With every generation a handful of bands rise up able to offer an insight
to the everyday life of the community they move in and the challenges
it faces. When that social commentary comes from a personal perspective,
served up with a fearless honesty, and married to a wealth of musical
talent the result can be a particularly potent mix.
One such band currently carving out a niche for themselves are MassMatiks,
a britraprockgroovenumetal band that defies genre pigeonholing...(!)
A bunch of well crafted single releases have shown their impressive
diversity, from the punchy calling out of not-so-know-it-all pub warriors
in Blank Wall, to the epic relationship break-up song of 4AM.
An intense live show honed to a cut-throat sharpness consistently proves
this band more than capable.
So... I was particularly pleased the band were able to make some time
to hook up before a show recently. We had just a few minutes to shoot,
as they were due on stage soon after, and with people constantly walking
past there was no time to experiment. Even so, I took the opportunity
to use my medium format Seagull 4A, a Twin Lens Reflex camera made in
1968, which features a Haiou 75mm lens (one of my favourites for the
look it gives). The camera was loaded with Kodak Portra 400 film.
I wanted to create something a little different from the usual band
photo, and with little time to play around I decided the quickest solution
was for an unconventional lineup shot, with Josh (drummer) in the front
of the image and George (singer) at the back. Drummers are rarely at
the front in band portraits! It may well mean this photo is rarely used,
if at all, but for me I was happy with the dynamic it created while
retaining the feel of the band. I'm satisfied the image is sufficiently
different to other portraits of the band currently out there .
Anyway, keep a look out for a show and get yourselves along to one.
In the meantime you can buy their music at iTunes,
and more MassMatiks info can be found at massmatiks.net
Here's a few vids...
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