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Misfits Of Science - Misfits of Science Interview

26 Nov 2004 // An interview by Dilemma
Finding the connection between kiddie fiddlin’, drinking loads of red bull and scribe selling out could concoct a lot of misguided thoughts, or be a recipe for mischief making, number 1 single and a platinum selling album.
Muzic.net PRESENTS…. an interview with NZ’s newest MISFITS, OF SCIENCE that is.

I don’t have too many blonde moments being that I’m a brunette, but going into an interview unprepared could have been career suicide if the band were pretentious jerks, lucky for me meeting the misfits AKA Yudhi and Steve were relaxed kiwi guys, they answered all my questions politely but don’t let that fool you, finding out more about these guys it seems art does imitate life. They are straight up dudes who know what they want in life and music, but at the same time very serious about they way they want to achieve those goals and not compromise by making their music ‘safe’ and less of who they are.

Here is a transcript of the interview to find out more about 2 talented kiwi misfits.

When did you both meet and how?
SM: About 3 years ago I was working in retail and he came in, we started talking and yeah it all happened from there.

Where are you from?
Both: Auckland

Ohh Torture…
SM: yeah that’s why we like to travel, get out of Auckland to where we are appreciated. (Talking about places to play in) Tough crowd in Hamilton, they are worse then Auckland, they just stand there until you play a song they all know then they go back to standing there.

How are you feeling now that the album is out, and how is it doing?
YM: Its gone gold so yeah, I guess for us it’s a case of relief that we finally managed to finish it and get it out into the stores on time, now that the business end is all sorted out it’s a case of promoting it
SM: and getting more sales.
YM: I think its an album that’s going to grow on people, its not you hear the songs are your going to go rush out and buy it
SM: people will be interested but they may get a little scared of it.

Why will it scare people?
YM: there’s only one fools love kind of track on the record so yeah.

Did you read the review in the herald?
SM: Was that the 4 star one?

Yeah that one, it said that your album is a 15 track playful sugar rush with mischief on its mind, what do you think of that?
YM: That’s pretty well described; it is a sugar rush from start to finish. Yeah, if people are expecting a straight down the middle hip hop record that’s not what it is, you’ve gotta hear it, you’ve got one track then it cuts from here to there, its like crazy.

Obviously the album is going to have a lot of meaning to you though, did you mean for it to be more serious or is supposed to be playful?
YM: Yeah it is very serious in terms of the production and the lyrics and delivery and our flow. But in terms of the content of the record that’s all fun, that’s who we are, what you see on the artwork that relates to tracks on the album and like with lyrics and track titles.

What was it like hearing fools love on the radio for the first time?
SM: I cant recall that, I remember seeing it on T.V for the first time, and that was pretty good.
YM: I think what was cool, was when it was played on Holla for the first time and they played it at the start of the show and at the end of the show they were like we have had an amazing response to this video so here it is again, and we were like hey hey, sweet.
SM: yeah it was really noticeable and I don’t think that has ever happened with any other video and any artist on a video.

Speaking of the video, how much fun was it to make?
YM: It was our first ever video shoot, it was pretty normal, we had a green screen behind us and we didn’t have much room to move around, and they said what we are going to do is this, so we are standing in front of this screen singing and whatever and at the end of it when we saw it we were like hmmm ok.

Did you like it when you first saw it?
Both: Yeah we were pretty impressed

Do you have input in the videos.
SM: yeah it’s the same as with our music, with our videos we have massive input on the production.
YM: yeah we have a director who we trust a lot. He has good ideas.

Can you imagine making music without each other now?
YM: We both have the ability to make music, like there are tracks on the record that he did and that I did but we like working together too.
SM: Yeah I think at the end of the day we work quiet well together, we feed of each other quiet well, that’s why what we have on the album, the tracks on there are what we wanted.

What good stuff have you learnt from making an album and promoting it etc?
YM: I think we are a lot better now, we understand that game, its like in the beginning we were like what are we doing, how do we behave, but now we just be ourselves.

Ok I’ve got to ask, there is a song on the album called kiddie fiddlin’ what’s that about?
SM: well the songs about being a kid and getting up to mischief and doing stupid crap. A lot of it is references to kids and stuff we did when we were younger, the name – someone said it and we were like yeah it has pretty bad connotations but its not, we think it’s a good name cause when people see the name they will be like “oh my god and they will want to listen to it. Its one of our favourite tracks as well, and I think it will be for everyone else
YM: We wrote that track from the point of view of being little kids our selves, its not like us being 22 or 25 and trying to be little kids messing around you know.

What sort of things inspire you to write songs, is it like growing up, or heart break stuff like that?
YM: there’s no heart break on this record, you wont find any lovey dovey stuff, its very straight up, its quiet truthful, there’s a lot of subtlety in there you have to have half a brain to pick up
SM: but you don’t have to have half a brain to listen to it, if you have half a brain you can still by the album
YM: yeah of course.
SM: we don’t discriminate against half brained people. I mean like the track kiddie fiddling we wrote it from experiences that we’ve had and stuff like that. There’s nothing about hardships, cause we didn’t have extremely hard lives growing up so we’re not gonna make up some S**T like that.

How do you feel about the comparisons to American rap and hip-hop that?
We honestly don’t believe that we are anything like that, sure we dress like that but that’s how we like to dress, that’s how we have always been dressing even before this all happened, we like the clothes and the colours. I mean if you like the dickies hoodies go rock that but we don’t like that so we don’t dress that.
SM: its like people saying we dress punk cause we are trying to be English cause punk originated from England, or some dude dressing like a reggae guy, oh are you from Jamaica…I think comparisons like that are ignorant, oh I wannabe American cause I wear clothes from America.
The thing is it that most of the clothes are made in Vietnam
SM: yeah I know I wanna be from Vietnam
YM: Yeah I wanna be a sweatshop worker

So who in NZ music do you like, who inspires you?
YM: I like Bic Man

Bic Runga?
YM: yeah when I heard her stuff I was like this is good this is very good. To be honest not many people here excite me. That’s just me being straight up, most of my influence would be overseas. Artists like outkast, timberland, underground artists in the states that aren’t very well known, stuff like a tribe called quest. I mean like here bic would be the one who really grabbed me and I was like that stuff is really good.
SM: Umm, yeah I like bic, but when we played with Hayley Westernra I was pretty impressed, she can sing man like crazy. I know I thought she was a little whatever but when she started singing man I was like that’s talent,
YM: when you can go out and sing with a mic in your hand like you do in a studio that’s talent.

What are you looking forward to the most about the upcoming tour?
(Mischievous grins all round)
SM: Just touring and being able to go to different places and playing in front of lots of people. And the free bar tabs.

What’s the best gig you have played so far?
SM: Buster
YM: Yeah the most exciting this is going out there knowing your opening for buster [Rhymes] and being the act just before buster, cause you know that they are watching.
Did you know how many people were in the crowd?
YM yeah we knew there would be at least a 1000 so the response was good. Buster has been a big influence for us so it was just like an honour you know, like a privilege.

What’s the best gig you have been to?
SM: Busta rocked, it was just him and he didn’t need a big band or dancers and they just killed it.
YM: That impressed us and gave us some ideas for what we want to do on our tour.

How do you keep in contact with your fans?
SM: Yeah he was crazy enough to give out our email address to some crazy 14 year old.
Conversation strays into why that will never happen again
SM: Yeah we would be the most personable, you will always see us in the street or in bars and we will talk to you unless you’re haters or whatever.

Have you had any strange encounters with fans while touring?
YM: Hell yeah, at the edge jam in the park kept hanging around, and one was only about 8 and that started getting uncomfortable/ Guys though they are the worse they are keep hanging around and acting like your best mate.
SM: there was this guy in Christchurch who came up to us asking to join us and hung around for half an hour talking like we were best mates and he knows us. We are not mean or anything we will talk to people and sign autographs and have pictures and stuff, but after a while if your just hanging around it gets annoying.
YM: I'm pretty straight up most of the time, like after a gig, I'm sweaty and if fans start getting too much I till them you know this is my special time after a concert, it only gets annoying when they act like your best mate and they are jabbering for half an hour, and I'm like sorry you don’t know me so please don’t hang around here for half an hour while I'm trying to have my time.
SM: its like when your out and someone comes up to you who you don’t know and tries to hang out with you for half an hour, but its cool it you want an autography and a picture and then you move on.

So how does a fan get on your good side? Flowers and chocolate.
SM: A bar tab. But we are both taken so only kisses on the cheek.

What do you think of scribe?
YM: man we always get this question. You know what I'm going to be honest, he doesn’t do wonders for me, he’s straight down the middle and we aren’t.

Any plans on getting back hayley westernra?
SM: She just signed a million dollar contract not sure if she will come back.

So what have you got coming up and in the future?
YM: We have got the big day out coming up in Jan and hopefully we are going to get onto the Australian circuit as well.

Are you going to do a Brooke Fraser and move over there and not come back until you retire?
YM: Oh nuh
SM: man yeah and hayley is in England and bic lives in Paris.
YM: nuh I’m quiet comfortable here right now.
SM: You are then I’m moving somewhere?

Huh you guys are braking up is that an exclusive??? Laughter
YM: oh nuh, we have a lot of years left here in NZ and after we promote ourselves heavily here and in Australia and wherever else we can we will still be working with other artists and other records and they want us to produce so that’s what we will be doing. And then we will work on our second album.

So your going to work with other artists on your label?
YM: Yeah we want to cement ourselves not only as M.C’s but as producers and stuff, like we produced every track on this record and they were mixed and mastered by Simon Holloway.

Is there anything that NZ music could do better, like to help out artists such as yourselves, when you were starting and such?
YM: nuh I think NZ on air, they had a big hand in getting us out there, cause we sent in fools love for funding and then we met up with Simon Holloway and from there the ball kept rolling, and it was because of that funding that everything started happening and record companies started noticing. So NZ on Air are the shit.

He does a lot of pop, did you teach him anything?
YM: yeah we did show him a few things in terms of the layout of the record, because it is a lot different to a pop album. But he is very talented he knows his s**t, but we trusted him and yeah we feel we have a good product.

Favourite track on the album?
SM: Kiddie fiddln, the more and more I listen to the album, its like an album that grows and every track becomes enjoyable. Its an album that you are going to have to listen to more than once, like if you listen to it in the stores, you will skip through the little bits on the tracks and little skits and stuff and that’s where the funny moments are.

Favourite cd’s Right now.
SM: It may sound conceited but our cd, its one of my favourite records right now.
YM: Mos Def stuff like that.

If you were at the end of your career in music, but you could do anything else what would you want to do, go back into retail maybe?
SM: no way.
YM: By the time I’m 35 I want to be on an island, buy a house on an island.
SM: I just want to be retired.
YM: I say something and ill do it, I said id get here and now I’m here, and at 35 I’m going to be on an island. Nuh I’d like to have my own label one day and hunt down the next big artist and make some money off them.

That brings me to a good question, what did you spend your first pay check on?
YM: yeah I just got mine today, but he has to wait another week to get his cause someone didn’t put in their bank account details. He’s still got 17 bucks in his account.

So what are you spending it on?
SM: what the 17 bucks? I’ve got a couple of fines to pay off, warrants and regos when I get mine.

Do you still have jobs?
YM: yeah I still have a job doing web design.
SM: Nuh I don’t have one.

How do you not get on each others nerves, any bad habits etc?
YM: we fight every day
SM: Yeah we have the ability to forgive each other really quick, we don’t hold grudges, you girls are really bad for that man, girls can hold a grudge.

One place in the world you want to do a good.
YM: Summer jam in the states
SM: Do you know how hard it is to please a crowd that big, they booed 50cent off stage, do you know how heart breaking that would be.
YM; Just in terms of the size of the crowd and stuff, it would be good to play somewhere big and pack out a stadium.
SM: we like travelling, Spain Brazil they would be good.

Inspirational words to up and comers?
YM: just don’t worry about what anyone else says, if you know your stuff and you know you can take it to the world then don’t be held down by anyone. Cause there will always be people that hate you but there will be more that love you. Be ambitious and you will get far.

Anything you want the fans to know?
YM: nuh just go out and buy the album. I think it’s an album that has been needed in NZ, everything else is too safe, and it stretches the boundaries.

Do you think that may work against you that people maybe too scared of it?
SM: mmm No, but we didn’t make this album just for NZ, we made it for ourselves and overseas has a bigger market. He they are not used to it.

What’s the next single to be released?

YM: the next one looks likely to be La Musica. (Picked up on the fact kiddie fiddling maybe the 4th release from the boys).
SM: We may have to change the name of kiddie fiddlin, don’t know what we will change it to.
SM: We have to wait for the next video to get done and that should be in about a week, it’s pretty crazy the censors will be chomping at the bit, pretty risky.

So it will be a good one
SM: yeah they are all good ones

Be sure to expect a lot of good ones to come in the future from these two talented misfits.

About Misfits Of Science

The Misfits of Science released the video for their debut single 'Fools Love' in 2004, without really knowing how the NZ public was going to react. Scan forward a couple months, and it's the #1 song in NZ, clocking up 4 weeks at the top of the charts, 4 months in the Top 10 and platinum + sales.

The accompanying video swiftly picked up gongs at the Juice TV Awards, the Bnet Awards and the Kodak Clip Zwards and was nominated for Video Of The Year at the 2004 NZ Music Awards. To feed ever increasing public demand the band also released a second clip for the 'Fools Love Ragga Remix'.

So finally it’s time for their debut album. 'MOS Presents' was recorded at Beaver Studios and produced, mixed and mastered by Simon Holloway. Featured appearances include Tuff Enchant (who also guested on the 'Fools Love Ragga Remix') on 'La Musica', AL (of Breakin Wreckwordz) on 'Three Days Of The Blender' and Chong Nee (of Dei Hamo) on 'Hater Nation'.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Misfits Of Science


MOS Presents...
Year: 2004
Type: Album

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