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It Gets Worse: Mindless Self Indulgence, Kickstarter And Breaking Bad

Monday, 02 December 2013 Written by Alec Chillingworth

There is no way to properly describe Mindless Self Indulgence. Since their debut album, 'Tight', landed back in 1999, the band has come a long way and their eclectic mixture of rock, hip hop, punk, jungle, metal and various other musical nuggets is enough to make almost every other band out there look positively mundane.

They've toured the world and pissed off countless parents with their puerile, fantastically vulgar lyrics, but sat backstage prior to a headline slot at London's KOKO, frontman Jimmy Urine and guitarist Steve, Righ? (not their real names) are the epitome of friendly and far removed from the manic, cartoonish characters we see on stage.

The band's latest release, 'How I Learned To Stop Giving A Shit And Love Mindless Self Indulgence' dropped earlier this year and was funded through the fan donation site Kickstarter, giving the band room to make sure their fans got what they wanted.

“We got rid of the middle man,” Jimmy said. “It's [Kickstarter] basically a pop-up shop. The problem with most of these crowd-funded things is they all say stuff like 'ooooh, donations', but that's just the companies after more money. What we've done is, you're actually giving me money, I'm making a product, then I'm shipping it, we're calling people up, making the merch. We've made a Mindless Self Indulgence store for somebody who wants Mindless Self Indulgence products.”

Giving his glorious beard a good old stroke, Steve added: “We kept unwanted fingers out of the pot. We were sick of people saying 'ooh, you need to have this' or 'don't say that word so many times'. We wanted to do something where we had total control, and that was the only way to do it. The fans are paying for it, and they're getting what they want.”

'How I Learned To Stop Giving A Shit And Love Mindless Self Indulgence' is something of a curve ball. It doesn't sound like any of the band’s previous albums, yet is strangely familiar at the same time. It's fresh and pleasingly uncanny. After taking a more straightforward approach, well, straightforward for Mindless Self Indulgence, on 2008's 'If', the band have drawn more influence from hip hop this time around.

“Well, if it was flowin', it was flowin',” Jimmy said, spreading his arms across the leather sofa. “There's a couple that are very hip hop, and one that's basically about how hip hop sorta blows at the minute. Ass Backwards is kinda hip hop too. But if it's got a wicked beat, we just go with it. We do what we do very well. We're not doing what anyone else is doing, and nobody else is trying to do what we do.

“Back in the day when there was no internet, people had to belong to a certain 'scene'. There was the punk rock kid who would only listen to punk rock, there was the hip hop kid, the kid who went to new wave shows and so on. But, even if they were wearing their so-called uniform, the punk rock kid had all the Wu-Tang Clan CDs, and had his CDs by the Cure for when he was making it with his lady and so forth.

“He had all this stuff anyway, and we liked it all, but we didn't like any one genre enough to commit to it. I just thought 'I'm not a rapper and I don't wanna be part of the rap scene'. Everything was so one-dimensional and we were always a little more three-dimensional.”

Nodding his approval, Steve added: “It's like a mixture of all the best bits of the other albums. Like with 'If', there were some people who liked it, some who didn't. You obviously have the 'Frankenstein' ['Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy', the band's third album] fans too.

“As people, we were never really attracted to a scene because we just sorta thought 'why are you telling me what to do?' Musically, it's the same. You don't have to go full-force into one thing, especially if you're not fully committed to that style of music or the scene that comes with it.”

While bending genres and generally causing mayhem with Mindless Self Indulgence, Jimmy has also been beavering away with System Of A Down frontman Serj Tankian on Fuktronic. While it's a long-delayed, in-the-works project, it's something that could really test new creative waters. A song from the project, Chase, has been online for some time now. Needless to say, it's absolutely nuts.

“Oh yeah, we're still working on that,” Jimmy drawled. “It's basically an English gangster film. It was done very ass-backwards. Me and Serj got together to make some electronic music and then we ended up doing voices and characters and stuff, then this script just sort of materialised. We started with a soundtrack and ended up with that. We're still working out what we're doing with it, how we're releasing it. We don’t know if it's gonna be for a film, for a video game, blah blah blah. But we'll let you know.”

And finally, as members of a group so fully embroiled in different facets of the musical landscape, what albums have Jimmy and Steve wrapped their ears around of late? Smiling, Jimmy politely dismissed the idea of listening to music for pleasure.

“I don't listen to music very much,” he said. “I'm not a very big music fan. To me, music is work, so if I listen to something that's new, even if I like it, my first thought is like 'oh, what's he using? What drum machine is that? Why is this guy on the radio and I've never heard of him?' For me, that's not fun. When I go back to the bunk after the show, I'm not gonna listen to music. For me it's comics, video games, movies and stuff like that. We wanna know, what's the newest cool British TV show?”

He was told that we're still recovering from the aftermath of Breaking Bad - something that Steve found amusing. “We've ruined it for you,” he said. “We took all your I.T Crowd and your Mighty Boosh and we've just given you these long-ass, epic dramas in return.”

Mindless Self Indulgence really are a funny bunch. Having risen from obscurity, the band now sit comfortably in a league of their own. They are a one-off, and their latest album proves that. “Keep with Breaking Bad,” Jimmy finished. “Forget about Dexter. You're just gonna be disappointed.”

Mindless Self Indulgence UK & Ireland Tour Dates are as follows

Tue December 03 2013 - WOLVERHAMPTON Wulfrun Hall
Wed December 04 2013 - MANCHESTER The Ritz
Thu December 05 2013 - BRISTOL Anson Rooms

Click Here to Compare & Buy Mindless Self Indulgence Tickets at Stereoboard.com.

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