Michael A. Ruelas: Thank you! As usual, between albums I've been obsessed with learning to advance my skills and ideas in composition and technical aspects of play. This album showcases what I have learned and felt along the way, and I began the brainstorm on how to put it all together about a year and a half ago.
Michael A. Ruelas: I've morphed my sound drastically on this album to invoke a more paranormal/ghostly feel. It features many more melodic and symphonic elements, partially due to an abundance of keyboard lines. My advanced students will hopefully notice unique sets of sweeps and taps that could only be produced using my new 7-string guitar. I'm also very proud of the fact that I composed the entire album using all my own instruments, production equipment and software.
Michael A. Ruelas: Approach? Not really. Technique? Definitely. Aside from creating the right tunes to match my feelings the approach has always been "Progress is Perfection". I have spent countless hours learning and applying new music theory and techniques to challenge my abilities; I will never slow my evolutionary stride. Among my latest adventures are deep dives in to exotic scales such as the Egyptian modes.
Michael A. Ruelas: For now it's the standard: there are interviews, and then I maintain a website and a YouTube channel that features some of the journey leading up to this album. Followers can stay up-to-date by finding me on ReverbNation or Facebook where I most often drop news. I also enjoy getting the word out by playing live, and I'm always open to traditional promotion possibilities if I have the time and sanity.
Michael A. Ruelas: The scene is better than ever and it was recently my honor to perform at a show called the “Freedom in Music” project for the New Mexico School of Academics where they did indeed get a taste of the new tracks. If anybody else in the Albuquerque area wants to experience a live performance from "Paranormal Shredtivity" I'm positive they will have some chances.
Michael A. Ruelas: Though electric shred is my passion I have learned many instruments, styles and aspects of music, and as an instructor I often get requests for different areas like jazz and acoustic theory. Perhaps my most requested sound outside of shred is the Spanish classical guitar that I've been known to perform at Quinceañeras. I also enjoy lending and bending my style(s) to work on collaborations with other artists around the world.
Michael A. Ruelas: Aside from distributing to the digital outlets I haven't chosen to change anything up yet. If I have only a track or two in my head I might just drop them on YouTube for fun and then they may or may not end up on the next album, depending on its concept. But I try to put as much meaning as possible in to whatever I do, even if it's just a fun short video. At around 23 minutes long "Paranormal Shredtivity" is really an EP, but I feel I've packed more in to it than anything I've done before.
Michael A. Ruelas: ”Screaming for Mona” possesses with its intense emotion and melody, while the title track “Paranormal Shredtivity” manifests as a wild and haunting ride. I think either track could fit right in as a movie score. You may need to become un-busy/distracted and find a seat and some popcorn for those two.
Michael A. Ruelas: Along this amazing journey I've had some great experiences working with some real legends, but I'd have to say my greatest musical achievement is that I've compiled enough knowledge and skill that I can help open up whole new worlds for my students, and I don't believe anything in my pro/solo career will ever compare to the pride and satisfaction of teaching.
Michael A. Ruelas: In 2020 I am doubling down on life! I will work harder to promote my work and I will inspire more students. I will continue to evolve by learning and dissecting every form of music theory I come across and then incorporate it with my own. I intend to make more music videos, attend more festivals and events like NAMM and do more live gigs. I am excited to begin working on my planned acoustic album and hopefully start a progressive band akin to Dream Theater.
Finally, I will always be thankful to be a part of such an amazing industry.