Interview: Murder FM

According to Murder FM, they sound like “your heart in a f*kin blender”. I say they seem like a beautiful mix of all things enjoyful, dark, and hopeful. You be the judge.

Norman Matthew of Murder FM recently took the time out of his busy schedule which has included planning a wedding, recording new music, and working with music students from the school of rock and zounds, to answer a few questions for EspyRock.

Your video for ‘As Beautiful As You Are’ was voted Top 10 in Europe alongside Muse, 30 Seconds to Mars and Nickelback. What do you think the appeal is in Europe for your music?

Not sure what our appeal is just yet. It’s quite awesome that a country Murder FM has yet to visit is so supportive of our band and our music out the gate. It’s a breath of fresh air to be played on TV airwaves before our market value, marketing dollars and overall stock as a band was proven. Glasstone Records walked the video over to SCUZZ and their program director spun the video because he liked it and for no other reason. It grew wings and flew and I’m extremely thankful.

So this Squizz TV actually plays videos?  I think MTV needs to get back to that.  Hell, even MTV 2.

It’s Scuzz that plays Videos, sooo dope! Squizz is on Satellite Radio ;) I Agree MTV = music television, hasn’t been that in years!

I personally think it’s awesome that Skindred’s ‘Stand for Something’ is right up there too! Benji is a cool cat!  I love his jacket!

Skindred is awesome.  I dig their first single that came out a while back.  If I’m not mistaken, they are from Wales in the UK which makes it an honor to be listed side by side with them on a chart, it’s their home court.

Now, I’m all about the live show.  Norman, you seem multi-talented….vocals, guitar, programming, piano.  Do you play piano at shows?

Well thank you, that’s a very nice thing to say.  Sometimes I don’t know if it’s so much multi-talented, but more like driven to understand the mechanics and dynamics of a song and the musical communication within the songwriting.  I would love to play piano and keys when we are afforded the opportunity in a live show and get more than 30 minutes opening up for an killer headliner.  We have many plans in our head and hope they come to life one day, there’s just only so much room on stage sometimes, but tons of room in my head, haha.

Describe Murder FM’s live show using 5 words.

Bloody, sweaty, body paint, baby powder and aggressive.

Ok, I am somewhat concerned.  What is up with the backdrop?  (By the way those are amazing pictures in the Dallas, TX album on the myspace page )

The backdrops are the blood of our enemies we collect as we tour, haha! its simply part of the theme, bloody backdrops to kinda set the mood, with the full length record, there will be a whole other stage and clothing theme. I miss bands that put on a show, even in their smallest form, so we strive to theme things out and that is the plan for each record.

Hmmm….so I can somewhat understand the baby powder and the water winding up on stage during shows.  But what is the black latex paint used for?

In unison things make a bigger impression theatrically. Imagine a sports team all walking out with each member wearing different jerseys, it wouldn’t be quite as intense.  Each one of us plays an important role in the band and are cogs in a machine, its not about the individual, but more about the beast we are as one, so our “uniform” just kinda ties us all together.

How exactly does one get to witness the backstage industrial dance party before your shows?

Just walk through an alley or parking lot and look for the convoy of vans, buses, rv’s and uhauls.  We usually get shafted on dressing rooms unless the janitor cleans out the broom closet when we play bigger places.  Seriously, the term “backstage” is a little too rockstar status for me at the moment.  I kinda like to just keep it real, listen to jams and stay as far from the club as possible until its time to play.

Speaking of which, I see you are involved with Team Cybergeist.  How did this come about and share whatever you wish about this.

Angel from DOPE is the catalyst of the Team Cybergeist project, members of KITTIE, THE DREAMING, STONE SOUR and so many more are involved.  Angel hit me up while I was recording the NEVER 3NOUGH record with Keith and Trevor of 18VISIONS asking if I would be interested in doing vocals.  Fast forward two and a half years, I’ve sung on two songs and just remixed ‘Justified’.  I’m sure all of which will surface as Angel prepares to release ‘How to Destroy Something Beautiful’ in the US.  I know it’s out in Japan and the title track ‘How To Destroy Something Beautiful’ is the track I sing on.

To what extent was Beau Hill, Interscope Records founder, producer of Warrant, Ratt, etc, involved with the record?

Forget the record; Beau is involved in my life.  He is my mentor in more ways than you can imagine, music aside he’s always right behind everything I do in one aspect or another. Beau is always looking out for me and I’m thankful.

I had never heard of him by the way and got lost on his site.  There are a lot of up and coming bands that I recognize he has worked with, such as Lynam.  He seems like he truly is passionate about finding new talent to work with.

I get lost in his house! It’s hard to find your way when gold and platinum records blind you left and right.  He’s a true legend in this business.  He’s done more than what is on his site and he’s always looking to be cuttinge edge, pushing envelopes and never content with just things being ok.  He strives for perfection, is up on the latest technology, newest bands and the man has ears that just don’t fail. Before there was Rick Rubin and Bob Rock, there was Beau Hill, lets not forget that.

And you are signed to an independent label called Glasstone Records.  Do you like it this way because you have more control over what you can and can not do as an artist?

Glasstone has been a key component in the building of Murder FM.  The music industry model and business as we know it has changed.  The playing field is level, distribution channels have changed, marketing strategies, demographics buying habits and the political infrastructure are flailing, soon, a Glasstone or any indie will be just a big a beast as a Universal or Virgin.  It’s interesting to see how things have flip flopped. I love having control over what we do, but if you as an artist realize your music is a product and so are you ,the sooner you figure that out, the less you are “told” what to do in a sense. It’s a big boys game and you need to have your strategy before you get in the ring. I wish any artist trying to “make it” even MORE luck than ever before.  Calculate your moves.

When did you guys tour with Korn?  And what is your most memorable memory from that tour?

From THE USED tour to DOPE to KORN, April 27th,2010 at County Coliseum in my hometown of El Paso,Tx with KORN is one of my fondest memories onstage.

Post by MsBrandyRock


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