Alter The Press!


Interview: McTwist

Recently Rockville, MD four-piece McTwist released their debut album 'Amateur Hour' and is influenced by the bands love of music, performing, road trips, sports and video games.

Alter The Press! recently spoke to Sam Lipson (vocals/guitar), Chris Grant (guitar/vocals), Kurt Haber (drums) and Mike Hoy (bass) to talk about their new album, their beginnings, influences and more.

ATP: Now either your band name comes from an obsession with skateboarding, or you spent a lot of time playing Tony Hawks' which is it?
Sam: It definitely comes from a lot of time playing Tony Hawk, especially around the founding of the band. Mike and I played it all the time, and we though it was a cool name. It eventually stuck.

ATP: I see that you have been together for just over two years, what do you consider to be your biggest achievements and highlights during that time?
Sam: Putting together our first multi-state tour was definitely a huge highlight for us. The road is way more fun than I think any of us ever imagined, and that first time out was really cool. I think for me personally the writing of our first full album was the biggest achievement because it's sort of a songwriting milestone. I also think we did really well with it, I still listen to it and am still really proud of it even after it's been out for a year.

ATP: Where do you see this band in 10 years time?
Mike: In ten years I hope we're still playing and traveling the country, hopefully with a little more ease and comfort.

Kurt: In ten years I hope we've become "McTwist: Live at the Mormon Temple" and we perform on top of the Mormon Temple in Washington, D.C.

Sam: Yeah, that could be our Beatles rooftop moment.

ATP: Where do you draw your creative and musical influences from?
Sam: I think it's all over the place for all of us...For me I definitely draw influence from bands like Green Day, Blink 182, etc. But also from guitarists like Bo Diddley, Pete Townshend, and Andy Summers.

Chris: Everything from my 1st grade piano sheet music to Kool and the Gang influences me the way I play.

Kurt: I'm not sure I have a particular style I play like, but maybe Chad Smith and Chad Sexton? I like Chads.

Mike: Third Eye Blind, Less Than Jake, Lucky Boys Confusion, SR-71.

ATP: If you could make a superband made up from artists dead or alive who would be in it?!
Chris: On drums I'd have Phil Collins, Garth Algar (Wayne's World), and the Animal from the Muppets all playing at once. On bass Sting or Mike Hoy, guitars would be Robert Cray and Chris Cheney (The Living End). Then on vocals Otis Redding, Seal, and Nelly singing 3-part harmonies

ATP: What UK bands do you like?
Sam: British Invasion rock was obviously amazing, so The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Who, bands like that. I'm also a big fan of The Police, Oasis, The Libertines, The Clash. Tons of great music comes out of the UK so it's hard to narrow down the list.

Kurt: Fiction Plane, Radiohead, and Led Zeppelin too.

Mike: I'm a big fan of The Streets and Phil Collins.

ATP: What can people expect from a McTwist live show?
Chris: People can expect great music MOST of the time, but they can expect to have a killer time ALL of the time.

ATP: Do you have any big plans for 2010?
Sam: In 2010 we'd definitely like to finish up our second album (which we're in the process of writing right now), and get that released. We're also going on a short tour in late December (2009) and early January, so we're excited for that. Other than that, just playing as much as possible and continuing to grow.

Chris: I don't know what the band has planned, but I'm going to sharpen up my Putt-Putt golf game, release a hip-hop album, and finally beat Sonic the Hedgehog for Genesis.

Where can we buy your album?
Sam: The album, Amateur Hour, is available on iTunes, Amazon, CD Baby, Rhapsody, Napster...all over the place. And of course you can pick up hard copies at shows!

ATP: Why should the ATP readers listen to you?
Sam: I never know how to answer that. I hope they check us out and come up with a reason for themselves... I think it should be different for everybody.

'Amateur Hour' by McTwist is available now.

McTwist on MySpace.

Alter The Press!