Mutemath’s Paul Meany: “Being in a band is like being in a live re-enactment of ‘This is Spinal Tap’”

By Azim AzmanEvents - 01 March 2013 9:00 AM | Updated 3:03 PM

Mutemath’s Paul Meany: “Being in a band is like being in a live re-enactment of ‘This is Spinal Tap’”

MUTEMATH, from left guitarist Todd Gummerman, singer/pianist Paul Meany, bassist Roy Mitchell-Cárdenas, and drummer Darren King | Photo:

2013’s edition of the Mosaic Music Festival has a line-up that promises a little bit of everything for everyone. One of the confirmed acts who will be bringing their brand of stripped down; dirty rock and roll is none other than Mutemath.

The New Orleans quartet is made up of keyboardist and lead singer Paul Meany, bassist Roy Mitchell-Cardenas, guitarist Todd Gummerman and drummer Darren King. For a four piece band though, they are able to produce a monumental sound that bring to mind the greats acts of yesteryear.

Listening to any of their tracks brings to mind rock from the late ’60s and ’70s. ‘Prytania’ from their latest album ‘Odd Soul’ sounds like an updated version of a Deep Purple track. The intro riff of the song is similar to Deep Purple’s ‘Strange Kind of Women’, only with a touch of synth added in. Being an indie band it’s expected that they don’t do “standard fare”; they can start off a song with a dreamscape-like introduction and then with a quick roll of the bass drums, break into a full-on rock anthem.   

Fans have raved about their “killer energy” in their live performances. With Paul’s vocals – which can be described as a mix between Incubus’s Brandon Boyd’s style and Chris Cornell’s melodic howl – and energy fronting the band, the Esplanade is about to get a major rocking in March. caught up with Mutemath’s Paul Meany for a quick chat.

You guys are quite big on promoting yourself on the digital space; at what point did you make the conscious decision to do so?

I guess it's the only constant really. Other forms of promotion seem to come and go, but for bands or whomever in general, social media has been a necessary part of getting the word out on whatever's going on. 

‘Blood Pressure’- Mutemath

The production of your second album pushed you guys almost to your breaking point. Was there any drama in the studio?

There's always drama, I just think as the years go by you learn how to manage it a little better.  Given the same circumstances we faced during our second record now, we'd probably just laugh at most of it. It's all usually petty and ego-driven. Being in a band is like being in a live re-enactment of ‘This is Spinal Tap’. 

Why did you release your 2009 EP ‘Spotlight’ on vinyl ? Any plans to release more stuff on vinyl?

We just wanted to put out something new since we hadn't in a while, and I hope we'll always be able to.

Your biggest musical influences?

U2, The Meters and Kraftwerk. 

‘Prytania’ - Mutemath

Describe the music you produce for the less-informed Singaporean music goers?

Big Beat Synth Rock. 

Critics have ascribed all sorts of adjectives to describe your music, have they been accurate and how do you feel about their attempts?

I always appreciate a good attempt. It's at least always more interesting than anything I would think of. 

How did the Mosaic Music Festival gig come up?

Very easy. We were asked if we'd like to play in Singapore. We love playing shows in new places, especially ones that we’ve never been before. So thank you for having us!

What can fans expect from you this March?

We'll be playing songs from all three of our records and hope to introduce a few new things if time permits.

Mosaic Music Festival 2013: Mutemath | 16 March | 7.30 pm | Esplanade Concert Hall | Tickets $25-$80