We recently featured a review of Murmur’s album ‘The Boundless Black’ and are delighted to share an exclusive with you. Ryan Patrick White took the time to talk to us about their future plans, their unique sound and hating phones.
This project marks a departure from the hardcore scene, what inspired such a drastic change in style?
We have actually always written melodic music. I started writing acoustic songs when I was 10 years old, ripping off (poorly) the Beatles, Crosby Stills and Nash. Pete is a classically trained singer and I’m positive he started writing melodies and lyrics in the womb. He has a natural gift for vocal lines and poetry. Hardcore music is where I found my love for writing and performing. In my experience, most hardcore kids have deep and eclectic tastes in music. I know we both found solace in punk and hardcore. I always wrote my songs and recorded at home after shows. I can’t imagine one without the other really. I think harmony is one of the huge inspirations for Murmur. You can do vocal harmonies in any style of music obviously, but we wanted to create a new sound. The sound of the Connecticut’s landscapes.
Your sound is so unique, what artists did you draw influences from?
If I had to narrow it down to 3, I would say Jim Croce, Simon and Garfunkel and Nick Cave. Or Bjork, Tom Waits and Hall and Oates. It’s somewhere in there. Sometimes it’s the Beach Boys, the Bee-Gees and Butthole Surfers.
What is your typical writing process?
It keeps evolving, I feel like our lyrics are seamless with each others. I cherish the mystery around who wrote which line in which song and for what reason. I like how Tom Waits puts it, “I think you just write, and you don’t try to make sense of it” I can’t wait to get back in the studio and get weird. Pete wrote out several storylines as the basis for lyrics, so they would have legitimate legend continuity and foundation. Eventually we will release books with each album. We shot videos for 3 of the songs so far, and it seems like we will end up shooting one for every song on the album. We both love cinema so much, we hope to score films in the near future. Pete’s children sang with us on Long Before the Light. That was the highlight of the entire album for me. Greta and Slade were both born to sing.
Which song would you recommend to someone who’s never heard your music before?
The Last Parade. First song we ever wrote. It’s the demo that inspired us to just go ahead and write a whole album. That one or Long Before the Light.
Will your next album continue to explore this world?
Hard to say. We have no expectations, we just want to build a universe.
My Mum always gets me to ask this; what is your favourite app on your phone?
I have to be honest, I hate my phone, I feel like it’s a monstrous necessity and I wish had never gotten one. It’s hard to pick a favorite, when on my best days I’m grateful to achieve apathy regarding the phone. Most days it’s pure resentment unfortunately. I miss landlines and privacy, There are obvious upsides, I’m not denying that, I’m just saying I could do without them all in the bigger picture.
What would you like to achieve through your music?
We want to create a world with our music. Like Tolkien did with his writing. We hope to reach people in real way. To give others solace, like our favorites did for us, and to leave something behind. I can’t express myself through regular interactions with the same articulation as I can through music. We just want to keep writing. We can’t stop, there’s too many stories to tell.
CD, vinyl or digital?
Vinyl is always my favorite way to hear anything.
Where, ideally, do you see Murmur in 5 years?
Writing and Performing music, constantly growing and refining. Renting out Silver Bullet Studios for 3 months to make a beautiful nightmarish masterpiece with Greg Thomas and Chris Teti. Having friends and family help.
Murmur is an outstanding band, creating something truly unique and captivating. I cannot wait to see where they go next, but until then keep listening to ‘The Boundless Black’ – this album is timeless.