We caught up with MONTRELL following the brilliant release of ‘Simpler In The Dark’, enjoy now!
What is your earliest music memory?
Sam: Me. A boy of four. Curly gold locks and an ever-present smile that would indicate a special kind of wonder experienced only in youth. Yet to experience my first kiss or my first heartbreak, but about to encounter my first powerful transformation through music.
Who or what got you into music?
Sam: Sunday hymns and school assemblies. When you’ve perfected performing for JC, you are ready to play any crowd.
Who influenced your latest release, ‘Simpler In The Dark’?
Jonny: In terms of sound, the band influenced it, really. In terms of muse, no comment…
‘Simpler In The Dark’ is taken from your forthcoming EP. Can you tell us any more about the release?
Jonny: Yeah, I reckon the first track, ‘Magnets’, addresses obsession and addiction; Simpler In The Dark is, rather baldly, temptation. The third, Medicine, which releases in March, is sort of the cure to all the above, and how to get inside a friend’s mind to relieve anything malignant in the relationship and let you just see each other in the best light.
You have been releasing track throughout the lockdowns; how has that been?
Jonny: Yeah, that was a new feeling as we’re so used to being in a studio. It just tests the musicianship in a different way; you’re playing to an existing recorded sound, downloaded from your inbox, and not going for beers afterwards. Of course, it’s been slightly demoralising, but it’s great to know that you can do it, I guess.
Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Jonny: I just can’t really say anyone else but Bowie at this point in my life.
Living; Win Butler and Kevin Parker together on a little EP would be great.
What’s your dream venue to play?
Mikey: This is more of an event than a venue, but I would love to play Ypsigrock Festival one day. It’s set in this beautiful Sicilian castle and always has amazing lineups of alternative bands. I reckon playing it would be a real adventure. Also, bands are only allowed to perform there ‘once per lifetime’, so the pressure would be on to make it memorable.
Other than music, what are you passionate about?
Mikey: Going to the cinema has always been a close second to gig-going. I think you can get lost in the world of a film like you can be immersed in a great album. But then there’s films that have great soundtracks, like O Brother, Where Art Thou? or Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – so you’ve got the best of both worlds.
What changes would you like to see in the music business?
Mikey: I’m really hoping that once the pandemic eases, people will cherish local venues and local music scenes again. I think with the internet and huge artists touring big venues around the world, it’s easy to forget that there are musicians in your neighbourhood probably releasing really great stuff. So I’ve been making a conscious effort to listen to more bands from Leicester, my hometown. Spudge are a personal favourite.
How do you feel about how the internet plays a role in the music business today?
Jonny: I think the internet makes it harder to find really great music, as the chaff are all in with the wheat now. It exaggerates the contrasting magic of a live show. The internet is proof that technology isn’t the answer to humanity, and that is reflected in every industry.
If you could choose one thing for fans to take away from your music, what would it be?
Jonny: I mean, hopefully, they get a glimpse of one of Sam’s smiles…
Tough one… I suppose I’d quietly hope the lyrics might cause them to consider the true importance of their own emotions, especially within their own relationships and friendships.
FV Music Blog February 2021
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