Monday, February 6, 2023

An Interview with Muzzins (And their new single, "Send It Back")

It's only been eighteen months since Muzzins released their first single, but the Boston band has been riding a whirlwind of buzz since then. This is most likely due to their eclectic and unique sound and captivating live shows. They just released their third single last week, so when the opportunity to interview R-Muzz came up, I couldn't resist. We spoke over Zoom, and a fifteen minute conversation became a thirty minute conversation which flowed in every possible direction. I was only able to ask two questions in that time, but certainly no complaints because it was a wild, meandering ride. Here are some highlights from our talk.

On recording:

"I almost never record anything anymore. Except for the music we play sometimes, but even that I've become less and less concerned about recording... the more interested I get in the process of being present, completely present with the music as we make it. It's largely improvised."

On Muzzins' connection with fans:

"Our music, I feel, is music of instant recognition. The people who hear us see themselves in us and hear themselves in us almost instantly. We have instant superfans... It's very niche, it's not for everyone. 

On influences:

"There are certain filters and guidelines and concepts... a certain set of values... that I think drives the music. More than anything, I mean the influences, yes, everything, everything has influenced us, even the things we don't like have influenced us. Naming influences is only so interesting... The synthesis, for me, is more interesting to talk about. How do we synthesize these influences?"

On Muzzins' sound:

"It's the expression of our relationship to each other... None of this was planned. The entire concept is an improvised concept... The sound comes through us, it's like we each had electrical charges that each eventually found each other and the recognition was instant, as it is with people who listen to us... It's like if you're running a certain operating system... we're living in AI times, right? We have natural intelligence and our natural intelligences seek out certain kinds of similarities with other people."

On their new single, "Send It Back":

"That song came out of me in probably ten minutes. The lyrics for that song, they were instantaneous. Much of our stuff is like that... The music came together really quickly, as it does with us. The production took a while just because we were travelling and it's our first collaborative project as a band. We had two other singles before this that were more like pandemic projects in isolation so someone wrote a beat and someone wrote the lyrics, so we weren't in a room together making it. This really feels like our first collaborative effort coming out of our weekly rehearsals... It started off almost as, not a joke, but like a challenge, like 'I wonder what it would be like if... we wrote a stadium rocker.' That was the holding title of the song. 'What would it be like for Muzzins to make, like, a big, rock anthem'... It's fun to sing, too. I can get really loud and ragey."

On how our conversation kept going off script:

"Going off script is part of the process for us... I live and breathe my process, it's in everything I do, my entire life is improvised. Largely improvised. So it's inevitable because everything I do is an expression of who I am. That's been a central part of my own personal development... You're getting me exactly as I know myself."

On Muzzins' appeal to their audience:

"We're not for everyone. Our stories are not going to be the standard 'here's a band with some music'... Our composition is too fucking weird... We're an underground band. We're like a psychedelic, activist, underground band... It's just the right people, superfans only. I think of us as a premium band. And I mean that word very broadly, we respect our energy and we respect the creativity that comes through us. We want to involve other people in the experience of connecting back to their own ability to just be present, be in the moment, get the feeling of safety and adventure at the same time."

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