Red Mass: The WL Interview

Purveyor of: Global conglomerate punk

File next to: CPC Gangbangs, The Spits, Uranium Club, Jay Reatard

Playing: Wavelength Summer Music & Arts Festival Night Two, Sunday August 18 @ Stackt. Get tickets here!

Montreal avant-garage rock collective Red Mass is a gathering of artists, musicians and agent provocateurs from around the globe. The present core of “Red Mass” is comprised of Roy Vucino and partner Hannah Lewis. Wavelength’s Jennifer Xu brings you insight on what influences their music creation and performance.

What were your favorite moments when creating your latest album Kilrush Drive?

Our best moments during the creation of the album were being in Brooklyn, working with Martin Bisi (producer of Sonic Youth, Afrika Bambaataa and so on). It was incredible to be in the room with him and to see and be part of his process.

How do you play off on your audience’s energy at shows? (Do things tend to get broken when the energy is very high?)

We have had extremely varied shows and lineups over the years, so I don’t think there is necessarily a constant in our performance style. Depending on who we have on stage and our intent for that particular show, you may descend into madness or may be a serious affair. We definitely take the audience into consideration for the mood created during the performance. As for breaking things… it has happened

How has touring influenced your music or perspective on music-making?

Touring has been a huge influence on our music and how we approach projects. Red Mass is, firstly, a giant recording project. We have spent years recording over 100 songs with people around the world. Some friends, some strangers. Because of the amazing people we met along the way we have tried to create a network, a living organism, a body of music tied together by a global sense of community and conversation. Fuck genre, fuck the rules, just see what you can do out of your comfort zone and have fun learning from your peers.

What should we look out for next? New releases, upcoming tours, etc?

We have “A Hopeless Noise” coming out rather soon. This really embodies our ethic of working with a vast amount of people. We spent five years recording the songs and gathering input from many musicians we know and a few we approached out of the blue. Some of the artists featured are King Khan, Mike Watt, Rick Froberg [Drive Like Jehu, Hot Snakes, Obits], and Mac deMarco. We will be touring the EU in February with UTurn booking and have been doing a monthly residency at the Gold Sounds in Brooklyn that will end in March.

If you had to describe Red Mass as a food, what would it be?