Monday, November 12, 2012

Interview with Jason Hodges and Gary Stevens of MUTWAWA

Hello, and thanks for taking the time to do an interview.  Feel free to introduce yourself.
Thank you! I’m Jason.
Yeah, thank you! I'm Gary
What are some bands you two have been in besides MUTWAWA?
I’m currently also in Bermuda Triangles and Suppression, I used to be in Amoeba Men, The Yes Sirs, Silver Ninjas, and Kojak.
I am currently involved with Head Molt, Astrology Diet, Afrocimex and Glassslipper. Past projects include A.S.D, No-fi, Netenyahoo, Jermflux, and a few others I don't recall! mostly noise type stuff with a pretty limited output. 
When you two came together to form MUTWAWA, what was the sound that you were going for?  Do you think that you have achieved that sound yet?
For me it was a chance to collab with a friend who’s band I loved and I was looking for a project to experiment with my Electribe sampler. I think what we’re going for morphs/ changes and may be purposely unattainable to keep us on our toes...
I had no idea what we would sound like honestly, I was just really stoked to work with Jason. Suppression and CNP Records are legends in my mind. So whatever became of it I was sure to be excited. After a couple of sessions, namely Radio Machete Mob it seemed to me we were a really noisy dance music project, something I've always wanted to do. I wouldn't say that this is our formula though, we both have many influences to bring to the table and experiment with other elements. 

Which one of you is the one who is the fan of Cities of the Red Night by William Burroughs?  Have you read the rest of that trilogy?  If your songs had lyrics, would they be in the same manner as Burroughs surreal writings?
I have read and like that book but haven’t read the trilogy. I’ve been meaning to but I always have a daunting stack of books that I don’t have time to read. Lyrics would probably be suggestive, rhythmic, and subliminal...
Yeah that was all Jason's idea. I haven't read the book. Not sure what we would be lyrically, but I would say our subject matter deals with things like mythology, the paranormal, occult, cults, pseudo-science, science fiction, religion, spirituality, distopian and post-apocalyptic themes. 

You recently played the Gwar-B-Q, how was it?  Any good stories?
It was great and weird. We’ve never played in sunlight before. Strawberry liqueur, weed cookies, and playing with a bunch of our friends all in one place made for a good time.
We went on at 11am! That was strange for me. We drew a decent crowd under the pagoda, people who did not know our music kinda seemed to enjoy it. Many great people and friends were there that day, I would love to do it again! 

You also played with Dope Body a while back, how was that?
That was our worst show, they were pretty good. 
Ha! Yeah that was a terrible Mutwawa set! Otherwise a good show. They fall slightly outside of my area of musical interest but they did some really cool songs, i liked the noisier parts.

What was your favorite band to play with?
Hmmmm. I loved playing with B L A C K I E, Mincemeat Or Tenspeed, Drums Like Machine Guns, and tons more....we’re lucky to have friends doing killer bands/ projects....
Not so much one particular band, we have played shows with many great acts and good friends. Sharing the overall experience of our collective scenes and personal visions is where it is at for me.  

You have a pretty large set of equipment to set up for your shows.  Do you feel like describing any of your setup for us?  What are each of your favorite pieces of equipment at the moment?
I mainly use my Electribe ESX-1 so I guess that’s my favorite but I also use a couple of Korg Monotrons, a Line 6 delay, and an old Dr. Groove drum machine midi’d in the mix all running through Gary’s stuff.
I cover the effects processing and mixing board. I mostly use guitar pedals, I like the grittier sound of multiple units feeding back into each other. I tend to naturally improvise so I have to make meticulous notes of knob settings or it all just goes haywire.

Want to tell us about the outfit choice for MUTWAWA?  Did you make the masks yourself? 
The costumes sort of found us.
We originally wanted ceremonial robes but in a pinch hit the thrift store and found a few dresses. They look pretty good so we just stuck with them. I painted the masks over top cheap plastic Halloween masks found laying around the house. Intensifying our costumes and performance in general is something I'd like to pursue further.

What was your favorite album releases of this year?  Feel free to state your top 10/25/ 50 albums.
I liked the Death Grips, Black Dice, Sediment Club, Liars, Blake Fleming, Eric Copeland releases this year. My top lists would totally vary from day to day but I’m pretty sure that Chrome, The Fall, Suicide, Crash Worship, Lake Of Dracula, and Muslimgauze would always make the cut...
I honestly don't keep up with newer stuff. I like to scour music blogs for obscure music from the past. My top played artists/albums of the last year (according to are Louise Huebner "Seduction Through Witchcraft", Ruth White "Seven Trumps of The Tarot", Stereolab "Emperor Tomato Ketchup", Zeigenbock Kopf "Nocturnal Submissions",  Luigi Russolo "Musica Futurista" , Hanatarash "Hanatarshi", 2 Many DJs "As Heard On radio Soulwax", The Screamers "Demos 1977-78", Missing Foundation "Ignore The White Culture",  Tom Cameron "Music To Do Dishes By"
Here is the spot where you get to do a shout out to some local band who deserves more people to know about them.  Do that.
Wow there’s a ton that I, Flesh Control, Pissheads, Olde Shame...yeah I can’t pick one.
local noise acts Contortionist Jazz Exotica, Heavy Breathing, Scant, Champagne Of Rats...punk bands like Pissheads, Lost Tribe, Soma, the scene here is pretty cool right now.

The title of the most recent release was “Lamashtu Pazuzu”.  Did you choose that because of a quote from a book or because of your knowledge of Mesopotamian mythology?  Why did you choose this as the title?
I liked the fact that Pazuzu was the demon possessing Regan in The Exorcist book/ film and a Babylonian myth that is summoned to protect against Lamashtu’s influence. We thought the two names together had a nice ring to it.
I think it was a bit of both. 

What is in the future for MUTWAWA?  Any new albums in the works, and if so are you going to stick to just cassette releases?
We’re currently writing for our first LP release....
We want to do an LP, slowly working on new songs, they are developing rather well. would also like to incorporate a dark alien, ritualistic soundtrack on side two.

Thank you again for your time.  Any last words for our readers?
Watch the skies....
Watch the skies....

1 comment:

  1. March of the Mutwawa Police was one of last years killers. Kicking.