If you've been around dance music in Western Canada in the last year at all, you've probably come across Moontricks. The duo, Nog and Sean, are out in these mountains and streets, making downright sexy bass music. They've become festival favourites, pleasing audiences of all stripes. (Anyone else get trapped in the line outside of Lucky Bar during Rifflandia? Goodness gracious.) It's not hard to figure out why their appeal seems so universal - the combination of deep, ultra-silky basslines and live instrumentation (Guitars, banjo, harmonica) is both new and familiar, futuristic and rootsy. The fact that this all brought to our ears by two super-nice dudes is just a goddamned treat, really. It took me awhile to get these deservedly busy cats on the phone for a little chat, but I finally managed to do it, as they prepare to hit the road to help the masses thaw out from the winter and start getting ready for the warmer, sexier summer nights ahead. Go out there, see Moontricks on the road and wind up your waists.
Special call to my good folks in Victoria. Forget that it's a Thursday and get your asses out. Grab a ticket HERE.
Enjoy some delicious ear-treats courtesy of the good Kootenay homies while you get down with this chat.
1. Do you guys remember the first album you bought with your own money?
Nog: It was probably one of those order 10-CD club things, probably. I just remember some of the early stuff was Green Day, Sublime, Rage Against the Machine.
Sean: I tended to have mixtapes for the most parts that were just raided from my parents' collection. I don't think it was any album in particular.
Any particular song on those mixtapes that made you wanna get after it more?
S: Marvin Gaye. There was a tape that had Marvin Gaye's “Heard It Through the Grapevine.” That was a good roadtrip tune.
2. When is the last time you did something for the first time?
N: That's a really good question. Ummm, we played Canmore. <laughs>
S: Yesterday I was out hiking and came across a cougar that had crawled up and died in this cave and was frozen solid in the back of this cave. It has icicles coming from the ceiling of the cave down over it. There's been a cold-snap for the last month and so there's this rock-solid cougar in a cave that we came across. That's the first time I've done that.
3. What's your most positive memory of an elementary or high school teacher?
N: My drama teacher, Jill Holland, was a good teacher. She taught me how to do this “Tao breath” thing that's like a yoga meditation thing. Basically you just breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Sometimes we do it before we go on stage. It's supposed to put energy into your mind and oxygen into your brain, quite literally, so you can focus before you go on stage. I've thought about that for a lot of my life when doing any kind of performing. Lots of that stuff I learned in her drama class can be applied to music as well.
S: I had a science teacher who was so into his teaching and he'd get really excited about whatever we were going to do that day. One of the days we were doing stuff with batteries. He ended up showing us how to hook up a battery and attach it onto the door handle of our classroom first thing in the morning so that the kids who showed up late would get shocked.
S: Yeah, he was a good teacher. I don't think you could do that anymore though. <laughs>
4. If you could spend the day with anyone, living or dead, who would it be and what would you do?
N: I could think about going into the studio with some of the greats back in the day, just watching and being there. Seeing how those albums were created. It's not a specific person. The Beatles or any of the classic rock in early recording days. Anyone in the studio I could learn from, really.
S: There's a poster of Bob Dylan on the wall that I'm looking at right now. He's definitely an inspiring songwriter of my upbringing. He'd be a good guy to spend time with, I think.
I think that'd be intimidating. He seems like an intimidating sort.
S: I got to see him play once in Kelowna and he was so old so he didn't seem overly intimidating.
The last time I saw him play he looked like an old Mexican lady in a had. He's a really weird-looking old dude.
S: He's really eccentric. He said some really weird things on the mic.
5. We actually a couple of guest questions today, thanks to timing. Ben Caplan of Ben Caplan & the Casual Smokers asks, if you were a hotdog, would you eat yourself?
S: Yeah probably.
N: Self cannibalism, yeah.
S: I'm not super into human cannibalism, but hotdog self-cannibalism, I could be down for that.
N: A nice campfire roast.
6. The second guest question is from Vancouver rapper Immerze. If you could pick three artists from any genre to collaborate with, who would you pick?
S: Well, Bob Dylan. He's just asking to be a part of our collaboration.
N: Because you're looking at him on the wall?
S: He's looking at me.
N: I'll go with Dr. Dre. Now we got Bob Dylan singing on top of Dr. Dre. Now we need something else in there. Another element. Maybe like, Nina Simone. Playing piano and singing. Bob Dylan can take care of the words.
S: Bob Dylan will write the song. We'll produce and sit back and watch it all happen.