Interview: 5 Minutes with Middlemist Red

We sat down with one of Europe’s most treasured bands Middlemist Red who are set to release their new single “Evermore” via Mamazone on the 27th May. The Budapest natives told us about previous shows experiences, their inspiration and plans for the near future!

Hi guys, how are you and what are you up to today?

All good thank you. Just heard Radiohead’s highly anticipated new LP, they can always come up with something unexpected with each album, it’s quite inspiring. We’re about to book a studio this weekend to record a new song which is pretty exciting as well.

To those not familiar with you, how would you describe your sound?

I think a 20 year old can enjoy our music as much as his/her grandparents since we are very open-minded when it comes to music. We certainly love the psychedelic-rock scene of the 60s-70s but there are plenty of great bands from the last couple decades whose music is just as influential to us. Lately we’ve been experimenting with synthesizers and guitar effects to achieve a more exciting overall sound.

Can you name the albums and artists that have influenced you the most?

There are plenty of them. All four of us listens to all kinds of music but of course we have general favorites, just to name a few: The Horrors, The Black Angels, Tame Impala, The Doors, Radiohead etc. Each band has many great records so it’s hard to choose just one.

Which other artists are you into at the moment and why?

I must mention Mac Demarco and Unknown Mortal Orchestra, both of them have made really cool albums in such short time. On the heavier side, Thee Oh Sees records often come up while being on the road. We love the very typical and unique sound these artists have.

What would we find under the category of “Guilty pleasures” in your music collection?

On the way to Eurosonic-Noorderslaag from Budapest (just a short 18 hour drive) we were listening to all the famous nu-metal bands such as Linkin Park, System of a Down or Limp Bizkit and a few Cypress Hill tunes came up as well.

The UK music scene is certainly always changing. Some might say that at the moment it’s more electronic oriented. Do you think this makes it more difficult for indie/alternative acts to get recognition that it would have done ten years ago?

I don’t think so. Since it’s always changing you’ll never know when guitar-based indie/alternative bands will be at the front again, but they shouldn’t worry about what’s the trend at the moment if they love what they’re making as artists. Also this electronic oriented scene can encourage bands to try out different sounds and equipments which may improve their thinking towards music and that’s not a bad thing at all.

If not the popularity of electronic music, what would you say some of the challenges indie bands face today in the music industry today?

Spreading your music became much easier thanks to the internet but at the same time it became easier for everyone else too. There’s so much going on it’s impossible to keep track. Luckily there are more and more showcase festivals which are great for young emerging bands. We’ve been to a few now and it does help in reaching out to people but there is a lot of hard work behind it.

Where do you gather songwriting inspiration?
Just the fact that you and your best friends create something from scratch together is very inspiring. Most of the time it’s an unconscious thing, millions of different things can have an impact on a certain song and I think thats the beauty of it.

What’s the best gig you have ever done and why?

Gladly we’ve got dozens of great memories from concerts. It may have not been the best, but our first LP release gig was the most memorable one I think. We played at one of Budapest’s best club (it’s actually a ship) and it was the first time we played in front of a full house. There were projectors and amazing visuals all over the place which made it a really special and spectacular night. If you type “Middlemist Red album release concert” in youtube, there’s a short video of it.

And the worst?

In early 2014 we’ve only had an EP out but we had the opportunity to play at Sziget Festival on a pretty decent stage which was a huge deal. Unfortunately right after two songs David’s (our lead guitarist) guitar went mute and we were so broke at the time we couldn’t afford a back-up guitar. Our singer (Soma) had to lend his cheap old guitar to David and we kept on playing and sweating. People told us afterwards that the gig was all fine but we were really desperate up there when all that happened.. still having nightmares.

If you weren’t a musician what would you be?

Our singer Soma is studying graphic design and animation, that’s pretty cool. We’ve got another fellow named Soma (our bass player) who’s currently working in a bar and has a great sense for organizing events/gigs. David (guitarist) is finishing his studies in mechanical engineering and I (drums) can imagine myself organizing gigs and doing PR stuff at a nice club.

Do you have any particular gigs or festivals that you dream about playing?

We’d love to play at Glastonbury Festival of course, Coachella would be another huge step alongside with Lollapalooza. The #1 is the Austin Psych Fest (it’s called Levitation nowadays) which would be a total blast for us since most bands that we love usually play there and the whole atmosphere is amazing.

Do you have any information regarding upcoming releases, projects or gigs in the pipeline that you would like to tell us about?

We’re about to record another new song from our upcoming 2nd album which will hopefully come out this year. We’d like to mention that on the 20th of May we’re going to play in Brighton at the Alternative Great Escape. On June 3rd we’re playing in France at Europavox. July 2nd will be VOLT Festival here in Hungary and we just got our confirmation at Sziget for August 11th.