Chats: Kristin from MuM
influenced by little moments
MuM (pronounced "MooM") are an Icelandic band who are just about to set off on an extended tour of Europe as well as the USA and Canada. Here we have a chat with Kristin in Berlin about all kinds of things. What follows is an inexact transcription of a phone conversation
Mstation: How many people are in MuM?
Kristin: There are three of us and another three when we play live. Six. There were four of us when my twin sister was with us.
How long have you been going?
Five and a half years.
We are used to interestingly inventive bands from Iceland. Does the place itself have a dark secret - is it really full of death metal clubs?
The Icelandic scene is creative and diverse. There are many bands and many projects. People might go to a hip-hop club or some other but the important thing is your friends. People don't get caught up in scenes.
Independance of mind. that's good! What are your musical roots? Is there anyone you draw inspiration from?
We just do it. We like to travel around and .... make stuff, make music. We're influenced by little moments.
"Influenced by little moments", I like that. How many months of the year are you in Iceland?
Four to six months.
Is your main audience in any one place?
No, it's very spread out.
Yes, we've toured twice there so far and we'll be going again shortly. We start in Boston, go through Canada, and then go down the West coast. It's nice to drift along, playing music, and it's nice to read along the way. What we really like is to meet and talk to people about what things are like where they are. Quite often we don't have time to get about and see places properly so we learn through the people we meet.
That reminds me of John Cage's quote about living like a tourist ... but this is a little different.
then the conversation segues off into reading and Kristin is reading Adbusters magazine. We talk about how it's nice to read a magazine where the views aren't bought and paid for even if the current issue of Adbusters is a bit depressing. And then we go in a different direction ...
I really liked the story about Bjork's island, where she was looking for an island, and the Icelandic government bought her one as a gift.
I don't think that's true! She was looking for an island but there were problems and she went off in a huff ... at least that's what I heard.
Ah well, Iceland is normal then. Pity. What's the temperature now?
My brother said it was snowing before.
You're not in Iceland?
I'm in Berlin. We're usually in Iceland in the summer and autumn.
What's Berlin like these days?
Berlin has a fantastic creative life and it's really calm. There are a lot of concerts on but the people are never aggresive. There is a nice life here. A few years ago though, there were lots of buildings where the owner wasn't known. There were lots of squatters and this increased the creative life. Now, a lot of the buildings are being renovated.
We chat about creeping corporatisation and about how the UK seemed to be following the path of the USA.
In our first tour of the UK all the venues were run by Barfly. It was so depressing. I thought "how can we do this for three months?!". Europe was better and then we had a good time in Glasgow.
On this forthcoming tour we're trying to play different places. In the US we're using Clearchannel and we just found out some places.
Good luck with the tour.
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