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Mason Clinic

Mason Clinic

Interviewed by
Danielle Street
Wednesday 7th March, 2012 10:40AM

After three years of gigging around Auckland Mason Clinic have just released their debut EP through the new Hell is Now Love label. Prisoners is said to be “six tracks of bittersweet melodies, delicate keyboards and fuzzed out guitars”. We caught up with frontman Mason Campbell on the eve of the group’s release tour to find out all about it.

How did it happen that you expanded from a one-man band to a five piece?

I recorded demos for Problemoz, maybe back in 2008, and had been playing solo prior to that. However, everyone seemed to like what I had done and said a band would sound good with the music I was writing and recording at the time.

What effect has growing into a band had on your sound over time?

I think it has changed to suit the bands tastes! But also mine because I can be quite picky.

Prisoners is a rather ominous name, are there any common theme that tie the EP together?

Ha. I write pretty diverse music and the band has pretty diverse tastes. So I guess Prisoners is just that kinda feeling. We want out. Maybe? I’m not sure, I’ve never been asked that question. Lol.

Three years of playing live, you must of had a lot of material you wanted to record, how did you pare it down?

We didn’t really, ha. We got a fuck load of songs but we kinda had to work with what we had initially. Every time we recorded we were making demos for new drummers, so we worked with those recordings.

Tell me about the writing and recording of Prisoners. What was the biggest thing you learnt?

It was recorded in my room, with Mikey at Kitchen Studios, and at Thinkt with Damo and Josh. Recording is hard work, it’s kinda like you know the songs but for some reason energy lacks somewhere maybe because of nerves or whatever. I think you have to be in a good environment that’s comfortable and makes you feel relaxed. Preferably smoking and drinking inside allowed.

What is one essential survival tool for the recording studio?

Beers, ciggies , energy , coffee... any of those... maybe love

How did you hook up with the Hell is Now Love label?

I knew of Martin from God Bows to Math... I appreciated what Muzai had been doing, and when Martin mentioned starting up Hell is Now Love and getting us on board because he dug our tunes I felt blessed.

It seems like you are a band that doesn't like to be pinned down to genres, but who are some of the musicians you relate to, and why?

That’s always a tough question, that’s why we don’t like to be pinned down. Personally, I like longevity in a band because it shows growth and companionship, music that comes from the heart rather than just a falseness. hmm... is it rude to say there’s too many like most people do…

What are the main inspirations in your song writing?

For most of the songs I can't initially pinpoint where the inspiration is coming from. I guess most of the songs are about love, lust, anger, and pain. Happiness is there sometimes... most people can relate to those things. It seems the songs find their own meaning. Most of the time.

What plans do you have following the release of the EP?

Just keep on playing and writing music that people can enjoy and relate to.

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