really taken Nilaihah Records (and The Azoic) to new heights. Without him, I wouldn't be where I am today and owe a lot to Mike and Hidden Sanctuary. And if you thought I worked a lot...

Your releases are available all over the world, do you accomplish this independently or with the assistance of a distro company?

K: Both. I work with several distributors, but I usually contact them myself. So, it's a lot of 'behind the scenes' work you see and help from our list of distributors (which are all listed on the new website).

When will we see another Azoic release?

K: In June, The Azoic are releasing a CD single for their track "Conflict" with remixes by Iris, Negative Format, Massiv in Mensch and others, TBA soon. In the fall, expect the new full length, 'illuminate' to be released with several surprises too. Hey, we want to keep you guessing...