The 99% Podcast Episode #29 with Myth
MYTH are a four-piece alternative rock band from Dublin. Their music consists of low-end rhythmic harmonies, fat, and haunting vocal melodies. In 2017, they released their debut single Idiots/Savages, and their second release was only available digitally, but both Hotpress and Joe.ie made it their track of the week after its release. During this time MYTH began to perfect their live show & this lead to a cult following amongst Dublin’s Alternative Rock scene.
This hype leads to MYTH selling out their headline shows in The Workman’s Club and Whelan’s, and performed a charismatic, intimate set in The Bello Bar, which The Sound Feed called “one of the best gigs of 2017”. Currently, MYTH is working on writing and recording new material with the head engineer of Grouse Lodge Michael Brady & are set to release new singles set for release in 2018.
Listen to Myth’s 99% Podcast Interview:
Steereo: Okay, welcome back to The 99% Podcast. We are here with Nick, an incredible band from Ireland, and I’m so excited because I think you guys are the first Irish band that I have interviewed and been Irish I’m biased. So, welcome to The 99% Podcast.
Steereo: I know what the music industry is like there, but tell me where you guys are from, and in your opinion what the music scene is doing there, right now. What you like about it, what you do not like about it?
So, we are a band from Dublin, and Dublin’s the capital city of Ireland. It’s about 1.5 million people, so it’s not the most prominent place in the world, but the music scene is a huge, huge part of Dublin City, and Ireland in general. So for us, it’s hard, actually, to kind of make a place for ourselves as a kind of alternative rock band. There’s a lot of Indie bands about; there are lots of songwriters … I don’t know; there’s even like pop-synth acts or the electronic acts. There’s a fairly big metal scene. So, music is a huge part of city life for us, but I don’t know, we found our little place I suppose, in a way. Somehow, yeah. There’s a lot of competition because that’s not actually that many venues as such for acts to play in, so it’s fierce competition, but … yeah.
We beat people.
Steereo: Yes. We’re victorious, always. Well, you’re going to be in the Academy soon.
Yes. That’s on November 3rd. Yeah, we’re looking forward to it. It’s like our first going with, selling our tickets through Ticketmaster. Usually, we handle all the promotion ourselves, but then this time we’re going with them, so it’s a massive change for us at the moment.
Steereo: It’s small wins like that. I remember the first time we started selling on Ticketmaster, it’s like, ‘Oh! I’ve made it!’ Little did I know. Little did I know at the time. So, okay perfect. So, for me, I understand that music industry over there, and it is super competitive, and there can be a little bit of cliqueyness, and you have to run with a certain crew, and all of that, so how do you navigate that regarding the industry? Do you guys have frustrations when it comes to your market?
I don’t know. I think because we keep a lot of what we do in-house, so any frustration we have it either with ourselves or with venues, I guess. There’s not like a whole pile of extreme hate for people, because the industry is what it is, so the fact that we are selling out venues consistently enough is has made it a little bit easier to get booked or be able to book places. So, I think anything … any frustration probably is maybe on our part for not giving it a little bit more. Yeah, it’s definitely like … I guess you’re right. There definitely are cliques in the Dublin and the Irish music scene, particularly Indie rock I think is calling it a clique is not necessarily saying it’s a negative thing, there’s always going to be clusters of different genres of music that are up and coming at certain periods in time, and I think in our end of the moment, it’s definitely Indie music, so for us as a more heavier rock group, with a violin and female vocals and hip hop sort of stuff happening, and metal coming into it as well, it’s really hard for us to find our little place particularly with those cliques being so popular. So for us to take the initiative to just run our gigs, like that was our way of out of the frustration of having to work our way and find our way through a scene that’s quite saturated with stuff that isn’t us. So that’s kind of how we managed that.
Steereo: Last night, I went to see Hosier, and the [crosstalk] he’s doing three sold-out shows here. I think that the Irish are adored pretty much everywhere around the world. Do you guys have plans to break out of Ireland?
Yeah, we have plans to. When we say plans, I think that at the moment, even when you’re looking at the UK, it’s tough going into a country like that and not really knowing the kind of bookers, because it’s all done through email, or sometimes Facebook, so when you’re contacting them and your not getting any response, they are more reluctant in their approach to giving you slots, either in venues, or like slots in venues like on a Tuesday night, that’s tough to get, and that’s easy to get over here. So I think it’s a lot tougher to go into the UK at the moment because their music scene is very as competitive as Dublin is at the moment. Yeah, and I think for me, I started my career in Ireland and I ended up in LA just over three years now, and I think in hindsight, I think parts of it is, it’s very comfortable at home, because you have the support, like when things get really, when you’re challenged and your frustrated or whatever, you have the support of your friends and your family, and you know the venues you want to pick, and you know what you’re aiming for in terms of vision. I think when you go to a different country, I think all bets are off because you’re out of your comfort zone straight away, and then for me, to Los Angeles, it was very much, honestly, top 20% of everything, whether that musician models creative. I think when you come to LA, no matter how big a fish you are in the pond over there, you go into the bottom 20% over here, and then you have to work your way up and establish yourself and establish an audience, or whatever. And from listening to your music, I genuinely think you have … you guys have the ability to do so because it’s quite unique what you guys are doing.
Thank you! Very big compliment!
Steereo: So, what I’m saying is get your shit together.
No pressure! No pressure!
Steereo: Okay, so let’s get the interview back on track. In terms of … we don’t actually interview a lot of bands. And people always ask me, are you a band or are you in a band? And I’m like, ‘No, I have enough to be dealing with myself, never mind three or four different people.’ How do you guys work that dynamic, keeping it professional, keeping it friendly? Do you have any advice to people who are starting bands, of things to do or things not to do?
You have to be honest with each other. Yeah, honesty, yeah. You have to know where each person’s at in their lives, the time, and be honest if what they’re playing is terrible, or if any ideas that they have aren’t good, or when things are really good, let people know that you like the sounds they’re making when you’re writing music, or on stage, if you have suggestions on what people can or can’t do.
But, it’s honesty … it’s a critical honesty. Not to be mean, to be positive and support each other. Yeah! And keep each other happy, you know?
Steereo: And where does ego play into it, and is there always a Beyonce of the band? Like is there … for me, I always look at it as some people make people the front person. Is that something that you guys do, or is it something that you collectively as a group, or you know, all stand to the front? How does that work in terms of even from an ego perspective, it’s a very interesting conversation.
I think we all want Alex to be the front. But I don’t think Alex is the type of person that. Wants to be the front. He wants to play behind the curtain. I’m the singer if that’s why they want me to be out in the front.
Yeah, I don’t know. You guys want me to be the front. Yeah, because I’m the singer, it makes sense to have the singer who’s talking to the audience and saying words that people can understand, it’s not just noted on the page, and if I did it as a drummer, it would be weird. Yeah! Strange if the drummer was out front. But, for me, I love performing and playing music, but I don’t necessarily love the talking to people. Like, ‘Oh! Thanks for coming!’ I find that really hard. That’s a huge challenge as a …
Steereo: I do not like talking to people, so …
On stage or off stage? I mean talking to the audience, you know? Like the actual speaking and trying to engage them aside from the music. I think that’s really challenging, well, for me, it’s quite challenging.
Steereo: Why do you think that is?
I ended up just going off on lots of tangents and telling lots of stories and then just wasting loads of time, after a while, you realize, oh, we have to play music now.
Steereo: And as an artist, what do you actually think that is? Do you think that comes down to a confidence thing, do you think it’s to do with because music is very personal. When you sing, you sing. It’s already in your head; you can hear the music, you can feel the music. But do you think that’s a confidence thing, Alex, in terms of when you stand up there, it’s confidence, or you get shy, what is that?
I think most performers plan … I think there’s a lot of planning must go into it, that’s what I’ve learned over time. Is that, I think you have to go on knowing what you’re going to say, and once you know what you’re going to say, you can build up the confidence and practice in speaking. We can practice singing and playing music and all those things in practice, in rehearsals all the time, but we don’t stand in the rehearsal room, and I’m going to go, ‘Okay, now it’s my time to talk, and this is what I’m going to say about this song.’ We don’t do that. No. It’s actually a huge aspect of the performance, so it’s probably a mixture of planning and preparation, but then yeah, confidence coming into it, too. Because I’m confident singing like I can sing all the time and never get worried about that, but when it comes to talking to the audience directly, that’s a challenge. So, yeah, probably a bit of planning and a bit of experience may be, psych yourself up a bit more.
Which is silly, because most people find the singing … some people find the singing is the hard bit, they can talk no problem. You know, it’s just a personal thing, I suppose. Experience wise.
Steereo: Well, I think there are two parts to it in terms of the way I kind of look at it is, there are so many different things in being an artist in this day and age. It’s not just about the music anymore. You know, the big elephant in the room is always the social media and your social numbers and their perception and the [inaudible] and all of that stuff around it, and I think you’re exactly right in terms of … I see artists who are very rehearsed in every aspect of their life, and I think because they present a perception of the world. And I think that’s what people like. They like that smoothness. But also, on the other hand, they like the vulnerability of when they see an artist whose nervous speaking to the audience because it resonates. That’s human nature. But I think the best artists in the world, you know, like when you’re watching someone like a Hosier last night, which, because I know his management team, I go to most of his shows when he’s in town, he’s so humble, but yet there is a crack. Like he has his jokes, and he tells the story about being from Ireland and all of that stuff, and I think that’s an element of preparation, but also you get to see who he is as a person as well.
He lets you in.
Steereo: Yeah, he’s very genuine, and I think even with his music, you can tell between his music on his … and his personality on stage, you can tell it’s just him. There’s no more to it. Like, he is Andrew Hosier Byrne on stage. Whereas I think the competition is that there’s a lot of artists like you said, everything’s rehearsed, and everything is planned and prepared, and their whole presence on social media is this image that they want to create. So, I think with people like Hosier; you can see that it is just him and he’s definitely someone to admire in that respect, that there’s no more to him than his personality shining through. He’s great. And yeah, really humble. Yeah, and again, and I think the key is to stay originally who you are, and then it’s been how big it actually becomes, because at different stages of your career, obviously when, if a label gets involved or there’s a big budget, or it’s a big budget tour, of course, things change, and it becomes slightly next level. Ultimately, you should never change.
Yeah. Absolutely. That’s very true. Very true.
Steereo: So, you guys are on, and obviously Steereo has been gained the new radio for Ride Share, so when people jump into an Uber or a Lyft here in America, and they hear your music for the first time, what is the intention? What are you trying to make the audience feel with your music?
I don’t know; I guess alive or angry? It’s like relax, like when you give someone an evil look on the bus but they can’t see you.
Steereo: Perfect! So, we’re trying to create anger in the world. I don’t know where that fits with my branding, but I’m sure it fits with your branding. Congratulations. So, for anyone out there who’s listening, whether it be your friends, or it’s on the Steereo side, you’re deciding to chase a dream or a music passion that they have, and they’re just at the beginning of their journeys, what advice would you guys give collectively or individually to the individuals?
Hang out as a band outside of practice. Yeah! Get as drunk and as humiliated as possible with however many is in the band. Break all those boundaries. Do not leave anything back, no. There is no hugging — no person’s, what the underneath of their foot looks like. And you should be okay because then you can say whatever you like to that person and they’ll know that it’s not. Personal. Yeah, it’s never a personal thing. It’s like with us, we can go into rehearsal rooms, and we can call each other all sorts of names, but that’s not creative, so I think when you break down the thought barrier, and you’re just honest with each other, you can really do anything with that person.
Steereo: Most amazing.
Hilarious. Most of our stuff, like, most of our songs start with almost a joke. Like, ‘Hey! There’s this really stupid riff I have.’ ‘Okay! Let’s make it into a song!’ Then we all , and like someone would come in and it’s just like, ‘I don’t really think this will work,’ and then they’ll play it and it’s just that atmosphere of not being afraid to make a mistake in front of people because you know they’re either going to say, ‘No,’ or they’ll like it. That’s true.
Steereo: Well, you know you guys just played into the biggest stereotype of the Irish, ’cause you talk about getting drunk, so I guess that’s all day, every day, and everyone’s like, ‘Do you just drink all day?’
Steereo: I’m like, ‘No, actually I don’t even drink most of the time.’ But I’m glad you guys are keeping the Irish dream alive. Guys, it’s been an absolute pleasure to talk to you guys today, just tell us a little about some of the new and exciting things coming up for you guys this year, and let the audiences know where they can find you in terms of Instagram handles, and websites and all of that stuff, and music.
So, at least in the near future, with our gig coming up in Dublin, and the Academy, too, on November 3rd, and we should have some more new music out by then. About maybe another video too. And then 2019, we’ll probably be maybe a little bit more focused on recording, and kind of a larger gig circuit, but that’s still being planned at the moment. As far as social media and stuff, like, it’s all under the same name, so it’s Myth Music Official, and that goes right through our Spotify, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. So, it’s all there.
Steereo: Awesome! Well, thank you guys for joining us on the 99% podcast today. You guys have been fun, we’re so excited, and I’m just excited I get to speak to Irish people. Thank you so much for taking the time, and I look forward to your mediatic rise and in America.
Watch “Maiden” Official Music Video by Myth