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Gavin's Underground

Mathematics Et Cetera, Super Buttery Muffins

by Gavin Sheehan
- Posted // 2010-02-01 -

If your eye hadn't caught it this week, a couple of the live concerts up in Park City actually rose in price at the door overnight. Don't know why you'd want to do that to the average patron who are already spending a pretty penny just being in the city at that moment, but down in the valley a lot of the local-only shows were dirt cheap and packed!

This week I made my over to The Urban Lounge for a performance from our old friends, Palace Of Buddies, as well as the experimental five piece Mathematics Et Cetera, and the poppy progressive rock of Super Buttery Muffins! I got to chat with the later two, and took plenty of unprofessionally blurry photos from the show. (For this particular interview, Mathematics chose to answer as a band.)

Mathematics Et Cetera (Tom, Pastor, Maht, Joscef and Liz)

http://www.myspace.com/mathematicsetcetera

Gavin: Hey guys, first off, tell us a little about yourselves.

MEC: The band is four Utahns and one Nevadan. Been playing based outta Provo since 2005 up until this past summer when we relocated to SLC. Band is: Liz Lightfoot, Joscef Castor, Maht Paulos, Pastor, L. Tom Perry.

Gavin: What got you interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?

MEC: Oldest and youngest in the band are twelve years apart, so there are varied influences, fer-shure. Influential genre's amongst us include Progressive & Psychedelic Rock, Alternative & Indie Rock, Post Punk & Post Rock.

Gavin: How did you all get together to form Mathematics Et Cetera?

MEC: The current incarnation of the band came together unexpectedly this past summer. We kinda thought the band had run its course, then Tom Perry from The Weak Men came back home to Utah after dropping out of law school and we all started hanging out. He convinced us Mathematics had some rock left in her, so then we asked him to join the band. Liz joined as well, and the rest is unknown Utah rock band history!

Gavin: A lot of your music, while rock oriented, borders on experimental and near electronica. What influenced that style of music as your main sound?

MEC: Since Tom joined the band I think we've delved further into our experimental side. He adds this really cool psychedelic aspect to the band with his guitar playing. We want to keep perusing our more experimental influences.

Gavin: Being a five piece, how was it for you blending musical styles and perfecting your sound for both live shows and recordings?

MEC: It really wasn't until this past summer that we became a real band. We were in a situation where we just got to hang out with each other and play music all the time. We rehearsed for like four months before playing a show with the new lineup. I think that it really gave us time to get to know each other musically.

Gavin: In 2005 you released the Graves EP. What was the recording process like for you, and what issues did you come across while doing it?

MEC: We recorded Graves on a ZIP disk digital eight track and at a student BYU recording studio. Pechrifyd and Sweet Tooth were student projects that friends of ours did. It was a really fun time for us. We self released it in handmade textile sleeves a friend sewed for us.

Gavin: Do you prefer the DIY style or do you wish you had a studio to record it in?

MEC: We've just gone with what we've had so far in recording, and it's worked out I guess. We've really enjoyed the freedom of home recording, but will be recording our next EP live in a studio. We're excited to capture the energy of our live set for the first time in a recording.

Gavin: What did you think of the public reaction to it when the album finally came out?

MEC: A few of our friends and fellow musicians have liked what we do, but we've never been able to reach a very wide audience.

Gavin: You followed it up in 2007 with the EP, Eye Contact Is No Guarantee. How was recording and releasing the second time around with a fanbase behind you?

MEC: It took us a while to finish Eye Contact. It was recorded track by track, and took over a year to finish. It was nice to finally have sometime else for people to listen to.

Gavin: What made you decide to start up “Lords of Love Gods of Grace” as a collective/label?

MEC: LOLGOG is still more in idea form than a real entity at this point. The two Mathematics Et Cetera EPs were self released, but when I can get my hands on some damn money I would love to press them to vinyl on the LOLGOG label.

Gavin: Are there any plans in the works for a new album or are you just playing gigs for now?

MEC: We are heading in to the studio in February to do another EP. We can't wait to get some new music out there.

Gavin: A bit state-wide, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?

MEC: We've played at Velour, Urban, Kilby, & The Compound (in Provo) in the last four months, and we've loved what each venue is doing. It blows our minds that all this is happening in this state. Running any venue in Utah is really a labor of love, and we appreciate the amazing people that are half ruining their lives to run them.

Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it bigger or better?

MEC: I think having as many radical national bands come through is the best thing. Urban/Kilby plus The Twilight Concert Series are doing an amazing job bringing the best new music to Utah. Can't help but influence for the better all us concert goers to see this awesome stuff.

Gavin: Aside yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?

MEC: The Devil Whale, The Future Of The Ghost, The John Whites, Uzi & Ari, TaughtMe, Palace Of Buddies, Birthquake, Will Sartain, The Eden Express, Super Buttery Muffins, 90's Television, John-Ross Boyce & His Troubles to name a few. So many amazing bands in Utah!

Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio these days and how its affecting local artists?

MEC: KRCL is really cool. It's a barren waste land for good radio in Utah County, so having a real independent station is awesome. They have done a great job featuring & promoting local music.

Gavin: What's your take on file sharing these days and how it affects you as a musician?

MEC: I grew up on Napster. Downloading music illegally is the only reason I listen to good music today. We would all be totally excited if there were torrents of our albums up online that the kids were downloading. Those kids may later come to a show, buy a t-shirt or whatever. Selling albums is not a realistic way to monetize a band anymore, and hasn't been for years, so bands just gotta adapt.

Gavin: What can we expect from you guys over the rest of the year?

MEC: We'll release at least an EP and some singles and hopefully go on a couple tours this year. No solid plans, but hopefully we can make some stuff happen!

Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to plug or promote?

MEC: InYourSpeakers.com is a rad Music News/Review site our friend Matt Midgley and Co run. It's awesome.


Super Buttery Muffins (Will Sartain, Chaz Prymek, Brian Pickes and Ryan Fedor. Tim & Patrick not pictured)

http://www.myspace.com/butterymuffins

Gavin:
Hey guys, first off, tell us a little about yourselves.

Ryan: Hi, we're Super Buttery Muffins. Me, Will, Brian, Chaz, Patrick, and Tim. We enjoy delicious food and rock and roll.

Pickles: I'm a 32 year-old, semi-employed male. Idling out

Gavin: What got you interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?

Pickles: I remember being sort of exhilarated by the "Airwolf" theme, but mostly by hearing music in skate and snowboard videos. Sonic Youth at Lollapalooza '95 left a strong impression. Descendents' Somery. Among other things.

Ryan: I remember discovering and borrowing three different records from my dad's record collection when I was young. The Monkees - "I'm A Believer"/"I'm Not Your Stepping Stone", The Beatles - "Hey Jude"/'Revolution" and Creedence Clearwater Revival - "Bad Moon Rising"/"Lodi". I played them obsessively. My dad also used to make me mix tapes of humorous songs from the 60's and Beach Boys compilations.

Gavin: How did you all get together to form Super Buttery Muffins?

Ryan: It used to be just me and Will. Then it was me, Will, Chad, and Brian, now we are this. Most of the time, Some of the time Patrick didn't come to any of the practices for our last show so Tim showed up and played instead. We might have to kick Patrick out for a while, just to make him shape up.

Pickles: I saw Ryan and Will play together, years ago, and liked what they were doing. I asked Ryan if I could come play w/'em. Chaz' origins are unknown. I believe he is some sort of gypsy-nomad, wizard, or elf. He charmed us with his advanced playing skills and his easy-going nature. He projects good vibes. Tim is a recent addition, and has a lot of catching up to do. Our catalog of songs is extensive.

Gavin: Most of you play in different bands or solo acts, some of which being very prominent in our music scene. What kind of challenge is it making a sound that doesn't sound like your other projects?

Pickles: I don't really have any other projects except for the 1h86335 thing, and that has a different approach. With the Muffins, most of the players are inclined towards an identifiable, structured form of rock music with riffs, repetition, and possible hooks. This is a challenge to me, cause I'm not a very developed player.

Ryan: I don't think or worry about it so it's really no challenge at all.

Gavin: How was it for you having the song "Twenty Four" on the second Death By Salt complication?

Ryan: It was a treat and we are proud of being on it. Props to SLUG for putting those out.

Pickles: It was an honor to support Ryan's conclusive mathematical findings in a song form, on a true CD format. It was fun working with Jeremy Smith.. Where is that kid anyhow? The recording still holds up!

Gavin: Aside from some live recordings, you haven't done any official releases as a band. Are there any plans to release the work you've built up?

Pickles: It's been talked about, but that's about as far as it goes. Hopefully something soon.

Ryan: We are looking to release a banging 7" single of our hit songs "Twenty Four" and "Sugar" if anyone wants to put it out. We may have to do it ourselves on limited edition cassette tapes.

Gavin: Has there even been talk of taking the band on the road for a tour, or is it more of a fun project for a hometown crowd to check out?

Ryan: We would consider touring local bakeries in exchange for pastries, we could play real quiet.

Pickles: It seems more like a fun/side project for these regularly active scene veterans.

Gavin: A bit state-wide, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?

Pickles: I'm out of touch, don't get out to see local music enough, but it seems like there are still a lot of local bands with interchangeable/shared members, which makes bands and their music less interesting to me. It lessens any distinctive personality that a band could develop with a more contained type of model. I'm guessing there are a number of younger bands with a lot of energy that I'm unaware of. The quality and quantity of local music acts seems proportionate to the size of the scene, as it probably is in any other town, I imagine.

Ryan: Palace Of Buddies are a wonderful band, I highly recommend walking into Slowtrain records and buying their self-titled album. There's also a pretty neat and talented drone/noise community here.

Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it bigger or better?

Ryan: Yes, but it involves money and believers and there seems to be a rather large influx of atheists right now.

Pickles: I don't know. Maybe more objective music criticism. It's hard to say.

Gavin: Aside yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?

Pickles: Palace Of Buddies is a formidable live act, and they have cool songs. haven't heard/seen much else lately.

Ryan: Palace Of Buddies, VCR5, Ether/Ether Orchestra, Vile Blue Shades, Red Bennies, Stag Hare.

Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio these days and how its affecting local artists?

Ryan: Brad Wheeler, Circus Brown and lots of other people at KRCL have been really good to many of us and I salute them. Portia Early on UtahFM has also been a fervent and vocal supporter of the locals. They are much appreciated.

Pickles: I have no opinion/idea on this. It seems like KRCL is pretty good about exposing local stuff. The Circus Brown show still hosts/broadcasts local acts?

Gavin: What's your take on file sharing these days and how it affects you as a musician?

Pickles: It enables me to hear out-of-print/rare/unusual records, satisfy nostalgic urges to hear old, familiar stuff, and it's useful for previewing current music releases before purchasing them. I don't know what sort of impact it has on musicians/the record industry. I think it might have an effect on the quality of music that gets released, in that it possibly creates a higher standard, which is good. The record industry seems to be deteriorating.

Ryan: File sharing is promotion, so get on board dinosaurs. I don't have the energy or time to worry or think about what people are going to do with the music once it's out of our heads and hands and flowing through the magical pipes of the interweb. If you love it, support it. If you can't pay for it, share it and promote it. Let that light shine.

Gavin: What can we expect from you guys over the rest of the year?

Ryan: A new wave of enthusiasm and ideally, a single or EP.

Pickles: Hopefully some new material!

Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to plug or promote?


Ryan:
Palace Of Buddies. Patrick Munger. Trent Call. Sri Whipple. Charlie Perry's awesome food at Eva Restaurant.

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