22 Feb 2015

Nine Questions with the Myrrors

Nine Questions is a new regular feature on the Active Listener, where we ask our favourite artists nine simple questions and get all sorts of answers....

Today.... Nik Rayne from the Myrrors.

What was the first record you bought? 
Not sure if this counts, but I think it was the first Led Zeppelin album, without the record inside. This was before I even had a turntable, I just wanted the sleeve for my wall. Still waiting to find its missing half, though I'm pretty sure I dug that album a lot more back then than I do now...

What was the last record you bought? 
It's gonna have to be a three way tie: Art Ensemble of Chicago's "Reese and the Smooth Ones," Ravi Shankar's "Portrait of A Genius," and Cecil Taylor's "Great Concert of Cecil Taylor" (beautiful three-LP set featuring the mighty Sam Rivers), all from the Double Nickels Collective this last weekend when we went up to Phoenix to play a gig with Destruction Unit. Always score at that place.

What's one thing about you that very few people know? 
I guess "very few people" is relative, but maybe that my dad is from Kabul, Afghanistan. Him and his family moved over to the States during the Russian war. He can still speak a good amount of Farsi, though unfortunately I was never taught.

If you could record with any one artist who would it be and why? 
That's a hard one. Assuming they would still have to be alive, maybe Tony Conrad - I could definitely get down with some heavy all-night violin drone action. Conrad's music was definitely a big influence on the new Myrrors record too, especially that first record he did with Faust, "Outside the Dream Syndicate."

Who should we be listening to right now? 
Sunn Trio from Phoenix, a radical young cosmic/space-jazz ensemble with hints of Bitches Brew-era Miles, classic era Ornette, and Can. Also Scattered Purgatory from Taiwan, who are making some of the most beautiful and creative drone-based music I've ever heard.

Vinyl, CD or digital? 
Always vinyl, but let's not forget the cassette!

Tell us about your latest release. 
Well our second "proper" studio full-length is coming out this March on Beyond Beyond Is Beyond Records. It's called "Arena Negra" and we're really excited about it, because the last time we really released a record like this is was way back in 2008! A lot has changed since then, as you can probably imagine - things have gotten a little heavier, a little more widescreen, and way further out. We workshopped a lot of ideas between the reformation of the band in 2013 and the final recording of the album, and I think that really helped us zero in on where we wanted to take The Myrrors as a band.

What's next for you, musically?
The lineup of the band has undergone something of a shake-up these last few months, but we've been playing out a lot around Tucson and I think, as a unit, things are sounding better than ever. We're already starting to brainstorm the follow-up to "Arena Negra" - I'm thinking it'll probably start out based in that record's general aesthetic, but we're definitely looking to explore some more distant sonic territories. We've even thrown around the (maybe overly ambitious) idea of making it a double LP. Might not be able to get much work done on that though till mid-late Summer, as we've got Austin Psych Fest this May followed by some in-the-works tour plans.

What's for dinner? 
Leftover New Mexican food, green chili & pork hashbrown scramble - if you're ever in Tucson, Poco & Mom's diner is the place to be.


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