Monte Luna – Interview
Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: What type of artist are you?
ML: We are Monte Luna, a 2 piece doom band from Austin Texas. We have been together since 2015 and have since released an EP and a Full Length. We are signed to Argonauta Records and are preparing to tour Europe in October. We have done a Eastcoast/midwest tour and blasted around Texas spreading the love. We are a hard working band that will give you a performance you are not going to forget. There is nothing like us, there are a lot of bands in doom, but no one does what we do as good as we do it. Our live shows are a whole other element from our recorded music and that’s what we want to keep.
PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.
ML: James: I started playing music when I was around 18. For years up to then I had always enjoyed singing but playing had intimidated me. I tried drums when I was 11 and it was just too loud for my parent’s house so it deterred me. Eventually I started playing guitar because I really liked singing along with my friends who played music. My first band I was in was this terrible band I made with some friends in the Navy. We played a few shows in Virginia Beach and we sucked. After I got out of the Navy I went back up north and started a band called Chronoscope. When my ex-wife passed away I needed to find something that wouldnt lead me to drinking, music saved my life. That is where I really started to make some cool noise. I was much more serious about playing guitar and singing. I did that for about 3 years until I got a job in Buda Texas building Aquaponics systems and green houses. I really wanted to find an area that is accepting and much more into heavier music than the area I was in. Austin drew me in and I never looked back.
I actually met Phil via craigslist. I posted an add asking for a drummer who was into Neurosis, the Melvins, Shrinebuilder and the likes and he was the first to respond! Who would have thought!
Phil: I taught myself to play drums in the early 90’s and was in a bunch of different bands in the Indianapolis metal scene. Around 2009 I moved to Austin, TX and started doing a lot of drummer for hire work, recording and touring for many bands and artists. A couple years ago I was feeling burnt out and stagnant artistically and knew I had to play heavy music again. So I creeped craigslist looking for some people to jam with, typed “Neurosis” on the search and the rest is history. Haha!
PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
ML: The Melvins, Neurosis, Coffinworm, Eyehategod, Destroyer of Light, The Beatles. Danny Mcbride, David Cross, H.P. Lovecraft, Dungeons and Dragons, Darksouls, Bloodborne, Wretch.
PD: What are your dreams and goals?
ML: To Play Hellfest, and our goal for this year would be to have a successful European tour. Announcement soon, but we start October 25th in Italy, you heard it here first.
PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?
ML: We both write the songs, it is generally about Dungeons and Dragons lore that James writes lyrically, but that is the last step of our process. It is a lot of jamming and doing what feels right between us.We don’t believe in the “formula”. Music comes from within.
PD: How do you promote your band and shows?
ML: We flyer here in Austin, take out adds in the chronicle and on facebook, blast instagram with upcoming news and most importantly, we GO OUT TO OTHER BANDS SHOWS AND SUPPORT. People sometimes get this grand delusion thateverything will fall into your lap. Those people either A have tons of money to have people do it for them, or B they work hard at it. We work hard and it pays off. Dont let anyone tell you they made one post on fb about there show and they cant understand why people didnt come. Its because you didn’t care.
PD: What do you think about downloading music online?
ML: I love it! All our music is free currently at www.montelunatx.bandcamp.com. People are always going to download music, if they want physical copies they will buy them if you make them, we sold out of our tapes and cds very fast. The vinyl is not too far behind. We had to take it down from the bandcamp and put it on our big cartel because it was going quickly. We also believe in have limited run items so don’t expect us to put more up :).
PD: What’s your outlook on the record industry today?
ML: I think that there are a lot of amazing labels out there, Ripple, Heavy Psych, STB, Argonauta Records (our family) that keep this dream alive. We shouldnt get bogged down with the negative and keep ourselves and our communities moving forward toward making this something we can all thrive at.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
ML: The entire album The Eye of Every Storm by Neurosis. This album is beautiful beginning to end. We’ve Jammed this many nights and Neurosis brought us together as a band.
PD: What are some of your pet peeves?
ML: Bands that do not support other bands on the bill. A sure fire way to never play with us is to leave after your set. We all work, we all have jobs. Unless it is an emergency, if you want to get paid, stay and support.
PD: What is your proudest moment in music?
ML: There are a few, but I would say one of the best moments to date have been to play for both of our moms on our last US tour. Do this for the love of the people that support you or dont do this at all.
PD: Tell us about your next shows and why we should be there
August 16 – Indianapolis Indiana – Black Circle Brewing +
August 17 – Nashville TN – Bettys Grill +
August 18 – Louisville Kentucky – Mag Bar +
August 23 – New Orleans Louisiana – Suono Mazzi Cutting Edge Music Conference
August 24 – Lafayette Louisiana – Freetown Boom Boom Room
September 13 – Atlanta Georgia – 529 *
September 14 – Raleigh North Carolina – Slims Downtown *
* w/ Serial Hawk
+ w/ Conjurer
! w/ Rickshaw Billies Burger Patrol