Tomorrow night, New Orleans-based rock band Mutemath will make their return to Madison at the Majestic Theater with Civil Twilight and Quiet Entertainer. Having played the venue before, Mutemath is looking to present something new. “We’ve got some new songs, a new guitarist since the last time we were in Madison and just a new show,” Paul Meany, the band’s lead singer, said in an interview with The Badger Herald.
The quartet, which features Meany, Roy Mitchell-Cardenas (bass), Todd Gummerman (guitar) and Darren King (drums), is dropping by Madison on their tour promoting their most recent album, Odd Soul.
Just as work on the album began, the foursome found itself reduced to a trio when Greg Hill, the previous guitarist for the band, left early in production. “It created an opportunity for our bassist to pick up the guitar”, said Meany, “It contributed a lot to the foundation of that record.” Though Todd Gummerman has since joined the ranks, according to Meany the band opted to remain a trio for the production of the album.
The Madison date will be the sixth on the band’s 29 date tour, and shortly after playing The Majestic the band will head to Canada, where Meany recalls one of the band’s more interesting shows. “We went there and we played our first show ever in a hailstorm. I didn’t even know that was possible. But it was an outdoor festival and the wind was blowing it right into the stage and we were just getting pelted,” he said. “But it actually turned out to be a pretty fun show. Nothing adds an X factor to a show like getting pelted with ice chips.”
Meany said Lollapalooza is his favorite festival to play. According to Meany, the city of Chicago brings an air to the festival that is unmatched. “There’s just something about being there and about Chicago that makes it a special place to play,” he said. The band most recently played the festival in 2010.
The original incarnation of Mutemath formed in the early 2000s and released their debut EP, Reset, in 2004. According to Meany, his relationship with Darren King lead to the creation of the band. “When we were first starting the band, we didn’t really have an M.O. and it was just playing what was feeling good and sounded right,” said Meany.
But since their formation, the band has experienced multiple setbacks, breakthroughs and moments of frustration that in the end led to growth. Meany identified the departure of Greg Hill as one such formative change. “There’s a lot of trust and camaraderie, and when you lose a guitar player or someone else like that, that’s when you draw on the strength of the guys you have left and of everyone who’s on board with you,” he said.
The band’s continued growth shows no signs of stopping, and Meany claimed the band’s mindset is ever-forward. “We haven’t made our best record yet and that’s what drives us,” he said. “We hope that we’re going to make our best album yet … We open for bands and play for thousands and thousands of people who have no idea who we are, and we know there’s a large portion of the population we still have to reach. So the goal is to just get better and try to get more well-known.”
With Mutemath taking their well-deserved place as headliner, Meany says this show isn’t one to miss. “Our M.O. on stage is to try to do as much as possible with as little as possible on the stage,” he said. “We’ll play our asses off. You get a $100 ticket show for $20.” And for those who still doubt The Majestic is the place to be this Thursday, Meany had this to say: “You never know when we’ll be back and it’s always our goal to put on a great show.”
Mutemath will play the Majestic Theatre September 20 alongside Civil Twilight and Quiet Entertainer. The doors open at 7:00 P.M. and the show starts at 8:00 P.M. Tickets are $23 in advance, $25 at the door.