For their 10th anniversary, Blood Manor opened up this past Thursday with “Touch Me Thursdays.” To make the haunted house feel even more interactive and horrifying, people were allowed to choose if they wanted to be touched or not by the actors.
Every dark haunted room was eerie but had a different spooky theme to it. There were human slaughter rooms, 3D-painted mazes, mental detention rooms, and other spine-chilling rooms and encounters. The actors within the house scared and preyed on “victims,” leaving them with goose bumps and tried making everyone who walked by piss their pants. If you piss your pants, you do get a free shirt! Blood Manor is fun filled with scares and surprises and is a must visit for October.
Also, to kick off their opening night, Blood Manor invited Melanie Martinez an NBC “The Voice,” alum from Season 3, to make an appearance and perform. She performed a few songs from her breakthrough debut EP “The Dollhouse.” Her supernatural themed songs “Carousel,” “Alphabet Boy,” “Dead To Me,” “Cry Baby,” and “Dollhouse” presented the perfect spooky vibe for Blood Manor’s victims. She announced this appearance for the attraction since she’s been touring around the country. Her song “Dollhouse” raced to the top 10 on iTunes right after it was released. Her “Dollhouse” music video recently just hit 8.6 million views on YouTube and is becoming an online phenomenon.
Photo Credit Jenny Sung
We had the opportunity to exclusively chat with Melanie the next day. Read highlights from our interview below:
Q: Congratulations on “Carousel” being featured in the “American Horror Story” trailer! That’s incredible! How did that come about?
A: I wrote the song about a year ago … I think mid-October of last year and I just wrote it on just a personal story and I just a couple months later I found out that the new theme… was leaked for … the new season for “American Horror Story” and I just sent an email to my manager and was like, “We should do something about this.” She didn’t hear back from anyone for like a year, until like two days before they aired it. And I was freaking out because it’s my favorite show and I’ve watched every season. I’m just a big fan of the show so it was really exciting.
Q: Was that a very surreal moment for you as an artist?
A: Oh absolutely. It was definitely surreal.
Q: The “Carousel” video just dropped. Can you tell me about working on the video and the concept with that?
A: Yeah, I think that we just wanted to follow like a very clear narrative to the song so I wanted the visuals to stick to every line of the song basically and just tell that story and, you know, show people what I was seeing in my head when I was writing it. So yeah, the video is really fun. I was just really happy to work with people that I really enjoy being around. It was definitely a really good time.
Kinetics & One Love the song’s co-writers/producers told us exclusively, “We were blown away by Melanie within minutes of meeting her – she walked into our studio, picked up an acoustic guitar and hypnotized us for five minutes in an almost possessed state. One Love and I were really drawn to her ability to create such a detailed, picturesque aesthetic of a dark nightmare through her words and stories. The three of us clicked instantly, and wrote “Dollhouse,” her first single, in that first session and “Carousel” maybe two sessions later. I’m excited for her album – and the entire nightmare/carnival/dollhouse/Tim Burton-esque dark world she’s been creating – to drop next year.”
Q: Would you say you had a hand in the direction of the video?
A: Yeah it was my concept and I had a director, his name is Adam Donald. He was really amazing. We kind of just, you know worked on it. He was very excited to, like, have people to see my vision and stuff.
Q: Your music is so unique that it definitely sets you apart from all the other new and upcoming artists. Where do you find your inspiration?
A: I think just from everything is just revolving around my childhood … I think. I just pull out things that I remember. Things that I enjoy doing or, you know, I feel like that stuff is super inspiring for me. Just like with music and writing, all the concepts are very – are driven by childhood themes, but just in a more mature way, I think. And everything has kind of been like that, so yeah.
Q: So in songwriting, do you have a specific process or series of events that you go through every time that you write?
A: Well for the album … I kind of have been starting with titles and like, just concepts really. Like what the story is going to be and, you know, how I can tell that story in a way that can kind of show this world that I’m trying to create and put out there. So they’re all very cohesive and just kind of fit together really well. So I think my process is very similar each time, but it really depends who I’m working with. But, yeah, melody and lyrics both kind of come at the same time as the concept and that’s super important to me.
Q: You also have a unique style in the way that you dress and in your persona. Can you describe that style and what inspired that?
A: Well I’m really inspired by kind of like the ‘50’s and like basically what little girls wore in the ‘50’s. Just like the whole Peter Pan collar with poofy sleeves, like that. I love that. And the flare out dresses and all that like Japanese Lolita stuff, I love wearing stuff like that. And I love wearing pastel colors.
Q: Do you think there is a relationship between your physical style and your music?
A: Absolutely. I think because it’s very like little kid-ish it fits with the music because its all childhood themes. So like everything fits kind of hand in hand.
Q: As an artist have you been influenced by any other musicians? And if so, who are they?
A: Well I listen to a lot of music. But I definitely haven’t looked at an artist and like thought I want to have a song like this. I haven’t done that ever like with like writing for the album I’m working on right now. I think I’ve really just been following what I want to do and kind of just going from what I feel like I want to see. So I haven’t really. There are obviously so many artists that are very inspiring, but I can’t say that they like – that I have someone in mind that is like a creative direction of where I want to go as an artist. I think I’m just doing my own thing.
Q: So you were on “The Voice” on Team Adam Levine, what was it like having him as a mentor?
A: He was really sweet and very supportive.
Q: Did he give you any advice that you feel like is important to the direction you’re going in now?
A: I mean that show was was a while ago. Right now, I’m kind of doing something a little bit different and just kind of growing up and realizing what I want to do and who I want to be as an artist. And I don’t think really that that had anything to do with the direction that I’m going in now. I think that exposure wise, yeah totally, it definitely helped out a lot.
Q: Going back to you and the direction that you’re going in now, you’re going to be releasing your debut album “Cry Baby,” how is that coming along?
A: It’s coming along well. I’m almost done. I have like the ending part of it really. It’s definitely been a lot of fun and it’s been really crazy. I’m just super excited for people to hear more music that I’ve been working on and play these songs live and stuff. It’s going to be really fun.
Q: Can you speak about working with the writers and producers Kinetics and One Love and what that experience was like?
A: They’re like my favorite human beings in the whole entire world. They’re ridiculously amazing and they just understand where I’m coming from always. And they’re just really talented. Just amazing. I don’t know I’m very, very thankful. I’m happy that I get to work with people that I enjoy being around. It’s really cool when people understand and want to help your vision and are like rooting for you. I just, I love them a lot.
Q: As you’re returning to Part 2 of the Dollhouse tour what can your fans expect?
A: A lot of fun. And yeah, a lot of pink. Yeah, a lot of pink and a lot of fun.
Q: Do you have any fun Halloween plans with it right around the corner?
A: So I went to this haunted house for like a performance thing last night and I was a dead Minnie Mouse, I had a bullet wound in my head. But I think I want to be like Pebbles Flintstone but like a scary Pebbles Flintstone for like actual Halloween. So I’m going to figure that out. But so far that’s really my only plan. I think I really want to go pumpkin picking and like, I like scary makeup and just scare little kids, so that will be really fun.
MELANIE MARTINEZ “DOLLHO– USE TOUR – PART TWO” US TOUR 2014
09 Dallas, TX – HOB- Cambridge Room
11 Denver, CO – Larimer Lounge
12 Salt Lake City, UT – Kilby Court
14 Seattle, WA – El Corazon Lounge
15 Portland, OR – White Eagle
17 San Francisco, CA – The Chapel
19 San Diego, CA – HoB- Voodoo Room
20 Los Angeles, CA – The Mint
22 Santa Ana, CA – Constellation Room
24 Phoenix, AZ – Pub Rock
Melanie Martinez interview by Elise Cruz.