Machineheart performing live at the Teragram Ballroom in Los Angeles, California, Image courtesy Justin Higuchi, Flickr

Meet machineheart. The LA-based five-piece band has already caught fire in the blogosphere with their ethereal sounds. Judging from the cloud of smoke they’ve already begun to bellow with their lead single “Circles,” we’re certain with the launch of their Columbia Records debut album this year their stardom has only just begun to skyrocket through the alt-pop world. The Untitled Magazine was lucky enough to get our hands on some exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of their music video shoot for “Circles” and catch up with the band about the festival circuit, nausea on set, and taking time to remember the big picture.

The Untitled Magazine: What’s the inspiration behind “Circles”?

machineheart: The inspiration behind “Circles” was really kind of a pep talk to each other. We wrote it toward the end of the album writing process so by then, it had felt like we’d been working on the album forever behind closed doors. As patience to see things move forward was wearing thin, we really tried to channel the whole idea of persevering and picking each other up. Taking those somewhat sentimental lyrics and emotions and juxtaposing them against a somewhat bubbly indie-pop melody ended up working out fairly well for us. It’s palatable, yet still manages to speak to people on a deeper level.

UM: You’ve said before that the song is about not getting caught up in the minutiae of day-to-day life. Can you tell us more about this from a personal perspective?

mh: By the time we wrote “Circles”, we had already been writing the album for over a year, so it was a much needed fresh perspective. Sometimes you have to take a step back, take a deep breath, and remember the big picture. We were writing with our producer who lives, basically, on top of a mountain overlooking the ocean. Being up there, it was like a literal rising-up out of the mundane, out of the city, and seeing the beauty of it all below us. We wrote “Circles” from start to finish that day. It was just one of those special songs to us that needed to make itself known. I think we’re all glad for that reminder – to enjoy the journey and pick each other up along the way, even if we don’t know exactly where it’s taking us.

UM: What was it like being inside of those anamorphic installations for the video? Did anyone get sick from spinning around on the human turntables?

mh: Haha, yes! Harrison (drummer) was starting to feel a little nauseous so they had to slow the speed down for him. The set was awesome, there was so much attention to detail. We were all terrified of accidentally knocking something over and a domino effect happening but thankfully, no one did. It was no small victory when they called out ‘it’s a wrap’ with all the shapes still standing.

UM: What are a few of your favorite tracks from the album?

mh: Being that it’s our debut record, without ever putting out an EP, every song is incredibly special to us and at one point was probably our favorite song. There’s so much time and growing up that went into making this record and we couldn’t be more excited to share it with everyone. “Circles” to us is just the scratch of the surface. There’s songs on the record like “Kingdom Come”, “Best Thing”, and “Shelter”, that give you a wider and stronger understanding of who we are as a band. Inevitably, that’s very important to us.

UM: You’re doing a mini festival circuit this summer – which are a few that you’re really looking forward to?

mh: We look forward to each festival for different reasons. We played a festival in Ohio last fall and everyone told us we had to come back again to play Bunbury in the summer. At Bunbury we’re playing alongside bands like Bleachers, Walk The Moon, and Catfish And The Bottlemen which for us, are all cool bands we’re currently vibing on. Summerfest in Milwaukee is also going to be great as we’re opening directly up for AWOLNATION who always put on an amazing live show.

UM: What more can we look forward to from machineheart in 2015?

mh: Releasing the full-length record this year and hitting the road are definitely things to look forward to. We did a lot of growing up and searching of ourselves on this record and think that it will directly connect with a lot of people. We know what it’s like to have our favorite albums from our favorite bands that we grew up listening to become the soundtrack to our lives. So in the most humble way, we hope this record becomes a part of the soundtrack for other people’s lives.


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