Cemeteries is the solo project of Kyle Reigle, whose music is a combination of dream pop and gothic rock, capturing nostalgic or dreamlike feelings. A product of his Buffalo, New York environment, he recorded his debut album, The Wilderness, over the course of six months and then explored the electronic soundscapes he formed in a side-project, Camp Counselors. He is an artist to watch out for, creating a unique sound which would fit perfectly in a vintage record player on any given Sunday.
Can you tell us about your background and how you got involved in music?
Kyle Reigle: I spent most of my life in Western New York and moved to Portland a few years ago. The stereo was always on in my house growing up so I realized pretty quickly that I wanted to get involved with music. Throughout school, I learned all of the instruments that I could wrap my head around. Then I made and played in a few different bands.
When did you form Cemeteries?
Kyle Reigle: When I was out of high school, I had a lot of rough ideas that I re-recorded and released. I never intended for it to be a serious project and didn’t like the idea of using my name, so I released it as Cemeteries. I put out a few more singles that people liked and eventually made The Wilderness/formed a band. The recording process is still mostly me, but I almost always write with a band in mind.
I love the sense of nostalgia in most of your music, is this something you are drawn to, do you know why?
Kyle Reigle: I am. A bit too much sometimes. As a person, I’m starting to move away from it, not dwelling on much and just being present. I think it’s an easy feeling to capture with music and film, but there needs to be a point. I’m working on a record as my Camp Counselors alias that tackles the negative sides of nostalgia and how it can completely ruin lives, but it’s the most nostalgic-sounding thing that I’ve ever done.
Do you believe technology is helping musicians or is there a quality that is getting lost in ones work?
Kyle Reigle: I doubt I’d be where I am creatively without technology. It is a little scary feeling lost in the shuffle of everything, considering anyone can make music now, but that pushes me to make the best songs I can. I’m completely self-taught when it comes to recording and I’m sure my songs would sound better if I had used studios and professional producers, but they’d feel completely different and possibly lifeless. The technological side never really feels like a chore, it’s a long but fun process.
What is the first instrument you learned to play?
Kyle Reigle: There was a piano in our house so I took lessons when I was pretty young.
Are there periods in a year in which you aren’t making music? Is this difficult to cope with?
Kyle Reigle: Sometimes, but I’ve been working pretty much nonstop lately. I haven’t been writing a lot, I’m in the stage of organizing and completing everything that I’ve recorded in the last two years.
Have there been moments in which you’ve felt challenged by the pursuit of your dreams?
Kyle Reigle: Definitely. I still do. Whether it’s dealing with the reality of the music world or just finding the motivation and positivity to finish a project. But if I quit something, the passion always comes back, sometimes in ways that shape whatever I’m working on into something I never intended. I think the challenge is important to keep things interesting.
Is there a song that you’ve created that captures exactly what you wanted it to?
Kyle Reigle: I think it’s either Empty Camps or Sodus. They’re next to each other on that record, so they sort of blend together. I really like my Empty Camps lyrics. The song is pretty simple itself, but vocally it’s my favorite to play live. Sodus is more about the structure. Even if it was an instrumental, I’m glad that the song tells a story all on its own.
What has been the most challenging aspect of creating music?
Kyle Reigle: Lately, it’s finding the best way to say the things that I want to say. It’s hard for me to present my points in obvious ways. I like vagueness. I want the listener to figure things out for themselves, but the meaning can get lost that way. The great thing about music, is you have this whole other world of tone and texture to help shape your story and ideas.
Thank you for talking with us Kyle. Can you share with us what you have in mind for the future of Cemeteries?
Kyle Reigle: I have a few projects I’ve been “almost done” with for a while now. Some of them are albums. I don’t really know what’s going to come out first, but it shouldn’t be too long.
- To listen to Cemeteries, you can visit: https://
Interviewed by Daniella Alma