Likely to cause much intrigue for the name alone, Canada has an emerging talent in MOLITOR
Canada has bred a considerable amount of musical talent over the past few years. MOLITOR is on the verge of joining that growing number with a cocktail of indie rock flavoured with elements of hip-hop.
Far from hiding behind a moniker that creates much intrigue as to its overall meaning, MOLITOR is all about sincerity when it comes to song expression. Such honesty found in the creative output also stems to the working practices of MOLITOR, as the debut EP titled ‘Or Maybe Yesterday’ was steadily constructed over a period of time due to an equally challenging matter of higher education to contend with. This has meant a serious amount of hard graft which, to MOLITOR’s credit, has produced wondrous results considering the quality and professionalism of the aforementioned EP that never provides any clues to its DIY approach and college room foundation.
This creative prowess, finally brought to fruition with ‘Or Maybe Yesterday’, has not simply happened overnight, as there have been various stints of dipping the MOLITOR toes in the musical pool since tenth grade at school when a young kid and his guitar started to lay the foundations for such emotive numbers as ‘Remember Me’ with its absorbing bass-driven opening and eventual epic qualities. However, with age comes experience and this is something which has served the MOLITOR sound well to date, but it also remains a key element as far as evolution is concerned and MOLITOR’s own confession of striving to achieve such a thing when it comes to his music.
Judging by the stark differences of the predominantly indie-rock roots (‘Remember Me’) brushing shoulders with flashes of hip-hop (‘Bathroom Mirror’) regarding MOLITOR’s first EP, any desire to avoid remaining static for too long and need for personal and creative progression should not be a difficult obstacle for this Canadian artist to overcome. In fact, every measure is being taken to achieve such aims, as MOLITOR gears up for his debut album release, by acquiring enough expert advice to help realise his music’s full potential.
“I’ve been speaking with a lot of really cool people in the music industry who are a bit out of my league, which is fine as they can give me the cold hard truth,” explains MOLITOR regarding the initial stages of the recording process for his forthcoming debut album. “I am recording the album in Toronto and the people that I am working with are producers and engineers who’ve worked with Vampire Weekend, Imagine Dragons, Against Me, The Killers who are all really, really cool bands and major influences on me. So, I have been receiving advice from these producers and engineers, who will be helping out along the way and making sure the album reaches its fullest potential.”
As with MOLITOR’s first offering ‘Or Maybe Yesterday’, the full-length album remains purely a solo project, apart from the aforementioned expert advice sought by way of various producers and engineers. In addition, the album is self-financed and therefore keeping to the unwritten guidelines of true independent artist and one that maintains MOLITOR’s honest approach.
“It’s going well and I have received a lot of good feedback from the demos that I have been handing out to my trusted peers,” comments MOLITOR on the working progress of his debut album. “I am behind schedule at the moment, which is a little bit stressful at times, but that’s a good thing about being an independent artist as I can take time on the creativity as there is nobody breathing down my neck and reminding me of where my money is coming from because it’s all coming from my own pocket.”
There is no questioning MOLITOR’s commitment to the cause of striving to produce the best music possible, especially when hearing his own admission “I like being a solo artist, as I like having control over everything”, it comes as no surprise that his debut EP was full of quality and consistency judging from his unwavering self-belief. Such a personal quality is to be admired, and one that will serve MOLITOR well in his quest for achieving music of the highest order, but he also remains open to suggestions as indicated by the outside advice from various personnel in the music industry: “I am always looking for extra input and for any other ideas or criticism that I can have, just to make sure that everything is the best that it can be.”
With the album loosely scheduled for later this year, the MOLITOR concoction of indie rock with elements of hip-hop will continue, but with the latter genre gaining further momentum as MOLITOR explains.
“I have definitely matured in terms of song writing and my way of constructing songs, but there will be some similarities to the EP when it comes to the album. There will be a lot more hip-hop influences in this one, not in the sense of rapping but the drumbeats will be more forceful and the bass is more defined in these new songs. One thing that I’ve noticed when writing songs for this album is that I have been writing songs without a structure in mind. For example, I like the reaction from a listener if they think something is cool or a good idea in terms of big sudden changes in the mood of a song or the momentum suddenly comes to a halt and that kind of thing.”
Considering the cross-pollination of genres, how exactly does MOLITOR view his own sound?
“My sound is more indie-rock and spacey with elements of modern hip-hop.” considers MOLITOR. “The fleeting moments of hip-hop are definitely darker and in the sense of Kanye West’s hip-hop.”
Has hip-hop always been a big influence in terms of your music?
“Definitely, as I think hip-hop is one genre that’s always striving to be different. There are a lot of genres that just stick to a formula, whereas hip-hop is always trying to push the boundaries, and I really respect that as a genre.”
Can you provide some examples in terms of the genre of hip-hop pushing the musical boundaries?
“Two of my favourite artists in hip-hop are Drake and Kanye West,” answers MOLITOR. “They’re considered hip-hop artists, but when I listen to their albums, I wouldn’t consider a lot of their material hip-hop as they have influences from old school R&B and soul and things like that. For example, Kanye West’s latest album was more punk and old school eighties techno with its hard-hitting beats but still enjoyable to listen to, which I think is more punk than modern-day punk music.”
Where does the indie-rock influence come from in terms of the MOLITOR sound?
“That’s been the type of music I have always listened to, as the entire genre interests me,” explains MOLITOR. “That’s pretty much where my music derives from instrumentally, especially my guitar work as the guitar is primarily my instrument and therefore I do a lot of song writing with my guitar and indie rock has always been that genre which comes to the fore in terms of my music. One of the biggest influences on me is a band called Angels and Airwaves; the band consist of a former member of Blink 182 and every album they have put out is a spacey, astronaut-voyage concept album and they’re just really cool. Also, the lyrics are very honest and straightforward and I like to take a lot of inspiration from them.”
As already mentioned, the honesty of a MOLITOR song is identified by its hardworking approach but also its lyrical content that seems to reflect words of an autobiographical nature to a large extent.
“This is another reason why I like hip-hop as it’s very straightforward [lyrically] and not hiding behind subtleties and metaphors, which is what I like to use in my lyrics as well,” confirms MOLITOR regarding FLWs’ observation of the personal qualities of his lyrics. “I don’t think I have even written a song that’s not based on my life. There have been lyrics that I have written about things I’ve hoped would happen, so it’s still honest, but it may not be something that’s happened in real life.”
With songs such as ‘Remember Me’ referring to “…a missed opportunity and misconnection type of deal”, one song in particular sticks its chin out in the attention stakes and that is ‘Bathroom Mirror’. The reason why this particular song stands out from the crowd is due to the combination of hip-hop and indie rock, but also for its lyrics that seem to be referring to a bout of self-loathing or a narcissistic personality and therefore suggesting that not everything in the world of MOLITOR is as straightforward as first thought.
“That song was written right before I recorded the EP,” begins MOLITOR on his composition ‘Bathroom Mirror’. “I was in college and my first time of living away from home in a city about a two-hour drive from where I grew up and it’s a big major city in Canada, so tonnes of people and diversity and a completely different atmosphere from where I grew up. What transpired when I moved to college was that I realised that I could do whatever I wanted, and I ended up becoming this person that was outside my normal personality. To put it frankly, I was a bit of a womanizer. Therefore, the song is about reflection, especially in the early hours of the morning when perhaps nobody else is awake and you’re feeling a bit down on yourself because nobody else is awake and it’s the atmosphere of that early period of the morning. So I was thinking about what had happened and how did this happen to me and where I was in my life. It was not a particularly good time.”
There are no doubts about where MOLITOR is in his life right now, as the working progress of his debut album is truly underway but don’t expect any new material just yet as this is one artist who is willing to take the time to achieve the required results and rightly so.
“Right now I’m just working on the album and trying to stay focused on that. I don’t think there will be another EP in the coming months, but I would definitely like to get a single out, even if it’s not one that’s going to be on the album, in order to keep the MOLITOR [profile] alive in the quiet times.”
This is another reason why I like hip-hop as it's very straightforward [lyrically] and not hiding behind subtleties and metaphors, which is what I like to use in my lyrics as well."
FLW - From the Tapes
MOLITOR was subjected to an unscheduled Q&A session after a gig in Canada that really left him rather stumped as he explained to FLW.
“I can’t really think of anything that amusing during the recording process because as I said I’m still in the prerecording phase and therefore haven’t been in the studio very much apart from my own one. There is, however, one story that I often tell when I was on a previous tour. I was playing in a place called Hamilton, Ontario, which is an industrial town and not an artsy town, but I managed to find this theatre called the Art Word Theatre and it was a family run [business] by this married couple and they had set it up as if it was a bed and breakfast. What happened after our show had finished was that they came out on to the stage and told us to come back and answer some questions, which was not discussed at all and not planned and left us wondering what was going on. The husband of the theatre ended up asking us questions about who we were as if nobody in the crowd had ever heard of us, and was giving us the ‘insider’ actor’s studio treatment without actually knowing anything about us! It was pretty hilarious at the time.”