The Glitch Mob take on Dia de los Muertos in NYC

Notorious for their high-energy live performance, The Glitch Mob are ready to set NYC on fire tomorrow (November 1) for their Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) show at Hammerstein Ballroom. Boreta (Justin Boreta), Ooah (Josh Mayer) and edIT (Edward Ma) have been on the 2014 Fall Love Immortality Tour for most of 2014, which will finish Sunday (November 2) in Washington, DC but plan to head out again in 2015. So, if you missed them this time around, you may get another chance next year.

We got a chance to speak with Boreta about their demanding tour schedule and how dedicated fans of the band show their support for the guys.

How’s the tour going?

It’s going really well. We’re in Providence right now. We just had a couple days off in Montreal, and yeah, it’s going really, really well. It’s the last week of the tour, so we’re excited.

What’s been your favorite city to play live so far?

It’s hard to say. There’s been so many great shows this tour. We just have this amazing group of musicians with us who are the opening bands we’ve become really good friends with. And yeah, it’s been a culmination of so much work that we really couldn’t pick a favorite spot.

Who are the opening bands?

There’s a band called Chrome Sparks. There’s a band/DJ called The M Machine who are on tour with us. Chrome Sparks is from Brooklyn, actually.

How did they land the opening spots?

Well, actually, we posted to our fans. We had been fans of their music. Not really friends with them but just known of their music for a long time. So, we posted to our fans, “Hey, who would you want to come and open?” And Sparks and M Machine were overwhelmingly chosen, so we listened to them and agreed.

Do you guys have anything special planned for your show on Saturday in New York?

Oh yeah. We’ve got some special stuff we’re working on. It’s all top secret. It’s going to be fun Day of the Dead and Halloween stuff. It’ll be a special show. New York’s a special place for us. It’s one of our favorite places to play, so we’re going to go all out.

How does the L.A. scene influence your sound?

It’s hard to say. Right now, we’re really not too part of the scene. We’re kind of off in our own little world. But we definitely come from there, and it’s in our DNA. Los Angeles is so big geographically, I think people don’t realize that it’s really many different cities mashed into one.

When we first started collaborating together as The Glitch Mob, we used to play this event called Low End Theory in L.A., which is famous kind of underground, experimental hip-hop, and we were playing stuff like that. And we were playing underground, early dubstep parties, bass music – really heavy bass music – parties around 2007 and 2008. So, we would go and play a hip-hop party and then maybe a dubstep party, and then maybe we’d go play at a nightclub because there’s so many different things going on. There really isn’t any particular genre we’re attached to.

Who or what would you name as influences? Is there a type of sound you strive to achieve?

We definitely don’t have anything like that. We’re kind of oddballs of electronic music in that we’re off in a corner doing our own thing. We don’t really do that on purpose, but when we’re in the studio working – that’s just a byproduct of the way that we write music. It’s not really an intentional thing.

So you just kind bounce off each other really….

Yeah, we just bounce off each other, and we focus on the story of the song. When we write music, we talk about certain emotions like, “Okay, this song is going to be about triumph” or “This song is going to be about forgiveness.” Stuff like that. That’s what we base the songs on. And also, we have very different backgrounds in music, which helps a lot. I really like Nine Inch Nails and Josh really likes Outkast and Ed really grew up listening to East Coast – he’s from Boston – East Coast hip-hop. So all of us together don’t really have one particular thing we like too much.


Love Death Immortality dropped earlier this year. How does this album differ from 2010’s Drink the Sea?

This album was really meant to take what we had done with Drink the Sea and tell a similar story but wrap it in a way that allows it to be performed on a live stage. Because Drink the Sea seemed like more of a headphone-listening album, and we wanted to take it to the next step and still have music that has emotion and a cinematic nature at the core. We really wanted to go out and build this crazy element into our tour and have the album be more of an extroverted than an introverted record.

Where did The Glitch Mob logo come from?

It’s funny. When we came to the guy who designed the Drink the Sea album cover, we didn’t design a logo first. This guy’s name is Sonny Kay. His whole thing is he makes this crazy collage psychedelic stuff. He used to do stuff for Mars Volta, which we’re big fans of, and when he sent us that, it was just one of the things that he had chosen. He was basically sending us comps for album ideas, and we saw that and were like, “Oh my God. That’s it.” We knew right away. And at that time, that was just the album cover. But slowly people started actually like – we never really put it out there – but people actually started getting tattoos of our album cover. So, we were like “Okay, this logo just kind of chose us.”

And then later in time, we went and found out – someone explained to us, a digital researcher – as far as what it actually means. But at the time, it just felt visually, it made sense to us because there’s an element of a triangle in there, and there’s three of us. Three is a big thing in everything we do in the sense of higher level stuff. Three is an important number, so it really just kind of came to us.

Why do you think fans relate to the lyric and/or song title, “Starve the Ego/Feed the Soul” so well?

So, that was something that was a tribute to a friend of ours that passed away. He used that. So, it was kind of his way of living on through the music. We try to not actually put that out there too much because it’s such a powerful statement that really resonated with us. And we definitely didn’t come up with it. But I think in some way, the reason why people connect with it so much is that it kind of hits on this humility that music has this ability to level everything. That when you’re in the room and you’re listening to music, or you’re with headphones walking around, or whatever it is, and you have that moment when music takes you to a different place, and it connects everybody together. That’s what it seems like. People really connect with that phrase more than anything else we’ve done, actually.

Are you guys working on any solo projects?

Not a whole right now. Josh had a side project called PANTyRAiD. They just released their remix today actually – a couple hours ago – for Bassnectar. He did that in between touring. But everything’s been so busy with Glitch Mob, we haven’t really had time to do too much other solo work.

What are your plans for 2015?

We’re going to be writing some new music, and we’re actually going to be touring for most of 2015, so we’re still kind of working on those plans right now. But we are going to be still on and crankin’.

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