Musicscan: Who am I “talking to”?
Man The Machetes: Guten Tag! You're "talking" to Christopher (vocals) from the Norwegian hardcore band "Man the Machetes". MTM consist of five people in total; you have Morten and Erlend on guitars, Erik on bass and Per on battery.
Musicscan: What is it for you guys to be called a hardcore flavored rock band - is it somehow annoying or fine with you? Is this what MAN THE MACHETES is all about musically?
Man The Machetes: We have no problems whatsoever being labeled as a hardcore flavored rock band, as the description more or less gives a general pointer at where we're located musically. Actually, sometimes we describe our own music by using that term ouselves. :)??When we started out as a band, we didn't really have an in-depth discussion about what we wanted to be about musically. We were just five guys with a common taste in hard and energetic music who wanted to form a band, so we started playing and writing whatever felt natural to us. So I guess we ended up being av hardcore flavored rock band that way. :) All things considered: our band is about aggression, fast-paced groove, melody and catchiness.
Musicscan: And are there any principles you would never give up to with the band style-wise? What kind of?
Man The Machetes: Haha, if you put together all the principles from each individual in the Machetes, you'll be left with quite many, but here are a few which are more or less written in stone: ??-No clean and mellow vocals
-No lollygagging, lots of energy in the music instead
-Always arrive at rehearsals in a tank
These were the principles we followed when writing for our debut, but musical preferences do evolve, so we shouldn't look away from the possibility of MTM "breaking" some of the oaths to a slight degree in the future - but it hasn't happened....yet.
Musicscan: What are you heading for in general? MAN THE MACHETES seems to focus on intensity and raw brutality with a good dose of (dark) melodies...
Man The Machetes: Indeed! When we're writing music, we always focus on creating catchy and aggressive hardcore with a pinch of melodies.
Musicscan: Being around as a band with an own identity and vision does it bother you when you see or meet kids who ignore you or have a different understanding of what your music and your style means to you?
Man The Machetes: No, not really - we believe everyone is entitled to have his or her own opinion. What really bothers us is when people write off a band, or an entire genre for that matter, as garbage without really having explored it thoroughly enough. ??How many times haven't you heard a dude/dudette utter the phrase "I don't like metal, since it's only about growling, noise and Satan/other demonic entity", while moments later, you find him/her humming along to a Metallica song? Pretty damn confusing, and certainly not fair to the bands in the respective genre.
Musicscan: Do you feel that the band has already found its “own” sound, or is it still evolving?
Man The Machetes: Hard to say, really. I believe that MTM always will play music which is fast-paced, aggressive and melodic, but it is possible that the band will start exploring new paths within those boundaries in the future. All depends on what we feel is the next natural step and what we are comfortable with at the given time.
Musicscan: If you compare the visions you had of Idiokrati and compare it to your impressions listening to the album now – what´s the difference, is there any?
Man The Machetes: At the time when we started writing for "Idiokrati", we wanted the album to contain upbeat and aggressive songs loaded with positive melodies, and we feel that we have achieved that goal in a very good way! However, (I can only speak for myself here) I do also feel that there's a touch of darkness in the album as well, especially if you take the entire package into consideration: the artwork, how the soundscape turns darker throughout the album, the lyrics etc.
Musicscan: What stands out in your mind about the chemistry of the recording of your new album? How did this contribute to the overall sound and feel of the album?
Man The Machetes: Eric Ratz (producer) is a great guy to work with! The way he communicated with us throughout the process really made us comfortable and confident when recording the album, and that definitely made us give the little extra during the takes. Ratz did also provide honest and invaluble input in regards of details and sound in general, something which had an important role to play for the end results. Suffice to say: we recommend this guy!??
Musicscan: How important are compromises to your band? Should they play a major role at all? To me it seems that you're not willing to take compromises into consideration at all...
Man The Machetes: It is important to us that everyone in the band is comfortable with the music we play, thus there are some compromises to be made along the way. At the same time, everyone has a common understanding of where we want to be musically. Therefore the compromises end up being minor ones, like playing a certain riff 4 instead of 6 times, hitting the kick instead of the snare etc, ordering pizza instead of pasta etc. But no latte! We're very uncompromising that way.
Musicscan: Due to the language listeners outside of Norway won’t understand too much. What are the topics and thoughts you are dealing with? Is there something like a main theme or a main idea that runs through all the songs on the record, something that perhaps connects the individual songs you‘ve created for Idiokrati?
Man The Machetes: The album is about a space-ninja who embarks on an epic journey to retrieve a crystal katana from the planet Xanador...wait...that was our other project... =)??The lyrics address issues we regard as problems with contemporary society, culture and humanity in general, without being political in the typical leftwing-rightwing scale. Feelgood-misanthropy with a glimpse of hope?
Musicscan: There are lots of heavier, metal influenced hardcore-bands around with a good doe of rock n roll to their songs. What sets MAN THE MACHETES apart from your point of view?
Man The Machetes: MTM is uncompomising, yet accessible. Aggressive, yet catchy. Man the Machetes is also about melodic feelgood with a pinch of darkness to it - in other words: I believe many out there will find something to appreciate about our songs, regardless of which style they prefer.