Roundtable Interview With Mutiny Part I
Edison, New Jersey's Mutiny have been rocking in their current line-up since May of 2006. Brandishing everything heavy -- from face melting solos to blast beats, they continue to create their unique brand of technical metal. Nonetheless, Mutiny's sonic output comes back to rest on heavy grooves and melodies.
With an average age of 18, Mutiny have a lifetime in front of them. Even so, they've already played countless shows, with the likes of Danzig, WASP, 3 Inches of Blood, and are moving on to play the Bamboozle Festival alongside My Chemical Romance, Linkin Park, and Killswitch Engage.
I caught up with Mutiny for some Chinese food and throwing of a frisbee. What follows is a conversation with all five band members: bassist and vocalist Andrew Jacobs, aka AJ, his brother Brandon Jacobs on guitar, Lu Obregon also on guitar, Drew Stavola on keys, and Sam Paulicelli on drums.
STEVE: Guys, how's everybody doing? What's going on?
Lu: Really good.
STEVE: First, I'd like to get some basic vital information [on the band]. When did you first start making music together?
Samus: Ask him [points to AJ]
AJ: Oh, let's see. [camera zooms in] Oh Jesus Christ. I would say about [camera moves inches from AJ's face]...I'm very comfortable by the way. I would say....Are you serious?
STEVE: Haha, I'm recording.
AJ: Six years ago Mutiny got started, and started making music. We started off with some keyboard stuff, you know? Some cool shit like that. Then it moved on to these guys [motions to band mates around him] and now, we talk about everything. And [the riffs]...Years in the making, these riffs. The riffs don't come easy dude, they don't come easy. But when they happen, they get through everybody. Then they fucking rock man.
STEVE: Any other thoughts on that one? On the origins of Mutiny?
Lu: This line-up happened May of last year.
AJ: That's when we played our first show, right?
Samus: Me and Drew--
Lu: That's when Sam was officially in the band. So Sam was the last new member to be added. It's almost the one year anniversary. [turns to Sam] Drew was in the band before you. Sorry. [laughs]
AJ: Yeah, about a year now.
STEVE: That answered my next question on all the band members: original, or not original?
Lu: He's the only original member [points to AJ].
STEVE: The only original member?
AJ: In my opinion, this is first line-up, because nothing was this serious before.
STEVE: How much time do you guys spend together outside of the band?
Samus: Like every day.
Lu: Every day. Probably 5 or 6 times a week.
Drew: Eight times a week. [a few laughs]
Lu: Yeah, eight times a week.
Samus: Yeah, we hang out eight times a week.
STEVE: Eight, that's an exact number?
Everybody: Probably more.
AJ: We don't have friends any more.
Lu: Yeah, we don't.
AJ: We're either rocking or chilling as friends.
STEVE: What do those activities include when you're chilling as friends?
Samus: South Park.
Lu: Family Guy.
Samus: Applebees hates us.
STEVE: Why? Why does Applebees hate you guys?
Samus: Because we're there every night, and we always request the booth [the biggest seat in the house--all the way in the corner].
STEVE: So what's wrong with that? You pay, don't you?
Samus: Drew comes in there and causes a ruckus.
Drew: [in a confident, unapologetic tone] Yeah.
Samus: He writes his name on the wall.
STEVE: In what?
AJ: Yeah, he leaves a mess.
Drew: With Mutiny marker.
STEVE: Very cool. Mutiny marker. Did they wash it off?
STEVE: Alright. Mutiny makes a lasting impression. Now, what metal musicians have inspired Mutiny?
Brandon: I'd start off with Alexi Laiho [Children of Bodom] and Michael Romeo [Symphony X].Yeah, just Symphony X and Bodom, man. In Flames too, we're really inspired by them.
STEVE: How about non metal musicians?
Drew: Victor Wooten.
Brandon: Victor Wooten, yeah.
Lu: We're big on classical, too. Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, all that stuff.
Samus: We already broke Bach though. [Breaking Bach is the title of a Mutiny tune].
STEVE: Yeah, so I hear.
AJ: And that started off with a lot of punk. We all kind of did in some way.
STEVE: Yeah, I remember watching a "making of"...I think it was Twisted Within Lies. I forget who filmed it. I watched it on YouTube, and I could never find it again. It was the making of Breaking Bach. Brandon, you were playing the main riff, and AJ, you were playing
that, and I think AJ, you suggested instead of going with thrash, add...right out of the beginning...more of a punk beat...
AJ: Yeah, yeah.
Samus: That was Twisted Within Lies dude. Fat John was there. That was the first Mutiny rehearsal [with the current lineup] ever. It was me and these two [points to Brandon and AJ].
Brandon: That's when we met Sam.
Lu: I had never met Sam at that time.
STEVE: How long ago was that?
Lu: In May of last year.
AJ: Right after my birthday.
STEVE: How did you guys meet up?
AJ: The four of us [motions to himself, Lu, Brandon, and Drew] were set, and we were looking for a drummer. We got an email from this guy back here, and he's like, I'll drum for you guys.
Lu: Yeah. [He said] Check out my video!
Brandon: We saw his video, and we were all bugging out. [Go to youtube.com, and search 66Samus to check out his drumming chops].
AJ: Then we came over here [to Samus' house] and set up a day, ya know. I'm looking at him, and I'm like, yo, this guy is definitely the shit.
Samus: I thought the exact opposite of him.
AJ: Yeah, he thought the exact opposite.
Samus: My friend Fat John/Mudskid and I were chilling in my driveway. These two [Brandon and AJ] roll up in a Lexus...wait...hold on...[farts]. Ok.
STEVE: God bless you.
Samus: And AJ gets out of the car.."Yo, wassup bro?" I'm like, what is this? Rap metal? Is this Limp Bizkit or something?
AJ: Short hair.
Samus: Yeah, I see the short hair. They get upstairs, and all of a sudden I see...[makes noise and sweeping motion on an air guitar].
AJ: Then I busted out one of the newest riffs from Twisted Within Lies, and I was like, what can you do with this? All of a sudden, blast beats, fills, all that crazy shit.
STEVE: Well, what's Mutiny's record company/label situation? What are your plans with that?
Brandon: Trying to get signed soon, hopefully.
Drew: Yeah, a demo.
Lu: We've got [contacts at] RoadRunner Records, Nuclear Blast...
Samus: Nuclear Blast is not looking at us.
Lu: They gave us their number.
AJ: Basically, we're self producing the demo. We're going to make press kits and send 'em around the world and see who likes it. Hopefully we'll get picked up and put on a tour.
Brandon: That would be cool.
AJ: We're making the demo at....[points to Sam]....
STEVE: 66Samus Studios?
Samus: [points behind camera to his house, where a window is open] You see that window that's open? That's it. The far right window.
STEVE: The far right window, that's the Mutiny window? I can only imagine what comes out of that.
Samus: That's where Drew gets fucked in the ass every night after practice. Sorry Drew.
AJ: Drew's like...yep.
Samus: That's why my asshole hurts all the time!
Drew: Good job.
STEVE: What do you guys think would come first, a full Mutiny album, or a record deal?
Everybody: Record deal.
STEVE: Alright. Some metal bands pride themselves on being true blue metal, but you know, they really aren't...So what sets you guys apart from those pussies?
Lu: We were told once--
Samus: We play with ALL BALLS alright!
Lu: We were told once, we're not trying to be metal, we are metal. I can't really remember exactly who said that, but it was at one of our recent shows, and they were very impressed by what we do.
Samus: We don't try to do anything, we just get up there and rock.
Lu: Yeah, whatever we--
Samus: Whatever comes out, that's it, and we play balls out all the time..
Lu: No holds barred.
Samus: Yeah, I broke a drumstick during the first five minutes of our last show. It was a brand new stick.
Brandon: Basically, that's how it is with writing too. Whatever sounds good, you know. Me and AJ usually start off with a riff or idea, and we never had music theory or anything like that, yeah...and just whatever sounds good...we make harmonies...that's how songs are written.
Samus: If a person in the band does not like one riff, it gets changed.
AJ: Even more about that. If the first time you show somebody a new riff and they're not going crazy, then it's not gonna happen. And more on that. I remember coming out of a show, I said to one of the fans I talked to after,I was like, yeah, I worry sometimes our music is too light or some of our music is too happy or whatever, and the guy said, 'Dude, you can't get any heavier than that'. And that's what made me realize, we're gonna keep doing this melodic stuff, 'cause it's coming out heavy.
This conlcudes Part I of the Roundtable Interview with Mutiny. Part II will be following shortly.
For more on Mutiny, you can check them out on the web at myspace.com/mutinynj. If you desire some visual aids, Mutiny also has their YouTube Channel.
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