An Interview With Ménage

New alt/indie band Ménage have released a new video for their single ‘Promises’, taken off their upcoming self titled EP, set for release on the 14th of October 2014. The band consist of siblings Basilio Fernando (guitar/vocals), Bela (keyboard/vocals), and Gabriel Ferreira (drums/percussion).

Menage released the radio-friendly, anthemic track, “Our Time is Now,” an introduction to their forthcoming EP. This then gained two nominations at the International Portuguese Music Awards in Massachusetts in March of 2014, as well as wins for Rock Song of the Year at the International Portuguese Music Awards.

Introduce yourselves and from your musical inspirations, if there was one person to give you a piece of advice in order to help you through your musical career, who would that be?

Ménage is: Bela Ferreira – voacals and keyboards, Basilio Fernando Ferreira – Vocals and guitar, Gabriel Ferreira – Drums and percussion, Dave Haskett – Bass and Elliot Norman-Boult – Guitar

I think we all have our own opinions of the optimal mentor who we would seek knowledge from in what we do and in our own art…  career wise, I think we all agree that any band or touring musicians that last decades, under the radar consistently making music are who we would want to learn from. Bands like Face To Face, Placebo, Eisley, Gomez are a few that come to mind.

What is the music scene like in Toronto?

Toronto I think, has a very similar scene to the Silverlake Indie scene in L.A. (on a smaller scale, of course).  I think there is a pretty vibrant hip-hop scene as well. There will forever be a heart-broken Canadian singing classic country  down my street. I mean, like any major city we are pretty fortunate to have a pretty diverse selection of music options on any given night.

How has the reception been so far for your brand new single/video “Promises”?

This recording is actually a re-make of a song of ours off our debut album. We wrote and played this arrangement live, it kinda became a favorite and we were constantly asked where it was available. So we decided to make this minimalistic recording and filming of the song. We did something completely new to ménage which was, film, play live off the floor and record a song  top to bottom in a day. This alone made Promises a success to us.

With being siblings in a band, has the music you grew up listening to played a part in terms of song writing and live performances?

We are always influenced by the music we hear when we are kids in our parents’ car. One of the great things about touring is the exposure every night to bands from so many different cities playing music that is inspired by their childhoods and drives in their parents’ cars.

What is it like being siblings in a band?

You fight more. You love more. I can’t imagine any other band going through what we do. But at the end of the day, no one will ever quit on the others, and we really do love what we create together and that is why we start bands in the first place.

What is one goal you would like to achieve as a band?

Reading Festival, Rock In Rio, Saturday Night Live. For whatever reason, these stages specifically are the “larger than life” personal goals. In the short term, getting someone to drive the van is the goal.

For anyone who hasn’t heard of Ménage, how would you describe your sound?

Tough question. On any given night depending on what songs we choose to play you can hear a selection of female fronted songs accompanied strictly by piano or you may catch us on a night where we strive to be the loudest band you have ever seen.

What was the first concert you attended?

Dave  – A Robert Plant solo show in Toronto.

What was the first CD you bought?

Gabriel – Scarecrow by: John Cougar Mellencamp

Bela – Janet. By Janet Jackson

Elliot – Big Shiny Tunes 2…. (it’s a yearly compilation put out by MuchMusic in Canada)

What is the one must have item you always take with you while on tour?

Italian pocket notebooks. Something about the feel, the paper, the leather cover. I have a really bad memory, so I feel like many great experiences, thoughts, people we encounter may as well have not existed once forgotten. So I write a lot of things down.

Apart from checking out Ménage, are there any bands we should check out or feel deserve more recognition?

There is a great artist, Nico Stai. He was our neighbour in Echo Park in LA. I think he  writes really good songs. I kind of lost touch when we got really busy and traveling more, so I don’t know if Nico is still playing.  I feel like more people should have heard of him.

Individually if you were able to claim one of your favourite songs as your own, what would those songs be?

Basilio Fernando – The Soviet National Anthem. One of the most epic pieces of music ever composed.

Elliot – Twice by: Little Dragon. I love that its beautiful and haunting.

Dave – Don’t think twice is alright by: Bob Dylan. Classic.

Gabriel – Bohemian Rhapsody by: Queen The operatic vocal line will forever be attempted by drunk friends in any country of the world.

Bela – Helena by: My Chemical Romance. I am a closet emo fan inside. This song has always given me goosebumps.

What’s next for Menage?

e.p. #2 and touring in the u.s.

For anyone who wants to find out more about the band, where can people go?

menagetheband.com has links to all our social media, tour schedule and a contact page that WE DO respond to


 

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