The Enigmatic Duo Houka Monks – Exclusive Interview

Emerging out of the macabre backstreets of Funk, to hijack Pop, vagabond duo the Houka Monks, are as enigmatic as they are audacious. From the shadows, the relentless outsiders give no quarter with their harmonic cacophony.

Recorded in the basement, the Monks debut E.P is an alchemy of darkly beautiful vocals, interlaced between jangly guitars, retro beats and thumping bass lines. All encapsulated by the cynical lyrics of a misfit.

Houka Monks


www.myspace.com/houkamonks
WHO ARE THE BAND MEMBERS AND WHAT DO EACH OF YOU DO IN THE BAND?
Joe Matson…..lyrics and vocalist. Nick Moore….Band in a box (drums,bass, guitars, keys)

WHAT KIND OF MUSIC DO YOU MAKE / PLAY ?
We will go with funk pop…but whatever sounds good to us basically

WHERE ARE YOU FROM ?
We are both from Essex….you should be able to tell from Joe’s accent!….hahahahaha

HOW DID YOU GUYS GET TOGETHER AND WHEN?
Joe and Nick were in a band formed by Joe years ago. Although Nick and Joe got on..the rest of the band didn’t work so band fell apart. Years later Joe asks for Nick’s assistance again!….Just the two of us…Houka Monks then formed and has been going for about 2 years now.

WHO ARE YOUR INFLUENCES IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY ?
Herbie Hancock, Sam and Dave, Stevie Wonder (Pre 80’s), Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Red Hot Chili Peppers & The Stone Roses.

WHAT HAS BEEN THE HARDEST PART OF BEING IN THE BAND FOR YOU ?

Not having enough time!!!!

TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR EARLY DAYS AND HOW THEY DIFFER FROM NOW ?

In the early days we were crap….well we had a bit of a “that’ll do” mentality….and to a certain degree now we slip into that frame of mind occasionally, but as we do more we get more refined and particular about what we want to sound like! So we push ourselves a lot more than we used to. Well we tell each other that we don’t like what either of us has done!…lol

WHAT WAS THE LAST GIG YOU PLAYED, WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT ?

The Hollyoaks Music Unsigned Band Show on Channel 4……..Brilliant! Very enjoyable!

HAVE YOU ANY FORTHCOMING GIGS IN IRELAND OR NORTHERN IRELAND ? IF SO ARE YOU LOOKING FOR WARD TO THEM AND WHY ?
Not at the moment but they are bring planned for the future, so we’ll be over sooner than you think!

DO ANY OF THE BAND HAVE ANY IRISH OR NORTHERN IRISH CONNECTIONS ?
IF SO TELL US ABOUT THEM ?- Distantly on Joe’s mums side of the family. Her great grandmother came to England from Limerick at the end of the 19th century.

WHAT’S THE MOST SUCCESSFUL THING YOU GUYS HAVE DONE TO DATE ?
Everything’s been a bonus really, we’ve never really thought of one thing being more successful than another.

WHO HAS HELPED YOU THE MOST GET TO WHERE YOU ARE TODAY ?

Joe has done a lot of promotional work so id say he has done the most….Nick just sits in a studio and complains- that’s when he is not busy writing music…or is going on Facebook????

WHAT’S COMING NEXT FOR THE BAND ?
Hitting the road! We’ve spent so long in the studio its time to take our frustration out on a stage. Maybe we’ll start at the local working mans club. LOL

IS IT HARD BEING A NEW BAND IN TODAY’S INDUSTRY ?
It is…So many bands, you need a bit of good timing and fortune but that doesn’t mean you will make it without good material…we believe we have some good material. We just need to get it out there!….

HOW IMPORTANT IS THE INTERNET AND SOCIAL NETWORK SITES TO THE SUCCESS OF YOUR BAND ?
OMG this is key to a lot of our promoting…….Its amazing how much quicker and easier people can find out about a new band on the social networking sites.

QUICK-FIRE QUESTIONS:
WHO’S THE MESSIEST IN THE BAND?– Joe! Only cos Nick has OCD!!!

WHO IS HARDEST TO LIVE WITH ON TOUR?– We are both pains!

WHO IS THE JOKER AND WHY ?– Joe, then Nick..Joe starts it…Nick continues it…

WHO MOANS THE MOST ?– Nick says Joe, but Joe says Nick

WHO IS THE MOST ROCK ‘N’ ROLL & WHY ?– Nick….he has smashed some instruments…..yeah they were old but hey!…..

WHO IS THE LOUDEST ?– Joe….he has a microphone!

WHO IS THE MOST ANNOYING ?-Nick…never finishes anything…..this will be done next w….

WHAT’S THE MOST EMBARRASSING THING SOMEONE IN THE BAND HAS DONE ?– Nick likes to think he’s a stunt man, he once attempted to jump through a brick wall. (we have the video)

WHO WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO COLLABORATE WITH IN THE INDUSTRY ?– Mark Ronson

WHO WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO COLLABORATE WITH IN IRELAND OR NORTHERN IRELAND AND WHY ?– Van Morrison, cause the dudes a legend.
www.myspace.com/houkamonks
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