Massive by name and massive by sound, this Melbourne four-piece deliver some of the ballsiest rock and roll you’re likely to come across. So we brought out the hard liquor in order to have a chat with Massive drummer and founding member, Jarrod Medwin.
Your debut album Full Throttle was released last month after a number of years touring. How does it feel to finally have that one out?
It was terrific to finally have the album released worldwide. It was out in Australia for approx. 12 months ahead of the international release, so it’s exciting to know that finally the rest of the world will finally get to hear it.
The album was one of the most anticipated rock albums of this year. How long was the recording process, where was it recorded and how did you decide on which songs made the cut?
I think we spent about 16 or so days in the studio. It was a fairly straightforward process. We went in knowing exactly what we wanted and how we wanted the album to sound. Our producer Ricki Rae was totally on the same page and knew how to get the best performances out of us.
The album has received a number of fantastic reviews, and rightfully so. How have you liked the feedback and support thus far?
It’s really humbling to see so many great reviews of the album coming from all corners of the globe. There’s been a few that have called Full Throttle the best rock album of the year – the best debut since Appetite, best Aussie debut ever … Eight outta Ten, Nine outta Ten, Ten outta Ten, album of the week, album of the month. Reviews have been plentiful and very kind in their praises.
Reading those kind of reviews and editorials, it’s crazy to think that the songs Brad [Marr, vocals/guitar] and myself wrote over one summer in my attic have been so well received by rock fans and critics alike, all around the world. It’s a nice feeling!
What has the feedback been like from your fans?
It’s brilliant when you see people in other parts of the country attend gigs who have seen you previously and they’re back, accompanied by a heap of new people who need to check out this band in the first person. That’s when, for us, we can become confident in the knowledge that we’re doing something right. Their mate has been banging on about Massive, telling people ‘You gotta come see this band.’
Massive regularly gets compared to other Aussie hard rock outfits such as Airbourne or classic acts such as AC/DC and Guns N’ Roses. Who would you say are the biggest influences on your music?
We wear our influences on our sleeve and aren’t afraid to show that. All the great hard rock acts of the ’70s and ’80s – Led Zep, GnR, Deep Purple, AC/DC and Aerosmith are all huge influences collectively. But individually we all have some very different music tastes and influences, and that has an impact on the way we play our instruments.
For a band that has only really been around for two years, how do you feel after having so much international attention in such a short amount of time – playing showcases in the US, having a feature in Hard Rock France and a huge UK tour with Buffalo Summer coming up?
It’s been a really crazy two years. I mean, Brad and myself went to high school together and have been playing music together since we were 15. But we hadn’t even met Ben [Laguda, vocals/lead guitar] and Aidan [McGarrigle, backing vocals/bass] ’til a couple of years ago.
We have done a lot in a relatively short amount of time in Massive; that was the idea from the outset of this band. Just do it full on, no fucking around, no time to rest. The international attention is unreal. I just cannot wait to get over there and smash them live!
What does the band like most about touring?
We actually enjoy being on the road. As in literally on the road. A lot of bands fly to interstate gigs in Australia these days and there’s a certain freedom and growth within a band, especially a new band, that’s missed when you fly I think. Aside from that, it’s a hell of a lot cheaper to drive … and that is a real aspect of it that must be considered.
Playing venues in towns you’ve never played before and not having a clue what to expect is always very exciting too. We’re always keen to explore ‘unchartered’ territory, as aside from wanting to spread the word about our band, we genuinely love the experience of more towns, more punters, more booze. Haha.
What can fans expect from this tour that is different to previous tours?
Fans everywhere can expect the kind of madness, mayhem, adrenaline and drunken good times that always come with a MASSIVE show. There’s no denying that we’ll be upping the ante with these forthcoming shows.
In the UK we’ll certainly be out to prove ourselves, particularly because of the build-up and the resultant expectation. Basically, we want to blow people’s heads off, give them gig experiences they won’t forget and reason to come back for more next time we pass through.
When&Where: The Barwon Club, Geelong – August 30; The Sound Bar, Werribee – September 5; The Loft, Warrnambool – September 6; The Espy, St Kilda – September 12 & September 19; and Whole Lotta Love Bar, East Brunswick – October 3