Colourflies, Colourflies, Colourflies
(Brief intro by Nicole Sergent, questions by Thomas Joseph)
A few years ago I stumbled upon musician Matthew Legard online on a meme page, of all places. We got to learn about his band the Colourflies here. We are back with a follow up interview and more on the group, which will we be sharing throughout the week. We also have an exclusive to share with the BSL audience! Stay tuned for more on this up and coming band.
(All images courtesy of the band)
- (For Matt) Elephant in the room, you’ve worn a dress on stage and in videos before. Given your claimed influences and the band’s overall sound, is this strictly a Kurt Cobain tribute? Comment on gender fluidity? Something else?
Matt: Ahhhhhh me wearing a dress, I would like to point out that we all wore dresses and that my dress totally matched my eyes. Wearing a dress, at least for me, is the pure freedom of wearing a dress. Am I bit more feminine than most guys? yes, but I also feel insanely comfortable. Who's Kurt Cobain?
Devin: Thank you for noticing my beautiful atitire. I mostly do it to look good, but it's also a cultural statement, which is ridiculously made through the ideas and emotion evoked in the... oh, that one was just for Matt, got it.
- There’s a serious DIY aesthetic to most of your work. Are the jump cuts and lo-fi images in your videos intentional? Budget driven? An artistic choice?
Matt: The low fi images in our videos are a combination of shitty video directors who don't have us in the room while editing and artistic choice. We're big Tim and Eric Fans
Mayde: I feel like we still follow the same general aesthetic that we did in highschool as garage band so idk if it's all that intentionally lo-fi, it just is what it is.
Devin: All of the above
- Y’all welcomed back Mayde Smith this spring. How’s that relationship worked out? What other lineup changes have y’all endured? - (For Mayde) How have you enjoyed coming back into the band? What did you pursue in the meantime?
Matt: Having Mayde back in the band is like welcoming your sister back into your life, only you're on the road with her and years have passed and you still feel the same, only you're playing for hundreds of people in a town you've never played in, opening for a national act. we're still our goofy, moody, selves and it's all the same as it ever was.
Mayde: I wasn't there so I wouldn't really know but it's "worked out" fine.
Devin: It's great to have the original Trio again.
Matt: As far as lineup changes? too many drummers to count, plus one bassist.
Mayde: In the meantime I lived at a barter faire, Seattle, and Eugene and then wound up back here and got married
- What’s the deal with the letter ‘u’?
Matt: The deal with the letter U is , I was trying to emulate the Beatles and their Englishness. Also my Grandma is British and I did it as a tribute to her. Love You Grandma!
Devin: I recall having a conversation with Matt about how the spelling of a word can dictate the way you perceive its pronunciation without actually changing the way it is pronounced. Which led him to suggest adding a U to the name.
- You’re based in Spokane with Idaho roots. Your record label is near the border. This isn’t a scene that gets a ton of national press. What’s one thing a reader in, say, Texas, should know about the scene in your neck of the woods?
Matt: The scene in our neck of the woods is a bunch of metal, the bad kind. A lot of PBR, leather and denim jacket rock, which is akin to Bruce Springsteen, but it's from a garage. To clarify, we are not part of the cool kids club and it makes us cry
Devin: There's a reason we don't get a lot of national press in our area.... the popular bands are terrible. Ironically, there are lots of less well known bands that are terrific, so take from that what you will
Mayde: the scene in the area isn't as good as Seattle, for sure. And drama between bands and members becomes public a lot more easily so it's usually pretty easy to tell why a band broke up or why someone left because everyone in this area is all about sharing their dirty laundry online. There's a general unfriendliness towards the alternative in the town where we met and formed the band and went to school. One story from 2011 in particular never gets old, Devin and Matt and I were walking down road and some dudes in a truck leaned out and shouted "n***er dyke f*ggot" at us as quickly as they could manage. Assuming it was one for each of us. You don't have to publish that but it's certainly relevant to our experience growing up in the area.
- How is working with Blackhouse Records?
Matt: Working with Blackhouse is like a dream come true. We have complete creative control, our label owner came with us on the we just got off opening for Green Jello. We were Bill Manspeaker's backing band with our label owner, Scott on drums. He's like another Dad of mine. We had an issue with a sexist venue and we went to the label and they said what are we gonna do about this? That's a fucking good label. Also it's because of them that our record sold internationally in 8 Countries, and a lot of copies.
Mayde: Working with Blackhouse has been really confidence boosting for me, in the sense of leaving the band and coming back to it being a more a professional operation and having a more structured system for everything. It has also created more opportunity for us and Scott is incredibly supportive.
Devin: Blackhouse has been everything we could ever want for a label and more. We have a evolved a perfect symbiotic relationship over thousands of days, which has fascinated many musicologists. Naturally, I'll hold off on the details so as to not bias any scientific literature that has yet to be released on the matter.
- You’ve cited a host of other 80s and 90s alt-rock bands as influences, especially from the Pacific Northwest. Do y’all see your work as an opportunity to evolve that sound? Pay homage to it?
Matt: I see our work as an opportunity to do everything. I love the Beatles and Cheap Trick as much as I love Alliyah and Prince and Hendrix. Our goal is to mash so many influences that our music becomes unrecognizable to even us. Prepare for a surprise on the new record.
Mayde: If our inspirations have any bearing on how we sound in the future that would be awesome, and I guess technically we're a band from the Pacific North West, so yeah I suppose we're working to evolve what people consider that genre to be, just by having the variety of influences and reintroducing some of the sounds or styles that might have become somewhat obscure to the generation in highschool right now. And if that brings younger kids to find the bands we love by highlighting our musical influences, that's awesome and more important to me than them liking our band.
Devin: Honestly, my biggest musical influences are from the 60's and 70's, bands like the Doors, Pink Floyd, Or Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, The Who, Etc. However, at no point in my writing do I try to emulate any particular genre's sound; I just do what feels right.
- (For Matt) I dug the Drowning in Guitars interview you did a while back. One thing you spotlighted was the “spacey vibe” on “Pepper.” What other tracks do you feel exemplify your ability to use petals and other equipment?
Matt: I'm equipment obsessed! You can ask Mayde or Devin. I've become more and more gear heavy as the years have gone on, which I owe to my guitar dad, Sean Greeneaux. Gush is a good example of the directions we're going in with effects. I used a 70's Morely flanger which is actually on my board now for live spacey stuff in a couple of new songs, "Starry-Eyed" and "Crank" . I used it for the Hendrixy tones in the pre chorus's and the solo bit at the end. The guitar on that was just a gorgeous Fender that I don't take out often, but I'm thinking of bringing out on the road because It sounds amazing. I've been using that for the clean tones on all the new album demos for the last week. I'm using a lot more effects live though, like a toy raygun that I just jam up against the pickups for our song Pucket (Fist Record) and other fun live tour crazies. And an Octive fuzz clone for solos that sounds exactly like Thin Lizzy. I would say that Been There Seen It, our last record, is actually pretty free of effects. The next one will be much more effects heavy and a real guitar record. I've collecting all sorts of gear over the last two years. Pedals, Amps, Heads. My standby is rig is my 70's Yamaha bass head, Mayde has the same, and a 60's Marshall cab, Which I've had for years and literally do everything with. That cab has been through some shit, me standing on it, falling down stairs, different states. It has Celestion G12-65's in it, or maybe it's the G12-80's. Hayley Fink From the Finns gave it to me when I traded her Japanese guitar live 5 or 6 years ago.