Michael Rault is a singer-songwriter from Edmonton, Alberta whose music is heavily indebted to the psych-pop of the '60s and '70s. His new single, “Sleep With Me,” showcases his penchant for the sun-splashed melodies and woozy guitar licks that dominated late-20th century counterculture and its descendants (The Olivia Tremor Control, Tame Impala, et al.). As the song bounces toward its end, Rault introduces a string section—first a rumbling cello, then a light and airy violin—that elevates the sound into the perfect encapsulation of a summer day. The music video, too, combines grainy film stock and DIY collage techniques to form a fitting homage to the nostalgic, washed-out colors of the era. You can catch Micahel Rault tonight at Alphaville with BOYTOY and Baby Jay.
Adhoc: There’s a lot of '60s and '70s-style psych and pop in your sound. What draws you to that kind of music?
Michael Rault: Well, I'm a guitar player and I was raised by a family of musicians who came up playing in bands throughout the '60s and ;70s. So, just by the nature of my background and the instrument I was originally drawn to as a young kid, I was naturally predisposed to the sounds of the '60s and '70s. Being a guitar player in 2017 almost immediately marks you as a retro artist, it seems. I'm also a fan of live music, the and live feel, and I tend to spend more time playing instruments than I do messing around with my computer software, just because I enjoy it more as a way to pass the time. So, I think that the methods I'm attracted to and have become well-versed in automatically put me into a similar space to where artists from the '60s and '70s were coming from. As far as the psychedelic element goes, I think I am interested in surrealism and fantasy in a lot of different forms, so it comes out in my music in different ways.
Are there any influences/musicians you’re listening to that would surprise fans?
Maybe? I'm not too sure what would be surprising, but I listen to a lot of different music. I was really deep into Alice Coltrane's Universal Concioussness album for large parts of this past year. I also have been obsessed with the first four 10cc albums lately. I suppose I generally am drawing inspiration from the roots and offshoots of early 20th century American music, but I'm not as constrained by particular decades or genres as people might think.