Half Moon Run talk about tattoos, badminton & A Blemish in the Great Light | Stingray PausePlay

– Hey, we’re Half Moon Run, and you’re watching
Stingray PausePlay. ♪ ♪ I’m Zac Monson. Welcome to a very special
edition of Stingray PausePlay, here with Montreal’s
own, Half Moon Run. Hi, guys.
– Hello. – Great to have you guys back. Although I think last time we had
a different combination of you guys on the show, so… Welcome back for the first time! – On behalf of Half Moon Run.
– On behalf of Half. – Thank you for having us again. – You guys, the first time
you guys played together, I think was October in 2009. So you’re really right
up on your decade. You’ve been together
for 10 years now. Happy aluminum
anniversary, by the way. – Is that 10 year, aluminum? – It’s tin and aluminum, yeah. – Oh, those metals suck.
– I was going to bring you aluminum foil. Yeah, you’d think after…
like, aluminum should be one. Like, get aluminum out of the way.
– Yeah. – Or like a six month kind of thing.
– Yeah, exactly. Do you guys have a, like,
what’s been the highlight of your last decade for
you guys as a band? – Oh, that’s big. – Yeah, of course it is.
– For me, I’d say the playing with the Montreal
Symphony Orchestra. That was crazy. – Epic. Epic, epic stuff. – Terrifying show. – Yeah.
Why so terrifying? – Well, the conductor
keeps time in a way that, he moves his hands
ahead of the beat, which I’ve never seen before. – Yeah, okay.
– So I had to get Dylan to interpret his timing,
and then give me private time. – Because it’s like the tip, right? It’s the tip that’s the tick?
– Yeah. I never figured it out,
so I was just like, “Do not watch that
guy, ’cause he’s…” If I follow him, it’s gonna
be a disaster, so… – Okay, but it turned out great. – He’s a great conductor for
other people, so I’m told. – No offense to you, Mr. Conductor. You did a fantastic job,
yeah, not your problem. What can you guys tell me
about a badminton club? – Oh, a badminton club. Uh… Well, actually, Devon started…
invited me to play badminton, like, two or three years ago. And ever since then,
just, like, took off. I do it as much as
I possibly can. And Dev’s technically the best. It’s like, I’ve actually
taken lessons in badminton. – Specifically for this? – ‘Cause I really
want to be the best. But, like, Dev just comes in
after so long of not playing and just, like, kicks my ass. – It’s all in your mind,
it’s all psychology. – Yeah, but yeah, we had kind of
a league in the music industry, and we had all these people. At one point we had 12
people a week coming out. And everyone’s out of
shape. No offense, guys. [laughter] And I was keeping stats. – Yeah. Wow. – And rates, plus and minus.
– Really? – Oh, yeah.
– So who took the whole thing home? – Oh, it was my buddy Jared.
99.7% win rate. – Yeah. Although, he only came
a couple, like, 5 times. – That’s right.
– But still, he’s the best. He doesn’t need
the stats to tell that. – And I hear you’re a
serious skateboarder. – Yeah, yeah. It’s… It’s like a… Well, I started skateboarding
when I was 7, maybe? When my dad lived in California, and then it’s just
like a dream come true, just when we tour anywhere,
usually the States is the best, then just try to go to a
skate park in every town. Just get exercise
and peep the scene. – Yeah, man, why not? – We were living the
teenage dream for awhile. There was one tour where
we were able to bring our bikes, and every day in the States,
we would just bike to the skate park, whether it was across
town or next door. It’s like my teenage dream. We visited every skate
park in big city America. [crosstalk] Having played Tony
Hawk Pro Skater 2, a lot of those skate parks
are there, you know? That’s about… that’s as far as I got in
my skateboarding career, was that game. I’ve never even stepped
foot on an actual board, but that game killed it. I think I learned so many new
songs from that soundtrack too. – That was a huge soundtrack.
– Yeah, for sure. – So we asked the last
artist that we had in to ask you guys a question. The artist is The Chainsmokers, and the question for you is… – Hey everybody, we’re
the Chainsmokers, and our question for you is… – Would you rather lose
the ability to lie, or believe everything
you’re told? – Both are actually kind
of good ways to live. – Mm-hmm.
– If I lost the ability to lie, I think that would be ideal. If I believed everything
everyone told me, I would be very susceptible
to being taken advantage of, which would be a bad
trait in this industry, so I would take the former. – Yeah, yeah. I think
that’s the correct answer, yeah. – It’s the correct answer. – Awkward lives, but…
– Difficult moments ahead. But ultimately, the truth
would reveal itself, and you would live
really ideally. Maybe I should just do that. – “You’re gonna be star!”
– Yeah, exactly. [laughter and crosstalk] – “I am a star? Thank you!” – The album is A Blemish
in the Great Light, and I’ve always been
such a fan of you guys, but really after this
record, I’m arealfan. There was something magical,
magical, magical about this record. There’s, you know, CSNY,
Kings of Convenience, some Beatles kinda stuff. I know there’s some
definite “Eleanor Rigby” little melody lines in a
couple of those songs. [singing melody] You know?
– Yeah, yeah. – What’s your favourite
moment from kind of creating this whole project? – I’d say mine is probably
“Black Diamond,” and it’s the moment in the jam
space while it’s happening and it was like Devon just
started playing this guitar riff and then we all sort
of just chimed in and the instruments we chose
first were the ones that were final ones. You know, that’s always refreshing. – It’s always a nice feeling. – Yeah, and we all
just started playing, just started playing and then
the song just came together in a couple days. – Yeah, which is very fast for us.
– Yeah. – The last couple records,
it’s like when you listen to them, when I used to sit down
with my headphones and listen to those albums, everything felt very
close to my ear. Like, very close to my head. This album is not that way. There’s like a spatial quality
and a distance, almost, with this record. Was that something you guys kinda thought
about in terms of production value? ‘Cause it’s really, it’s like an
open, more airy spatial record and it was one of the things
that really stuck out to me. – We tried to bring it forward. Like, the presence of it,
bring it forward. I felt like the other ones are a little…
[muffled sound] And so I wanted to bring it up, bring it present and be more,
a little more punchy. And so… – Yeah, that’s almost the opposite
what you just described. [laughter] – I think it’s in the same…
– I think it’s in the same thing, yeah. – There is, like, a 3D element
to the sonic field, for sure. – That, to me, is even better-said. There was a 2-dimensional
kind of quality, not in terms of the
creativity, but sound-wise, this one is definitely
3D, almost 4D, I’ll even give you
that 4th D in there. Beautiful, the sound
quality is really amazing. [laughter] – Thank you for that. – You’re welcome,
thank you for that. So, what is the biggest
difference for you guys? In terms of this record
compared to your last records. – Well, there’s that, there’s
the production value. Boy, we went through a lot of
songs to get to, to land of these. I don’t even know how many there
are, ten or eleven on this. And I think we have, like,
40 starter ideas that didn’t make it. And so there was a lot of writing
before we decided on these. And then we went
in the studio with 20. Then cut it down to 11. – “Favourite Boy” is
such a great track. Such a great single. Tell me about the story.
Where did the story come from? ‘Cause it’s such a… It seems like such
a simple story, but it feels so powerful. You can feel exactly
kind of what’s happening. So tell me where
this idea came from. – It started with me and
Conner in the living room at his house and
we just kind of… It started as an addendum
to another idea, which then we chopped
off the original idea and then we had these,
basically, 8 chords, which almost is the whole song. And… And then the band, the other
guys put a nice beat on it. And then I kinda wanted to have,
like, an attitude in the lyrics, more than just kinda like… [whining vocals] [laughter] – Was that an impression
of yourself? Was that what you just did? [laughter] – Yeah, a little bit. I wanted it to be more… more of a story, more
story-telling vibes. I think that you have to bend, to make a good story,
you have to bend some rules. But it’s still
emotionally truthful, while perhaps being
intellectually not entirely true. – Yeah. – So there’s, yeah,
the emotion is true. – I think a lot of songs
are probably like that. – All these perfect events
that rhyme all the time! [laughter] That’s just too dead-on. – We need to find that guy. There’s gotta be one guy
out there whose life is a perfect song…
– Elton John. – Yeah, damn it.
– But he doesn’t even write his lyrics. It’s Bernie Taupin. – As you guys kind of get more
well-known and travel the world, your fan-base obviously grows. What is the weirdest or most fun fan
experience that you guys have had? – Fan experience,
fan experience… [laughter]
– Fan experience. – Ah… There’s a lot of
tattoos coming around. – Yeah, I was just
gonna say that one. – And are we talking
lyrics or y’all faces? – Not faces.
I haven’t seen a face yet. But there’s been the moons… – Well, surprise! – There’s been one in
Burlington a couple years ago, and I had ages ago,
like I signed my autograph on this girl’s arm and
she got it tattooed. – She kept it!?
– Yeah. – That’s love, man.
– Yeah, that’s true love. – That’s real love. – There was a young
woman in Germany that I had to write out
these words again and again. She was like, “No no no, more
like this, more like this.” And I was writing it out
for a long time. And then she got that
tattooed as well. – Sorry, so she didn’t
like your handwriting? – Yeah, so I had to write
it like 20 or 30 times until I got the one
that was the tattoo. – Okay, like you’re in middle
school being punished. Is that it? Great, like Bart Simpson. – We were hanging out with fans, I forget where this was,
in Europe somewhere, but, like, you ended up getting
a tattoo on your neck? – Wow.
– I got a… Well, it was in Norway. They do things really
high-quality in Norway, so their temporary tattoos
aren’t so temporary. And I was trying to impress
this girl and got this… this big, like, two sailor girls
with this big ship’s wheel, like, right there. And, you know,
she laughed and whatever. I don’t think she was impressed. Anyways, next day,
I stayed up all night, and then I had to walk,
like, straight into the cab to the airport to the next show. And then, you know,
backstage at the festival, trying to just get it off
and it’s just not even… It’s just getting redder.
It’s not going away at all. So I had to go onstage with
this giant neck tattoo. – And from a distance, it looks legit. – I’m sure.
– And it looks really red. – Infected, infected, but good. – Like, no tattoos on the arms,
but the neck? – Straight to the throat. [laughter] If you guys had to live inside
somebody else’s music video for the rest of your life, what music video would
you live inside? – Bonnie Tyler, “Total
Eclipse From The Heart.” – Oh, wow.
– Have you seen that? – I have, yeah. Why? – ‘Cause it’s just an endless
array of surprises, and actually, you got football,
you got karate, you got dancing. It’s like an activity center.
– True! – Um, I hope they have food. – I didn’t see snacks. – I think they have,
like, a Last Supper. They must have a Last Supper spread. – There’s gotta be a snack there. A cheese plate of some kind. [laughter] – I think mine would
probably be, ah, back when I used to watch
music videos all the time, probably Alexisonfire,
“Pulmonary Archery.” – Oh, wow.
– It was just like a nice house. I could live in that house.
– Yeah? – It looked pretty cozy. There’s like a jam
space, obviously. [laughter and crosstalk] – It’s not a bad one.
– The camera just goes into the house and then they’re just
freaking out, jamming there. – That’s one of the
more realistic life plan answers we’ve had
to that question. [laughter] – It’s very… it’s pretty legit. – I actually like it. I kinda wanna go
hang out with you in your life, yeah. Guys, I’m so happy I got
to sit with you guys and get to know
you a bit better and really and truly, I’ll tell
you a thousand more times, the new album is really magical. I’m so excited for
people to hear it. And you guys are great.
– Thank you. – I can’t wait to see you guys
do it in the next five years, another decade together.
I don’t know what 20 years is, but it’s gotta be
better than aluminum. So, whatever it is,
I’ll get you that. You can hear Half Moon Run on Stingray Music’s Rock
Alternative channel, Canadian Indie channel, and,
of course, Le Top Détente, jump on our mobile app
and our web player, find the magnifying glass search
icon, type in “Half Moon Run” to find all of the channels
that we play their music on. We’ll see you next time, guys. ♪ ♪

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