CMJ 2009 Interview: Meeting Of Important People

Written By:

Gareth Jones

22nd October 2009
At 00:41 GMT

4 comment(s)

Pittsburgh collective Meeting Of Important People are only just breaking onto the indie scene, with their debut self-titled album being released on Authentik Artists, these folks really are set to storm the industry with a sound that seems to have come from a brawl between The Shins and early Weezer. 

With the Authentik shot of adrenaline we can see this debut being the catalyst to one extremely successful career, let's just hope the major labels steer clear of this gem. 

SG: You recently released your debut record, how has it been received so far and are you happy with its progress?  

MOIP: We've been blown away with people's reaction to our record, just been a really nice vibe of support from folks locally and around the states, people enjoying the songs and the energy of our band, the dark humour behind some of what we do. We were concerned at first that our album would be too poppy for the pitchfork set, and at the same time too strange for pop radio, but we've ended up having a good reaction from both camps.

SG: When was the album taken into the studio and can you tell us about the writing and recording process?

MOIP: Many of these songs had existed for a few years before we were even playing together, old songs that had been kicking around and needed the right group of people to record them together. Once we began playing together in 2007, we started with a lot of existing material, songs that I had been dying to play and hadn't had any outlet for until then. The whole record was planned from the best fit of songs we could find, plus some less "songy" tracks like the riff song and "list show".

SG: What did Meeting Of Important People get up to before your debut was released, how did you get to this position?  

MOIP: We had all been playing since we were kids in various Pittsburgh bands, and when i was about 20, a band i had called The You landed a record deal with a subsidiary of Sony-Epic. That all went to shit, but I learned more during that time than i ever have elsewhere. More importantly, we come from an incredible community of Pittsburgh bands - check em out: Donora, Lohio, Harlan Twins, Boca Chica, Landline, and countless others, like-minded bands of all different genres and style, but ridiculous amounts of imagination and talent.

SG: Have you ever been to NYC or CMJ before and what do you expect to get up to over the week?

MOIP: We've been having some really fun NYC-area shows since our record came out on the Authentik label this summer, including an opening slot for Merge Records' Ladybug Transistor and others. It's our first time at CMJ, and we don't have any expectations other than getting to finally meet some folks we've only spoken to over email, people at our label, etc.  also look forward to staying in Brooklyn with some dear friends of ours that we always force to play Mario Kart Wii til very late.

SG: What can you tell us about the nights you're performing at CMJ?

MOIP: We're honoured to be guests of the On Another Note label showcase, a great new New York label operated by our friends Jude and Jen. They're fans of MOIP and always include us in their showcases in the city, to which we're eternally grateful. Will be performing before an amazing three-piece from New York called Pet Ghost Project.

SG: What's been the best ever festival experience for you?

MOIP: Had a great appearance a few years back at the Cincinnati Midpoint Music Festival. We're also looking forward to participating this November in the Toronto International Pop Overthrow festival, have the passports dusted off for that one.

SG: What three artists would you compare with your band and who would you say were inspirations?

MOTIP: Nirvana, The Who, Loudon Wainright III. 

SG: Are there any artists that you've enjoyed specifically in 2009?

MOIP: It's been the year of incredible releases from some dear friends of ours. Boca Chica and Lohio come to mind as some of the best records I've heard in a long time. On the radio, we always love "Single Ladies" and stuff like that, all the big hits. Oh, and Megadeth.

SG: Do you plan to start working on your sophomore album any time soon or do you think you'll take a break before then?  

MOIP: We have an entire album worth of new stuff ready to go, things we think will be really amazing and present the band in an even more natural way than the last recording. Just waiting to see how we might release the thing, what format, who will be involved, and all that kind of thing.

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