Sev: Hello Dorian, it’s nice to talk to you again. In your last interview we talked about your single, “Life is Hard” that came out then, this time you got a whole album to show us. But let’s talk about the title song first. What’s the message of “The Line”?
Dorian: Hello, glad to be back! The title track “The Line” is sort of a double entendre. While writing this record I had many doubts and got frustrated a lot with the limitations I faced, in resources or time. The line I’m talking about in the song is sort of the mental limitation or definition that we give to everything. From when we are born, expectations are pushed on to us. Will we go to a good school? Will we get a good job? Will we marry well, or find the right partner at least. All these goals are set depending on where you come from or the type of social circles you evolve in. Their based on a collective point of view. Then ironically, with all this control that we need to have in order to achieve those goals, most of us can’t help but wanting to lose it. Go crazy, party, drink, do drugs, make bad decisions. So “The Line” refers to the finish line you so desperately want to reach in life, the limits you want to test and also the line of coke you take to forget how hard the fight is to get there. Just generally speaking, the song tackles the hypocrisy of the system.
Sev: Now you’ve always had some e-guitar elements in your music, but in this “The Line” it has become very prominent. Are you slowly becoming a Dave Grohl? 😉
Dorian: Haha, I would love to have a full band as cool as Foo Fighters! To be honest, I listened to a lot of Rock music growing up. A few of the classics, but also a lot of new bands such as Evanescence or Nightwish, there’s just something to the riff of an electric guitar that is incredibly sexy to me. Queen is obviously a major influence in that vibe, my mom used to play the CDs on and on at home. “The Line” and “Sinsation” are actually my absolute favourite songs I’ve ever written up to date. It’s definitely a direction I feel comfortable in and doing these tracks live gives me a rush of adrenaline, the crowd also usually get wild. Rock music has fallen out in terms of popularity, but at gigs people just go mad for it. Doing a few Prides this summer, I was a bit of the odd one out. But I keep things camp and my music is always rooted in pop so it usually goes down well. Moreover, the sight of my butt in those tight leather shorts is usually a crowd pleaser haha.
Sev: “The Line” isn’t the only new song on the album. What else do you have in store for us?
Dorian: So so many things haha. It’s basically a pop record with a few variations down the spectrum of pop. The album is a reflection of my life journey, before and after moving to London. Let’s go track by track:
The album starts off with “Midnight” a moody electro pop ballad. It’s about that little voice in your head telling you “something’s just not right”… But you gotta suck it up and go through life right? It’s in the hours of the night that I’m most vulnerable and I contemplate a lot, hence the title. Midnight is also a transition between night and day. There’s a sense of change.
Then “Oversexual” comes in and it’s a straight up Pop record. I actually wrote it when I was in the closet and dating a woman. It was my little fantasy… I was a shy boy and was obese up to 20 years old so I didn’t have much confidence in my body or my capacity to be sexy. That song was a bit of a therapy. It empowered me… I didn’t know it would become a self fulfilled prophecy haha. I’ve explored sexuality a lot, my coming out process was learning to know what I liked. The Fetish scene has been my biggest discovery and I’m definitely on the kinky side of things. The track is about that moment you lock eyes with a boy in the club. You flirt and then you go to have sex with him… Any kind of sex. As the lyrics go: “Vanilla, Paprika, any flava you wanna”… But I prefer Paprika for sure. That boy better tie me up haha.
“Life Is Hard” is the second track on the album and my latest single. The music video was shot in The Bunker, an underground sex dungeon and features many of my talented friends such as drag artist, now wig stylist with their own brand “WigChapel”, Hollie Would. The song’s an uplifting anthem about taking all the shit life throws at you and still holding your ground… I came here to stay… And slay bitch! Haha it’s the silliest and funnest track on the album.
“Slave To Love” is also on the electro pop side but it’s more of a moody ballad. I wanted it next to the previous track because today, it’s all about sex before love and I love that. You date, bang and only after you might fall in love. No virgin until marriage bullshit. This song is a little dark and is basically about addiction in any form. We’re all slaves of some sort… am I right? wink wink haha
Then you have my favourite 2 tracks “The Line” and “Sinsation”. The latter, I wrote as a rock anthem to LGBT youth. It’s an aggressive middle finger to the world. I included my life motto in it “ The only rule is not to let them fuck you like a bitch, unless you like it like a bitch!” It’s a cheeky way of saying that you make your own rule, that there is no set rules and you are alone with your choices, nobody has the right to tell you otherwise. In the music video, I used archive footage from early prides and iconic moments such as the speech of Sylvia Rivera in 1973. It is important to know your history. If we are free today it’s because so many people before us fought for those rights. It’s something young people like me tend to forget.
The album closes with “Where Do I Go From Here?” an epic orchestral ballad. I wrote this song years ago when feeling a bit blue… However, I finished writing it after a friend of mine committed suicide. The song is about that crossroad moment in your life where you can make that bad decision or reach out for help. Depression is a sneaky enemy. I was not able to finish the song before this tragedy happen because only then I was able to imagine what it was like to be at that psychologically wrecking moment. Can you imagine the despair? I’ve got chills running down my spine just thinking about it. It’s very different when it’s someone you know and love. You are able to connect with the situation in a very scary way.
Sev: Wow that sure is a lot. You must have put a lot of your time and heart in these. How does your music define your life? And how much does music define your life?
Dorian: Music is everything. I love the feeling of writing more than anything. When a melody or an idea sort of start forming in your head, it’s an adrenaline rush. The journey up to the final studio track is so exciting. I wouldn’t want to do anything else. Creating is so liberating. I constantly sing in my head. I have ideas everyday, most pretty shitty or unusable but from time to time, there’ll be something to build on it. I love to see other artists and just get inspired by the mix of talent on the London scene. That’s something that’s been great since I won London Pride’s Got Talent in 2014 and got to be involved with these amazing and creative artists.
Sev: London is really a great city for that yeah. Now, we all can see that your videos have a kinky side to them and that kink is a part of you. But can you tell us a little bit more? What are some fetishes you like living out and what does a guy need to be like to get your attention?
Dorian: I wear my fetish side on my sleeve haha. I’ve been told to tone it down, but fuck that. I love the feel and look of leather. Whether it’s in full leather or even just add a little touch to your daywear. I often wear my leather harness under vest and almost always my leather waistcoat.
In terms of sexuality I think the kinky community is amazing to explore. You can create really close bond with same minded people and the rules are bent. We, as gay men, can redefine the rules for ourselves. Sexuality doesn’t respond to the same codes as in mainstream culture and it’s fantastic! I personally am attracted to BDSM and roleplay because of this aspect. It’s so liberating to completely ignore for the length of a session all the rules. No, you shouldn’t treat a person like that, no you should degrade a human being like this, no you shouldn’t enjoy seeing them drool on a gag… But that’s what is fucking sexy. It’s a fantasy we are able to express. To quote my song “Sinsation” : If the Dark is haunting you, there’s a reason. Those urges don’t mean you are a bad person, it’s a game, it’s an expression of an inner desire. And more importantly it’s consensual! So fuck the bigots 😉
As for guys that would attract me… It depends… It’s really about how they talk, move, how their whole charisma hits me. If we go down physical traits, I usually prefer older guys nicely built and with a filthy mind haha. Oh and I’m a huge ass guy. I’m obsessed with butts, nothing is sexier to me. Rimming is essential.
Sev: Thx for sharing that with us. We are almost at the end already, just one (or last two ones, to be exact) last question before we stop: What can we expect from you in the future? Have you been experimenting with some new stuff?
Dorian: I’m in the process of writing my next record. It’s going to be more “pop” and a bit less dark. It’s early on but I want to release it in 2017. Hopefully, I’ll be doing shows around in Europe. I’m already booked for Leather Pride in Bristol in October. You guys should definitely come!
I’m also looking to collaborate much more with other artists. I have a pop rock song coming out in September featuring Virginia Wright, a dragqueen who has worked with Mickey Taylor for example, I know you’ve also interviewed him recently. Check out their track “Professional”. It’s fucking cool!
Fee free to check my website for updates about gigs and new music! www.dorianreland.com. And get my album! It’s great to play while having wild sex! 😉
Sev: I am looking forward to hear that 🙂 Thank you for you time Dorian, it was as great as always talking to you.