GIGsoup recently had a chat with Moon Hooch’s drummer James Muschler. The New York- hailing group are famous for their unorthodox production and performance methods and the sheer energy that they bring to the stage. Check out their insane Tiny Desk Concert above!

You’ve recently returned to the studio to produce ‘Light It Up’. What was the motivation for getting back into recording now?

James: We gotta record! If we don’t record, then we’re a bunch of lazy guys.

Tell me about your busking days in New York. What was the largest crowd you ever managed to attract?

Sometimes over a hundred people would start raging spontaneously. The weekend nights were the best, as you can imagine. New York City goes wild. We would go down there a few times a week and there was always something crazy going on. 

Your signature sound involves using traffic cones and the like to exaggerate the sound of your instruments. How did you come up with that method of producing sound?

When Wenzl (sax) was a wee little one, he stuck all kinds of things in his thing and the results always felt very good. The tube was one such thing, and it stuck. He uses the tube daily now. At first we were worried, but then it seemed to really get him going so we gave it a try and now we all tube. 

You recently became a carbon neutral band. How did you achieve that?

We teamed up with an organisation that calculates how much carbon we’re dumping into the atmosphere each year, and they “offset” the emissions by planting the proper amount of trees to suck up all that carbon.

There seems to be a meticulous and careful nature to your music, which seems like a bit of a paradox considering how high energy it is. But your philosophies, such as veganism, using the reverse DJ set up and learning tabla in India are all reflected in the kind of production that you engage in. Would you say that this is a fair assessment?

J: Definitely. We are all very concerned with the growth of our knowledge and freedom.

Whats next for you guys?

J: We’re touring the rest of the year. Gonna record some new music. Gonna try our best to stay healthy and positive. Slay the pain with light.

You can catch Moon Hooch on the 9th of July at KOKO, London and you can listen to their new EP ‘Light it Up’ below

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