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The Scientists of Modern Music

Written by Daniel Clarke on April 8, 2009

Apparently, The Scientists of Modern Music (TSOMM for short) are ‘a synth bomb, the fallout being incredible tron-pop, beat driven glam-rock fronted by melody making, flesh and blood drones.’

That makes sense I guess. I was sold at the mention of Tron.

While not scientists in the traditional, lab coat wearing sense, Cal Simon tells me that uniform was adopted for their first gig but they quickly “got labeled as a bit of a novelty band” and so abandoned the idea. That being said, they do have an interesting approach to music.

“We kind of think about it more as an equation. You have to finalise an equation to get an answer so to us making a song is the answer to an equation.”

“We’ve got all these synths, we’ve got all these drum machines, all these tools that we can utilise to come up with an answer, which is a song. That’s how we inspire ourselves to make a track.”

Their approach is a mix of synth and live instruments that happened pretty much by chance while recording their first EP.

They “just went in to the studio and kinda got a beat together and then just ended up using our live instruments and trying to compile the songs that way.” It meant that most of their first release “was done mostly live, so that’s how we do it.”

TSOMM have secured numerous performances over the past couple of years alongside the likes of the Dukes of Windsor and The Pixies.

Cal explains that it’s been an affirmation to them to have the opportunity to meet grounded musical personalities.

“It actually just shows you how genuine people stay in the music industry because there’s a lot of crap out there and there’s a lot of crap people but the bands that we’ve met generally are just the nicest people you’ll ever meet.”

“It’s more inspiring to meet people who are still switched on. It makes us realise that we’re doing things right. It’s an inspiration, looking at those artists, they’ve toured around the world and they’re still nice guys. That’s more inspiring to us than just say, music.”

Their live show is energetic to say the least. I ask Cal what gets them so amped up on stage.

“I think we feed off the audience and feed off crowd reactions and just our general reactions to ourselves, kinda just going a bit stupid on stage and just enjoying the music.”

“We’ve played our songs for a few years but we still enjoy them, so why not? It gets people in the mood, and gets people more excited if they’re coming to see a music performance but they’re also coming to see a bit of a performance by us personally.”

The scientists have been busy as of late working on their debut album. Cal says they’re “really deep in to working on it” with “quite a few tracks that we’re working on at the moment, getting ready hopefully for a release in April.”

Their laboratory contains “quite a lot of instruments now that we’ve been playing for about three years.” They’ve accumulated a lot of gear but their approach to recording is quite different to their first EP.

“We like working separately so Simon works in his studio, I work in my studio, we come up with ideas and then in order to finalise them we work on them together.”

“Usually we’ve always got a beat and Simon’s got some sort of bassline and we just stick the kind of instruments we want to use on top and see what happens. It is quite different to the way we used to do it. We just used to jam all the time with the same instruments and now we just use whatever. It’s also sounding different now, so it’s good, a good step.”

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