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Growing Up In Public
Currently charming the under-crackers off of all and sundry thanks to their chart-bothering single ‘Little Talks’ and debut album My Head Is An Animal, Edwin McFee meets Icelandic indie folksters Of Monsters And Men to talk overnight success, cracking the States and why everyone thinks they’re Irish.
The Hot Press Newsdesk, 17 Oct 2012
“No... at least I don’t think so,” he laughs. “Things in America really took off and we decided to focus our attention there, at least to begin with. It’s been a bit slower in other countries but they’re now warming to us. The staggered release has helped build more of an interest in us I think.”
A genuinely uplifting record which sees hushed ballads (‘Love, Love, Love’) nestle beside bombastic indie pop songs (‘Your Bones’), Raggi informs us that the album is a tale of two halves and even though he’s been performing some of the material for quite some time now, he hasn’t grown tired of the tunes just yet.
“When we started out as a band we were an acoustic act — we had no drums or anything,” he explains. “For me, our first album spans a transformation from that era to nowadays, where there’s seven of us onstage. I think our development into a big band was a very natural thing and whenever I listen to the record it almost sounds like it’s divided into different eras. Certain songs are from when we were acoustic, other ones are from when we got a bigger band together... it kinda just happened like that.
“It’s been okay touring the record for the last year. We like to change the set-list around a lot and there’s some cover songs that we do that are always fun to play. The work schedule definitely takes its toll though. There are many early mornings and late nights. It’s a lot of work, but it’s fun work.”
It’s a good thing that he enjoys what he’s doing, because 2013 is only going to get busier for the seven-piece. As we let the singer rejoin his band and head back out on another nondescript American highway, we leave him with a final two-pronged parting question. Why does he think his band’s music has captured the imaginations of so many music fans across the globe? And, after a barn-storming performance at Electric Picnic, are Of Monsters And Men aiming to invade Irish soil for a headline date in the future?
“When it comes to music, personally speaking I like simplicity,” considers the singer. “I don’t know if I’m coming across well when I say this, but I think the more straightforward you are when it comes to melodies and hooks, the more people can relate to it. I think people like us because our music makes them feel good and a little positivity is something that we all need right now.