1. How did you get your initial start in music?
I got my initial start in music at the age of 11 playing metal with some lads I met at a swimming gala- we had all lost the same race and were getting changed- we were chatting then put on various metal t- shirts (AC/DC, Sabbath) and realised we had more in common than we originally thought! We went on to form Jacob’s Mouse at the age of 16, probably doing over 1000 gigs in our 8 year career and releasing 3 albums and lots of singles, we still have a cult following to this day, so it seems! I formed Machismo’s when JM split up, did it for a year but was burnt out with the music industry and became a mental health support worker- something less selfish and more about helping others! It was time to ‘give back’ for a while!
2. What would be your ultimate aim in the industry?
Our ultimate aim is really just to be known on the underground music scene, for being a genuine band that isn’t searching for some kind of shit x factor type fame and fortune- we write music for people like ourselves- like an offering to the people!! (cheesy I know!!) I hope for that to come across, that said the response to the band has been tremendous so who knows where it might take us!!! Up into the stars and beyond!!! …seriously as a Taoist there is a contradiction by being in a band, as playing in bands is usually an egotistical pursuit, and part of following ‘the way’ (the tao) is sublimating the ego. We are under no illusions- you aint gonna find ultimate happiness playing in a successful band- when do you ‘arrive’?? Most people just want more and more, and however successful they get they are never satisfied.
3. How long have you been writing your own music?
I started writing when I was 10 on a four stringed classical guitar which I wished was a bass guitar, and I still use it 30 years later, making up my own chords and tunings. I wrote my first ‘proper’ song -‘Sign’ for Jacob’s mouse when I was 16. We started gigging from age 11 and I was playing in a metal covers band with much older guys (in their 30’s) in divey biker pubs around Suffolk at 14, been playing ever since. Jacob’s Mouse probably did over 1000 gigs between 1988 and 1994. Played in a hardcore thrash punk band for last 13 years, now doing Machismo’s which is a bit friendlier!
4. Who are your top three influences and why?
My top three influence have to be Black Sabbath for the riffs, heavyness and drumming, Nick Drake for beautiful songwriting and Jesus and Mary chain for raw noise extremism- these are my earliest strong influences and as you’d expect, if you spend a life ‘loving music’ you are going to end up with a multitude of ‘top 3’ influences…so I could name hundreds of bands / artists who have influenced me!!
5. Is there anything you would like people to know about your current release?
The current Machismo’s release is a collection of songs from 95 /96 which I recorded when Jacob’s Mouse split up, and I had free reign to have an outpouring of pent up musical frustrations released like a power puke onto tape (!), these are some of the best tunes on this album but there will be nice weirder stuff I recorded at the same time coming out at some point…currently writing lot’s of new material with Rachel and Karly mixed in with funny and challenging poetry…also to be released later this year….
6. Where are you based and what’s your local scene like? Any favourite venues?
We are based in Bury St Edmunds, a town in Suffolk. During the Jacob’s mouse era people from London used to talk about Bury like it was some gumby backwater (which probably has some truth in it haha) but it’s actually only an hour up the road from London, and yes, we do have internet access up here and other forms of media content does reach us too!! It’s a thriving close knit scene which many a visiting band is quite jealous of.
7. Who else can you recommend from your local scene for people to have a listen to?Lots of good bands!! Horse Party, Rats as big as dogs, Volunteers, The Domestics, Keys, Kate Jackson , Tryal of witches, Voter kernal, The Vitamins, Thy Last Drop, The Birch, Men of Munga, William English, Pale fires, The Wilsons, Scare The Normals, the list goes on…..
8. Give our readers a round up of where they can find you online and hear more of your music.
https://www.facebook.com/TheMachismos, https://twitter.com/themachismos https://soundcloud.com/the-machismos For fans of the weirder end of noisy indie music- ‘putting the punk back into indie’ so they say…check it out!!!! Thanks ‘Know Me Better blog’ XX