An Interview with Matt Lowell (Lo Moon)

For some reason I recently had Beatles on the brain, specifically the early years of their madness-inducing mop tops. I started to think about those early interviews of theirs, and then started to look up some of those early pressers. I was taken aback by just how many times the foursome was asked about money and marriage, but there were some gems amongst the clunkers. And so, inspired by the early press conferences of the Beatles, I decided to ask some of those very same questions.

If you're not there yet, you've still got time to hop on the Lo Moon bandwagon. This Los Angeles outfit makes some of the most smolderingly intimate, mercurial and magnetic dreampop (with bite) that you're likely to listen to. To say I'm excited about the release of their self-titled debut record (out February 23) and tour (stopping in DC in March) is the biggest of understatements.

Lo Moon's angelically smoky-voiced Matt Lowell gamely answered these Beatles-y questions of mine, and you should definitely listen to some of his handiwork as you read on. And get ready to buy the record. And buy a ticket to see them on tour...

Go ahead and join me on the bandwagon, won't you?
Fuzzy Logic: What has been your most exciting moment in the last year?

Matt Lowell: It’s all been very exciting. Every day was almost better than the last. It was amazing to play in the UK and Europe for the first time and we supported some incredible acts like Phoenix, London Grammar, The Lemon Twigs, and The War On Drugs. It was all pretty surreal to be honest.

FL: Who are your favorite recording artists?

ML: There’s really too many to put into one list. I would say we love Talk Talk, and Radiohead, and The Blue Nile, The War On Drugs, SZA, and modern composers like Johann Johanssen, Nils Frahm, and Olafur Arnolds. This could actually go on all day.

FL: Do you feel safe riding in airplanes?

ML: Yes. You get used to it the more you do it.

FL: Does every city look the same?

ML: Of course not. Every city feels very different and unique to its history and culture.

FL: What message are you trying to get across, if any?

ML: I think there’s always a hopeful message in each one of our songs, even through the sadness or the struggle or pain in a relationship. We are all trying to tap into true emotions and bring that out through the music.

FL: How would you describe yourself in one word?

ML: Passionate.

FL: Where would you like to go that you haven't gone yet?

ML: Iceland.

FL: Do you feel that you're setting a new trend in music?

ML: I don’t know about a NEW trend in music, but I do feel like we aren’t completely connected to what's popular in todays musical landscape. If that sets us apart then we think that’s great!

FL: What kinds of guitars do you use?

ML: Sam uses both a Fender Jazzmaster and a vintage Gretsch Country Club. I use my 1970s Gibson SG and a Fender Tele most of the time. Santa uses a Fender Mustang shortscale bass.

FL: Does anybody ever ask you for advice?

ML: Sometimes other musicians ask for advice. The only advice I give them is to commit to the art and keep going, keep creating. The only people that tell you it can’t be done are the ones that never fully tried.

FL: How do you prefer for your fans to act at your concerts?

ML: I don't care really. If they are in the room then that’s amazing!

FL: How do you go about writing your songs?

ML: It’s a process that usually starts with a groove and some chords and me babbling some gibberish vocal melodies. We get together as a band once that's a bit established and jam on it and see what comes out of it. Once there seems to be a direction and an emotional connection, I’ll start writing lyrics and final melodies. These can change up until the final mix though. We’re constantly tinkering.

FL: What do you call your sound?

ML: I don’t really have a name for it. Genre defining in music is bizarre to me.

FL: Have you ever had a mental block-out on stage?

ML: Yes. I had a bad one in Antwerp, Belgium when we were opening for London Grammar.

FL: What are your unfulfilled ambitions?

ML: Too many to name. I am very ambitious lol. BUT these days it’s just taking everything day by day.

FL: What advice do you have for teenagers?

ML: Keep discovering yourself and stay passionate and committed to what you love. Teenage years are tough, there’s no real way around it.

FL: What is the closest you have come to losing life and limb?

ML: I’ve broken a few bones playing hockey, but nothing crazy. Knock on wood.

FL: Do you think of yourself more as an entertainer or a musician, or do you think it's more of a combination of the two?

ML: It must be a combination of both or it’s boring!

[posted 2.15.18]


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