Just two brothers doing their thing….you know, making music and touring the world- that’s all! There is no other way to describe this band other than genius. The sound is instrumental and there’s something about the way they specifically do it that gives me a very inspiring feeling. After you read this interview run and go listen to their song Ghost Clock and then after that listen to Narita. You will not be dissappointed. PrettyRiot had the chance to interview Mike Bell of Lymbyc Systym. Here’s what he had to say…..
It is always interesting to watch siblings create music together. In what ways do you think being brothers has helped your music? What are the disadvantages?
Its definitely an intense situation to be in band with just your sibling, but we’ve been able to make it work really well over the last 6 years or so as a touring band. Musically being brothers, sharing not only musical interests but also sharing actual bloodlines, has made it easy to compose together. We tend to love alot of the same music and come from a very similar place musically. That being said, its the subtle differences in our taste that help to make our music somewhat original. For instance i might come at a melody Jared wrote and hear it as some downtempo idea, when in his mind it was perfectly set up to be an up tempo, Squarepusher esque idea.
I would say the main disadvantage to being brothers in a band is that things can get tense at times, just as is with any siblings in any situation. Its just kinda that much more intense when you’re living out of a van for months and not making much money.
Has Lymbyc Systym always been an instrumental band? Do you think you will ever add vocals?
We have always been an instrumental band, but as we say with every record…we’re hoping to incorporate some vocals on this next one.
When writing new music where does your inspiration come from? And do you have a set method when creating?
We have a bunch of different ways of composing. Sometimes i will start a beat, either electronic or acoustic or maybe both, and then hand that off to Jared to start composing melodies to it. Other times, Jared will present me with a melodic idea or group of melodic ideas and i will set about creating percussion or textural parts to go along with it. Other times, we get together and write as a team, assisting eachother in the creation of our parts.
You guys have toured a lot, you are even going to Asia this summer! What is your favorite thing about touring and what is one item you cannot leave home without?
My absolute favorite thing about touring other than the obvious getting to play music every night, is the travelling and meeting folks all around the world. I once thought it amazing that i had established a network of friends and aquaintences around the US, but that eventually led to establishing a global network. It is a rare and special thing to have friends all around the world, from mexico city to tokyo.
Also I have been keen on trying to at least learn simple elements of the language wherever i go. It’s always that much easier to learn and to soak up the local culture as well when you spend night after night getting drunk as hell with foreingers of your same age and into all the same things. It truly does transcend any kind of differences between cultures. In essence, all us musicians around the globe all kind of do the same shit. It can make it really comforting to be in some wierd place like rural chezck republic or a festival in Argentina and go through your same drive, soundcheck, eat, play, hang out ritual.
One thing I cannot leave home for tour without is 2 pairs of shoes. I’m not really OCD or anything, but I ALWAYS make sure to bring 2 pairs of shoes on the road just in case.
Who are you looking forward to watching perform at Summerfest 2010?
I’m looking forward to watching Flaming Lips, Municipal Waste and Medeski Martin and Wood.
See Lymbyc Systym perform live at Summerfest