Wednesday, August 3, 2011

RTBE Interview with: Majuscules

This will be an on going project of interviews with various artists. Today's guest is Brian John Maloney from Majuscules.
A few weeks ago I had he pleasure to review the bands newest release Aquarium Age, this interview goes more in-depth with the band.   

Rock the Body Electric:  How did the band start?  
Brian John Maloney:  Majuscules began initially by way of a few mutual introductions and the dissolution of other musical projects. Matt and I met and started developing some ideas on acoustic guitars over cold beverages.

There was an earlier version of the band that played a string of shows in 2009, but one dude bailed for time constraints/was in other bands/lived in Jersey, another dude got into a PhD program in Californy, Matt went Euro-trippin’ for a few months…

We started working on some new stuff when Matt came back and then sought a rhythm section to flesh the songs out. Ben (bass) and Julian (drums) came into the fold through some blend of interstellar providence & internet crapshoot. After writing and rehearsing with this ragtag group of misfits, we started playing out and have more recently working on some recording projects.

The Aqaurium Age EP is out right now and we’ve just recently finished recording a batch of four new songs which we hope to have available just about as soon as we can possibly get them mixed.

RtBE: Majuscules is an interesting name, any literary or type-setting enthusiasts in the band?

BJM: Perhaps no type-setting enthusiasts per se, but we officially have at least a passing interest in or aesthetic reverence for letterpress and print-making. Up the artisans!

As for literary interest and the weight of the canon, I think we’re poised to contribute to the conversation of experience in a hopefully meaningful way. I guess that’s probably the express intention in the creation of any art…

And I’d like to hope that there’s a bit of a literary sensibility to the lyrics, even though they are often intentionally oblique or terse. Favorite themes include bewilderment of the senses, the making of meaning, the absolute value of anything at all, the idea of perception/communication and of course, girls.

But as for the origin of the name Majuscules, it was a combination of the powerful m and jsounds, the slant association to the regal and the actual meaning of capital letters which has a host of connotations in its own right. I still think it’s pretty rad, but it requires explanation to nearly everyone who is not a graphic designer.

RtBE:  You seem to have a pretty well developed shoegaze vibe flowing through your songs, who are some of your influences? 

BJM: Sonically, this question is difficult to answer. Certainly an amalgam of thousands of absolutely seminal records released over the past 50 years. More precisely or seriously, pretty much everything Dischord ever put out, Rites of Spring and Fugazi closest to my heart, through to slacker greats like Dinosaur Jr. and Pavement and the earlier end of Modest Mouse’s catalog, plus some stoner stuff, protest songs and hippie stuff. If I’m going to rifle off a handful of bands who I’d like to cite as influences, which isn’t to say that I think we sound alike, I’ll go: David Bowie, Grateful Dead, Nirvana, Pixies, June of 44, Velvet Underground and those aforementioned.

RtBE: You have played a bunch in the Northeast, any particularly memorable shows stick out? 

BJM: I think all the shows have been memorable in some way, but sure, I guess some maybe more than others. If I were to pick one, I’d go with May 20 at Legion Bar. Good night, good lineup, good space. That was probably the most crowded show yet, so that always feels good.
RtBE: Plans to tour elsewhere?

BJM: We’ve done some lazy scheming/wishful thinking about expanding the range of where we can play, but the great constraints of Time, Money and Other Stuff will probably prevent that from happening. But a mid-Atlantic/southern edge sojourn and/or a California string seem like a possibility. Time will tell. If anyone wants to send us cross country, let us know.

RtBE:  What was the recording process like for Aquarium Age? 

BJM: We recorded those songs with Erick at Rock It in Greenpoint. That dude is as cool as they come, lots of sick gear and creative atmosphere. We did all of the instruments in three hours then went back later for vocals and mixing. In that sense there wasn’t too much of a process to it, it was sort of just like scheduling practices and I think the approach was probably about as relaxed which suits us fine.

The last session we just did for some new songs was a 42 hour straight blitz in the Philadelphia exurbs where over 100 beers were drank, which also suits us fine.

RtBE: "The Stone" is a long one, was it always intended that way or did it just come together?  Was it originally multiple songs it has some unique parts?

That song was intended to be long. I’m not sure anyone realized it was ten minutes until we were listening back… And it’s bookended by those sort of meandering instrumental parts, which is meant to represent the traditional arc of Story. There were discussions about breaking it up into different songs, but I thought, that it was more effective as this marathon track chronicling some agonizing reappraisal of the whole scene. Hopefully it works.

We hope it works too...For more on the band check out their blog here....catch them live August 19 at The Alamo (house) in New Brunswick, NJ or Saturday August 20 at Legion Bar in Brooklyn


  1. Thanks for posting this interview! Check Majuscules live August 19 at The Alamo (house) in New Brunswick, NJ. Ask a punk (or us) for the address. Saturday August 20 at Legion Bar in Brooklyn. More info on Facebook or

  2. Update the link at the bottom and put your live dates in as well. Keep on Rocking In the Free World....