Monday, January 08, 2007

Think About Life INTERVIEW

Existentially correct
Brendan Murphy

Think About Life: A therapist's future wet dream

All is right with Think About Life's world as they debunk cynicism off the court

Since it's early January, it's time you started to think about life. Since that's sort of depressing, boring and kind of fruity, instead why not Think About Life? The local dance-pop punks have been all over the city since an incendiary performance at 2005's Pop Montreal and this year's release of their self-titled debut. Hour recently had a (basket) ball speaking to the group's singer, Martin Cesar.

Hour I guess I have to start by asking how this all got started.

Martin Cesar I guess since it's a question I've been asked before I'm going to repeat myself. So, uh, the band was formed by Graham [Van Pelt] and Matt [Shane] around June of 2005. Graham and Matt got together at the [now defunct] Electric Tractor and they started to jam with this little Casio keyboard and Matt on drums. Graham asked me to come jam with him at what is now known as Friendship Cove.

Hour There seems to be a mini-movement coming out of [venue/practice space/apartment] Friendship Cove that includes you guys, Giselle Numba One and local art-star Jack Dylan, among others. Is there something special in the beer down there?

Cesar I would say it's an artistic exchange that happens within in a space, where young and up-and-coming artists get together and share their ideas, goof around.

Hour I might be wrong, but a lot of the music I've heard there, especially Think About Life, seems to be decidedly uncynical. Is this because you're all not old enough to be jaded and bitter like much
of the city's music scene?

Cesar [Laughing] Yes, it's definitely a less cynical group, but I remember having a conversation with Jack this summer where I said in 10 years half our friends will probably be suicidal or in therapy of some kind. But we're good for now.

Hour When did you have the feeling that this group might take off as much as it has?

Cesar It was really our third jam together - the energy was extremely positive, and it was always what I wanted to do with individuals in a band. It was very open, Graham and Matt specifically were very open to anything.

Hour Your MySpace page says that Think About Life is "a black guy, a hipster, and an albino." Who's who?

Cesar I'm the black guy, Graham is the albino, Matt's is the hipster; Brendan Reed plays with us now, so add a redhead to the mix. [Reed's other credits include: former member of the Arcade Fire, current member of Les Angles Morts, The Letlowns, Noh Cars Go.]

Hour Recently, solo projects of yours [Cesar's Dishwasher and Van Pelt's Miracle Fortress] have been getting a lot of love - how do you balance them with the group?

Cesar Well, Dishwasher has been around my universe for five years now, since I was 17, and basically I decided to put it out from old recordings. Right now there's sort of a parallel [with what's being recorded with Think About Life], I'm recording new material and Graham's working on his Miracle Fortress LP.

Hour Finally, I wanted to ask about the recurring basketball theme that pops up everywhere with you guys. Where did that come from? It seems almost controversial for a Montreal band to be talking about a sport that isn't hockey.

Cesar [Laughing] It is kind of controversial. It mostly came from our dynamic of jamming together. Whenever we jam there's this energetic uproar that happens in the room and it feels like a basketball game or wrestling match and we decided to go with a basketball theme. You know, the fast-paced pass-the-ball, slam-dunk feeling.

Think About Life
w/ caUSE co-MOTION and Blankett
At Friendship Cove (215 Murray), Jan. 13


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