Thursday, July 10, 2014

Artist Interview: The Welcome Matt's POP JUNK FLUFF and HYPE

San Francisco musician Matt Langlois, aka The Welcome Matt, is a tireless, fearless and fun artist. Touring, collaborating and recording continuously, the Bay Area-via-New England troubadour has had his work featured on  KFOG’s popular Local Scene CD twice, teamed up with renowned modern dance choreographer Christine Cali to co-create multi-day dance performances, and signed a publishing deal with Wixen Publishing. Along the way, he co-wrote a top-40 European hit “San Francisco,” by Cascada, recorded and released a video for his cover of David Bowie’s ‘DJ’, collaborated with Cali on another three-day production, ‘L.O.A.D.E.D.’ and launched a video series featuring other local artists guesting on his songs called 'Welcome Matt Wednesdays.' Amid all these accomplishments, he managed to sneak in recording a new collection of indie-rock goodness, “POP JUNK FLUFF and HYPE,” recorded at Lost Monkey Studios in Hayward, CA.   Advance notice on POP JUNK FLUFF and HYPE, which will be released July 16, is already attracting critical raves: "Pop Junk Fluff and Hype"...romps eagerly around the ears," wrote The Ringmaster Review. "Fiery rock guitars flame over the pop canvas whilst vocals and keys leap with energetic rigour and enterprise. It is a spellbinding mix of styles and flavours, electro and alternative rock... yet another impossible to ignore or resist piece of excellent rock ‘n’ roll."  
Langlois discussed the process and influences leading up to his latest batch of songs... and his next!
Q:Who do you count as major influences?
The Welcome Matt: David Bowie, The Kinks, The Clash, The Replacements, Aimee Mann, Blumfeld, Camper Van Beethoven, Devo, The Who, Blur, Roy Orbison and Gil Scott Heron.

Q: Can you name your top three albums?  
TWM:[I] first listened to these during pivotal points of my creative up bringing. They conjure a certain sense of longing:
Scary Monsters—David Bowie
London Calling—The Clash
Lola vs the Powerman Moneygoround—The Kinks

Q: When did you write your first song? 
TWM: 8th Grade “Right Back To the Center." I probably thought I was channeling John Lennon.

Q: What's your writing process like? Do you write everyday? 
TWM: Like all mechanisms of survival and coping with existence… eating, sleeping, staying healthy, not staying healthy, and dreaming. In other words it’s in constant motion…songs are always smoldering.

Q: How did you go about selecting the songs for POP JUNK FLUFF and HYPE? Did you have them all before you went into the studio or did the recording process inspire new material
TWM: Yes, I wrote a list of songs i thought that would work together sonically and conceptually.
Most songs come in batches… originally these came as a loose concept album.
I was originally going to name the CD “The Return of a generation xer," hence, “The Welcome Back.” Then “ Key of G" which is about shedding the past. After that comes songs with loose concepts of that person dealing with aspects of modern day life such as technology, government surveillance, mind control through consumerism, global warming ("A Hail Mary"). But the “Xer” leaves again [and] travels the world (Let’s Really Go) to gain perspective and makes a decision to “Cast a Line” toward living more life despite the negative effects of the current state of things (instead of throwing in the towel on the world in which he/she has come back to). I decided to simplify and name it POP JUNK FLUFF and HYPE.

Q: Describe the recording process for you?  
TWM: 4 cups of hacking out rough sketches of song arrangements with 3 tablespoons of tempo, mix in a layer of drum groove over a thick bed of bass, ( keep stirring !). All the while sprinkle over various guitars, synthesizers, percussion, maybe a little piano, roll it all around a preheated pan of vocals, shove it in your brain oven for a bunch of weeks until you’ve eaten and digested it all, and hope someday others will want to sit down at your table and enjoy a nice meal.

Q: Did songs take on different directions in the studio? What might be the most different result of what you brought with you to the studio?
TWM: Very often and most of the time I wonder how they’ll come out on the other side. 
More info @
Buy Cast A Line on itunes HERE
Listen to songs from POPJUNKFLUFF and HYPE performed LIVE. @The RiteSpot  3153 17th
July 17th 5:30pm (Pre-set performance for CALI&CO's You ARE HERE @ODC Theater)
then again @The Rite Spot 3153 17th July 20th 8:30pm

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