Interview

Brains

Brains

Monday 9th August, 2010 8:36PM

Interview with Matthew McAuley from Dunedin band brains.

Been around since?

September 2008. Just over a year. Whoa.

Current line up?

Matthew McAuley – guitar/vocals
Hugh McDonald – bass
Will Jensen – drums

Where are you based?

Dunedin at the moment, soon to relocate to Wellington though.

What got you into music?

Our collective upbringings? I got the internet when I was 10, and used it to look up wrestling websites and punk forums. I guess it kinda started from there. Napster was my life. It sure wasn’t living in a tiny sawmilling town and going to parties where everyone drank Woodstocks and listened to Bon Jovi that instilled this creative urge. Or maybe it was. I dunno. It’s something to write about, at least.

How did you get together?

We were all friends – Hugh and Will have lived together for the past 3 years - and spent way too much time talking about how awesome we’d be if we started a band. So we did, and we were kind of shit for a while, but now we’re way better and sometimes we even get compliments from people who aren’t our friends.

How would you describe your sound?

Somewhere between cacophonous and transcendent. No, I don’t know. Extremely driven by the rhythm section. Explorations through feedback. Learning how to write choruses. We like Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine.

What are you listening to at the moment?

Animal Collective, Liars, Pulp, David Dallas, Shayne Carter + Peter Jefferies, Les Savy Fav, Street Chant, Jay-Z, Tyvek, Pavement, Major Lazer, Chug, Seth Frightening, the “…But I Can Write Songs Okay” compilation.

What is your writing/recording process?

It’s generally pretty collaborative. We’re not a one writer band or anything. Either me or Hugh will come up with a riff or progression or something, and then tell Will vaguely how we want him to drum. It’s pretty intuitive I guess, stuff just tends to come together. Recording wise, it varies. We made our first EP in a few hours with our friend/Will’s old bandmate DJ, but lately we’ve been self recording to 4-track. Just wherever we can, bedrooms mainly. In December we’re going to record with real gear and stuff though, with our friend Tom Bell. He rules.

Your Dream Collaboration?

Oh hard. Um, Robbie Yeats (Dead C) on drums, Nick Harte (Shocking Pinks) on drums, Leroy Glover (ESG) on bass, Kathy Bull/Francisca Griffin (Look Blue Go Purple) on bass, Ira Kaplan (Yo La Tengo) on guitar/vocals, Martin Swope (Mission of Burma) making weird noises and shit. Supergroup as. I’d be stage manager.

Do you have any releases our or on the way?

As mentioned above, we have an EP currently in some sort of circulation. That is to say, if people want us they can email us and we’ll make them one (brainsband@gmail.com). And in December, also as mentioned, we’re gonna record another mini-album/maxi-ep. Probably like 8 tracks long. That should be coming out on Lttl Paisly sometime next year. Lttl Paisly is amazing. I think maybe a Nevernudes split lathe-cut 7” somewhere along the line too.

What do you enjoy most about music?

Riders/interacting with “the crowd”

What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learnt musically in the last year?

I can actually play guitar now, which is pretty great.

What’s the best concert you have ever been to?

Broken Social Scene early 2k8/The Show Is The Rainbow at Camp a Low Hum 2k9/Die! Die! Die! Dunedin homecoming show 2k7

Best or most memorable gig you have played?

All ages with Thought Creature and Shocking Pinks in Christchurch earlier this year was pretty fantastic. Really really good. Thought I was dying at the time though. Bad buzz.

If you could share the stage with anyone (band or person) who would it be?

Right at this moment, The 3Ds.

Most overrated band at the moment?

Six60. Holy shit. Wholly shit. Man, so much h8.

Most underrated band at the moment?

This is pretty hard. Um. Body 125. Or Seth Frightening.

The future holds…?

A very very limited run of t-shirts/new locations/more tours/boring jobs/side projects/egos. WE ARE PLAYING IN CHRISTCHURCH ON THE 19TH OF NOVEMBER, AND WELLINGTON ON THE 21ST OF NOVEMBER. PLEASE COME AND HANG OUT.

The state of music in NZ is….

Pretty good I guess. It sometimes feels a little stagnant, but that kind of breeds creativity through boredom anyway. Even though there’s not heaps that blows my mind happening at the moment, it could totally be way, way worse.




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