There were many many obstacles to overcome, mainly just time and the shear amount of energy required when you undertake a challenge like making an album. Im pretty sure most people are aware that we had to find a new vocalist during the process which is easier said than done in this genre, apparently no one wants to work intensively and make no money, haha. But after a long time spent searching we found Matt and he managed to smash out the vocal parts in under a month, which we were all very happy with since we were already more than a year behind schedule. Other than that it went pretty smoothly, the hardest part was making sure everyone in the band was happy with the mix that Brown was working on and then finally the mastering which was done at Metropolis studios in london.
How did the writing process go? Was it a collective effort as you went along, or were there staggered breaks between writing between the members?
Yeah the process was mainly a collective one, although it ran over a period of just over three years, so the members that came later (Matt and Olly) had less input into the instrumentals than the rest of us. Browne was the main song writer for the vast majority of the record, but the rest of the members helped arrange parts and add there voice to there particular intrument. Later on Olly added some lead work and Matt brought his vocals.
I understand that you'll be proud of the album as a whole. But is there one specific song that stands out as your most proud moment in terms of songwriting or your own personal ability?
Weve all got our favourite tracks but i think the one that really came together with vocals and everything else was BlueSkyThinking, at least thats wat me (Swan) and Matt think, the rest of the guys would probably argue all day over that question.
Do you write music in your downtime, or do you have periods of time where you just sit down and write?
All of us write music in our spare time, not nessecarily for Monuments but all of us love music and its a part of our daily lives. We are just starting to get ready to write the next album as i type.
What kinds of things do you find inspire you to write new music? Other music, films, nature, anything?
All of that and more, Browne likes to get inspired by films and documentarys and work to a concept in his head, Matt like me (Swan) is inspired by a huge range of music and lyrically for this record, Noam Chompsky, Christopher Hitchins and Bill Hicks. Olly's influences are mainly drawn from heavy music (Gojira,Decapitated etc) and I think I can safely speak for me and Mike and say we are heavily inspired by everything from Jazz and Fusion to Hip-hop and Soul as well as Prog and Technical Metal.
How do you plan to structure your touring schedule after the release of Gnosis? Do you plan to tour for a short period of time, then get back to writing new material, or do you plan to tour for an extended period of time?
Both really, we would like to tour as much as possible but we also know we need to get another album out as soon as we can.
How would you describe the experience of filming/recording/releasing your video for 97% Static? How much of the actual production were you a part of? Besides recording in it, of course.
We decided to go with Stuart Birchall because we trusted giving him creative control over the video and i think we all agree that him and his crew did a great job.
How do you feel about the current generation of the "metal scene"?
I think its great, i mean the scene we're in is getting very over saturated with copycat bands but ultimately i think it'll simmer down to the pioneers and anyone else who throws out somthing original.
Last question, what music are you currently listening to? Anything new, or do you stick to old favorites?
Everything really personally i try and listen to new music every day. Im with Matt now and hes currently spinning the new Deftones, Ive also recently got into the new Architects and Browne is always playing Karnivool.
Monuments new album Gnosis is out now on Century Media
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