One of Denver's home town favorites, Meese is quickly making a name for themselves. They are on the verge of dropping their sophomore album "Broadcast" amazingly soon and have been lucky enough to share the stage with bands like Our Lady Peace, Phantom Planet, and Paramore among others including their personal friends in The Fray. The Fray being their fellow hometown comrades and even occasional ping pong opponents, "my brother and Joe King love playing ping pong against each other and it's fun to watch", says Nathaniel Meese about his brother and partner in crime, Patrick. Along with the two brothers, the band is comprised of Ben Haley and Mike Ayars.
The band is definitely a force to be reckoned with and have the musical talent and education to back up their pop rock melodic tracks that have indie hipster music nerd kids loving their music to boy band lovers. The guys are groomed for stardom, and hopefully it will be coming to them very soon and it will be very well deserved and worked hard for.
A while back, Nathan opened me up to his world of music nerdiness that matched mine. I'm the kind of girl who when giving music suggestions can go on for about ten minutes of her "all time favorites". He talked about the possibly surprising acts they would want to go on tour with to bands he thinks deserve a little more love. And all put together with some great parting words.
If you could tour with any three bands, who would they be and why?
1. The Killers
2. The Fray
3. Barack Obama
The Killers because they're an incredible live band who I think we share a similar sound with. We could learn a lot from them and also I think they've sold a couple of tickets on their last tour.
The Fray because their loyal fan base is made up of real music fans that actually listen to opening bands. I've learned that from experience and we are actually lucky enough to get to tour with them again this July. Plus my brother and Joe King love playing ping pong against each other and it's fun to watch.
And last but not least Barack Obama because a crowd and a ton of press usually gathers wherever he goes so I think it'd be pretty good exposure for our band.
Who are your major inspirations?
There are obviously a ton of bands that inspire the 4 of us and that becomes pretty apparent after listening to our new album 'broadcast'. Some songs on the new record are inspired by bands like bloc party and the Maccabees. Real angular and pumping guitar rock. Others are more ballady ala bends-era radiohead or early coldplay. Others are harder to put a finger on and I like to think that they just simply sound like 'Meese'. But ultimately the two bands that the 4 of us all agree on are radiohead and phoenix.
What was the first album you bought and the first concert you went to?
The first album I bought was 'august & everything after' by the counting crows. I still have it and listen to it regularly. What a great album. Timeless. Every time I listen to 'round here' I feel like I'm 9 years old again.
I'm lucky enough to have artistic parents who took my brother and I's musical upbringing seriously and they knew it was important to get us out to shows at an early stage- SO they took us to see my Dads favorite band The Allman Bros when I was in middle school. It was in Cleveland at the nautica stage down in the flats before the whole city gave up on itself. Regardless of where it was, it was incredible and changed my life.
How do you go about the song writing process? Is there something about it that may make you a bit different from other acts today?
My brother patrick writes 95% of everything we play. I usually swoop in at the end of the process and write a part or do all the guitar stuff or help with a lyric or 2. There were a couple of tunes for 'broadcast' that we wrote as a band and they turned out amazing and I think we'll ultimately end up doing a lot more of that for the next record, but patrick is definitely the songwriter of Meese.
What makes us a bit different than a lot of rocks bands these days as far as writing goes is actually how we demo out songs and write. All four of us use some type of electronic music program to get ideas down- like Reason or Garage Band- something like that. Then we just email ideas to each other and work off of that. It's like the Postal Service model for writing only we all live in Denver. I think that there's this sort of stigma attached to rock bands that we all get together with a case of beer and a pizza and go jam until something sounds good and the truth of the matter is that for our band it just doesn't work that way. We all have other outlets for jammy more traditional ways of writing and performing and Meese just sort of turned into an electronic project that we all play real instruments on. It's worked so far and is definitely the right system for the 4 of us.
What, in your opinion, is one of the top albums of 2009 thus far?
Definitely 'Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix' by Phoenix. That's my
Album of the year already. That band is so incredible.
What inspired you guys to start making music together (besides the whole two of you being brothers thing)?
Patrick and I have been music fans and writers our whole lives and we've been in bands together since I was 10 years old. It finally got to a point where we realized that we could write and put together a band better than some bands that were having a lot of success. And the inspiration is just for the ride. This is the most ridiculous, crazy, scary, incredible, lonely, funny, complex, and unusual job that I could picture doing. So what better way to spend my young years!
Is there any artist of several that you know who may be deserving of a little more light and attention?
Phoenix who I mentioned before. Their last two records are just perfect. They sound like Daft Punk mixed with the strokes.
The French Kicks never get any love and have put out amazing album after amazing album since I was in high school. Go buy all their albums it's worth it.
There's a band called Kent from Norway (I think) that have put out in-freaking-credible CDs. Namely 'hagnesta hill'. The songs 'protection" and 'kevlar soul' just totally wail and deserve your immediate attention.
Margot And The Nuclear So & So's are another amazing band that I never hear people talking about. They have two heartbreaking good albums that I listen to every time it's my turn to drive the van.
Plus there's a bunch of great Denver bands that everyone should find out about now so you can have bragging rights in the future:
Born in the Flood
I could go on for days I'm a total music nerd I'll just stop there.
What's your favorite treat?
Kid A with headphones on
Any last words?
Time flies like the wind. Fruit flies like bananas.
You can find more of their music on their myspace and look out for the new album "Broadcast" hitting your local record store's shelves soon!