I had the chance to chat with Jack, Johnny, and Matt of the band about live shows, recording music, their fans, and much more. Check it out, and be sure to show them some support when they come to a city near you!
For those who are unfamiliar, briefly fill us in on the members of the group, and how you all met.
Matt: Kevin and I had met online actually… I saw his page on bandmix.com and thought he was exactly the right sound for some songs I had written.
Kevin: Yeah, we met up and actually wrote about 10 songs in about two or three weeks. There was instant musical chemistry.
Matt: One of those songs was “Deep Blue” which was the first track we recorded together.
Johnny: They had been playing open mics for a little while and stumbled across their page on Facebook. This was back when they were “The Strangers.” As soon as I heard “Deep Blue” I immediately wanted to play with them. We practiced once and played a show a week later.
Jack: I was added to the lineup a little later on and we have made a ton of strides since then. I had seen them prior to joining the band and felt I would add a certain dynamic that fit perfectly with their sound.
I have to ask, what does the band name mean?
Johnny: Actually, we’ve changed the meaning a few times for just this specific question. From rule 34 to having test subject numbers, the answer has changed over the years. Honestly, we just feel our music speaks volumes and has very experimental attributes.
Kevin: Experiment 34 is more of a definition than anything else, it defines us as a band.
Describe your sound and style.
Matthew: The word we’ve adopted for our sound is “psycho-funk.” We really do a lot of genre-bending from track to track with all of the different influences we have. Our similar influences help our sound to gel and keep things familiar but it’s our differences that we feel really make us original. From hip-hop, to metal, to funk, to blues and beyond we’ve touched on a lot of different styles to create our own fresh sound.
I am loving your single, “Check Up,” and you guys just released a new video for it. How did you think of the concept of the video, and how has the reaction been thus far?
Jack: That was a DIY job actually. We contrived a short storyline and I got out the camera and started filming/directing. It has a really good feel to it and this track/video helps push that “psycho-funk” sound that we consider a staple of ours. The reaction has been mostly positive. We were actually just named Jersey Rock’s “video of the week” on 95.9 the WRAT.
How many songs do you have recorded, and are there any plans for a new release anytime soon?
Kevin: We released our first EP, Charismanic, back in March. It’s three tracks long and we have another three tracks coming out by the end of 2016. This will be Charismanic 2.0 and we recorded all of these tracks at Lakehouse Studios in Asbury Park, NJ.
I see you guys play all over the East Coast, which market would you say you have the best following?
Matthew: Everywhere we go we play as though it’s the last time. The crowd always seems to appreciate that. We always make sure we give them something to remember. As much as you hope people come out to see you again and again, fact of the matter is, they may never see your show again, so you better make sure you give them something to take home with them. Whether it’s Albany, Brooklyn, the Jersey Shore, New Brunswick, Philadelphia, or Kevin’s attic, we give it our all.
What do you all prefer more, live shows or recording?
Jack: We try to bring our raw live energy to our recordings. We have a blast with whatever it is we are doing as long as we are creating music while we do it. Studio sessions really pump us up. It’s always exciting to release a new track or video, but it is equally exciting for us to express ourselves in front of a brand new audience and touch them in a different way.
Now that summer is over, what does the rest of 2016 have in store for Experiment 34?
Johnny: Stay tuned for our upcoming releases. We’ll be working on a new video as well as releasing another EP. We’ll be branching out and playing more shows as the cold weather comes closer. As much as we love Jersey, we hope to spread our sounds a little further more often as we prepare for the new year.
If fans want to learn more about you, or just say hello, what is the best way for them to reach you?
You can learn more about us on some of our social media pages. We are active on Facebook (facebook.com/experiment34) and Twitter (@Experiment_34) if you just want to say hello. Also, if you’d like to see us making crazy faces, check us out on Instagram (@Experiment34) or watch our videos on YouTube (make sure to hit that subscribe button!). We have a trailer for our traveling needs and it also makes for a great place to record acoustic sessions, which we call “Trailer Sessions” (on said YouTube). Message us on any of these outlets and we will be sure to respond.
You can see Experiment 34 at the Black Bear Bar in Brooklyn on Sept. 10, Hub City Sounds in New Brunswick on Sept. 11, and The Saint in Asbury Park on Sept. 17. They will also be appearing at the Makin Waves Rock Circus on Oct. 22 with The Black Clouds, Will Wood & The Tapeworms, The Productions and more at Roxy & Dukes in Dunellen, NJ on Oct. 22. Visit their social media pages for more information.