What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.
Owen Gildersleeve: Chris and I have both lived in London for over 10 years now. It’s a brilliant city to live, full of creativity and possibility, but it can also be quite an intense and unforgiving place at times, especially when you’re not in a great place. At the time that Modern Technology first came about Chris and I both really needed to vent, emotionally and physically. We’d been jamming on and off before then for many years without things quite clicking, but coming together again at that time just the two of us things immediately took a far heavier and darker turn. We realised then that we had something interesting going, playing not just with the riffs but with the emptiness too.
Provide us with some info about your latest release…
We recorded the EP with the brilliant Wayne Adams at Bear Bites Horse Studio who really understood our sound and what we were trying to achieve. He’s got a great ear and is super quick when he works, aiming to capture the energy of our sound. He also made us sound massive, so we’ve since had to rework our sound a bit so that we can capture that in our live performances – Always great to have that extra push!
The EP can be purchased now from our Bandcamp as a limited edition vinyl and cassette, with all profits going to charities Mind & Shelter: https://modern-technology.bandcamp.com/releases
Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?
Chris: Absolutely — we both have a wide musical background, where we lean on aspects of different genres. I think as designers we also rely too often on precision, order and structure, this feels quite prominent in our compositions — and something we take great pleasure in taking a sledgehammer to.
In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?
Owen: Part of it is the bringing together of so many different influences and styles as we mentioned, but also Chris’ interesting take on vocals. I haven’t really heard much like it applied to the type of music we play – That post-punk, almost theatrical tone and range. The lyrics themselves are also so poignant and important at this time – I really feel proud to be able to say something through what we do.
Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…
Chris: In reality I would take really mundane things, like a book on survival. Probably an art book to look at paintings I will miss. Film – Castaway so I feel like someone else is going through the same thing as me. However I want the last minutes of the film erased so I never get to see him rescued, or have to watch that crying scene again. Music – I want silence till the credits roll and I disappear into nothing.
Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?
Owen: Both are really enjoyable in their own way. Being in the studio can be a real time of enjoyable exploration and there’s nothing quite like when you first come up with a new song that you’re excitedly jamming it out. But playing live is also a brilliant feeling, especially if you’ve been locked away writing for months and then are unleashing your music on an audience for the first time.
Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?
Owen: Not so funny but probably unique… As a drummer I’m used to being in the background during the writing process, waiting for riffs to be thrown at me. But one of the great things about this band is that we’re super collaborative with everything, with Chris throwing in ideas for the rhythm and me sending over ideas for riffs. So I’ve gotten into this habit of humming riffs into my phone whenever one comes into my head and sending it directly to Chris who very kindly doesn’t mock me. We’ve named them ‘Mouth Toots’ and they’ve actually become the basis for quite a few tracks on our last record… Although the Toots themselves will never see the light of day!
Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?
Owen: From our debut EP I would probably pick out Queue Jumper. It’s really two tracks in one, with the first half hitting in a very technical, industrial manner – All quite angular and discomforting. Then after the riff drops out it builds into this pummeling doomy ending that gets me buzzing every time we play it. I also absolutely love Chris’ vocals on this one, exploring themes of screen addiction, chanting “What’s worse you were made for this, swollen eyes staring at the abyss!”
Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?
Tickets are ‘£5 suggested donation’ and available now from Eventbrite & Dice. You can find out more about the show on the Facebook event page. It should be a really fun night so if you’re in London in June make sure to be there!
Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…
Owen: We never started the band to make any money or for any sort of success – In fact it’s been quite a pleasant surprise that people are enjoying what we do. So when we started looking at selling our record it didn’t sit well with us to keep the profits and we thought it would be much more appropriate to try to give something back to those affected by all of this mess that our songs explore.
That’s when we decided that any profits we make off the physical and digital release will go to charities Mind and Shelter. Shelter is doing some amazing work with the homeless and people on low incomes, which unfortunately has become far too common after years of austerity and benefit cuts. Mind is also doing some incredible work for mental health – An area which has in the past been overlooked, but is becoming an ever growing issue with society’s increasing demands, stresses and strains. Their work also links back to Shelter’s, as a lot of people going through housing issues unfortunately also suffer from mental health problems along the way, so the two charities feel like brilliant close allies.
So far we’ve raised nearly £600 through our record sales and we hope to make a lot more through the show – So if you’re reading this and are UK based or in London on 28th June please do come along, it’ll be a great night! https://m.facebook.com/events/592298321181327/
Curated by: Christos Doukakis
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