The Masters of Hemisphere will be making a stop this Wednesday, 10.19 at Hambone's. The Athens based band had not been heard of in over 10 years. They recently released a new album entitled These Are The Breaks and are making a trip to Pgh on the way back from CMJ. The band was a part of the indie pop scene back in the mid 90's releasing their albums on Kindercore Records (Of Montreal, Dressy Bessy). The band recorded 3 LP's and a handful of EP's before calling it quits in 2002. They were kind enough to answer a few questions for us about why they produced a new album and what their future plans are.
Why the new album now? You stopped playing right around 2002? What have you been doing in the meantime?
Good question. We don't really have an answer other than our drummer Jeff Griggs called each of us and asked if we would do another album. At the time he was the only one still living in Athens and said that the love for the Masters had not diminished and people would be excited to hear something new. After we broke up I moved to San Francisco and Bren Mead (the other main songwriter) eventually moved there as well but has recently moved back to Athens. I started a joke reggae band over there called Still Flyin which over the years has evolved into a total non-joke dance pop band. Jeff and I have always been messing around with our best pals in an eclectic band/collective called Je Suis France. Adrian (the George Harrison/3rd songwriter of the group) leads a hot soul band called Night Moves Gold. And Bren dabbles in his solo project Vetran whenever he has the time/desire.
Are the original core of the band still in place?
Yes sir. Except Adrian has two kids and can't make the whole tour, so we're bringing an extra pal along named Ken to fill in for Adrian and be a special fifth member when Adrian is around.
Are you touring between vacation time from jobs? Or is this a more serious venture at this time?
We're touring between jobs and our other bands' tours. Trying to keep it the opposite of serious.
You just recently released a new album Maybe These Are the Breaks. Was this material you had left over from 2002? Or is the material new?
Some of the songs would have been on the next Masters album, had there been one in 2003 or 2004, but a lot of the songs are brand new.
Was there any theme to the new album?
It's a break-up album. It could be about the band breaking up back in 2002.
What made you want to dedicate your life to music? Was there a show or album?
It might be in my genes. My dad played in bands and my grandfather toured as the bandleader of big bands. As a kid my dad would play guitar for me a lot, so that would be the show - the private shows from my dad.
What would you like to accomplish with this project? Are there any goals you have?
Just what any self-respecting band wants: a good laugh.
Anything you would like to say to Pittsburgh?
Prepare to get your bone hammed.