Archive for April, 2008

True Live Interview

Friday, April 25th, 2008 | Interviews | 1 Comment
True Live Interview

Hey guys, thanks for taking the time to catch up… for those who have just heard you recently, who’s in True Live, and where did you all hook up?

True Live started as a loose pool of players involved in a regular jam night in melbourne, which progressed to become the core 6 piece unit you see these days. The band is made up of MC Rhyno, Thomas Butt (double bass), Tamil Rogeon (violin), Tim Blake (cello), Joel Mammone (drums) and Thai Mattus (keys). We cut our teeth playing our fingers off at shows around Melbourne every week for about years, as the profile slowly grew around us.

New single “Damn Right” dropped recently, when can we expect a second album?

The new album is in the final stages of production at the moment, and we are hoping for a mid-year release for it.

What’s the plan for the next couple years? Any countries you are interested to work in?

We’re talking to a label in Japan about a tour over there, and we have a few gigs penciled in across Europe and America that we’re working towards at present. It’s early days still for our international presence, as we’ve been really focusing on our presence in Australia and the new record.

You guys really shine in your live performance… Does that have anything to do with your name?

I guess that with a name like ours, which was actually merely a way to describe the original weekly gig we were playing, we have to put on a good show. We are all working musicians who make a living doing what we love, and in this industry if you don’t perform then you don’t get any gigs, so we’ve all learned these lessons the hard way. You have to play every single note as if your life depends on it, cos in a way, it does. And in my opinion it’s this attitude that makes a real performer great.

In the Australian Hip Hop scene you stand out from most other groups as conscious lyrically, and organic musically. Have you got any love for other Australian Hip Hop groups?

We don’t really see ourselves as a hip hop band so much as simply a band, which stops us from getting too bogged down playing a genre and frees us up to think about the music we write and play in a fresh way. Of course we draw from hip hop, but we also listen to a lot of soul, electronica, metal and jazz. We are good friends with many Australian hop hop artists, and plan on working with many more in the future. The upcoming Uni-fied tour is a testament to the universal appeal of what we are trying to do.

What about current international artists… who’s got True Live’s Attention in the Live / Jazz or Hip Hop scene?

I’ve been listening to a lot of J Dilla lately, as well as Gnarls Barkley’s latest release, Pete Philly en Perquisite and the new album by Autechre. They’re all great, strong albums.

Jazz seems to be neglected these days, at least as far as touring goes. How do you find audiences react to your full live instrument performances and solo’s?

The jazz element of a true live show is often a great release, as we place the moments throughout the set to help the whole performance breathe. We find this is much more effective than overkill, where too much of a good thing loses impact. The audience seems to really engage with the soloist, and from the volume of the cheers after a good solo, it appears to be very well received.

I know some of the group members have little side projects outside of True Live. Anything we should look out for that you guys are working on?

Rhyno and Tamil are at working on The Raah Project, where they wrote for and recorded an orchestra, then took the result and chopped and screwed it and added electronic beats, vocals, synths and all sorts of other things. Joel is involved with the Bad Boys Batucada and CMW, a hard edged hip hop project that I’ll be contributing some beats to, and Thai is always busy with his crazy jazzish band the 12 Tone Diamonds.

Were Black Eyed Peas better with or without Fergie?

I wouldn’t like to gossip, but I will say that when I saw them support Roni Size in 1998 (pre- Fergie) they were pretty damn good.

Will True Live ever bring a girl to the group? Who would it be if you did???

We do have female guest and backing vocals on our current album, and the new album will also have girls adding to the sound. generally it has all been to the end of creating a good solid bed to support Rhyno’s vocals, as opposed to an attempt to sex up an all-boy band. We have been touring with Bec Ari recently, who has been great.

Cool, thanks for taking the time… looking forward to the new album… what’s it called?

Now that would be telling…


Thanks for having me.

You can check out more from True Live at:

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